Thursday, December 30, 2010

Nooks, Frackin' and Jank

My two favorite words right now are "frackin'" and "jank." Frackin' is the equivilant of freakin' and friggin' and I plan to use it alot in 2011. I'm not really sure what jank means but I sure do like saying it. You can also use "janky" and "janked" (i.e., "OMG! That is just so janky!" or "if she keeps using a passy at 4 years old, her teeth are going to be janked.").

Cosmo & The Girls gave me a Barnes & Noble gift card for Christmas to put toward the purchase of a Nook or toward some books. I had been on the fence for a while about an e-Reader and did some research on both the Kindle and the Nook. Last night KJ, Cosmo & I went to Barnes & Noble and got a demo on the Nook. And ended up walking out of there w/ the Color Nook. It is too frackin' cool. I haven't bought any books yet but I have been searching for titles and adding them to my wish list.
Last night was the season premiere of Toddlers & Tiaras. Holy cow what a hot mess. This little girl, Makenzie, is totally and completely, absolutely, positively out of control. And I love every minute of it. She is a train wreck waiting to happen and I can't look away. This kid is 4 going on 44. She has the thickest, heaviest Southern accent I have ever heard and has an adorable raspy, smoky voice. She sounds like a 3-pack a day smoker. And in the middle of all her melt-downs, her mother remains pretty frackin' calm. She's either on horse tranquilizers or some heavy-duty quaaludes. The other little girl they featured, Danielle, is going to have some serious insecurity issues when she gets older. She must have mentioned how pretty or beautiful she was at least 10 to 15 times. If genetics are a factor, she's going to be in for major disappointments in life. Her mom was gigantic. This is also the 8-year old girl who said she is going to trash her hotel room if she doesn't win and also carried on about another child "stealing her spotlight." Sheesh

Monday, December 27, 2010

Post Christmas

Two days after Christmas and I'm totally dreading de-holiday-tizing the house. I love putting decorations up; hate taking everything down. So much easier to unpack stuff than it is to pack it back up. Each of the girls have their own ornaments and I think this is the year they are old enough to box up their own ornaments off the tree.

We had a nice, relaxing, kind of quiet Christmas. Believe it or not we actually got some snow on Sunday. It snowed/sleeted a bit on Saturday and then snowed until 1 or 2 PM on Sunday. It was SO nice. Kind of felt like home there for a minute. KJ, of course, loved it. We all just kind of loafed around all weekend in our jammies and watched some movies and watched the snow. Cosmo woke up kind of early Sunday morning and ran out to get the essentials in case we were snowed in . . . bagels and peppermint ice cream. I really like a man who plans ahead.

The girls have had a good Christmas break so far. KJ spent the night w/ a friend last night and they went to the movies today. T met Cosmo for lunch and then worked at the lax store for a bit. She's out to dinner and a movie with friends tonight. KJ's enjoying the new phone she got for Christmas and T's wearing her new boots tonight. Both girls got lots of clothes and several gift cards. They LOVE gift cards.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Scariest week of my life

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one." -- Jane Howard

So Christmas Eve is finally here! I've already got my breakfast casserole made so I can pop it iin the oven tomorrow morning while we open presents. Tonight's dinner is shrimp scampi and tomorrow we will have a spiral ham. KJ & I plan to make snickerdoodles today, red velvet cupcakes and Muddy Buddies. I still have some present to wrap but all of my Christmas cards are out. I haven't mailed my brother's family presents yet or my friend Lisa. I feel bad but I think they will understand.
Spent last week in FL and it certainly wasn't a pleasure trip. My dad had a heart attack, or, I should say a series of heart attacks late Saturday night/early Sunday morning and my brother and I were able to rush down there Sunday afternoon while he was still in surgery. Not gonna lie. It was rough. Don't want to bore everyone with the details but he did have emergency double by-pass surgery and came thru with flying colors! The staff at the hospital was amazing and my mom & dad's snowbird Florida friends were incredible.
So, we have a lot to be thankful for this Christmas and I'm looking foward to being with my family. I wish my folks could be here too but given the circumstances, I'm glad they are in Florida!

Sunday, December 19, 2010


Only a week after double-bypass surgery, my dad's playing a full 18 wholes in Naples!!
Nah!!! JK. This was taken the day before his heart attck.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The lighter side of Stephen King & Some Questions

“You can’t deny laughter; when it comes, it plops down in your favorite chair and stays as long as it wants.” -- Stephen King

What an interesting quote by Stephen King. Who knew he had a nicer, fluffier side?

Really looking forward to the weekend! Other than taking the girls to see some of their friends perform in the Nutcracker on Saturday and a lax clinic on Sunday @ the high school, this family has NO major plans. No Friday night football games! I know T is so stoked. She hasn't a free Friday night since school started. And do you know what this means for me??? No Buccanette boots to clean!!!! Whoop! Whoop!

Got a lot of shopping done last night. My mom has selected a Vera Bradley pattern so I went to Wrapsody to find it. Unfortunately the Hoover store was out of it so they are getting it from their Auburn store. T's sweet, sweet friend Molly helped me. She is such a lovely young lady and it has been a pleasure watching her grow up. KJ bought me my annual Vera Bradley ornament while we were in the store and Molly helped her pick it out and wrap it up. I also went to Dick's Sporting Goods, Justice, Barnes & Noble and Wolf Camera. KJ & I met Cosmo for dinner and had a nice evening.

T had some friends over last night after the high school basketball game. So glad she feels comfortable having kids over and it's so important to know who her friend's are. Cosmo & I were snuggled on the couch when they all came in and a couple of the boys were laxers. I think it was weird for them to see Coach in his natural habitat.

A friend sent these random questions for me to answer on my blog so here goes:

1. What do you order at Starbucks?
I don't drink coffee but whenever I go into Starbucks during the winter season with the girls, I get a peppermint hot chocolate.

2. Where is your favorite place to eat breakfast?
I haven't been to a good brunch in a long, long time (Cosmo & I used to go ALL the time when we lived in NY) so I guess Panera would be my best answer.

3. Are you on Twitter? Why or why not?
Yes! I love Twitter! @AlabamaValerie

4. What is your favorite Christmas movie?
I have a couple (who can choose just one???): National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Elf, The Polar Express, Christmas with the Kranks and Christmas Story.

