Saturday, December 31, 2011



Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and old lang syne ?

For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.
And surely you’ll buy your pintcup !
and surely I’ll buy mine !
And we'll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

We two have run about theslopes,
and picked the daisies fine ;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,

since auld lang syne.

We two have paddled in thestream,

from morning sun till dine ;

But seas between us broad have roared

since auld lang syne.

And there’s a hand my trustyfriend !
And give us a hand o’ thine !
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for auld lang syne.




Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Today: Four Birds A Calling

While most folks think the Twelve Days of Christmas are the days leading up to Christmas, they are mistaken.  The twelve days start on Christmas Day and ends on the eve of Epiphany, January 5.  Plus the history of the song is rather interesting.

I rather enjoyed this little spin on the twelve days...maybe more so because my time off work has afforded me the pleasure of late night TV watching.  

I was kind of thinking maybe they should have had Danny Bonaduce as the Partridge in the pear tree.  I think the dude could have a used a bit of work these days.  Nothing against Shirley Partridge, I mean Jones.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Night Time Conversation With The King

King Ralph: I'm gonna need clean laundry tomorrow

Me: like underwear

KR: yes

Me: you might have to wear your Superman underwear you got for Christmas

KR: I don't know where I am suppose to wear those

Me: you just wear them...anywhere

KR: can you imagine if something happened to me and I was found in those underwear

KR: being found in super hero underwear is something for reality TV

inserting laugh track

I am seriously considering not doing laundry just to see if King Ralph goes for the super hero panties as his pair of "desperates."  We all have'm, that pair of underwear you are forced to succumb to when the lazy part of you skips on the laundry.

Only time will tell...if he longs to be Superman.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Remembering Christmas 2011

I have taken this day to do nothing else than rest.  I am perfectly molded into the cushion of the couch, while King Ralph is perfectly molded into the leather recliner--we have no plans to be motivated.  Laziness has its place today and it feels oh-so-good!

The last several days have been great.  King Ralph's nephew arrived at our house on the 23rd from New Jersey.  He is an Air Force officer (pilot) stationed at McGuire AFB --it has been ten years since he has celebrated the holidays with the family.  The girls miss their cousins terribly.  It warmed my heart to see the three girls making Charley laugh and the four of them all laughing together.  On Christmas Eve we celebrated the birth of Christ at church...our wise men have been moving around the house all month and finally made there way to the manger scene.

 Then we came home were King Ralph's sister and her family joined us for a feast of appetizers, spiked nog and a night of games.  King Ralph in usual Scattergories fashion tried to pass off an "s" word (Sucrets) as a "c" word.  Fail!  We laughed and loved, escalating our Christmas spirit.  Then we all headed to bed to slumber waiting for Santa Claus to do his magic.  And he did.  Under the tree he placed three gifts for each of the girls. At our house we practice: Jesus got three gifts upon his birth so that is what the girls get--three gifts.  Good enough for Jesus. Good enough for the girls. Stockings were stuffed to the brim as well.  Then the girls tip-toed to the living room and placed gifts for each other, King Ralph and I under the tree.  

We spent Christmas Day celebrating at King Ralph's cousin's house. Where after ten years of Christmas cousin pictures with Charley's name written on a piece of paper--the real thing was added. First cousins together like they should be.
      where they got silly
 and sillier

Minus one great grand-kid we snapped pictures to celebrate their togetherness

Then for all the 21 and over crowd we toasted the late and great Gee-Gee with root beer float shots.  Okay so her idea of a root beer float (which she served up to the great-grand kids every time they visited her house) was vanilla ice cream and Vess root beer, while ours was vanilla vodka and root beer...we raised our glasses, just like we did at her memorial dinner, "to Gee-Gee" and slung the shot back.

What is Christmas without playing games?  Cards it was!

Penny a chip.
 My name is D and I am a chip hog.

At ten o'clock King Ralph and the girls drug my Maple Butter Kiss


  • Ice
  • 1 1/2 oz. vodka
  • 1/2 oz. DeKuyper Buttershots liqueur or butterscotch schnapps
  • 1/4 oz. real maple syrup
  • 1 oz. half-and-half
  • Fresh-ground nutmeg


Pour liquid ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass and top with fresh-ground nutmeg.

and Chocolate Vanilla martini tail to the car....

