Same job, different uniform.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Speaking of the Woodshed

A sign of the coming apocalypse? Pastor charged with felony for spanking son.

Read the short article (thanks Aunt Suzie) and I think you'll agree that these charges will eventually be dropped. Children who have been abused don't carry signs outside the courthouse thanking their father for spanking them.

These are scary times.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"He's not that innocent"

Words that every mother can't wait to hear - "Just so that you know, Douglas has been biting his friends in class. You know, Douglas is the oldest in the class and he will back into other kids and knock them over. He also will hit others in the class, too."

Two things. He's NOT his sister. He's the class bully.

Who knew?

Douglas, I'd like to introduce you to a little friend of mine called the wood shed.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

Not to get all "fair and balanced" on ya

But because I'm a a middle child, I like things to be even-stevens. Awhile back, Molly McGee posted some videos as part of the case against McCain. So in the spirit of balance...

(Here's a link to the ad in question: Spanish-language Obama ad)

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Friday, October 24, 2008

"I want fabulous..."

And I think I'm gonna get it.

"High School Musical 3." In theatres. Tomorrow.

Don't worry. I've already promised the almost-6-year-old that I'm taking with me that I won't scream out "I LOVE ZAC EFRON!"* in the middle of the show.

*Even though I do. I really, really do.

UPDATE: It was all I hoped it would be and more. Oh. So much more.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Birthday - Last Time - I Promise

The final installment of "why my 40th Birthday was so great!"

I loved that my VERY pregnant sister in law sat through the whole party, enduring cigarette smoke and the probably somewhat obnoxious revelry of people who were drinking things she could not. AND she videotaped and took photos.

I loved that my somewhat less pregnant, but not-far-behind-her friend also did the same!

I love that both of them are NOT pregnant now and we get to enjoy their little cherubs.

I loved that my other, pregnant sister in law (due in Jan., 2009) who has had to give up her social smoking habit for the baby still thought of me and bought me cloves, which she loves, so I could still smoke them even if she could not.

I loved that her brilliant professor {LINK} husband donned a slightly too small cowboy hat and wore it with bravado the whole evening.

I loved that everyone got into the Texas theme and wore appropriate attire – boots, hats, Wranglers, pearl snap shirts . . .

I loved that my friends who don’t really smoke (well, neither do I except socially), shared a clove with me at my party.

I loved that whenever I finished one Shiner another magically appeared!

I love that my friends who don’t even really like beer agree with me now that Shiner rocks!

I loved that the party was held in Kris and Leah’s backyard underneath the canopy of old lilac trees; that there were white lights strung from trees to house; that there were tiny colored Christmas lights strung across the wall of the garage that served as the backdrop for the “stage” where Ben and Kari sang, that the garage wall is weathered and slightly abused and looked very much like any number of venues in Austin, Texas – the place it was meant to invoke – not least The Backyard (Which, after this weekend will sadly be nothing but a memory!)where I first saw Bob Schneider

I love that their backyard is in a part of Boise called Hyde Park and that there is a Hyde Park neighborhood in Austin that looks just like it.

I loved the picnic tables covered in check tablecloths and red and blue bandannas.

I loved the little table underneath the lilac trees with the red and white checked cloth, the iced tea and lemonade in pitchers and the mason jar full of white sugar for stirring into drinks. SO Southern!

I loved the little lie that my parents cleverly duped me with as I headed out the door and noticed that they looked awfully dressed up for just coming over to watch the boys while Kelly and I had dinner together.

Here I have to pause for a moment and say how thankful I am that both of my parents were (and ARE) still around to celebrate my 40th birthday. By the time they were both 40, only my father's mother was still alive and now I realize how hard that must have been for them. They are both healthy and happy and I anticipate celebrating many more birthdays (both theirs and mine) with them. I am blessed.

I loved that when I pulled out of my driveway to go to the “dinner for two that was not“ I saw my neighbors getting into their car to come to the party and they saw me and were nervous enough that I would figure something out that they drove around our block in the opposite direction, REALLY S L O W LY in the hopes that I’d drive off and forget about them, and then I almost foiled their plan by stopping my car right in front of them on the other side of the block loop because I thought I had a flat front tire. I, of course, was clueless.

