Monday, July 30, 2012

Vacation Highlights

With a fun vacation like the one I just had, it's hard to know where to begin in summarizing it! So I won't even try. I'll just share with you some highlights. 

Saw some beautiful sunsets
Soaked in the sun
Played Monopoly three times (won once)
Bonded with my nephew who I love so much!

Went on a dune buggy ride on Lake Michigan (soooo fun!)

Got badly sunburnt my first day of vacation but continued going to the beach every day anyway

Played Yahtzee (among several other unpictured games) 

Walked down the beach a couple miles to a beautiful lighthouse where we climbed to the top

Read and went to some of my favorite local book stores. 
Ate and ate and ate and ate. Soooo much ice cream!
Walked some gorgeous trails in the state park.

Played with some adorable dogs!
Did I mention I ate a lot?
Spent a lot of time with the fam and had a blast with everyone who was able to come.

It was a great week! I hated to see it end. I love northern Michigan! But in a way, it's nice to be back in my routine again. I will miss eating ice cream every day though.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

What Vacation Sounds Like

On the best Great Lake: Lake Michigan.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wednesday Thoughts

In case you've been wondering where I am, wonder no further. I am on my annual family vacation to Ludington, in northern Michigan. Every year since I was a kid my family has been gathering "up north" for the last full week of July. This year a cousin who hasn't joined us on the family trip in a few years came along. It's been a blast having him and his wife, Dana, here - oh and of course, their giant puppy, Blue.

Because my cousin hasn't come up for our annual week for awhile (we all still come up to Ludington several other times per summer, just not as coordinated of a trip), we've had fun remembering some of our favorite Ludington family vacation memories, such as: 

* The time Barry put a dollar on the end of a fishing pole and stuck it through the hole of the game room window and tricked people into catching it.
* The year Rachel played the song "Scatman" on the game room juke box nonstop.
* The years the resort we stay at had daily competitions and how we entered ALL of them (billiards, ping pong, tennis, shuffleboard, and fishing). 
* The time Ernie fell off the boat.
* The time we took the double decker bus tour.

This year we're creating new memories. Most afternoons this is our view:

While in the evening, this is our view:

And in between there's a lot of this:

Which is why I haven't had much time for blogging.

But I'll be back later with more stories!

Happy Wednesday.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wednesday Thoughts

To survive the heat, I've temporarily given up on the outdoors, which mostly means crafting. I know some of you are bored with the idea of crafting, but that's cause you've forgotten that when I do crafts, they are HARDCORE!


If you're wondering what a craftsplosion looks like, here it is (Sarah is pictured here):

Craft supplies everywhere
I am working on opening an etsy shop (yep, I'm one of them now*) so I can share my craft love with all who are willing to give me money. I mostly find my inspiration in Michigan right now:

Besides staying inside crafting, you know what else beats the heat? My ice cream maker:

And of course, this week is the Ann Arbor art fair. The art fair always falls on the hottest week of the summer, which is why I never go. This morning a delivery guy at work asked me if I go to it. I shook my head at him like he was asking me the most ridiculous question in the world. He said, "but you work right here! You could just walk a few blocks to it!" I didn't see his point.

The art fair is our rain dance too. It's been so dry here all summer, but this morning on the first day of the art fair, it's overcast and storms are rolling in. Thank you art fair, you're the best rain dance ever.

Happy Wednesday.

* that's not a bad thing.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Fire and Ice




It's so hot. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know some of you in Arizona are thinking "Pf. She doesn't even know hot." And that's ok. You can think that. I think the same thing in the winter when you say it's "freezing" and it's 40 degrees. Ha!

But for Michigan, this is the hard month. It's supposed to be 103 degrees today with one BAZILLION percent humidity. Or at least, it will feel that way. You walk outside and feel like you're being steamed to death.

As Megan Amram said, "It's not you, it's me." - Humidity, to Heat

Ok, I'll stop being over dramatic.

Last night I lay in bed worrying about the heat today. Mainly because I love being outside but when I get too hot I turn into a monster. A ragey monster. That made me wonder: for all the complaining I do about winter, can I tolerate cold better than heat....?

Who am I....? I am having a slight identity crisis right now. It's not that I necessarly LIKE winter more than summer (that would be crazy talk) but maybe I can deal with it better? I mean, you can layer as many clothes as you want, but you can only take off so many, you know what I mean?

What about you? I'm not asking which season you LIKE more, but which season's weather can you tolerate more?

I'll leave you with a Robert Frost poem I memorized in middle school:

Fire and Ice

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if I had to parish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great, 
and would suffice.

