Sunday, May 31, 2009

Adam Lambert

picture from newsday

I don't watch much TV. The TV I do watch, ask my husband, generally puts me right to sleep on the couch. However, I happened to catch Adam Lambert and his moody and moving version of Mad World on American Idol this past spring. It had a real Michael Mann feel to it that drew me right in. I was completely mesmerized by his performance. I'm not sure what it is about him. On the one hand, he seems like a a genuine guy-next-door nice guy (look beyond the clothes and makeup), yet there is an unpredictable, almost dark side to him (unrelated to his ambiguous sexuality or maybe not?). Some people have actually suggested that he is the reincarnation of Elvis with his swagger and Oh-my-God-he-looks-like-Elvis lip snarl. What's funny is that my husband and I both made that comment to one another as we watched him sing one night. My ever down-to-earth husband said, "That guy has been practicing that look in the mirror!". But what captures me, I think, is how some of his songs really move something in me. I don't like all of his songs. In fact, I don't even listen to music very much in my very busy life. But I can't get some of Adam Lambert's songs out of my head. Check out "Is Anybody Listening" from his performance in Ten Commandments. Check out or try I do think he has to learn how to control his range (and I don't know anything about music!). But, for me, letting loose for the sake of it and because he can (as I felt he did sometimes on American Idol), borders on irritating to my ears. But when he controls his voice and expresses his own, real emotion while singing, and uses those high notes in just the right spots while restraining his voice in other places......something in me responds. In the end he didn't win American Idol based on the teen vote (which makes sense with the eye liner, nail polish and edginess he brings), but who really cares about that? I await his first album.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The 11:30 Colonoscopy

Oi vey.....once you turn 50 you are supposed to have a screening for polyps in your colon. Polyps can lead to cancer so, hey, it's worth the annoyance. Although it's a great thing to do for your health and peace of mind, what a nasty procedure. When I had mine a year ago (4 years later than I should have!), I had to drink (choke down) bottles of intensely salty fluid and then glass after glass of water on the hour for many hours. My colonoscopy was at 4:30pm (never do that - you are prepping for two days!). My husband had a third colonoscopy this morning. He had to take 32 pills within a short period of time and drink enormous amounts of fluid. We were at the hospital by 7:30 for his procedure (never do that - you get up at 3:30am and visit the toilet repeatedly until you leave for the hospital at 7:00). You're exhausted and famished as you disrobe and climb onto the table. Ask for the 11:30 slot. My husband and I have figured out that's the ideal time. And, definitely go with the pills. I could barely gag down my bottles of salty liquid. He just popped piles of 3 pills every 15 minutes into his mouth. The 11:30am colonoscopy. Make your appointment right after your 50th birthday...and ask for full sedation....we both told our physician (the same one) to knock us out, do her thing and wake us up when you she was done. Final thought....what kind of physician chooses to do this for a living?

Monday, May 25, 2009


My oh my...could a flower be more beautiful? Yes, not only is it amazing to look at but it has a wonderful scent, as well :) Hope my peonies grow to look like this!

Deck Gardening

Ever good-natured and trusted deck gardening assistant, Miss Olivia. She may make little dirty paw prints all the way across our clean wooden floors but she is so much good company, I just wipe up after her :)

These are my deck garden pots. I would love a large happy garden but these will do for now. We have a pepper pot with mint in the middle tub. The other two pots have dahlias, lavender and peonies in them! Gardening in a pot is so restrained. I'm hoping that from that tight squeeze a bountiful harvest will burst forth! Caged bird idea and all :)

Ahh...tomatoes! I love fresh tomatoes...nothing like them in the world. My husband makes THE BEST fresh tomato salsa ever. Here I have several varieties. Of course, when you have tomatoes, you have to grow basil! Imagine, fragrant basil, juicy and sweet red tomatoes, soft slices of fresh mozzarella drizzled with virgin olive oil...what a summer meal....finished off, of course with a refreshing and very green mojito (using our fresh mint!).

