Sunday, January 29, 2012

Remembering Dad...Year III

Today would have been my Dad’s 77th birthday. Dad liked nothing better than having a steak for his birthday. Mom likes a Ribeye, but not Dad, he liked a T-Bone, the bigger the better. In recent years, the local steakhouse closed down, reopened, closed again, reopened as a church, closed again and has now reopened as a Mexican restaurant.

Confused? Me too!

So, in keeping with the family tradition, we’re going out for T-bones at the new Longhorn that has opened near where the old steakhouse once stood.

I’m sad you can’t be with us but we know you’ll be watching. I don’t know if you ever got to eat at Longhorn or not but I hear they cook a really mean steak.

We miss you.
Gopher

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Wally

Meet Wally, the newest cat!




Resting after a long day of reading my book



Somebody ate all of the cake



I love this basket!



Yeah, I'm looking out the window, so what?



Got treats?



Here's Ralphie...



Did you notice my spot?



It's you again, and you keep pointing that thing at me.



Hey!



I really love this basket!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

More Matters Of Timing...Part II

"Well, there's no water," I yelled back.

And there I stood.

Lathered.

Soaped up.

And no water. Oh, rats! Talk about having perfect timing...well, maybe imperfect, anyway.

What happened next was a scene straight out of The Bing Bang Theory where Howard and his mother are trying to engage in conversation.

"What'd ya say?"

"There's no water. I got soap everywhere."

"What happened to the water? You ain't still got soap in your hair, do ya?"

"I don't know what happened, you better check the water heater. And yes, I've got soap in every orifice and a head full of shampoo. The water heater is in the basement and try not to throw up down there." I yelled back as I started to shiver underneath my layer of soap. (The basement is very musty and damp and Friend throws up every time she goes in there.)

"Oh, crap! Isn't the hot water heater in the basement. I hope it don't make me throw up. I'll check the water meter too while I'm outside."

"You better check the meter while you're outside, too," I yelled back. Meanwhile, the water seemed to be making a comeback, albeit a very sparse trickle. My main priority was to get the soap out of the nether region because I was beginning to feel a slight burning sensation. I don't know how much time elapsed but in between drops of water I thought I heard Friend retching in the basement. "Find anything?" I asked. "Are you okay?"

"There's nothing down here. I just puked everywhere...*#^king basement. I'm okay, though."

Time continued to pass and I was performing contortions trying to get the slow-moving stream where it needed to be. Imagine trying to rinse off a layer of soap a straw full at a time. Not the most productive way, to say the least. I yelled for Friend a few times but there was no answer until I heard a comment from the kitchen. "I got your mail when I was checking the water meter and you're not gonna believe this? I told you that you should get your mail more than once a week."

"Who cares about the mail? What about the water?" I couldn't figure out why she was talking about the mail. At that moment the water came back on full force. "Never mind, the water is back on." I finished my shower, got dressed and walked into the living room where Friend was chuckling to herself. "What's up with you? And why were you talking about the mail, earlier?"

Friend pointed to the table where I noticed a postcard from the local water department dated from earlier in the week. Basically, it read that they would be performing maintenance on the water lines and to expect some disruption of the water flow.

What wasn't really surprising to me was the date and time of the scheduled maintenance: the exact time and date that I had stepped in the shower.

Charlie Brown ain't got nothing on me...

Sunday, January 22, 2012

More Matters Of Timing...Part I

"Oh, rats," as good old Charlie Brown would say.

Do you ever feel that you have the luck of this lovable loser? You know, the whole when it rains, it pours syndrome and you forgot your umbrella and parked your car at the very end of the parking lot which is now a newly formed lake.

To make matters worse, everything in your shopping cart is perishable and you ordered a pizza to have delivered to your house but now the road is shut down do to the flash flooding that is taking place.

In other words, your timing STINKS!

This happened to me the other day. I got up at my normal time, took my first pill of the day that has to be taken on an empty stomach and went for my morning walk. (That's my latest self-improvement project. I walk for thirty minutes while I let the medicine absorb into my body.) After that, I had breakfast and caught up on some reading. Friend had mentioned that she wanted to check out the new antique store that had just opened uptown, so I went to hop in the shower.

Unfortunately, I had eaten bacon and eggs for breakfast, along with three cups of coffee and now my guts were roiling.

This delayed my entry into the shower by a good ten minutes.

Routine is everything when I'm in the shower. Here's how it is supposed to go:

Turn on water and adjust accordingly before entering shower
Enter shower
Wet body and hair
Open shampoo, lather, rinse, repeat
Keeping shampoo on head in full lather during second washing while washing other parts of the body

...and that's when the trouble started

I was lost somewhere in song (singing I got the moves like Jagger) when I noticed the steady stream of water bursting from my shower head had started to lessen, to recede, then trickle and then dribble on down to an occasional drop. What in the world I thought to myself. "Hey," I yelled at Friend. "Are you running water in the kitchen?"

