Monday, April 30, 2012

The Carpenters and the Yellow Brick Road

When I was younger, I knew all the words to all the songs on the radio.  If I turn on the 70's station today, I can still sing all those songs, and remember the lyrics.  I can't tell you what I had for lunch yesterday, but I can sing, "Afternoon Delight" from start to finish.

I tried to sing along with a  song yesterday, ha ha ha.  It's a recent song and I can't begin to tell you what any of the words were. All I heard was "nah nah nah bla bla bla."  Why can't I figure out what's being said nowadays?  Why was it so easy when I was younger?

I think I paid more attention back then.  The songs meant the world to me and they shaped me.  They sang to me.  They spoke about my heartache, love at age 12, and being on top of the world!

I had one of those record players that would play both albums and 45's.  I'll hear songs and remember the way the label looked on the 45.  I think one of the first 45s I can remember is, "Ride Captain Ride."  My brother bought that one.  How much did they cost back then, 99 cents?

I listened to The Carpenters over and over. I tried to sing like Karen Carpenter, and learned a lot of musical phrasing from her.  Her sad songs were so darn sad.  I still feel sad when I hear her sing.

I listened to Goodbye Yellow Brick Road over and over again, and didn't understand half of what I heard.  (Pinball Wizard? Really?)  I still don't understand most of it, but boy those are some good songs. 

I would sing along to John Denver, Barry Manilow, Linda Ronstadt, Barbra Streisand and any show tune you could imagine.  I spent hours upon hours in my room singing the albums from beginning to end.  Man, those were the days.  Maybe that's what I need to do this weekend?  Lock myself in my bedroom and sing for hours?

What albums did you have as a kid?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Getting Ready for Cinco De Mayo

Here in the Creek, we don't have very many nice restaurants.  We have plenty of fast food joints, a Waffle House, and a few small independent places that I'm a bit afraid of...

However, we do have two really good Mexican restaurants, one of which, we frequent quite regularly.  La Hacienda is five minutes from our house.  We love the staff, I love the food and the margaritas, Sir Steven loves the big beers.  (note:  he doesn't eat Mexican food, but has been known to order from the kids menu when needed)

Last night, Sir and I went out with a friend from work. !  We enjoyed "Live Guacamole!"  They made the guac at our table, and it was delicious!  There were TWO whole avocados, tomato, onion, cilantro and jalapenos in there.  YUM-OLA.    Sarah and I shared the live guac and also shared the 24 Karat Gold Margarita.  (secret ingredient:  Sunny Delight.  I kid you not)

It was a fun evening topped off by Sarah's visit to our abode to meet the animals.  I think she wanted to steal Charlie, but we'd notice if he was missing.  For one thing, our food bill would decrease significantly.


She also spied this little gem we have on our shelf.  I hadn't really looked at this in years.  Great game, great memories.  Well done Dad.

(thanks to Sarah and SS for the pictures.  And the fun!!)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A Wee Thought For a Thursday

Still getting caught up on life and sleep.  But, this is what I'm thinking about today:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Closing the Book on Vacation

We are home.  I am in my bed.  I've seen my child, and eaten a home cooked meal.  I've taken two naps in my bed.  I sat in my spot on the couch.  I recorded bank receipts and caught up my checkbook and paid some bills. 

But, before the new week begins, and this vacation becomes even more of a memory, I want to revisit some of the highlights and the very few low lights. 

I love seeing things I've never seen before:

-new people
-new places
-Puget Sound
-West Seattle
-Alki Beach

-Pike Place Market
-Elliot Bay
-Downtown Seattle
-Vancouver Canuck game with Canucks fans
-Gastown in Vancouver
-Listel Hotel
-Canadian Cider
-Granville Island Lager
-Hot Shot
-Lemon Drop Martinis
-Tulips everywhere
-Corner shops with candy, chips and drinks
-Riding the train when no one was talking

I love seeing things from home in cities I'm visiting:

-Subway Tuna (loved ordering this in Canada!)
-A&E and Discovery ID on TV
-Good Morning America!  (even if tape delayed)
-Reading my book at home, in Seattle, Vancouver and finishing it just before getting back home

And, things I couldn't get used to:
-Pacific Time Zone
-No iced tea in Vancouver
-More expensive gas
-No state income taxes, so BIG sales tax
-No ceiling fan in the hotel room or cottage
-the really talkative man who yakked for four hours from Vancouver to Seattle (dude, take a breath)

-All the folks who carry on their luggage
-That darn middle seat on the plane
-Missing my animals and that daughter

So, thank you for the memories Pacific Northwest.  You are gorgeous.  

