Sunday, May 30, 2010


Hockey will always be my favorite sport, but I am quickly becoming more than a little fond of baseball.  As a kid, I used to watch baseball, as well as hockey.  After coming back to sports, I started watching baseball a short time after reconnecting with hockey.  It is a good pastime during the hockey off-season.

Many people think that baseball is a very boring game.  I, however, think it is a great game for summer--and describes summer perfectly.  It is laid-back and slow with periodic moments of frenzied activity--just exactly like the season.  Sitting and socializing while in the stands, watching the field whenever something is happening, is a great activity for a summer evening.  I only wish I could be closer to Detroit so that I could get to a game or three.

For some reason, the rules and nuances of baseball aren't coming to me.  Hockey came so easy for me--I can see penalties and call the different shots pretty well.  With baseball, I want everything to be as simple as it was when I was a child:  the ball is thrown, someone swings, it is either a hit or a strike, and that's about it.  But I haven't actively tried to learn anymore about the game, either.  I just like being very passive about the game--after all, it IS summer, so I don't want to strain myself.  ;)

One thing that absolutely drives me crazy about baseball is the fact that the players touch themselves so much.  Every time I see that, I can only think "If your equipment isn't fitting well enough that you constantly need to adjust, please find some that fits!"  :D  This is something that you just don't see in hockey--but I guess it would be hard to 'adjust' with the amount of padding that hockey players wear.  Hockey players spit and blow their noses--and that is enough to make me cringe.  And, I don't watch any other sports, so I don't know if it happens elsewhere.  Maybe it's a female thing, but I don't need to see that.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Like Mother, Like Daughter

I believe--and I MAY be wrong--that The Oldest doesn't especially care to take after me.  I tease her often that she's 'more like me than she thinks' and she doesn't say too much.  It isn't a wonder that she WOULD be like me in many ways--after all, I DID raise her.

The other night, we were talking, and the new movie (remake) 'Karate Kid' came up in the conversation.  She very adamantly said how she was boycotting the movie--"it is an abomination to the memory of the original."  I really had to laugh because I boycotted 'Titanic' when it came out.  (I'm not sure why, but I think it had to do with my dislike of the director--and probably had a lot to do with the hype surrounding it.)  As if TWO people in this world boycotting anything makes a bit of difference.  But, we both have done this over and over again, for different reasons.  We did have to laugh--we ARE more alike than either one of us wants to admit.

New Toys

In the last month I have bought myself a couple of new toys/tech gadgets.  I guess neither one was REALLY needed, but they were good upgrades to what I already had.

One day I was in our upstairs room and realized that the clock radio/CD player had died.  While I don't spend a lot of time up there, I do appreciate having a clock/radio/CD player whenever I AM there.  I had already begun thinking about upgrading my clock radio in our bedroom, so this was a good time to do so.  Once again, I did an enormous amount of research--really, the OCD is getting out of control--and decided on getting something that I can hook my music player to.  I finally decided on an iHome.

This has wound up being one of the best clock radios I have ever had!  It has TWO alarms and a display that can be seen across the room--even WITHOUT glasses--AND has the day/date on it.  The display also has varying degrees of brightness, for those who need darker surroundings to sleep.  But the best part of this is the sound--I, personally, find it pretty amazing.  My last bedroom radio was a Sony and it never sounded nearly as good as the iHome does.  I DO wish it wasn't made specifically for the iPod because there is a slot on the top that is completely useless for me.  I can hook up my non-iPod to it, which was one of the reasons I chose it in the first place.

My second purchase was a new camera.  I just bought a camera before we went to Vegas the other year, but it is quite large--about the size of a 35mm.  I felt as if I needed something tiny that I could put in my pocket whenever I left the house.  That led me to the Nikon Coolpix S4000.

This is one of the newest offerings from Nikon and it is AMAZING!  (It didn't hurt, at all, that I got a fantastic deal on a kit--which I bought for $50 less than the MSRP for the camera ALONE!)  It's 12 megapixel, 4X wide-angel zoom lens, and the LCD is a touch screen.  It is so thin that I will have NO problem putting it in the pocket of my jeans.  I am loving it.

