Conversation from the backseat…

Finn had a Pepsi in the backseat on our way home from SuperTarget about half an hour away.

He starts the discussion with, “Guess how much sugar there is.”

Me: “Tell me.”

F: “69 sugar.”

Tully: “Let me see that.  69 grams of sugar.”

M: “That’s a lot of sugar.”

F: “Yeah, but I’m going to drink it anyway.  Look, Tully, it won’t make you fat!  It says ‘zero fat’.”

T: “You wanna hear the ingredients?  Carbonated water…(lists several ingredients)…natural flavoring.”

F: “What’s natural flavoring?”

T: “I don’t know.  Maybe if Pepsi were found naturally in the world, this is what it would taste like.  Like a river of Pepsi.”

F: “And Swedish Fish for fish.”

T: “Yeah, giant schools of Swedish fish.”

F: “And gummy sharks.  Giant Swedish Fish are gummy sharks.”

T: “Sharks aren’t just big fish.  Well, they are… big fish, just not…you know.”

F: “In Finding Nemo the sharks were really big.”

T: “Yeah, and Dory got a nosebleed.  Blood will drive sharks crazy.  Sharks don’t want to bite people, but if you are in the water with a lot of sharks and you’re bleeding, you are pretty much dead.”

F: “What if sharks had legs?  What if their tail fin was legs? Haha!  What if they had horse legs?!”

T: “Then we’d all pretty much be dead.”

F: “They’d be like a centaur – a shark-kaur.”

T: “A shark-taur.”

F: “I wish I was a centaur.”

T: “That would be cool but hard to get in the car.”

F: “I could just run along side the car.”

T: “You’d probably get tired.”

F: “I could live in the wild.”

T: “Living in the wild wouldn’t keep you from being tired.  Horses get tired.”

M: “I’d miss you if you lived in the wild.”

F: “I’d visit the neighborhood and they’d have signs that said, ‘Watch out for centaurs crossing the street.'”

T: “Centaur crossings?”

Then Finn fell asleep.

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Good idea Monday

Calling out to CeeLo, Pharell, Usher, etc.  This week’s good idea Monday is this:

Take one member of Backstreet Boys, NSync, Boyz II Men, One Direction and New Kids on the Block and create a Super Boy Band.  But not a Super Man Band – that would be different.  Do you think Superman could sing?  Probably wasn’t a great dancer either.  Too bulky.  Maybe could’ve done the fist pump thing those Jersey Shore-ers did.

Good idea #2:

Someone animate a short of Superheros living at the Jersey Shore.

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Whatchyadoin? Wednesday…

It’s Whatchyadoin? Wednesday!  Wednesday shall be the day that I show you what projects I’m working on.  It might be a craft I’m doing or a recipe I’ve tried or a story I’ve written…

This week I’m working on a baby blanket for a little boy who is due to make his big arrival this month.  I’ve been making blankets for a few years now.  I’m certainly not an expert, but it’s fun and I love that I can give brand new people a gift that I made with my own hands.

This blanket is a knit wave pattern that I got from Lion Brand.  I thought it was fun because the baby will be named Noah, and rather than do a Noah’s Ark quilt I hooked into the water theme.

I’m about a quarter of the way through the blanket now – hopefully I’ll have it done soon so that little Noah can get a warm hug from this old auntie!

wave blanket - groovy!

wave blanket – groovy!

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They say it happens in threes…death, bad news, etc.  My father was the town crier for the grim reaper.  Every month my dad would post an RIP message on Facebook notifying everyone of the loss of a celebrity.  All of the time we mourn the loss of people we’ve allowed to be part of our family simply by turning on a television or going to the movies.  Sometimes we say, “He was still alive?” because some people we will swear had been dead for years.  Other times we will say, “Oh, that’s so sad.”

This week the media was flooded with Stuart Scott’s face and words.  I don’t begrudge him the tributes.  He sounds like a great man with a lot left to offer the world.  Many people will miss him – his family, his friends, his fans.  Because he sat in front of a camera and talked at us about things that some of us found interesting, the world celebrated the man who had lost his battle with cancer.

The thing is, today (or I guess yesterday now), someone in my graduating class so many years ago lost her battle with cancer.  She was 43 years old, had a family who loved her and an amazing smile.  We were friends in high school.  We’d drifted apart (military brats) over the years, but I was lucky enough to enjoy her smile peeking out on Facebook.

So, why does she deserve any less celebration?  Why does anyone who leaves behind people who will miss them deserve less?

