Why I'm here....

Since I've always been quick with an opinion an old friend once lost and again found suggested that perhaps I should share with more people my commentary. Never being one to pass on a challenge I thought I'd give it a whirl.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

To Drink or Not To Drink...

To drink or not to drink that is the question. Yeah but before you get too excited let me tell you I’m not talking about liquor. What am I talking about? I’m of course talking about water. Did you know that your body is comprised of over 50% water? They say the average male is about 60% and the average female about 55%. Your blood is comprised of 70% water. Lean muscle in the body is 75% water by weight. The human brain is 90 to 95% water. So now you’re going, “Yeah and so what?” Most people do not seem to like to drink water that I talk to. As with anything else I’ve found that water is an acquired taste. Yes I said taste. So many people tell me all the time it has no taste, but to me it does, and if it really doesn’t then why not drink it? The thing is that water is vital to your health and your well being. Did you know that drinking just 2% less than the required daily amount of water that your body needs can cause dehydration, headaches, fatigue, nausea, and forgetfulness? Let us not forget to mention that your body in its need for water will make you hungry when it actually wants water? Yep that is correct, next time you’re thinking you’re really hungry and you shouldn’t be you should drink a good 8 to 16 ounces of water to see if it goes away. Your body will crave foods because it can draw water from them. To your body it’s logical. Here is another kicker too: You can not drink soda and think you’re getting water. There is no useable source of fluid for the body in soda. Caffeine will actually dehydrate the water you have. The plain old facts are that you need to drink actual water to maintain a healthy balance. Your skin will even look healthier and your hair too if you start drinking enough of it. This doesn’t mean go over kill though because there is such a think as too much water. Every heard of too much of a good thing? The average person should consume 64 to 120 ounces of water on any given day. Still don’t think you can do it because you hate water? Well there are flavored waters sold in stores, but most of those have carbonation which is hard on the intestinal tract, but they are still a valid option. They will not be the same as plain water, but they will help. My favorite option and one I’ve been given approval by medical staff on is the Wyler’s to go and the Crystal light to go packs. If you’re not in the mood for plain water you can carry these with you and add them to water for flavoring. They contain about 5 calories a pack and are extremely good. Still plain water is better but this will work. They do not really cost all that much either. The Wyler’s drink mixes are 10 packs for $1 at Walgreens or about $1.18 at Wal-Mart’s. The Crystal Light is going to run you around $2.29 to $2.99 depending on whether you want energy drinks, regular, or immune fighting properties in the drink mix. Either way you can’t go wrong by adding a little water. Now it’s true until your body adjusts to your drinking a lot of water you will more than likely be making more trips to the bathroom, but hey look at it this way, added exercise. Your body does regulate and that slacks off after it adjusts to the amount you are drinking though. You should notice an improved difference in the way you feel after only a week and you will also notice that after a couple of weeks you really start wanting water. What are some of my favorite drink mixes? My very favorite drinks are Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade and Wyler’s Grape. I take them with me when I go to restaurants. Extra bonus there in that I don’t buy a drink I just simply get water and add my own flavor. How can you beat that? Now the question for you is simply: To drink or not to drink? That is the question.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Martina & Trace...

