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May 10th, 2011 | Author:

All of the chaos and whirlwind activity of the past couple of months have all been leading up to the reward: 4 glorious, kid-free days in Charleston, South Carolina. Just DaHubby and I.

I can’t tell you how needed this was.

We drove down, as leisurely as DaHubby is capable of, and checked into our hotel, Aloft Charleston. Aloft is like …. hotel by IKEA. Which is kind of interesting, but not a lifestyle, I’m thinking. It also, apparently, attracts some oddly different types of people – at least according to DaHubby, who braved the bar one evening for a beer. Overall, it wasn’t a bad place to stay.

The first night, we realized we had no plans at all for the next few days, and in typical pammie fashion, I suggested we go eat and figure out a course of action. A Yelp! search later and we ended up at a local Cajun restaurant that … was awesome. Surprisingly so.

The next morning we took a ferry to Fort Sumter, the site of the first shots fired in the civil war. Turns out that the site was eventually surrendered by the Union army, and the Confederate army allowed them the time to clear out, and take their flag and get safely away before taking possession of the fort. I was impressed by that story, I don’t know why.

Oh. DaHubby ran into someone he worked with in Maine as we were getting off of the return ferry. What are the odds of that?!?

We spent the afternoon browsing the Charleston town market, which was pretty amazing, then hit a local BBQ joint for dinner before falling out.

The next day we spent finding, and browsing the Charleston Navy Exchange. Funny the things we miss about being a part of the military life. Tax-free shopping!!! After that, we went on a tour of the USS Yorktown and the submarine that is onsite at Patriots Point. More on that later.

Dinner. Oh, my. The dinner. We went to a place not far from our 2nd hotel, the Embassy Suites Downtown, called Magnolia’s. Anytime you’re in Charleston, you should check this place out. It was so worth it. And I apparently can’t insert pictures from the iPad app, or I would show a picture of the shoes that I wore to dinner and subsequently walked a mile back to the hotel in. The ones with 3″ heels. Really?!? Yes, I am that dumb.

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March 21st, 2011 | Author:
Not My Dad's Horse

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Who has it?  These past couple of months, not I.

2011 started off with a whirlwind and it hasn’t stopped since.  I went to Scottsdale and came home.  February was pretty uneventful other than DaHubby was gone for the whole month.  March, he came home, and we relaxed – for a minute.

Then, I got the call.  My paternal grandmother was ill and not expected to make it.  Within 48 hours, she was gone, and we were on our way to FL.

Driving on Thursday, funeral on Friday, a 2 hour horseback ride on Saturday followed by Saturday night dinner with the maternal family, and back on the road on Sunday.  Thursday and Sunday – 8 hours driving time each day.  It’s a rough trip to do in four days but of course we had to go.

The service was upbeat, per my grandmother’s request, lots of singing and happy stories.  No preaching about fire and brimstone.  And afterwards – the food.  Good, southern cooking.  Blew my points to hell, but so worth it.

Saturday morning (early, not my preference, but I think my dad really needed it), my dad and I, just the two of us, took the horses out for a ride on the local water management property.   I hadn’t been on a horse in a really long time, so I got the placid, “I fall asleep even when I’m walking”, horse.  My dad took his palomino.  Next time, I am totally taking the palomino.  LOL.  Anyway, we stayed out for a couple of hours, just talking and riding.  Best quote from the day:  “You know, that might have been a bear.  Do you want to go back and look?”  No, thanks, Dad – I’ll pass, but thanks for asking.  It took me a few minutes, but I did giggle.

After that, we packed up and headed to my mom’s house.  We got there and half an hour later, DaHubby was like “come on, let’s go to town to the gun store.”  I knew this day was coming but I was hoping that it wouldn’t happen so soon.  Two hours later…. we are standing in Daddy’s Gun Shop (yes, that’s really the name) and I am signing the sales slip to buy him some new rifle.

Yes, I bought him a rifle.  I didn’t even make him promise I could buy a new purse.  Really, I’d have bought him an AK-47 and 200 rounds of ammo if it meant I’d be able to get out of there.  Seriously?  I am bringing that up next time we are shoe shopping and he is like “Just pick a pair, already!”

But we finally got out of there and went to a great seafood place for dinner.  Early Sunday we were on our way home.

Until we found the Le Creuset factory store.  An outlet store filled with this wonderful cookware!  And a 50% room!  Whee!

