Saturday, August 30, 2008

Can't wait

I've been anticipating this morning all week. My Boo and I got to sleep in, in fact, he's still asleep. We are going to pack up, load the car, throw the dogs in and head out to the sticks for a nice relaxing weekend. We're going to the lake to hang around and be lazy. Today is also my mom's 50th birthday and Monday is Boo's birthday. I plan to sit on the screened porch at the cabin overlooking the lake and read, nap, chatter and go for walks with my camera. Boo plans to sit on the screened porch, drink some beer, play cards and eat. All in all, it will be a well deserved break from the grind. Oh, the dogs plan to swim in the lake, go for walks with me and my camera and sleep on the screened porch.
Hope your Labor Day holiday is everything you're hoping for, talk to you when I return.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Indiana State Fair

The entrance to the Indiana State Fair, home
of fried Twinkies, Snickers and new this year, Fried Pepsi. Don't even ask, I didn't try it and I didn't see any of it either, so I can't begin to describe what this concoction might be.

This little boy looks like he's never seen a cow before. Yes, even here among the corn fields and soybeans there are real people who've never experienced livestock. Which I find incredibly hard to believe.

This little girl, wearing her Indianapolis Colts Cheerleader outfit, upstaged the clown band and danced like nobody was watching.
But everybody was. The band had to start interacting with her to regain some of the spotlight.

Then there was this in the midway.....

Isn't that freakin' hilarious?! Nuns on the midway! Trying their hands at some games of chance to win giant bears and goldfish. I hope that Carnie treated them right, Lord help him if he didn't.
I tried to be discreet with my camera, but they must have known how out of place they looked.
I suppose the midway would probably be a good spot for some good olde fashioned ministry. Lot's of seedy business going on there. Maybe they were there to pray with people before they got on one of those death traps, uh, er, I mean carnival rides. Tilt-a-whirl anyone?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

It's all relative..or perspective

Settle in, this is a sordid tale from last night. Picture a quaint, inviting conference room at a bed and breakfasty type place. That is where I was all day yesterday for work. It was an all day meeting followed by a well deserved nice dinner at a a little spot called Noah Grants. While I was eating with my co-workers/partners/team, my husband was on the golf course an hour from home. He went there straight from work. This will be important in a sec. We were out and about being young professionals, right? As dinner comes to an end I ordered dessert for me and one for my huz, to go, because I'm a sweet considerate wife. After all the goodbyes I was juggling my to-go boxes down the sidewalk. In a split second I twisted my ankle and fell to the ground, breaking my fall with my left knee. My left knee has taken some abuse this year, so has my pride. While I was sitting there on the sidewalk assessing my to-go box situation a kindly older man appeared in an instant to check and see if I was okay.

Him: Ma'am? Are you okay? I was sitting in my car...

Me: Hiding my face, trying not to cry, pretending to fiddle with the boxes

Him: I saw your ankle and then down you went! Are you alright?

Me: in a meek tiny voice, Yes I'm fine, I was just trying to save the steak and brownies.

Him: Well you did! glancing at the blood dripping out of the new hole torn in my nice new Gap jeans.

Me: I'll be fine, thanks so much! feigning chipperness.

No no, the story doesn't stop there! I limped the next couple of blocks to my car, rolled my pant leg up over my skinned knee and cleaned my wound with the little first aid kit I had in my car.

When I got home I just wanted to get inside and wash the would and put some antibacterial stuff on it. Instead, I fumbled through the garage door into the kitchen with my boxes and just about fell on the floor with laughter when I saw this...

My husband and I had been gone all day, Farley was confined to the kitchen, who knows how long the floor grate/register vent cover had been dangling around his neck. But he was cool. Just sitting there watching me stumble in the door, blood dripping down my leg, laughing at his predicament. I'm sure in his own doggy way, he was laughing at mine. However, because I have opposable thumbs, I had to take pictures of his situation before I even went to resolve my own. Now don't get all Peta on me, the floor grate is extremely light weight and he weighs 115lbs. So, he was fine, it was funny. What made it even funnier is how lackadaisical he was about it. He's all, you know, I wear these things all the time. The ladies call me Flavor Farley.