And little town in South Carolina?  I'm glad to be back to your comfortable-ness. It is oh so true, there's no place like home.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Vancouver 1 - JuJu 0

I am too old for a pub crawl.
I am too old for a pub crawl.
I am too old for a pub crawl.

In case I ever forget this again, I hope you all will remind me of this post.

We started our Wednesday in Vancouver in the Gastown District.  This is a shopping/dining area of Vancouver.  We're really not into shopping all that much, so we just focused on the little souvenir shops (which are everywhere) and the restaurants and bars.

 My favorite souvenir shop had these two beasts inside:

Gastown is named after some guy who was known to be quite the talker and was filled with a lot of hot air.  I know quite a few people who fit that description.  I hope if anyone ever makes a statue of me that I don't appear to be inebriated.

We found an Irish pub that was showing English Football.  (follow?)  This is where our pub crawl began in earnest.  We watched a great game, enjoyed talking to the bartenders, learned all about the use of "eh" in Canada-Speak and just had an overall great time.  We were also pleased to find out that no matter where we go, Manchester United is represented.

This is also the place and time where we heard of Dick Clark's passing.  I always loved Dick Clark, and not just on New Year's Eve.  The $25,000 Pyramid remains one of my favorites of all times.  Thanks for the great memories Mr. Clark!

 After spending much too much time and money at the Lamplighter, we headed back to Robson Street and our hotel location.  I finally got some sushi.  The tuna was so darn tender, it just melted in my mouth.

It was playoff hockey last night and we finished our VERY LONG day at a corner pub watching the Vancouver Canucks defeat the LA Kings.  It was a fun evening, but we are very very tired today.  And my tummy is really really mad at me.  

Back to Seattle tomorrow for one more day and home on Saturday.  It's been quite an adventure, but I'm about ready to be back in the land of mosquitoes, humidity, and iced tea.  (ANGIE!)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Across the Border

We had a marvelous ride on an Amtrak train today, from Seattle to Vancouver.  It was such a relaxing way to travel.  We had tons of leg room, the scenery was gorgeous, and we made it easily into Canada.

We followed the coastline the entire trip, and saw so many interesting animals, birds, houses and little coastal towns.  I liked this backyard, I can't remember the last time I saw a tire swing?

The train station was nice on both ends.  And, I must say, I've never seen a sushi shop in any train/bus station before, but today was a new adventure....


I feel like the biggest loser.  I STILL haven't had any sushi on this trip.  But, tomorrow is the day folks.  Tomorrow is the day. 

We are staying at a hotel that is very "art" oriented.  There are sculptures and paintings galore. This isn't arty, but I sure do love it---  (yes, they are hanging in the VERY clean shower)

Our phones quit working as soon as we crossed the border.  Well, they work, but it costs an arm and a leg.  Restrooms are washrooms. And there's this funny money everywhere.

I always think other countries money is so much more interesting.  I'm sure it's because I'm used to looking at George and Abe for so many years.

And there's strange words all over everything.

We're not in Kansas anymore Dorothy.

Oh, we've made some new friends too.  They're a bit transparent though...

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Days Two and Three

(warning, lots of photos!)

This is what I've learned about Seattle in the 48 hours that I've been here:

Rain?  What rain?  We've had sunny skies and glorious temps in the 60s since we arrived.

Fish and coffee are a big deal out here.  

Dogs are everywhere.   Big dogs, small dogs, hairy dogs.  EVERYWHERE.

A lemon shot martini is about the best drink I've ever tasted.

Wine tastings rock on both coasts.

The folks are pretty darn friendly.

The combination of water and mountains is breathtaking.

Did I mention the dogs?

Tulips!  Tulips!  Tulips!  Heaven for this tulip lover.

