Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Well, Thanksgiving is upon us, and although it is sometimes easier to remember what I "Have not," I would like to focus on all that I do have. Just the other day I was telling Nicky that a number of people have recently commented to me (on FB and "TBR") that our family appears to be very happy. (This delights me no end btw.) Anyway, I explained to him that no amount of money in the world can buy happiness, or love; (although I have heard that there are some ranches in Nevada where you can try - LOL) Yes, when it comes to love and happiness, we are VERY rich and very fortunate; and I am most definitely, so VERY thankful.

I am SO grateful that I have: 3 wonderful, healthy, children. They are all that I ever thought I wanted, and more than I ever could have hoped for. Nicky, Lyndzi and Kelsie never cease to amaze with their wit and wisdom and I am INCREDIBLY proud to be their mom.
When I'm with my kids, I remember to appreciate the simple pleasures and enjoy each and every moment.
And then there is my handy, HUNKY, husband who puts up with a lot more than one man should have to and loves me despite of it. From slaying bees, to scaring skunks, showering me (while we camp) and coloring my hair; not to mention making world class Guacamole - I truly am married to the man of my dreams; and his name AIN'T Maks!

I am most appreciative of my VERY messy, love filled, home. Though no picture will be provided as it is my VERY MESSY, love filled, home.

I am so blessed to enjoy the friendship of many thought provoking, entertaining, caring, men and women who challenge and inspire me daily and who lift me up when I am down. (And as I am so lucky, to have my cup runneth over with friends; there is just not enough room for all of the pix that I would want to include.)

I am thankful that "General Hospital" still thrills me the way it did when I was 11. (I know; it's sad - but a little escape never hurt anyone; except maybe "Nurse Betty.")

I am grateful for James Spader and the verbal feast that is "Boston Legal." Don't you just love a show that is smart AND daring? I don't even want to think about the fact that it's the last season (remember, I'm giving thanks for what I HAVE.)

I am ETERNALLY grateful for the gym; and to Michelle (...)K for encouraging me to sign up last February. I have now lost 33lbs (haven't weighed myself in a few weeks though;) and I feel GREAT!
You all know that I am EXTRAORDINARILY grateful that the people of America will be inauggurating President Elect Obama this January - Woohoo!! And I've already said ALL I need to say about that.

Materialistically speaking, I am crazy, thankful that I waited to buy a new purse. I had been carrying a white purse THAT I LOVED; well past Labor Day (and I was NOT happy about it,) but I couldn't find anything that I liked enough to put the out of season bag away. (That is an added perk to living in Arizona - the seasons aren't quite as binding and no one probably even noticed the passe white except me; I hope.) Nonetheless, when Rachel was here in October, we literally conducted purse quest. I came close to a purchase in Macy's when I found a Sunflower Yellow Kathy Van Zeeland purse that I fell in love with. Alas my wallet did not fall in love with it; as it was FAR out of my purse price range - so my quest continued. I bought a purse a few weeks ago, (after convincing myself that time was of the essence;) and then I promptly returned it a week later (I'd never used it.) I returned it to yet, another ROSS, hoping that I would see something new there and then much to my surprise I found a FANFRIGGINTASTIC, purple, Kathy Van Zeeland purse for only $39.99 and as if I didn't know it was MINE the minute I laid my eyes on it; when I turned it around, it had a little crown charm hanging off the zipper. Did that have my name on it or what? T he picture certainly does not due it justice; but I know that at least Rachel will want to see it...
Now, we all know that I could probably go ON and ON; but instead; in the interest of the (say it with me) "Greater good," I would like to share some finds that I have been grateful for this year.
1. Del Monte Fruit Naturals Red Grapefruit - I have NEVER really enjoyed grapefruit before but this grapefruit is sweet as can be (and a natural appetite suppressant.) OK, I'll say it... Yum-o!! Totally 2 thumbs up.

2. SaraLee Cheesecake bites -(Thanks Rachel.) These are not the Cheesecake squares you may be thinking of; but pop in your mouth little bites that come in a variety of flavors. They have about 18 calories per bite, so a serving of 5 is only 90 calories; and trust me when I tell you that 5 is sufficient if you find yourself with a sweet tooth or just needing a little smile. (At my Walmart they are under $4 per container)

3. Candy corn and dry roasted peanuts - (Thanks Lori) Now, I have never had ANY use for candy corn AT ALL; but a couple of weeks ago we went to Lori's and she had a bowl mixed with candy corn and dry roasted peanuts. I asked her about this as I had never seen this before, and she told me that it tasted like a PAYDAY (not that I had ever had one of those either;) and she said it was delish. Well, SHE was right! We recommend 3 peanuts to 1 candy corn. It's actually a pretty good snack when you consider there is no fat in candy corn and peanuts are a protein. YES, I know it's sugar and it does have calories - but EVERYTHING in moderation, I say...

