Monday, August 31, 2009

Driving Through Iowa

My brother called me last week as he was driving through Iowa. He had been listening to "Mike & Mike in the Morning" on ESPN Radio. They were discussing the Jets rookie quarterback, Mark Sanchez. Sanchez is out of USC and is the first rookie to start as QB (for the Jets Franchise) since Dick Jamieson in 1960.

Big deal, eh?

Well, it's a huge deal to my brother. And to me. And to the rest of my family. You see Dick Jamieson is my dad. We knew he played pro football and baseball. My mother kept scrapbooks with articles on his career. We always had a football card lying around the house, in the drawer next to the couch. He went on to coach, and to be honest, we know much more about his coaching career then his playing career. My dad was a very humble man, and didn't spend time talking about himself.

Dad died in 2001. So, for my brother to be driving through Iowa, and to hear this remote (and impressive!) fact about our dad, was a treat! To hear his name, and to learn more about him was a blessing for all of us. It also reminds me to try to write down some of the important and even the not so important events in my life, in case my children or grandchildren are ever interested, and I encourage you all to do the same for your families. There is so much I'll never know about my parents. But, at least we were gifted this little snippet, eh???

Broadway Joe? Pshaw. Dick Jamieson was the MAN!

(Below is part of an article that appeared in the NY Times last week, regarding the same information)

Sanchez to Start as Jets Quarterback

Published: August 26, 2009
In late March, at a private workout in Southern California, Mark Sanchez left an impression that raised the Jets’ interest level in him from serious to smitten.

Coach Rex Ryan had found his quarterback, and everything that happened afterward — the Jets’ trading up to draft Sanchez with the No. 5 pick, the quarterback competition, the rookie’s ascension to the top of the depth chart — started there. The Jets officially made Sanchez their quarterback Wednesday, the latest step in his rise to franchise cornerstone.

“I’m doing the right thing for this organization,” Ryan said. “That’s what my heart tells me.”
In reality, the Jets had decided on Sanchez long before they wrote his name on the depth chart with pen instead of pencil. They gave Sanchez every opportunity — and the richest contract in team history, with $28 million guaranteed — to win the job.

His opposition was Kellen Clemens, who always ends up on the wrong side of these quarterback competitions, behind Chad Pennington, Brett Favre and now Sanchez.

Despite Sanchez’s struggles against the Baltimore Ravens in his second preseason game Monday night, once Ryan was certain of his decision, he wasted no time in announcing it. Ryan delivered the news with typical confidence. He said he had solicited trusted mentors for advice but made the decision the way he made most important choices, with his instincts.

Barring injury, Sanchez will become the first rookie to start the opener at quarterback for the franchise since Dick Jamieson for the Titans in 1960. Not even Joe Namath started the first game of his rookie season, although he was starting by the third. And the last rookie quarterback to start even one game for the Jets was Matt Robinson in 1977.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Darn Good Thursday Night

Ahhhhhhhhh. This is how I like to end my workday and begin my evening. When I come home from work, I head to the the bathtub, pour in some bubbles (My favorite is Kiss My Face - Peaceful Patchouli) and do a crossword. (in pencil, Angie) There are some nights the cats will join me. (not IN the tub, mind you, but next to it.)

Once I've left the watery bliss, I get my computer, something to drink, and plant myself on the couch. I usually begin the evening with a re-run of Beverly Hills 90210. We've probably seen every episode close to 100 times, and I'm not exaggerating. Yet, we continue to watch as if we have no idea who Donna will marry!

As I sit on the couch, I always have company.
If I should get up for any reason, she steals my spot.
How can I move that little curled up ball?

Sometimes, Steven will sit out here with me. More often than not, he is working on some photos on his computer. Right now, I'm hearing Tina Turner come from his room. Tonight, the ipod is on Shuffle, so no telling what the next song will be. Such an adventure on Bronwen Court!
After blogging, facebooking and catching up on the news of the world, I'll turn on another re-run and chill. I love any kind of Law and Order. My favorite is Criminal Intent, but SVU certainly makes me smile. (I can't wait to find out what happens to that co-ed!)
I love Thursday nights, they're so relaxing. The weekend is just around the corner, holding so much possibility. So, after all this hard work I've done this evening, I'll now go do my FAVORITE thing. Ahhhhhhhhhh.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Worlds Colliding

For the past six years, my brother and his family have come to South Carolina for their vacation. They rent a house at the beach and we spend the week digging holes, drinking margaritas and catching up on our lives. I get to spend time with my nephews and Taylor gets to be around family.
We have discovered that we all have a mutual love of margaritas, thus the picture.