He's a dood boooyeeee! Dood doge! Needless to say, I removed the offending vent cover. I eventually mopped up the carnage on my leg and I showed these pics to my huz when he got home. We called him Flavor Farley all night. Peace Out.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Random Thoughts

Wow. I just want to tell you a few unrelated things.
I was supposed to get a needle stuck in my neck this week to biopsy a couple of suspicious thyroid nodules. Just got a call from the doc saying they were nixing the biopsy because the radiologist who looked at my ultrasound photos thinks we should just re-ultrasound in 6 months to see if the nodules change size. There were no calcification's on the nodules, which means my nodules are leaning to the benign category. Hooray! I was not looking forward to being stabbed in the neck! Maybe some of you have had a thyroid issue? Any tips?

Also, I am so excited! I just signed up for a "Photoshop Basics" class! It's an eight week class for, get this, $139! 6:30-9pm every Tuesday. I went to Half-Price Books and bought all the Photoshop books/bibles I could get my hands on. It's going to be awesome!

My mare is having her final cisplatin injection this week and she gets to come home! Yay! My farrier graciously offered to haul her home on his way to a cutting show. It's really a big pain in the rear that we don't own a pick-up or horse trailer. It seems like she goes to Purdue for treatment once a year, at least. I hate wrangling rides and inconveniencing other people.

That's about it for today. Prepare yourselves for State Fair time.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I'm not even a football fan.

Gotta give a shout out to one of my favorite movies. "Remember the Titans" It's showing all this week on the Encore channel. I'm watching it right now. What!? You've never seen it!
You have no idea what you're missing. Here's the link to a, go to Encore and find the next showing. You don't have cable? Fine then. Go rent it. It's sooo worth it.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Nothin' says Summer...

Like a game of "Cornhole" and a cold beer at the lake. Here are my fellas down at the lake a few weeks ago. In case you're not familiar with the game, it's pretty much like throwing bean bags at a hole. Except the bags are filled with field corn. My huz made the game boards himself and even got fancy and made a "travel set" that folds up. So, enjoy my cornhole photo essay!This is my huz. He's pretty proud of his "throwing form".
The next cowboy is my little brother. He's a cutie patootie. He hates to play games of any kind.This guy is my step dad, Big D. Any occasion for a beer is okay with him.
That's my sister-in-law next to him.

Remember the beer I mentioned? My little bro doesn't usually drink much but he has to get thru cornhole somehow.

My huz pondering a loss. It's serious competition.

Whew! The agony of defeat.

My brother does not care in the least.

We're getting together next weekend at the lake. The boys are tearing out the old dock. I'll be sure to capture the whole crazy fiasco, uh, er, I mean the whole manly display of ingenuity. Right. Stay tuned.

P.S. Mare Update: She's still at Purdue University. The results came back from histopathology, it was squamous cell again (I'm not surprised at all). They have administered one Cisplatin treatment, are also treating topically with Efudex. Another Cisplatin injection will happen next week. She's is healing up fine from the surgery. A little bit of banamine from time to time to keep her comfortable, think, horsey Vicodin. I'll keep you posted. Sounds like she'll be home in a week or so.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Main Street USA

Today my schedule had me making sales calls in my hometown, which was sort of nice. I knew where all of the doctors' offices were located although it's not hard to figure out, just go out by the hospital. Anything that falls in the "medical" category is out by the hospital. The other end of town has the schools and car wash. Now, the "church" category is off the charts. They have those on every street practically. The big "Danville Christian" is on Main Street in the middle of town, they want to be sure people see 'em comin' and goin' on Sunday morning. The Catholics meet up a few times a week at Saint Mary's on the hill near the old IGA grocery (which went out of business and is now a lawn mower repair store). The Methodists get together on Mill Street. They sort of cater to kids and young families. Snoopy School (preschool) is there along with the best ever Live "drive-thru" Nativity, at Christmastime, naturally. Now, the Apostolic church is down on Lincoln Street. They have a whole compound or something with a lake and horses and a little gift shop that they run. In school we used to call them the "bunhead religion," because, well, because we were ignorant kids, that's why. So, throw in a couple more denominations and you have a whole town with more than their fair share of the Lord.