Now I know that when I previously thought about doing this list, I had a lot more on it, then just food; so chances are we will be revisiting this topic again; but in the meantime I give you the biggest treat of them all:
4. A Smokin Travel Discount - OK, so let me tell you about this. For my job that actually pays me, I work for an internet travel consortium and they have established a Friends and Family website which means that any of MY friends and family can make reservations and A. Not pay a service fee (like ALL other sites) and B. (and this is the best part;) YOU'll get 5% commission on your booking. Now, we only do hotels, so I can't help you with a discount on airfare or cars; but we do sell hotels around the world and the prices are typically very good (before the kick back.) So if any of my friends or family are interested, please leave me a comment and I will be more than happy to give you the info to hook you up. Once you're done, you are going to get your own referral # and then each time you make a booking, you'll receive a check for 5% of the room revenue (room rate only, not tax.) after we receive the commission from the hotel. Now sometimes it does take MONTHS to collect the commissions; but rest assured, once we've received it; so will you.
I hope that some of these finds will make you as happy as they have made me; and if they do, please leave me a NICE, little comment.

I wish you all the Happiest of Thanksgivings (and as I've told you many,many,times - I am so thankful for the time that you take to read "The Bumpy Ride;" and that you give me the opportunity to share my thoughts, opinions, and mess ups.) I encourage you to be thankful for what YOU HAVE....
Till next time...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My Big Lessons

I want to start by thanking everyone who read my more politically slanted blogs and honored my request not to leave opposing comments. I COMPLETELY understand that as this is a blog, people do like to make comments both positive and negative and this is something that I still have to get used to. Nonetheless; I am most appreciative for those who resisted the urge to slam me for my views.
Unfortunately, today, I had the experience of receiving a very negative comment from an anonymous reader. The commentor was upset with me for stealing the garage sale sign and failed to see that I myself had come to understand that my behavior was inappropriate and I was being karmically punished. I deleted the comment because I found it to be hurtful and cruel and I didn't think that anyone else needed to see it. I then changed the setting on the comment area so that no one can leave an anonymous comment any longer. The anonymous author then logged in as "Blogging Lurker" and went on to criticize me for everything from the length of my blogs, to my arrogance and my poor choice to use people's names in my blog. I had to think about this one for a while and I know EXACTLY what the lurker was talking about; and although most of his/her comments upset me greatly, he/she did have a valid point. I made a gross error in judgment when I wrote my Newman blog. I MISTAKENLY used the first name of the person that I was writing about. (I have since removed the person's name and now refer to her as So and SO.)
Trust me when I tell you that ANYONE who knows me, can tell you that I am the Queen of OVER THINKING. I edit this blog to the Nth degree; and there are times that I re-read a post's after they've been published and even though most of the readers have probably already seen it,I go back and edit whatever typo I've found. I mention this because I would NEVER intentionally use the name of someone that is not a friend; as I don't have the right to. When I wrote that blog I was in full swing of telling the story, and somehow missed that I had done this; and so believe it or not, I am actually GRATEFUL to the lurker for pointing this out to me. I have learned several BIG lessons. today 1 - DEFINITELY don't mention unauthorized names. 2 - Although I am attempting to be funny; there are a number of posts which may be construed as cruel or mean and that really is not what I'm here for. And 3 - There will be people who don't like my blog and don't like me and they will feel compelled to tell me about it. Well, it's 3 that I would like to address. At this point in time I am going to request that if you read my blog and you don't like it - please just keep on truckin. Don't leave me a comment and tell me why you hate me (or the blog;) just don't read it again. Not every blog is for everybody; just as not every book or magazine is for everybody and though I know it's your right to comment; I am asking you not to.