"No, why?" she yelled back...

Friday, January 20, 2012

Calling Publisher's Clearing House...Part II

...I'm sure Publisher's Clearing House receives all sorts of weirdo and wacky phone calls and mine turned out to be no exception:

Publisher's Clearing House (PCH): "Hello, this is Ambrosia. How may I help you?"

MAFW: "Hey, I have a question about an invoice I received?"

PCH: "Okay, not a problem. Do you have the customer order number?"

MAFW: "Yes, it's 24567palm5671985."

PCH: "Could you repeat that, please? I'm showing one letter missing."

MAFW: "Uh, okay. it's 24567palme5671985."

PCH: "Okay, got it. Can you give me the last four digits of your credit card for verification?"

MAFW: "Hold on. I gotta go get it."

PCH: "That's fine, I'll wait."

MAFW: "It's 2837."

PCH: "Okay, got it. Now, could you please tell me your high school mascot for verification?"

MAFW: "Sure, it was a Green Devil."

PCH: "I'm sorry. That's not the information you entered onto your form for security purposes. Could it be something else?"

MAFW: "Hmm, not a Green Devil? Okay, try a Devilish Darling? And my shoe size is 10."

PCH: "Okay, that got it. I didn't need the shoe size, though." (No sense of humor.) "What can I help you with today?"

MAFW: "I received an invoice from you guys and I also received a bill from Vanity Fair. Am I being double-billed?"

PCH: "I'm sorry. I don't understand the question."

MAFW: "Why did you guys send me two separate bills? I thought I was supposed to pay directly to PCH and not worry about any other invoices."

PCH: "Ma'am, according to my records we only sent you one invoice and I don't know anything about the other bill?"

MAFW: "Uh, why not?"

PCH: "Why not, what?"

MAFW: "Why don't you know about the Vanity Fair bill?"

PCH: "Ma'am, Publisher's Clearing House doesn't offer that magazine."

MAFW: "Oh!"

PCH: "Anything else I can help you with? If not, thanks and I hope you win the million dollars!"

Me too, because at the rate I'm going, I'm gonna need a million bucks to pay for all of these magazines...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Calling Publisher's Clearing House...Part I


As many of you know, I tend to get real excited about something and then go way overboard with it. Whether it's discovering a new dish that I've eaten somewhere and then tried to replicate at home, over, and over, and over again until I am completely sick of it. (The latest flavor of the month was a ham and cheddar potato casserole that I've eaten about six times in the last two weeks. Now, I don't even want to eat a potato, which for me is something truly rare.) Or, it could be reading about an event such as an upcoming 10K road race that I want to train for (Okay, maybe not), but you get the drift.

My obsession this time around is magazine subscriptions. It all started a few years ago when my niece sold subscriptions to raise money for her school. I purchased two or three like any good aunt would do and then got trapped. Yep, you know what happens when you get on some company's list: they send you solicitation after solicitation after solicitation and they won't stop. One day, I actually opened (my bad) a letter and read the offer: get two years of Vogue magazine for only $10. What a deal! I've never subscribed to it before, nor have I even looked at one, so why not try it? And that's what I did.

Well, that subscription led to more solicitations and now I have a stack of magazines approaching two feet high that I haven't even turned a page in. (I'm sure the publishers love me and I'm definitely sure the mailman doesn't. LOL)

Anyhow, everything wasn't too bad until I got my Publisher's Clearing House official entry. I'm sure I read somewhere that a purchase isn't necessary to win but I also think I read somewhere else that making a purchase (buying magazines) might definitely help. And talk about deals: 2-for-1 deals, multi-year deals, buy a product and get a lifetime subscription. Man, my eyes had glazed over before I stopped pasting those little stickers to the official entry form--I don't know which magazines I selected, but I'm sure it was 4 or 5.

A few weeks later I received an invoice from Publisher's Clearing House and Vanity Fair on the same day. The bill from Publisher's was for $75-something and the Vanity Fair was for $16-something.

Hmm. Am I being double-billed?

Of course, I didn't write down the magazines that I bought from Publisher's Clearing House and I don't remember anything about Vanity Fair but that doesn't mean that I didn't. (My memory seems to be lost somewhere in the past these days.)

The invoice had an 800-number to call for any questions and after multiple prompts for passwords, credit card info, my shoe-size and my high school mascot's name I found myself talking to a live person...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Confederate Bean Soup...A Paula Deen Recipe

An excellent soup on a winter's day.

The following is a recipe for Confederate Bean Soup:

This a great soup to make when you have leftover baked beans. If you don't have leftovers, you can substitute Bush's baked beans. (I had that and I also added a can of Bush's hot chili beans.)

