Thursday, June 26, 2014

My Beach Summer Reading List

(Not me) LOL
1 – Discovery of Witches Trilogy
            Love these books.. last one is released on 7/15
2 – The Collector – Nora Roberts
            If you are on the beach a Nora Roberts book is always a great standby
3 – Unlucky 13 – James Patterson
            Another good old standby is a Women's Murder Club installment
4 – Lost Island (Gideon Crew) – Preston/Child  - Release 8/5
            The third installment of Gideon Crew. Love this character. Lots of action.
5 – 6th Extinction – James Rollins- Release 8/12
            Another action packed book with Grey Pierce and the yummy Painter Crowe
            6th installment of the Sigma Force series
6 – The Kracken Project – Douglas Preston
            One half of my fave author duo usually cranks out a solo once a year always
            Always good.
7 – Cop Town – Karin Slaughter
            A stand alone from her Grant County and Will Trent series…
this should be interesting
8 – The Cursed – Heather Graham
            I love her spooky stories. Nothing like a good paranormal mystery.
9 – Invisible – James Patterson
            He is cranking out these co-author books fast. But nevertheless they are always
            Good books with 3-4 page chapters so they are fast reads. Great for the beach
10 – Fall reading has several to look forward to! Price Lestat is back! And so is Agent
Pendergast and Alex Cross.

This is How I Feel Today

Just the thought of sending some people down a flight of steps today makes me smile.
Of course I would feel terrible... but thinking isn't doing... so I will think about it and smile.
That should be enough for now.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Sheldon Cooper vs. Mr. Bean

Whenever I venture to Downtown Raleigh it is always a memorable experience.
Today was no different. I had to go to the 12th floor of the county courthouse to probate my mothers estate. Trying to be legal and do the right thing, this was my second trip to the top floor of the nastiest building in the city. When you walk in you can tell it is very dated as far as structure, and it LOOKS dirty. The walls, floors, elevators, bathrooms, you name it … was grungy and dirty. I remember going there for my first ticket 30 years ago… it was nasty then. Anyway, I had to park about 2 blocks away which was better than the first time I went about a month ago. It wasn't so hot this morning so I was able to get to my top floor destination without breaking too much of a sweat.

My appointment was at 930 AM with a guy that could be Sheldon Cooper’s twin. I walk in the doors and immediately see his office is dark. WHAT THE HELL IS THAT ABOUT…. I have a damn appointment. So I sign in and the nice lady asks me if I can see someone else or do I want to come back to see Sheldon. First of all… I am not coming back to this hell hole. Secondly I had an appointment with Sheldon and he didn't call or email to let me know he was not going to be there so someone better see me – soon.
 About an hour later, I think she made me sit there hoping to cool my engines, Mr. Bean comes and fetches me to talk to him. Seriously … Mr. Bean. So I tell him why I am there… give him all my paperwork. He wants to question me about specifics but when I want to question him he says “I can’t tell you what to do, all I can tell you is your options”. So I ask him what should I do about this or that… to which he replies each time “I can’t tell you what to do, all I can tell you is your options”.

The third time he said that to me I had to stop… breathe… I could feel it welling up inside of me... the Pamela Maroon/Julia Sugarbaker rant that I was about to unleash on this poor fella was going to be unlike anything he has ever experienced on the 12th floor. I almost felt sorry for him…because it was coming… and then he did it… “I can’t tell you what to do…” (Wesley… I thought of you at this very moment)

“Mr. Bean, while I understand your position as an overpaid government employee, not to give me legal or direct advice on the matters at hand, I implore you to at least try to point me in the right direction. Because I can promise you, if I walk out of this office and I am not clear on what I need to do you will receive a barrage of phone messages, emails and letters from me, the likes of which you cannot even begin to comprehend. You will pray that Sheldon comes back and you can hand me off to him again. You will beg Sheldon to take my case. But Sheldon cannot help you this time. You alone will be on the receiving end of my wrath, Mr. Bean and that is not a pleasant place to live…. NOW… if this was your mother… and this was your scenario… what would the most efficient way to handle the matter?”

