Aug 27, 2008

totally messed up.

what do you get when you get a virus on your computer.


so i am out of the information superhighway, on the side of it, cooling my heels.

hopefully it'll just be a week.

see you soon.

Aug 24, 2008

take a photo. it lasts longer.

just some shots from yesterday. the surfers were out en force.
i just loved how this guy's board popped out against all the gray of the day and the ocean.

love sandpipers. spent the better part of an hour chasing them little buggers. they probably thought i was a stalker.
i love the beach. have i mentioned i loved my camera, too?

when EZ-Ups attack and try to overthrow their Human Overlords.

when B & i got married, 10 years ago, we were the par-tay king & queen.

before our first anniversary, we had a beach party. later that year, we had a Christmas party...except that, we had friends coming that didn't celebrate Christmas, so we called it a Spirit of the Season party.

i love throwing parties. the cleaning up, not so much.

but for whatever reason, i really, really love throwing Christmas parties. even back in high school, my friends & i were throwing them. we called it the NewMas party. everyone brought a white elephant gift, and at midnight (or close to it) we'd celebrate the new year.

after we got married, we decided every year we'd have a beach party and a Christmas-er, Spirit of the Season par-tay.

then the Husband started working at the Pennysaver and working weird hours that involved Saturdays. parties were out.

but as soon as he got back to a normal schedule, so did our parties.

what's fun about beach parties, is, we here in the OC, surprisingly, we don't have a lot of local beaches with firepits. the closest one is Bolsa Chica.
that charges $10/car to get in.
that had a half mile long line of people yesterday morning waiting to get in when the beach opened @ 6am.

oh good googly moogly.

so yesterday, i was there at 6am. in line. Brendan got there about 7, and we started setting up camp. unloading food. setting up EZ-ups, which, in my opinion, is a completely misnamed product.

we borrowed two from my friend, and with ours, had a complete tent city, with a firepit as the centerpiece.

and, while we were setting up, these two college boys came up, rather chirpily, and asked if we were planning on staying here all day.

yep. we are.

oh. they said. because we needed a fire pit.

oh. i thought. then your butt shoulda been here at 6am. like mine was.

that was before the tornado.

about 3ish, this breeze came up. and when i call it a breeze, i'm being kind.
it was pretty strong. we giggled as a party near us, their EZ-Up tumbled like Shriner clowns.
so you know that old saying about be careful what you laugh at?

i should've remembered that.

one of our EZUps went tumbling. Brendan and i went scrambling after it. then, as we were trying to take it down, EZUp 2 proved how EZ it too can tumble. and also how quickly it can whack my Husband in the back of the neck.

four girls from the camp next to ours came running to help us with EZ killer #2. then, as we got 1 & 2 under control, the third one went for a flight.

at this point, the party, was officially over.

and, like vultures on the African grasslands, they came.

hi - you leaving? cuz we're planning a sweet-16 birthday party for our friend and we don't have a firepit.

again - your butt shoulda been here @ 6am. like i was.

but of course i gave 'em the pit. (and sold my firewood for $10/a pile. i paid $7 for it at the Ralphs. snicker.)

so you see - parties - they're a good thing.
even when EZUps attack.

Aug 19, 2008

you know what sucks?

this year.
this year totally sucks big (and small) ones.

it started out with B being unemployed. which went on and on and on.

then his truck was totalled out by the insurance company.

then he finally got a job.

then he got a new car.

yesterday he was put on hiatus.

really? i didn't know you could do that to a person. perhaps a crappy TV show for retooling. but a job?

this year sucks.

now, while neither of us are exactly sure what a job hiatus is, we do know this. the company he works for, their largest client cut their advertising with them by half. so, their knee-jerk reaction was to put B on hold for two weeks.

decorum and respect for my husband prevent sharing my opinion here. but if you know me, and most of you do, you've got a pretty dang good idea what i thought.

and what i still think.

so we'll see what happens - they should know if B stays or is voted off the island by end of next week.

in the meantime, i for one will be glad to kiss off 2008.

and it's only August.

happier posts later.

OK - that was long enough.
the Kindergartener and her mom called me today - and believe me, that call made my day.

the Kindergartener lost her first tooth today - it was sideways, and, when she showed her mom, my sister in law told her to pull it out.

which she did.

ohgoodmoogleygoogley. not a chance in hell i could do that.

so the Tooth Fairy is making a stop in Reno tonight, extracting teeth and leaving a fiver. why a fiver? because the Fairy ran out of cash when the Boyo lost his first tooth and it was either a $5 or a $20.

sometimes, the Fairy needs an assistant.

but, they both know now that, while the Tooth Fairy leaves $5 for the first tooth, every subsequent one only nets $1.

i'm hoping for photos of the toothless wonder. hint, hint, Maureen.

here's hoping tomorrow is a better day.

Aug 16, 2008

now...where were we?

oh yeah. talking about the week.
well, let's just get to the nitty-gritty: two of the cutest kids in Nevada.

this is the kind of photo i can show to a future prom date.

ah, Nintendo. where would we be without ye?

we went to swim lessons. gah, but i love taking pictures with a faboo telephoto lens.

then, of course, the first day of school...for kindergarten...

after the teacher brought in the kids, they read this story called "The Kissing Hand," about a raccoon who is scared about starting school, so his momma kisses his hand and tells him that if he gets lonely, he can press his hand (paw?) to his cheek, feel momma's kiss and know he's not along.
i'm actually the one that started sniffling, not Maureen.

and, as the teacher read, the Brand New Kindergartner raised her hand to let the teacher know that 'my mommy says her kisses are permanent.'
she's a pistol, she is.