I hope that everyone understands; I'm not running for office, and I'm not trying to win a popularity contest; I'm just trying to become a writer. I like to entertain you with the insane stories of my life, and provide humorous observations; not because I'm perect or arrogant; just because I can - as can you on your own blog; if you would like to have one. And, yes, in addition to trying to put a smile on your faces I am also attempting to provide you with information that I think may be helpful; not as someone who thinks they are better than someone else but from one person to another; heck when other people pass good information, deals, recipes,treats on to me - I am PSYCHED and I want you to be too. I mean where else have you found techniques for bee removal. the recipe for Diet Coke chocolate cake, and a cure for hiccups ? It's all one stop shopping here at "THE BUMPY RIDE."
So at the risk of being accused of being verbose; let me conclude by thanking EVERYONE for taking the time to read my blogs. Thank you to everyone who does leave me positive feedback; and thank you to my friends for supporting me in my decision to keep on blogging. Thank you for your tolerance; as I'm still learning and I'm usually pretty good about not repeating my mistakes. I leave you with both my thanks and my apologies.
Till next time...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Don't tell Luis...

A couple of months ago Michelle (...)K and I decided to go garage sale-ing. I've had garage sales before; but I'd never actually gone to someone elses. Although we could have just cruised the area and found a bunch, Michelle (...)K wanted to take the organized approach so that we could maximize our garage sale experience; God love her. She looked online for sale ads and strategically map quested our morning.
We started at my house, hit a couple of sales in my vicinity and then headed out per our dossier for a sale that was advertised for 7AM.

As we were driving through the neighborhood of the advertised sale, we luckily saw a couple of people putting up signs. We made our way to the home and arrived at 7:21 to find the man of the house just beginning to pull things out of his garage and onto the driveway. The front door was open and in it stood A woman and her son. Michelle and I hesitantly approached the house and stood on the driveway, but no one said a word to us. After a few minutes of just standing there feeling stupid; the woman spoke (but not to us.) She asked her husband what time it was; but he said that he didn't know. Good Samaritan that I am , I announced the time, and then the woman said to her son (DEFINITELY not to us;) "Well, we're not starting till 8." OK, so Michelle and I removed ourselves from their driveway and proceeded to rehash the situation.
So you put an ad online for 7 am (and sure we all understand running late;) but you don't even have the courtesy to say "I'm sorry ladies; it's still going to be a while" or anything? Instead you act as if we're wrong for showing up at your home and you behave so rudely... Oh no, no, no. We were ANNOYED!
We started to drive off and just as we were going to turn onto the main road; Michelle said "Let's steal their signs." And we did! Michelle got out, pulled the stake out of the ground threw the sign in the car; and I drove to the next one. We stole the only 2 signs that we saw, which means the only 2 signs that ANYONE would have seen and we drove off laughing hysterically. Hmm, I wonder how many people showed up at 8 after that...

Now I know that this action is about as far from the greater good as you can get - but boy did it feel good. Revenge REALLY is sweet.
Now I know that some of you are probably shocked by this admission and I know that losing your favor is the chance that I take, but just as "revenge is sweet" is and expression; so is "Payback is a bitch;" oh, and never fear our good friend karma saw to it that I had myself a nice big plate of pay back shortly thereafter.

On Oct 17th Rachel (SFTIO Rachel) came for a long, overdue visit. On Sat, we kicked off our soccer season (No pun intended - OK, yah, you know ) with 4 games for my 3 kids and then we went to Michelle (...) K's that evening for scrapbooking. Now typically we don't have a theme for our monthly crops but as Autumn was technically upon us, we thought it would be fun to have a comfort theme for the night, so all the broads brought over their jammies to change into.
Shortly after we arrived Michelle offered me a Margarita. (Now what's more comforting than that?) I gladly accepted but (lightweight that I am ) I thought it was too strong and I sadly told Michelle that I couldn't drink it. She tried to doctor it up for me; but it was still too strong so I decided to take a pass.
The night went on and I put on my jammies, and not that it was THAT KIND of pajama party; but Michelle asked me why I left my bra on, and I replied "well, I still have to drive home. What if I get stopped by a cop?" OK, what if? I'm not really sure what difference it would make. I guess I just thought I'd look more respectable and so, just to put my theory to the test... Yup, I got stopped by a cop. (And the crowd gasped...) I got stopped by a cop and I wasn't even speeding. Lord knows that I've been on my best driving behavior since my photo ticket and my $195 driving class.
The officer came up to Rachel's window and asked me if I had been drinking. I said "just diet soda. I was scrapbooking at a friends; hence the attire." He said that I had briefly crossed over the lane line and then moved a way when I saw a truck. I explained that I moved away because I was going to get off at the exit. He said "OK, I'm just going to give you a warning." OY! Just what I needed; a warning - but thankfully, not a ticket. He returned to the car with my warning and asked if I had gotten a lot of scrapbooking done. Thank god I resisted the temptation to say "No, I was too buys drinking." hahaha
The next day I told Michelle what had happened because the irony was so delicious. I also told her that I wasn't going to tell Luis, so she shouldn't tell Mike. Now, I don't ever keep secrets from Luis, but I just didn't think that this was something that he needed to know. Sometimes it's good to keep the husband on a need to know basis - LOL

