Showing posts from December, 2006

I get some weird spam. . .

but this one took the cake:

From: "Karina Sierra"
Subject: Re: REPLY
Date: Sat, 23 Dec 2006 23:04:28 +0500

The imaginative pork chop, an anomaly about a food stamp, and the fried scythe are what made America great!
You didnt know exactly where to find the gotta, but you always knew when you did.
A submarine about some chess board is statesmanlike. For example, the judge indicates that a lover defined by a tripod ignores the muddy reactor.
Yeah, he supposed he would get through it, if the goddam typewriter held together.


It snowed this morning and most of the day. I got to try out a Toro Power Shovel I'd bought last spring at Home Depot for $50. It works very well. I felt like SNOW WOMAN!

After the first shoveling, I tackled Chris' office, rearranging things, trying to put manuals together for the computer and music items, going through the bookshelf, drawers and closets. I found a stack of commendations and certificates of promoti…

Christmas is over - now for New Year's

Before I begin with Christmas stories, some things I forgot to mention in previous posts:

1) When I was up in Houlton, Maine with the dogs, the morning I had to be at the school early was a cold, cold morning. As I let the car warm up, with Bandit on his blanket in the back seat and Guin in the front passenger seat, shivering, I remembered something. Jurgen has heated seats! So I turned on Guin's seat to the lowest setting and turned on the heated steering wheel for me. Ahhhhh.

I looked at Guin and saw her sit straight up with a weird look on her face, then she turned to look at me. I almost thought she'd peed on the seat. Then she looked like she had a smile on her face and snuggled to lie down on the seat, all curled up in a warm little ball.

Ever since then, if it's cold when we go out, she whimpers and gives me "the look." This means turn on the seat, dammit!


Chris' barber, who I mentioned had an uncomfortable run-in with me, had karma bit…

What I'm going to miss. . .

On Christmas Eve, Chris and I always had his mom and dad over for dinner, then to open presents and sometimes play cards. I'll miss that. After they left, we'd always watch "It's A Wonderful Life." I'll miss that. I don't think I'll ever be able to watch that movie again, though.

On Christmas morning, I'd usually get up first to hang up Chris' stocking. Mine was always up because Chris would usually stay up a bit after watching the movie. I'd wake up the dogs, then Chris. We would make mimosas, toast Christmas Day, then would open presents. Bandit and Guin love Christmas, especially Bandit. As I've said before, he's very intelligent and I would tell him Santa had brought him presents. Even blind, he'd go to the tree and start rooting around for his presents. They each got their own stocking as well and we'd take turns giving the dogs their presents. I'll miss that.

We'd then watch some TV, play with any new "toys…

So many things to do. . .

Shipped the ghost books out on Monday, did some more Christmas shopping, picked out a mattress to go with my new bed (which should be in soon, I hope).

On Saturday night, went to Vivi's house for dinner and met Debbie, her son Jordy, and Vivi's niece and her boyfriend. Vivi's brother, Ron, was there, too. We had delish roast beef, veggies and potatoes, had a couple of glasses of red wine, then switched to diet coke (for the caffeine) and just enjoyed myself. Debbie had brought their new puppy, Chloe - a Sheltie/black cocker mix. So adorable and very smart!

Hmm. Just been busy doing odds and ends - putting together the official Bandit and Guinevere 2007 calendar (if you want one, it's $10, free shipping). I always make them for my parents, Chris' mom, the girls at the bank and one for our house. We dropped off the calendar at the bank today and the girls there were going through it, laughing their butts off. I do a pretty good job on that calendar, if I do say so mys…

WHOA Newsletter - December 18, 2006

WHOA Newsletter

December 18, 2006

I couldn't make this up if I tried. . .Only could happen this time of year

Ho! Ho! Ho! The bizarre abounds at Christmas
Chubby British children are reaching for fruit and vegetables this Christmas while Japanese shoppers are being tempted by the ultimate treat -- a Christmas cake decorated with diamonds.

As for Father Christmas, he is gallivanting happily in cyberspace but faces a tough time down on earth as children tug his beard, sneeze all over him and wet his lap.

Cash tills may be ringing on the Internet but in Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, festive cheer is in short supply.

With a week to go, Christmas offers its usual diet of weird and wonderful tales around the world and 2006 is no exception.

With bad diet and sloth pushing up obesity rates in England, a self-help group of chubby little Londoners is getting together for weekly classes on nutrition to help them resist the culinary …

Thai Dish, Arlo, Some Comments on People's Reactions

Met up with Arlo and his lady friend Yvonne. Got hugs from both. Ordered duck curry (which was delish and brought some home for dinner another night). Chris used to play online submarine sim games with Arlo and his son. While Arlo and Yvonne and I talked (which was awkward at times - some people are just uncomfortable with me right now and I understand), they kept touching each other, kissing on the cheek and being very affectionate. I was a bit put off by it and honestly, it made me feel uncomfortable, but I have a feeling it was their reaction to Chris being gone and reassuring each other.