It applies; don't over think it.

So which is it? Hot or cold? Which is more tolerable? Your comments are important. I'm going to send them to the Library of Congress once they're all in. Yep, this poll is that official.*

*this is the heat talking.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Rosy cheeks, no warts

This afternoon I got to spend time with some of my nieces and nephews, which makes me happy to no end. They are adorable and hilarious, though I may be biased.

We were at an outdoor festival and it was HOT. The kids were overheating and getting really tired, so we bought some ice cream cones and sat in the shade for awhile. That's where we had one of the funniest conversations I've ever had with them. So funny in fact, I had to keep notes as it was going so I wouldn't forget what was said.

In this conversation, my oldest niece, who is 7, told me that I need to get married before I can have kids. I told her I was working on it, and asked what I should look for in a husband. Here's the transcript of the rest of the conversation.

"P" is my 7 year old niece.
"E" is my 6 year old nephew. 
"Me" is me. Duh.

Me: So what should I look for in a husband?

E: Find someone with his hair slicked back.

P: Maybe Justin Bieber.

E: Oh yeah, he'd be really good.

P: I was going to say Michael Jackson, but he's dead.

E: Michael Jackson is dead??

P: Find a boy who is really handsome.

E: With muscles that go up to the roof.

P: Try to find a guy who's cool at the beach.

E: Someone like Ken (of Ken and Barbie).

Me: What should he be like on the inside?

E: He should be smart.

P: Nice. And sexy.

Me: What does "sexy" mean to you?

P: Sexy with his girlfriend. Like kissing and stuff.

Me: Just kissing though, right?

P: Right.

E: He should be awesome.

So that's basically what I'm looking for now, in a nutshell. The conversation reminded me of Jane and Michael Banks' song in Mary Poppins (hence the title of this post).

If you want this choice position
Have a cheery disposition
Rosy cheeks, no warts!
Play games, all sorts.

You must be kind, you must be witty
Very sweet and fairly pretty
Take us on outings, give us treats
Sing songs, bring sweets.

Yep, I guess that about covers it. Slicked back hair, cool at the beach, Justin Bieber, and Ken. But not Michael Jackson. I got this.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wednesday Thoughts

I've been making a lot of stuff this week. Procrastinating more important things has been the main motivating factor here. That and stress. Whenever I'm stressed I turn to making things - whether it be food or crafts. It's therapeutic! And I have a long list of projects coming up! Here are some of the things I've made this week:

Three kid-sized hula hoops:


A string "e" (capital letters bum me out). Got this idea from Pinterest, of course. This picture is the worst. It's all dark and the letter clearly hasn't found its home yet. But just imagine that it's seriously beautiful in the light of day, and is going to be gorgeous when it finds its place on one of my shelves (wow, I'm placing a LOT of pressure on one letter).

Have you guys seen this Cookie Monster remake of "Call me Maybe"? It's worth a watch. And I hate the original song, so you can trust me. My favorite line is:

"Before you came into me life me missed you so bad."

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cinematic Experiences

This past week was full of fun and unique opportunities for me. I was carpe dieming all over the place. I have already told you about some of the fun things I did, but today I'll tell you about two movies I saw. They were not your ordinary movies. Or at least, they weren't MY ordinary movies. You'll see what I mean as you read on.

The first was a movie called "The Doll Squad" which is one of the worst movies ever made. I mean, it was so bad my brain hurt. The acting was bad, the plot line made absolutely NO sense, and the camera work was..... I mean, there are no words for how bad it was. Which is exactly why Mystery Science Theater decided to riff on it. My friend who works for the Ann Arbor summer festival hooked me up with free tickets to see the gang LIVE riff on The Doll Squad at the Michigan theater.

In case you've never heard of Mystery Science Theater before, basically it's a group who find the worst movies ever made, and make jokes about the movie through out it. It's kind of nerdy. In fact, one of my friends made fun of me for going to it by saying, "it's where nerds go to die."

It was hilarious. I had only seen one Mystery Science Theater movie before so I wasn't sure what to expect. The gang sat on the sides of the stage and live riffed throughout the Doll Squad. I missed some of the dialogue in the movie because of that, but that was actually a huge blessing because the dialogue I did hear was awful.

Suffice it to say I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. And it didn't hurt that one of their roadies opened the show by interpretive lip syncing to "Quit Playing Games with my Heart" by Backstreet Boys. 'Nuff said.

The second unique movie experience I had was a completely different genre. I saw the new Madea movie: "Madea's Witness Protection." It's interesting because as I have told some friends I saw this movie, the reactions have been different than I expected. A few just seem mildly amused while others seem offended, saying, "I would never spend money on those movies. They are so racist."