No doubt we had a very merry day! I hope you did too.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Very Merry 2011 Charley Is Home Christmas

It has been ten years since my Air Force captain nephew has been able to spend Christmas with us. We are busy being merry, eating, drinking, laughing, loving and celebrating everything Christmas with New Jersey's most eligible bachelor. Pardon the brief intermission, I'll be back soon after finish celebrating the birth of Christ and hanging with family. As dysfunctional as we may, might be...we laugh and love much!

So I leave you with a song in honor of my nephew's homecoming:


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Where are you Christmas, Why Can't I Find You

There were certain things that I banked on to really bolster my Christmas spirit: children asking me for weeks on end if I believed in Santa (which, for the record, I do!), working on the adopt-a-family program ( seeing the gratitude and humbleness in the faces of the receivers filled the heart with the meaning of advent), holiday art work lining hallways (there is just something about a reindeer built of construction paper cut outs with antlers made of tiny paint hand prints of a Kindergarten child), holiday classroom parties and the reindeer relay.  This year my spirit register is a little low to say the least.  I don't know if it would be fair to blame it on middle school attitudes that visit the chairs next to my desk--it just might be one of those years, a phase.

I had to look around work in which I managed to find a few things, although different from before, that were there offering up the spirit that comes with my "new world."...

It seems my boss got a Christmas outfit promotion since last year. I think he might have liked the Santa suit as much as he liked the elf.  He wore the Santa pants all day long.  I uncovered this costume in the office closest during the transition.  Like me it too got to stay in the building.  A little, a lot, of Febreeze later and it was wear ready.
(I believe this photo should be titled "you aren't Santa, you're a fake, you smell like beef and cheese")

This is where I got a small injection of Christmas spirit.  It came on the last day before holiday break.  The kids of the performing art classes show casing there holiday concert pieces--orchestra, choir, show choir and band.  

Today I have to reach down inside in me to pull my spirit up and get down to business. Heck, I still have a few gifts to get and some grocery shopping to do.  Oh and one more batch of cookies to crank out.

Then I can rest, on this eve of Christmas Eve.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Middle Sister

On this day nineteen years ago you filled our hearts with love and made us smile.

You have kept on making us smile all through the years and our hearts are continually filled with love. 

Happy Birthday "Middle Sister!" 

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas Shopping With the Spousal Unit

After we made a purchase at Nordstrom in the shoe department I stood there and gazed around. This is the conversation that I had with King Ralph...

Me: I swear when I die I want heaven to be the Nordstrom's shoe department

KR: This is hell.

ME:  The shoes are delicious! It is heavenly here.

KR: Really?

Me: Yes, I'm serious.

KR: Well if I woke up and the shoe department was heaven then I would be in hell.

This my friends is why I usually go to the mall without my better half, and why he goes to Lowe's and Home Depot without me.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Why Do I Have to Title This?

You know the worst time to blog is when you have been sipping at the white wine bottle...which may be exactly why I shouldn't be blogging...cause gosh darn I just don't blog as I use too, for many reasons, maybe because the things that are worth the laughs I can't really share publicly and the things I can....

Tonight was a night that I came home from work and just needed to see what was hiding downstairs in the neglected wine fridge.  Ooooo some fabulous Two Vines Vineyard 10 white wine was chilling and calling out my name.  "Joooooo-dee" it was calling. And I answered. No arm twisting needed!

As I sipped away, and as I sip away now I get a text on my phone from an unknown number

Mystery Text-or: Hows yur day going

Me: who is this

MT: Who is this?

Me: You text me to ask how my day was going

MT: Is this Tom

Me: Tom who? This is Jodi

MT: Im sorry I hve the wrong number

Me: No problem...and by the way I had a shitty day.

MT: Im so sorry my day isnt going so great either

MT: How long hve u had this numbr

Me: 10 yrs

Then the fun ended. Or my opportunity to unload on a complete stranger.

This my friends is maybe the reason I haven't been blogging much.

Friday, November 25, 2011

What made you laugh yesterday?  You know something did because no one can be with their family all day and not have a good laugh.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Many things in our humble abode has taken change--from a new job to college experience; we have much to be grateful for.  While my pre-Thanksgiving festivities have changed--no more watching elementary children dressed in their art crafted Pilgrim hats and Indian feather head dresses, feasting on apple slices and popcorn in a recreation of the first Thanksgiving meal ...instead my pre-Thanksgiving festivities are focused on middle school mayhem.  And that my friends, leads me to be ever-so-grateful for the monkey business my girls sometimes create or did create all those years ago, plus makes getting together with my BWFs full of more laughs and good conversation.   