I loved that when I was driving downtown to meet my husband for “dinner” my mother in law was accidentally in front of me (I noticed her and it did pique my curiosity) and my sister in law and her husband were accidentally in back of me and saw my mother in law in front and were so sure I’d see them both and that the gig would be up that they pulled over to the side of the Connector for several minutes to wait until I was too far in front of them to notice them.

I loved that Ben was a big hit!

I loved that he and Kari thought my family and friends were some of the nicest people they’ve ever met – because they are.

I love that he wants to come back!

I loved that he and Kari were so easygoing that they stayed and talked under the trees until midnight and then drove all the way to Idaho City to camp before driving back home the next day.

I loved overhearing my girlfriends say things to their husbands, things like, “Honey, I turn 35 in three weeks, what are you doing for MY birthday?” OR “I don’t turn 40 until 2011, you have three years to plan!”

I love that you get cold when it's 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you're looking at me like I'm nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. [OOPS! Wrong quote. This post is so long that finally even I got confused . . . . . ].

I loved that even after ALL of the above, several friends got up on Saturday morning – early – and played 18 holes of GOLF with me.

Seriously. You are an amazing lot.

To those of you who tried very hard to come, but just couldn't swing it, I know you wanted to be there and you were missed by all.

Thank you everyone for a wonderful birthday that was the cherry on top of an wonderful summer.

“Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried; Grapple them unto thy soul with hoops of steel.” Hamlet, 1.3.62-3

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Saturday, October 11, 2008

August 8, 2008, Thank you! Part II

More on what I loved about my birthday party:

I loved that when Ben and Kari got up and sang, with nothing but a guitar, a couple of microphones and a speaker, in a little backyard in Boise, Idaho they sounded as good or better than they did on the CD my husband I are addicted to.

I loved that Ben sang every song of his that I love and then added in songs based on my husband’s suggestions. I loved that he covered one of my sentimental favorites, “Snowing on Raton” that I first heard sung by Texan, Robert Earl Keen, who covered it from another Texan, Townes Van Zandt and that I was listening to it that very day in the car.

I loved that Ben had on a t-shirt with a picture of Pancho Villa on a donkey that said, "Hey Gringo - Be all that you can be!" on top, and on the bottom it said, "San Antonio, TX" and that it was just a happy accident that he wore it to the party.

I love that Ben had an “opening act” and that it was my Texas sister in law who has started doing stand up comedy and that she was hilarious!

I loved that the party had a Texas theme. And it was LARGE!

I loved the specially “imported” Shiner Boch, which we can no longer get here in the Treasure Valley.

I loved that not only did we have Shiner Boch but that it was very nearly an MI5 operation getting it here – Plan A: The neighbor will make a pick-up in Nevada on his next business trip. They don’t sell it in Nevada. Plan B: The sister in law and her professor husband who are driving from Aberdeen, S.D., will stop in Twin Falls for a keg pickup. But as it turns out, you can’t buy just one keg; you have to buy EIGHT. Plan C- Crisis Level: Call my parents who happen to be driving through Jackson, Wyoming and ask them to see what they can find. And it so happens the Albertson’s in Jackson carries Shiner, so three cases were immediately transported to Meridian, Idaho where they were secretly transferred the following day to the “drop zone.”

I loved that we had brisket and that my neighbor, who now regularly wins barbecue competitions, bringing home 2nd, 1st and Grand Champion awards, smoked it.

I loved that the same neighbor, under the ruse of catering a party for friends of his wife asked me if I had any Texas bean recipes and then borrowed one of my cookbooks to make the beans that he brought to my surprise party.

I loved that my husband’s cousin made her famous cookies (Benger’s Bakery) and that Leah (also the party hostess) made her “Accidental” Brownies – so named because she accidentally used 1 ½ pounds of butter instead of 1 ½ STICKS the first time she made it. Let me just tell you, adding two extra sticks of butter to a brownie recipe is great “accident.” {Accidental Brownies Remember: Use 5 sticks of butter instead of just 3 sticks. It's SOOO worth it!}.