What can one say about two such outrageously talented performers together under one roof for one spectacular night? It was an awesome concert. Not withstanding the lack of ability on the planning of whomever threw it together, I still had an amazing time. Tom and I got to the coliseum and went up to the lounge to relax before the concert. I saw lots of cowboys, so that wasn't all bad. Then we found that there was a long line in as they didn't really have the routes into the concert outlined in a manner that made for ease of getting to your seat, of which they decided that they needed to remove our seats to make more walkway room and then tried to sit us up in the stands and way away from the stage. We were suppose to be five rows back. I was not pleased to say the least. Then the usher ran off with my tickets. We ended up standing at the back on the floor, which although at first I was frustrated it turned out to be a good place to be, especially when we found out we were standing directly in front of the makeshift stage that Martina McBride came out to during one of her performances. If we had been bold enough we literally could have reached out and touched her legs. We were that close. So where we ended up wasn't so bad after all and being on the floor I was able on multiple occasions to walk down right in front of the main stage and take photos of both Trace and Martina.
Trace Adkins of course could just stand on stage and I would be happy, but he was quiet charming and entertaining. He even cracked a joke after an audience member gave him a beer that he'd rec
ently come to realize he's allergic to beer. It seems every time he drinks it he ends up in jail he joked. He went on to drink the beer. His performance was mesmerizing to me. So much man and such a velvety voice. Then Martina of course was flawless and thankfully she sang a lot of her old school type music. One of which was a song off her "Time Less" album. I was happy about that because I like her older music much better than the new. All in all a good time was had. I am still not happy with the coliseum. Good money was paid and expectations were set and although it turned out OK, I didn't care for their lack of good judgement and planning. If you would like to see the rest of the pictures I took at the concert you can find them on my face book page.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I’m not really much for flavored coffees and I’m definitely not a cappuccino girl. Normally I like my coffee either with two sweet-n-lows only or sometimes I’ll add cream too. Now, I’m not apposed to adding a little Irish Cream (real, not imitation) to my coffee or even Bailey’s, but I really just don’t get the fascination with the flavored drinks, but then of course I like the taste of coffee. I didn’t always. Like most things in life coffee is an acquired taste. None of us come out of the womb and immediately go yeah baby coffee. I worked a part time job for the Fort Wayne Children’s zoo in the middle to late 80’s. I loved that job. It wasn’t a job made to pay very much, but the people where friendly and fun for the most part and it was good honest work. Earl Wells was one of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet, as is Jim Anderson who replaced Earl. I had a lot of good times back then. More innocent in my way of thinking but I did learn a lot of hard life lessons while working there. I also learned to love coffee. I worked at the zoo year round which meant several long winter days out in the freezing cold weather doing all sorts of things. The worst I can remember is using a huge hose to clear paths of ice and snow. I would go in to the break room frozen solid and somehow something cold just was not going to cut it. The only thing hot there was of course coffee which I quickly learned to drink just to warm myself up. Before I knew what was happening not only did I drink it, but I sort of craved it. Now I’m not a die hard like some of my friends and family. I have a coffee pot at home, but I rarely use it. I usually use those little tea bag coffee’s if I’m at home and want one. Me hyped up on a whole pot of coffee isn’t a pretty thing. As most of my friends will attest I normally have enough energy all on my own without it. So today I had a coupon to try McDonald's new Caramel Frappe. I thought it would probably be a waste of my time in that I’ve rarely found any flavored coffee drink I like and I sure as heck don’t like their iced coffee’s, but it was free so I figured why not? I’ve got to tell you… I LOVED IT! I could definitely see this little drink getting addictive, although I was half tempted not to get it and to get a shamrock shake (forgot those were out now and I love them). I settled on the drink I went in for though and I was not disappointed in the least. Nutrient wise a small one of these has about 130 calories (50 of which come from fat), 5 grams of fat (3.5 of which is saturated), 20 mg of cholesterol, 40 mg of sodium, 21 grams of sugar, 1 gram of protein, 200 vitamin a (IU) and 40 mg of calcium. All in all that isn’t really that bad. I wouldn’t advice drinking them by the gallons but for a little afternoon pick me up, especially after spending a few hours at the gym, it’s really not that bad. Hey and what better way to put a little boost into your afternoon than with whip cream and caramel? OK, I am talking about on the drink here guys!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Forge On