5. Are you a good gift giver?
Um, I think so. No one's ever complained.

6. Do you like your handwriting? Bonus points for posting a picture.
I have extremely large handwriting that tilts to one side. It's very unique and so large that my husband says I write for the blind.

7. Is your signature legible? Bonus points for posting a picture.

8. Have you ever been to New York during Christmas season?

9. Are there any items that you are completely brand loyal?
For 9 years I worked for the company that made Lysol products so I usually stay with what I know. I only buy Woolite, Clorox bleach, Heinz ketchup, Breakstone's Sour Cream, Philly cream cheese, etc. I usually don't buy the store brand of anything. One day the hubby brought home some crap brand of pepperoni and the girls & I FREAKED and refused to eat it.

10. Who is your favorite public speaker?
This is going to sound really cheesy but I really enjoying listening to Champ when he talks to kids/parents about lacrosse. He's very knowledgeable and very passionate and really loves what he's doing. And the girls & I are very proud of him.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Got a sicky home w/ me today. KJ's been complaining about a sore throat and a headache since Sunday night. She had a slight fever this morning. I've been filling her up with liquids and ibuprofen and hope to nip this in the bud.

The next couple of weeks are going to be super busy. We've got a bunch of holiday parties to go to this year (fun! fun! fun!) and my folks will be here for Christmas. We've also got some mini-vacations planned over Christmas break that we're really looking foward to.

Getting a lot done the last couple of days. The house is decorated. I went with a minimalist look on the mantle this year and did a modern red vase and mismatched crystal candlesticks with white tapers and tons and tons of tealights in various crystal and red votives. I also added a large cylinder vase with river rocks and white branches on the marble hearth. It's different than what I've done in year's past, not sure if I like it yet. It's growing on me. I also bought a new dining room tablecloth this year (red w/ white snowflakes) and crisp white linen napkins. Large lidded vases on the dining room table filled with candy. Both trees are up and decorated and Cosmo and KJ did all the outside lights and wreaths.

Monday night the girls & I met Cosmo for dinner before he met up w/ his buds to watch the Jets vs. New England (Jets lost BTW). The girls & I got some shopping done. Not much but I've got some good ideas. I am at a total loss this year. T is always super easy to buy for. We have similar tastes in some things . . . we both love good handbags, expensive perfume, accessories, shoes. KJ is at a very difficult stage. She's not a little girl anymore, not a teenager yet. She's had one of those "go" phones since the summer but would like to upgrade to a "real" phone. She'd also like a Flip video cameras. I'm also have a hard time w/ Cosmo this year. I used to be able to buy him cool lacrosse stuff. Well, that's kind of hard to do when he owns his own store and can order whatever he wants.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My Little Elf and Bama Belles

Have a few minutes before I head out the door to go watch T perform at halftime of tonight's basketball game. I can't wait! Tonight they are doing their Christmas dance and it was one of my favorite costumes when she was on the Freshman Dance Team. They look like Rockettes. I think the Bnettes costume is a little different than the FDT but still red velvet with white furry trim. They will also be doing this dance at Thursday's pep rally in preparation for the big championship game Friday night in Auburn.

Just saw a promo on TLC for a new reality show titled Bama Belles. I didn't catch the whole commercial but it airs Sunday night. All I heard KJ say was "Oh jeez." In all honesty, I've heard of Dothan but have no idea where it is. I don't think I could find it on a map of Alabama. I like reality TV but I don't like when people make a career of it. For instance, one of the women on this new show has also appeared in another show (I think it was the Great American Road Show -- maybe families traveled across the country in RV's???). If you've appeared in more than one reality show, you obviously crave the spotlight.

KJ's been packing for the last several days for her trip to Dauphin Island with her class. She is so incredibly excited it's not even funny. She's rooming w/ one of her friends from her class and I think they're going to have a good time. Hope the weather improves for them. She's given T strict instructions on how to feed her fish. Which is really kind of ironic because she only has 1 fish left.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Monday's gonna come fast and hard

Tomorrow is going to hit me like a ton of bricks. I've had the most wonderful 5 days off and can totally get used to working a 2-day work week. Don't get me wrong, I luv, luv, luv my job but it was very very nice being home.

T usually attends lax tournaments w/ Champ but this week was KJ's turn. We switched kids so to speak and I got in some quality time w/ T which is very rare. The poor kid literally hit the ground running this week and has a crazy couple of days. She flew to FL w/ Cosmo last Friday and played a bunch of games in Naples on Saturday and Sunday. She heard about Natalie's accident at the airport on Monday and went straight to the studio Monday night. Tuesday she spent the day collecting photos from friends and made a couple of collages to take to Natalie's service on Wednesday. Wednesday she was at the church a couple of hours before the service and afterward she & Caroline went out for a bite to eat. Thursday was Thanksgiving and Friday morning she worked at the lax store for the better half of the day and watched some of the Iron Bowl with friends before heading to the Met for the Hoover vs. Mt Brook game.

Yesterday we did a little shopping, had a late lunch at California Pizza Kitchen, did some more shopping and then she went out with her friend James for the evening. He always calls her when he comes home from college. The mall was positively PACKED and the shoe department at Belks looked like a BOMB went off. It was a disaster area. Shoes every where, boxes every where. Whew. I would not like to clean up that mess! T bought a hot pair of brown booties at Belk, a sweater and handbag from Francesca's and a cardigan and scarf from Aeropostle. I also bought my nephew some Star Wars Lego stuff and T & I had so much fun in the Lego store. Our store clerk was waaaaaayyy too into his job and was really goofy.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Recap

Quote of the Day: "The best thing to do with the best things in life is to give them up." -- Dorothy Day

Had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday. As I always say, I love having "all my chicks in the nest." Even though Cosmo is not a "chick" I'm talking about him, too when I say that.

This year's turkey was magnificent. I think each year just keeps getting better and better. Everything was timed PERFECTLY and the girls were a big help. KJ washed the potatoes and T peeled them and then KJ mashed them. The crescent rolls were in the oven while Cosmo was carving and our dutch apple pie was baking while we were eating. Just a wonderful, very relaxing day.

