Monday, October 29, 2012

Get Fit, Feel Epic - Round Up

Whew! Hope no one gets blown away by Sandy this week! Living in Michigan, we're not supposed to be affected muchly by her *yet* but our lovely neighbors to the north are sending cold and high winds our way. Our weather radio went off this morning at 5:30 and I was outside shortly after, taking skeletons & ghosts into the garage and laying tombstones down flat. The shorter stones and my beloved blowmolds I left out there, since the molds are all sitting on long wood dowels that I pounded into the ground, so I'm guessing (hoping) they'll be OK. If I see any problems when I get home from work, I'll take them into the garage, too.

We had a chilly & windy weekend, too. Saturday while the girl was at dance, I took the dog to Tillson Street, which is a whole street of old Victorian houses that go all out for Halloween. We also went with the family last night, but I like to see it during the day and check out the details. Jack was so funny. He didn't know what to think of this skeleton who suddenly sat up when we walked by. Nothing in my display moves, so this was new to him. At least he didn't do the Beagle howl at it!

Sunday, I'd somehow managed to get volunteered to play radio for a 5k walk/run. But I was actually useful this time! I was out on my post, the last one on the course, when Randy (who we all called in to) needed me to find a nearby policeman and have him call the paramedics for someone who'd just finished the run and was having an asthma attack. Luckily there was one doing traffic control right on my corner. It was funny, there were 2 ladies and a little girl from the group putting on the walk also on my corner and they cheered for everyone who passed. I clapped for almost everyone; the first couple runners, the younger kids, the ones who I was proud to see out there (ie, the larger people) and we all cheered for the very last group.

Special thanks to Rebecca for hosting this challenge - it's been a lot of fun!

Arighty - it's the final GFFE post! I'll post how I did this week on each of my goals, then how I did overall.  I missed a week of the challenge, so I won't count that week.

1. attend a WW meeting every week.  Check!  I was all depressed during the meeting (that only covered Halloween as an afterthought!) because I looked at my book and I swear it said I was up 1.8 lbs.  But later on when I went to enter it in eTools, I saw I was down 1.4!!  What happened!?!?!

Overall - 4 / 7  I have 2 - half credits in there, where I weighed in, but didn't stay for the meeting. 

2. do some sort of exercise 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes.  4/3  3 of these were with my buddy, Jack.

Overall - 17 / 21  not too bad!

3. Track every day.  5 / 7 woohooooo!

I've only been doing this the last 3 weeks of the challenge.  So 11 / 21.  Better than not at all!

4. look up and try at least 3 new recipes a week.  Hmm.  I think none, so 0/3

Overall - 8 / 21  Meh. Sort of glad my family is boring.

5. do at least 15 minutes daily straightening up the house.  6/7

Overall, I've been doing pretty good with this.   42 / 49  And in just a couple days I'll be concentrating on switching the Halloween stuff out with Fall! ~sniff~ boohoo. :*(

So....I could have done much better with my goals.  I also could have done worse.  Now that I think back and have read other people's posts, I should have chosen different goals.  I'll keep that in mind for next time!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

My Dad

3 years ago today, Dad passed away after a lengthy illness.  He is still missed a bunch.

 Dad & me (12/73)

 Dad & me & Dino (12/76)

Mon & Angel & Dad (8/98)

Dad & me & Mom (7/8/06)

What's funny is...earlier this week I had to look up the anniversary date of his passing (I had a brain fart, couldn't remember if it was the 26th or 27th) and when I Googled his name for the obituary, I got all sorts of hits for.....

the USS James C. Owens DD776

How hilarious!  I never knew there was a US Navy ship with the exact same name as Dad - and I'm sure he didn't know, either!  
It was commissioned in 1944, and named after a fighter pilot who was shot down with his entire squadron in the Battle of Midway in 1942.  It was used in WWII and the Korean War and was also a recovery ship for several Gemini and Apollo space missions.  It was decommissioned in July 1973. 

I still miss him a lot, but I try to concentrate on all the good times we had while growing up.  Learning how to swim, hanging on his back.  The zillions of trips up north.  Going for walks around town.  Him (who was usually up at the crack of dawn) refusing to get out of bed on Christmas morning until he smelled coffee brewing.  Going to sleep every night, hearing his snores echoing thru the house.  His ego that he passed on to many of us. Oh the list goes on!

