Thursday, October 29, 2009

Bye October!

It's almost the end of October..two more months until the year is over. Halloween is at the door, and I can already smell the Thanksgiving turkey---oh, and don't forget Christmas... It's hard not to realize that the holidays are coming. I'm reminded each time I enter a grocery store or a mall. The turkey basters are all ready on display admist the left over, last minute Halloween candy, and from the corner you can already see red and green in the aisles screaming Christmas.

Are you ready?

Are we ever ready?

October was a weird month. October has never really been a good month for me--there are some memories associated with the month that I really don't care for. It includes the passing of a baby niece of mine, an anniversary of a large earthquake that shook my little hometown, and the beginning of end of my first marriage. My son Andrew most recently lost a former classmate this month due to a fatal stabbing. He was 16 years old. It was an incident of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The suspects are known gang members and only one is in custody. Three still remain "out there". The victim was not a gang member, but was wearing red shoelaces-the color of his high school; my school. It boggles the mind that something could happen like this in my hometown-two blocks from the high school, and three blocks from the police station. We do live in a scary world. Andrew has been emotional, and has been asking for extra hugs, and sitting a little more close to me nowadays. He better never complain about his 10 pm curfew ever again!

Last night I put the finishing touches on Andrew and Nicholas' costume. Now that I have sole possession of my camera, I hope to post some pictures of Halloween events. I have Andrew's cereal killer shirt hanging in van, and it's pretty scary looking. Picture boxes of cereal boxes on a white shirt, with cereal glued on the shirt, with fake blood. Sounds harmless, but after Lizzy helped me with the blood splatters, we had it hanging by the front door, and it looked rather creepy under the moonlight.

Nicholas is a magician! I got a black cape, and wrote "Nicholas the Fabulous" with glue paint on the back of his cape, which got mixed reviews: "It sounds like a label for either a cheesy wrestler or a drag queen." So I added "the magician" at the end, and it fixed the "problem". Of course Nicholas heard these comments and didn't want to be teased, but after reminding him that most of his classmates couldn't read anyway, no would would know what I wrote. This morning when he was running in the playground at kindergarten, he felt better because no one did, and he seemed content enough to see how his cape blew in the wind.

Lizzy was so inspired by Nicholas' costume, she too has decided to be a magician, and her boyfriend is going to be a rabbit. This all inspired me of course to also dress as a rabbit, or should I say---COELHA. So, this should make interesting pictures.

My husband, Richard is going to dress like a dad and husband. He doesn't do Halloween, but that is okay, because he makes it fits the part most excellently.

Tonight I'm going to meet up with an old friend that I haven't seen since my "newly divorced, single days." Last time I saw her she was engaged with her now husband. It will be nice to play catch up with her over a margarita--hell, may be I'll even bring my camera after I delete all these advertising photos Lizzy took of tampons and fingernail polish. The other day she made me a hand model for a advertisment photo for nail polish. I will tell you, my fingers started to cramp up. I had to hold down a 4 inch crooked nail "gracefully" with the tip of my nail. Not as easy as you may imagine...'s Friday!!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Airport Adventure

Recently, Rich and I flew into Los Angeles (LAX) airport to spend time with his family. It was a very short trip, San Jose to L.A. on Saturday morning, returning early Sunday afternoon. Very short, but hey better than driving, right? I think we did more "riding around" in the airports more than we did when we drove in our rental car and our final destination! We had flown to Vegas last year, but apparently, I'm getting rusty, (or just old) when it comes to airports. Remember I was the one leaving Portugal with a bottle of Cognac in my carry on.. DUH.. A big NO NO!

Well, when we got to San Jose Mineta International, we decided to park in the long term parking. Good thing we were parked in section C, than section S. The "trolley" bus went through the alphabet with this annoying woman's recorded voice at each lettered section. "You are now entering Parking Lot section "D"...etc...etc.." All that took a good 15 minutes of driving in circles. Imagine having that job--driving around a parking lot in circles, listening to that annoying woman's voice, over and over again. I tell you, that must be pure hell.

Once we got to the airport, I got my e-tickets printed at the kiosk--that was simple enough, and off we went to our "favorite place" -- SECURITY. What a lovely working crew that was. I'm sorry, but the people working there are just plain mean. I'm sure they are just lovely people outside of the airport. Perhaps, they have to be "mean" for the job? I know people who work inside a jail--it comes with the territory, but must I always feel like a criminal when I go through security?

"Take off your shoes, and any metal items, and put it in the plastic container.."

Simple enough, right?

"Lady, that includes your jacket.."

Okay, I put my jacket in there, and walk through the security, so glad I wasn't wearing a belt. People wearing belts, were undressing all over the place, in the undressing area. Men and women holding their pants, barefoot, disoriented.. It's easy to feel a little humiliation. Remind me to where flip flops next time!