Friday, May 22, 2009

Rush to Judgment

I have been reminded twice today to expect better of people and to not rush to judgment. Not feeling well is no excuse but may be the reason I have been impatient lately. The cleaning lady I had made arrangements with did not show up this morning. Of course, it's all about me. I am sick and I have a 2:00 showing for a condo we have hard time selling and she must just be irresponsible and trying to annoy me. I assume she just isn't showing up because it's a great beach day. Turns out she had car trouble and did call my husband and he couldn't get a hold of me. And, then, my husband left our love of a dog, Olivia, in his office vestibule so he could go golfing. I told him to remember to leave the door unlocked as I don't have a key. It is 92 degrees out when I go to pick her up. She is jumping up and down in a air-conditionedless vestibule. Windows open, water available and her pillow nearby for her. How thoughtful of him I thought. When I turned the vestibule door knob, however, it was....locked! I am not thinking pleasant and kind thoughts about my husband at this point! Why wasn't he more thoughtful, I ponder. Is he trying to make me crazy? Turns out he did, in fact, leave the door unlocked, even checked it before he left. His upper floor tenant left after him and locked the door probably thinking he was locking Olivia safe in the vestibule! All of this rushing to judgment comes when I am too busy, too sick, too caught up. I hear the message loud and clear....slow down, relax, find that balance I know is somewhere within me but apparently, just beyond my reach right now! Remember what I know of yoga, learn and remember again.

Fourth Visit?????

Always fun to look at a winter picture when it's 90 out!

Ok, I understand that a Prospective Buyer would want to come visit a condo they are considering paying good money for, twice. The third time seems excessive to me, but, I get it, you are spending a lot of money and it's your market right now. But, announcing at the third showing that you are planning on coming back on a 4th visit is outrageous. I know it's a buyer's market right now but I'm getting angry. Prospective Buyer is no fool. He knows we have to get the place "show ready" each visit. For us that means spending no less than 3 or more hours, together, scrubbing, mopping, straightening, putting every morsel of personalness in a closet, pushing one large TV into the bedroom closet and dragging a big screen TV into another (well, my husband pulls it using his belt). We also have to collapse our dog's bed (giant cage with loads of pillows) and remove any and all canine evidence, shoving it all under our bed. Today, I was and still am, sick. We have a woman who sometimes cleans our house. She was supposed to come this morning because I'm sick and we have a 2:00 showing. No message, no cleaning lady. So this morning, I cleaned for 4 hours, slowly, because I was sick. After the showing I hear from our real estate agent that Potential Buyer comes by for a few minutes, announces he has another place to look at, and runs off, stating that he will return on a fourth visit to "look at the electricals"!!!! He didn't even take time on a beautiful day to walk on the dock. Maybe, you're thinking, I should be thrilled that we even have a live PB but my real estate agent recently told me that she has had PBs in the past who look 4 times, as rude and inconsiderate as that is, and move on! I'm getting ready to talk with my husband about taking our beautiful, waterfront condo off the market! Maybe now is not the time to sell? At the very least, if we do sell to this PB, after we shake hands, get our money and give them our keys, I'm giving these **** people a piece of my mind......we need to sell but maybe not that badly I'm beginning to think!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Carb Queen

Yep, I am a carb queen. I have been trying to drop that extra 10 pounds recently. It just dogs me....10 pounds. I have also been sick the past couple of days. When I am sick I seek comfort foods...carbohydrates. I see why losing that 10 pounds is hard for me. No snack is better than multigrain corn chips with creamy hummus, whole grain bread with butter and jam, a banana, low fat ice cream sandwiches. All my food has an edge of healthiness but so many carbs! My brother is writing a book and developing a TV show on food and mood. Carbohydrates elevate your mood. So I see why it's so hard to lose weight! If I am using carbs for comfort vs. eating food for body fuel, I feel like I really need to reflect on why I am seeking so much comfort? Or maybe it's just a bad habit. I'm thinking that instead of munching on salty chips or smoothering a chunk of crusty wholegrain bread with a slab of Smart Balance when I feel the urge but am not really hungry, I should finish that colorful little button watch band I started....get comfort from being creative vs. dancing around stuffing my carb queen face!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

E-mail, e-mail, e-mail...doesn't always work!