I'm very grateful that I was able to give him and Mom a trip of their lifetimes, a week-long cruise on an aircraft carrier.  I'm glad he got to give me away in marriage to a guy he liked.  

And I'm truly grateful he helped give me life!!
I love you, Dad!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Great Pumpkin visited me!

Over on my Maple Grove Cemetery blog, I was involved in a Great Pumpkin gift exchange.  It was masterminded by the wonderful Dex at AEIOU...and Sometimes Why  We signed up and got randomly assigned another person to send a gift to, on behalf of the Great Pumpkin.  This is the awesome gift I got today!


 Bugs & snakes & skeletons

 A magnetic list pad, a bracelet (hair tie, maybe?) witch Pez dispenser, roll of H'ween tattoos, various Peeps noms, absolutely adorable magnets, inflatable cat

 A Recipe / jack o' lantern pattern book with spooky sounds CD 
and a desktop gargoyle to ward off evil co-workers!

Chester & Maddie approve.

I love Halloween!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Friend Makin' Monday - Winning the Lottery....

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section over at: so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

Winning the Lottery

What’s the first thing you would do for yourself if you won 100 million dollars? Note: this question is specifically for you…what would you do for fun after the family and the bills and the obvious stuff was taken care of?

Oh my. I would totally buy a house on Tillson Street in Romeo, Michigan. It is 2 blocks of beautiful historical Victorian houses and they also happen to go nuts at Halloween! Here is a link to my blog post of pics from last year. I would LOOOOVE to live there.


If that is not possible, then I would happily tear down & rebuild our current house. I do like the neighborhood, so I'm OK with this. Right now we have 849 sq. feet. The back section was added on by a drunken baboon in 1973 - there's no way a licensed contractor of any worth built this. I'd like a basement with a Man Cave for Randy to put all his radio stuff in. I have ideas on how I'd want that decorated, too. I want an actual laundry ROOM with room to iron & fold clothes, instead of a closet where I have to straddle the furnace to reach into the washer and twist my knee awkwardly to also have the dryer open. I want a linen closet to put sheets & towels in, instead of in a falling apart dresser in the girl's closet. I want to have a working shower in my bathroom, one without a hole the shape of Randy's foot in the bottom. Either a shower or an armoire for storage. I'd be happy with either. I want a fenced yard so I can just open the back door and let the dog out, instead of having to venture out in my PJs to put him on the run. Yeah - that happens daily.

Begone!  or BeChanged!

New cars for me & Randy both. He'd probably want something like an old Ford Crown Vic, retired police cruiser. I'd be happy with a Ford Escape or Explorer or Edge. I love my 12 year old Escort, but sometimes my knee makes it difficult to get out of something that low. I have to stick with the Big 3, since I don't want to risk being haunted by my Dad.

Ford Escape

Crown Vic 

OK, next would be travel. I want to visit all 50 states. I want to go to London and along with the usual expected sightseeing, spend a whole day (or two or three) exploring Highgate Cemetery. There are lots of places I'd want to visit in Europe & Asia.

Highgate Cemetery entrance

Miss Angela, who is already quite spoiled, would be getting her own personal, private TUTOR / DRILL SERGEANT!!!! WoohooooO!

So what would you do if you won the lottery?

Get Fit, Feel Epic - week 8

Happy Monday!!

It wasn't much of a weekend at the Love Shaque, due to the hubby coming home from work Friday, all whiny & not feeling well (such a guy!!)  He did manage to make it to the bowling alley for the dance studio's fundraiser, but that was it.  I won't share the gory details, but will say he was actually sick and I felt sorry for him.  And also hope that he wasn't contagious!  

So Saturday I didn't do much, I wanted to stay close to Mr. Drama in case he needed something. I did go weigh in and did the studio shuttle for Miss Angela, but I always had my phone handy.  I worked on a couple small projects and made a quick trip to the Dollar Tree to get a few more things for my witches kitchen.  It's amazing how creepy some things can look when you put them in a different location.  I have bottles of rice, coriander, body scrub, string, glitter, beads, artificial flowers, all sorts of stuff.

Sunday, I cut down dead flowers & plants in my yard and got the back yard mowed.  That's a lot of bending, so the backs of my thighs are burning right now!

So here's how I did with my goals this week.