Now, I guess I shouldn't have made the purchases right now, with my anniversary coming up, but that really doesn't matter.  I believe I know what my gift will be this year, but will wait until I actually have it in my possession before talking about it.  This will give you a reason to come back time and again to read the big announcement.  ;)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Start The Weekend With A Laugh

From Postcards From Yo Momma:

Mom: You need to schedule a gynecology checkup.  I’m sure you can find a woman gynecologist where you live if you’d prefer one.
Me: Well, the way I see it, it’s like that joke; would you go to a mechanic who had never owned a car?
Mom: Yeah, but he’s ridden in one.

Here's hoping your weekend is full of laughs!  Have a good one.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Strangely Wal Mart

We all know that strange things can be found at Walmart--go here to see some of the strangest--but in China you can find things that we would NEVER see here in the US.  Now, this doesn't mean these things are BAD, per se, just different and strange in our way of thinking.  I don't know of anyplace in the US where you will find crocodiles or dried reptiles sold in a Walmart.  But then again, I COULD be wrong.  Here is an article titled 16 Items They Only Sell At Chinese Walmarts.  After you click the link, come back and discuss.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Shopping Advice

I may have posted this once before, but it bears repeating.

If you look at a pair of pants and have to say "But with the right top...," you probably shouldn't buy the pants.  :D

A Bit Strange

I don't hide my pride over my Finnish heritage at all--and I probably show TOO much pride in being a Finn.  So be it.  While the Finns have done much for me to be proud of, as in any culture, there are some strange things happening as well.  And here we go.

Many places around the world have sports that are different than what we follow here in the US.  And some of them are a bit odd.  Finland happens to have two of the stranger sports.


The sport of wife carrying started in Finland and this is where the world championships are held in the month of July.  Men race an obstacle course while carrying their spouses/significant others and the first to reach the end is the winner.  The grand prize?  The woman's weight in beer.  Read more about it here

I had to laugh at this one.  I told The Oldest that, not only couldn't K and I WIN this, he wouldn't even be able to pick me up to attempt carrying me.  The Oldest said HER husband wouldn't even be able to run the obstacle course WITHOUT carrying her!  :)  I guess all four of us need to get into shape.


One of the best parts about being a Finn is the sauna.  Now, I have regularly been in saunas where the temperature is in the 175*+ range, but I DON'T do extreme sauna-ing and I don't know anyone who does.  But in Finland, they have the sauna world championships--and I would think that ONLY true Finns could come close to winning.  (However, there HAVE been non-Finnish women who have won.)

To begin, the temp in the sauna starts at 230*.  Then the contestants go in and sit. Every 30 seconds, water is sprayed on the hot rocks, which causes steam.  And the contestants try to wait out all others, in order to become the winner.  The championships have been going on for 10 or so years, they are nationally televised, and no one BUT a Finn (in the men's competition) has ever won.  And ambulances are at the ready, for those who literally bake to the point of blistering.  Frankly, I think anyone who tries this is more than a little crazy, but whatever floats your boat, I guess.  For more on this, go here to read an excerpt from Rick Reilly's (a national sportswriter) book, in which he describes his attempt at this contest.  (A VERY good read, by the way.)  I STILL cannot believe anyone who is not used to a Finnish sauna would actually attempt doing anything this stupid!

As I said, I probably never have been in a sauna hotter than 200*.  I prefer a temp of no more than 150*--and even THAT can be too hot if you add steam.  When the temp in the sauna is very, very hot, throwing water on the rocks and creating steam can literally take your breath away.  For anyone familiar with the practice, a wet washcloth placed over the mouth can help breathing.  While you feel rejuvenated and cleansed beyond anything you have ever experienced, it isn't something I did on a regular basis.  I liked the long, slow sweating process of sitting in a lower temp.  It is beyond me how anyone can sit in a sauna that is 230* or hotter.  That is crazy.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

You Would Think You Could Trust McDonald's, At Least

Even though it probably won't ever happen, I have had thoughts and dreams of traveling the world.  However, one of the big problems with that is my finickiness when it comes to the food I eat.  Actually, it has more to do with foods I WON'T eat.  I am not an adventurous person when it comes to food.  I like what I like and it takes a lot to get me to try something new.  K has gotten perturbed with me on more than one occasion because I order the same things at the same restaurants when we go out.  But, when I go out to eat, I'm usually hungry, so I want to order something that I KNOW I will eat and like.  Period.  So shoot me.