Maureen & i did lotsa clothes shopping for the Kindergartner - dang, but there's some way super cute girl clothes out there. totally fun to play dress up with a real live doll.

y'know, if i could take pictures like this all the time, i could be happy.

i know. it's kinda dark. but man, it's fun watching kids jump and well, be kids.

i could eat 'em with a spoon.

and, while up there, i would check my work email and see the insanity going on back at home, and i would think 'oh, i do so wish i was there to help out.'


i hated leaving. especially when, on the flight home, we hadn't pushed back from the gate, and it had been about 15 minutes since the attendant had shut the door of the plane.

finally the pilot got on the intercom and, apologizing for the hangup, says 'sorry for the hold up, folks, seems that *chuckle* we forgot to file a flight plan. but, we're all settled and should be pushing back shortly.'

you forgot to file a flight plan? the Husband almost wet himself laughing.

'why didn't he just walk down the aisle of the plane reading How to Fly a Plane?' he said.

why indeed. it's why i love flying.

but with these two, it's dang good reasons to keep getting on that plane.

Aug 14, 2008


i'm home.

i had a faboo time.

but i came home, went back to work and walked right in the middle of a firestorm.

so i'm sorry, but no update today. hang on - tomorrow's coming, and so much to share.

like the pilot that 'forgot' to file a flight plan.

that oughta whet yer appetite.

Aug 6, 2008

it's so shiny!

the OC Fair closed on Sunday - and with it my hopes and dreams of being an award-winning photographer.

man. am i a drama queen or what?

let's face it: after my last visit to the Fair and checking out all the photos, i'm making a mental list of what i may want to enter next year. but first, i gotta get this year's entry.

yesterday was pick-up day at the Fair, and they were pretty dang clear: pick up yer stuff or risk it becoming landfill fodder.

pretty dang clear, dontcha think?

so i drove down - and man, they made the pick-up process easy-peasy-lemon-squeezey.
when i got there, a very nice lady looked at my claim check and asked me if i knew where i was at...which i did. she escorted me over to it, pulled it off the wall, then we walked over to a table where i got a shiny new 'accepted for exhibition' baby blue ribbon.

and thus endeth my photography foire for the Fair.

just wait till next year.

in other news...

as Jacqui will attest - it's humid here lately. (so, Kenny, when i got your email about summertime in Mississippi, i giggled. then i went outside and realized that Mississippi got transferred to Cal-ee-forn-i-a.

and since it's so dang humid, you cannot sleep. unless you have central air.

which i don't.

and if you have a bed thrasher for a mate, which i do, it makes it even more fun.

which is why i'm up at this unearthly hour.

i foresee a Starbucks in my immediate future.

i also foresee a trip to the airport today. i'll be out of the state for a week, heading up to Reno to take lotsa photos and share with my sister-in-law when her baby starts kindergarten next Monday.

the jury's still out as to who will cry first.

i may post from the road, but don't be upset if i don't. see you next week.

Aug 4, 2008

WARNING: the following post is filled with crankiness!

hi - i'm valerie, and i'm cranky.

not just a little cranky, but full-blown nuclear piss-a-rama cranky.

and i'm loving it.

usually, i really try to put on a brave face. no one likes to be around Miss CrankyPants, or Mr. Midol, either for that matter, and so, i really try hard to be pleasant.

not today, kids. not at all.

what got me started? hormones, mostly. work is getting weirder and there's not enough Twix bars, wine, ice cream and brownies in the universe to make things better.

then i catch sight of my butt in the mirror and realize that Weight Watchers & i have got to get reacquainted.

so i tried hard to not talk to anyone today. keep my head down, work, work, work. if i can't see you, you can't see me.

hey - it worked when i was a kid.

so on my way to lunch, i ended up talking to someone.


and she complimented me on my hair color.

horror of horrors!!

OK, i'm not totally psychotic. i appreciate a complement. heck, i even appreciate two compliments. three or more, and well, i'm in Nirvana and am unable to form coherent
words together.

which isn't different than any other day.

back to my story.

after i was complimented on my hair color, i mentioned that the Husband said (just the other day, as a matter of fact) he preferred me as a redhead.

i have no issues with it, i liked being a redhead! but i saw a photo of myself (also being about 15 pounds heavier, you can totally see it in my face) with the red hair and dang if that just isn't a good color for me.

so the woman i was talking to, who might have been a touch hormonal herself, says, 'oh, you know men! they cannot stand having other people notice that their women look good. they want you to look good for them, just not for anyone else.'


suddenly, i was transported back to junior high, when Crazy Auntie Kay told me to only go to male hairdressers. female ones apparently don't want other women to look good, but men are OK with helping us to look goooood.

and no, i'm not sure how that logic works if the hairdresser, um...bats for the other team.

so my crank-o-meter went off the charts. come on, what's next? all women are bad at math?
that we are better/worse drivers than men?

next thing you know, we'll need to be barefoot and pregnant 24/7/365.

like i said, i'm a bit testy.

and i'm thinking that idea i once had to be a hermit, living in the mountains (or what passes for mountains 'round here) and yelling for all the damn kids to git off mah lawn.

except that if i'm a hermit, there won't be any kids on my lawn.

dammit. now i'm cranky. again.