Sunday, October 30, 2011

Runnin' with the Devil...

Happy Devil's Night! How about this little pumpkin that I put together for friend and fellow Halloween buff, Marty. I saw some pumpkins of this nature pre-made at Micheal's but waited till all the components were 60 percent off to make it myself. Sometimes I shock myself with my sudden bouts of practicality!

As kids when we were stocking up on items for Devil's Night at the local IGA, the cashier would remind us that she knew our parents and that we better not be getting into any trouble tonight. Trouble? Why on earth would the purchase of cheap toilet paper, Barbasol shaving cream, and enough eggs to feed the Dugar family arouse any suspicion? Later on we learned to purchase risky items (Boone's Farm, ciggies, condoms, etc.) at stores where our anonymity was guaranteed. Ahh, the small town lessons learned the old fashioned way-the hard way!

As we struck out on our missions of devilry, things did not always go as planned. Late October in northern Michigan was usually cold and rainy. And we were usually dressed more to look cute than to stay warm. Most often, the toilet paper got more soaked then used for decoration and many an egg was dropped from our cold hands before hitting their mark. Lots of times we ended up throwing them at the boys who were somehow always milling about our circle of girlies. It was revelry that leaded up to the big event that had us hitting up the very same houses for candy. No real damage was done and it was mostly just a way to seem cool and adventurous. And hang out with the boys that were always milling about!

Do kids even participate any more? Doesn't seem to me that today's youth has the gumption to get out there and be silly. Maybe there is a virtual devil's night that can be had while sitting down in front of a computer. Or just maybe some facebook stalking would do the trick. Too bad because being bad used to feel so good! Happy Devil's Night and Happy Halloween! xoxo

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Lion Sleeps Tonight...

Can I just share my idea of a perfect fall Sunday? Slept in late (9:00) and woke to the smell of fresh coffee. Followed my nose down to the kitchen where Mickey anxiously waited for me to get my cup before heading out to get the Sunday paper. Marveled at the beauty of the day and the smell of the crisp, fall air and 65 degree temperature. Had more coffee while perusing the paper with Dane. Got as far as I have ever made it on the Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle. Was treated to a wonderful breakfast cooked by my son that even included the clean up! Decided that a late morning nap was in order. Crashed out with Lola for a heavenly hour before deciding that the day was too lovely to spend indoors. Got in our gear and headed downtown to tailgate with friends and other crazy Lions fans. Ate nachos with yummy Bloody Mary's at Vivio's with our buds. Took the scenic route home showcasing Detroit and avoiding e-way traffic jams. Came back to the ranch, hit the couch and was just plain laaaaaazzzzy. We'll get 'em next time Lions!!

Can't beat that for a Sunday funday! So, how was your day? xo

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Knock on Wood....

I followed the Amanda Knox case since the 2007 when her roommate Meredith Kercher, was found brutally assaulted and murdered at their apartment in Perugia, Italy. I was fascinated by the whole idea of a young girl being murdered by another young girl. Motive? Means? Opportunity? Accident? I just had to understand how in the world this could happen. Admittedly the case was hard to follow. Botched crime scene, sketchy DNA, and language barriers are just some of the overwhelming factors in the case. I was constantly confused. I even read a whole book on the case recently and still have come away unclear. Even with lack of evidence, Amanda still came off guilty to me. I learned that in Italy, Amanda was held without bail for 4 years until it was decided that she was innocent.

Four years in prison waiting to be found innocent.....I just have to process that one. Can any of us afford to lose 4 years? Amanda was approximately 21 at the time of her incarceration and 25 at her final release. What did she miss out on in that time? I think of the very same years in my life and it went something like this:

Between the ages of 21 and 22, I broke off an engagement, met a new man and got engaged again and married in the same year. It was a whirlwind for sure, and more time spent thinking and less time at the disco would have been advisable. Between ages 23 and 25 I had a baby and got divorced. Both were wonderful decisions and did not need much forethought. By the end of my 25Th year, I was moving on as a single mother. And the bar now had a electronic bull and bales of hay!!

