Friday, April 30, 2010

Mother's Little Helper

This blog title and song is a little on the dramatic side but not by much. I mean, I don't really need a little yellow pill but, hey, the weekend is only beginning. The weekend, the time of the week that I look so forward to, has become a weekend of dizzy proportions! Yes....the weekend is here....the weekend of....drumroll...PROM.

In my ever changing moods, I never remember any of my proms being like this. It's our first prom so of course we are approaching it with that deer in the headlights look. The cheerleader has been to every homecoming dance. You buy the dress and shoes, you pick a place for dinner, you go and boogie, er, dance the night away. Prom...not so much. I missed the memo telling me that buying the prom dress (aka trip to Hades) would be the easy part!! And, the amount of cashola that goes into prom. I mean, how did I get by and preparing for my proms of the late 70s/early 80s on the 50.00 my mother gave me???? Poor Mr. Man looked like an ATM machine, this morning, as he was handing out cash and signing checks. His head looked like it might pop off. In all fairness, this is just always that time of year of school related expenses but they all fell on prom weekend, this year. Added to prom, there was also a tuition check for college courses the cheerleader is taking, cheer camp money due, cheer camp choreographer fee due, uniform fittings, it all just sort of built up to one big volcanic explosion of cash.

Back to prom, though. The cheerleader is an involved gal and is on the prom committee. And, she volunteered Mr. Man and me to do all kinds of fun things, too. Get large tents, strobe lights, Christmas lights, the phone calls come fast and furious as to what they need, next. Also, most of the prom committee quit except for the cheerleader and one of her bffs. Hmmmmmm...could they not stand the total bossiness of the cheerleader at the helm? Anyway, I have a big truck loaded with tents, strobe lights, Christmas lights and other items. I am just waiting to get the next call. At that point, a UHaul may be needed to transport all items to the school.

We spent one entire afternoon and evening, this week, on prom related dress and beauty. We picked the dress up from being altered, got it home (a half hour drive) to find that the alteration lady from the store totally FORGOT to do the main alteration!!!! I called the store and I guess at that point, you are SOL. After they get their money for the dress and then FORCE you into their alteration lady, they don't care that the work wasn't done. Goodbye...have a great prom...GRRR. So, we were both on cell phones calling everyone we knew to try to find an alteration lady that could take us on short notice. Found one, she is about 80 years old, she whipped that dress into shape, took beads off by hand, hand sewed them back and made the top part of the dress exactly like the cheerleader wanted. It took her all of 6 hours. I LOVE THAT LADY!!!

During the dress fiasco and multiple phone calls, we bought hair extensions (?????) I was always fighting the volume of my hair at prom but I guess now, the more volume the better. I was ahead of my time at my proms. Who knew? Then there had to be special purchases made at the mall and we still have not had the nail appointment or the hair appointmet. That all happens, tomorrow. And, of course, all weekends leading up to this weekend have been sunny, mild, lovely. Tomorrow?? Rain, rain and more rain and high winds. This will send me out on a search for an umbrella in the perfect shade of her dress. I must remember the corsage. Hey, when did the corsage AND guy's flower fall on the girl? In the 80s, your date showed up with a hideous mum or carnation and you just hoped it stayed pinned on your dress. These corsages are now called...Specialty Corsages...Designed and made with love. It's a flower. Anyway, the cheerleader did say that dinner would be covered by prom date. We are taking care of the limo. Prom Date is getting quite the deal.

But, it is the night that they all look forward to since they were freshmen. It's magical and mystical and they want to look beautiful and they are building memories. So, you stand and smile and smile and smile and then smile more. And run to the nearest store to get more prom decor to take to the school. Did I mention that I also have to stand in uniform line, too, this afternoon? Thankfully, being an incoming senior, that lets us move to the head of the class and first in line. Then, I am driving the big truck to the locale of the dance to help, er, supervise, the tent project.

So, maybe that mother's little helper is not so funny, after all...

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Givin' It Up For Your Love

Hey, didn't I just post that I would miss you and we would meet, again, on Monday? Yes, yes I did. I am, back for more. Yes, I did miss you and couldn't stay away but also, after yesterday's blog post, I got tons of private messages asking me to keep up my daily blogging, don't worry about stressing over prom and hey, while you are blogging, please blog about your birthday!!! So, I heard you all, loud and clear. And, I love you for it!! I love your kind comments and your great encouragement and I am flattered that you wouldn't let me take a leave. Basically, you all do a heart good!!

So, I am back with my birthday rundown complete with pics. And, I wanted to share with you since you did let me ramble for the entire month of April about my birthday. Oh look, two days left in the month and I am still talking about it.

My original plan was to spend my day cruising around in my convertible, Elle Woods. Mother Nature had other plans since I woke up to frost on the ground and a high of only the mid 50s. That is TOO cold even for the most die-hard of convertible driving fanatics. So, I did what any birthday girl would do and that was to go and do a little retail therapy, grab a coffee from her fav coffee house, vow to do nothing of the mundane and bask in the many phone calls, texts, emails, facebook birthday wishes and online board wishes that came my way. I started reading a book, took a nap in the sun and then went to my Mr. Man's parent's house for a lovely evening of wine, appetizers, dinner and cake and drum!

My mother called, earlier in the day, with her yearly birthday song that she belts into the phone. She is always gone in the month of April so I get her shrill, loud voice singing...Happy Birthday. I expect it, every year, and she calls at the same time, each year, on my birthday. It does make me smile. So, that always kicks off the day.

Something that you don't know about me is that I get to share this day. I share it with my brother. Yes, we were born on the exact same day, two years apart. Just between us, I was not elated when they told me I had a baby brother. First, it totally wrecked my two year old tea party. Second, I did not like having the birthday limelight taken or even shared. As the years would unfold, and there is evidence in pictures, I demanded always to have the bigger birthday cake. pictures, I had a huge cake. Beside, a little mini cake for him. One year my mother made the mistake of combining our big birthday party. There were so many kids there but us six year olds were ready to show the four year olds who was boss. It ended in tears...his tears. But, we are now over that and I guess I will keep him as a brother.

So, this year was a lovely, lazy day and my mother in law had my favorite shrimp cocktail from my fav place to get shrimp cocktail. It is THE best. EVER. So, we had wine, shrimp cocktail, brie cheese and bleu cheese stuffed olives for appetizers. She made an amazing meatless stuffed ziti with marinara sauce and fresh good!!!! A really great salad and a new recipe she used for a stuffed garlic bread pastry. Cake and coffee for dessert. It was the perfect ending to the perfect day spent with my favorite people...My inlaws, Mr. Man and the cheerleader...they make me feel loved, always, and not just on my birthday.

Thank you so much for taking the birthday journey with me, this month. And, thank you for not letting me escape to tend to I have included pics of the fantastic gifts I received for your viewing pleasure. I love you all and thanks so much for being my fan base!!

My cake....those closest to me know that my fav place to be is near the ocean. And everyone knows my love of flipflops at all times. All this cake lacks is a tiny plastic cabana boy.

