Sunday, February 28, 2010

Plane, plane, go away

Cheap thrills on a rainy Sunday - hanging around Scottsdale Airport and watching all the big wigs in town for The Open get in their jets and take off. Shawn, Mr. Knowitall, described all the planes, all the wings, all the rules, all the engines, all the heights and speeds and number of seats. I didn't want to ask a stupid question, so I just wondered to myself how long before take-off the pilot needed to stop drinking coffee so they can make it home without pulling over.

International Women's Day

Every year, March 8th (Shana's birthday),  is International Women's Day


Here's a favorite poem by Maya Angelou

enough money within her control to move out
and rent a place of her own,
even if she never wants to or needs to...
something perfect to wear if the employer, 
or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour.....


a youth she's content to leave behind....
a past juicy enough that she's looking forward to 
retelling it in her old age....
a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra... 
one friend who always makes her laugh.. and one who lets her cry... 


a good piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in her family....
eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems,
and a recipe for a meal,
that will make her guests feel honored...


a feeling of control over her destiny...
how to fall in love without losing herself..


how to quit a job,
break up with a lover,
and confront a friend without;
ruining the friendship....


when to try harder... and  WHEN TO WALK AWAY... 


that she can't change the length of her calves,
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..
that her childhood may not have been perfect...but it's over....


what she would and wouldn't do for love or more....
how to live alone... even if she doesn't like it...


whom she can trust,
whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...


where to go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
or a charming Inn in the woods....
when her soul needs soothing...


What she can and can't accomplish in a day...
a month...and a year...

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Big Foot

I used to be a ten and that was hard enough. Then I had Shana, my feet permanently swelled, and now I'm an eleven. That's right, eleven. So walking around Macy's today with $35 still left on a Christmas gift card that I knew I had to either spend fast or lose forever, I ventured into the shoe department. I'm not a big shopper. Malls make me kind of crazy, especially Saturday malls. And the sale rack in the shoe department on a Saturday with a thousand ladies hovering, please. But I found a shoe. One shoe. Gold straps and black bottom. Big buckle. Heel hollowed out just to make it even uglier. The only shoe in my size. But it just wasn't me. Maybe I'll go back tomorrow and take a picture. I'm sure it will still be there. I made sure my gift card was secure in my wallet and left. 

Work/Life balance

Nothing makes up for working on cold, cloudy Saturday like a walk through the great Downtown Scottsdale Farmer's Market. arizonafarmersmarkets

The place is full of cool stuff. We got some soap from a nice lady that makes it in her kitchen, then picked up some organic fruit and veggies. Yum. Keeping with the healthy, raw, flow of the day, we moseyed on down to Ra for a little sushi. Maybe work isn't so bad.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Got barstool?

Lipstick Call with the ladies. We picked up somebody new at the bar. A lady. She was alone and had some extra bar stools. Our requirement for friendship is oh so low. Did the catch up, told her our shortened life stories, she told me hers. In the online dating mode, new possibility with a guy that works at Casino Arizona, don't sleep with anybody until at least the fifth date, went to see It's Complicated with her ex-husband's new wife, gotta go now, on the prowl - Keirland, then Handlebar J's. Good luck, new friend. Old friends - same - kids with hormones and senioritis, moms with no hormones and ready to graduate, too - to retirement, the new trainer guy with a couple of degrees and a beard, the long lost cousins from the wrong side of the track in town, the New Lulu white pants, the Diva about to move away so she says yes, yes, yes, yes to everything - just trying to stock up. She knows we're lucky. She knows it's hard to find a good group, knows it's hard to be surrounded by empty bar stools.

Tiger Town

Tiger's here in AZ. No, he's not at the Waste Management Golf Tournament, he's at The Meadows. He's sad. He needs some help.
It's not that I'm not compassionate. It's not that I don't believe in therapy. I just think that maybe he should get divorced, live the single life, get some new sponsors and start playing golf again.