To celebrate Luis' birthday we had a poker game at Michelle (...) K's house. We were using chips but we weren't playing for money. My stash of worthless, chips was dwindling and so I announced "I need to win the next hand." And, I did - Big Time. Michelle said "That's amazing! You said that you needed to win and you did; just like when you knew that you were going to get stopped by a cop." UM, OK does anyone besides me see that big elephant in the room? The silence was palpable and Luis said "Lucy, you got some splaining to do." LOL

OK actually he said "What cop?" And I gave a good ole Lucy WAAAHH!
OK, actually I explained; and he took it in good stride,
but I know that Michelle felt terrible.
So, did one of these incidents REALLY have anything to do with each other? Probably not; but if you believe in Karma (which maybe I should have thought about before stealing the signs;) I say they do. Then again, this really just is par for the course for me. Regardless; now you know why why I want all that good karma on Facebook - LOL
Till next time...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"I Don't Know"

DISCLAIMER A: You must have read (Or READ) the Blog entitled "Stitch Strikes Again," before reading this.

DISCLAIMER B: No children were injured in the making of this blog. (Well, not that we're aware of now anyway - I'm sure I'll be getting a big ole therapy bill in years to come.)

OK, so I got the keys out of the car just about a half hour before I had to pick Lyndzi up from school. Kelsie seemed to think that just because I had gotten the keys out of the car; that she was no longer being punished; but this was not the case. Kelsie mulled around trying to find something to do (since I wouldn't let her watch TV;) and she was thrilled when she found out that it was time to pick up Lyndzi.
We came back home and I was in the kitchen with the girls. I was watering a plant, and I gently squirted Kelsie's dress with the sink sprayer. She started to cry and overreact; in inimitable Kelsie style (God, I love my daughter.) She was crying and saying "That's not nice Mama." And so I said; in my most June Cleaverish voice; "Ask me why I did it;" and she said "No," (sob, sob) and so I repeated (again Cleaverish) "Ask me why I did it." And then she said (sob, sob) "Why did you do that Mama?" And I said (in my most whiny Kelsie-esque voice,) "I don't know!" LOL Well Kelsie definitely didn't think this was funny; but oh boy, I sure did. OK, so June Cleaver I'm not ; Roseanne - MAYBE.
Till next time...