You are in charge of your own emotions. You are also in charge of the way you choose to perceive things. In life you will either be a pessimist or an optimist. Now whether you agree with me on any of this or not, it’s just my opinion, you and I both know it’s true. There isn’t one person out there in this life that doesn’t have some kind of trouble or problem going on in their life. Every one of us could get up every day and start thinking about all the bad things that are going on in our life. We could constantly complain about how bad life sucks and how we don’t have this or that. We could whine and bask in our own misery. I don’t know about you but that really doesn’t sound like a lot of fun to me. I choose to look at the positives in my life. I woke up this morning and didn’t have any aches for once. I got to the health club in a timely manner and got my workout done. I found a pair of shoes for my evening out on Thursday (can’t always wear sneakers) and I got to work in time to do a walk before my shift. Yes it is raining out, but it isn’t SNOW. That is just one example of finding the positives. Now I know there are days that is just too hard to do. A friend of mine lost her boyfriend in a car crash yesterday afternoon. I’m sure it will be a while before she can get up and find the positives easy to reach for. It was also hard the morning I got up and had an email telling me good bye from my friend Andy and then finding out he had ended his life. I still tried though. I wrapped my mind around the fact that I have family and friends that love me. I dwelled on the fact that I still had today to live and I tried to think about the fact that he had done what he chose to do. So, yes, I do understand it’s not always easy to be positive, but in this life you can choose to laugh or you can choose to cry. You can walk around thinking about everything that is going wrong, or you can choose to think about everything that has gone right. If there are things you don’t like about your life though and they are within your ability to change them, then you should do what you must to change it. Don’t sit around wishing they would change or that someone would change them for you. We can control our own destinies. I believe that. So forge on with your day with a positive attitude. Believe that you are worth your own efforts to succeed and be happy. Whatever you do… remember to smile, laugh and love as often as you can because life is to short and it would be a shame not to have as much happiness as you can while you’re here.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Sex in America

Warning to anyone who doesn’t want to know… Don’t read this…

A friend of mine is hosting an adult toy party in March. I suppose those types of events would shock some people. I’m not easily shocked so yes I’ll be there. For all my family and friends that read that I’m sorry if that is shocking, but I am forty-two years old so yes I am familiar with sex. What is surprising more than anything I could find being shown or sold at this party is that our government once again in it’s wisdom has stepped in and said what can and can not go on in the privacy of ones very own home. There are a few guys who are gay who wanted to attend this party, but the government has decided that they do not want to allow mixed sexes at this party. You can either have all guys or all girls. Now what I don’t understand is what would the difference be in “straight” guys and girls attending this party or a room full of “lesbians” or “gay” guys attending this party together? Obviously the intent here is that if you have men at this party with women then of course something of a sexual nature could happen. Heaven forbid we are all adults and can act humanly. Isn’t it the same in all aspects of our lives? I mean when I go to the health club I share a locker room with women who may be straight or may be gay. I have no way of knowing and to tell you the truth I don’t rightly care either way or even think about it when I’m there. We all manage to behave ourselves, get dressed and co-exist without anyone being molested in the process. It just seems to me to be a little on the extreme side for our government yet again. Either way you look at it; these parties are not for everyone. I mean there are the light of heart that would die upon seeing some of the toys people choose to use in their time of leisure. I know what most of the toys are and what most of them are used for if anyone has any questions out there for me, but that doesn’t mean I use them. There are some of them that I look at and have to wonder why on earth someone would want to do that in the first place, but hey to each their own. This upcoming party has definitely made for some interesting talk while just sitting around in small groups. It is also very enlightening in that you find that even in the smallest of groups there is a wide and diverse difference in the way each and every person feels about sexual behavior and what is or is not “out of the norm”. I say whatever you do behind closed doors is up to you and your partner and no one else as long as it’s legal and there are no minors involved. Whatever you choose to do though please practice it safely so you can stay around and enjoy a few more years of your life. I was listening to my IPOD at work and came across the song by Reba, “She Thinks His Name Was John”. It reminded me, not that I had forgotten, about how important it is to practice safe sex, of course abstinence is the safest, but hey what can you do. The song is about a woman who always, except one time practiced safe sex and from that one time she contracted aids. If you have a partner who you trust and who you love get tested and stay faithful. That is probably the best advice I can give you because that few minutes could mean your life. Sex in America has not really changed over the years, but the way people view it definitely has. Stay safe.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Another Mind Boggling “Holiday”...