I digress.

I want to pay a tribute to the Danville Dairy Queen. No other DQ compares. Ours is one of the originals. Forget the "Brazier" crap with grills and fryers. There is nothing better than a rotisserie hot dog in a steamed bun with cheese and chili. Add in a vanilla milkshake and it's just bliss. Today I stopped there for lunch and had the afore mentioned chili cheese dog along with a Peanut Buster Parfait (because they were on sale!). I asked the girl working why it was so much better there and she replied with, "We clean the ice cream machine three times a day.) And there you have it. I was hoping for something a little more intriguing I guess.

While I was having lunch, sitting in my car, I notice an old friend at the DQ window ordering his lunch. I hopped right out of my car and went to say hello. My friend Andy, who always called me "squirrel" when we were in high school. We sat and chatted away for about 20 minutes I suppose. He waved at about 20 cars that drove by. I didn't wave at any. He caught me up on who was still around town and what they were up to. Mostly folks are raising families or raising hell. He's married, but no kids...although he has a new Harley, so I'm not sure what he's raising.

Anyway, he told me a few stories about people we know, that I haven't seen in forever. Some things never change. But I tell ya, it was nice sitting there with Andy in my little hometown, eating DQ ice cream and reminiscing.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Solution to Writer's Block

I don't feel much like writing, so I thought I'd share some photos that have been hiding in my hard drive. Enjoy!

This near the Superstition Mountains in Arizona.

This is sunrise in the Mayan Riviera (near Playa del Carmen)

Mya having a dreaded bath. She hates it.

Riding Dixie last fall. I love this photo.

And this one....

Since my mare is sequestered to the far reaches of Lafayette, Indiana, I miss her.

They called to tell me how much her hospital bill is so far...don't ask. She's worth it.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Things I do for Critters

I love my critters. I do. My beautiful, smart and gentle mare has been battling squamous cell carcinoma for the past three years. The first tumor appeared on her vulva..literally where the sun don't shine. It grew and grew and was nasty and gross. My vet biopsied it and told me it was cancer. I bawled. I am a lucky duck though because Purdue University Large Animal Hospital is an hour and a half away from me. So, I had a friend haul Dixie (my mare) to some of the thought leaders of equine medicine to see what they had to say about it. Dr. Hawkins is the local CO2 lasering expert...see, I'm a lucky duck. He took one look at her tumor and said "Holy Sh*t!" Just kidding. He actually said we'd (meaning he'd) have to do surgery. Anyway, we (he) did surgery. Here's how they do it...the vet students put my mare in the stocks, give her a little local anesthesia, wait for her to get numb then they give her an epidural. Dixie stands there like such a sweet sleepy dopehead while they bandage her tail and tie it up out of the way. Then they make me leave the operating room because they are using a laser and they don't want to accidentally put my eye out. From here I can only speculate..I suppose they get the laser fired up and start cutting out the tumor while a student dabs the trickling blood with a cloth. Then they stitch her up. It doesn't take long after surgery for her to wake up a little and the epidural wears off. She's so dang good and well behaved. She healed up and you couldn't even tell she'd ever had an issue back there. Until the tumor showed up again...two more times. So we did surgery two more times. Dr. Hawkins was frustrated, Dixie was frustrated and I was frustrated. Why won't this cancer take a hint and get lost? Make like a tree and leave....make like a fetus and head out.....scram..beat get the idea. It kept coming back and invading her girl parts. Last August was the latest surgery and I thought we'd beat it with surgery and cisplatin injections.