Stitch Strikes Again

Once again this was NOT the blog that I was planning on writing today; so you know what that means - BONUS!
When Kelsie got up this morning, I asked her if she was going to be a good girl today (she is prone to the naughty you know;) but she said "yes."
Our day was going along just fine. I was busy at work at my desk, and she was pretending to be a kitty and crawled under my desk and proceeded to meow incessantly. I got her out from under my desk with the promise of a snack and while she was enjoying it, Luis called. His question was typical "How's Ball Ball doing?" Ball Ball is Kelsie's alter ego, (or at least one of them.) It's what Luis has called her ever since she was a baby; when she is NOT in Stitch mode. Anyway, I replied "she's fine." and I told him that she claimed that she was going to be a good girl today. Luis recommended that I speak to her on a DAILY basis, and encourage her good behavior (as if I don't already do that? Thanks Dr. De Spock.)
Next, Kelsie came in and wowed me with her rendition of "When I Grow Up" A La the Pussy Cat Dolls, but in her version, when she grows up she's "gonna be a dentist, gonna be a jet pilot, gonna be a doctor; when she grows up she's gonna be a dentist, gonna be a nurse, gonna be a rock star." And of course, each thing was repeated about 50 times. (Well, at least she has high ambitions; but doesn't it figure that she'd wanna be a dentist - the thing that I'm afraid of most; and she wants to be one - HAHA) Anyway, it was at this point that I thought some lunch was in order. I was dying for a fountain, diet soda, so I suggested that we go out quick. We decided on a place to go, and Kelsie went to get in the car; while I went to the rest room. Next thing I know, Kelsie came back in and said," I can't get in; the door is locked." Now, at first I didn't worry because I've had this happen before. The back door is locked but the front doors are unlocked (OH, did I forget to mention that it is my usual practice to leave the keys in the UNLOCKED car?) Anyway, I told Kelsie not to worry because my door was probably unlocked, but she said that it wasn't. Now I was concerned; so I went into the garage, and sure enough; SHE had locked the keys in the car. I asked her WHY she locked the keys in the car and I got the standard Kelsie response "I don't know." Best I can understand, she tried pressing the buttons to open her door; because God forbid she should have waited 30 seconds for me; and next thing ya know, the doors are ALL locked.
I had hoped that I could somehow reach my hand in to unlock the door; but the windows were not open nearly enough for me to get my hand in; (like the time that I had locked the keys in the car with the car running.) Anyway, Wife of McGyver that I am; I looked around my garage to try and find something that I could fashion into a rescue device. I found part of a fishing pole and attempted to slide the keys onto it but there was nothing to keep it on the pole. I gave up for a while and went back inside to rethink this (and beat Kelsie - ha; just kidding. I didn't lay a finger on her.)
After speaking to Luis, I decided to take another stab at it. This time I found a golf club. I attempted to unlock the car by pressing on the button with the club but that didn't work. I tried the fishing pole with a piece of masking tape, but the tape wasn't strong enough. Then I went inside to see what else I could come up with. I got a hanger and asked Kelsie to find a jump rope. She didn't know where one was, but suggested (of all things) the rope from her "Angel" costume from her Christmas play last year. Ironic that her angel costume would rescue her inner devil; but alas, it worked. I got the keys out; and of course Kelsie took the credit for the idea since she got the "angel belt." Oy!, Stich what am I going to do with you?
Till next time...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

You Know You Have a Problem When... #3

You Know You Have a Problem, When ... You get up an extra 20 minutes early; just so you'll have time to check your Facebook account. LOL
OK, now to some this might not seem like a problem; but my extra 20 minutes occurs at 410AM. Now, I'm not complaining; I'm just reporting on the ridiculous; (as usual,) observational humorist that I am. So, on Sunday my brother called and informed me that I was addicted to Facebook. Well, he's not telling me something that I didn't already know. I am addicted and I admit it. "Hello, my name is Paige and I'm a Facebook addict." I'm addicted to how good it feels to re-connect with old friends and remembering times gone by. Oh yes, I am the Queen of KEEPING IN TOUCH; but sometimes friendships fade away, even when you don't mean for them to. So for me ESPECIALLY - Queen of MAINTAINING FRIENDSHIPS; Facebook has been ideal. I have found not just people that I knew - but friends. People that I cared about, and many, of them who knew my mom; which you know is just HUGE for me. So yes; I'm addicted; but it's not like I'm on Facebook instead of making my kid's lunch for school. I'm inconveniencing no one, but myself.