Valentines Day is another of those so called holiday’s I could do without. Whether I’m involved in a relationship or single, it’s one I just rightly don’t really care for. I’m one of those people who appreciate the little things with no significant reason other than that the man might care about me. I don’t want a holiday around to force him to do something nice. I also then don’t get how women can really want a man, because of said holiday, to take them out to somewhere expensive and buy them lavish gifts. Nice things and nice dinners are nice, but I am a person who appreciates the thoughtfulness behind something much more than the price tag. One of my ex’s one time left me a message at work saying I thought of you and smiled today, left you a little something for when you get home. It was intriguing. There was no holiday, no special meaning to the day other than he thought of me and left me a stuffed cat sitting there with an I love you note card under it’s paw sitting on my sofa for when I got home. My heart melted. Still does at the memory. The same ex also bought me nail polish one time and told me I had beautiful hands and he just knew this polish would shine on my nails. I was talking with a friend yesterday who I think still has it bad for their ex and we were talking about the things this person had been given. You know just because you move on from a relationship doesn’t mean you can’t cherish any good memories you had with them. I’m a firm believer though that once you’ve moved on there is no point in revisiting the relationship. I mean there is a reason it ended and that reason probably hasn’t changed is the way I look at it. If celebrating the holiday with a boyfriend though I would rather it be special time together rather than a dinner in a crowded restaurant. If he’s smart he’ll either buy dinner for us and bring it to the house and set it up or he’ll cook. Then a little movie together, a back rub, a hot bath and whatever else the evening might lead up to and I’m all good. No tons of money necessary and it’s “us” time. Have you considered reading to your lady? I don’t know how other women feel, but I love a man who’ll read to me. It doesn’t matter if it’s something I like or not. The fact that he has his arm around me and is taking the time to read, yes even if it’s the sports page, out loud for me to listen makes me sigh. You know the other day I was listening to a radio talk show and this psychologist was trying to convince women around the country that they should be flattered when a man buys them sexy underwear or intimate apparel. Guys, I’m sorry, but I don’t know any woman who wants this stuff as a gift. The psychologist said it’s a guy’s way of saying he thinks you look good and have a body good enough to wear this. Let me tell you right now guys that all the woman sees is that you want laid and you were not thinking of her when you bought it. Ladies now let me address you… go buy something with him in mind. The man shouldn’t have to do all the work on Valentines Day and if he is sweet enough to come in and rub your aching feet and not be looking for anything in return… why not give him something in return for his effort? Romance is a two way street and that is another reason I don’t like Valentines Day. It’s all set up to put pressure on the poor guys out there. Ladies he deserves to be pampered and spoiled to. So no matter what he does ladies please try to remember it’s the thought that counts and it’s a holiday made to make him feel like a failure if you ask me, but I’ll get off my down with Valentines day kick and simply say this: Have fun, enjoy and love lots, but make Valentines day every day and try to remember to say a kind word, give a soft stroke of your hand gently down the side of her or his face daily, smile at each other, be understanding of bad days and bad moods, embrace time that you share and share all that you feel, take nothing for granted and love completely. Life is a gift and no one knows how much time they have. I reflect on this constantly. My friend Andy isn’t here this Valentines day for me to even tell this, so I will say it to all my family and friends. Happy Valentines Day and God Bless and keep you all. You are loved dearly and thought of daily.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Simpler Time