So, e-mail doesn't always work. There have been 2 instances in my life where somebody wrote me an emotional e-mail and it was wrong of me to reply, with emotion. How easily things get misunderstood!

I have a yoga teacher buddy who, for the longest time, I assumed just wasn't resonding to my unyogalike!

Recently, as I started my sabbatical, I e-mailed all 3 elementary school principals to tell them I had begun and I was available to work in their schools. I heard back from one principal and assumed the other was busy and not interested, at that time, in what I had to offer. Two months later, my home school principal went to a all-principal meeting and this principal who never responded to my e-mail complained that she hadn't heard from me. I e-mailed her again. I heard nothing back. Recently, there was a news article about my sabbatical and the programs I have developed. Two of the schools I am in were listed in the paper. The principal who never called me called our assistant superintendent and angrily told him I had never contacted her! Her name (not really) is Carol Tulane (not a common last name). I sent both of my e-mails to her to c.tulane@my Makes sense, right? Well there used to be a Cynthia Tulane (what are the chances of that...we're not talking about Carol and Cynthia Smith here!) in our district who has been long gone. Seems Cynthia Tulane's old e-mail account may be a huge and interesting depository of Carol Tulate's wayward e-mails! So, in fact, Carol Tulane never received my e-mails and we never connected about my coming to her school to work on programs for her students who are gifted in math.

Lesson learned? If you don't hear from somebody via e-mail in a reasonable amount of time....pick up the phone! If you sense any emotion in an e-mail, pick up the phone! E-mail doesn't always work!

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Granddaughter rapping....

The moment!

My stepson graduated college today and we couldn't feel more proud of him!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

A showing!

What does an 11:30 showing, by the way, mean to us? Well, first, a frantic call is placed to a woman who can usually come help us clean at a moment's notice. She wasn't game for the kids. Hearing that, we kicked into high gear (dear husband first drank coffee, ate breakfast, drank more coffee). We spent the entire morning (when all I really wanted to do was hang out with my grand kids) cleaning, scrubbing, polishing, dusting, mopping, vacuuming. Of course, we need to do this every Saturday morning, but when you do it for a showing you become possessed. I yell to my husband, "Don't forget to clean up your clothes in the closet!" He scowls back at me. We (well, I) squirt anti-dust cleaners, floor cleaners, bathroom cleaners, window's mania for about 3 hours. When the condo finally sparkles, we flip on every light switch in our home and leave.

The strangest thing we have been told to do is to roll our TVs into the closet before each showing. We have one giant big-screen TV my husband rigged up so it cleaverly sits on rolling cart. The "cart" is actually a coffee table on wheels :) We sling each end of the cart with one of his belts and maneuver the giant screen from living room to bedroom closet, generally yelling at each other the whole way. Who lives without a TV these days I wonder as we push and pull the TV around the couch, through the kitchen, down the hall and into the closet? I know prospective buyers ask, "Where do they put the TVs?" It's like some ridiculous game. But I do see that without TVs in the living room and bedroom, the condo looks more spacious and the focal points are the square footage and the water view. Big sellers, we always hope. We learned later yesterday that our potential buyers have to buy a home in one state (so they can avoid taxes on this home) and sell a home in we'll see if they make an offer any time soon. As always, we know one day soon we will soon drive across the bridge up river and point to our condo, telling each other, "We used to live there!"

The Showing on Tobacco Road

Well, we had another showing yesterday (yippee!!) and welcomed prospective buyers to our lovely condo at 287 Tobacco Road. Hopefully they were able to look beyond our sadly untended grounds to the underlying beautify of our wonderful condo sitting on the water's edge. We pray they were able to imagine our home as it looks, here, in the spring. With fire-red azaleas and the neatly trimmed bright green grass who wouldn't want to buy this amazing condo?