Within 10 minutes I had what I needed and we parted with a handshake…I do believe he was trembling just a little. 

Friday, June 20, 2014

A Special Kind of Crazy

At this point in my life I have realized we all have those members of our family that will try our patience, tolerance, physical and emotional limits. No family is immune. There is at least one in every family I know.
Most of the time they are just crazy enough that we find them amusing and they are a lot of fun to be around. But then there are the ones that will divide, destroy and alienate everyone in the family. Where do you draw the line with family members you love?

I personally feel that when that person does not want to help themselves and is a danger to those around them it is time to put foot in their ass. When they are so self- centered and bent on self-destruction that they don’t care who they destroy in the process it is time to limit their victims to only themselves. Blame it on whatever mental impairment you want to,drugs, or alcohol.... there is no excuse in enabling these people to destroy everyone and everything in their path.

When you have tried to do the right thing and get them help … and it doesn’t help, it may be time for the end of the line tough love. To cease enabling these people to continue on their disastrous path and facilitating the crash to their own personal “rock bottom” may be the best gift you could ever give them. It may work… it may not work but in many cases you do not have a choice. They have to want to help themselves.

Here in the South, hopefully they end up being one of those relatives that are just crazy enough that we don’t lock them away…

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

FYI - I am Royalty

A good friend of mine asked me the other day how I was doing since my mother passed away. I said I was ok… doing ok… and then they asked me if I was going to be one of those people that had to be medicated.

Nope, I said, I plan on being just as bitchy as ever. And I haven’t even hit menopause yet – just warning you… (hey that kind of looks like me too!)

Monday, June 16, 2014

Since I've Been Gone....

Today is Monday if you didn't realize it I am here to slap it to ya… yep… its Monday and I have a few things cover since I have been gone….
1 - We spent a lovely 4 days at the beach for our son’s 5th birthday. The ocean was so rough the first day we couldn't even get in it and as we are guarding the 5 year old from going too far out (his knees is too far out by the way) the waves beat us to death and we go back to the house like war refugees. The next day it was even worse and the poor kids didn't even need any scolding about the water… they sat on the edge of the waves and sand.
I never have to worry about getting too much sun that is for sure… I think the maximum stay for everyone (not me) is about 2 hours and they are ready to do something else. I obsessively lather my kids in sunscreen so thank God they have never experienced a real sunburn. And I usually only half way protect myself and on many occasions ended up with the zebra stripe on my leg where I missed a whole line with the sunscreen. I did good this time though, no zebra stripes.

We have a kiddie pool for our son and fill it up for him to play in after we get back from the beach. For some reason he thinks that is the place where he rinses himself off and inevitably ends up naked while playing in his little pool. He could care less who is around. Knowing this is designated “naked time” we try to position the pool so we can limit his exposure to neighbors. But when we aren't watching his every move he is liable to jump on his tricycle and peddle to the dock and back. I think it is a little boy thing… a couple of years ago we had neighbors with young boys all under the age of 8 and they thought the return from the beach was naked time too. One of their sons about 5 years old was fascinated that he had body parts that would fit through the knit on a hammock. Swinging, dangling and giggling at himself.

2- I love my deck… I love the tree that completely covers my deck. I hate that the damn tree sheds like a hairy dog in the summertime and there are leaves everywhere. We came home from the beach and my deck was covered in dried leaves. The plants were half dead and apparently I need to figure out what to do with the dry cat food because we now have a fly problem. I spent a small fortune on deck furniture…and I am NOT going to sit there and swat stupid flies all summer. I still have about 10-12 boards to paint on the damn deck on the upper part and the entire lower part which isn't much and I can do that in the fall to be honest. I will bust a move this week and get those last boards done. This first picture is the tree that shades the whole deck. It is an amazing thing this black walnut tree... and when the end of the summer comes you better be sitting under an umbrella cause it will toss huge black walnuts at your head. And they hurt.
3- I miss paper books. I get everything I read now via ebook and I truly miss a paper book. But I don’t have any more room in my house for a paper book. I have too many books as it is and now I have too many ebook on my Nook. I know it is old school and I have progressed with the times – but I still miss the smell of a real book, the turning of the pages in a real book and the feel of holding it in my hands. But if I had a paper book I might never finish even one… I can read my ebook on my phone, Nook, iPad and laptop anywhere at anytime. I can’t carry a paper book with me everywhere so I can get a chapter in if I have some downtime at the Doctors office.  Sometimes technology sucks.
4- Next year I will have a pool. Period. With my deck extended and around it.