All I knew going into it was the that the previews looked funny, that I'd never seen a Madea movie before, and that I was curious. Here's my review in bullet point form:
  • Tyler Perry when he's playing a man? Hot.
  • Tyler Perry when he's playing a woman? Hilarious. I'm sorry. But he was so funny as Madea.
  • Denise Richards can NOT act.
  • My friends and I cringed throughout the movie at the painful racial stereotypes, BUT...
  • We also laughed a lot because Madea is very funny.
Overall? I wouldn't pay to see another Madea movie in the theater. The plot was weak, the ending was weird, and the racial stereotypes made me uncomfortable. I'm not sure the laughs are worth that for me. I guess I shouldn't assume all the Madea movies are as bad as this one. But I don't plan on watching them to find out. I have heard that Diary of a Mad Black Woman is really good though, so I will probably rent that one.

At the rate I'm going with bad movies lately, who knows what I'll see next? (checking movie times for the Katy Perry movie...)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Craigslist Killer

Minus the killer. (I hope.)

So, I posted two ads on Craigslist this week (for the first time) and I have gotten NO responses. What do you think I could add to these to spruce them up??

Ad 1  (part of the problem with the rollerblades is that they were two sizes too big. And landed me in the E.R. about six years ago. But I figured I wouldn't get into all that in the ad.)

Ad 2

PS, Maybe I broke my toe last night? Can anything be done for a broken toe? Here's a pic if you're insane and like grossness. Actually, whether you like it or not I'm showing it to you. Sorry. Don't be eating now or you'll be grossed out.

Swollen toe

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Wednesday Thoughts

Happy Independence Day! I spent the last 24 hours trying to do as many things as possible to celebrate America, or as some of us like to call it, "'Merica." I think I did pretty well. Here's a condensed list of the typically American things I did to celebrate our independence:

Went to a baseball game.

Ate pie, a hot dog, and Middle Eastern desserts from a Middle Eastern bakery. 'Merica.

Went to a bbq with friends and family and made red, white, and blue food.

Went to a Fourth of July celebration, which got rained out. But not before
I got to see this guy:

Hope you had a happy Independence Day! Oh yeah, and happy Wednesday!

Monday, July 2, 2012


Actual convo between Katherine and me yesterday, on our drive to church.

* Last week when I was visiting my grandma, she expressed her concern that her son (who lives out of state) and her daughter (who lives here in Michigan) were both going to be on vacation the same week. She seemed really worried about this. I asked her why her son being out of town would bother her, since she doesn't see him during the week anyway. She said exasperatedly, "Because I'm trying to schedule a trip to Heaven and I don't want to ruin anyone's vacation! I need to figure out a time when no one is going to be on vacation this summer."*

* 13 year old nephew, talking about a girl he met: "she's really cool but I have one concern about her. She doesn't like bacon."

* Me to friend: It sounds like they think they're the boss of you.
Friend: They are the Tony to my Danza.

* Friend: Oh did, I tell you I'm coming to Michigan??
Me: REALLY? When!?!
Friend: Fall of 2013.
Me: That means nothing to me.

* Seen walking down the street this morning: Old woman wearing shirt that said "Class of 2006."
* Seen Saturday afternoon: Young child wearing shirt that said, "Class of 2009."
Nothing makes sense anymore.

*I reminded her that she can't schedule it. It's on the Lord's time. She just waved that away and said she knows. It's not that she's going to will herself to die. She just tries really hard to stay alive so she doesn't interrupt anyone's schedule.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

My life in pictures

Sometimes, you guys, I don't know what to blog about these days. To be honest, I don't always know what you all want to hear about from me. I have some things I'd like to blog about. In fact, I have several unfinished posts that I debate about posting all the time. Posts on self esteem and dating (and how they relate) mostly. But I'm just not sure I want to open that whole can of worms.

Here's a picture of a tweet that kinda expresses a lot of what I want to express:

Also, here's an actual picture I took this weekend. For real you guys, this happened. Did it scare me? Yeah, kinda. I mean, it's just a giraffe, but it was looking me right in the eye and it was big. And adorable. I had a lot of conflicting emotions, obviously. Mostly I just wanted to hug it around that long neck. But I didn't. 

One more thing I'll share tonight: This is my favorite song right now. The video is silly but just listen to the song. I'm loving it lately. "Simple Girl" by Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.

I'm going to put some topics on the side that I have thought about blogging about. Go ahead and vote for what you'd like to hear about. It'd help me out!