I remember the anticipation of seeing my grandmothers and my cousins. It was an exhilarating feeling and somehow in my Child's mind it didn’t occur to me that they had the same radio and the same television and the same access to news we did. It always seemed that the folks were talking about the difference between Fort Wayne, Indiana and Pippa Passes/Hindman Kentucky. The two worlds looking back seemed nothing alike. I suppose to a child getting to go away from home and being spoiled would seem different regardless, but there were major differences in the life styles. My parents always took soda pop and potato chips, cookies and pretzels to give out to the people we visited. This was partially because my dad worked a big portion of my childhood for Seyferts Potato chips. In the earlier years we would travel when my dad got off work and often arrived in the wee hours of the morning before anyone had awakened. We would then sit and wait until some semblance of life stirred in the home we were going to. As we grew older it got to were we would leave early morning and get there late afternoon. To me it didn’t really matter which grandmother we went to first. My grandmother Lula lived up a holler that my dad didn’t take the car up. We would park at the end of it and walk. I love the memory of that mere five to ten minute walk along the gravel path and beside the little creek to find my grandmother standing on the edge of the porch with her bright smile welcoming us. She always had a dog that would inevitably come out to great us as well. Oh how I loved those dogs too. We didn’t have a pet for a great portion of my childhood because my dad really didn’t like having them around. He didn’t feel they were clean and I suppose didn’t feel we would be responsible. When we were finally allowed to get a pet it was a cat. My grandmother, Lula’s house was small. It had a half wrap porch that was taller than I was as a child and probably would come about chest high on me now. (That is not short as in I am five foot nine inches tall.) There were two doors we primarily used when going in my grandmothers home. The first one was a side door and if entering it you would step directly into the kitchen and dining room as it was. Immediately to the left was a sink, but it did not have running water, but rather buckets with dippers for getting the water out. You see she had ‘real’ well water and many a times my brother and I have drawn buckets of water up from her well. I even recall one summer when my dad and my uncles dug her a new well. There were fish in the well and if you caught them in the bucket you had to throw them back. Immediately behind the kitchen if you went straight was a bedroom and a door leading to another bedroom which I don’t recall ever having been in. You see my uncle Paul had some issues mentally and he didn’t take visitors except small children and my grandmother. I do recall him sitting in a window where we could see him and he would watch for hours as us children played in the yard just behind the house. There was a pantry in the kitchen and then the living room was off to the right of the kitchen. There were two pull out sofas in that living room where company could sleep. There was an old dresser I would love to have had in the living room, a small television a couple of chairs and a baseboard heater. Out behind the house there were smoke houses and an outhouse out on the hill. No running water or indoor plumbing in this house. It was definitely like stepping back in time. There were chicken coops and a barn that had the creek dug through it to make watering the horses much easier. Except for late night there was no need for television to entertain adults or children either one. The adults would sit and tell stories of days gone by and every relative you could imagine would be there to see us, as well as the occasion neighbor who was just passing by, but be assured they were not strangers for in the hill country everyone knows their neighbors no matter how far apart they live. There were always plenty of cousins for us to play tag or ball with, as well as going down to the creek (Crick in the south) and fishing for craw dads. (Crayfish) -- Lord only knows what kept us from getting bit by rattle snacks and everything else. We would play up and down the hillside and we were rarely careful to watch our step. My grandmother kept corn fields and chickens and hogs. They were a small source of entertainment as well I suppose along with the dozens of cats. Some of those cats were not only house cat. They surely had to be mixed with the bob cats that did roam the hillsides because they were enormous. While south we would make our rounds and attempt to see as many relatives as possible. When we were younger we would stay a week, but as we got older it turned into a two day trip. I suppose the struggles of jobs and work and getting older on my parents behalf may have been responsible for that. We always went to my aunt Bonnie’s. She lived on the same holler as my grandmother Lula. She had these step stairs that went up to her house. She also had lots of children of her own so again we had plenty to do. That was entertaining in that you may hear a wild story from my uncle Forest or even if you were lucky you might get to hear him play some music or he’d show you his horse. My grandmother Jezzie lived a couple of different places over the years. For a while she lived up that same holler and I can remember the wondrous times we had out in the yard playing basketball, chasing the dog and running back to the little creek bed. Then there was the huge basement where we would listen to Johnny Rivers’s records and pretend we were a secret agent, just like in the song. There are so many wonderful memories of those times. It seems so many of those people are no longer with us though. It’s also unfortunately a little more up to date with the times. Relatives there are taking up the Internet and supermarkets are no longer a long journey. I rarely hear of family and friends just getting together to hang out on the porch and reminisce. I’m hopeful though that if I get to go in the spring perhaps for old time sake they will all gather and remember those gone on and times of jubilance and joy. Death is part of life, but only the body dies and the spirit moves on. The memories are always with us. So as I detest this cold weather I do owe it one semblance of gratitude in that since I can’t get outside I did have time for my mind to wonder back over the many people who still live in my heart and the time period where life was a little simpler and time seemed to stand still. This is just one more area of memories that will forever be in my mind.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Easy, Fast and Free...