McDonald's has a presence all over the world.  Actually, there are McDonald's in about 124 countries around the world--and there are more than 31,000 individual restaurants.  I always figured that if I traveled, I would have at least ONE restaurant with food that I would eat.  Not so fast.  While I'm sure the same things are served in all McDonald's, there definitely are some strange things served in other parts of the world.  Ah, beer anyone?  Germany serves that.  How about rice and beans?  Costa Rica is where you will find that.  To find out more strange McDonald's menu items, go here to read the rest of the story. 

So, I can't travel and stay in my own little protected shell as I thought I could.  I just might have to stay closer to home.  But then, I LIKE it here in my own little world.  :D

(Come back soon for a different look at Wal-Mart!)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Okay, This Is Creepy

I'm not sure who actually decided that clowns should be marketed for kids, but I think it's time that this practice stops.  Most clowns are NOT kid-friendly--actually, they are rather creepy and scary.  And for anyone who ever saw the movie 'It,' then they are REALLY scary!  This is why this story just baffles the hell out of me.

mental_floss posted a story of 'Evil Clown.'  Evil Clown can be hired by parents to stalk and threaten kids for the week leading up to their birthdays and, at some time during the seven days, smash a birthday cake in the kid's face.  If the kid avoids the cake-smash, it is given to him/her as a birthday gift.  (The entire story, along with a picture, can be read here.)  And this is supposed to be fun, because "most kids absolutely love being scared senseless."

I will have to take exception to the previous quote.  I don't know about you, but I never would consider being stalked, being sent threatening emails/texts, receiving prank phone calls, and having traps set in my mailbox as fun.  And I'M an adult!  I can't imagine what a kid would think if these things were happening to him.  I would imagine psychologists would think this is a great idea because there are going to be MANY kids needing therapy if this catches on.  Good grief--the things people think of.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Today turned out to be a 100% 'me day'--and I loved every minute of it.  It started out with a mani/pedi, then I had my hair colored and cut.  I came home and took a nap and then ordered pizza for dinner.  Now I'm just sitting and surfing the interweb while listening to a playoff game.  I think today was the PERFECT day.

Tomorrow we are doing a day-run down south.  We normally spend the night, but our friends are busy this weekend so we decided to wait till next month to go for the night.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I will find all of the things I want to buy.  A day of retail therapy after a perfect 'me day'--I'm one lucky woman.  :)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I MUST know how this happened. 

The bathroom is located in the middle of the first floor of our house.  It has no windows, but does have a ceiling fan that is ducted through the attic to the outside.  I just went to use the facility, lifted the lid and there, floating and drowning in the water, was a big-ass bumblebee.  Where the hell did it come from?  It wasn't anywhere that I saw when I was in the bathroom an hour earlier.  I haven't been out of the house, so the doors weren't open for it to fly in.  We have screens on the two windows I have open.  So, again I ask:  Where the hell did it come from?

And my panic attacks shall start NOW!

Not Always Right

This cracked me up!  :D

(A customer who has just made a purchase comes back into our store asking for help; she’s locked her keys in her car. I go out to try and help.)
Me: “Ma’am, your window is open.”
Customer: “What?”
Me: “Your window. It’s open.”
(The customer reaches in and gets her keys, opens the door, rolls up the window, locks the car, throws the keys back inside, and closes the door.)
Me: “Um…”
Customer: “I know! I know! It’s just that I already called my husband to bring the second set! He’d have given me h*** if he saw the window was open!”

--via Not always Right

Police Log

--10:20 PM, juveniles trying to push over a port-a-john, port-a-john stood back up
I can only think of "Weebles wobble but they don't fall down."  This just paints quite a mind picture for me.  :D

--5:53 AM, vehicle burning in parking lot, vehicle gone upon arrival
I really have nothing.  I can't imagine how a burning vehicle managed to be 'gone upon arrival.'

Finished A Project

I'm trying to get some of my projects done and manged to get one more out of my house.  For Mother's Day, I had planned on making a knitting needle holder for The Mother, but I never got around to it.  The other day I decided I had to get it done and here it is:

This is the outside.