OMG – I just realized I will have to paint that damn thing too. 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The Discovery of Jack Bauer

I have just discovered Jack Bauer.
And I could just pinch him. 

I started watching this new season – 24 Live Another Day and I ended up obsessively watching it until I was completely caught up and current. I go home at lunch and watch an episode. I stay up later than everyone else and watch an episode.
And me being the kind of person that reads all the books in a series in the correct order; I now have to go back and watch 8 seasons of this damn show- 192 episodes, or I will go completely insane wondering how he got to where he is with this new series.

But when I told Miller about it this was what he said:

Me – We have to watch all the episodes of 24 – 8 seasons – 192 shows… from the beginning.
Miller – Why
Me – Because I discovered Jack Bauer and I just love him
Miller – He is too short for you
Me – He doesn’t know that
Miller – You just love him cause he is a “lost boy”
Me – Oh my I am sure that is part of it… my first vampire crush…
Miller – Yeah… Jamie Gertz was hot
Me – Whatever (eye roll) …where is the remote? We have to get started…
192- 43 minute episodes should only take us the rest of this year.
Miller – you know that show comes on Monday night… I’m not giving up Monday night football
Me – Like I would give up Monday night football! That is why God invented the DVR.
Thank God also for Amazon Prime… all seasons … free (not really but sort of)… on my TV, Nook, computer and even my phone. So…it is ON now!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Friday was the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 Allied troops landed along a 50-mile stretch of heavily-fortified French coastline, to fight Nazi Germany on the beaches of Normandy, France. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which, “we will accept nothing less than full victory.” More than 5,000 Ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by day’s end, the Allies gained a foot-hold in Continental Europe. The cost in lives on D-Day was high. More than 9,000 Allied Soldiers were killed or wounded, but their sacrifice allowed more than 100,000 Soldiers to begin the slow, hard slog across Europe, to defeat Adolf Hitler’s troops.

The youngest of these brave men are now at least 87 years old. Every year in the month of November I have the privilege of being able to spend about 24 hours in the presence of such men. They are from all walks of life and they have so many different stories to tell. When they see the WWII Memorial in Washington DC for the first time it is a moment to remember.
Their stories are so amazing - I can barely get my imagination around the challenges these men faced at such a young age. So many of them lied about their age so they could enlist in the army and defend freedom. This was a world war.. it spanned most of the world as we know it and these men fought it on foot, in the air and on the sea.
160,000 allied troops landed in one spot, on the beach and much like the front lines of the British in the revolutionary war, when one went down on the front the next guy stepped in his place. They just kept going, stepping over their fallen comrades to begin the march to defeat the Nazis. They knew so many of them would never make it off that beach alive. They knew it ahead of time, yet they did it, as young as they were, sacrificing themselves for the freedoms we still have today. I read somewhere recently that Eisenhower was terrified of the decision he made, he couldn't hold his cup of coffee and even debated it until the morning of June 6, 1944. He saw no other way. He knew the casualties would be high but he also knew that this was the weak spot and it was necessary to go in with the unbelievable show of force and will needed to gain an advantage with a foothold in Europe.

God bless them and every soldier that defends the freedoms we have in this great country.

They are truly the greatest generation.

De-clutter Update


I bought a new Dooney today... I HAD to have it.

Shut up

Thursday, June 5, 2014

10 Questions (and my answers) to help me De-clutter

I found these helpful/stupid questions online to help me clarify what is worth saving or tossing in my house...