Books!! Okay, the cookbook and the Sex and The City pre-quel were gifts to myself. My mother-in-law got me the other one, Classy. It was suggested as a companion read to a fun Coco Chanel book I just read.

A wine purse!!! What a GREAT idea!!! This gift was sent to me by my high school bff!! She knows me soooo well. She even knew to match my fav wine glasses. And, inside the wine purse, there is a little corkscrew. So, you can take a bottle of wine, anywhere, and all people will see is your amazing purse. Great thinking!!

My friends who are a couple gave me this bottle of wine..oops, someone has been drinking They also gave me these perfect little black and white napkins that they got on vacay because they remined them of moi and my Chanel obsessions of black and white. Both gifts came packed into this very Coco inspired gift bag with little Parisian it!!! They endure me as I read about Coco and toss out her quotes. They even nicknamed me, Coco. Clearly, I may be on overload.

My mother-in-law knows that every self respecting cocktail hostess always has to have a mother load of whimsical cocktail napkins and fun bottle openers.

Every fashionista needs to get her trend on and what better way to do it? It's fun fashion, you don't care if it goes out of style or if you only wear it a couple of times. We all know not to pay too much for the overly trendy and to splurge on the classics. This store is definitely about the trend thrill.

What better way to enjoy candlelight while you are sipping an umbrella drink, in flipflops, by the water? My mother-in-law totally gets the picture.

Just one of the gifts from my mother. A pic of towel sets she got for my powder room. There are more towels but they all look the same. She knows me so well.

The blue box is always, always an AWESOME gift!!! The cheerleader started my Tiffany charm bracelet, last Christmas. She continued by adding the peace sign charm for my birthday. (Technically, since she can't fund this on her own, it's a joint collaboration between herself and Mr. Man)

What?? More bling??? My inlaws know me so well!!

Mr. Man knows of my love for all things, Rolling Stones. He knows my total love for, Some Girls, the Stones album that rocks my socks!! He found this framed gold record of Miss You and it is flanked by a picture of the early Stones and the older Stones and all of them have their sigs inside of the frame. He loves me so much.

So, this concludes birthday month, April 2010. The year that moi turned 46 and is loving life and loving all of you for loving me!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Miss You

This is me telling you that I am going to miss you. Beginning today, we are now in prom overload. And, as a junior, the cheerleader is serving on prom committee. And, as the cheerleader's parents, apparently we are expected to supply all things prom??? Not sure why the teacher in charge is so unorganized but we are going to be crazy trying to run and grab things for prom, help set up and it looks like fund a lot of the prom decor?? Anyway, I am taking off from today until next Monday, after prom. When I return, I will have a birthday summary and a prom recap...

Until we meet again, I will miss you!!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

New Attitude

Well, today is the day that has been building, all month!!!! It is the much talked about, much anticipated birthday of moi!!!! I have been enjoying every minute of this month and today is no different. As soon as I am done, here, I am headed out to pick up a book that came into the bookstore for me and I may do a little shoe shopping...this birthday girl LOVES her shoes!!!

In my ever changing moods, today is the day that I step the toe of my high heel pumps over the line. The line that seperates the first half of my 40s from the second half of my 40s. What do I say to this? Bring it on, baby, bring it on!!

I found the first part of my 40s to be so liberating and so full of finding myself and discovering what it meant to be a girl in her 40s. I am especially excited about discovering the second half of my 40s because it is going to be on a whole new playing ground. Soon, the cheerleader will be college bound and while that is a year away, she is very independent, now, and rarely home. I am redefining myself and my role as the hands on mom. I am needed, but in a new capacity. Mr. Man and I are still groovin' it and I am feeling at my best. Like anything is possible!!

So, to myself and all of my sister friends who are looking at the second side of 40, I think we need to kick it and kick it hard!! Go out and live, play, love and shop...we aren't our grandmothers' 40s...we've got a new attitude!!!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Rock On

Over the weekend, I came to a realization. I have come to notice that in my ever changing moods, I am addicted to any and all rockumentaries. The older I get, the more obsessed I become. I stop everything I am doing to watch one. Or, I record them for later viewing. I love rock movies, rockumentaries and anything about the music industry. I find it fascinating to learn the history of bands, to follow their story, to emerse myself in their music.

I have no idea where this comes from. I mean, obviously, I am a music lover. This should be clear to anyone who reads my blog. I have let music set the sound stage of my life since I was very young and listening to those little cut-out records that came on the back of cereal boxes. I know...what a GREAT idea!!! I used to try to eat the cereal really, really quickly just so I could cut the record off the back of the box.

I used to love to stand in front of my bedroom mirror, hairbrush in hand, belting out the tunes playing on my little RCA record player. I was going to be a rock star!! Or a fashion model!! Or a movie star!! Or, all three!! I would pretend I was a famous rock star going on the talk show circuit talking about my newest song, costumes and fab life. I had a vivid imagination!!! I wanted to wear costumes of fringe and glitter eyeshadow and platform boots. I wanted to be David Bowie, I guess, in his Glitter Rock/Glam Rock days.

When reality finally sunk in, I do not have the voice to be a rock star, I do not have the height to be a super model and Hollywood was not knocking at my door nor was my mother going to sign me up with a talent agency/model agency/voice teacher. So, basically, I was out of luck. But, the dream lived on and still does. In my mind, I AM a rock legend/runway model/movie star. A girl can dream and live in that dream world, right??

Anyway, all of those rock star dreams led me to my rock star/rock music obsessions of watching rockumentaries. I watch and then I usually download all music of that group. I get books on rock legends and read them. I like the stories of bands, of the girls who used to travel with the bands....whatever happened to the really cool girl groupies? Oh, they got older and probably I love to follow the rags to riches stories and sometimes back to rags or sometimes the tragic deaths that many of the great rock and rollers fell to.

Once the next rockumentary comes on, I find a new obsession and the cycle continues. I like just about every genre of music except for sticky sweet, sappy love songs. I love rock, bluegrass, old school country...way old school. Not a fan of the new country. I like classical, old school rap...way old school. Back when it was just coming on the scene. I love music of the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s all plays a part in my addiction. I like old groups and new groups. I don't like pre-packaged/commercial bands. I don't like bands that spring from the Disney channel. I like the hard core bands that have a hard core story to tell. And when that story is on, I am there to watch.

Yesterday, I woke up, early, and watched a mini rockumentary on, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and suddenly I was transported to the late 80s when I first started listening to them. So, I rediscovered them, yesterday, pulled out their old cds. I first had them on albums because cds were not the music vehicle, yet. So, I found my love, all over again, and today will be loading all of that love onto my Ipod.

Music is good!!! Sometimes it speaks to you, like it does me. Some people could care less about having music at all. I worry about those people. I wonder about them and how empty it must be to not light up their lives with the joy of music.

So, in honor of my rockumentary revelation that I do, indeed, have an addiction, I say....Rock On!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

I Want Candy

It's the weekend before my birthday and it's time to celebrate!! This song always, always makes me want to dance. I love the 80s band, Bow Wow Wow, and this video is perfect to kick off a fun day!!

