Just in case...

In case you aren't sure how to celebrate Halloween, here are a few ideas. This video is pretty short (only about a minute long) so check it out.

Happy Halloween!!!




What's In Your Fridge?

Pretty sad, yeah?


  • Bottom level reserved for beer ~ Bud Light, Fat Tire, Amber Bock, Schlafly and maybe some other stuff that's been left from over the summer.
  • Five Diet 7-Ups.
  • About half a dozen of eggs - but I don't know if they are safe to eat. They've been in there for a while.
  • The yellow bowl on the top shelf contains cereal that I poured for myself before I realized the milk was bad. I didn't want to throw away the cereal, so the bowl has been sitting there for a couple weeks now, waiting for me to buy more milk.
  • One and a half Red Bulls. (From the last time I made "Shreks" at my place. Recipe: Equal parts Red Bull and UV Blue Vodka.)
  • A lonely Yoplait Yogurt.
  • Some butter.
  • Left over Penne Pasta with Chicken from McGurk's last night.

It is a wonder that I'm not starving to death.


Suicidal Squirrels

This morning a squirrel ran out in front of my car as I was on my way to work.

I clenched my eyes and waited to hear a thump or crunch but heard neither. I willed myself not to look in my review mirror, not wanting to know if the squirrel had gone to meet his maker.

I gave in and peeked timidly into the rearview. No squirrel! He had survived! I was not a squirrel murderer... today!


Last spring, I was driving down a road. It was two lanes both ways and separated by an island of grass and shrubberies between.

As I drove, I saw a squirrel begin to cross the other two lanes of traffic.

"Poor little squirrel," I thought. "I hope he doesn't get hit!"

The squirrel sprinted across the two lanes of traffic and safely made it to the grassy area in the middle of the road.

Then, the squirrel, as if he had not had enough excitement for the day, decided to sprint across my lanes of traffic. I slowed down, watching him, not wanting to have guilt and squirrel guts smooshed all over my car.

He made it across my lane of traffic just as a car on the right side of me sped past...

The squirrel made a u-turn to try to escape back to the safety of the landscaped island...

And ran directly under the right front tire of my car.

I looked in the rearview mirror that time and saw the smashed squirrel on the road.

I had done it... I had made roadkill.


I remember as a child, I was the oldest of two girls. My little brother was not born until I was nine years old, so my father used to try to get me involved in his interests since he didn't have a son.

My dad liked to go hunting.

He would take me down to Grandma and Grandpa's house, which sat on about sixty acres of woods, to go squirrel hunting. We would go down on a Friday night and wake up before the sun came up on Sunday morning.

Dad and I would walk through the woods, looking for little squirrels hopping from branch to branch, enjoying the brisk fall air. Dad carried his rifle and would expertly shoot the the squirrels.

Then he and I would tromp through the brush and leaves and look for the fallen creature. When we found him, I would pull out a plastic grocery bag. Dad would pick it up and put it in the bag. It was my job to carry the deceased until we were finished hunting and back at the house where Dad would skin the squirrels.

Dad might as well have brought a hound dog with him. At least the hound dog wouldn't have talked the whole time and scared the squirrels away.


One time, Grandma made squirrel stew. It looked like it still had hairs in the meat. I refused to eat it.


And while we're on the subject:

For Blogarita and Fantastagirl



Extended Family

My mother has eight brothers and sisters. Almost all of them live on the East Coast and while I was growing up, we would travel out to visit for three weeks or so every summer. My cousin, Amy, and I were inseparable during those visits and we are still close, however, neither of us has made the trek to visit the other in several years.

My dad has three siblings and I have fifteen cousins on that side of the family. One of my aunts lives in the area; the other two live in Denver and Ann Arbor. We get together for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter and sometimes Fourth of July.

Even though I have a large family in numbers, while I was growing up, our family was pretty isolated. We didn't really ever have neighbors over for barbecues during the summer, no friends came over to play cards and hang out on the weekends. I remember my best friend from school was always going over to this other family's house for all sorts of events. They even went on vacations together.

Our family was pretty quiet, I guess. My parents had a lot of marital problems, although they didn't end up getting divorced until after I had graduated from college. My dad was involved in city politics and knew a lot of people, but it was almost like our family didn't want to let too many people in close to see what really went on inside our home. My mom kept herself isolated and only confided her problems in long distance phone calls to her sister.