Now I'll admit, there are a lot of applications on Facebook, and I have fallen pray to some of them. First there is the status. Now, I tried to only update people on things that I thought were valuable (just can't get away from that Greater Good - can I?) So I thought that it would be a good idea to post when I was going for my mammogram; this way others would know I was going and hopefully be encouraged to go themselves - and I thought it was a good idea to post my status when I was writing a new blog; because I was (as always,) hoping to increase my readership; but perhaps I didn't need to post when I was waking the kids or getting my hair cut. Then again, for those who you are reconnecting with; the status gives you a glimpse into the every day lives of those who's lives you haven't been in every day for awhile. Nonetheless, I have resolved that unless it is REALLY important (inclusive of new blog notices ) or freakin funny as heck - I'm not going to be reporting my status from now on. Second, as with most addictions, there is some element of shame involved and so in the "I am feeling ashamed category" - I give you the accepting and giving of gifts. OY! the gifts. There is something for everyone on Facebook. Just so far alone I have been given: Starbucks, Drinks, Cupcakes, Pumpkins, Halloween Candy, Halloween Treats, Christmas Trees, Christmas Ornaments, Christmas Decorations, Christmas Stockings, Christmas Presents, Snow Globes, Smiles, Plants for my Lil green patch (which I love,) Sea animals for a little blue cove, Farm animals, Endangered Animals, Pokes up the wazoo, Baby Muppets, Dunkin Donuts, Ben and Jerry's ice cream, Flair (which I love), Good Karma (which I love), quizzes, quizzes and more quizzes, Animated Gifts, Italian gifts (whatever those are,) Louis Vuitton gifts, Girly girl gifts, Fly Fashionista gear, Baby seals, a dog, and a 3-D puppy (which my kids love). I have been asked to play Duck, Duck Goose, Go bowling, add a visual book shelf, and I've been kidnapped And I KNOW that there are a bazillion more applications that I have yet to discover (and possibly enjoy;) but who can keep up with it all? It's fun; but what I see happening is, that you get all of these gift requests from friends; they send you something so you feel like you should send it back; but due to time factors (at least for me) you wind up stockpiling them and when you finally find the time to take a look at them and start sending some back it looks like you're some crazed Santa Claus going gift crazy and sending everything and anything to everyone you know AND their mother; and I don't feel good about that. All of your friends can see every time you've sent something and I'm not feeling comfortable with this; so from here on out; people can send me whatever they want to send me; because I am MOST appreciative for the thought, but other than Lil green patch items, Good Karma and some Starbucks; I don't really plan on sending things back. I can't resist an endangered animal, so yes, if I get one, I will send one back and my kids are in LOVE with my 3-D puppy - Tootsie; so we will be taking care of her and if I see that your puppy needs to be cared for; of course I'll throw your dog a bone; no pun intended. Oh, OK, who am I kidding - of course there was a pun intended. LOL I think (like with anything) it takes time to get your bearings straight when you try something new. And now that I know what I want from Facebook; (My friends and a lovely Lil green patch;)I am all set to start a new.

Now for those of you who are not on Facebook; it must either sound like I'm speaking a foreign language; or I've totally convinced you not to get on it; but let me say again - I LOVE it! I LOVE FACEBOOK and I'm thankful for it. Facebook has brought some wonderful, old friends back into my life - friends who challenge and stimulate me; friends who inspire and delight me; friends who remind me how good the old times were. Facebook allows me to keep up with all of my partners in crime (Past and Present) and gives me a place that I can post pictures of me and my family so that I don't have to email them every time I've got a new photo. Facebook allows me to join my past and my present so that I can enjoy my friends who remind me of where I come from and my friends who remind me of where I'm going. Yes, Friends are such a blessing and are so very important to me; so MAYBE it's not that I'm addicted to Facebook; but I'm addicted to my friends; and FACEBOOK is just my means to an end. I thank everyone for their love and friendship over the years; and look forward to all that we have yet to share.
Till next time...

Artwork courtesy of Lyndzi Ramos (age - Almost 7)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I Think I'm Someone's Newman

OK, The Queen of EVERYTHING.

When I registered Nicky and Lyndzi for the swim team last summer; you had to agree to volunteer at one meet per season (per child;) so I was prepared to help by giving out ribbons, or being a timer; or whatever they needed. But, then it happened... Shannon (The Head coach,) who also happened to have been Nicky's second grade teacher AND a friend of mine; put up a sign that she needed a volunteer to announce the home meets. "Volunteer" ughh; that's my kryptonite. I have such a hard time ignoring a call for help - let alone from a friend. So, you all know what I did. That's right; " I volunteered." But, I did tell Shannon that I'd do it "if" she couldn't find someone else. And guess what - she found someone else; BUT she still needed me. Oh yes; she had a VERY special (and by special I mean nerve racking) job for me. I was going to be an officiant. I was going to sit at the table with the announcer and determine which order the kids placed in and record it - OY- The Pressure! But I don't back down from a challenge. I met the task head on; and by the second meet I had recruited Luis to help me, (because we really needed another pair of eyes.)
Now we were all set; Dave (or as Luis liked to call him; "Loud Guy,") me, and Luis were the efficient officiants for the kid's swim team.