Other than that, I love airports. I don't know exactly why, but ever since I was younger I've always had the attraction. The atmosphere, the mood, the people. I remember sitting there watching people go by-some of them running, some of them walking, some happy, some sad.. Sometimes on a occasion you may even see a celebrity, most of the time not. It's a great place to "people watch".

Well, we got ourselves near our departure gate, and I got a bagel, and we just sat there waiting, and relaxed in front of Noah's Bagels when we hear the "last call" for our flight. Last call?! What happened to our FIRST CALL?! Well, luckily we were near the gate, and by the time we got on the plane, we were the last ones so we didn't have to wait in line. The plane was small, but we couldn't see the pilot from our seat like the time we flew to Vegas, so that was good.

After a 45 minute flight, we touched down on at LAX, and off to another trolley for our rental car, where we were "entertained" non-stop by the guy sitting near us at the back of the bus, who was talking to his friend on his cellphone and then to his "baby's momma" for another 20 minutes. It's interesting how some people don't really care how much personal stuff they reveal about themselves when talking on a phone. When we got to the rental car line at Avis, he was still talking to his "baby's momma" behind us in line for another 15 minutes. I still remember a lot of the conversation, I feel I could write a book about this guy's life. I feel like I know the guy, but again, I don't even know his name.

We got a sweet ride.. A beautiful red Camaro....very nice, after you get used to the seemingly small front window. We stayed in beautiful Marina Del Rey, and our sister-inlaw's house is in Venice. We drove only a gallon worth of gasoline to and from to her house. A good maybe 10 minutes..

When we left the next day for home, we dropped of the pretty Camaro at the rental car place, and got into another trolley--another 10 minute drive to the airport. I got stopped at security for carrying a bottle of water in my purse. Damn. DUH. We were early, and decided to just stay near our gate. Little did we know our gate was in a separate location. So, we had to get into yet another trolley bus, another 5 minute drive to a gate that looked like a shack from the outside. We waited a hour there eating cafeteria, bland sandwiches at the only little food place that was there. Did I mention how cold it was? It was cold.

We finally got into the plane, and chose to be the last ones on the plane this time. Why wait in a line again? Yes, we were anxious to get home, but we were tired. Once we got home to San Jose, back in the parking lot trolley to our long term parking, and the annoying woman and her monotone voice: "You are now entering Section..." A strange woman with a straw hat covering her face wearing long knee high socks came in and sat near Rich. She smelled like Vapor Rub. Another 10 minutes on that trolley...

Damn it was great to get home! We had a fun time at Marina del Rey with the family-a nice birthday surprise. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera so I have no pictures with family. We took a wharf walk up and down the marina, where there are hotels and aparments overlooking the harbor. We stayed at the Ritz Carlton-definitely the most nicest hotels I've EVER been at. Great weekend-which we stayed longer.

Our view from our balcony

By the way, I read this in the news---so happens it was at the apartment buildings we passed on our walk near the Marina, about a man found dead sitting on the balcony:

Thank God we didn't see this guy!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Over The Top..

I'm a little late with this, but Wini nominated me for an Over the Top award! Thank you!! Play along! The rules of this award are as follows:

~Answer the questions below using only one word
~Thank the blogger who gave it to you: Thank you, Wini!
~Pass it on to 4 other bloggers---put consider yourselves all included!

So, on with the questions:

1. Where is your cell phone? Purse

2.Your hair? Ponytail

3. Your mother? Home

4. Your father? Heaven

5. Your favorite food? Cheese

6. Your dream last night? Silly

7. Your favorite drink? Margarita

8. Your dream/goal? Retire

9. What room are you in? Livingroom

10. Your hobby? Family

11. Your fear? Sickness

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Ocean

13. Where were you last night? Car

14. Something you aren't? Jealous

15. Muffins? Blueberry

16. Wish list item? Paint

17. Where did you grow up? Santa Cruz

18. Last thing you did? Ate

19. What are you wearing? Jeans

20. Your TV? Big

21. Your pets? Gone :(

22. Your friends? Thankful

23. Your life? Good

24. Your mood? Lazy!

25. Missing someone? Always :(

26. Vehicle? Van

27. Something you're not wearing? Socks! (My feet are freezing!)

28. Your favorite store? Ross (Treasure hunt city..)

29. Your favorite color? Red

30. When was the last time you laughed? Morning

31. Last time you cried? Morning (laughed until I cried..does that count?)

32. Your best friend? Rich

33. One place that I go over and over? Mom's.

34. One person who emails me regularly? Floreen

35. Favorite place to eat? Home

Well, I've had a busy week... Currently, it looks like son Andrew has caught on to what Nick had, what I had, and what Richard had. :( Throw up city once again. Lizzy wasn't feeling too well the other day, but no throw up episode which is good, because Rich and I left on a little mini weekend away to meet with his family in Venice Beach. Despite Rich not feeling 100% we did manage to have a great time with his family at my father-inlaw's surprise birthday bash at the "Louella Country Club"! It was great! It started with Bloody Mary's on the terrace overlooking the yacht harbor in Marina Del Rey, at the Ritz Carlton.. BEAUTIFUL HOTEL, I may add.... Will post some pictures as soon as I can find the cord for my camera--I haven't seen it since Lizzy's tampon photo shoot..