I loved that Leah’s husband baked me a special "red, white and blue" (raspberries, blueberries and white peaches) fruit crisp.

I loved that he knows enough about cooking to know that it was called a “crisp” and not a “cobbler.”

I loved the two t-shirts that Tracy made for me with Clint Eastwood gracing their fronts as both Dirty Harry and the Man with No Name. (Only good friends know and will cater to your still undying crush on a man who is now old enough to be your grandfather without saying “ewwww!”)

Third and FINAL enstallment of the longest post ever - Tomorrow! Same Time!

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Thursday, October 09, 2008

August 8, 2008: Thank You! Part I

I count myself in nothing else so happy
As in a soul remembering my good friends.
Richard II Act2, Scene 3

Seven weeks ago my family and friends threw me a surprise party for my 40th birthday. I am sure I can never quite put into words the wellspring of emotion I feel for each and every one of you involved in this effort but I’m going to try by telling you what I loved about my party.

Chapter 4 of Ecclesiastes bears a song of woe about what life is like when one has no comforter, is all alone and wonders, “for whom am I toiling?” But the last stanza offers this: “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up . . . if two lie down together they can keep warm . . . though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three is not quickly broken.” This is as much how I feel about all of you as I think I am talented enough to write.

All of you at various times have reflected back to me the face of God and what it is he desires from us and for us. (I could recount those ways here, but then this post would go on well past it’s already ridiculous length.) I can only hope that in the coming days, weeks, months and years I can be the wife, daughter, sister, and friend to all of you that you have been to me.

Here is what I loved about my 40th Birthday Surprise:

First, and most of all, I loved that my husband put so much time, effort, sweat, anxiety, and love into planning a party that reflected so many things I like and care about. (He was so nervous that he’d slip and say something that would give away the party and the Ben Bedford surprise that he didn’t even listen to Ben for a month leading up to the party.) I “Hilary Swanked” him late in the evening when I got up and thanked and acknowledged everyone but him. Please forgive me, Sweetie. I hope you know “that for you I’d go down swinging.”

I loved that my mother in law and Leah were long in on the whole thing and that after all the back and forth about whether or not to have a party or not, Leah finally said, “Oh screw it –she’s getting a party!”

I loved that my mother in law had the hutzpah and the talent to write a mushy, sentimental letter on my behalf to a musician 2000 miles away named Ben Bedford {Ben Bedford} and ask him if he’d consider a private gig in Idaho.

I loved that Ben came and brought his back up singer and girlfriend and sang at MY birthday party and that it was such a complete and utter surprise that even when I saw them in Leah’s backyard it did not dawn on me who they were.

Part II - Same Time Here Tomorrow.

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Laws or kings

To dispel any misunderstanding (due to my recent rants here and here) that I am some kind of dyed-in-the-wool politico, this quote most accurately sums up how I feel a month from our elections:

"How small, of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure."

~ Samuel Johnson

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Tuesday, October 07, 2008

I'm Watching the Debate

(Boy do I hate this debate format.)

Obama is talking about the surpluses we had when George W. Bush came into office. Now we have a deficit.

Yes, Bush has been a big spender. But may I remind our viewing audience that CONGRESS HAS POWER OF THE PURSE.

ADDED: Obama has just publicly stated that health care is an American right.


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Monday, October 06, 2008

Picking on Palin

I think I hate "spin" as much as the next girl. I don't get it when Governor Palin won't give a straight answer. Dodging questions is just annoying.

But it looks like we're going to pick on her like we picked on Dan Quayle. She can say or do no right, as long as she's a right-winger.

Joe Biden can make all kinds of outrageous claims (overlooked by the super sleuths at NBC's TRUTH SQUAD, da dum!) and gets away with them. Sarah Palin on the other hand stumbles and she is a fool and a hick.

The Wall Street Journal today highlights a few of Biden's foibles from last week's debate. He said the kinds of things Palin would have been smilingly crucified for.

And I love the article's byline:

Sarah Palin may not know as much about the world, but at least most of what she knows is true.

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Sunday, October 05, 2008

A poll: which video is creepier?

Watch, vote and don't eat my cookie.

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