Everything was going well for the efficient officiants until one HOT Thursday when DURING the meet , this young, thin, overly blond, woman approached our table; (I knew who this woman was because her son had just been in Kelsie's pre-school class.) and said "My daughter came in first and they gave her a second place ribbon." Through our conversation with her (which by the way was taking place while we were supposed to be watching another race;) we determined that her daughter had swam in a relay. So the 3 of us explained that although her daughter may have finished first; her lane must have finished second. She of course disputed this; which really was pointless because if she would have told Shannon; I know that Shannon would have just given her a first place ribbon; but NO - she just went on and on ; say it with me "While we were supposed to be watching another race." She finally gave up and went away; but she had the 3 of us so shaken up; that we were second guessing ourselves for the rest of the afternoon - so much so that "Loud Guy" even had to announce at one point that we had made a mistake on one call and re-announce the results for that race - which I'm sure just convinced her EVEN MORE that we had made a mistake in her 6 year old daughter's race.

When I saw Shannon I told her what had happened and how horrible this woman was; and she knew EXACTLY who I was talking about before I even pointed her out; and she told me what a nightmare this woman and her kids were. As it turns out, by the end of the meet she had yelled at me, Luis, Loud Guy and 2 of the coaches. Shannon urged me not to give this woman a second thought and informed me that Luis and I were now committed to these positions for as long as our kids are on the swim team. Guess how happy Luis is. - LOL

So swim team ends and back to school we go. Thankfully her son is not in Kelsie's class this year, and when we see each other, neither of us says a thing; although her son says hello to Kelsie, each and EVERY time we see them.

At the end of last soccer season I was recruited to join the board; so I did. Why? Because I have a problem - but we've already established this. I then in turn, recruited Michelle (...)k and we are now respectively the U-14 and U-6 division reps for our kid's soccer.

One evening we were working at registration and who do you think walked through the door? If you're guessing "nightmare woman; " you're right. She saw me sitting at the registration table and she kinda took a step back. You just know that she had to be thinking "What's with this god damned woman? Every where I go; there she is. I'm at swim team - she's officiating the race (not that I think she knows that word;) I go to register for soccer, she's taking the registration - what a freakin nightmare." Anyway, as fate would have it, I was the next board member available, so lucky me - she was ALL MINE. I was VERY polite and tried to help her; because she had a series of problems. First - no birth certificate for one of the kids (and of course - we REQUIRE one.) I spoke to the registrar (because I was sitting right next to her and I told "Nightmare woman" that she could get a copy and just give it to me at school. (How nice was that?) But wait - there's more. Her next problem (which she didn't even know she had;) was that her son (the one who goes to school with Kelsie) was too young to play. Of course I had to be the one to inform her of this. So I asked the registrar if he could play, and she said "Only if there is a coach who's willing to take him." So I said to "NW" "We can let you register him and if we can't find a coach who will take him; we'll refund your money for him - Is that OK?" She said "yes;" but went on to ask if Kelsie played. I said "yes" but explained that her birthday is before the cutoff. I must have re-iterated the terms and conditions of this registration a good 3 times; just to make sure that there were no misunderstandings. I was NICE. I mean Boy, was I NICE. And then as soon as she left, Jill (the registrar) said "No way in hell am I looking for a coach for her younger son because that woman and her kids are nightmares. I sense a theme here. This woman really has SOME reputation.

One morning, a few weeks ago, I was signing Kelsie in at pre-school and her teacher started venting to me about people who don't follow the rules. Well, you know she didn't mean me; because I am the Queen of FOLLOWING THE RULES. I think she just told me because she is familiar with me since she had been Lyndzi's teacher too. Either that or it's just because people just tend to tell me stuff. I don't know which; but nonetheless I didn't give it a any thought.

When I went to pick Kelsie up, her teacher started talking to me and then excused herself as she looked past me and said (in a harsh voice) "So and So, did you get my message?" I turned around as So and So started talking (I think that's human nature; or maybe I'm just a nosy bitch;) and I don't know why I was surprised, but So and So was none other than NIGHTMARE WOMAN. (I was giddy.) When the teacher started talking to me again I said "Is that who you were talking about this morning?" and she vehemently nodded YES. It was at this point that I knew; she is the most hated woman in Peoria; and I am her Newman. Remember Newman on Seinfeld? He was Jerry's nemesis and every time Jerry said "Hello Newman," he said it with such disdain. Well; I'm So and so's Newman - Everywhere she shows up; there I am - and no matter what she's doing; I'm doing more. First swim team, then soccer, now she has a problem with the staff at the school and I'm the witness. I'm probably the last person that she wants to see ANYWHERE. So, I bet it came as no surprise when she got to the fall performance at the pre-school and saw Kelsie's name in the program. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree ya know. We're just a family of Do-ers.