Back then, I tended to be hardheaded, immature and learned everything the hard way. I have since then learned to slow down, be less impulsive, and ask for help. Amanda did not have a chance to finish her education in Perugia-but I graduated from the school of hard knocks, with honors. Never one for regrets, I can look back on the error of my ways and chalk it up simply to immaturity. It's the very thing that has made me who I am.

But how about Amanda? Did she just miss out on some of life's learning curve? Will she make her life choices more carefully now that she has had so much time for reflection? Only time will tell. Good luck, Amanda. Breathe the fall air of freedom and enjoy your days as your get your feet back under you and move on with your life.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Baby, Baby...

So, having babies is a natural part of life, right? Why then, are we so fascinated by stories of birth and babies? First there was the 'Octomom' in all her in-vitro, secret baby daddy, surgery to look like Angelina Jolie, posing nude to support her brood NUTTINESS. Yes, she was the proverbial train wreck that truly was hard to look away from, especially because the media was apparently starved for real news. Then somehow the fascination continued when the idea of Kate Gosselin and her 'plus eight' became worthy of a television series. During prime time. Really? I hate reality t.v. and this convinced me why. Staged chaos is idiotic and so is exploiting the babies.

A dear friend of mine was one of nine children and tells real stories of growing up in a large family. I know of another couple who had a baby at fifteen years old and then delivered twins nine months later. Can you even imagine being 16 with 3 children under the age of 1? Now that was a wild reality that was survived with love and dignity. (Mom and Dad are still married!)

I read in the paper today that a woman delivered a baby after running half of a 26 mile marathon. Huh? Why weren't you home with your feet elevated eating 'Heavenly Hash' ice cream-my favorite indulgence during gestation. I could hardly 'run' to the bathroom hours before delivering my son!

And then there is that show that shows women having babies that DIDN'T REALIZE THEY WERE PREGNANT! That's the one that blows my mind. I knew I was with child the very next morning when my beloved coffee turned my stomach. I mean weren't the sore breasts, swollen ankles, and the giant pony keg belly a dead give away? I knew a girl in junior high that was doing cartwheels in the yard the night before she had a baby that she was not expecting. Another acquaintance thought she was gaining weight until her stomach ache proved to be labor pains. And both of the girls parents involved were in total shock. So I guess it does happen, but mostly to very young girls. Still, the phenomenon confounds me..

I always wanted a second child, but it was not in the cards for me. I'm anxious for the day to be a 'Nanna' but that won't be happening anytime soon. So, for now my granddog Mickey will have to sit in, or sit ON which is usually the case. Enjoy the gorgeous fall weather friends. xoxo

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Emotional Rescue...

Just a reminder that October 02-08 is Mental Illness Awareness Week. As many of you know, it is my 'cause'. With an estimated 50 million people suffering some sort of mental illness, thats approximately 22 percent of Americans. And millions more are diagnosed with other forms of the illness-as well as those who haven't been diagnosed at all! I grit my teeth at the fact that breast cancer gets the whole month of October. Mental Illness Awareness gets a short blip on page 6. Could we please give 7 lousy days for this rampant, tragic disease? Please educate yourself, donate and/or pray for victims, caregivers and their families.

In other news, 21,000 Detroiters are on the verge of losing their welfare benefits. Really? What in the hell are these people supposed to do? As we support crisis situations all over the world, we have children hungry here in our own backyard. It makes me sick and guilty over my personal abundance of food and the utter lack of worry over it. I can't tell you when the last time I was desperately hungry. And how will rent and utilities be paid? Of course, crime will go up statewide for those left with no options. I know welfare benefits are designed to be a safety net and not a generational way of life, but this could not come at a worse time with our struggling economy. I have friends that suffered from our poor job market, even with a roof over their heads and food in the refrigerator. Detroit has very little employment available in the city and no way for people to get to other places with our lack of public transportation. Child care is an issue. Desperate times will surely call for desperate measures.

At least we have our Tigers in the playoffs and the Lions have 4 wins under their belt-- a welcome distraction. I know, trivial in light of mental illness and lost benefits, but still, a chance for our fair city to shine itself up. It's hard to believe that our million dollar athletes playing in our million(s) dollar parks are just around the corner from people struggling every day. What irony. I wish I knew what to do about it or how to help.

Have a great weekend and be grateful for our bounty, because there, for the grace of God, go us.