It is especially fun on this movie soundtrack because this movie is just a great, old movie that centers around a New Year's Eve party and all of the mishaps that happen along the's fun to watch and fun to hear all of the great vintage 80s music...200's fun!!

So, these are my suggestions to you on this Saturday. Get out and kick up your heels!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Knockin' On Heaven's Door

Today is a Friday, no big deal. It's the Friday before my birthday happens. On this very Friday, nine years ago, I spent the day with my grandmother for the last time. On this Friday, every year, I wake up with both a smile on my face just thinking of that last day and of a bit of sadness that she is no longer, here. But, on that Friday, it was just the two of us, like old times, and that part takes away the sadness part.

In my ever changing moods, my birthday month is also the month my grandmother passed away. I know she had lived a very full life, was no spring chicken and thankfully did not live a long, drawn out illness, but she is missed by me on a regular basis. I am just glad that we spent that last Friday, together. And, that year, on that Friday, it happened to be my birthday. That made it even more special.

My grandmother was the constant in my life, growing up. No matter what chaos orbitted around my family and home, I knew that my grandparents lived just up the street and were a quick bike ride or walk away. She was my biggest champion and fan. There were other grandchildren but I was her favorite. Everyone knew it and it became a running family joke. She never got angry with me, she never scolded. She made sure that her front door was always unlocked for me to enter. I was always, Pammy, to her. Never Pam or Pamela. On her last day, I was still her Pammy.

She was a feisty little woman. She wasn't very tall but she was very mighty. She didn't take crap from anyone. She could be so nice and laughing, one minute, but if a friend or person rubbed her the wrong way, they were toast. In a very subtle way but that person knew that their time had come and they were no longer welcome under her friendship umbrella. No drama. Just the raise of an eyebrow, a snide comment, and she was out of there.

She used to let me sit at her makeup vanity for hours. One of the bedrooms in their house was all about her. Her closets, her own little pink bathroom and entire wall of a giant mirror and huge vanity table that my grandfather had built, just for her. I can still remember the scent of Shalimar perfume, the ruby redness of all of her lipsticks, her drawers of white gloves, in all lengths. Her trays of jewlery. All there for me to sit and admire and play with.

Her closets were stuffed with clothes and shoes. She loved shoes. And fur coats. She was a clothes girl. it any wonder where I get the same tendencies? But, she was never flashy. She abhorred flashiness. To see her out and about, she sometimes looked like a little bag lady. That is what I loved about her. She didn't care if she went shopping looking like a million bucks or if she went shopping looking like something the cat drug in. She was the same person, either way, take her or leave her.

She and I would spend many hours drinking ice cold RC Colas in frozen metal tumblers. (It was the 70s and we put metal tumblers in the freezer) We liked to drink these icy drinks while eating store bought iced oatmeal cookies. She wasn't a baker. She would buy all baked goods and then try to make them look like she had been baking for hours and put everything in her big cookie jars. When we weren't drinking RCs and eating cookies, we were drinking iced tea (our fav drink) and eating chocolate candy bars. (Clearly, I had not entered into healthy eating, yet.) We would sit out in her big swing and and just watch the day roll by with our drinks and our junk food.

Saturday mornings, when I was young, she would pick me up and take me with her to her Saturday hair appointments. I would sit and listen to the grown up lady gossip in the beauty shop while I drank ice cold Cokes from the cooler in the shop. After her hair appointments, we would lunch at a downtown tea room and then stop at the downtown Woolworth's so that I could pick out another outfit for my Barbies.

I went to her when I was happy, I went to her when I was upset. If someone had wronged me, she would have a few choice words for them and then she would call them a funny name and we would just laugh it off and everything was better.

In my adult years, she was proud of everything that I did. She loved the cheerleader so much! Had my grandmother lived for a few more years, I am sure that the cheerleader would have been spoiled in the same way I had been because she was a part of me and that made her special to my grandmother.

In the month that we found out my grandmother was sick, you really wouldn't have known she was sick. She still insisted on having me take her to get her hair done, she still insisted on her makeup and she took up a new habit of using profanity. I guess it was one last thing she wanted to try before she left. One day, she wanted to go to lunch so I picked her up and took her and my mother to lunch. It was a bright and chilly spring day. The next day, she was taken to the hospital and stayed there for a little over a week. She slept the entire time and we each took turns sitting with her.

On the Thursday, before that Friday, I left in the late evening hours to go and sit with her in the dark hospital. I remember sitting very still and just staring at her. The next day they moved her to a private facility because they said she wasn't going to come out of this state. That day was my birthday. I woke up with a heavy heart and decided that the only person I wanted to spend my special day with was my grandmother. I was fully prepared to sit, in silence, and watch her sleep. When I walked into her new room she was sitting up in bed! She was asking for iced tea!! When she saw me, she said, Happy Birthday, Pammy....we sat and chatted and drank iced tea and she knew the date and time and kept trying to get me to go out and enjoy my day. It was the best gift of any birthday. I left with a song in my heart.

She left us a few days, later. It was sad but it was her time. While my heart was sad and hurting, I did have that happy day with her, though. My last memory of us, together. It happened on my birthday and it was the greatest gift coming from one of the greatest gifts I could have been grandmother.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Sunshine Day

If you were born in the mid 60s and then old enough to be a fan of the Brady Bunch in the early 70s, chances are this song was one of your favs! It just sort of screams summer fun, long days playing outside, riding bikes, not a care in the world. Summers of the early 70s....bliss.

I started thinking about this song because of an ongoing conversation on my online board. One friend needed ideas for outside games to play when her family of nieces and nephews come to visit. We were all throwing ideas out and she already had a few of her own. Then, as most of our conversations go on that board, it turned silly and someone brought up the old game of the 60s and 70s called, Yard Darts or Jarts. This brought on a lot of laughter and comments and it made me think back to those carefree summer days of the early 70s and the dangerous toys we were armed with. In my ever changing moods, this brings back so many funny memories and so many thoughts of...what were our parents thinking????

Back then, there was no sign of what we now call, Helicopter Parents. It was more like, Out To Lunch Parents. But, it was the 60s and 70s and that is how parenting was done. No babying, coddling, covering you in helmets and padding just to ride a tricycle. We were a rough and tumble generation. And, let's face it, if you could successfully dodge a Jart, well, you were destined to survive whatever came your way.

Which brings me to my rambling thought of the day...the toys our parents gave us to play with, totally unsupervised and totally potentially dangerous.

I can only speak for the toys that my brother and I had. I often wonder how we didn't burn the house down with the combo of the Shrinky Dinks that you baked on metal cookie sheets in a real oven, no adult present. I am not talking the safer version with the actual safety machine to bake them in. Two kids, hot oven, metal trays, standing on chairs to remove hot metal trays out of hot oven. One time I nicked a friend's forehead with the corner of the hot metal tray. No worries, we just moved on to a safer toy. Hey, the McDonald's cooking griddle...for kids!!!! No parental help needed to heat that baby up and throw some sort of meat on the HOT griddle and let it sizzle....who needed a parent for the hot grease splattering all over? Not us. And, when you were tired of the inside toys that were all made of metal with sharp corners, you could move outside.