1. attend a WW meeting every week.   Check!  I was up slightly, but since this is PMS week, I wasn't too worried about that.  I went to the Saturday 10am meeting.  That seems to be a good time frame, since I'm up already and it wasn't crowded.  The topic this week was evening snacking & how to survive the urge. That's a tough one.  Lately I've been craving soft chocolate chip cookies, badly.  And we don't have any in the house, so that solves that issue!

2. do some sort of exercise 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes.  3/3  I took Jack for a walk, walked at work 6 laps of the building, and mowed the yard (when your yard is as big as mine, this totally counts!)

3. track every day.   3/7    meh.

4. look up and try at least 3 new recipes a week.   1/3    Crockpot Beef Stroganoff  was pretty darn tasty if I must say so myself!

5. do at least 15 minutes daily straightening up the house.   6/7   Saturday was pretty low-key

This weeks' challenge was a photo scavenger hunt.  Very fun to do!

1. me after a workout - it was a 2 mile walk.  Not overly sweaty, but definitely wind-blown.

2. a piece of fitness equipment.  OK, here are 2 pieces.  My feet & Jack. 

3. where I sleep.  Complete with cats, Chester & Maddie on the pillow.

4. my favorite movie.  Top Gun  This came out when I was in middle school.  I wonder if, deep down, it had something to do with me joining the Navy?  

5. my source of inspiration.  Angel and her recital photos (9 dances!!) from last year.

6. something that makes me happy (only one thing???)  horseback riding
7. nature.  I love this clump of very different colored trees.

8. something I've grown or created.  The Maple Grove Cemetery, shown here mostly set up.

9. something I really should stop.  Pop.

10. something new(ish) that I love.  I've had my iPhone for about 6 months.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Oh my!

I am getting into a horrible habit of not posting here regularly!

Let's go to the Cliffnotes version of my life....

let me see - the weekend of Angel's party, she had 2 friends over Friday night and all she wanted to do is go to the mall.  I got her an ice cream cake from Baskin Robbins and actually took the time to look thru teen-y magazines to find full-length pictures of all the guys in One Direction.  I glued them to cardboard & taped on some skewers & decorated her cake with them.  Cheesy, but she loved it!

Sunday we went to the orchard (that had no apples, thanks to the late frost in the spring!), but we jumped on the pillow & went thru the corn maze and visited the petting zoo, etc.  It was pretty fun.

Me & Laurie

 Niece Lisa & Angel

I reached the end of the corn maze!

 Ah yes - Saturday while she was at her acro class at the studio - my Maple Grove Cemetery began to appear! Muahahahaha!! I waited til after her party!
 Jack knocked over Walter & Matilda. 

I have a small irritation.  I told Angel her friends had to be gone by 10:30 at the latest, due to her having to be at the studio at 11.  Why, at 10:45 is one kid still there & she hadn't even called her parents to get her????  WTF?!?! I ended up taking her home on the way to the studio.  Tuck & Roll, sunshine!

Anyway, I had told my sister I'd drive out to her house (45 minutes one way) on both that first Saturday & Sunday to feed & let out her horses while she was on vacation.  Which meant I was out the door by 6:30am ~groan~  at least I got some pretty pics!

Now, the cemetery is about 95% set up.  I haven't decided what to do with these guys yet.
Bobert & Billiam

I'm pretty happy with the inside stuff.  Not that it matters, except to me.  Neener, neener.

Little Miss Maddie seems to be enjoying the season with me.

Last weekend (our weekdays aren't particularly exciting, obviously!) we were supposed to be going to a cemetery walk in Romeo to "meet" some locals who had been in the Civil War, since it is the 150th anniversary.  Saturday was cold & windy & rainy and it took all I had to leave the house to take Angel to the studio.  I called the historical society and they fortunately called me back to let me know that if it continued to rain, they'd cancel the walk and we'd get a refund.  Cool.  Later I saw on FaceBook that they were postponing it til Sunday.  Crap.  We had signed up to do radio comms for a CROP walk for some church group.  So needless to say, the Romeo Historical Society got a little donation from us.  

Since we missed the Romeo Cemetery Walk, we stopped by this other old cemetery (click link for pictures!) and walked around for a bit.  It had a historical marker, so I tried to get pictures of all the people's stones that were mentioned.  I almost succeeded!  Angel sat in the car while Randy & I explored, so when we went  to leave, it wouldn't start.  Apparently she'd turned the key too far when she wanted to listen to the radio and had the heater & everything else going and drained the battery.  Neat!  It took AAA roadside assistance an hour to get out to us, to spend all of 3 minutes to jump my car.  Quality time!