Today I plan to take down all my Thanksgiving decorations, wash everything, move furniture around, clean, etc. and then Saturday & Sunday I'll decorate for Christmas. KJ & Cosmo are going to ATL for a lax tournament (duh. I mean really. What else would he be doing on a weekend???) so T will be hope to help (although she doesn't know it yet!). She's up at the lax store working w/ Cosmo today and then has to get ready for tonight's game.

In case you've been living under a rock, or don't live in the state of Alabama, today is the big Iron Bowl match-up. I'd really like to see Alabama beat them this year. Although we don't necessarily dislike Auburn, I'd like to quiet some of the Auburn fans this year. After the Alabama/Auburn game we'll be heading to the Met for the Hoover vs. Mt Brook game. Round 3 of high school state championships.

T went to Natalie's services on Wednesday and came home positively drained....emotionally and physically. She thought she could handle it alone and sat with her girlfriends from the dance studio (we jokingly refer to them as the Dance Mafia). She called me afterward and said, "Mom, I'm just cried out. I don't think I have any more tears in me."

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Sad, Sad day in Hoover Yesterday

(written on Tuesday):

Yesterday was not a good day at all. One of T's good friends from the dance studio was killed Monday morning in a HORRIBLE car crash. T & Natalie have been dancing together about 4 or 5 years now.

There are still some missing pieces to the story and a lot of rumors and speculation but somehow Natalie and a friend were out driving in the early morning hours, lost control of the car and hit a telephone pole. Natalie was pronounced dead at the scene and Sydney was found outside the vehicle. She is at the hospital with burns but they do not think her injuries are life threatening. To make matters worse, Sydney’s dad is in the fire department and was one of the first responders. Natalie was only 15 and Sydney, the driver, was 16. Both girls were sophomores.

The accident happened about a mile from the hotel so I passed by the scene on my way in Monday morning and mentioned it to some of the folks in my office. Cosmo & T were at the Ft. Myers airport coming home from a lax tournament and she was getting tweets about some Hoover girls in an accident but didn’t have any names. Someone at the hotel has some connections and made a couple of discreet phone calls. He told me the two girls names but not to say anything because it wasn't official. Recognizing Natalie's name, I instantly called my husband and told him what I had heard. I thought he had told T. Instead, he was “preparing” her and told her it doesn’t sound good. T called me from the airport and said, “Mom everyone’s saying it was Natalie.” I told her yes and thought she understood that Natalie had passed away. She was under the impression Natalie was still alive and called Ms. Shannon @ the studio. Ms. Shannon was the one who told her the bad news and T basically collapsed to the floor in the middle of the airport. It was bad. She was inconsolable. She was a total mess. I actually told Cosmo to buy a nip of brandy on the plane to calm her down a bit. She was that bad. Some sweet little old black lady whipped out an entire roll of paper towels and held T's hand and let T sob all over her.

T got off the plane in Bham and went straight to the studio. Ms. Shannon, the dance teacher, opened the studio for the girls last night and there were a lot of tears but also some nice memories of Natalie. It was very, very sweet to see the girls from all different area schools come together in honor of Natalie. They wrote letters to Natalie's parents to let them know how special Natalie was. Every parent, every teacher, every friend who has posted something about Natalie on Facebook has commented on how sweet she was, how she always had a smile on her face and was a generally happy-go-lucky young lady. T said she had never heard Natalie say a bad word about anyone.

I just keep thinking of Natalie’s mother. She sent her daughter to a sleep-over, never in a million years thinking she’d never see her daughter again. I guarantee you, last night every parent in Hoover had a talk with their kids: “Do you see why I’m So tough on you? Do you understand why I ask you to call me when you get there?" I know we did.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Christmas is in the Air

Today I finished up our Christmas cards. And by that I mean I finalized the photo(s), layout, font, wording, etc. Now they just have to be printed. They turned out awesome if I do say so myself. This is one of my favorite photos from our photo session but didn't use it in our card. I love the way the sun is highlighting the girl's hair and faces and KJ was actually smiling in this picture. She was a total pain in the rear that day.
Found out today that my folks are coming for Christmas. My brother & his family will be with them for Thanksgiving so they decided to come here for Christmas rather than fly home to PA. This way they get to see both of their children and grandchildren for the holidays. It's a win-win.
KJ & I are watching Buddy The Elf and cracking up. We've seen this movie HUNDREDS of times and can repeat it word for word. Will Ferrell cracks me up and James Caan is perfect as the straight guy. There are so many classic lines in this movie, "Buddy the Elf. What's your favorite color??"
I'm really looking foward to cooking on Thursday. My menu is set and most of my grocery shopping is done. I'm in full-on Thanksgiving mode and don't undertand how people can decorate the house for Christmas when we haven't even had Thanksgiving yet. I really don't get it. I luv, luv, luv Thanksgiving and need to keep my holidays seperate. No overlapping.

Friday, November 19, 2010


Bunch of hoopla this week about the TSA, body scans, searches, etc. On Saturday, a would-be passenger refused a body pat-down with the now infamous phrase: "if you touch my junk I'm going to have you arrested." Also in the news recently, a 3 or 4 year old little girl set off the alarms twice at security checkpoint this week. I forgot which airport but Hoda & Kathie Lee talked about it this week. I guess the pa-down got a little aggressive and they (Hoda & Kathie Lee) mentioned something about her stuffed animals being molested.

That story reminded me of the time we were traveling home to Bham from our niece's wedding in NY. KJ was still in pre-school; it was the April before she started kindergarten. T must have been 6 or 7th grade. Anyway, she's had this stuff dog named Biscuit since was a toddler. My friend Carol bought it for her and Biscuit has gone EVERYWHERE with us. So, the four of us, the typical All-American family, are going thru the security check at JFK. Seriously, I think we were the only ones on line who spoke English. We were surrounded by foreigners. It's JFfreakin'K. Guess which travelers get cherry-picked for a pat-down? Yup. TSA pulled the four of us off the line, went through all our bags, the girls backpacks, everything and did a body search. KJ got very, very upset. They were actually prodding Biscuit and at one point I really thought they were going to cut him open right in front of us. KJ started crying "they're hurting him!!!" Honestly, when we were finally buckled in our seats on the plane, I told Cosmo that Biscuit totally got violated.