Outside, in the neighborhood, in the summer, with no parents. Where WERE our parents?? I mean, in the summer, you woke up, had a breakfast of Cheerios or Freakies cereal, a glass of Tang and you were out the door by 9am. On your bike. Free as a bird. In elementary school. You took off on your bike with no helmet and often times there were a lot of spills on your bike. Bloody knees and elbows? Hey, there would always be a kid to run in and grab a Band-Aid or two and you were back on your way. The assorted games that adults left us with were, Jarts, those heavey iron horseshoes, REAL archery sets with really pointy arrows. I took an arrow to the head, once, and let me tell you...a helmet would have been greatly appreciated. Jarts became a game of near death. We would all start out playing a nice game but then one wise guy would always decide that the nice game was over and start winging Jarts all over the place. Running and hiding was the best tactic until you could safely get to your bike and pedal off.

You would go home for lunch. A lunch of peanut butter and jelly and a glass of chocolate milk. Back then, you just ate the jazzed up, snazzy pre-packaged lunches. Once you were properly nourished, you got back on your bike for more neighborhood fun.

At this point of the day, our moms were emersed in soap operas, coffee, Lambrusco, Merv Griffin, gossiping on the telephone, making dinner. Who had the time to worry over what we all were out doing?

If we got bored with toys, we would do stunts with our bikes. We would always need to build ramps for this so kids would start hauling pieces of wood, nails, hammers...again, I have to ask, did our moms NOT see us all running out of our garages with these items?? We would build our own ramps. No waiting for a dad to come home from work to supervise. There would always be some accident when the hammering would start. One kid would always get hurt and cry. We would dare him NOT to go home and tell on what we were doing. Just wrap a shirt around the wound and take care of it, later.

Those were the days of carefree and dangerous fun. What were a few stitches and injuries? We could handle it. We were the tough kids of the 60s and 70s. You eased the burn on your hands, tended to the Jart wounds, bandaged your skinned knees and if you were lucky enough to get stitches, you would come back to the neighborhood with great stories of the injury and the hospital! We were a tough group of kids who survived without the constant watch of parents, the dangerous toys and the activities that led to a possible hospital run. It was definitely, always, a sunshine day.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Why Can't We Be Friends?

My ever changing moods seems to do a lot of talking about friends and friendships. But, that's a good thing!! The older I get, I do treasure my friends and to me, they are like family. Maybe it's because I grew up with very little family or a family in constant chaos so from a young age, I made my friends my family. Anyway, friends are important to me and that is why you will read a lot about celebrating your friends, here.

However, there seems to be a new trend and I think I must have missed the memo. The memo stating that many women of middle age all decided to go back to junior high and start the girl fighting and cattiness, all over again. Or, do I live in a frienship bubble and this has been going on for ages and ages? I don't get it and I hope that it's a trend that meets a quick demise.

I think it is hard for me to understand because first and foremost, I am not a game player. I never have been. I think I was absent on the day when they taught elementary age girls the art of game playing/manipulating/and general pot stirring. Maybe because I grew up in a neighborhood of boys and watched them interact. Boys didn't stab each other in the back or act all catty or hurt their friend's feelings. And if they did, there was a big brawl and it was over in a matter of minutes and friends, again. I learned to just be nice and walk on. I didn't learn how to go about trying to make every female you come into contact with miserable.

My train of thought, today, comes from a lot of my friends being hurt by so called friends or co-workers or family members. I have had a lot of conversations and emails, recently, from friends who were hurt by another female. I don't get it...why can't people just be friends? You don't have to be best friends forever but what happened to being friendly? Why does everything have to bring out a catfight or a snarkiness or an attitude? Having lived through junior high, I didn't know that you were expected to revisit the trenches in your mid 40s. I didn't know that so many friendships come with a new set of rules that would take a 13 year old girl to explain.

I will admit...I am not the friendship angel. I have had my part in friend breakups. But, usually because I get tired of playing their game or because I didn't have the time to praise/coddle/acknowledge every deed that they did on the 24/7 plan that they needed. It doesn't make me a bad friend and I am the first to step up to a friend in need, a friend who is down, a friend who is mad or a friend who wants to drink a cocktail with me. But, I am probably not the friend who who is going to play the new game of The 40 Year Old Woman As A Junior High Student. I am a good friend and a loyal friend and if you tell me a secret, I will take it with me to the grave. So, why can't that be the new code of conduct for the friendships of the middle age group? Why are so many women so eager to tear their friends down? Is it that hard to just be happy? Is it that hard to just be a friend? No strings, no sucking up...just pure friendship?

I have many groups of friends and many groups of women I am involved with. I cherish these women and I hope that with each friend that they have relationships with, also cherishes them. If we all stopped for one second and just got over ourselves and took a deep breath and looked at the women in front of us, maybe everyone really could just be friends. Or at least friends in your own circle. It has to start somewhere. There needs to be a new memo that goes out and reads...Women Of Their 40s Unite!! Be a friend and not a foe. Give a smile and not a snarl. Walk away instead of whining. Give a hug instead of a catfight. This is the class that needs to be taught and the memo that needs to be sent.

Be a friend who expects nothing in return. Or expect a friendship that enriches and doesn't tear down. Remember, to have friends is to be a friend. A real friend. A real, honest, nice, encouraging friend. In my ever changing moods, my wish for all of my dear friends is that they can eliminate the bad and incorporate the good in their friends. Maybe if instead of trying to duplicate junior high in our mid 40s, we should try to duplicate kindergarten in our 40s. When we learned the real lessons about how friends should be treated. Just think about it...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


This past weekend was get away weekend for some of my online friends and me! I posted about it, last week, and was so excited to get away and roam around with my galpals. It was great fun filled with great laughs, great talks, great shopping, great food and great wine! Nothing says a girl weekend away like the combo of friends, food, wine and fun!

I think that it is always so refreshing and renewing to get away with galpals. I think it is essential for moms and wives. Once you hit the open road, you are your own person. No questions, no needs, no making dinner, no worries. You have left the everyday behind and are headed for a day or two of carefree abandon! It's good to recharge with great keeps you sane and it lets you peek into the side of you that still exists outside of being a wife, a mom, a caretaker of pets, the volunteer, the fundraiser planner, the woman who wears all of the hats. For just a day or so, you are...YOU...the fab and wonderful galpal.

Don't get me wrong...I absolutely love all of the hats that I wear but when I can slip away to visit with friends for a day or two, I get so excited!! I love the friendships that have been built over the years and since we have now all been meeting up for years, we know husbands, kids, lives, back stories, new stories, upsets, worries, happiness. Over the years, we have watched each of us go through different things and have all supported, cheered, cried and laughed. There were only a fraction of the larger group that usually meets and the missing friends were missed. We love our whole online community and one day, my greatest hope, is that we have a big get-away where all of my online pals meet at the same time!!!

