Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Yes, Spring Break is over. Sigh. We had a great time in Florida, relaxing on the beach every day, eating too much, exercising too little (okay, not at all unless you count slow strolls along the beach) and just generally being lazy. Isn’t that what vacations are all about?

And then, home. Yes, home to piles of laundry, an empty refrigerator and SNOW! Yes, snow. In March. Gotta love St. Louis! So today, I’m reliving my vacation with photos just. for. you! (Okay, really for me, but I’m using you, my faithful readers as my excuse!)


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A little kite flying…

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And a little sand castle building…

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The sand castle, or Mayan Village, actually even got much bigger than this, but eventually somebody felt compelled to run through it one night and destroy it. Too bad, it lasted almost 5 days! And yes, Dad helped (read: did most of the work)!!!

Okay, I’m feeling better about being home now (even though it snowed AGAIN last night). Thanks for letting me share my vacation photos with you today!


Monday, March 28, 2011

I Still Rate.

We were on Spring Break last week. I spent a lot of time with my children (thanks, Carla, for covering my classes!) and as well with some talented musicians from Fox High competing at Districts. I survived taking care of Karen's dog, Bismark. And no, I'm still not a fan of large dogs, although Biz was remarkably well behaved. I may even have felt a bit of concern for him when he didn't eat right away. Maybe. At least, I think that's what it might have been.

Last night, Z1 and I went on a date. I love getting one on one time with him. We started out at the new frozen yogurt place, The Orange Leaf. (If you haven't been there, it's WONDERFUL. The coolest decor and excellent frozen yogurt). We went into the shop, I helped him navigate all the selections, and told him to find a seat while I got my own treat. The only thing about The Orange Leaf that I'm not too crazy about is the lack of seating. But this was no problem for Z1. To my surprise, he walks up to the table with a mom and daughter (who was 1 year his junior) and nonchalantly introduces himself and asks if he can join them.

"My Goodness," I thought. "This is progress". He's a pretty shy kid, so it was completely unexpected that he would sit down and begin chatting with this girl and her mom. By the time I got over there, he had them in the palm of his little hand. Of course, the entire time I'm thinking,"Wow. When did he come out of his shell? This is awesome!"

We finished, said our goodbyes and began walking to the car. I looked at him,grinned, gave him a little nudge and said,"Hey! I thought you and I were on a date! We walk in and you ditch me for the first cute girl in the yogurt shop! What's up with that, bro?"

He stopped and looked at me... "Moooooom," he stated,"There is STILL no one else I like best than you."

I know, I thought. I just like to hear you say it. :)

Yours, wishing you a happy Monday,


Friday, March 18, 2011

Friday Funny- Who? Me? She'sCRAZY!

It's Friday! Do the Happy Dance! The kids are home on Spring Break. I'm taking off some work next week (I know- amazing, isn't it?) and Karen is vacationing in Florida.

Wanna hear the funny part?

She left ME as an EMERGENCY CONTACT for her DOG!


If you have even an inkling of who I am, you know that I do. not. like. large. dogs.


Which of course is why I have a puppy that will grow into a 90 pound adult large dog. But my puppy is a girl which makes her much safer. Right?

So this coming Friday, I have to go take care of Bismark.

You can begin the prayers and fasting now. I appreciate it! See you in a week when Spring Break is over!

Yours, wishing you the greenest grass of Spring,


Wednesday, March 16, 2011


How is it that my 96 pound dog can be such a big baby? He really can be a menacing, vicious dog at times. He growls, barks, and has even been known to be very unfriendly towards other dogs and some people. But bring on a thunderstorm or a few fireworks, and he turns into a sniffling, shaking weenie!

And the other night I found out, it could be much, much less than obvious, loud noises that freak him out. Let me tell you about it.

I was abruptly woken up at about 2 in the morning to my dogbiz in sunglasses climbing in bed with me. But when he gets in bed with me because he’s scared, he climbs on top of my head. Have you ever had 96 furry pounds on top of your head? Not great for breathing! After I finally get out from under him, and my hubby finally gets him out of bed, we realize that it’s not even storming outside, so we can’t figure out what the heck is wrong with him. But at 2 in the morning, who cares, right? By this time, I had gone to the bathroom, and of course he had followed me and hunkered down underneath the sink. Fine. Stay there, you big wuss!

Next thing I hear is a smoke detector chirping that the battery is low. Aha! So that’s what’s freaking him out. Our plan is to ignore it until morning. Yeah, right! Fine, we’ll change the battery. But in these newer houses, there’s a smoke detector in EVERY room, so we have to stand very still, waiting for the chirp, to try to figure out which one it is. We think it’s the hall detector, so we change it. CHIRP! Nope, let’s try the office. CHIRP! Crap, maybe it’s the sewing room. CHIRP! OMG, really? At this point, we’re both getting REALLY pissed! So imagine how stupid we felt when we realized that it wasn’t a smoke detector at all, it was the Carbon Monoxide detector in, of course, THE HALL!!!

I totally blame the dog for all of this. If it hadn’t been for him, I would have slept right through all of that chirping.

Damn weenie dog!


Monday, March 14, 2011

Before you leave you brush your teeth with a bottle of What?!

Good Morning Dear Readers!

I have this wonderful high school classmate recently reconnected through facebook friend who is an amazing blogger. I just HAD to share this recent post with you from her site: Fluid Pudding. If you have elementary age kids especially, you definitely need to read this. :-)

Before you leave you brush your teeth with a bottle of What?!