As a side note: To avoid a MAJOR melt-down in case Biscuit was ever misplaced or God forbid, STOLEN, I purchased a duplicate dog years and years ago. It's hidden in a ziploc baggy in my closet perfectly preserved. Recently at a friend's baby shower we were discussing "loveys" and what to do if they get lost or raggedy. I mentioned the duplicate Biscuit. T was shocked at this revelation and had no idea I was so duplicitous. hahaha

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

She's Lovely

I think his mother would be proud.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


The town/city of Auburn is interested in starting a youth lacrosse league. A couple of months ago a group of parents got together, contacted Champ and asked if he would help get things started. So, today he & T are headed to Auburn to do a mini-lacrosse clinic. I don't think T was originally planning to go but last night the parent heading things up mentioned they expect a bunch of little girls. I think they are going to have a good turn-out. Mr. French also called Champ yesterday and said he heard about the clinic even though they live in Montgomery and he was going to bring the last of the French kids . . . 5 boys, all named w/ B's. Brye, Blake & Brayden all played at Hoover.

Poor Cosmo. The last words he said to me as he was walking out the door were: "I think the worst thing that could ever happened to me would be if I had a massive heart attack today and died on the turf at Auburn." I know he's semi-kidding (he doesn't hate Auburn by any means, he's actually a BIG Cam Newton supporter; he's "just not that into" Auburn. They're just not his "team."). I know many men (and some women!) who would "love" to die on the field at Jordan-Hare, however my husband is not one of them. On the ice at Madison Square Garden during a Rangers game, yes. In the end-zone of the new Jets stadium, for sure. On the lacrosse field, no doubt. Auburn, eh, not so much.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

hate to cook but love to entertain, why is that?

I hate to cook. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. I can NOT stand cooking dinner day in and day out. Especially when we're on the go and it has to be something quick. Hubby's picky and only likes certain vegetables, daughter #2 doesn't like lasagna or baked ziti (gasp!). Daughter #1 LOVES read meat. I'm the only one who really likes salads but I don't like my vegetables cooked. I only like raw veggies and I'm not a chicken fan.

Having said that, I love to entertain and LOVE to have people over. And, I do like to cook when I have the time. When I'm not rushed and all my chicks are in the nest and we have a nice family day and everyone likes what I make. In other words, the conditions have to be just right and the moon and the stars have to be in perfect alignment.

Today I've had pulled pork in the crockpot all day and the house smells incredible. It's such a great easy recipe and one of those things were you just throw a bunch of weird stuff in the crockpot and it turns out delicious! I also got really ambitious and made a New Orleans Best Dessert Ever (a pecan mixture crust, vanilla ice cream and a fudge topping). Champ put one of the smaller TV's out on the deck and he & KJ have been watching some football out there in between removing the rest of her wallpaper, spackling and priming. T has had 5 or 6 hours of lacrosse today and I'm sure her knees are screaming between that and yesterday's pep rally and last night's game.

Started doing my Thanksgiving dinner shopping and have started thinking about decorating the house for Christmas. Every year I try to mix things up a bit and I came across these incredible Christmas dishes by Vietri. If I didn't already have complete service for 12 and every serving piece ever made in my pattern, I'd be all over these dishes. Totally my style!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Pep Rally Time!

Kind of like Pauly D yelling "T-shirt time," huh???

Today is the last football pep rally and it should be a GREAT one! Playing cross - town rivals tonight @ the Met, second time this year these two teams have met (no pun intended). I've been sick the last two days but promised T I'd be there to video tape the pep rally. The freshmen dance team is performing with the B'nettes and they've all worked hard. I think I'm going to check daughter #2 out of school so she can enjoy the festivities. I don't think I'm in any condition to sit at the game tonight so I will just have to enjoy my twitter updates and stay tuned to Whoever does the twitter udpates does an awesome job (I think it's one of the player's dads) adn he's totally on top of the action!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I heart My Daughters

I love my two daughters. I truly do. I am so proud of them, particularly daughter #1. She was in an uncomfortable situation recently and rose above the drama and acted like a poised, confident young woman. They are both at such fun ages, we have a lot of laughs, a lot of silly goodness. A lot of heart-to-heart talks. I'm not trying to be one of those mom's who wants to be her kid's friend but they know they can tell me anything. I may not always like what they have to say, but I will always listen.

T & I have this "thing" where we text each other random quotes throughout the day. Sometimes they are historical, sometimes they are inspirational. Sometimes it's words to a song, sometimes it's a line from a movie. It's just our "thing." The other day I saw the funniest quote I think I've ever seen and still get a little giggle when I think about it. I know this isn't very "PC" but please don't hold it against me....."Sometimes your knight in shining armor is really just a retard in aluminum foil."
To follow is an actual text message convo between me and daughter #2:
KJ: "Mom!! Snooki died!"
Me: "What???!!!"
KJ: "You know! Snooki my fish"
Me: "I didn't realized you had fish named Snooki"
KJ: "Yeah, she had a big black fin and always hit the glass like she was drunk so I named her Snooki."
Seriously. I love my daughters.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Reality Bites

I think I have a problem. Last night I realized I am addicted to reality TV and the History channel. I was scrolling thru my recorded shows on our Uverse (which has taken me a while to get used to; thousands of channels!) and 50% of the shows I watch are reality. I don't like shows about finding love (i.e., the Bachelor/Bachelorette) but I watch ALL of the Real Housewives shows . . . Atlanta (I just want NeNe to get her "happy" back), NY, Bev Hills (not my fave), NJ (quite possibly my fave), OC and DC. I like Brett Michaels' new show (but never really liked the Rock of Love shows; can you say "ew??") and I enjoy Football Wives (I think it's on VH1; it's about the wives of some of the Dallas Cowboys) and I also like Making the Team (Squad?) on CMT (it's about the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders). I also like Amazing Race. We used to religiously watch Survivor but not so much lately. Sometimes I catch Dancing w/ the Stars but not addicted and don't even record it. On the other hand, I guess I balance out the reality crap with some History channel for my brain.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Rings and Torches

Got a new phone a couple of weeks ago. I really loved my Blackberry Pearl. It was lightweight, slim, pink and oh so very girly with a paisly back cover. But the roller ball was constantly getting stuck and the last couple of weeks it would just randomly turn off and wouldn't hold a charge. So, I went down to the AT&T store with the intentions of buying another Blackberry Pearl. Took one look at the new Torch and I was hooked. Yes, I fell hard. For a phone. I'm so not a tech-y, gadget-y kind of person so my love affair with my new phone is kind of strange (I'm so behind the times, I just got an iPod for Mother's Day this year). I do have a Garmin in the car and a Sirius radio but have never been one to keep up with the latest and greatest (the Garmin and the Sirium were gifts from the hubster). Cosmo keeps eye-balling my phone and actually told me the other day that he was jealous. He totally covets my Torch.