In my ever changing moods,girlfriends are an important part of my life and roaming with them is essential, to me, at times. I hope that they all know how much I love them and how each of them holds a special place in my heart. The online friends that I have grown to love and to share my life with are the goodness and the light that everyone needs in life!!

Go out and plan a galpal day or a weekend or a week...roam with your friends, give them all a big hug, share a glass or two of wine and bask in the happiness!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

It's A Beautiful Day

Friday!! Not only my favorite day of the week but it's even more special, today, because I am going away on an overnight to meet up with some of my pals that I have met, online, over the years!! We are becoming quite good and planning little meet ups and we come from all over. There will be lots of talking, laughing, shopping, coffee drinking, wine consuming, eating, talking, talking and did I mention talking?? It's what we do best when we are all together.

So, today's weather looks a little on the rainy side but who cares..I don't mind dodging a bit of rain to spend time with my galpals!! It's a beautiful day because I am spending it with people I love!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Leave The Pieces

The last few days have been busy ones for me. I am juggling a few different projects and trying to organize and brainstorm something else. At the same time, lots of outside work has been needed on Maggie's Farm so I have been a busy girl. My grandfather was the one who instilled in me the importance of being busy, working with your hands, always doing your own work and to take pride in your work. He used to tell me that busy hands would keep you out of trouble and that idle hands would always lead to trouble. He made sure I was busy every minute of spare time when I was growing He was a good guy and to this day, there isn't a minute when I am doing yardwork that I don't think of him and his helpful hints on passing the time while you are doing tedious yard projects. One of his hints was always to use this time to let your mind plan the next activity. I tend to plan a dinner party or a cocktail soiree or a fab outfit. But, a lot of times my mind will start thinking about stuff that is going on in my life or the cheerleader's life or Mr. Man's life. It can be very helpful to be outside, working with your hands and thinking your way through different things in your life.

I had to be outside, a lot, yesterday, after I was on the phone with someone that is helping me on a project. We started talking, off topic, and our conversation blurred into an event that happened, last year. It involved parents and a lot of stupidity and a lot of anger and a lot of hurt. One of those situations that if one or more of the parents had taken a second to realize they were wrong, or bothered to get the right information, or quit worrying about trying to be the big cheese, it all could have been avoided. But, you know as well as I know that many people do not let cooler heads prevail. And, last year's target happened to be me. I am not going into specifics or details. But, it hurt, it caused friendships to be re-evaluated and it took a TON of soul searching on my part to be able to let myself come back around. I have been able to put myself in a place of neutrality where once had been great friendships. I am able to smile instead of cry. I am able to hold civil conversations without me wanting to stab eyes out with a cocktail swizzle stick.

The person who is helping me on this project mentioned that I am a bigger person than she could ever be for putting things into perspective and carrying on. After I got off the phone and started my work, outside, I let my mind think about this statement and what it meant. In my ever changing moods, I was both flattered and saddened. I was flattered both by being thought of in this way and flattered that this person actually took the time to notice the silent pain I was in, last year. See, I am the kind of person that will internalize. I don't lash out, I don't let off a can of whoop ass, I don't throw hysterical scenes. But, I do feel hurt. Maybe more so since I take it all inside of me. I refused, last year, to stoop to the lower level of some. I chose to look on, head held high, in public. Of course, behind closed doors I was an upset mess but to the public and in front of those certain people, I uttered not a word. But, I was also saddened at her comment. Sad that because of the way some people chose to handle a situation, friendships were lost. I can now talk to them and help them and console them. But, I will never forget the knife in my back. So, because of that, I cannot be the carefree friend. I have to be the guarded, used to be a friend, kind of girl.

I kept going over the phrase...You are a bigger person...I am not a bigger person. I think age and maturity and maybe a bit of wisdom has shown me when a battle is worth fighting and when a battle is worth just walking away from and letting the crazies all battle it out. Stepping back, walking away are the hardest options in my opinion. They call for a cool head and a calm manner. These qualities are seriously lacking in so many people, these days. So many times, people are so quick to want to fight and be heard and to look important. They don't seem to care how they make another person feel or that they are shattering a friendship or who gets hurt. They want to be the one on top, the top dog, the one running the show. Does it make me the bigger person because I choose to step back? No. I am not the bigger person. I have just gotten really good at picking up the pieces after everyone explodes. I have gotten really good at talking myself through things and moving on. I have found the ability to be friendly but not best friends.

In my ever changing moods, the crazy people can act crazy and hurtful and leave the pieces because there will always be people like me to put the pieces back together and move on. I may emerge with less friends but at least I emerge with some dignity.

So, what my grandfather didn't realize all of those years ago when he was busy keeping my hands busy, is that he also taught me that while working, I am able to solve many problems of the world. Well, at least the problems in my world. Who knows, maybe if we had a Busy Hands Day, it would give everyone a time to reflect on their actions, what they could have done differently and how they can correct the problems that they created. The pieces could all be fixed and everyone could be happy...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Last night we had Mr. Man's parents over for dinner. They spend most of the winter months away and it has become tradition to have them over for dinner on their first night back. It is always good to see them home, safe and sound. The cheerleader gets really, really excited to have them back home. As families go, we are a close knit group with his parents. They are still the cutest couple, high school sweethearts, and still so totally in love. They raised two sons with the same amount of love. Everyday when I witness the love and compassion between Mr. Man and the cheerleader, I am reminded of how well he was brought up and mentally, I thank his parents a million times over.

Having the honor of raising a daughter is such a gift. It is also a challenge and often times you walk a fine line of the ever changing moodiness of a daughter. One minute, she is that baby and toddler of sweetness and light and in the blink of an eye, she is a teen full of sweetness, light and a bit of storminess added. Mr. Man is great at navigating the sunny days as well as the stormy days. He never loses his patience with her and always teaches and encourages with love. When I watch the two of them, I sometimes get a bit teary. It makes me so happy and fills my heart with such love to know that she is indeed being raised as a daughter by a dad who loves and cares so deeply.

I have noticed that in the past year or so, their relationship has shifted a bit. She used to seem to gravitate towards me, when she was younger, because I was the one who was always here and provided her needs and wants at all times. Now that she is independent, she doesn't need quite the amount of care from me but she now turns to Mr. Man for her questions and needs. They are so much alike in personality. Both strong and hard driven. Both very Type A. She listens to him when he gives advice. You can tell that she respects him as a dad and as a person. I can tell that she is learning from him even though sometimes she seems like she is in La La Land. He tries to father her using examples from his youth and his growing up. He tries to pass his knowledge of life, music, cars, work ethics and his general views on to her. Many times when I look at her or hear her say something, it dawns on me that she is definitely her father's daughter. She is a tough cookie, a fighter and never down for the count. He has instilled these qualities in both of us.

