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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Signs - Good Advice

This is what's kept my husband alive all these years.



All you men out there, take heed!

For more interesting signs, visit Lesley here.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Woman I'm Not

Yesterday while waiting for my appointment at the chiropractor's office, I happened to glance over at the woman sitting next to me. She was an attractive black woman and she wore black jeans, a black top,  and a pretty, solid-colored turquoise scarf tied around her neck that new modern way (you know what I'm talking about?) I looked down at her feet and noticed that she had flip-flops on and her toe nails were painted turquoise.

I just blurted out, "Wow. Nice color on your toes! They match your scarf! Did you plan that?"

"Yes," she replied.

"Really?" I said, not  expecting that answer.

She continued, "I get my nails done once a week and plan my wardrobe around it."

I looked at her more closely.

Her earrings were turquoise.

The tips of her fingernails were turquoise.

"Do you mean to tell me that you wear something turquoise ALL week?" I asked her incredulously.

"Yes."

"Wow, I'm impressed!"

And I was. First off, this woman exuded coolness. I mean, if I happened to have a hot flash sitting next to her, it would have dissipated in an instant.

Seriously.

Secondly, to plan ahead that much so you know what you are wearing a week in advance?

That's impressive.

I REALLY wanted to take a picture of her feet and her hands; hell ALL of her, but I felt she would of thought I was nucking futs.

I mean, here I am, a middle-aged woman, who walks in, well, shuffles in because my hip and back hurt me. I'm wearing gym shoes and anklets, no make up, and I probably smell like a rusty nail even though I just showered but the water in the campground sucks because it's well water.

Am I raising my freaky flag or what?

I'm surprised the woman didn't change seats when I sat down next to her.

Oh, wait, there wasn't anymore open seats.

That explains it.

I DID hear her give a sigh of relief when the doctor called her in.

Just another day in the life of little ole me.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Up, Up and Away


First off, I want to thank everyone for the compliments on my new header. That bike is in my sister, Linda's, front yard. She picked up the bike at a garage sale, spray-painted it that neon green color, found baskets for it, then planted the flowers in it. Now you know WHY I call her Linda Martha Stewart.

 No Effects of Hurricane Irene by me over the weekend!


There is a "soaring club" near our campground. We pass it quite frequently. I kept telling Jim that one of these days I was going to stop there and take pictures.

Well this past Saturday we had the opportunity to do so.

Now for some reason, whenever I have a camera in my hand, I feel very bold and confident. It's almost like wearing a Superman Wonder Woman cape and having magical powers.



Wait. She wore a metal bra, right? Hmm....I wear an underwire bra, maybe THAT gives me confidence......oh I digress!

My point is, although  I can talk to most anyone,  I am shy in some circumstances. But put a camera in my hand and I act like it's a badge or a free pass.

Back to my story. So Jim and I walked onto the long rectangular field. The building was on our left. Jim hung way back. But not me.

I am woman, hear me roar.


There was a group of people huddled to the side. Some were sitting at a table with an umbrella over them that gave them some relief from the heat of the sun. I walked up to a man who looked like he was in charge; plus he was wearing a bright orange vest AND he carried a walkie/talkie.

"Do you mind if I take some pictures?" I asked him.

"Take all the pictures you want!" He replied quite friendly.

I waved Jim closer to me so he could get a better look at the planes.


This glider plane is waiting to be towed up into the air. (ENLARGE ALL PHOTOS TO SEE BETTER.)



We watched as a small plane landed on the field and came close to the glider plane. This man is carrying the tow rope over to the glider. Notice the rope is attached to the plane.



Now he hooks up the tow rope to the glider.



Ready for take off! Orange man holds the wing up and walks along until the plane goes faster.



And we have lift off!




 It just a minute or so, both planes were soaring in the clouds!



 Pretty soon it was time for the next glider to come on the field.


I boldly ran over and talked to the pilot, and asked if I could take his picture. He said "yes".


I explained that I didn't work for a newspaper or anything, and that the picture was for my blog. His friend say, "Hey, you stand next to him (Alex the pilot) and I'll take a picture of the two of you."

I said, "No, no, I don't want MY picture taken!"