Here is what it looks like on the inside.  The striped piece at the top is a guard which will keep the needles from falling out.  The red patterned material is an 8" deep pocket for long knitting needles.  The blue patterned fabric is a short pocket for crochet hooks, scissors, rulers, and other paraphernalia.  A lot of stuff can be stored in this thing.

And here is what it looks like all rolled up.

The Mother called today--she got it in the mail--and was quite pleased.  What more can I ask for, right?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Yes, Sir, That's My Baby

We love our kids--we wouldn't have had them otherwise.  Thing is, kids are work and they DO have the tendency to wreck things.  It is unavoidable, I guess.  And we all have stories about things our kids have ruined.  My youngest, for example, was a chewer.  She chewed EVERYTHING.  It didn't matter if it was metal (the legs on her playpen) or wood (my open, kitchen shelves) or cloth (terry towels--don't ask.)  To this day, I STILL have edges of my shelves that look as if a beaver chewed on them.  And that brings me to the reason for this post, the newest website I have found.  It is called Shit My Kids Ruined and just going through it makes me GRATEFUL that my kids are grown.  I also am grateful for how few stories I actually have, compared to some on this site.  The best part?  Most of the stories have pictures.  Go to the site NOW.  You will be amazed, amused, and everything in between.  And you just might have stories of your own to contribute.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A 'Conversation'

A little bit of background.  First, I have many 'imaginary, fake' friends that I have met through hockey blogs and Twittering about hockey.  Basically, they are a bunch of 'kids' who allow me to hang around and interact with them through the interwebs.  One of my favorite people is Tyler, a recent college graduate from lower Michigan.  He keeps me laughing for hours with the things he writes.  He is witty, often profane, and can paint hilarious pictures with words that are not to be believed.  (Sadly, I don't know if his hockey blog would be funny to non-hockey fans, though.)  He is one of my favorite people on the Web.

A new (?) site on the Web is called  It seems to be a cross between Twitter (you can link your Twitter account to it) and Facebook.  Once you have signed up for an account, people can ask you questions and you answer them.  Simple as that.  For me to have an account, not so interesting.  For someone like Tyler to have one, lots of fun.  And that is where our conversation comes in.

My question to Tyler was this:
Being as tall as you are, do you even realize that people my size (5'0") exist? Do you even SEE us? ;)  (He is at least 6'4" tall.)

His answer:
Oh no -- my grandma figured out how to use a computer. And connect to the nearest wireless network, open a browser, track me down even though I've left scarce clues as to who I actually am in real life, discover formspring when even 24 hours ago I would've guessed that it's a mattress company, and pose this question.

Hi grandma, I see you down there!

Then, we progressed from there onto Twitter.

Me:  By the way, I asked the height question. And I very well MAY be as old as grandma. :D
Tyler:  If u are 80 and a fully functioning Internet person - I think we should get married today. I don't know why. I don't question love.

The kid cracks me up.  I wish I was as quick-minded as some of the people I interact with.  :D

**By the way, if you look over here <------- you will see that I now have a formspring account.  If you have questions, ask away.**

Some More Updating

I am celebrating a one-year AND a two-year anniversary around this time.  So, I thought I would mark the anniversaries with updates.


Almost two years ago, I had LASIK surgery to correct a VERY bad problem with near-sightedness.  And I'm still not unhappy that I did it.  Granted, there ARE things that I'm not happy about--mostly having almost NO ability to focus on things that are close.  (It makes doing a GREAT manicure next to impossible.)   There is a certain range that, even with reading glasses, I can't get in full focus.  But, I'm not too upset about it.  The freedom from regular glasses is WONDERFUL.  I almost have forgotten what it is like to have to wear glasses to see. 

I would do the surgery again in a heartbeat.  It is a wonderful thing.  However, I think I would be more inclined to have the surgery that corrects for BOTH near- AND far-sightedness.  I was too worried about having THE BEST distance vision, so I opted for the single correction.  Now, I wonder if I made the right decision.  I'm not sure how long--if EVER--it would have taken me to get used to having each eye being dominant for different usage.  I was very afraid that I would feel nauseous and not be able to get used to the correction.  (They showed me what it would be like--with special glasses--if they did the double correction.  I didn't like the feeling.)  