Soccer Mom

Empty Nesthood is hard. There's a quiet around that you just never get used to. I miss the loud. I miss the cheering, the screaming, the rah rahing on the sidelines. I miss the hundreds of soccer games, softball games, theater performances, ballet recitals and gymnastics meets. I miss the hours and hours spent sitting in the stands with the other parents, on the bleachers, on the ground, standing in the back, hiding backstage watching Shana do her thing. There were all of those leave work early days for afternoons at the field, gathering the team at Subway Saturday mornings after practice, taking the make-up off and undoing the bun after the show and on and on. These days all I get is a few co-ed softball games per season, more if Shana makes the playoffs. Next up, Sunday in Tucson. So...four hours in a car for an hour long game?
I-10 here I come.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bonecrushers 16 Swingers 8

Go Bonecrushers!!!
Captain Shana led her team to a decisive victory! She totally took charge - coordinated new positions due to short staff, juggled  players, moving them in and out, adjusting according to their strengths and the other team's weaknesses and encouraged them every step of the way.
Captain Bonecrusher
Shawn and I cheered our you-know-whats off for the entire game, even giving some applause to the Swingers (once we were safely in there's no way you can beat us now land)

Resting before the game.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Spiked - DBG

Music, Margaritas, March - what's not to love.
Check out for discount tickets

Mix, mingle and marvel at the Desert Botanical Garden by sunset. The Garden popular Thursday night social event returns, featuring the sculptures of Allan Houser, one of the best-known and celebrated American Indian artists of the 20th century. Each evening will showcase a different Houser sculpture in one of the garden's unique venues. Spiked! includes Garden admission, hors d'oeuvres and entertainment. A creative cocktail will be available for purchase each evening at the cash bar. Advance ticket purchase is recommended. Limited parking is available; please carpool. Must be 21 or older to attend and must show proper identification to be admitted. No exceptions. Children will not be admitted, even if a parent or guardian is present. Programming is subject to change.

He said, she said

This week's writing class assignment - "Dialogue" - go somewhere and eavesdrop on somebody's conversation. Write it down. Three hundred words. Hhmmm...where should I go?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Blogging seems to be a lot like online dating. Everyone has a little profile. Here's where I went to school. Here's where I work. Here are my cute kids and my nice hubby. Here's something pithy I just thought about. Here's some of the fun stuff I did. 5' something, 100-something pounds (in the Photoshopped pic), just looking for some winks, some clicks, some comments, some followers. But why? I never wrote in a diary for more than a week, but the blog has gone on for a few years now. I can look back and see stuff I am sure would have been long forgotten. But it's only the good stuff, isn't it? Is that ok? Looking for a long-term relationship. Nonsmoker. Social drinker. Put on a happy face. Go to Publish Post. Click.

Out of the Bottle

Thinking out of the bottle. Browsing with a friend at the very cool Anthropologie and spotted this. Plastic water bottles. Tops. Bottoms. All cut up and painted and blooming. Blooming. Now I feel a tiny bit less guilty for all of those bottles I threw into the recycling container.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Shana the Tortoise

I am so turtley proud of Shana! She was back on stage starring as The Tortoise in The Tortoise and the Hare (she wins) at La Encantada this weekend. She's got the long, low, drawn-out voice down pat, she moves so slooowly, talks out to the rapt kids in the audience and even encourages The Hare. She cracks me up.

Walking with the Dinosaurs

Watch out! The dinosaurs are back! Shawn, Shana, Jordan and I got out alive, but just barely. The Tucson arena was transformed into prehistoric times. We went back millions of years and watched as some incredible animals walked right in front of us. My jaw was hanging open the whole time. It was like being at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History and watching all of those guys get down off their exhibits and start walking around. The animatronic life-sized dinosaurs were truly life-like. They walked, moved, ate, fought, flew, played and you could even see them breathing. We went through different time periods and different species as they evolved. It's difficult to imagine, check out the web site. But be careful!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Movie Madness - Shutter Island

Oh, Leo. He's so good that I even stayed through the entire film. Through the weird, overly spooky, overly loud music. Through the totally fake backgrounds. Through the long, what is the point again plot? And then to the end, when finally it all came together and made sense and actually surprised me.

Roller Girl

What a bout! Who needs the Olympics? We had a front row seat as the black fishnet stockinged, purple tu-tued Brawlerinas took on the tubed socked, short, short baseball skirted Bad News Beaters. Shawn's patient, usually the lovely Alicia, transformed into Jessie Dahmer as a Blocker on the Beaters team. She presented Shawn with a baseball autographed by the team, including Jugs Bunny, Dazed and Confused, Sigmond Droid and the coach, Poka Hi Ness. The girls roller skated, brawled, taunted and whipped it around and around the track for a great game as we cheered them on for a totally out of our bubble, definitely one for the memory books, dash experience.