He said, "Do you want to go up in an airplane?"

"No, no that's okay!"

"Sure, why not? He's a pilot! We have two-seaters over there!" He said, pointing to a larger plane.

He seemed to be doing all the talking for his friend.

I again declined and then I had to get off the field because the airplane was coming in for a landing.


Here are three gliders lined up waiting their turn. Geez, this is almost like the planes lined up at Chicago O'hare Airport!

Some of the gliders are kept in these funny looking boxes.



The gliders are stored in pieces. Here's one that was just being put together. I wish we could have stayed to see the wings put on. The fuselage just out of the box.

Inside the storage box.


Here is a quick clip that shows you how these planes are put together.



The second video is a short video from the Soaring Club. It's worth watching.




Now I just know, you are all thinking, "WHY DIDN'T YOU GO FOR A RIDE ON THAT PLANE?"

I obviously took off my WONDER WOMAN BRA because all my boldness left and I chickened out. Besides, when I looked this place up on the internet, I found out that there was a WEIGHT LIMIT to fly in the plane.

Would they have asked me how much I weighed? And would they have believed me?

Or worse still, would I have had to step on a scale? YIKES!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Lovely Lake Geneva


A few weeks ago Jim and I drove up to the quaint village of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, population less than 8,000. Lake Geneva is located close to the Illinois  border and on the beautiful Geneva Lake. The center of the town is full of shops and restaurants and is popular with tourists.




We went to this town to visit our friend, Carol, who we actually met in Mesa, AZ. She spends her winters in the same resort that we do.We became good friends and have shared many a good times together!

(l to r) me, Jim, Carol
We arrived at Carol's house right around the lunch hour. Carol wanted us to eat lunch at Popeye's.

Well, in my HEAD I'm thinking, Say what? Popeye's Chicken?



Isn't there a better place to eat in the area?

But my MOUTH says, "Sure, that would be fine!"

But Carol was talking about a DIFFERENT Popeye's....an eclectic restaurant located right on the shores of Lake Geneva.

As soon as we walked into the place, I knew I'd like it. We were lucky enough to snag a table right by the window, so we had a view of the lake.

I looked around the room and many things caught my eye. Like the fact that the bar was shaped like a boat.

I bet many a drunk has felt up the knockers of that fair maiden on the front of that ship!

Speaking of knockers........I LOVED this mermaid hanging from the ceiling!


Let's get a closer look, shall we?


Gee, I would look EXACTLY like that if I were to put a couple of clam shells on my ta-ta's. Except that I don't have long hair. And I have a big belly, too. But other than that, yeah, we would be IDENTICAL.

Anyclam, after a delicious lunch we walked around a little bit.

Your carriage awaits m'lady!


Another way to see the town is to rent one of these converted motorcycles. Aren't they darling?


This beautiful fountain is right across from the restaurant.


The sign for the fountain: (Click to enlarge)


Back of fountain


We took a wonderful cruise on this paddleboat called, "The Lady of the Lake".


View onboard the ship.

It was a beautiful day, AND perfect weather to take a one-hour tour (I KNOW you are all singing 3-hour tour of Gilligan's Island at this point, but try to pay attention, will ya?)  It was a perfect opportunity to show the "have-nots" what the "haves" have.

Who knew there were millionaires living right on the shores of Lake Geneva? Now I know, and you will, too, once you take a gander at some of these mansions right along the lake. You've GOT to enlarge the photos to REALLY see what you are missing!





I believe this mansion (below) is on the Wrigley property. You know, as in "Wrigley Field" where the Chicago Cubs play ball, or "Wrigley Gum". Yeah, those people. This is one of several buildings on their land. Our tour guide told us that lake front property is currently selling for approximately $20,000 A FOOT. The Wrigley's own A MILE of lakefront property. So, there's 5,280 FEET in a MILE. (YES, I HAD to look that up!) 5,280 x $20,000 = a shitload of money or $105,600,000.   I'm sure that doesn't account for how far BACK the property goes, and of course, the BUILDINGS on the land, so let's just say that they have a bazillion dollars and leave it at that, m'kay?



Now THESE people decided to make their guest house look like a boat! How cool is that?