A few years ago, I was invited over to a friend of a friend's garage to play cards and drink some beer. There I met the beginning of what I consider my extended family. They themselves are an extended family: siblings, cousins, old friends from high school, and random connections that somehow tie this eclectic group together. Their children are growing up together like family. We see each other almost every week. We go on vacations together. There is a closeness between us that reminds me of what a family should be.

Today, I am going to the baptism of the newest addition to this family. How lucky am I to be invited to be a part of this beautiful baby girl's life? When I was growing up, this would have been an event for "real" family only... that is, if they were in town at the time.

I am grateful to have these wonderful people in my life. I hope that as we continue in our lives, we can continue to experience life with each other. Joys and successes, sorrows and frustrations. Because that's what family is for...

(But if anyone else moves to freakin' Foley, I'll be pissed right off!)


Sports Corner 3

(To the tune of The Fray's "Over My Head")

I always knew
I always knew the Cardinals would come through
That all the fans would be waiting on a queue
For tickets to the Series in the Lou
That’s how its gonna be
Suppan’s fastball and then a strike three
The homerun hammered over the wall by Yadi
Then Shea stadium goes silent and

Everyone thought they were in
Over their heads
Over their heads
Eight innings of tied game
Ninth’s not the same
It’s not the same

Let’s rearrange
The batting order and maybe make a pitching change
Tony puts in Wainwright for the last exchange
The Redbirds are finally on center stage
So let’s disregard
Predictions that the Mets will beat the Cards
Have faith in Eckstein and Belliard
Then the Mets are beaten in their own backyard

Everyone thought they were in
Over their heads
Over their heads
Eight innings of tied game
Ninth’s not the same
It’s not the same

And suddenly, the Mets are part of our past
The predictions just don’t seem to last
And we’re winning and it seems effortless
With a crack of the bat, the Cardinals will never look back
Head to Detroit and unpack
Never thought that we'd make it this far
Won't let it go we win four more

Everyone thought they were in
Over their heads
Over their heads
Eight innings of tied game
Ninth’s not the same
It’s not the same


Looking for the perfect Christmas gift?

Consider the classic gift of a
Wooden Sushi Slicing Playset!

Just think of the hours of fun that
your little one will have
slicing and dicing wooden fish!

And if you think that wooden sushi just isn't enough,
check out this added feature!

"Realistic Chopping Sound As You Cut Your Sushi Rolls!"

Set complete with chopsticks!


Has anybody seen a yellow
Sharpie Accent Liquid Highlighter?

Last seen in the coffee cup on my desk
Friday, October 13
at approximately 3:20 p.m.

I left for a conference on Saturday morning
and when I got back it was gone.


(Has anyone seen my Swingline stapler? I had a red Swingline stapler...)


Sports Corner 2**

So how 'bout those Cards?!?!

A couple of thoughts that I've had while watching the playoffs:

You know the jerk who has the expensive seats behind home plate and you can see him talking on his cell phone? All of a sudden the guy starts waving frantically because the person on the phone tells him, "Hey, I see you on TV!"

Don't be that guy!


Another guy you don't want to be is the idiot who still hasn't learned the lesson that it is NOT a wise decision to try to lean over the wall onto the field to grab a ball that is still in play. You may think that it is foul or that you are catching a home run, but come on! Remember the poor guy for the Cubs a few years back? Do you want that to be you? Last night a fan leaned over and scooped up a ball that was fair. It was an automatic double for the Mets, which it probably would have ended up being anyway, but for God's sake, grow a brain!


Every year the Cards are in the playoffs, there is a player from the other team that we all love to hate. Last year, it was Berkman of the Houston Astros. This year, it is Jose Valentin.

What's with the moustache? I mean, seriously. This guy looks like he belongs on Super Troopers or Me, Myself, and Irene. (Do you know why I pulled you over, meow?)


Watching sporting events has really improved my lip reading skills. I can recognize words like What the fuh... and Dangnabit.


Let's go Cards! One more game! Hopefully Carpenter can make it happen for us tonight up in Shea Stadium.