Being a daughter that grew up mostly without a father, I know how very important this time is for the cheerleader. Mr. Man is giving her such valuable lessons that will last a lifetime. He is building a strong confindence in her that nobody will ever be able to take away. I don't know if either of them really realizes that these building blocks are her foundation that she will build and base relationships on for the rest of her life.

She's a good girl that comes from a good guy who came from great parents. They gave him the gift of growing up with love and in turn, he is doing the same. In my ever changing moods, I know that the cheerleader will be fine in life because she has the heart of her dad. He will be her champion no matter how old she gets. The circle of love that his parents started will continue the pattern that they set a long time ago.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Fall Back Down

Today, I had to take a drive to my mother's house. She is out of town and I go over and check mail and water plants and keep an eye on things. It's a beautiful day so I put the sunroof back and cranked the tunes. I had my Ipod, as always, and this song came on as I was approaching my old stomping grounds. I used this song as my Facebook song, this morning, and when it came on as I was driving through old familiar roads, it just sort of spoke to me.

"If I fall back down, you're gonna help me back up again
If I fall back down, you're gonna be my friend"

I love these lyrics and in my ever changing moods, they really do ring true when you drive through my old neighborhood and surrounding areas. I always knew that our neighborhoods were special but I know that, even more, in my adult years. I think it took maturity to look back and reflect and feel the love. It was special and I was glad to be a part of it.

Our area was called the West End of our town. It wasn't made up of neighborhoods, per se, but it was more like a burrow of sorts. I actually did live in one of the suburbs but the West End encompassed so much more area. We all centered around our little school that housed grades K-8. We were one of three schools that fed into one high school. Our school was the smallest of the three and maybe that is why we all built such great and lasting friendships. There weren't a lot of us so we all sort of banded, together.

My mother still lives in the house where I grew up. I get to go to the West End quite a bit and I love driving around all of the little roads where so many of my pals used to live. I can drive up and down each street and have a million stories of what happened on each street when we were kids. I can still picture the parties at houses when parents were away, the houses that used to have moms who would always invite you in and give you something to eat, the houses that had moms most likely to call the police on us, the cool moms, the uptight moms. It was the 70s and moms were always home. Dads always were at work. Kids rode bikes in huge bike clubs that we formed. There was a little corner, locally owned, grocery. We would all ride bikes to the store and buy candy and sodas and hang outside of the store as more kids rode up on bikes.

There was a baseball field where the boys and girls had their games, each summer. I can still remember all of our uniforms. The school is still there with a few updates and changes. There was a wooded area, behind the school, that was great for exploring but it was torn up so that houses could be built. Still sad if you ask me...I wish they could have fought harder to preserve that area.

It seemed like even on the most boring days, there would be something we could all find to do. Nobody knew a stranger in our little area. You could stop and shoot the breeze with just about anyone and you always felt welcome. We grew up using the sun and the moon as our signals that it was time to head home for dinner or for the evening. We were not a generation of cell phones so once we left the house, we were out of contact with our parents. But, in the West End, you always felt safe. Parents watched out for you even if you weren't their kid. Parents did that back then. When my dad left, I was too embarrassed to even tell my friends. Other parents knew, of course. But I didn't want to talk about it to my pals. One dad sensed that and never said a word about it but always made sure I had a ride to a practice or to a game. It's just what the parents did in the West End.

Once we all were older and gave up our bikes for cars, we still all drove around the West End. Still stopping at houses. I think we became more annoying to some parents, at that point. We had cars and we blared our music and in the summers, a party could always be found at a couple of the houses.

We laugh now and label those of us who were born in the West End, the originals. Then we call the ones who moved in, later, the newcomers. The people who lived just out of the West End's territory but still went to our school, we tease them and call them posers. Mr. Man was always a honorary West Ender because he started out in the West End, moved to a different school in our district, but always came back to hang with his buddies in the West End.

The older I get, the more that place makes me smile. Driving through the streets is like flipping through a scrapbook of memories.

Yesterday, some old West End buddies and I were laughing about some funny things and it really made me think back. Some of my lifelong friends started out as kindergarten friends in the West End. We are in our mid 40s, now. That speaks volumes. I feel so lucky that Mr. Man and I share so much of a rich history that started in the West End.

And, as a shout out to all of those guy pals and Mr. Man...not a lot of neighborhoods can boast about this but I my eyes, the guys that came out of the West End or started as a West Ender are all the kind of guys that you want in your corner. Good guys, all of them.

If you were to fall down, they would all be right there to help you get back up. Everything we learned, we learned from the West End.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Girls Just Want To Have Fun!

It's Saturday and this girl has been planning a mini girl get-away for next weekend!! A couple of my online galpals and I are meeting up for a day of lunch, shopping, coffee, cocktails, dinner and lots of talking and laughing!! It's just an overnight and then brunch the next morning with another online pal but we tend to cram a whole lot in to just a few hours.

In my ever changing moods, I am so excited to meet up with my pals and just have fun!

Today is Saturday, the fun day of the week....just go out and have fun!!

And, as if my birthday month was not exciting, enough, I am also eagerly awaiting the release of this book, on my birthday!! I have this author's entire collection of books and I was a huge, huge, HUGE fan of Sex And The here we go, back to where it all began and I am excited to visit the young Carrie....before New York and before she was old enough to drink her first Cosmo and before her vast wardrobe and her shoes and her very fab life!! It was a show that celebrated the best kind of friends....girlfriends!!!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Since You've Been Gone

This past week, Mr. Man was out of town and the cheerleader and I stayed behind. She has a lot going on with school and with it being her junior year, college testing starts on this Saturday, she is on prom committee, cheer tryouts and the one million other things she is involved in, we decided it was best not to take her out of school, right now, for a vacation. Plus, our school gets no spring break so we didn't even have the week off that everyone else gets. Anyway, Mr. Man travels a lot without us and it is no big deal. It gives everyone a bit of a holiday of sorts. And, I go away without Mr. Man, at times, and again...we all enjoy a nice break.

In my ever changing moods, I love Mr. Man with all of my heart and we have a lot of fun, together, and we also travel a lot together and as a family. But, sometimes, that little bit of downtime from cooking dinner, doing laundry, etc. is a nice break. So, this week has been a combination of letting me get things done but at the same time, letting me kick back and not do a whole heck of a lot. It's nice to recharge every couple of months.

Today, Mr. Man returns and I am so excited!! The vacation was nice but I get so excited on his return home. He is missed around here when he is gone. His humor, his smiling face, his hugs, his prescence. Things get very quiet around here with him gone and while it's nice for recharging mental batteries, it's great to have him and his whirlwind self back where he belongs.

So, I am a bustle of cleaning/mopping/laundry/organizing energy, today. The cheerleader and I will pick him up at the airport, later, and we are both excited to see the man in our life!!

Since he's been gone, I have missed him very much!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Love Is In The Air

Well, it is spring and the sun is shining and the temperatures are rising and all is blooming. Maybe even a little love is blooming in the ever changing moods household. But, shhhhhh, you didn't hear it from me.