Tbone is a junior this year and the other day we talked about class rings. She said she doesn't want one, she'll never wear it. She's right. She likes jewelry but she's more of an accessory kind of gal, not a sentimental one. Tonight I dug mine and Cosmo's high school rings out of the jewelry box and we took a walk down memory lane. I don't think either of the girls had ever seen our rings. Back then I remember thinking his ring was HUGE (compared to the size of his wedding ring and the Hoover Lacrosse Championship rings they ordered this past ring, his high school ring now looks like it would fit a girl). But tonight when I looked at my ring, I was amazed at how tiny my ring finger actually was! I think my ring size back then was a 4 (if I remember correctly, we ordered the rings end of sophomore year and wore them junior & senior year. It was a big deal; we had a ring ceremony and everything). My ring had cheerleading on one side, the North Rockland logo and graduation year on the other. My stone was a Sapphire, my birthstone. The words "North Rockland High School" encircle the stone. I had totally forgotten that my name was engraved in script on the inside. So weird to see my maiden name after all these years! I graduated in '85 and remember my grandmother gave me money for the ring so I could get the 14K instead of sterling silver. Of course, the first words out of KJ's mouth were, "When you die, can I have this???" So, I'm hoping T doesn't regret her decision not to buy a ring. Maybe she'll be more interested in a college ring. I hope she has something to pass on to her children someday.

Saturday, October 30, 2010


KJ's b-day money was burning a hole in her pocket so while Champ was at the W&L Lax clinic last night, KJ & did a little retail damage at our local Justice store. She had $55 in gift cards and I had $60 in fun cards or J-bucks or whatever the heck they're called. Still managed to do $120 worth of damage to my Visa. She bought jeans, a couple of long-sleeve layering-type shirts, some cami's, some bras and underwear, a sweater and a shirt. She put half of her b-day money in the bank and last week she bought cowboy boots with what was left over. All of her jeans are bootleg cut and don't fit when she tucks the jeans in the boots. So last night we were on the hunt for "skinny" jeans. The Justice brand fit her very well.

After shopping we had a nice dinner at one of the local Mexican restaurants and Champ ended up joining us halfway thru the meal. The W&L lax camp was going very well and Coach McCabe had everything under control so Cosmo snuck out a few minutes early. :-)
Last night the Bucs played Bob Jones in Huntsville. T said it was freezing! She had her warm-up suit but forgot a pair of gloves. The poor thing got in late last night and today she had to be up and out of the house for their last band competition of the season at Jacksonville State University. No telling how late she'll get home tonight.
I need to get up in the attic today. I'm missing a box of Halloween decorations. I know there is a box up there somewhere with scary decorations, lights, some ghosts that go in the yard, and some other stuff. It must be mismarked or something.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Rain, Rain & More Rain

I love it!
I love this weather.
It's so cozy.
As long as I don't have to be out in it (watching sports), I'm fine with the rain.
I love the thunder and the lightening and I sleep so good when it's storming.
I love the smell of the rain and I love the sound the wind makes.
It's easy to love a sunny, perfect day but I think it takes a different type of person to like an imperfect day.
P.S. KJ finally got some fish for her new fishtank. We've had the fish one day and already one of them has had babies. I think she counted 10 or 12 little fishes.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


It's been almost a month since I last blogged. Blogging had lost it's sparkle for me for a little bit of time but now I'm back. I really missed blogging and find it very therapeutic. A couple of friends convinced me not to let a few bad apples ruin the bunch and encouraged me to start blogging again so here goes!

The month of October has been incredibly psychotic. We've had homecoming, birthdays, anniversaries, football games, volleyball (KJ's team made it to the finals in the Catholic School league only to loose to St. Rose by 3 points), lacrosse, pep rallies, band competitions, and even some visitors. It's all good.

Weird thing happened the other day. I was introduced to a friend of a friend, we started chatting, realized we had a few things in common, blah, blah, blah. This woman made a really strange, out-of-left-field comment that left me bewildered and somewhat defensive. We started talking about our children and she mentioned she had a child at such and such pre-school. I mentioned that I had worked there for 4 years and asked which class her child was in. She told me the name of the teacher and followed it up with, "I am SO not impressed." I was caught off guard and she kind of got my back up. I don't even know the lady she was referring to so it's stupid to feel defensive but I still felt like I had to make a comment or two. This mom then followed up her comment with, "I guess the only prerequisite to work at the pre-school is to have been a mom." I'm not sure what she thought Mother's Morning Out was supposed to be (Japanese lessons? French lessons? Fencing? Classical piano instruction?). Did she think someone with a doctorate is supposed to be teaching 2 year olds? It's only late October. Play-school's been in session what? Two months at best? The kids are still in transition. For many children this is the first time they've ever been away from their mom's. They're still adjusting to being dropped off for a couple of hours. Some kids have never had to share their toys before, some kids are still a little sleepy when they come in OR they're a little sleepy after lunch and really ready for that afternoon nap. I think a parent's attitude toward play/pre-school also goes a long, long way during the transition period. Margaret and I always told our parents to "drop and run" as bad as that sounds. The kids with parents who stood in the doorway and dragged out the daily goodbye were always the one that cried each and every morning. Anyway, as I said, I don't even know the teacher in question but that mom doesn't really seem to be helping the situation. If you're that unimpressed you have a couple of options: #1 talk to the teacher and let her know your expectations #2 talk to the school director and let her know your expectations #3 pull your kid out of school and look elsewhere.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

B-day Weekend

Having a good birthday weekend. Today is a rainy dreary Sunday (my FAVORITE). The house is quiet so I thought I'd catch up on my blogging. Cosmo and KJ are running some errands and I started to get out my fall decorations and wash some of my stemware. I've got the table set for the most part; just need to finish decorating the house.
Friday Cosmo & the girls sent me a beautiful flower arrangement at's beautiful orange and yellow roses, lots of rusty color lillies, some leaves, some raffia. Totally me. Have I mentioned I love the fall and it's my favorite time of year??? The girls at the office also surprised me with a little gathering after lunch. We had a delicious cookie cake and some apples and caramel.