Perhaps next time I run into her (And you KNOW there will be a next time;) I'll just say (in my best Seinfeldesque tone) "Hello So and So;" to which I'm sure she'll respond "Hello Newman." Or more than likely - she'll say nothing at all; but her son will say "Hi" to Kelsie.
Till next time...

Congratulations America!

This was not the blog that I was planning on writing today. Not because I thought Obama would lose but because I thought that I had said all that I had to say (as if that's ever possible...)
To quote John McCain (yes, you read that right;) "America has spoken and spoken clearly." And I thank god for that.
Senator McCain delivered a humble and respectful concession speech that gave me hope that he will serve our President Elect and this country well. In return President Elect Obama spoke very highly and admirably of Senator McCain and his service to our country and it was refreshing to feel that the glaring separation between Democrats and Republicans may now be put to rest as EVERYONE comes together to repair OUR UNITED States of America.
I fully agree with Lori's comment (on my election day post) as I am hopeful that now that a President has been chosen, everyone will lend their support and stand together (say it with me) "FOR THE GREATER GOOD!"
This is a monumental victory for Barack Obama and I have every faith that it will be a monumental victory for the Unites States of America.
I am so thankful for everyone who voted yesterday and for the first time in a very, long time I am optimistic about our future and I believe that we should expect change for the better. YES WE CAN - and WE DID!!
Congratulations President Elect Obama and Vice President Elect Biden. Congratulations America!!
Till next time...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Take My Challenge ...

This month's "Scrapbooking from the Inside Out" kit club them is GRATITUDE; and one of our current threads is to mention something that you are grateful for. After returning from voting; I wrote "I'm grateful for the chance to make a change and the possibility of promise." And not to toot my own horn; but I thought that was kind of eloquent and profound - OK, I'm tooting; I know - but I really thought that these were ideas worth sharing - ESPECIALLY today.
I woke up at my usual 415am and I worked for a half hour before leaving to vote. I waited in line and was 19th to cast my ballot. I felt a great sense of satisfaction and an even bigger sense of hope. I am hoping that this country makes the choices that will lead to changes that will benefit the majority and put us little guys back on track to pursue our American Dreams. I am fearful that bigotry and fear will prevail. I am fearful that uninformed, voters will cast ballots or that people will make decisions based on "The worst thing that they have heard about one candidate." You know what - No one is perfect. I am supporting Obama and have I heard stories and opinions that are cause for concern - absolutely; but I have heard more of these types of stories about McCain / Palin and I would truly abhor the idea of Sarah Palin becoming our President; god forbid McClain was elected and died. I am imploring you to think of this scenario if for any reason you are undecided about how to vote.
With that said, I am VERY late for work; but I felt that it was SO important to share these ideas with you; that I'm willing to work late today so that I can get this out.
At this point I want to issue a challenge. It is one that I have already taken myself today, in a number of different ways and the challenge is "DO something that scares you a little. Step out of your comfort zone and take a leap. Do something that is going to promote change for the better in your life. Even if it is the smallest step." Now I'm sure that you're wondering where this is coming from, so please remember this is "The Bumpy Ride;" you know I come out of left field ALL THE TIME. But here it is. DO you think that 35 years ago, little Barack Obama believed that he was going to be President of the United States of America in 2009? My guess is probably not. How many chances do you think he had to take to get to this point in his career? And even if he doesn't win today, I guarantee that he is all the better for the journey. His life will never be the same; and he will not give up. These are things that I believe whole heatedly; and I would like to encourage you to follow his example and do something to promote yourself today. Dwell in the possibility of who you can become and take your first step today, or your second or fifty ninth - just don't live in fear.
So what have I done? Well, step one, I voted. I would have voted no matter what, but I had to find my new voting place today and I HATE going places that I haven't been before. It makes me very anxious; but I did it (and I didn't even take my Xanax.) Step 2, I wrote this blog, instead of working;because it is my passion and what I hope to parlay into my full time career; but also against my bettter judgment because I have come to believe that my readers enjoy the funny, Paige telling crazy stories about her life more than they do my opinions and theories on "The greater good;" but I'm taking a chance that you'll see the benefit in these words and suggestions and believe in how much I WANT for you all. So go ahead; take my challenge and let me know what and how you do. I'm sure you'll be glad you did.
Till next time...