So that's really all that's going on.  Work is the same.  I got spoiled with Randy being a nobody, since he'd be home usually around 6 / 6:30 every day.  Now he's a team leader again and it was 11 when he got home a couple nights ago. Part of that may have been a beeper call, tho.  I'll give him the benefit of doubt.  I hate when he gets stuck staying that late, but at least they did feed him this time.

Last night was the annual bowling fundraiser for the dance studio.  This is one of the more successful fundraisers and the $$ goes towards comp fees and stuff, so we do make an effort of getting people to go, and it's fun.  But it started at 10pm!  That's past my bedtime!  Plus Randy came home not feeling well and today has been in bed most of the day, whining & moaning like a typical guy does.  He thinks it's a reaction to his flu shot.  I hope so, because I sure don't want me or Angel to come down with this!

Happy Weekend!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Friend Makin' Monday - Quick & Random

Woohoo, my favorite type of questions~

btw - had a 1.8 lb loss at weigh in on Saturday - sounds good, but I wasn't wearing jeans this time. I wonder what those weigh??

It's that time again!

If you've taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section over at: so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

Quick and Random
1. Choose three songs that would be on the soundtrack of your life. Hmmm. Right now it would be.....
This is Halloween
The One by Gary Allen (our first dance at our wedding)
No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem - Kenny Chesney

Those really don't sound horribly motivating, do they? LOL!

2. Share the details of one project that you’re currently working on. It's all about Halloween details right now, especially since the yard is mostly done and it's too windy / cold / rainy to get outside. I have a box of random jars and bottles in my kitchen that I'm going to transform into a witches kitchen.

3. If you could learn to do one thing overnight what would it be? Woodworking skills like Norm Abram.

4. If you could be a fictional character which one would you be? Skye O'Malley from the Bertice Small book series. She's a very strong-willed, independent and yet still feminine character. And she gets to wear those awesome clothes from back in Elizabethan times.

5. What’s your favorite thing about the month of October?  HALLOWEEN !!!!

6. Share one TV show that you’re embarrassed to admit you watch. I'm actually not embarrassed to admit this - it's fascinating. RuPaul's Drag Race.

7. Name one friend that you’re thankful to have in your life today. The one I wake up with every day. My hubby, Randy. Altho sometimes I do wish I had more close female friends.

8. What was the most relaxing part of your weekend? Other than to weigh in & take the girl to her dance class, not going anywhere or doing a darn thing on Saturday.

9. Do you like to dance? Yes.

10. Share one thing that you’re looking forward to before the end of the year. Going to Arkansas again and visiting the Buckstaff Bath House! OK, and seeing the mother-in-law (she's a sweetheart!)

Now it’s your turn to answer this week’s questions! Take a moment to answer the questions on your own blog, and don’t forget to come back and link up in the comments!

Get Fit, Feel Epic - week 7

Happy Monday!  Saturday was a totally lazy day.  It was cold, windy & rainy so except for going to hop on the scale and to take the girl to the studio for her acro class, we didn't leave the house at all.  I was sort of bummed, since we had tickets to go to a cemetery walk, but it was postponed because of the rain.  Of course they rescheduled it for Sunday, when we had a prior commitment! 

Randy & I volunteered to do radio communications for a church group's CROP walk on Sunday afternoon.  There ended up being 6 of us on the 4 mile course and reporting in to Randy when the walkers got to us and when our "rover" - a ham on a bike bringing up the rear - passed by.  On my corner, there was me and someone from the church group to point the walkers in the right direction.  He was pretty excited about our rover, since last year he didn't know when the walk was over! We spent more time waiting for things to happen than the walk actually took!  Oh well - it's the first time I've been out on a course for whatever reason and people smiled and thanked us.  

After that, we went to the Romeo cemetery to see if that walk was still going on, but it wasn't.  So we stopped to explore this other little old cemetery that had a historical marker on it.  Lots of local people who had "made an impact" to the area were buried there.  It was neat.  Until we went to leave and my car had died.  We had to sit there for an hour before AAA's roadside assistance showed up.  Yay!  Nothing like quality family time while stuck in the car in the rain!  btw - my car is filthy!  We took some dirt roads & it actually looks like I've been mudding. I will be using the truck wash at work before I leave today!