While I could create my typical and proverbial list of thanks I will just say and two on the list never change, remaining steadfast in this order:

1. God
2. Family

You see my cornucopia runneth over, we are a blessed family that loves.  So I see no need to list because in the end I am grateful for everything that touches my life in a positive way.  

To celebrate our abundance of thanks my twenty guest and I will be toasting the day with this cocktail:

Pumpkin Pie Martini

ice cubes
2 ounces (1/4 cup) vanilla vodka
2 ounces (1/4 cup) creme de cacao
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
whipped cream, for garnish 

Fill shaker half way with ice.  Add vanilla vodka, creme de cacao and pumpkin pie spice and shake.

Dip rims of two martini glasses in whipped cream. Strain the cocktail into glasses.  

I will part here, do a few sit up and prepare to take in the estimated 3500-4500 calories this day's grand feast offers.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

My Post-it Note

I wrote a Post-it Note to myself today.

I don't know why I have been at a writing halt...maybe I don't think my life is so interesting after all. Maybe it is the transition I made this year with my career; learning, adjusting, accepting?  Maybe it is the transition of our abode down by one?  Whatever is the cause I have made that Post-it Note to myself as a reminder to dig inside myself to start to chronicle life once again.    

Thursday, October 20, 2011

This plan was foiled. Literally!

One of the great things about my boss is that he doesn't mind, uhm, what we office gals consider 40th birthday decorations. And, we don't mind taking three hours after work to decorate.

Of course I was the master mind behind this masterpiece--with the help of two other serious accomplices and four other hands who dropped by to assist for a bit...and please don't refer to it as a mess, it is a masterpiece!

And so I present to you the assistant principal's office:

The next day, 650am, he opens his door, "OMG who did this?" "this is pretty cool!" 

And he was all smiles. See.

It days like this that make me love my job even more!

Oh, his wife thought it was hilarious and so did his mom and dad.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering, Reflecting on 9-11

He was just two-years old. The little boy darted between the flag poles. In his naive state of being, unaware of the impact that the memorial was playing on the hearts of the Americans who stood somberly admiring the awesome sight. He was oblivious to the venerability that we Americans all now feel since that fateful morning on the eleventh of September, 2001. I watched him, admiring his innocence, wishing the world could be as it was for my daughters when they were two-years old. A country that didn't feel on pins and needles. A country full of prosper and wealth.

Oh how times have changed.

Where were you when you heard? What were you doing? A familiar question our generation poses as what was our parents JKF moment. King Ralph and I were on a cruise celebrating our fifteenth wedding anniversary. We woke in our pitch dark inside cabin, reached for the TV controller to simulate some light, only to see what must have been a scene from a action flick...then it clicked as Matt Lauer and Katie Couric began commentating. This was all for real. Our country had been attacked for absolutely no reason. Then as we sat in disbelief the second plane hit the second tower. For three days we sailed around the tip of Cuba, as we were not allowed to dock at port. No one complained. Even when the cruise line gave us all an hour of free pool side cocktails, we knew we were better off in the middle of a vast pool of water than on any land. The evening of the eleventh they held a vigil. Some of the ship's guests teetered on edge wondering if their loved one was alive, injured or safe. A feeling of total helplessness. King Ralph and I still recall an older gentleman getting up on stage singing the national anthem. He sang like tomatoes and bread slices should be tossing him off stage. But it is funny how in a moment like that, that your patriotism takes hold and you feel as though Pavarotti is paying tribute to our great country. As we looked around, tears rolled from eyes, followed by a standing ovation. Symbolic that not even a bad rendition of our country anthem could bring us to criticize. Instead we all felt as one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.

Today, ten years later, we stood on a hill in the middle of our "central park", Forest Park, that is known for it's winter sledding fun.  But on this day it engulfed flags symbolizing the memory of every person whose life was taken to soon.  I stood there reading the flag poles marked with a photo and brief bio feeling my tears brew.  Asking "why?" 


A question we will never really have a true defined answer to. 