Is this something I use regularly?
            Define regularly…. I need to be more specific… once a week? Once a month? Once a year? I can’t make a decision on such a vague question. I use my luggage once a year… but I am not getting rid of it because I only use it once a year.. so I need a better definition of “regularly”
      If this is not something I use regularly, is it something I love?
      If I bought it … chances are I love it.
     Am I holding on to this because I think I should love it?
           Who wrote these questions… seriously
      Am I saving this just in case?
       I have a lot of things I am saving just in case… luggage – just in case I can find some time to go somewhere, shoes – I have a pair of shoes(actually 3 pr of the same shoe, in the same color) that l love… but haven’t worn in about 10 years. I may need them one day with the right outfit. I have a lot of clothes that I may need one day when I drop about 30 pounds… when that happens I will certainly be ready.
      Do I have multiples of the same thing?
      Hell yes…I am a woman - I have too many pair of black shoes…who doesn't? I have several Dooney & Bourke handbags and I need every one of them AND their matching wallets. I have several bottles of my favorite OPI nail polish and that is because they discontinue the damn color and I can’t find it anymore.
      Could something else I own do the same job?
      NO. Why would anyone think that one Dooney & Bourke bag would be a universal bag that could be carried with anything and all the time. NO – must have several, in several colors – with matching wallets. Non Negotiable.
      Am I holding on to a broken item to fix one day?
      Now I don’t have a problem with this, broken items do not interest me. i just as soon buy another one that looks just like it … toss it.
      Am I keeping this out of obligation or expectation?
     NO problems here either… unless it is a gift from my husband or children if I don’t need it … toss it
      Is this item worth the time I spend cleaning or storing it?
      Cleaning and storing?? The only thing I can think of that would fit in this category is books and DVDs. I do admit to having too many of both.
      Could I use this space for something else?
      I think I would only put something else in its place… maybe a new Dooney & Bourke bag J

After going through these 10 Useless questions I can honestly say that I am no closer to de-cluttering my space than I was before reading them. These did not help me classify anything. So I am either a high end hoarder or I was never cluttered to begin with.

Sounds good to me… moving on now… 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Life Goes on... Moves On...

When faced with the loss of someone so important to you that you feel you won’t be able to exist without them, you must remember that the world moves on with or without your participation, because it is certainly moving on without them. There are three words in the English language that have more meaning behind them than any other phrase. “Life goes on”. It does. With or without you it does go on.

No doubt about it and I am living, witnessing and testifying to that truth. My kids are still growing, bills are due, my teenager’s social schedule is filled with birthdays and sleepovers and my little man just graduated preschool and starts kindergarten soon. Time didn't stop because my mother died. The day she died is like a block of time that I can lock up and put away in a safe place. I don’t want to revisit that block of time very often, but there are still days when I go back there, do the ugly cry, feel sorry for myself about the injustice of it all and ask WHY? It is so easy to slip into that sadness and let it consume me but I can’t allow that. I have two children that need their mother, a husband that needs his wife and I need them just as badly. Now is about the time my mother would grab me by my shoulders and tell me to snap out of it, find my bootstraps and big girl panties and she would be right, as she always was.

Time is the one thing that heals, mends and repairs the broken heart so that we can continue living. Don’t fight it. Let it brush past you because as it does you are one step further from the sadness than you were a moment ago and every step counts. Never think that you are forgetting or leaving your loved one behind, you aren't, they are with you and you are merely living without their physical presence until you can be with them again. 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Typical Maroon Shit - OMG I was Hacked!!!

Hey guys and gals. This is Jr, Michele maroon-barefoot's other (better) half. This is just a quick anecdote about my lovely wife. I love God, I love my younguns, I love peanut butter, and I love Slayer. And, I love me some Michele Maroon.

You know why I love me some Michele Maroon?
I don't know why.

She will make the biggest mess in the world making herself a ham sandwich. It's like an old man in a rest home trying to cut a block of cheese in half with a plastic knife.
She tracks grass, leaves, and pine straw in the house like a hobo.

But, she is the sweetest, most caring, most wonderful, purtiest girl I have ever met. And I love her and am proud to be her house-boy.

Even though she drives me crazy with her bat-shit crazy crap that makes me insane. But she is my maroon. And I am in love...