Tuesday, July 31, 2012

See you in September

Dear Readers,
    I've decided to take a hiatus from blogging for the month of August. Nothing is wrong. Just needing to recharge the old batteries. 'Hope to see you when I return.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Who needs gazpacho...

When you can have a cold Bloody Mary with fresh garden cherry tomatoes for an appetizer?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Going for geek gold

OK, I don't mean to brag, but I just bested my personal best by 14 seconds in iPad Solitaire. I expect the Wheaties people to call any minute now.

A little bit of this, a little bit of that.

I still don't know what to make of those opening ceremonies last night. So seemingly random... so all over the place...so dark, in a way. I enjoyed Mr. Bean in "Chariots of Fire," though.
The view from my bathroom window.
It's becoming painful to drive along the highways and witness the devastation the drought has brought to our crops. I care much more about corn than I do my lawn which, as you can see above, is all but dead (or, hopefully, just dormant.) My lovely crepe myrtle, however, is in full bloom, surviving and thriving in the harsh conditions. Goal for the rest of summer:  Be more like Myrtle.
Barbara Bush aka Dixie Cup aka Tyca Queen of the Gypsies.
We are all happily surviving Dixie, our latest adopted family member who has been a Hamilton for a month now. Here she is, sitting on our window seat, as if she's been there her whole life. Her foster mother brought us her pedigree papers this week. (Our first AKC registered pooch!) Her given name: Tyca Queen of the Gypsies. Or "Gypsy," for short. Foster mom changed it to Dixie Cup, but I'm tempted to call her Barbara Bush, or "BB" for short. She just looks like Babs, don't you think? A lovely pearl collar and she's a dead ringer. (And, I say that with due respect. Mrs. Bush is a handsome dame.)
Clearly, this isn't me. It's difficult to snap your own picture when you're in this position.
I've been battling a sinus infection since Thursday, determined not to resort to antibiotics if I don't have to. I started using my Neti Pot again and in the last two days, I've added the contents of a probiotic capsule to the water each time. Seems to be working for now. Thanks, Internet.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Potty training your man

Ladies, does your guy have trouble hitting the target? Are you fed up with unsightly and odorous toilet splatter? Don't throw him to the curb! Do what they do in Amsterdam (and I don't mean smoke pot ...although, come to think of it, that might make you care less about the spillage issue.) Credit for forwarding goes to the hubs who, I'm sure, would want you to know he is quite the, er, marksman. (Sorry, 'must be the sinus medication.)
Click to enlarge.

More funny fluffy stuff

My sinuses are in too much pain (A/C overload) to post anything of substance today. Fortunately, there's this.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Les Glaces de Kusmi.... c'est magnifique!

The Kusmi people of Paris (ooh, la la) couldn't have picked a better day to send these iced tea samples to me in the mail. The bank thermometer read '105' on the way home and I was all-too ready for some non-alcoholic refreshment. I ripped open the box and perused the varieties within, including:
  • Detox a.k.a. the best-seller and Lady Gaga’s favorite (a blend of mate, premium green tea and lemongrass flavored with lemon); 
  • Be Cool (a delectable, caffeine-free blend of verbena, rosehip seeds, liquorice and peppermint); and 
  • Boost (a unique blend of mate, green tea and spices). 
Ultimately, I chose the Strawberry Green (because I liked the package colors) and followed the 'Easy Iced Tea' directions on the box: Infuse two sachets of Kusmi Tea in one cup of simmering water for three to four minutes. Pour the tea into a four-cup pitcher filled three-fourths with ice and mix well.
Très rafraîchissant!! And, so much better than yet another glass of water. For where to buy this elegant tea - great for gift-giving - click here.  If you're not in LA, SF or NYC, go here and purchase online. Warning: Such deliciousness doesn't come cheaply.

Embracing my spots. It's a process.