Manchester United games are shown everywhere.  Even 8:00 on a Sunday morning.  At Mick Kelly's Irish Pub.  When the Ju was sleepy from the time change.  (they won!)

I keep expecting to see Meredith and Derek, but so far, nothing.

More adventures tomorrow! 


Friday, April 13, 2012

Day Uno

We made it!  We left our house at 5:30 Eastern time.  Our body clocks are telling us it's now 10:44, but we're ignoring that clock.

Our flights were great!  We transferred in Minneapolis; landed at F4, took off from gate F6. I love it when that happens. 

We played Yahtzee and Monopoly on the plane.  I was the dog, Steven was the race car.  That game is still ongoing.  Shocker.

Steven had the window seat, I had the middle seat.  The guy in the aisle seat took up a LOT of space.  And  a LOT of the arm rest.  I felt contorted for three hours, but that was probably the only negative of the day.

Oh wait, there was one more negative ---  Margaret, at the Avis Rental Car counter.  Margaret obviously works on commission.  She didn't appreciate the fact that we didn't upgrade anything.  By the end of our transaction, Margaret wasn't nearly as friendly as she was at the beginning.

This little northwestern town of Burien, Washington reminds me so much of my favorite place in the world.  (Bryson City, NC)  We had dinner at Angelos, and it was obvious that Angelos has been around for awhile.

The weather is awesome.  Chilly and sunny.  

Our little cottage is divine.   We haven't been in the hot tub yet, that is happening after this blog is posted.  The cottage has two cats, Tiger and Corkscrew.  Tiger has been sitting on my lap.  I love Tiger.  Oh, and I'm listening to the Missouri Tigers play baseball as I write all this. Heaven?  Whoops.  Tigers just lost in the bottom of the 10th.  I spoke too soon.

Mountains and water are everywhere.  People are friendly.  It's only Day One.  Ahhh.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Things I like:

Grey's Anatomy on the DVR
squirrels eating cheerios in my backyard

Things I don't like:

white rice
that greasy grime on the kitchen stove
night sweats

Things I like:

stripes and polka dots
the keyboard on my blackberry
leather bracelets

Things I don't like:

long eyebrow hairs on men
condensation on glasses  (drinking)

Things I like:

the colon  (the punctuation, not the body part)
exclamation points

Things I don't like:

cooked celery
going to the dentist
know it alls

Things I like:

Beauty and the Beast (Disney, not CBS)
playing cards
puppy breath

Monday, April 9, 2012

Monday Randoms after Easter

I'm writing with a very full belly.  Burp.

Easter was a bit of a pffffffft for me.  We went to a friend's house. Taylor met up with us.  She was there less than thirty seconds when a dog bit her in the hand.  It was such a freak accident.  It scared her, hurt her, and made her very self conscious.  She left.  I felt awful and tried to act like I didn't feel awful for the remainder of the day.  {She's okay, just very sore.} 

I made Jambalaya Saturday night.  I used to make it all the time back in the day, but this is the first time in over ten years.  It was still hot, spicy and made me sweat!  SUCCESS.

I'm in pre-vacation mode.  That means I'm making tons of lists, stressing about getting things done, and having pre-vacation panic.  I do have a really nifty new suitcase.  I think I'll recognize this puppy coming down the luggage ramp:

I miss my animals so much when I'm on vacation.

Steven and I celebrated our, "it's been 13 years since we met" anniversary yesterday.  He bought me a lovely bottle of wine, and I bought him some readers with lights.  He's thrilled by his gift.  (seriously!)

I read today that Vivien Leigh was bi-polar.  I had never heard that before.

We bought tickets to see Earth, Wind & Fire in June.  That should take me back thirty years or so.

I did make some good deviled eggs for Easter.  But, lordy be, I cannot boil them right so that they are easy to peel.  I've tried so many methods, but still struggle with teeny tiny egg pieces.  Any and all suggestions are appreciated.  I've probably tried it, but maybe your way is the one that will finally work for me?

Best Easter Candy:   Bubble gum that looks like eggs.  They taste great for about 30 seconds and then become hard as a rock.

Best Easter Dress ever worn by Taylor:

LOVE the feet.