After-bout din din at the Yard House. A little ale, yummy food, the Grand Prix in Montreal to the Grand Slam at Denny's during free breakfast days - those older folks just drop like flies off the bar stools. Then Superman Shawn, used to patching up Alicia (uh, Jessie) after her rough bouts spotted a waiter go down in the darkness with his x-ray vision, donned his cape, flying through the air with the greatest of ease (well, after Carla moved) to patch up yet another life, adding even more excitement to our never boring lives.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Go USA!!

I'm a day behind. I woke up to this photo and I can't wait to see this guy in Olympic action. It started with the opening ceremonies. I had something to do that night, so I DVR'd it. When I sat down the next day to watch it, I was fast forwarding through most of it. First of all, the commercials. Yeah, some of them are good, not Superbowl good, but good. But it seems like NBC is trying to pay for the entire two years of broadcasting until the next Olympics in just a couple of weeks. So last night I watched Vonn win the downhill skiing Gold medal. It was so exciting. She looked like she was even favoring one leg most of the time since her shin was hurting. She cried at the end. I cried at the end. Shawn gave me one of those looks. But since I'm a day behind, I knew that she was going to win. Same with Shaun White. It makes watching so much easier. I can sit back and relax and know that they're not going to fall. A perfect world.

Howl at the Moon

Howl at the Moon (the world's greatest rock 'n roll dueling piano show). Free admission, free appetizers, first two drinks only $1!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Look It Up

"Look it up," my Dad would always say whenever Amy or I asked him something. It was his attempt to teach us, get us to think for ourselves, be productive, earn some A's (and a few B's for me). The always by the book, reasonable, wet birds don't fly at night, life isn't fair attorney took issue with my handing out standing ovations too freely. They should be reserved. I rethought my stance. Reviewed my blog. Realized that I may have overstated the frequency and understated the level of quality needed for my two-legged exuberence. I explained that it's not every time and I really do need to thoroughly enjoy the performance. He (and Webster's) think that they should be done on special occasions to show approval after extraordinary performances of particularly high acclaim, a special honor, save it for the A+'s only.

Looks good on paper and in theory. You don't want to be handing out A's to the B crowd, now do you? Well, speaking as a sometimes B crowder, glass is half full, easily impressed and just happy to be out enthusiastic audience member, my bar is lower. Give me a nice solid B show, throw in an A for effort and I'll be the first one up.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Book Club - Lit, Very Valentine

Lit by Mary Karr and an extra treat for my lovely Valentines -Very Valentine by Adriana Trigiani
Surrounded by Whoppers, Milk Duds and popcorn, we snuggled on my couch for a viewing of the Drew Barrymore flick, Whip It, to prepare ourselves for our upcoming trip to the Roller Derby. Good movie, amazing cast, incredible skating! I still have no idea what the rules are, but I learned what a Whip It is.

For the double feature, we took the party to the living room for some Chinese food, wine and book club. Nobody read the book(s). Well, one person besides me read the book(s). We're a pathetic bunch! A drinking club with a reading problem says it all. We reviewed - the kids turning into real people and maybe we did a good job after all, some kids still finding their way, the fabulous C-bi vintage top, the manager on leave, the Vegas getaway, Bo (remember him?), 
the back on, the pre-menopausal rolling over one morning and thinking "You're still here?, the peek-a-boo pumps, the new rental - 1000 sq ft house on stilts overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge (here we come) and more, more, more, even Shawn showed up after dealing with crazy ladies like us all day long and joined us on the couch for a visit with the last-to-leavers. Next up - St. Patty's Day at Ronnie's. And the book? American by Purpose by Craig Ferguson. Better get started...


Well, when you look at it like that...

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Standing Ovation

And the crowd went wild! I love to start a standing ovation. People may look at you at first like you're strange, but after a minute or so when the rest of the place stands up, you feel like you can take the credit. It's really fun if you're in the front. I've been up close at Gammage with Shana a few times and it was like we started the wave. Last night at the opera we were up close and I hauled Shawn to his feet with me. I could just feel the guy next to me thinking, oh, great, here we go, but pretty soon, the whole place was up. It's even fun at the smaller places, like the Phoenix Little Theatre where we've been hanging out a lot lately (thanks to The performance doesn't even have to be the greatest ever, just even ok is good enough. You have to stand up eventually anyway, right? So why not give the hard working actors a little love? Come on, up, up, up.

