Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Tahoe was beautiful this time of year. In truth, it’s beautiful anytime of year, but with a fresh blanket of milky white powder atop the evergreens, it was awe-inspiring. Heavenly Village sits nestled in towering mountains and the glistening aquamarine waters of Lake Tahoe. This was just what Samantha needed after the hectic holidays. Sam had always been close to her family, and she truly enjoyed spending time with them over the holidays, but this year with her father gone, things had been different. She had always been very close to him, he was the one who understood her best when the rest of the family just didn’t seem to get it. He was always the one on her side of the fence, encouraging her, listening and providing her with a sense of being. He was also always the one to fend off the questions from the rest of them. Why aren’t you dating? Isn’t there anyone that seems interesting enough to give a chance? Don’t you want children someday? This isn’t healthy, Sam. She knew they meant well and were only concerned for her but she wished they’d back off. Why was it so hard for them to understand? Lately it seemed to have gotten worse, probably because they knew the loss of her father was going to take its toll and make matters worse. What they didn’t seem to understand was that she was already committed, she had already given all of herself to one man and although it had been five years since he disappeared, she wasn’t ever going to be able to look at another man the same again. Five years she thought, it was hard to imagine it hadn’t been longer. It felt like a lifetime, more like a thousand years, a damned eternity even. At the beginning she kept herself busy with the investigation, trying to find answers only to discover more questions. Now she just felt blank. Numb. Off in the distance a squirrel attempted to chase off his nemesis. Trying to push the thoughts from her mind, she watched the foreign shapes take form in the snow as he pounced from spot to spot before scurrying up the next tree. The branches bounced as he jumped from limb to limb and droplets of silvery snow plopped to the ground below. The air hinted of vanilla and pineapple from the abundance of Jeffery Pines that lined the mountainsides. The air was crisp and refreshing. It had been years since Sam had skied. Five years at least and she felt a bit tarnished. Her father had taught her to ski on this very mountain when she was just 5 years old. Although she hadn’t been here for quite some time, this mountain was like an old family friend. Growing up, Sam’s family had taken several trips a year to ski Tahoe. It felt strangely consoling to be back. Heavenly was always her favorite mountain with lifts and spectacular views on both the California and Nevada side of Lake Tahoe. She remembered the laughter in her fathers voice as he’d told her to slow down a little. She glanced back in the squirrel’s direction before she decided to head down the mountain. He was no where in site. She pushed off with her right leg and began a slow slalom weaving back and forth across the mountain. The slopes were starting to get busier as it shifted from early morning. A group of college aged kids blew past her, playfully hollering and weaving among them selves. Two girls lagged behind engrossed in conversation away from the group. She was starting to feel more comfortable with each turn and began relaxing when suddenly a familiar voice spoke loudly from behind.
“Hello Sam”
She tensed up, whisked sharply to the right, stopping dead in her tracks. She turned her head to his voice and feeling nearly frozen in place, she toppled over….

Friday, November 20, 2009

Bite me like you mean it

Call me a geek but I'm excited about seeing New Moon tonight, I'm taking my 16 yr old son, his girlfriend and a friend of theirs. Which that alone is fabulous, getting your 16 yr old and their friends to spend a Friday night with their parents is fabulous in its self and seeing New Moon is an added bonus. I was a late bloomer in terms of joining the Twilight bandwagon. When It first came out and I was told the basis of the story, it didn't sound like anything I would be interested in. I wasn't really into the whole werewolves, shape shifters or vampire thing. But it was everywhere. T-Shirts, dolls, hype, media, news and I had no idea what they were talking about. I figured it was some teen culture type movie that surely wouldn't be appealing to an adult. However, when my 16 year old son began reading a book just shy of 500 pages with the sequels each having between 550-640 pages I decided I wanted to know what he was reading. I began reading Twilight and found I couldn't put it down. It wasn't at all what I had expected.  I was expecting dark and twisted grizzly blood scenes, when in fact I found a love story. I mean sure there's some blood, they are vampires after all, but not the gruesome story I would have expected.  Hoards of teenage girls drooling over Jacob and Edward trying to decide which one they would choose, well I for one, as a woman, tend to be drawn to all things shiny and sparkly, so when a man's skin can shine like a diamond in the sunlight, I'm going to take notice.  sparkling-edward-cullen-wallpaper-small Not to mention, the shiny cars they drive and the super power ability to save your life. Maybe it's shallow, maybe it's a bit silly, but I have been bitten by the bug that is all things Twilight. At first I thought it was a bit creepy for a woman my age to have a twinge of lust over Edward's 18 year old character, but he is a vampire, and he has been 18 years old for a very, very long time and he is shiny so I guess that makes it justifiable to my warped mind.
P.S. I am off all of the antibiotics, mostly recovered from  my stint of a mysterious illness that landed me in the hospital and finally able to see through the haze and plan on attempting to write something more coherent next week so please check back.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Press the Pause Button

Honey I'm Home!