Until last month. The cancer was back with a brand new tumor and was growing faster than ever. By the time I got her back to Purdue it was the size of a baseball. Her surgery was last Thursday and Dr. Hawkins is optimistic that maybe this time it's just an abscess which is much less worrisome and also benign. I am guarded but slightly hopeful. I'm a bottom line kind of girl, so I'll wait for the official histopathology results. I thought I'd share some photos from my visiting my mare in the hospital today. Don't worry, you won't be able to see the swollen surgical site (it's under her tail, sillies!).

Mmmmm..mama brought peppermints!
Beats hospital food!

She's gittin' my itchy spot! Oh yeah!

Checkin' out the scene of the crime.

Okay, seriously mom, enough with the camera.

Oh yeah, did you see the sexy, gigantic jumpsuit I had to wear into her stall? Mmmhhhhmm you know it. Right after I left her stall they handed me a helmet and I boarded Apollo 13.

Cross your fingers for us! And send money!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

What!? She's posting again?

Look at me, three days in a row posting! I had a couple of things to warned, the first thing I'm going to share is pretty if you have a weak stomach you might want to scroll past the first few paragraphs.

So, I'm sitting on my couch. Right now. And this just happened about 15 minutes ago. My husbands 115 lb. yellow lab just horked his morning breakfast up all over my new wool rug. Yep.

Some questions immediately came to mind; Am I going to have to clean up this flood of digested dog food because my husband isn't home from work yet? Could I possibly leave it there until he gets home? was just a thought, okay? I didn't really leave it there. So in the most exciting voice I could muster I urged him outside so he would think it was the best idea ever instead of hanging around and puking some more. Then I had to use my noodle and figure out the best way of extracting said dog vomit without mashing it down into the rug...hhmmmm. Why, I'll use a spatula, of course! Who wouldn't use a spatula? Geez Louise I am full of ingenuity!

Let me tell you, it worked like a charm. I picked the oldest, least often used spatula in my kitchen. And when I was done I put it in the dishwasher. What!? Why waste a perfectly good spatula?

Dog Hork Clean Up 101: Spatulate (see, ingenuity!) dog vomit, spray area with deodorizer and stain remover, blot dry. Voila!

Other Spatuletic activity: see photo

Remember back when I was campaigning to say the "F" word more frequently because I should unabashedly say whatever I wanted? Well, I think I'm over that. I kind of think I'd rather save it for special occasions or get rid of it altogether...well, maybe not altogether. Just much less usage. My previous work environment fostered such language, nurtured it even. Now that I'm away from that train wreck it seems a little inappropriate that's all.

My clock is ticking. You know, the biological one? Yeah, I've got all kinds of baby mama lust. Everywhere I look there are babies or pregnant bellies. There was a time when I wondered if I was the marriage/family type. Since I'm on my second marriage, I guess I like getting married. You know Boo and I are going to start "trying" this month. I hate to say we're "trying." It's more like "unbridled recklessness the likes of which we've never experienced." So, we'll see what happens. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

There she goes....