1/2 pound of smoked sausage, slice in 1/4 in slices (I used a whole pound)
2 slices bacon, diced (I used ham lunchmeat)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, diced (I omitted the onions, because I'm allergic to them)
1/2 green bell pepper, diced (optional) (I didn't choose this option)
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups Bush's baked beans or leftovers
1 1/2 cups half-n-half (I used 2 cups)

Saute sausage, bacon, onions, garlic and peppers in butter until bacon is cooked. Add beans and simmer for a few minutes over medium to low heat. Add half-n-half. Increase or decrease h-n-h for preferred thickness. Serve with hot corn bread. Serves three or four.

I added some black pepper to taste and about a 1/2 cup of shredded cheddar cheese. I was very surprised at how well this soup turned out. I served mine with a bit more cheese, a few saltines and dropped the cornbread on top.

I made enough so that I would have leftovers. The problem is that I forgot I was out of Beano, so I'm sure they'll hear me all the way down in Savannah, at least for a few days!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Brother's Birthday...Year IV


Now, it's time for another birthday. My big brother is celebrating his birthday today. His nickname is Boy, sometimes called Big Boy.

Boy is a fan of WW II and can give you all the information ever needed if you are building a house since he has a background in construction.

He taught me how to play football, throw a baseball for a perfect strike (complete with a full wind up) and how to play chess.

He also taught me how to chew tobacco, scratch my butt, cuss a blue streak, burp the alphabet, throw cow patties, use the tractor and manure spreader to drive to town for hot dogs and Sour Cream Doritos when Mom and Dad were working, castrate a hog and spit and catch loogies.

Most of these tricks I have since out grown! (Most)

However, it is good knowledge to have. You never know when you might need to do some castrating.


So here's to you! Happy Birthday!


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Guess Who Is Playing Peekaboo?





Better late than never--this year's Christmas tree!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Birthday Wishes...Year IV




Today is my sister's birthday. In case anyone wants to know, her nickname is Big Red. Yep, she's got red hair and a fierceness to go along with it.

She resides in the frigid north where it snows all the time. Yuck!

I won't tell you how old she is (38) because that wouldn't be sisterly. She is older than me though.

Happy Birthday Sister! May you have many more and continue to do things that make me laugh.

MAFW

P.S. Your present is still on my counter waiting to be mailed.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Daily Recommendations

Happy New Year!

Since it's a new year, I've decided to eat more healthy, get more exercise, have a better outlook on things and get my daily recommended dose of vitamins and minerals to help me be healthy, wealthy and wise.

As with all such recommendations, there's usually a catch. Namely, you'll go broke!

I'm a sucker for the impulse purchase of a magazine at the checkout line if it has a catchy title. One such magazine recently was First For Women which screamed "Dr. Oz's Rx for extreme weight loss", another headline read "Rev up slow glands" and lastly, "Drop 11 pounds in one week." Holy crap! I had to get this magazine.

After a lunch of tacos and bean burritos, I found myself with time to really delve into my new purchase as I sat trapped on the throne in my lavishly decorated reading room. I quickly found the sections that I was interested in and started reading:

1. Be 100% healthy with coconut---to shed your holiday 10, to dodge colds and flu, to make hair extra soft and shiny, to heal irritated skin, to speed up sluggish glands and to relieve feminine dryness---recommendation: 2 Tbs of coconut oil. Spectrum Naturals Organic Coconut Oil Unrefined ($11 for 14 oz., at VitaminShoppe.com) (Hmm, I do suffer from some of these ailments, maybe, I'll try it.)

2. Drop 11 lbs in 7 days with African mango---too busy to diet or exercise---recommendation: 150 mg of African mango extract. ($21 for 60 capsules, at drugstore.com) (I am really busy.)

3. Too tired to resist carbs---lose 50 lbs in three months with sea buckthorn---recommendation: Sibu Beauty Revitalize & Renew Sea Buckthorn Liquid Supplement. ($18 for 25 oz., at Amazon.com) (I do love me some carbs.)

4. Vitamin A protects against hearing loss---recommendation: 700 mg daily. ($9 for 30 capsules at any fine drug store) (What'd ya say?)

5. Years of fatigue vanished in a week---this brain chemical shortage makes 3 in 4 women tired---recommendation: L-tyrosine, vitamin B6, fava bean extract and mucuna pruriens bean extract supplements. (Balance D, $29 for 60 capsules, at iHerb.com)
(No comment!)

6. Make 2012 your happiest year---reactivate the happiness/energy area of your brain---recommendation: recitation of the Lord's Prayer. (Free)

I stopped reading there because that is the best recommendation I've read about in a long time...and the best part, I didn't have to buy anything, because I already knew it by heart.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year





Happy New Year from all of us at Reflections On A Middle-Aged Fat Woman!

We hope you have a safe and prosperous year!

Do something kind for your self and others and take the time to have a laugh!


Cheers!

Gianetta

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