With the arrival of these complimentary review samples of Boom! by Cindy Joseph and considering our triple-digit heat wave, I have adjusted my attitude toward makeup to "less is more." Not "use more to look like you need less" but, really, use less, particularly less of all the concealers and foundations I've used for years to cover up my, er, freckles. "The Damn Spots" have been more anxiety-causing to me - aging-wise - than gray hair, wrinkles and sagging bits combined. In my TV days, I could get away with heavy (stage) makeup which would melt after five minutes in the summer heat. (There's not a white shirt I had that survived those years.) Not anymore. Not in these temperatures. So for the last week, I've used only a dusting of mineral makeup and Boom! "color" stick, a sheer, universal color that works on cheeks, lips, neck and forehead. "The Damn Spots" are definitely more obvious, but I'm trying very hard to love them.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

You know you're over the hill when....

Your baby brother, who is six years your junior, turns 50. Happy birthday, little bro'.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Cool projects for a scorching Saturday

In a weak moment, I agreed to let my daughter take the tattered second sofa, overstuffed chair and ottoman that once furnished our living room to her new place. What remains is a wide open space that seems to beg for a dance party. Despite my husband's pleas to be his 'private dancer,' (it's too hot, even for a strip tease,) I am spending the day browsing online for replacement furniture here and here while simultaneously emptying, cleaning and refilling the old hot tub for a makeshift soaking pool...just like we did when the kids were little. Those 104-degree temps won't break me, yet! Now, if I could just find the old inner tube and water wings. Margaritas in the pool at 3...join me?
Hot tub circa 1991. Note absence of tiles and electrical tape over holes. Still works, tho'.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

My big, hot-ass (excuse my French) day

The Downtown Lawrence Sidewalk Sale 2012, of which I am in charge, went off today without a hitch, despite a wee-hours storm that made the air especially steamy, even at 6:15 a.m.  The sale continues until sundown, but I am home, taking refuge in the air conditioning. And, in the air conditioning, I intend to stay for the rest of my life...or, at least, for the foreseeable future.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Renouncing the Boy Scouts of America

As the wife and mother of Eagle Scouts, it is with a heavy heart that I forsake BSA based on their decision to ban gay boys and leaders from their ranks. My husband and son have never been what you would call "rah-rah," although my spouse was a Cub Scout leader longer than I care to remember. (Twelve hyperactive 3rd graders in your house every week? Not a relaxing way to come home from work.) Their interest was in the great outdoors, and the Scouts provided amazing wilderness adventures and training....not to mention invaluable father-son experiences that bonded them for life. It breaks my heart that fathers and sons who happen to be gay (and honest about it) will not have those advantages. And, I don't even want to think about the message it sends to gay young men, already struggling with their sexuality and social acceptance issues. Appalling.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Thai me up, but don't Thai me down!

We have a bumper crop of Thai basil in the garden so, tonight, I fired up the stove - against my better judgment - and made Panang Curry, the one dish I know how to make that contains the anise flavored herb. But, there has to be another use for it, I thought. I have three small bushes of the stuff. We're talking basil shrubbery here! Fortunately, a quick Google search turned up a refreshing example of summertime mixology, adjusted for low-carb correctness by me: To 2 quarts of Crystal Light, add a giant stalk of Thai basil and let sit for a while. (I waited 20 minutes; should have gone 30.) Pour yourself a glass over ice, add the juice of a half lemon, a spring of Thai basil and, an alcoholically correct amount of rum. In combo with my homemade curried cashews, it was a cocktail hour hit!

The vein(s) of my existence

My column today is the first of what could become the next white-hot trilogy. (That "50 Shades of Gray" chick has nothing on me.) It's not particularly sexy, but the next installment - which I am already writing in my head - is about what a spine-tingling turn on it is to help a man put on his compression stockings.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Now that's summer vacation!

Big party tonight in Kansas City. Last minute decision to low bid a Priceline hotel and save ourselves the drive home afterward. Holiday Inn at the Plaza: $70. And there's a DJ setting up at the pool. Everybody in!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, July 13, 2012

Happy 50th, Rolling Stones!

I'm having my own private golden jubilee for one of my all-time favorite bands, starting with this: My favorite all-time Stones tune which, as it turns out, was one of the most controversial. Come to think of it, it's like a precursor to "50 Shades of Gray." Oh, Mick....