I wrote, last week, about my youth and how my galpals and I would get so giddy with the spring weather and new love interests on the horizon. Well, even though times have changed and we live in a completely different world now, some things do remain the same. Like, if you closed your eyes and pretended that your teen was talking on the phone instead of texting on the phone, and accepting a date for Saturday night in this text, you could be transported back to the spring, circa 1978. When you see that teen tell you about this upcoming date with a big, goofy grin and a totally blushing face, you would SWEAR it was your youth, circa 1978. Spring, giddy girl crushes on boys, endless possibilities....the good stuff that never changes.

I know that the cheerleader would disown me to ever know I was writing about this silent glimpsing I did into her life, last night. But, since she thinks my blogging is lame and doesn't even know the name of it and since she and I are not Facebook friends and she is not a fan of my Facebook pages of my blog...I am SAFE!!

Anyway, sometimes, in my ever changing moods and my role as the mother, my job is to guide, instruct, love, discipline, and give the best advice in the world. (Ok, I am the only one who thinks it's the best advice. The cheerleader thinks it is lame advice) But, sometimes, your role as the mother finds you in a situation where you need to sit, compose yourself, try not to bust out laughing, blurt out a big comment or to show any emotion, one way or the other. If I have learned nothing else in my role as mother, it is this....NEVER SHOW YOUR TRUE EMOTION. Show the opposite of how you REALLY feel and that will sway the teen in what they think is the opposite of what you want them to do but what really happens is that their opposite is exactly where you want them. And they won't realize this happened until much later.

So, the past couple of weeks have been frought with prom dress shopping, prom shoes and jewels shopping, limo booking, dinner reservations, prom hair appointment booking, and many revised lists of who else will be in the limo along with her and her best pals. Like, um, Then, there is this long list of picking a date protocol. Gone are the days when I was of prom age and the guy actually asked a girl and voila, you were prom dates. It's so strategic, now, that you would think the girls were planning peace talks with a foreign country. So, yesterday, finally, finally, the prom date was secured. Ok, last step, out of the way.

The prom date was an issue because a month ago, the boyfriend from last year had resurfaced with a renewed interest in the cheerleader. He stated that it would be great if they went to prom, together. To preface this, the last year's boyfriend, or, LYBF, was a cool dude. I liked him, a lot, has a lot going on for him, comes from a good family, has really cool interests and is just a cool kid. Until he broke up with her via a text/semi-phone call. And, the cheerleader, like her mother, does not do well with those kinds of things. We have no room for that kind of behavior and we are not likely to give second chances to people who cross us. So, LYBF, has been a sore subject since that time. In a bit of fairness, the cheerleader is a tough cookie. She is a very focused and determined young woman. She will not coddle a male ego. She expects it to be her way or the highway. She is just not a dream date...she is more like a drill sargeant date. And, I like this kind of gumption. But, I think it got a bit overwhelming for LYBF. Plus, it was the middle of a highly dramatic cheer season and nothing was going to end well for the LYBF.

Anyway, when he resurfaced, and mentioned the prom, the cheerleader flat out said, she would not go to the prom with him if he considered it a date. He took his ego and moved on and asked someone else. The cheerleader got a different prom date, too. Last night, the cheerleader told me she has a dinner/movie date for Saturday night. With, LYBF....OH THE LAUGHTER that wanted to emerge from my body. I tried not to fall of my chair, I continued to bite my tongue and managed to say, Oh, that should be fun....(inside I was aching to laugh)

So, I can only chalk all of this young love/not love up to the fact that it is spring and love is in the air...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Running On Empty

This was definitely my theme song, yesterday. I just never did get it together in the motivation/productivity department, at all. So unlike the person I usually am. Yesterday, I felt like someone had covered me in cement and I spent the day trying to break out and find my energy!

It started when I slept until almost 9:30am....those who know me well are picking themselves up off the floor after reading that. In my ever changing moods, one thing that has never changed about me is that I am an early riser. I like to be up and about between 5am and 5:30am. And, those who knew me even back when I was young, know that I have been this way when I was really young. I was the odd teen who never slept in. I used to stay at my bff's house in high school and think of ways or reasons to wake her up at 7am. I am and have always been an annoying and spunky morning person. My bff was the complete opposite. She was a night owl and a late sleeper. I am sure it was a challenge to have me as a friend.

I think I come from a long line of early risers. My grandfather was an early riser. He was usually up by 4:30am, had his coffee and breakfast and then got more accomplished before the sun came up than most people accomplish in a day. My grandmother, not so much. She hated mornings and grumbled until the sun came up. My mother inherited my grandfather's early gene and it was nothing for her to be up, showered, breakfasted and running the sweeper at 6am. This may have also been her excuse to make sure there would be no sleeping in even if you felt like sleeping in. Nothing like a loud sweeper banging into your bedroom door to make you feel relaxed....and, on the summer days when my mother would be at work, my grandfather would come to our house (they lived around the corner) and begin ringing the doorbell at 7am to let us know that he would be waiting, outside, with our list of jobs for the day. I come from a family who liked to get everything done by 10am.

When I was in college, the dreaded 8am classes didn't really even bother me. Hey, if I was awake, why not go to class and get it over with? More time to play, er, I mean study, later in the day. When I was a flight attendant, my schedule was so crazy that some months, I had no clue if it was night or day. Once I could hold a set schedule, I opted for the 6am sign ins. I know, I know, annoying. But, again, if I was awake, why not head to the airport and work a quick jaunt from Los Angeles to New York?

The other annoying thing is that when I wake up, it takes me no time to go from 0-60 in a flash. I can have chirpy conversations, I sing songs in my head, and this is all before coffee. I am the annoying one in my family, now, as always. Mr. Man doesn't like to sleep in but it does take him a bit to want to have a conversation. Some mornings I forget and start chattering about and then I catch his eyes rolling back in his head.

So, yesterday, was so odd. Getting up late after the sun was up and drinking coffee in a whole other part of the day. I felt a bit off, all day. I felt like I was 5 hours behind schedule, all day. And, I never gained my momentum. Finally, I just accepted the fact that it was a day going nowhere and then I embraced it. I went to a parental cheer meeting that made me want to poke needles in my eyes and then came home and let it all go. I accepted the fact that I had a nothing kind of day and I overslept. Maybe my body was telling me that it was running on empty and needed to refuel.

In fact, I know that is what happened because today I popped up at 5:30am, made coffee, got loads of laundry started and all of the other mundane things that take place in my ever changing moods. And, if felt GREAT to be back!!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Can't Explain

Well, this is a nice title, huh? I am sure that it sounds very vague. Hopefully, when I am done with my rambling thoughts, today, it will make sense. If not, I can't control the thoughts in my head so we'll just go with it.

Anyway, in my ever changing moods, the song, Can't Explain, is The Who, I was at dinner at a good friend's house on Saturday night, and our dinner music was in the background and it was, The Who. So, see....dinner, friends, The Who all equal..Can't Explain.