**Back by special request by Dave!!


Grocery Shopping List

I've decided to integrate more food items with rhyming names into my diet. The first two items:

Broccoli Wokly...

Let me know if you have any suggestions of other food stuffs with rhyming names that I shoud try.


Speaking of wine...

From the recent visit to the beautiful scenery of Stone Hill Winery in Hermann, Missouri...

...a perfect picture for a weekend caption contest:

Winner to receive a slightly used bottle of Stone Hill Pink Catawba! Bonus for the first person to correctly identify both individuals.


Would you like some cheese with that whine?

Looks innocent, right?

Just a can of regular Kraft Parmesan Cheese. Perfect for a dinner of ravioli, salad, and garlic bread, which is what I prepared on Tuesday night.

As I enjoyed my dinner, I noticed some writing on the back of the can.

"Try Some Italian!" it declared.

It listed several phrases and their Italian translations with pronunciations such as "Hello" (Ciao!) and "Enjoy your meal" (Buon Appetito!).

Then I noticed something a bit odd.

"Thank you very much, Mom!" (Mille grazie, Mamma!)

Thank you very much, Mom???

What exactly is the implication here? That if children are eating food that requires Kraft Parmesan Cheese, it should be assumed that their mothers are the ones who prepared it? That it is the woman's responsibility to be barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen?


And it isn't even only the feminist part of me that gets a little pissed off about this. Men should be upset, too. What kind of credit are they giving the fathers who share responsibilities with their wives? Or the single fathers who fix dinner for their children on a daily basis?

Anyway, I didn't worry about the whole issue too much. It didn't keep me from eating my dinner and I didn't throw away the can in protest. But, I figured, what the hell - it was at least worth a mediocre blog entry!


Animation Overload

Marketing for pharmaceutical companies has changed in recent years. The most recent (and disturbing) trend that I've noticed is the integration of animation into these ads.

I mean, seriously.

For example:
The Nasonex Bee:
Promotes an allergy medication.

Connection to product: Bees spread pollen from flowers. Many people are allergic to pollen. People who are allergic to pollen might need Nasonex.

Overall effectiveness: Three out of five sneezes. But can somebody please explain to me why the bee speaks with a Mexican accent?

The Mucinex Mucus:
Promotes a decongestant.

Connection to product: People with a cold need a decongestant to clear the mucus from their sinuses in order to be able to breathe.

Overall effectiveness: Two out of five sneezes. If mucus could talk, is this really what it would look like? And why does Mr. Mucus have a bride? Yuck...

The Lamisil... Gremlin???
Promotes an anti-fungal treatment for toenails.

Connection to product: Toenail fungus is gross. This little creature is gross.

Overall effectiveness: Zero out of five sneezes. Come on! If their is some little gross thing crawling underneath my toenail, I'm getting the thing amputated. Screw Lamisil!

EDIT: Since posting this approximately five minutes ago, I have already been approached by several pharmaceutical companies requesting my assistance in developing some new ad campaigns. They would like suggestions about what meds need animated mascots and what those mascots should be. Any ideas?



We cross bridges everyday.

Sometimes we cross them knowingly, eager to reach the other side.
Leaving old (ideas-thoughts-failures-doubts) behind
Hoping a new foundation on which to build will be found just beyond its bounds.

The waters below can look turgid and harsh,
Churning and reminding us of of the scaffold's potential inefficiency.

Maybe it is better to stay... Is the risk worth the reward?

(Without bridges) We'd be trapped.
(Without bridges) We'd be stagnant.
(Without bridges) We'd be islands.

Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath and go
Trust that (hopes-ambitions-goals-life) are waiting patiently just across the waters.

* Photo and poem by Violet, 2006.


Photo Friday***

***AKA - Violet doesn't have anything to say, so here are some pictures that she had on her PDA and thought she would use for a cheap blog entry...

What is wrong with this picture?

Well, in addition to just being a little bit scary in general, the octopus has (count 'em) NINE TENTACLES...

Why exactly is this a chair in a Mexican restaurant? Looks like it should be in some sort of seafood restaurant where you aren't quite sure if the "fresh catch of the day" hasn't been sitting there for a week...