The most fun I'm having after the surgery is buying reading glasses and sunglasses.  After years and years of putting the same glasses on my face day after day, it is great to be able to wear new glasses whenever I want--and be able to afford them.  Glasses as a fashion accessory:  a very new concept for me.


A little over a year ago I made the decision to go on Enbrel for my psoriasis.  This was a decision that I didn't make quickly--actually I had been thinking about it for years.  The side effects--mainly the fact that the immune system can be compromised--was the big reason why I didn't start on it sooner.  However, I was flaring very badly and decided I had just had enough, so I began Enbrel.  And so far, so good.  

I had moderate to severe psoriasis.  At least 5% of my body was covered--and it could have been 10% or more.  Of course, most of the psoriasis lesions couldn't be seen by most people.  My scalp was bad, as well as my fingernails.  I had lesions covering a good amount of my stomach, back, elbows, and areas of my legs.  After a year, I am almost in complete remission.  My scalp is completely clear, my stomach and back are clear, and my fingernails are beginning to heal.  I have a few small spots on my elbows and knees, but the combined areas of my skin that are compromised today makes up 1%* or less of my body.  I think I can say that Enbrel has been a resounding success for me.

As for side effects.  Well, there are a few.  I still have injection-site reactions.  Almost every time I give myself an injection, I get a red, warm area around where the needle went in.  For the most part, everything is back to normal within a day, so this isn't a problem for me. The only other 'side effect' is when I have to quit my injections when I get an infection--such as when I got the swine flu in November.  I didn't have a flare while I was off of the drug for the two weeks, but I don't like taking the chance.  But, I have been lucky and haven't had an increase in infections like some people have had.

I still don't know what will happen to me now that this health care bill is in place.  So far, we still have our same prescription insurance, but I haven't seen the new contract and don't know if there are changes coming up in the next year or so.  If I have to pay full-price for the Enbrel, I will have to go off of it--there just is no way we can afford $20,000  a year so that I can have clear skin.  But, I'm trying to not think about it--and just enjoy what I am experiencing right now.

*The palm of the hand equals 1% of the skin.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Baby Watch--Newest Edition

The Oldest went to see the specialist today and was told she is having another girl.  So, that will be SIX girls and one boy in the house.  Good grief.

From The WAY TMI File

If you have ever had the joy(?) of using an authentic, old-fashioned outhouse, then you know there is a certain, unmistakable odor associated with them.  I guess it probably isn't a great thing if your bathroom has that same odor after you use it, right?  :D

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I'll Be Back

Right now I'm in a very deep stage of depression.  The Wings lost tonight and they are down 3-0 in a best of seven series.  So, that means only one more loss and the season is done.  By this time next week, I will be done with hockey--more likely than not for the rest of the playoffs.  I won't--and can't--get into what has happened.  Just suffice it to say that I am not in the best of moods.

And this had to happen today of all days:  I have to go and see The Mother tomorrow for my once-a-year visit.  What more can I say?  I will be back--maybe not tomorrow, but it should be soon.  Wish me luck.

And Another Police Log

--1:53 PM, woman reported group of males stole a case of beer from her at around 1:15 AM, while she was walking

How many questions does this raise?  Here we go.

Why did it take her 12 hours to report this incident?  Was she so drunk that she had to sleep it off, first?  Why was she walking at 1:15 AM--while carrying a case of beer?  And was the case full when she was carrying it--or had she indulged while she was walking?  So many unanswered questions--as usual when it comes to the police logs.

Police Log

In our local paper yesterday, almost half of the front page was devoted to the story of the black bear which wandered into town.  It was a 150-pound male, and he was tranquilized and brought out of the city.  Along with the story were three pictures, so this was big news.  (I really don't know why they made such a big deal about it, because we get at least one bear in town EVERY summer.)  And here is the police log about this incident:

--10:45 AM, bear reported in area, tranquilized and relocated

Rather anti-climactic, isn't it?  This just proves that there really IS a "Rest of the story" behind each of the police log incidents.  ;)

Monday, May 03, 2010

They're BAAACCCKKK!!!!

...and they continue with their nightly migration back into the garage.  We have very strange people in this town.