When I rest my head on my pillow tonight I'll have the same pride I have always had: proud to be an American!        

Monday, September 05, 2011

"College has changed me"

I heard her say it. She said it more than once: "college has changed me".  She was referencing her ability to keep her room clean...

I am guessing it was statement directed only to her dorm impress a room mate?  Cause by the looks of her bedroom at home she fell back into her old habits awful quickly.

So good that she is able to be herself in the company of those who love her--bad messy habit and all--for the weekend.

She's back at MSU and I am missing her again, already.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy 37th Birthday Filipo Head

Way back in 1973 a group of teenage boys thought it would be fun to get stoned.  They thought it funnier to make an 8mm movie of themselves getting stoned.  Why I do not know?! Stupidity? Then years later post it on YouTube.

Why do I tell you this?

I tell you this because this is how Filipo Head came to be.

Filipo was kicked around, used as a ball for wiffle ball...he was generally abused by a future rock star and a popular local radio personality/teenage stoners of the 70's.

Filipo is the coolest Styrofoam head ever to live.  He hangs with famous people, like Tim Reynolds of The Dave Matthews Band. Filipo takes stage with Tim Reynolds's band TR3. Filipo is so cool he has his own Facebook page.

Since the hurricane was hitting the East Coast, Filipo decided he should celebrate his birthday in the Midwest (where the weather was more pleasant and safe).

For his birthday he floated on a raft in the pool 

Ejoyed an adult beverage while attempting to tan a bit...without much success.

He took a ride on the Harley

And enjoyed some cookie cake. 

You know for a Styrofoam head Filipo had a pretty damn good day...and no one abused him. Which for Filipo is an awfully good day!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Top Ten Reasons We Will Miss M


10.Her bedroom will be clean
9.  Her bathroom will be clean
8. No more guinea pig sized hair ball in her shower to fight off
7. The dishwasher chore is on a two person rotation
6. We can drive her car when ever we want
5. We won't trip over her shoe-S all over the house
4. My hairspray is less likely to disappear from my bathroom
3. One less kid to be my grocery bitch
2. No more witty come backs to King Ralph's nonsensical talks
1. I won't be able to squeeze her cheeks and give her 10 kisses at a time each night

We are super excited for you M, to have this opportunity to grow and learn. Remember, make yourself proud before you make us proud. Go Bears! XOXO

(Best college move in day sighting: man brought kid to college packed in a convertible Corvette. Unpacked so fast there was no time to snap that priceless picture to share.)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Where In The World Is Keeper?

Where is Keeper these days?

A. Saving her daughters from wrangling alligators

B. Saving A and M from wrastling the alligator

C. Off on a wild alligator ride

Truth is the alligator seems almost tame to the long hours that my co-workers and I have been pulling to get our new digs up and running.

School starts tomorrow for D and I. She, a junior and I...well it's like I am a freshman all over again. I'm excited!

So excuse me if I take a few blog breaks, I be off getting my feet wet, so to speak.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Big Fat Gypsy Vacation Takes a Beach Break

I returned from this summer's vacation feeling a bit out of shape. There is nothing I love more than getting my exercise on during a three week vacation. But like I said already, we had a week to work with, and made the best of it.

So after doing a little caving we headed to the beach. We had camped here 14 years ago, and found it had grown and improved greatly. It is a pricey place to camp. For a week of no interruption/obligation family time we didn't fret. It was worth it!
We played some Frisbee

 Wednesday morning we experienced a horribly, scary thunderstorm.  On Tuesday evening as we walked along the beach, watching little boys crabbing with their dads...watching the lightening crack down at a distance over the Gulf was an awesome sight.  Feeling the lightening crack over the camper, turning the bunk ends a glow of red and orange--CREEPY! SPOOKY! HEART STOPPING!  But By Thursday the sun was out in all day force, not small doses that you had to grab quicker than a sandwich from a gas station.

Then we had some good old fashion beach fun. We people watched. Made careful note:just because they make it in your size does not mean you should wear it. The girls got silly.
  We did a little bit of boogie boarding
We sipped a couple of bucket drinks (cause when your daughter is 21 you can do that)
We read.
D took a stab at some crabbing of her own...the crab would have none of that.
Relaxing can be dangerous if you're the only man in the family

He longs to be the Alpha male, but he is just "our Beta."

The gypsy vacation continued....