Filed your taxes yet? I have. I know tons of people who go out every year and buy Turbo Tax or some other software to do their taxes. Then I know people who pay someone else to do them and a few who do their own and grumble and complain as they try to figure it all out. Me? My dad usually does the papers for me. This year though I decided I wanted to try e-filing, but I really had no desire to spend the money to get Turbo Tax to do it, so I visited a couple of websites. One was www.in.gov and the other was www.irs.gov both websites provide you with access to government approved and totally free e-filing capabilities. So I filed my Federal taxes last Monday afternoon. They found $400 that we hadn't found when I did my original tax forms and guess what... My refund was deposited Friday morning into my checking account. Yep, totally free and four days turn around. How can you really beat that? Now I just filed my state taxes today. We will have to see if they can 'Get R Done' as fast as the Feds... So if you ask me there isn't any better way to go than easy, fast and FREE.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Reality Bites!

Reality bites. This has been a tough week for me. A friend of mine took his own life to start my week out. I made a financial error to go to a second mistake and then today I got a ticket. Sometimes life just likes to throw you one curve ball after another. You know I bet the Cubs are use to them by now, but I’m not quiet there. Yesterday was a big day of reflection. I mean I’ve had a lot of hard life decisions to make lately. Not that this isn’t a part of every day life, but it can really leave you feeling a little down in the dumps. Thank God I have a wonderful group of friends that support me at every turn and even listen to me ramble or text as I try to rationalize decisions that I know are correct, but really don’t want to face. All in all I understand why my friend took his life. He was battling cancer for the second time, this time stage four, no reprieve. I’m not sure how I feel about it on religious grounds or even from the fact that I will miss him dearly, but I do understand what drove him there. As for the financial error, my mind has been elsewhere and it’s not like it’s something that is going to kill me. For the ticket, well yeah I deserved it so I can’t even be angry at the polite young police officer who went out of his way to make sure I knew he was just doing his job and to say thank you and please. Someone taught him manors. Something a lot of people don’t have anymore. So once again I find myself just wanting to say thank you to the group of friends that listen to me go on and on. Thanks for being my sounding board and reaffirming that the decision I made was the correct one and that the feelings I’m having are normal. I think of you as family. A family I’ve chosen and I love you all lots. But I still think the reality of this week bites.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Bandidos’ Where Everybody Knows Your Name…

Everyone remember “Cheers”? I use to love watching that show and I actually caught a couple of reruns this past weekend. As I was watching I couldn’t help but laugh as I made a mental reference in my mind to Norm (The beer loving guy that everyone called out his name when he entered the bar.) and my friend Tom. When I think of Bandidos’ NORTHCREST, I think of Tom. I could easily see a sitcom around the bar there to and for the most part everyone who goes to this Bandidos’ knows Tom. Tom is the General Manager over there and from what I can tell a lot of the clientele in that store comes there just for his friendly smile and conversation. I like to drag my friends out there for a little friendly conversation of my own. So this weekend as I was pondering, “What do you do when you have a four day weekend?” I started off right away with a trip to Bandidos to relax and enjoy the atmosphere, the wonderful chips and salsa and of course $5 pitchers of Margarita’s. It doesn’t hurt that I once worked there and have extremely found memories, but even if I hadn’t I like the atmosphere, the food and the staff. So as I stated on Friday my friends Joe, Brad & Vincent all took up residence in the bar for a couple of hours laughing and having a good time. I highly recommend it and will gladly join anyone there who wants to go whenever I am not at work. Just give me a shout out and I’ll be on my way. For the most part the staff there pretty much knows my name, meaning I may have been there more than I should have at this point. So why not go where everybody knows my name? Head on out to a Bandidos near you soon, but if you don’t go to the NORTHCREST one you’re really missing out.