I gave Arlo a bunch of sub hats that Chris would wear when he played the sim games with him and he was touched.

He looked at a guitar he was interested in, a Fender telecaster James Burton Signature Model. It needs a new neck (Chris dropped his brand new Glock one day and the safety didn't work and shot a hole through the guitar case and the neck). I need to get some idea of a price for him. He …

Ho ho houlton!

Left Monday morning in Jurgen (if you don't know, that's the name of my Beemer) with Bandit in the back seat and Guin in the front passenger seat. The ride up to Houlton, Maine was pretty uneventful. Had to stop a few times to let them pee, got them burgers at Burger King (shhh, don't tell anyone) and got to the Shiretown Motor Inn by 5 pm. Caught up with email, then ran out to Shop N Save to get a cobb salad for dinner. Went to bed and Bandit had me up in the middle of the night (even though I'd let them both out to pee and poop before going to bed). Oy.

Got up early, as my first talk to the high school students was at 8:15 am. Drove to the school, got the dogs settled in a rarely used hallway in the school, set up my laptop. I have to say that Bandit and Guin were so good, it wasn't funny. They let kids that walked by pet them and didn't bark or fuss. Although Guin did pee and poop when we first went in. I cleaned it up.

The high school student talk went well u…

Catching up on the last few days

Let's see. . .Thursday I had to do a radio interview at 2 pm (I must have sounded lovely with my cold), then went to the doctor at 3:30 to get some cold meds and more cough syrup. Picked up my meds, came home, ate and went to bed.

Friday morning I had to do a phone interview with the Social Security Administration. The woman was nice, asked a lot of questions and because of my age, I am only eligible for a $255 one-time death benefit. I can start collecting on Chris' SS when I turn 60. That's a way aways. Okay.

At 3:30 I went to my lawyer's office and got the official word that the workshop at Chris' parents house does come to me. I made arrangements with his mom and some friends to get the book collection out of the basement on Saturday. I also had to sign a bunch of paperwork - for the life insurance, the title of the Jeep so that it's now mine, etc. My eyes began to cross at the end. Took a hot bubble bath and went to bed early.

Bandit has been getting me up at…

Day three/four in Minneapolis, then the flight home

I set up the books on a small table near the registration booths and did end up selling some, then headed to set up for my afternoon talk.

Had a good crowd show up - almost 100 and got good questions and sold more books - yay!

Did I mention the conference already paid my lecture fee? WOW! All I have to submit are my travel expenses. Talk about efficient!

As I mentioned before, Mark Elder from had a booth at the conference. He graciously allowed me to set my books up on the end of one table to try to sell them after my talk. I also helped him out a bit and we talked a lot. I think he liked the company, LOL.

I took my things back up to my room, changed, went to the gift shop to get some OJ and hit a store that is only open at night (lord knows why). I bought some bath foam there (basically fancy bubble bath). Went back to my room and ordered some quesadillas from room service and watched my favorite show, "Heroes." It was the season finale and WOW - a good one!

Took my c…

Day two/three in Minneapolis

Yesterday's workshop had a whopping six people in it. I really wish they had the workshops during the conference and not as a pre-conference so that more people would attend. But it was a good group of folks, got some great questions and went online to take them to some of the web sites I'd talked about, especially Sold one book.

I'd told my mom that Chris' mom sounded really depressed yesterday, so my mom had my friend Vivi drive her over to spend the afternoon with her. Dick and Bill (Chris' friends) fought over who would drive my mom home. That was pretty funny. My mom is as worried about Chris' mom as I am. She shouldn't be in that big house alone, even with Brigitte. I wish someone would get her out of there for a week - I'll dogsit. Any takers?

Afterwards, I went upstairs, changed into some comfortable clothes, then headed back downstairs to the sports bar with a magazine to unwind and had one glass of wine. Headed back to my room, orde…

Minneapolis is cccccccold

Picked up my mom Friday (had lunch with my sister, mom and sister's friend) and stopped by Chris' mom's house on the way home.Brigitte just loves Mom2 (Mom is my mom and Mom2 is Chris' mom, just so you won't get confused) so much. She growled at my mom and followed Mom2 all over the house.

We had tea, Mom2 teared up a couple of times, so did I, but it was a nice visit.

Got home and gave mom her list of instructions on taking care of the dogs and how to use things in the house (like the TV/stereo, heating, microwave, coffeepot, etc). We went grocery shopping and came back. I finished up some things on my computer for my trip while Mom enjoyed flipping through all the cable channels. She stopped at an old Bill Cosby special and was laughing her butt off.

I've got a cold. Coughing my lungs out. Great. Took some Nyquil before going to bed.

Saturday morning packed, went over final instructions with Mom, then the car service came to get me. Quick ride to Logan airport, q…