I promise to attempt to write something very soon. I have been sick, in the hospital and now am finally home. YAY! However, I'm in a bit of a haze of medications and so I'm not really able to write anything coherent, err, well, actually, I haven't even had a very coherent thought, much less attemt to make any sense on a blank page. As soon as I can see through the cobwebs in my head again, I'll get back to it.
If your just plain curious,and really bored,  feel free to read on. Warning: Boring Medical Shit Coming...
I get a treatment every 4 weeks or so through an IV which is administered through a port in my chest. The procedure is called IVIG. It is to treat a condition Called Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy . In english, it is an autoimmune disease. Last week when my nurse attempted to do my routine treatment, something went wrong with my port and I felt something "pop" in my neck. After evaluation, we went ahead with my treatment using a vein rather than my port and the treatment went as usual. The day following, I started feeling bad, hurting all over, I spent the night in the ER, had the swine flu test done, along with several other tests and concluded I was hurting for no apparent reason. Home I went. The next day I had a fever of near 103 and still hurt all over, head, fingers, legs, hips, just all over pain. Of course, I assumed I must have the H1N1 and had a false negative test due to having my treatment. Convinced my treatment was hiding the flu symptoms, I headed back to the ER with severe body aches and chills, to the point I chipped a freaking tooth from my teeth chattering. Only me. Anyway, after a very convincing plea to the doctor that surely it would be better to give me Tamiflu and send me home, he insisted on admitting me. I thought surely I would go home in the morning. Apparently my bloodwork showed my white blood cells to be near depleation and ended me up in what they call "reverse isolation". It meant I was not at risk of being contagious but that anyone who entered my room could get me sick. They started talking about oncologists and hematologists and bone marrow transplants, like my head wasn't already spinning. I was put on every antibiotic they make, continued taking the Tamiflu (just in case) and made into a  human voodoo doll I'm sure. Finally, it was determined that my port had indeed broken. Remember the "pop" noise. The port snapped, became severly infected and had mutiple clots, which explained why I was having a hard time breathing, felt like shit, and stayed in a drug induced haze. Finally, a week later, I had surgery to remove the port, and got to come home. And here I am. I have to do a bit of follow up on the whole white blood cells thing but that's about it. I'm a little sore from the surgery but not to bad and alot groggy and foggy from all the drugs but should be back to my old self soon. I hear I slept through a baby hurricane. It seems I do remember hearing an acorn hitting the hospital window at some point and I'm scratching my head wondering why they give you sleeping pills and then wake you up all night.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

You look like I need another drink

I remember the first time I looked into his steel blue eyes, that crazy blonde hair and those perfectly sculpted cheeks. That was it, that first glance and there was nothing I could do about it. He knew it to, that very first second; he knew I would forever be his.  We could lay next to each other for hours, just taking in each others expressions. I wanted to take in his every breath and memorize his every expression.  I fell deeply, madly in love the first time I laid my eyes upon him.  I knew my time with him would be too short, I knew it would seem like an instant and I'd be left to wonder how it happened so quickly and so I had to cherish it all. There would be many wonderful days, there would be some hard days, but most of all, enjoyment and pure fulfillment. The first time I brought him home to meet my family, they quickly fell for him as I had. He was intoxicating and beautiful and perfect. He was always a charmer, always engaging, even then.
His older brother loved him also, they would spend hours together, laughing, fighting and sharing. He was the second born of three boys.  Three boys who were obviously adored by their mother, three boys who would cause havoc, raise holy hell and charm the pants off a nun. They were very different from each other in many ways, yet exactly the same in many more ways. Three boys, My three boys.  Watching them grow together was the single most fascinating thing I have ever experienced in life.  My three boys, the musketeers, all aptly named after cowboy outlaws.  They were experienced tricksters and wicked spoiled.  I remember days of kool-aid stands, countless football games, school plays, lego's and matchbox cars strewn about strategically placed to trip up even the most skilled of mothers and fathers.
I remember the fighting between brothers, and the alliance of brothers against adversaries. I remember coming home from work one day and discovering that the big purple dinosaur; Barney had been replaced by bodies draped over chairs with cords attached from the television to the video game controllers their hands held.   I wondered how everything had changed so quickly. I remember bike rides and homework and days floating on the river. I remember longing for the days when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles rocked and girls had cooties.  I remember the horrid, tumultuous teenage years, the rules broken, the laws broken; in some cases, and the girlfriends that were suddenly awesome. I remember triumphs of overcoming issues and obstacles. I remember it all like it was yesterday. It was yesterday.
Today I am praying that the child who was so very small in my arms one day, who means the world to me, who taught me so much, is really ready for the decisions he faces and actions he will be facing.  Today, my middle son, who has grown, in the blink of an eye, is in the process of being sworn into the United States military. Today, as I look into those steel blue eyes, I say, Son, I am proud and humbled at what you have become and today, just today, you look like I need another drink.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Seek Therapy immediately....

Mom gave me life, the beach gives me sanity and Vodka keeps me from killing people.

Wow, Happy Monday readers,
Ok, that statement was highly contradictory. Mondays and happiness are not usually associated, and this one is no different. After spending a good bit of the weekend, well, away, it's hard to be amongst the madness again.