I so much prefer the old version.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sometimes, it's best not to know everything.

A few years ago, my now 30-year-old son - a lifelong risk-taker - told me that one of his dreams was to go skydiving, and that he would indeed do it someday. I took him by the shoulders, looked him in the eyes and said, "My love, I think you should go for it. But, please - whatever you do - don't tell me about it until it's over." Turns out, he did just that. He jumped out of a friggin' plane when his dad and I were 4,000 miles away in the U.K. I'm not just finding out about it now. But, I had successfully blocked it out until I saw this commemorative photo on Facebook. Gawd.
My boy is the one in green. Not sure if this is 'before' or 'after.'

11 Diet-Friendly Cocktails

When the only thing left to do in a heatwave is hunker down in the A/C with an ice-cold libation, this list might come in handy. Cheers!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Who's your doggleganger?

This site is so much fun, I don't even mind that it says I look like a bull terrier.

"Talking to my 12-year-old self"

This reminds me of my son and every single one of his middle school friends, back in the day. The 12-year-old boy is such an endearing creature. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Jolly good.

A summery salad with sizzle

I'm taking this delicious sounding salad to friends' 4th of July picnic indoors (that's what I love about our friends; they're crazy, but not TOO crazy.) It's got all the ingredients I love - bacon, peaches, avocado and feta cheese (I'm throwing in some roasted pecans just because) and a fantastic dressing made with champagne vinegar (my favorite) that is chilling in the fridge, as I blog.

Happy Independence Day, friends. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Bye now, Andy.

I was so sad to hear about the passing of Andy Griffith today, until I heard that famous theme song played on NPR with lyrics...

That made me happy again.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Get happy...at least, for an hour.

"Happy hour" just became legal again in my state after 27 years. (Don't get me started on the screwy liquor laws in Kansas. There aren't enough hours left in the day.) As this article describes, bar owners are getting creative to entice patrons back into their bars, especially in the after-work hours. I'm kind of excited about the 'discounts for the over-50 set' idea: the "old enough to know better" hour.  I love it! Just as long as it's over in time for the early bird dinner hour.

Going low-glycemic

I continue to lose weight (albeit slowly) on the Wheat Belly diet which, it turns out, resembles the low-glycemic diet everyone's raving about lately.
While the article linked-to above is aimed at children's diets, I think the information is helpful for everyone, especially with the diabetes epidemic raging in this country.  And, the thing is, it's not hard to stick to. As long as I can have scotch.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Getting my "Beauty Sleep"

Would I like to review free samples of a new all-in-one sleep and beauty enhancer? Is the Pope Bavarian?  Of course, I would! No sooner than I told the manufacturers to bring it on, I received five doses of Beauty Sleep, a fairly pleasant tasting concoction containing melatonin, GABA, chamomile, something called Sensara, and other ingredients to help you go to sleep, stay asleep, and wake up in the morning prettier than when you went to bed. I can't speak to the morning part (that mirror still looks pretty scary pre-makeup), but the sleep inducer works like a charm, with no residual drowsiness the next day.  Recommended, and not because they were free.

Indoor project day!

Forced inside by torrid temps and inspired by a quick re-read of this book....
I de-junked my make-up drawer (again) by the following criteria:
1) Dark lipstick (which seriously ages you) and anything glittery (eyes, cheeks or lips) go in the trash.
2) Foundation and mascara more than one year old - or getting thick and dry - go, too.
3) Weird, too-young, 'what the hell was I thinking?' nail polish in blue, silver and black -- gone!
What's left looks like a lot but, believe me, I filled up an entire waste basket.

I'm not losing a daughter; I'm gaining a bitch.

My column today expounds on this post from last weekend. Incidentally, the daughter came back to visit yesterday and ended up spending the afternoon on the couch, catching up with "Girls" on HBO. (She's living sans cable now.) It was great to see her. Dixie, the new bitch, continues to adapt nicely. No word on what she thinks about "Girls."

Boomer Girl Review: Ultimate Oriole Feeder

I've still got a way to go before I'm feeding pigeons on the steps of St. Paul's (which I never thought was a bad thing to do ...