I've been listening to country music lately. I haven't listened in a few years. Maybe that's why sometimes I don't really know the current, most prominent version of myself. I have found that there a couple different versions of me. Not like scary Sybil, it just seems that I am a walking contradiction sometimes.
Maybe I 'd better clarify. Listening to this music takes me back to the root of who I am, how I was raised and where I come from. For the past few years I have become a slick, polished, smartypants career gal who buys too many clothes and shoes. Just the other day I was considering purchasing a pair of $200 jeans. I promise they didn't have platinum stitching or gold coins in the pockets. In fact, they looked pretty much like my GAP jeans...with a different tag sewn to the rear. But my rationale was, I deserve these jeans I've earned a treat, they'll look even better on my ass than Levi's. That's when (thank heavens) my alter ego showed up and smacked me upside the head. She told my slick self imagine what you could spend $200 on. It doesn't make any kind of good sense to blow it on a single pair of jeans, you tard. And amazingly my smartypants self listened to her. Walked out of the store.
Living in the city is sort of like constant peer pressure. Boo and I live on the northside of our major city. It's the more affluent side of town I guess. It wasn't my choice mind you..Boo already owned this house when we got hitched. And we aren't right in the thick of the yuppies, thank the angels. To illustrate my point; my sales territory is on the westside. All the little rural towns are over there. As I drove around today I noticed lots of pick-up trucks and hard working sweaty men. I like pickups and sweaty men. Then I started driving home and the closer I got to the northside, the pickups turned into SUV's (the fancy kinds) Mercedes, Lexus and Beemers mostly carrying men in white collared shirts with ties. There was more pavement, upscale shopping areas, and not so many trees. Now, I want to own up to the fact that my husband drives a Lexus, but he bought it pre-owned and plans to drive it into eternity. And we're going to pay it off this year.
But still. It's like a fancy car is a prerequisite to live on the northside. And fancy jeans, and shoes and Pottery Barn and Barnes and Noble...and I get sucked in because I forget that the real world lies beyond the city limits, down a winding road, over the hill and around the bend as you head into the trees. That's where I come from. That's where I am me. I catch glimpses of me sometimes and I want to grab that girls arm and say hey, take me with you.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Good morning.

It's 6:45am this stormy tuesday morning. My alarm went off at 6am and I laid in bed listening to the thunder. I could hear the rain pelting the shingles and occasional lightening flashed through the curtains. Just a summer storm passing thru, no need to take cover. I do love a nice summer storm. When I was a kid living out in the sticks I'd sit out in the yard and watch the storms roll in until my mom yelled for me to come in so I wouldn't get my foolishness struck by lightening. My dad got struck once. That's another story though.
Anyway, we had a screened in patio that I practically lived in while I was growing up. One side faced east and I could see cars coming down the road (which was kind of an event because I lived on a slow county road) and the other side faced the woods, where all the magic lived. I could sit there all day listening to the sounds of the woods. Birds singing, squirrels chattering, an occasional mysterious crashing through brush (maybe a deer passing thru? or raccoons? squirrels miscalculating a jump?). Nighttime was the best, after the heat of the day faded into comfortable night air, cool, but warm..does that make sense? The kind of summer night air that caresses your skin and makes you close your eyes and breathe it all in. I'd just sit out there on the sofa, in the dark, by myself and listen to the woods. Locust (cicadas?) were typically the first
to begin their chik chik buzzzz see-saw rhythm. Mom called them "back-to-school locust." After the sun dropped below the horizon the crickets would commence the chirping and the nightbirds would warble...and there are also some crazy little tree frogs that could screech like something you've never heard before. Teen weeny things, big noise. I loved sitting out there. It was my solace and retreat. As a teen I'd sleep out there on the sofa every chance I got. The nights it rained were heaven, ahhh. I loved that patio. I loved that woods. Kinda bittersweet thinking about it now. The house was sold when my parents divorced. I was 24 when that happened. They sold the house and had a big auction. While strangers were perusing our things, our memories in the yard, I snuck off into the woods. I walked down the trail to the ash tree by the creek where all of my childhood pets are buried and cried. Cried for my pets, cried for losing my childhood home, cried for the break-up of my dysfunctional family, cried for the unfairness of it all. Cried because the auctioneer just sold my big old dollhouse for five dollars by mistake. And I mostly blame my dad for all of it.
I drive past the old place every now and then, when I'm out that way, it looks different...sort of overgrown. All the trees we planted are full grown now, the woods looks unattended to. My dad always kept the trails mowed. One of these days I'll pull off to the side of the road and wander into the woods just to see if any magic still lives there.