Thursday I had the delicious pleasure of a day of pampering from my friends over at the Spa. I was treated with Swedish massage, face-lift massage, pedicure, haircut, color and highlights all while sipping cocktails. Did I mention massage? And cocktails too! Positively fabulush! Not to mention my new do is awesome! I was treated with a product called Caribbean Therapy, which is some sort of concoction made of sugar cane extract and massaged with several AVEDA body oils. Fantastic! I have been told on occasion throughout life I should seek therapy, I had no idea how great this would be. I may need to see my therapist weekly.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My Rehabulous Life

This past weekend the Vodka supplier and I had a little mini-vacation from reality. We had the pleasure of staying in a beautiful condo overlooking the gorgeous Gulf of Mexico. This was an especially rehabulous occasion because this was also the weekend of the 38th Annual National Shrimp Festival.  Let me just say, the Gulf Coast can throw some parties ya'll. We have festivals and parades and other high-fallutin celebrations on regular occasion. Whether it be "Fat Tuesday", the Festival of Flowers, Bayfest, The Seafood Festival, the Sausage Festival, yes we really have a festival for sausage, this is the south folks, or my personal favorite, the Bush-Wacker Festival, and let's not forget "insert your name here" Fest, which is a month long celebration of your birthday, we have something for everyone. Whatever the occasion, we just look for a reason to party. And party we do.

Each year the "Shrimp Fest" as us local riff-raff refer to it, draws in over 300,000 people to the Gulf Shores area. The festival is said to have originated as a "Blessing of the Boats" but has migrated into a celebration of the King of Crustaceans. There's fried shrimp, cocktail shrimp, shrimp gumbo, shrimp on a stick and, well, you get the picture. Aside from shrimp there are over 300 vendors comprised of Art, arts and crafts, a retail marketplace and tons and tons of food. I love the smell of a beer tent blended with the salty sea air. The best thing about the parties we throw, Free Admission. Sweeeet. The festival also has two stages for musical entertainment and many local musicians perform as well as some well known musicians.

This particular year, we decided to partake in Saturday nights festivities. The featured band was Foghat. Remember, "Slow Ride" or "I just want to make love to you"? Good Stuff indeed. The second bandstand had a local band, I can't quite remember the name, but they were comprised of one member wearing what looked like a sumo wrestlers suit with a mullet and a second in a sequined tank top adorning an afro. They did mostly a funky rendition of cover music from the 80's. The attire was entertaining alone. Anyway, we were so busily consumed in the fantastic taste of a beautifully made Cosmo, although lacking in presentation, as it was in a giant plastic cup, that we made it over to the Main bandstand just as the last song was played. We could have stayed and waited in line for autographs from the members of the band, however a signed Foghat poster hanging on my bedroom wall is not going to have the same feel as say...never ago.  I didn't have one morsel of shrimp, not a bite of the world famous, Cajun Pistol and didn't purchase one single "I like it Dirty" Martini tank top. And damn I wanted that. However, the Cosmo's' Too. Die. For.  The view from the condo, spectacular...the Sunday nap on the beach to cure Saturdays festivities...fabulous, and the entire night away from the nuthouse... superb. All in all, we had a rehabulous time!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Dryer Incident

Laundry is really not an interesting topic, especially, in my household. As you recall, I’ve mentioned the large quantities of occupants I dwell with, so the sound of a continual washing machine is commonplace around here. Last night, the dryer broke. It just stopped. No more bellowing out the sounds of shoes thudding inside or a zipper clanking. Just call a repair man and have it fixed, you say. End. of. story.

I wish it were that simple.

My Father, "The Bishop" is quite worthy of repairing many things. He has decided he will repair the dryer.
I'm quietly doing some research in another part of the house when I am summoned to the Laundry room. Upon my arrival, I find the dryer is completely disassembled. There is a giant hollow tube in the middle of the room that looks something like a metal barrel without ends on it. This is obviously the spinning device used to circulate the clothes. Even I can asses this. There is also two sides and a bottom of what once looked like a dryer. My father is standing behind the shell of what is left  holding a small black box with some sort of gauge on it and wires extending from it to the dryer. This is a multi-meter I am told. Something to do with measuring voltage or ohms or something. Anyway, he is testing the dryer and needs me to push the button, his hands are full. We determine whatever he is testing is working just fine. He informs me he will be moving the dryer and all of its remaining pieces into the garage, (with the spare refrigerator, I mind you) to continue his exploratory surgery and since "Gadget" has moved in, we can use his dryer until ours is back in service. He'll bring it in from the garage. Great. Case closed.
This afternoon, I walk out into the garage and find "the bishop" hunched over sandpapering his dolly. (a two-wheeled device used to move heavy objects). Without word, I look around and the garage has been transformed into what appears to be a surgical room for a junkyard.

Against my better judgment, I ask, "what are you doing, dad"

“What does it look like I'm doing!  I'm sandpapering rust spots off my dolly.”

“What about the dryer?”

“The dolly has to be painted before It can be used to move the dryer.” 

Again against my better judgment, Why?

“Well. because. it. looks. bad.”

(This is where I really show my stupidty).

"So does the dryer, now."