This summer, the Beach time coincided with the English surprise. (see previous post) I had no idea how this would play out, as we'd be throwing all different kinds of people together. But, I discovered when you add a lovely beachfront home, good food, Wii games and sunshine, you get a great time out of the deal, no matter who the people are.

There were games of Bocce Ball, boogie boarding, book reading, sunburns, burned feet and bug bites. We sat on the porch that overlooked the water, and just chilled. We laughed as my nephews told us tales. We had a Wii bowling tournament, in which everyone participated. (Taylor was the ultimate winner, congrats to her!) My sister in law made some wonderful spicy shrimp and we enjoyed margaritas with the shrimp.

We did find time twice during the week to venture out to eat at Mellow Mushroom. Man, they have the best pizza.

And, I love being able to see my kid(s) spend time with their cousins.

This year was extra special, as we were able to spend time with family AND friends at the same time. I think we've begun a new family tradition! (Who wants a margarita?!)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Secret Secret, I HAD a Secret

I have been keeping a secret for almost a year now. And, it just about killed me.

Steven grew up in England and when he decided to live here permanently, one of the things he knew he would miss the most is his friends. A year ago, these two fellas (Matt and Paul) decided, over a few beers, that they would fly to America and surprise Steven. Paul would fly over from England, and Matt would get here from wherever he happened to be at the moment. Excellent idea, right? But, they needed help with the surprise, and this is where I came into play.

Matt contacted me via Facebook, told me of their plan, and asked for my assistance in making it all happen. No problem, right? I am, after all, the Queen of Planning. But, then I realized what this meant. I would not be able to discuss this with Steven. I wouldn't be able to plan with him, make arrangements, shop for food, do a thorough cleaning, or even change sheets without him suspecting something! This was a huge task for me, as I share just about everything with Steven. The only things I don't share are the things I don't remember. My life is an open book. No secrets. But wait, I would have to keep my mouth SHUT, and SHUT for a long time. Folks, this was NO easy task for me.

As the time drew near, I became increasingly nervous, so much had to go right. Matt had been living in Hong Kong the last year studying, and then traveled through the western US and down through Mexico, Central America, flew to Miami and then bussed (yes, by GREYHOUND!) to Charleston. His bus arrived at 3:00. His brother, who he had not seen in a year, flew from England, via Atlanta, and his flight arrived at 4:00. I had to find a way out of the house, pick both up and get them back here in one piece. Steven was shooting a wedding that day, so luck was on my side. I had worried for months about it all coming together, but when it came down to it, it was easier said than done. Eveyone was on time, no complications and the surprise was classic.

All the worry, stress, secret keeping and planning was well worth it. Steven was so thrilled and happy to see his friends and spend the last 10 days with them. They caught up on all their mutual friends, played endless games of Scrabble, drank loads of beer, swam in the surf, found sand dollars, drank more beer, watched football (English football), played the Wii, giggled, teased and just enjoyed the very special camaraderie that boys seem to have.

We all get so caught up in the material gifts we give each other. I know I stress on end about the perfect birthday and Christmas gift. But, when I saw the happiness these three felt while together, it reminded me that the best gift we can give is ourselves, and our time. I felt very honored to be a part of this secret and making it all happen. I have many more blogs to share about this great surprise and all that happened while they were here. But, for today, I just want to sit here and reflect on the special time we all had, as a result of this SECRET.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

New Background

Does everyone else find this as challenging as I do? I fully intended to blog tonight, but instead, got stuck in with changing my background and colors. What a PAIN!

It reminds me a lot of clothes shopping, all that "trying on" is really annoying. (and much of it doesn't fit!)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


This is NOT the blog I have in my head waiting to write.

But, last night, I had a dream that I had a big party with all my blogging friends. It was really nice to hang out with everyone in one location. Of course, I don't remember the location, I just remember the good feeling to meet everyone in person.

I'm sure we had a great time, ate great food, and told great stories, then went home and blogged about it.

But, I woke up, so I really can't tell you anything other than the fact that I met all of you last night, and I sure enjoyed it!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Big ol Blog

I've got a big blog waiting to be written. Just wanted you to know.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Boys Will Be Boys

It doesn't matter where a boy is born. It could be Missouri, South Carolina, or England.
Put them on a beach and they have to dig.

Not only do they have to dig, they have to dig holes.

Some will make great plans about the holes.

Some will make a very neat, tidy, precise hole.

Some will create a wall to protect their hole.

There is always one boy who will supervise.

And one who creates outside the box.