I remember watching reactions to the news that people had died – Kennedy, Diana, John Lennon – people who had never met the deceased sobbed and screamed.  When Phil Hartman died, and again when Robin Williams died, I felt a disbelief and strange emptiness.  They weren’t my friends.  I’d never taken a Government class with them, or danced with them at prom; and yet, I felt a sort of grief.  I find myself feeling the same grief for Kat, despite sharing real life experiences.  I guess distance and detachment lend to this sort of grief.

The news of this loss has come exactly one week after the loss of my daughter’s friend’s mother (and my friend).  Again I find myself heartbroken for a family who will wake up tomorrow morning without a mom, wife, sister, daughter.  I think that’s really the unifying factor.  I recall Oprah talking about lowest common denominators.  Loss is truly one of them.  Knowing that someone has lost the person they loved more than anything in the world – whether they be a mom from Texas or a sportscaster – is heartbreaking.  Knowing that grief will bitch-slap you when you least expect it – and there is nothing you can do about it – is terrifying.

In the end, my head understands the circle of life – death is part of life – and all of those other truisms.  But today, my heart breaks for a family.

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Good idea Monday…

After much thought I finally decided to come up with a plan for this blog.  So far it’s been willy nilly, so starting today Monday shall be known as “Good Idea Monday.”  Here is where I get to talk about all of the ideas I’ve thought were brilliant, but have no way to implement them.

Today – the fast food car wash.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could have a car wash in the McDonald’s drive thru?  You could place your order then either get a car wash and pick up your food at the end, or if you don’t want a car wash just go through the other lane and pick up your food.

I first had this idea about 20 years ago.  I’ve carried it for that long.  Whew – feels good to get it out there.

What do you think?

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I feel pretty…

Today I hope you feel beautiful.  I hope you like your face.  I hope you are happy with the way you’ve treated others.  I hope that someone was nice to you today…and if they weren’t, I hope that they get a good dose of karma.  I hope somebody tells you that you’re sweet or nice or kind or thoughtful or beautiful.  I hope you feel smart today because you knew something that nobody else knew.  I hope you got final Jeopardy right, but if you didn’t than neither did the contestants – like it was impossibly hard and Alex Trebek didn’t act smug about everyone not knowing the answer.  I hope you laughed today – hard – so hard you cussed.  I hope you saw something today that made you question something you take for granted, but then you realized that you are so amazingly thankful for what you have.  I hope someone thanked you today, especially for something that you didn’t even think was really worthy of gratitude.  I hope that if you are grieving, you are less sad today than you were yesterday.  I hope you sang a song very loudly today – embarrassingly loudly.  I hope someone thought of you today.

If at least one of those things applies to you, I feel like my work here is done.


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New Year…

I have always loved New Years.  Not for the parties or music or yelling.  Ever since I was a small child I’ve loved the count down that leads you to that one magical moment.  4-3-2-1 HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!  Then you’re in the second that is the next year.  For one tiny fraction of time, you can allow yourself to be totally caught up in the hope and optimism of the unknown.  So much possibility and a whole year to fulfill it.  No other moment in the entire year has so much potential.  I love it.

This year I looked at my friends’ and family’s Facebook pages.  Over and over I’ve seen a recurring theme.  “Let’s hope 2015 is better than 2014”  – “2014 was a challenge, looking forward to 2015.”  Last night as we were winding down the last minutes of the year, I received a message from someone very dear to me (my daughter’s best friend, whom we have declared our 2nd daughter) that her mother had passed away on the 28th.  I went into the New Year heartbroken.  I watched people in Times Square kiss and celebrate and enjoy that moment – that special moment; as I thought that my sweet 18 year-old loved one had been robbed of that moment this year.  She’s walking into a 2015 without a mom – a woman who knew EVERYTHING, but not in a bad way, a woman who was bigger than life and equally generous. She’s looking at a whole year of a emptiness.

So this year, I’m offering her a new New Year.  Let’s celebrate Chinese New Year this year, baby girl.  I’ll count down with you and together we’ll take that second to imagine the possibilities.  We’ll take on the world together.  We’ll make resolutions to do things we have no intention of keeping.  We’ll toast mama one and know that we’ll step into the year of the sheep with a guardian angel looking over you.

For everyone else…I hope that 2015 is better than 2014, regardless of whether or not you’ve had a challenging year.  I hope that 2015 sees the fruition of millions of magical moments.  And I hope that as we countdown to 2016 I hear, “I hope this year is as great as last year was!”

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