I realize that I post a lot about my friends and how much they all mean to me. What I neglect to write about is why I hold them all so dear. I mean, we all have friends, right? Who doesn't need the love and compainship of a few good friends? And, I am not an insecure person who cannot stand the thought of my own private company but my friends really are my life.

I posted, before, about my father leaving. It was such an odd thing to have happen. It was strange and sad all rolled into one. I let myself be sad, then I worked things out in my head, and then I moved on. Well, I mean, how can a 13 year old move on, really? I just mean, I dealt and then I rejoined my life in progress. What I wouldn't realize until years later, is how I started to make my friends and their families, my own family. Not in a stalking kind of way. And, I was never an emotionally destructive child of divorce. I just liked going to the homes of my friends where normalcy seemed to reign. The older I became and as we all started to grow up and away from our family units, I kept my friends as my family circle. Of course, as you grow older, you leave a lot of those friends behind and everyone carves their own path. But then there are the few that remained and stayed a part of my life from then until the present. Mr. Man has a few of his best pals from high school that are still in our life and we consider them family. When they come through the door to visit, I immediately am drawn back to earlier times and I see them with long hair, lots of laughter, fast cars and I have so many recollections of good times.

Growing up, I was part of a neighborhood of boys. There were girls but I guess we just didn't have a whole lot in common and I wasn't allowed to take off on my bike, yet, to pedal to the neighborhoods where my early gal pals lived. So, I hung with the guys and was always a pal. Once I hit high school, I met a friend who would remain a good friend even to this day. We parted for quite a few years but recently found our way back to one another. We now chat like it was just yesterday when we cruised around in her little white Mustang and drove our parents crazy.

So, all this is leading up to the point of my post. Friends are my family along with Mr. Man and the cheerleader. I mean, of course we have parents and such who are our family, too, but I am focusing on the friends who become family.

Now, back to Saturday's involved two good friends of mine. Both from quite a few years ago. It was a lovely evening of drinks and such on the porch and then dinner in a cozy dining room, wine, The Who in the background. It was growing dark and the flicker of candles was bright. We laughed, discussed things, cleared the table and then huddled in the inviting kitchen. All lit with candles and we talked for a couple more hours. The one friend, I have known for 10 years and we share quite a lot. My other friend, is from even farther back. We chatted a lot about how the three of us share a history, how the one friend shared a history with Mr. Man and how that friend and a few other friends knew Mr. Man and me from high school. It was just an enchanted evening. And, I was filled with a familiar love as I sat and chatted the night away.

Friends that become family are the best kind of friends. Friends that have known you over the years and are still around are such a comfort. I feel fortunate that Mr. Man and I have such a wonderful extended family.

So, yes, I can't explain, I can only share the love.

(As always, I try to keep everyone's names as either a nickname or a no name. If I don't mention specific names in a blog post, it is because I do not want people feeling uncormfortable when I write about them. So, if I don't post names of friends and family, I am thanking you, my friends, for respecting that, too...)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Beautiful Girl

I cannot believe it is the weekend, already!! I had to skip a few days of blogging, this past week and I missed not being able to share the ramblings of my ever changing moods. It was a crazy week and I was not finding myself with much alone time for blogging. Anyway, it's Saturday and it's the weekend and a great time to kick back with a movie and just relax.

The movie I am suggesting is a great coming of age friend flick. I am big on coming of age friend flicks. I guess they remind me of my friends over the years and how each friend holds a special place in my heart for different reasons. I had dinner with two friends, last night, and it was great fun to laugh and catch up on their lives. I am going to another friend's house for dinner, tonight. Lots of laughs are sure to take place along with her amazing cooking skills and a bit of the vino. I am lucky to have so many old and new friends in my life. I love you all!!

When I am sitting around and shooting the breeze with all of my pals, a sense of happiness creeps up and just seeing their faces makes me smile. They are all beautiful girls, to me, inside and out. I hope they all know how beautiful they really are.

So, enjoy the song and if you have the time, check out the movie...and treasure your friendships!!

Here Comes Your Man

Well, this week seems like we have finally, finally got a handle on that really great spring weather that makes you think spring is finally, here, and summer is close behind! It's been the kind of sunny weather that lets you drive with a sunroof open, a convertible top down or at least all of your windows down. It lets you wear flipflops and shorts and tshirts and pull out your summer bags. This kind of weather always finds me with a hair tie around my wrist as an extra accessory so I can quickly pull my hair back for any impromptu convertible drives. So, in my ever changing moods, when it's time for the hair tie around my wrist, it makes me so happy to hit the road.

Spring weather also makes me remember years and years of spring crushes. Remember the days? Spring would hit and preteen hormones hit and the fun of spring would begin. My friends and I would spend hours talking about our crushes of the season. Or, maybe some of us had boyfriends at the time spring would roll around and we would consider being free agents for spring and summer. All silly stuff. All fun girl stuff.

These days, I still get a spring crush on Mr. Man. I mean, I love him all the time but in the spring, he has been my crush for years and years and years. I still get that swooning crush feeling and then all over again, he becomes my man. My man of spring and summer. The crush of my dreams. He is not a lover of winter. I should say that when the end of October hits, he starts counting the days to the beginning of March. When the weather finally warms and blooms and the sun is out, he turns into the same free loving, happy spirit that I used to secretly drool over when we were young.

So, the weather is back, it's warm and sunny and my spring crush has begun. I have my man and the outlook looks bright!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

With A Girl Like You

Today is April 1!!! It's a special, special day and not because it is the day of jokes and pranks. It is because April 1 kicks off the best month of the birthday month!! I love birthday month!! I don't even know when I decided to extend the merriment and celebrating to an entire month but I think it was back in high school. Maybe even younger. It's like I wake up on April 1 with a song in my heart and I think...What a GREAT month to be born!! A new arrival to greet the arrival of spring. All sunny and happy and giddy. That's what having an April birthday means to me!

In my ever changing moods, I should feel older. But in reality, I only feel better and stronger and happier and more powerful and less bogged down with the things that bog you down in your late 20s, 30s or even early 40s. This is just the beginning, is how I feel!! To me, it has been such a liberating feeling ever since I crossed my 40th birthday. This year will mark my 46th. I may just keep my actual age frozen in this year and just keep people guessing from here on out. Or, I could be like Coco Chanel and start telling people I am 100 and let them marvel at my upkeep. Either way, it's April, it's birthday month and I feel elated!!

I like to plan lunches and get togethers, all month. I like to make each day a tiny event. By the time my actual birthday rolls around, my family is ready to lock me out of the house after they toss my gifts out to me. I am sure that it can be a tad annoying to have someone humming and singing and dancing all month in the celebration of her life. Conceited? Not at all. Happy to be me? You bet!

So, to my fellow April birthday pals, let's ALL celebrate, together, each and every day. To all of my pals with birthdays in other months, what are you waiting for?? Start planning the month of celebrating!! Celebrate the wonder that is you!!

Today is perfect...warm, sunny, a light breeze and it's April 1. Birthday month kicks off to a great start and it just feels like everything is in line for an April Birthday Girl!!!