They don't need to talk. They communicate silently with that boy language. I saw a neat thing this weekend. That boy language is universal. There are no language or age barriers when it comes to hole diggin'.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Randomly Friday

Just a few thoughts that have been up in my brain this week:

  • I've been applying mascara for close to 32 years, give or take a few years. And, I don't think I've found one, yet, that lengthens my lashes. I've tried just about every brand. I keep going back to the Maybelline one with the pink body and green lid. Curved brush.

  • I'm currently watching one of my all time favorite Seinfeld episodes. It is, "The Boyfriend." In it, Jerry is hanging out with Keith Hernandez, George is trying to scam the unemployment office (Van De Lay Industries), Kramer and Newman re-tell their Keith Hernandez experience, and Elaine ends up dating Keith Hernandez until she discovers he smokes. CLASSIC.

  • We have a big old banana spider in our back yard right now. I am amazed at the size of the web she has spun. This lady puts me to shame.

  • Taylor starts college in 17 days.

  • I'm excited to see "Julie & Julia." I love the idea that it all started from a blog. Another blog that would make a great movie is Pioneer Woman. I hope someone will do that, although I can't imagine any actress being able to catch the spirit of Ree.

  • How good looking is Robert Redford in "The Sting?" Man, I used to have the biggest crush on him. Yowza.

  • I love the look of those red Dell mini laptops. I think it would fit in nicely with my current red phase.

  • I miss reading "The Far Side" on a daily basis. My favorite is the kid at the gifted school pushing the door when it clearly says, "Pull."

  • When I was in college, there was a bar on campus called, "The Shack." (It was the only place that would serve underage folks) It was a nasty little hole in the wall. They served one food item: pumpernickel bagels with cream cheese, and a pickle on the side. What I wouldn't give for one of those right now.

  • I wish I knew how to pick a good wine, and that I could learn to enjoy red wine.

  • Robert Redford also looked pretty hot in "The Way We Were." But, I didn't care for that movie. But oh, when he wears that turtleneck---YOWZA.

  • John Hughes sure made some great movies. Sixteen Candles and Uncle Buck are in my top 10 of all time movies.

  • I'm really into Nick Drake right now.

  • Which one of the Jonas Brothers is supposed to be the cute one?

  • I love twinkle lights.

  • If you ever want to watch a sweet movie, check out, "Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont." It is priceless.

  • I bought three new books today: Picking Cotton, Comfort Food, and Julie & Julia. I felt like a kid in the candy shop at Barnes and Noble.

  • I've never seen Pretty Woman.

  • Come to think of it, Robert Redford just looks good. Y O W Z A. Happy Friday!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Birth of a Nickname

All of my life I've wanted a nickname. My given name is Judith, and everyone calls me Judi. Steven tells me that is a nickname. Uh, no. That's just the shortened version of Judith.

I didn't play any sports in school, so no chance for nicknames there. I was in choir and band, but "Soprano" and "Flute Player" just never rolled off anyone's tongue. I have two older brothers, you would think these two yahoos would have been able to come up with something/anything?

Sadly, no. They just pretended they didn't have a little sister.

I went through high school, college and the first forty years of my life without a nickname. I met Steven and as he told tales of his friends, I realized that everyone in the world, other than me, has a nickname. His was Mabel. He has a friend, Paul, whose nickname is Horris. Chris is Kramer. There was a kid in his school they named Wub. My grandmother would speak of her siblings, and I would get so confused. They all had two or three different names. I grew up thinking there were about fifteen kids in her family. (I kid you not!) I mean, the list goes on and on. My brother Jeff is known as Jamie, and my other brother is known as TJ. Me? Judi. Plain old boring brown haired AVERAGE Judi. No nickname Judi.

I started complaining about this plight a few years ago. Some friends of mine even attempted to come up with a few names. Here's a few that never stuck: Chicken Crap and Zippy. Steven said they wouldn't stick, because there was nothing behind them, no story, no history. And he's right. When it's not natural, it just doesn't work.

Then, came along this little guy. I knew him before he could talk. I knew him before he could walk! He couldn't say Judi, and so he began saying JuJu. And guess what? It STUCK!! And, I finally have my nickname. And I love it. It came from one of my favorite little boys. As many of you have noticed, I use the moniker for all my on line postings. My friends and even my family have started using this as a term of endearment for me. It makes me so happy to have a nickname.

I wasn't going to put this picture on here, but the fact that this expression on my face didn't scare the child away from me made me realize how very much I love that my nickname came from the mouth of this babe.

My nickname giver was in town this weekend. I hadn't seen him since Christmas. (his mean mom and dad moved to Oklahoma for stupid Air Force stuff!!) He came to the top of the step and yelled to me, "JuJu!!!" Awwwwww. That made me feel so happy to hear him call my NICKNAME.

And, really, JuJu is so much better than Chicken Crap.