Regis going "Bye-Bye"

He was just as excited about the trip to Warsaw, Missouri as anyone!


Future Plumber of America

Give that boy a broom, rake, or plunger and he will be happy for hours!


Baby Ella and Dave...

Captions anyone?


Hope everyone has an awesome weekend! Don't do anything I wouldn't do!


Sports Corner

So, today marks the official beginning of the new NHL season. And, for the first time in years, I'm actually looking forward to the season. I, along with many other St. Louis sports fans, are hoping that the 2006-2007 St. Louis Blues Season will mark the beginning of a new era in St. Louis hockey.

New owners mean refreshed interest. A willingness to spend money on players that will help to build a successful team. What a novel idea!

In addition to new ownership and new players, the home of the Blues also has a new name. Instead of the Savvis Center, it is now the Scott Trade Center... That is going to take a little getting used to.


The Cardinals won their first playoff game in San Diego yesterday.

Ya gotta love Pujols and that look on his face when he knows he's clocked a ball into next week. And Carpenter is truly amazing to watch. But, the highlight for me yesterday was the catch that Belliard made of that line drive into the right field and the way he fired that ball to first base to make the Padres strand three runners on base.

I hope that the Cardinals do well in this series... Last year was such a disappointment. (F#%* Houston and their g$#^!& buzzing bees!) Hopefully, with Edmonds and Eckstein back, the Cards will be able to hold their own. But, as everyone in St. Louis pretty much knows, it is going to come down to pitching.

I've always been a Cardinals fan, (can you be a true St. Louisan and NOT be a Cardinals fan?) but, over the past two years I have watched a lot more baseball and learned a lot about the game. I am really able to have a true appreciation for the skill level of the players. I've even learned how to tell the difference between the different types of pitches and what some of the strategy is between choosing one over the other. And, I learned the difference between a designated hitter and a pinch hitter.

On a side note, I think it sucks that the games in this series are all played at 3 o'clock (central time) just because St. Louis and San Diego aren't big markets like New York and L.A. But, as everybody in professional sports knows, it always comes down to the almight dollar.


How in the world do the St. Louis Rams have a record of 3-1?

Not by any skill, except perhaps the skill of Jeff Wilkins...

Want to know the easiest way to become known as the best kicker in the NFL? Join a team that can't score once they are in the red zone.

I'm not big fan of Marc Bulger. Never have been, doubt that I ever will be.

I was hoping that once we got rid of Mike Martz that the Rams organization would get over this shtick of always trying to pass the ball and being unsucessful in the process. But, apparently, we're still stuck there.


But, that's just me. We'll take the 3-1 record, no matter how sloppy it was to earn!


Barge In for a "Bargin"

Driving to work today, I noticed this sign:

I started second-guessing myself... Is it spelled B-A-R-G-A-I-N? My instinct told me that it was, but I spell-checked before posting, just to make sure!

Was this an accident? Has anybody pointed it out to the store management? Is there some inside joke that I'm just not getting about Wednesday "Bargin" Days at the Wonder Hostess Bakery Thrift Shop?

I'm thinking that they were a bit too "thrifty" when they ordered the sign. Or at least when they hired the person who ordered it.

Since I was in the mood for stopping and taking pictures this morning on the way to work, I also found this one. Thought I'd post it, just for fun.



As everyone has already heard, Pluto has been downgraded to a "dwarf planet," which means that there are now only eight planets in our solar system.

No more:
Molly's Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Noodle Pie.

I guess she's just going to have to serve noodles, which isn't nearly as memorable or humorous as 'noodle pie.'

I think the effects of this change from nine to eight planets are only beginning to be seen. With only eight planets circling our sun, the entire balance of the universe as we know it will begin to change.

For example:

Cats now only have eight lives instead of nine.

Want to play half of a round of golf? There are only eight holes now.

Cloud Nine is no longer an option. The best you can get is Cloud Eight.

The German language will actually change. The word for "no" is now prounouced "eiht."

They are completely removing the position of shortstop from baseball.

NIN is getting a manicure of sorts.

The shoe company, Nine West, is doing an entire makeover. Instead, they will be known as Eight East.

A stitch in time is only going to save eight.

Be on the lookout for more downgrades. All because Pluto is being knocked down to a dwarf planet.