Finally, this was the LARGEST house ever built in Lake Geneva. The Stone Manor, built in 1901, by Otto Young. It has several floors in it! It is now split up into various luxurious condominiums.


I found this video showing the inside of Stone Manor.



If you feel energetic, a pathway runs the whole way around the lake, a distance of about 20 miles.


This means you could get up close and personal to some of the mansions. And turn around and see their view of the lake.


Sweet!

Friday, August 26, 2011

I made my bed; now I have to lie on it

I am going to get intimate with you for a little while.

I am going to talk about my bed.

It sucks.

The mattress is pretty worn out.

(Go ahead. Insert your comments here, and snicker all you want.)

We do NOT have a box spring because, basically our mattress sits ON a box, a wooden built-in storage box.  The mattress is only about 4 inches thick, including the pillow top that is attached. It was comfortable the first couple of years, and when it got a little thin we added a memory foam that we cut down to fit.

But the foam isn't an exact fit,  which means that it slips down and then my pillow is on a slant and the blood rushes to my head.

Slipped Foam

Not good.

That's just the first problem.

Then next problem is finding sheets that fit.

We can't.

You see, our bed is an odd size. It's bigger than a queen, but smaller than a king. It's  a "quing", I guess. 

So, unless Miss Suzy Seamstress here makes them, which is not happening in MY LIFETIME, we have to buy king-sized sheets and resort to tricks.

Like this.

See these little circles? Jim sticks them strategically underneath the edges of the mattress.


Then he puts these thing-a-ma-jigs around them. His index finger is blocking a small circle where he will thread a rope through.


I think he has two pieces of rope because I've seen him pull them tight, like lacing up a shoe (thus pulling the sheet taut). I like to think he's doing a little magic under the mattress (and I wouldn't mind a little magic ABOVE the mattress, either!) Badda-bing badda boom!


The whole procedure causes Jim to sweat like a pig. Notice the sweat drops on the sheets in the above photo (white arrow!) Aah! Job done for another week! What a workout!


We had some nice sheets that were smooth and worn in just right. They had no pills on them, either. But our mattress has ripped out of its covering and has some sharp edges and ripped the heck out of the fitted sheet. So I went on the hunt for just a brown fitted sheet. I found one for $15. Not bad, I thought.

I washed it and Jim put it on the mattress. That night we crawled in bed and almost yelped out loud. That sheet was so rough we could have used it as a pumice rock! I kid you not!

But we still slept on it till I had a chance to go out and buy new sheets.

End of problem.

Wrong.

I picked up some sheets that were on sale and they were supposed to be made of microfiber. What exactly IS microfiber anyway? Well, I thought that was the same material I had on underwear and nightgowns and it is pretty soft. I thought, "great", so I picked up the sheets.

Dragged them to the laundromat, washed them, Jim did his little routine and that night I crawled in bed.

Within 5 minutes I was sweating like a pig. I was STICKING to the sheets! What the!!!

Where is Martha Freakin' Stewart when you need her?

You do NOT F*CK with a menopausal woman.

The next day I viciously stripped the bed.

"I CANNOT sleep on the sheets another night!" I raged to Jim.

It was back to the scratchy brown sheet.

In the meantime I contracted some kind of poison oak. It started spreading to both my legs. Then I broke out in a different kind of rash all over the rest of my body.

I thought I better put bleach on the sheets when I washed them.

I KNOW. They were BROWN sheets. But usually if you were to fill up the machine FIRST with the bleach in it, I didn't think there would be any kind of a problem.

Yeah, well, again, remember I use a laundromat. It has dispensers on TOP of the machine. I added the detergent and the bleach (in a separate area). It dumped it right onto the clothes.

The results? Does it look like a hidden message?


FINALLY I had a chance to go out and buy new sheets. I am very happy with them......they are thick, soft and would be perfect if I REALLY had a king sized bed!


We bought new pillows at the same time as the sheets. Within a few weeks my pillow was so misshapen! I give up!


We found a place in AZ that will cut a mattress down to size and that is one of the FIRST things we are going to do when we arrive there for the winter.

Come hell or high water.

Or dust storms.

Mamma needs her sleep!