A dutch oven and 11″ skillet later, we were on our way to Columbia and the PX at Fort Jackson.  Nothing exciting there, I don’t even know why I mentioned it.  But I did, and it sat on the screen while I retrieved my pizza from the delivery man, ate the pizza, and ate the cheesecake, too.  Uh, yeah.   Points-busters. I’ve been full of them today.  Not sure why, but tomorrow is a whole new day, right?  Probably because I cooked 2 healthy, low-fat meals for CK today and had no energy left to cook for us.  (She had back surgery a couple of weeks ago and is still not up to standing for long periods of time, and her husband can’t cook.  Bad combination.)  Oh, anyway, so the mention of Fort Jackson?  I figure it’s earned its keep.

I was home for a week and then had to go to Charleston, WV for work.  Since I don’t blog about work, I’ll just say it was a trip, and now I’m home.  Expect more of those sentences in the near future ….. unless I hit a really good restaurant when I’m out of town for work, and then I will totally talk about that.

So as an aside, I just totally changed the title of this blog post.  Why?  Because I asked TheKidlet to make me a glass of the Diet Pepsi that came with the pizza.  She said, “Why do you always get a Pepsi… Diet Pepsi…. when we get pizza?”  Really?  Kid, I’ve gotten soda with my pizza a whopping total of two times since we’ve lived in this house.  Two.  I gave her this information and said, “Sometimes, I just want a soda.”‘

This totally turned into a random post full of …. nothing in particular.  And I’m not even halfway through March!

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January 27th, 2011 | Author:
chemical structure of bismuth subsalicylate
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But you know, it wasn’t a heat at all.  Yeah, so it’s JANUARY.  I expect the dry heat in ARIZONA to be … well, hot.  Or at least warm.

Instead, it was pretty much cold.  Not that I packed for that.

So… this is what went down.

I was scheduled to fly out on Wednesday morning.  Sunday, my mom came up to help with TheKidlet.   Monday, we shopped.  Or my, did we shop.  I love when my mom comes up, I get to shop with impunity.  Anyway, Tuesday morning at about 0500, TheKidlet came into my room and said the four worst words ever:

Mommy, I threw up.

She ended up in the bed with me, garbage can at her side.  For the next twelve hours, I held her hand and her hair while she threw up, repeatedly.   Bless my mom, she cleaned up when it was necessary.  I’m totally not good with puke.  At one point, though, I totally had to laugh, as my 9 year old was sitting in the bathroom with her back against the wall, legs splayed in front of her – looking exactly like she’d had a very rough night, indeed.

Wednesday morning, I fly out to Phoenix, catch a ride to Scottsdale, and then catch another ride  to the Fort McDowell Resort and Casino.  All is well.  I meet, I greet, I eat, and I head up to my room to …. well.  Turns out, sleep is not on the agenda.  Turns out, what TheKidlet had was CONTAGIOUS.   I spend the next 9 hours curled up on the bathroom floor, wondering what the fuck just happened.

Thursday, I am in gift shop, first thing – I needed the pink stuff.  Thankfully, they do have some, and I stock up.  I eat it like candy – which is my only sustenance for the whole day.  Thinking about food makes me want to die.  Actually eating it might have done me in.  There is a group off-site dinner, something about eating under the stars.  I decline as I now have a fever.  I  head back to my room at 5:30 and take a Xanax.

No, it didn’t help with the fever.  But it did help knock me out completely so that I didn’t have that hazy-hotel-sleep that is never very satisfying.

Friday, it’s much better.  The fever is gone.  I mean, I’m still eating Pepto-Bismol, but I am also managing small amounts of real food without dying.  And then…

Really?  Add insult to injury and all that stuff. Hives.  Are you kidding me?

So now I’m eating Pepto like candy but I’ve added the side dish of Benadryl to it.  I make it through the day, and head to dinner at a Hawaiian fusion place called Roy’s.   I highly recommend it if you’re in the Scottsdale area.    About the time my eighth Benadryl kicked in, I was done.

Saturday… fly home.  Keep up with the Pepto and the Benadryl.  Make it home, and honestly, fall out.   Oh, the end product of this lovely little virus is a slight cold that feels more like mono – there’s a major energy drain going on.

Sunday, earlier than is generally humanly possible – mom leaves half her tires on my driveway, in her haste to leave.  I asked her today if she wanted to come back.  I think she’s still laughing.

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January 10th, 2011 | Author:

And then.   I encountered heaven.  Let me tell you about it.

We went for sushi at a local restaurant.  And they had this concoction on the menu called the Flaming Lobster Roll.  And it was NINETEEN DOLLARS.  For 10 pieces of sushi.  Yeah, it’s lobster.  1/2 pound of it.  But still – $19?!?.  I was totally intrigued.  And totally hungry.  So I ordered it for DaHubby and I to share.