The girls were supposed to have lax fall ball today but it was cancelled because of the rain. So, T met up with E and the were heading to the mall to help him pick out a tie for homecoming (the big thing down here is the guys are supposed to match their ties to the girls' dresses). T's dress is such an unusual color and it's going to be hard to find something to match it. We cut out a little swatch from up underneath where no one could see and hopefully they'll be able to find something to match it.

KJ had two volleyball games yesterday and we had tickets for the 8 PM Legally Blonde @ the BJCC. We had dinner at 26 (my favorite new restaurant!) and the girls are obsessed with the bathrooms there. Yeah, the bathrooms are pretty cool. The show was SO much fun and we laughed and laughed. But now I have that "Oh my God! Oh my God You Guys" song stuck in my head.

Friday the Bucs played Gadsen City and it was the first time this season the Bucs have been scored on. My friend had an extra ticket to the "patio party" and we had a nice dinner prior to kick-off. In all the years we've lived here, I've never been to one of those events and it was fun. Immediately following the game the Buccanettes and members of the performing arts department filmed a commercial for a Wii game produced by MTV. The new game, Just Dance 2, will be released in October. If I'm understanding it correctly, there are two or three other schools up for consideration as well. It was a lot of fun and the kids did a good job. MTV also gave each kid a t-shirt and a Just Dance game.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Who walks in the door with a new TV?

I mean seriously! Who walks in the door from running some errands w/ a new TV? Champ purchased a new camcorder from Best Buy yesterday afternoon (supposedly for lacrosse purposes). He ordered it on-line so the local store sent him an e-mail letting him know it was ready for pick-up. Well, several hours after they left the house, he & KJ walked in and I knew without even batting an eyelash that he purchased a new TV for the family room. I said to KJ when they walked in the door "so, whatcha buy?" and the she replied, "Guess." Damn him anyhow. That is defiantly what I would call "an un-authorized purchase" (that's our "couples" lingo for those unnecessary-but hey!-I just couldn't resist kind of purchases).

I actually wish we had the video camera this morning for KJ's volleyball game(s). The girls played INCREDIBLE! Such a very sweet team. The Catholic school league cracks me up. They say an Our Father or a Hail Mary before each game. And then proceed to beat the crap out of their opponents. St. Rose even has some kind of "Have Mercy on Us" chant in the huddle. The POP team spanked St. Aloyuisious 2 matches in less than 25 minutes. It was crazy. Then, St. Rose played St. Aolyuisious while we had a break. The St. Rose girls served incredibly well. I was a little nervous after watching their game. Then, the Knights took the court and we had to go the full 3 games. We won the first, they won the second and then we took the third game in a total nail biter. During a time-out we could see her fooling around with her phone. Turns out she was texting us from the sidelines "OMG!!! This is SO intense!" It was pretty funny!

After volleyball we had a lovely lunch @ TipTop Grill and I did a little shoe shopping. I bought some booties that I like to wear with jeans to give me a little height. I think the correct term is "shootie." I couldn't decide between the brown pair or the black pair and ended up buying both. I'm lazy and don't like anything with zippers. I just want to slip them on and off at will. One pair was 30% off and the other was 40% off. The pair I'm currently wearing has been re-soled numerous times and are practically falling apart. Speaking of height, today I found out at that I am a full 2" taller than Snookie (she's 4'9") and I am a full 4" taller than Wee Man from Jack-Ass. So, yay me!!! (I'm 4'11").

The Hoover football team is on a total roll this year. They beat Byrnes in week #1 (14-0), Spain Park 44-0 in week #2, Oak Mountain 50-0 (week #3) and week #4 they beat Thompson 50-0. As a side note, to follow are just a few of the former Hoover football players that were on TV today playing for various schools around the country (this list is D1 only): Lowrey, Kerry Murphy, Chapman (all @ Alabama), Brandon Morgan @ Duke, Brandon Clear @ Clemson, Brian Jackson @ Oregon, John Propbst @ TN, Brian Pugh (Auburn) and Maudrecus Humphrey is @ Arkansas (and Cosmo said the punter from AK is also a Hoover kid). I'm sure I'm missing a couple (I know of at least 3 or 4 playing for Navy).

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Thursday, September 9, 2010

B-day and Hallloween

The 2 most important dates in KJ's life, her birthday and Halloween, are rapidly approaching. No lie, she plans to trick-or-treat this year as Snooki. I've already bought her the wig and a pair of white shutter shades. She has a denim mini-skirt to wear and I'm looking at a couple of shirts on e-bay (probably a t-shirt that has ITALIA written across the front). She'll borrow one of T's trucker hats and we'll cover her face in tons and tons of bronzer and do some french manicure press-on nails. All she needs is a pair of big fluffy slippers to wear.
I think we've got her b-day locked down but have to check on some dates. I luv, luv, luv throwing great b-day parties for the girls. We really go all out and try to come up with imaginative parties (T's "block party" was one of my favorites and KJ 's Halloween bash was also a big hit!). She's a 5th grader this year and wants to invite boys to her party. Should be interesting.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

I think it's time to say adieu

I really, really love blogging and have always thought of it as an electronic on-line journal. I like to blog about whatever pops into my head. However, the last couple of days I've been thinking about going private or perhaps using the FeedIt Pro so I can see EXACTLY who's reading my blog. Maybe what I should do is delete this blog and start over privately, new name, fresh start. What to do, what to do?“

True friends stab you in the front. -- Oscar Wilde
Also thinking about doing some housecleaning on FaceBook and deleting a few "frenemies" from my life. I tried to extend an olive branch to someone and possibly have a truce from the negativity that our friendship has been wallowing in the past year or so but she had other thoughts on the subject. Sad to see a friendship end but it probably is for the best. Guess it wasn't the relationship I thought it was.