The sun is finally shining through the window right now, and it completely different than it did yesterday. We had 60 mph winds over there, with very HEAVY rain. I don't know what I was thinking driving over the mountains yesterday morning. It was raining, cats and dogs, and various farm animals. I wasn't expecting to see a stalled car facing the opposite direction in the fast lane either. I let out a scream, and drove with both hands on the wheel--we are talking white knuckle city. It hardly rained today, and that is good---there is a lot of mud out there just waiting to slide down the mountain. Fortunately, we don't live close to that area, so we are good.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

No More Holes In The Wall!

I came home to nicely patched up walls! I no longer can see pipes! I'm so happy! Things are getting back to normal, despite all the sheet rock dust...

I'm happy to report that I am feeling almost 100% better now. Hubby still isn't at that point yet, but he is better than he was yesterday. We can now look forward to the weekend! We are leaving Saturday morning, LAX bound so we can spend some time with Rich's family. His step-dad is turning the big 75, and we are going to surprise him at my sister-in-law's house along with Rich's other siblings. It should be a lot of fun---need to take my camera. We are staying at a really nice hotel in Marina del Rey.. Almost wish we were staying for a longer period of time, but it will be fun to just get away for awhile.

I must tell you something about my tooth pain. It is gone! I accredit it all to the miracle drug elixer of warm salt water. I am not kidding---it works so well---there is nothing better! I cannot believe I forgot about it! I swear upon it now! After taking it, the pain almost immediately went away. My son tried it for himself this evening because he was complaining of a canker sore. He laughed when I suggested it, but now, he is also a true believer! "Mom! My mouth doesn't hurt anymore!" Nothing like the old fashioned water and salt...oh, and yes, whiskey works too.

Halloween is soon upon us, and Nicholas has announced what he wants his costume to be: A Magician. I don't know where he got that idea, but it will work. All I need is a top hat, and a black cape, and a wand... I tried to convince him to be a wizard, but he insists on being a magician--his mind is set on it, so magician it will be!

I mentioned on Facebook that Lizzy was doing a photo shoot in the front yard for tampons. I wasn't kidding... Here is the picture:

(Hey, I'm holding the yellow poster board behind Lizzy if you are wondering..)

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Looking forward to the weekend...

Well, it's been an interesting week...

Between the various strange men that have "invaded" our home, tearing up the walls, putting in the new copper pipes,and Nicholas coming home with a terrible stomach virus, my week has been a combination of bathroom visits (running towards the sink because I'm going to puke) with intermediate runs to the toilet, and misplaced furniture and Avon boxes I've have around for storage. Nick got sick, I got it, and then husband got it. I think I have had an average 3 to 4 hour night's sleep the last 4 days. The bathrooms are a mess, and I have holes in my walls. This all makes me feel, I don't know---unbalanced--I hate disorganization! I like things neat, and their place! To top it off, I went to the dentist a few weeks ago and got a filling for a tooth that wasn't bothering me. Suddenly this tooth, that they "fixed" is hurting me! I don't know if it's my gums, or what... I dragged myself to work today, and I thought I was feeling better, until boss lady said:

"Oh Julie, you look horrible!"

Lovely. I was told to go home--so I did-not until I looked in the mirror a dozen times to really see if I looked that way. My mom said my eye looked swollen, and that I was looking a little "sonhsa" : Portuguese slang meaning: tired looking. Lovely.. By mid-day I felt like a troll.

Speaking of trolls, I apparently have one...ain't that special? Someone really needs a new hobby--that is all I'm going to say.

Well, I'm hoping for things to change because we have plans for the weekend. (Keeping fingers crossed..) Hopefully by the end of the week, the holes will be patched up, and the pipes will pass inspection, so by next week we can start painting! YAY! No longer will we have those nasty rusty pipes! No more rust stains to scrub off in the bath tub! YAY! I took a look of the old ones that they took out, and it was really disgusting/scary to see how much rust have accumlated throughout the years...

Today I went home after the suggestion of my boss lady, and picked up Nicholas. We came home to find husband laying on the couch sleeping, so I went upstairs and "cleaned things up" from last night's episode of bathroom runs. Despite the holes and the towels covering the holes up, things are tidy again, and disinfected for another day until the "men" come to patch up the walls. Another round of dust is coming. They do cover everything up with plastic, but dust has a way of getting everywhere. So, I will try and stay positive, because that is all I can do, right? Tomorrow is Wednesday--the week is almost over! Saturday we will all be feeling well, and we will ENJOY our weekend!