Yours, wishing you a Happy, Jack-free Monday,


Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Fun.... Postponed

Hello Dear Readers,

Today I had planned to tell you all about LOLA. But, hello! My business partner already did that for me. (That's just so wrong, don't you think? Even thought I DID miss my Monday blog, I think that's cruel and unusual punishment! DANG!)

It's still a good story, and I fully intend to tell it. However, watching the news this morning, I feel a little selfish posting something frivilous and funny after watching the massive devestation in Japan. It's just a reminder of how good my life is and how it can all be gone without warning. Can you imagine being suddenly homeless? With NOTHING? Maybe just the clothes on your back and possibly a cell phone if you happened to get it in time. I cannot even begin to wrap my mind around that.

And while I don't know anyone in Japan, have no ties there, I still can't help but think that these are people. With family members. Babies. Grandmas. Brothers. Best of friends. These are times when we will see the worst and the very best of humanity.

If you are even thinking about doing something, consider the following organizations:

Service International: (636) 532-9008 (right here in The Lou!)

These are two trusted and amazing organizations that will definitely bring relief to Japan. Just in case you are considering.

Today will be a day when many of us hug our kids extra tight.

Yours, breathing in deeply,


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Teaching Her a Lesson!

Melissa and I are friends, yes. But we are also business partners. And within a business relationship, there are agreements. When these agreements are broken, there must be consequences. Today, Melissa will see one of these consequences of her actions. Or should I say, a NON-action.

Our primary business, of course, is our books. But we also maintain this blog. Melissa’s job is to blog on Mondays and Fridays, and I blog on Wednesdays. But Melissa failed to blog this past Monday. Why, you may ask? After all, she’s on spring break right now from her teaching job. She should have all sorts of free time to blog.

Here’s why: SHE GOT A NEW PUPPY!!!

The consequence of not doing her job: I’m taking what should rightfully be her blog topic!

Just look at this picture:

Is she the MOST ADORABLE little thing you’ve ever seen? Her name is Lola and she is the fluffiest, cutest, snuggliest (yes, it’s a word) puppy EVER!!! I am completely in love with her, and she’s not even mine! (My dog’s nose was attached to me for about an hour after I got home!) I want to be at Melissa’s house ALL THE TIME, but only when nobody else is home so I don’t have to share Lola with anybody. Is that wrong?

Okay, I think I’ve taught Melissa a lesson here. And while she’s thinking of a topic for her Friday blog post, I’ll be playing with Lola in the basement!


Friday, March 4, 2011

Friday Fun!

It's Friday!!!! Everybody get up and shake your money maker 'cause my favorite day of the week it here! And it's not just ANY sort of Friday, mind you. This is the Friday where my two most FAVORITE words of March are uttered. My children will be celebrating it in a few weeks, and they will have a deliriously happy Friday, but this one is MINE. AAALLLLLLLLLL MINE. (Because when they celebrate theirs, I might be a little bit, uhm, edgy? We'll see...)

But today, dear readers, as I type this blog, I can only think of two words that would bring me such happiness.

Wanna know what they are?

Say it with me....


(Woooooooo Mu-FAHsa! Say it again!)

I may not get paid a whole lot as a professor of music, but one of the perks- every eight weeks I get a full week off. LOOOOOOOVVVE!

Oh- you don't get one? I'm really sorry. (Sincerely!) Maybe it should be a new law? Maybe we should storm Congress? I mean.... if they can demand more taxes, do we not have the right to band together and demand Spring Break for ALL?

Hmmmmm.... I may be on to something here.

Yours, considering a trip to the capital- AFTER Spring Break ;) ,


Wednesday, March 2, 2011


When writing our second book, The Caregiver Organizer for MYhands Aging Parent, we did a lot of research into caregiving for older adults. (By the way, click HERE to purchase. Yes, shameless plug!) And even now, as a way to inform and enlighten people who “like” our Facebook page, I post articles about caregiving. (So click HERE to get to our FB page. You know, just in case you’d like to see what’s going on there and want to “like” us! Haha, another shameless plug? Yep!) Throughout this research for the book and for articles, I have come across SO MANY stories about elder abuse and caregivers who take advantage of their caregivees and patients.

So today I wanted to tell you about something I witnessed yesterday in a doctor’s building that warmed my heart.

An elderly woman with a walker was getting in the elevator with her obviously hired caregiver. (How do I know she was hired? It was just obvious. Uniform, different skin color, taking her to a doctor’s appointment. You know…) The caregiver was speaking very softly to her, then out of the blue, she gently swept the woman’s bangs to the side. Not that they were in her eyes, but more of a, “let’s make them pretty for the doctor” adjustment. As the elevator door opened, I heard the caregiver tell the woman that when they sit down, she has a story to tell her. She was so patient as she waited for the woman to turn to the left towards the doctor’s office. She didn’t try to hurry her. I wanted to keep those elevator doors open longer, but I almost felt like I was intruding. That simple gesture with the bangs and the way she spoke to her actually gave me a lump in my throat, and believe me, it takes a lot to choke me up. (Ask Melissa, I’m just not an emotional person!)

caregiverThat is how a caregiver should be. That elderly woman, and her family, is so lucky to have found her. I haven’t stopped thinking of them since I saw them yesterday morning. I wish I had said something to her, the caregiver. I was in awe of how well she was taking care of her patient, whom I’m sure she didn’t view as a patient at all.

So to all the caregivers out there who do their jobs well, I take my hat off to you. And to the woman I saw yesterday. Bravo! Anyone who can get me choked up deserves a standing ovation!