"There are so few women in general who aren't completely threatened and confused by other women's success. It's very disappointing." -- Sandra Bernhard

"Frenemy" as defined by Urban Dctionary:

#1 An enemy disguised as a friend. "What do you think about frenemies?" "I say, keep your friends close, and your frenemies closer"

#2 The type of "friend" whose words or actions bring you down (whether you realize it as intentional or not). The type of friend you ought to cut off but don't cuz...they're nice... good've had good times with them. U know...they're good people that you can count on to bring you down again sometime in the near future.The friend you may or may not have cornered about their quicksand like ways and keep around because "its in the past"...and so was one minute ago. The person that will continue to bring you down until you demand better for yourself. When you ask yourself is that person my friend or enemy...they are your frenemy. Straighten em out or leave them.Don't put up with it.

#3 Someone who is both friend and enemy, a relationship that is both mutually beneficial or dependent while being competitive, fraught with risk and mistrust.
Zack is John's frenemy. They get a long in the office but both of them work on internal competing teams.

#4 Somone who you pretend to like but really you both know you hate each other. That girls is my frenemy i hate that stupid ho

#5 A "friend" / a "bad friend" who cares only about themselves. A friend who gets their way no matter the cost, and who they step on along the way. One might stay in a "frenemy" situation because they are fearful of this person. Also known as a toxic friendship. Classic example: when your best friend steals your boyfriend of three years she was a frenemy all along.

#6 A person with whom you may have a lot of fun and/or a lot in common, who also has a vile and random dark side. These relationships are worth doing a cost/benefit analysis on. Also, limiting relationships with frenemies to non-SO relationships is a must. Why? Because it’s ultimately all about them after all, and you will need to be in a position to get away from them for indefinite periods of time. Know too, that you will probably become their frenemy as well—because you won’t be able to keep from talking behind their back. If this happens, don‘t expect everyone to get it—some will wonder why this person enrages you so much and others will wonder what you see in them. It is recommended for your own safety/sanity that you limit yourself to one frenemy at any given time in your life.

#7 A portmanteau of friend and enemy; an enemy who acts like a friend. Sometimes spelled frienemy. Beware of the frenemy

#8 A person who pretends to be your friend to get connected to other people you may know and then blows you off once they are connected to your friends. They are very smooth and everyone thinks that person is great until they are eventually traded up by this person for another "better" social connection. They are social climbers and usually the social "leader" in the group. No one wants to reveal this actual frenemy for fear of backlash from the rest of the group. The frenemy will actually put you in a bad light to other people behind your back without making it seem like they are talking about you and actually spill anything you may have told them to others without making it seems they are telling a secret. Be aware of the frenemy because they will have your friends alienate you to be their friend. They are fake and although you may be a smart one to recognize them, others may not and exude praise upon them until they've been tricked by the frenemy.
Susan just told me that Vera made her sad by yelling at her for no reason. Susan said all she tried to do was tell Vera that she was wrong about changing her plans to go shopping. Do you think Susan may be Vera's frenemy? Vera hasn't said anything about the argument at all until I spoke with Vera and she stated that she tried to politely inform Susan that she was not up to go shopping without giving details about a personal situation and Susan just kept at her until she blew up. Yet Susan has told the whole group about the fiasco and everyone feels bad for Susan.

#9 A person who seems to be a friend, but takes every opportunity to make cutting remarks under the guise of being honest, naive or just stupid. A Frenemy is a 29 year old who says to a 50-year old who is being sexually harassed at work by person of same age-"Oh, I guess old people still want to have sex, too!"

#10 Someone you love to hate "Why do you hang around with that kid?" "I don't, he's just my frenemy." "Huh?" "I enjoy treating him like shit."

#11 China. We're basically en route to war with them, but they're so essential to our everyday lives we can do nothing about it. We can't live without little plastic cars. From the Colbert Report with Stephen Colbert. China's our frenemy. They're communists, but they stabilize our economy
#12 Your enemy who's also a friend. Kitty Pryde is on the X-Men and Lance Alvers is on the Brotherhood. They're on opposite teams, thus making them enemies but they're still friends....Therefore they are each others frenemy.

#13 A person who is your friend but acts like your enemy. Your Friend: "OMG that is such a terrible skirt, seriously do you mean to turn guys off or is it just your off fahsion style?" You: "Have you noticed that you are such a frenemy?"

#14 A word used, usually in tabloids, to describe two people, usually famous people, who are enemies in the press and friends in real life or vice versa, generally a technique used simply to gain publicity. Lindsay Lohan: omg look! we're on the cover of US weekly AGAIN!! Paris Hilton: omigod Lindsay! this frenemy thing is doing wonders for our image

#15 A frenemy refers to a company that can be both a partner (customer, vendor, etc.) and a competitor at the same time. Sir Martin Sorrell said he counts Google as a frenemy of WPP, the ad agency empire that be built. On one hand, Google offers WPP a chance to buy cutting edge interactive ads for its clients. One the other hand, Google makes no secret of its intentions to allow anyone to buy ads for themselves, which could disintermediate ad agencies.

And now for some funny quotes about Ex-Friends:
-I'm sorry, did my back hurt your knife?
-Never turn your back on a friend, thats the best target.
-While you're stabbing my back, you can kiss my ass too.
-All the mistakes in the world couldn't measure up to the day I thought I could trust you.
-Yeah, being apathetic is a pathetic way to be... but I don't care, what matters to you does not matter to me
-When your up, your friends know who you are. When you're down, you know who your friends are.
-You can't laugh last If I stab you in the throat with...the knife you left in my back.
-I was the one who said things changed; you were the one who proved it.
-Friendship is not capable of ending. For if it ends it is only because it never existed.
-I'll never forget what you did to me, but I'll never let you know I remember.
-In dealing with backstabbers there's one thing I’ve learned: those bitches are only powerful when your back is turned.
-If your having doubts about whether you can actually trust a person...chances are you can't.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Thank God for a 3-day Weekend!