Flaming Lobster RollHere is the description from the menu:

10 jumbo pcs, lightly tempura battered 1/2 lb lobster tail, avocado, asparagus, served with sweet & spicy sauce

The “Flaming” part likely comes from the fact that the aluminum foil cone they have sitting in carrots in the middle of the empty lobster tail was on fire when they delivered it to the table.  TheKidlet just didn’t like that one bit and in short order had blown that right out.  She couldn’t fathom why they would put fire on our plate for no reason.  And I couldn’t explain it to her.  Nor could I convince her that a “sweet & spicy” sauce wouldn’t be up her alley if some were to happen to be on the piece of cucumber she snared from the plate.  Only tasting it would do that.

So.  Yes.  This was hella good.  And that is hella bad.  Because did I mention it’s $19?  And it’s totally not something I would get for my main meal, as it was I only had a couple of pieces of it because as the menu description clearly states, it’s DEEP FRIED SUSHI.  Sure, it’s lightly battered but it’s still FRIED.  Plus the sauce.  So add the cost to the cost to my ass and that = BAD.

And you know I’m gonna want it again.  Good thing we had leftovers, huh?

So, getting back to the deep fried part … this is bad for my ass, but my tastebuds are all over that shit.  It makes the lobster warm and everything soft and warm and mushy but you still have the crunch of the asparagus, and then the sweet and spicy sauce.  Oh, it’s totally an experience that indulges all of your taste buds.  Even DaHubby, who says “eh.  It was okay” about things that have me in foodie-orgasmic status…. said “uh.  Yeah.  THAT is good.”

The last thing he said that about was fried macaroni when he had it for the first time.  Now that I think about it, he was eating deep fried ribs at the same time, so …. hmm.  I am no longer thinking about buying him a deep fryer.  He’ll deep fry our shoes, I’m thinking.

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January 09th, 2011 | Author:
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

Image by elycefeliz via Flickr

Credit to Schmode over at Random Musings of a Frogged Mind for the most appropriate label for what this post surely contains.

It’s 1:37 AM.  TheKidlet has been in bed for …. 20 minutes, max.  She stayed up late, to watch the ending of Willy Wonka.

I interrupted her viewing of Willy Wonka (the original version, of course), when I dragged her and DaHubby out on a quest for a new office chair.  I have been using DaHubby’s and he’s been using my old, decrepit one … and I think he’s kind of tired of it.  I don’t blame him.  We didn’t find one that I   liked, mainly because all we found were leather or pleather… and well.  I have a Smidgen.  Smidgen who likes to climb up and sleep behind my head on the top of her chair.   She climbs using her claws.  Cause that’s what cats do.  And leather chairs just wouldn’t last very long under those circumstances.

We popped over to PetSmart and picked up some chew toys for the dogs …. because Henry is a beagle, and beagles chew.  And if Henry doesn’t have appropriate things to chew on, he chews on shoes.  Remotes.  Toys.  Drainage pipes that he has dug up from under the yard.  Whatever he can get his teeth on.  And in the interest of keeping him alive, every few months, I drop whatever it takes to replace whatever he’s demolished.  I mean, he snuggles with me at night.

So we went to dinner.  More on that tomorrow.

And we got home in time to see the Jets game.  And THEN she decided she could finish watching Willy Wonka.   I bet she sleeps in tomorrow.

Is anyone still here? Cause that was like…. the most inane post ever.   So here’s more.

In mid-2009, I came down with a case of mysterious hives.  Mysterious because we never did pinpoint the reason for them.  Every few months I would attempt to go off of my allergy meds to see if the hives returned, and they always did.  Until about May 2010.  So for almost a year, I had idiopathic hives.  Hives suck.  I mean, if you’ve never had them, count yourself lucky.  If you’ve never had hives that they couldn’t explain the reason for, drop to your knees in gratitude now.

Fast forward to about 2 weeks ago.  Just when I started missing my allergist, cause really she was downright cool, guess what shows?  I took a Benadryl and chalked it up to the new conditioner that I had tried.

And as I typed that….. I literally had a lightbulb moment.

Damnit.  It’s the conditioner.  The new ALL NATURAL ORGANIC conditioner.

I know this because I used it this morning.  And today, I have hives.

I hate that.  It seemed like a good conditioner, too, which is rare in the world of no-SLA-no-paraben-no-bad-stuff conditioners.  Usually, they’re just kind of …. crappy.

This is why I shouldn’t write blog posts at 1:37 AM.

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