Sophie Sullivan

Sophie Only Seems Sad

I was a little scared when I first saw her. Weird colors. Weird hair. Droopy eye. Giraffe neck. But after awhile I took a new look. I stepped back. The colors that I usually hate somehow started to work, they made sense, even became beautiful. Then I sort of covered up her forehead and saw my sister around the eyes, mouth. I could never find a picture of Amy that looks like Sophie, but if I asked somebody to paint a picture of her, I would want it to capture that. Then I had a nice talk with the artist Such a nice guy. He recently went through whatever it is people go through when they hit 50 and stopped doing things for everybody else, stopped painting things just to match the sofa, started to paint outside the lines. I can appreciate that. I looked at Sophie again. I have bad hair days. My right eye droops a bit, too. Nice guy, Brad, brought Sophie over to my house for a little visit to see if she liked the place. I moved her around, to this wall and that. We have mostly modern, pretty abstract art, nothing like this. No faces to stare at us. Too creepy.  But instead of creeping me out, she seems to put a new spin on the place. Thanks, Sophie.

Obama's Day

It may be just another three day weekend for some people, but Mr. Pres., please, after you sleep in and play some hoops and relax a bit, please, think back to when we first met. You had so many great ideas. You were going to fix Washington, you were going to bring the reds and blues back together again, you were going to end the wars in the Middle East, you were going to reform health care, you were going to tell the big banks and the insurance companies and the pharmaceutical companies where to shove it. I know you've been trying and I know you were left the biggest mess in history to clean up, but I thought you were Superman. Come on. Please. You've got the whole day today.

Movie Madness - That Evening Sun

Hal Holbrook was great. Beautiful, poignant story about life, family.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

2007 Baltic Sea Cruise!

All dressed up with Shawn, Shana and BFF Megan

Nana and Papa are taking a Baltic Sea cruise like we did a few years ago and I realized I never made an album. And it was pre-blog. So I unearthed some old emails I sent back home and here goes.

We are on the ship and having a fabulous time! We fell asleep in Chicago and woke up in London. Our coach drove us through the beautiful English countryside past little cottages surrounded by acres and acres of lavender - not a bad way to spend the morning! Our ship is gorgeous, the cabins great, food's delicious and the water is magnificent! We are still learning our way around.
Looking down into the center of the ship
Tonight is our first Formal Night, so watch out boys!! Shana and Megan have made some new friends with their own ilk at the disco called Fuel. Megan and I went to a yoga class this morning. The ship was rocking a little so I couldn't hold my tree pose for very long (my first official excuse!). We'll be in Oslo tomorrow.
Three thousand people and I've got the place to myself

Time for bed.
I'll check back later.

Sea Day 1

The sun goes down late, like after 10, once we get to Russia, it won't go down at all

Wow - what a day! We ran around all afternoon, did a little napping and socializing, even dragged the girls to a LECTURE on our upcoming ports (poor kids), then got dressed and had a great dinner overlooking the sea - we even spotted some land off in the distance.
Oh, the joy - love seeing them read!
We had an amazing sunset at 10:30pm (somewhat clouded by tequilla and cigar smoke), but one of the prettiest I've ever seen. Did I mention that a lovely man said that Megan and I looked like sisters!
On the ship, rockclimbing
We need to get up pretty eary since we are heading through the Oslo fjords around 6am. We have a half day tour in the morning, then Shawn is in charge of the rest of the day. He has fond memories of his time in Oslo during his Navy days.

Until tomorrow...


Oslo is a wonderful city full of history, incredible architecture and amazingly beautiful people! We awoke early and watched the fjords pass by from our balconies as we pulled in to port. We took a tour of the city by coach then went to the Olympic ski jump site and museum.
 Norway is famous for the height of their ski jumps and the distance the skiers achieve. The girls thought that they would be cool and climbed all the way to the top.
 Their legs were shaking for a few hours! We went to a stunning sculpture park named after the artist Vigeland. The city gave him a park and allowed him to create a masterpiece for over forty years.
There are sculptures of people in all stages of life interacting in so many ways - it really was magnificent. We then left the tour and ventured out on our own to a very hip part of town for lunch. We tried to blend in with the locals (I was banned from reading my Fodors book) and then took a leisurely walk back to the ship. the weather has been ideal - sunny and cool, with a little rain today. We are loving it! I think that we have the lay of the ship now and seem to easily find each other. There are lots of secret little places as well as our favorite 12 story glass elevators overlooking the ocean. We'll be in Copenhagen tomorrow.


With Hans Christian Anderson's The Little Mermaid

Two cool chicks in Denmark

At the Ice House for a little vodka - no drinking age here
Having a ball

Sometimes people get upset with my tourguiding so I found a new friend