Alrighty, it's that time!
1. attend a WW meeting every week.  half credit again!  I weighed in - I was down 1.8 lbs from last week, but I also was not wearing jeans this time. 

2. do some sort of exercise 3 times for at least 30 minutes. 1/3 I should have used my Walk at Home DVDs or the Wii since it was too crappy to get outside to do anything.  Shame on me!

3. track every day. (I changed this from the hypnosis thing)  3/7  It's better than what I was doing!

4. look up and try at least 3 new recipes.  1/3  I didn't actually look it up.  I took leftover roast and tossed it back in the crock pot with some BBQ sauce & it made for some pretty freakin' amazing sandwiches.
5. do at least 15 minutes daily straightening up the house. 5/7  I sort of went backwards here, since I brought a box & a bag of stuff in from the garage for my witches' kitchen and haven't done anything with them yet. 

So here are the results of the GFFE week 6 challenge!  Definitely not what I used to be able to do, and these were done girly-style (on my knees)  but it's better than nothing!  And I had help.  If the cat wasn't under me, the dog would be there trying to lick my face or rolling around in the way.  My critters feel that if you're on the floor, you're on their level & must pay attention to them. 

Week 7's challenge is going to be fun...a photo scavenger hunt!!
I need to take creative pictures of.....

1. me after a workout
2. a piece of fitness equipment
3. where I sleep
4. my favorite movie
5. my source of inspiration
6. something that makes me happy (only one thing???) 
7. nature
8. something I've grown or created
9. something I really should stop
10. something new that I love

have a great week!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Get Fit, Feel Epic - Week 6

Happy Monday!! I had a busy weekend - I was up at 6 am both days to drive 45 minutes (each way) to take care of my sister's horses while she's on vacation. Then I had a bunch of errands to run on Saturday and Sunday, Miss Angela and I worked on setting up more the yard display.  It sure felt like we were busy all day, but it was only for a couple hours, and we're still not done!  Of course it was only 50* and off & on drizzle, too. 
 My philosophy!
Now it's time for business!
 Let's see how I did....

1. attend a WW meeting every week.   I'm going to give myself half credit for this.  I did stop in to weigh in, but didn't stay for the meeting.  I came in during the middle of the meeting anyway and I smelled like horse, so they probably wouldn't have wanted me to stay!  Good news, even tho I'd missed weighing in for the last 2 weeks and I was wearing jeans (which I NEVER do for weigh in!), I was only up .4 lbs.  However, the meeting location finally updated their computer system and it shows my progress since Day 1 (August 2008) instead of when I restarted in March 2011.  So it shows me as having lost 45 lbs.

2. do some sort of exercise 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes  4/3  I've taken the dog out twice for walks around different parks, plus 2 walks around the building at work (5 laps = a mile).  And it's a good workout cleaning the horses' stalls and wheeling the heavy wheelbarrow out to dump it.

3. re-listen to a hypnosis session 4 times a week    0/4  'nuff said.

4. look up and try at least 3 new recipes a week  2/3  I think. I'm drawing a blank at what we've had this past week.  I made a beef roast yesterday in the crockpot and that used some different seasonings.  I also waited to put the taters & carrots in until the end, so it was the best one I've ever made!  We plan to use the leftovers as BBQ beef sandwiches tonight.  We had tacos with ground turkey earlier this week, too.  That was different. 

 5. do at least 15 minutes daily straightening up the house (it makes me feel better - mental health counts!!)  5/7  I didn't do crap in the house this weekend!  Lots of stuff outside, tho. 

Last week's challenge was a fail.  I watched exactly 1 hour of TV this past week - it was the Jeff Dunham's Halloween special last night.  He's so funny!  So I sprawled on the couch with a glass of water and enjoyed the show with the family.  I did not get off my butt during the commercials.  However, I did get out and do some prop building with power tools & painting that makes me bend & stretch & lift in ways that I don't usually do.  So maybe that along with cleaning stalls could be my substitute exercise?

This week's I have no excuse not to complete!  Do as many pushups as I can and then do more each day.  It's been a long time since I've had to do any, so I sure won't be at US Navy standards like I used to be.  But I'll see what I can do!  

Have a great week!