Whew! It's only Saturday and I am BEAT! It's been a busy week.

Thursday I had to finish up the centerpieces I was working on for the dinner the Bnettes hosted for the Freshmen dance team. The theme this year was Broadway and one of the mom's made customized Playbills for me to incorporate into the centerpieces. We went with a black and silver color-scheme and everything turned out great and the food was awesome! Really a nice group of girls and mom's. I checked KJ out of school early Friday afternoon so she could see the pep rally and Cosmo met us up at the high school. Pep Rally was OUTSTANDING. The kids were super, duper pumped and the gym was rocking! The Bnttes did the Smooth Criminal routine they worked on for UDA camp. I love that routine!

Last year's Spain Park game was a nail biter, this year was a bit of a snoozer. Hoover was up 44 to nothing at the half. The parachuter's landing on the turf was awesome and the Spain Park band and Dazzlers were great. I love watching T dance but honestly, our halftime routine is kind of boring (earlier in the week the band/colorguard/dance team had a "sneak peek" for the parents so we kind of knew what to expect). It's very traditional marching band. Spain Park's band was more contemporary and upbeat. There's always been a big rivalry w/ Spain Park and it has even extended to the dance team in year's past. This year I noticed the Bnettes walked over to the SP stands during the 3rd quarter. I couldn't figure out what the heck they were doing. Later, T told me they wanted to be gracious hosts and say hello to the Dazzlers. Since T knows most of the Dazzlers from the studio, one of the senior girls pushed T to the front and said, "You go first since you're the one they really want to see." T said it was very, very nice. They all hugged and had a big group photo taken. So yay! Spreading the love!

We had so much fun sitting at the game with friends and I always love catching up with everyone. I love having friends who love me and my children (and the hubster, too). I think that's how I'm going to measure friendship from now on. I think it's a true sign of friendship if someone can be happy for you and your family and not be afraid to tell you. So many people texted us or Facebook'd us last night to tell us that they saw T in her orange sparkly. Nothing over the top, just nice, sweet messages that said, "Hey! T did great!" That's all it takes to make someone's day.

While I was helping the Bnettes w/ the dinner and getting ready for the game, Cosmo & KJ tailgated w/ friends and got to met the parents of the young man who asked T to homecoming earlier in the week. I haven't met him yet but Cosmo said his parents were very nice. Yay!

T had been complaining about her throat the last couple of days so I was able to get her into the doctor's this morning. The rapid strep came back negative but he said her throat was raw and it's time to start thinking about getting those tonsils out. Great.

After the doctor's we thought we had better start looking for homecoming dresses since T's weeknights are pretty filled up and next Saturday we'll be at the Penn State game and KJ has b-day parties the next two Sunday's. She was feeling pretty rotten but agreed. Nothing really jumped out at us. I really liked a dress she tried on at Jessica McClintock but she wasn't "wowed." We decided to cut our losses and have some lunch. On a whim we stopped in a store we were not very familiar with and ended up buying the PERFECT dress. When we were waiting in the doctor's office this morning I asked T if she had any special color in mind for this year's dress, she mentioned a specific shade and that's exactly what she came home with. She doesn't mess around.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


So the new season of Dancing with the Stars has been announced:
I don't watch this show on a regular basis but do try to catch it every once in a while. I actually TiVo it and then fast forward thru most of it. They look pretty funny when they dance in warp speed. Actually, I don't even bother watching the "results" night when someone goes home. The casting is becoming predictable and a bit boring:

Kurt Warner -- obligatory "athlete" (last year was the Bengal's OchoCinco, previous seasons have included Evander Holyfield, Olympian Apolo Anton Ohno and football great Jerry Rice)
Florence Henderson -- obligatory "older woman" (i.e., Jane Seymour, Priscilla Presley, Chloris Leachman)
Bristol Palin -- I'm just going to put her in the WTH? category. I mean Seriously? What the Hell? The only thing this kid is "famous" for is having a DB for a baby daddy and being the offspring of a politician.
Audrina Patridge and The Situation -- the "reality TV star" (a la Trista {the very first Bachelor/Bachelorette contestant}, Kate Gosselin, Melissa Rycroft {former Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader/Bachelor contestant}, Kim Kardashian). Audrina could also fall into "the hot girl" category (see below).
Jennifer Gray -- the "has been" w/ a little bit of dancing capabilities (think Donny Osmond, Joey McIntrye from NKOTB, Joey Fatone, Aaron Carter or Nick Lachey's brother whose name I can never remember). Joing Jennifer this year is "has been" Hasselhoff. Although I can't wait to hear that crazy Bruno shout out something like "don't hassle the hoff!" during an episode!
Other than Audrina Patridge, I don't see anyone emerging as the "the hot girl" -- WWE's Stacy Keibler, Nicole from the Pussycat Dolls, Erin Andrews, Hef's old girlfriend Holly Madison, and who can forget Pamela Anderson???
If he's not careful, Michael Bolton could easily fall into "the stiff" category (Tucker Carlson, George Hamilton, Harry Hamlin, Jerry Springer and Buzz Aldrin) but I'd hope he's some got some soul after all the beautiful music he's produced over the years.
"The youngster" this year is the kid from "That's So Raven" (one year it was a kid from Hannah Montana).
And finally, no one, not even the Situation, can fill the shoes of "the hot guy" Mario Lopez. Enough said.

Monday, August 30, 2010

All My Life I wanna be a Raider!!!

Saw the following story about our high school in New York on CBS and felt so proud! Actually, I wasn't a bit surprised to hear about this at all. 25 years ago when we were in school, Coach Casarella always had special needs students on the sidelines as ball boy, water boy, equipment managers, statisticians, etc.

Let's face it folks. Casarella is a demi-God in the great state of New York and is a class act all the way. He has the respect of every student, every parent and every teacher in that high school (and the respect of every student, every parent and every teacher in the state). And he does it without fanfare, without an ego. He is one of the most unassuming people you'll ever meet. He doesn't pass out autographed 8x10 glossys of himself, he always looks like he needs a shave and his clothes are always a wrinkled mess. The guy is so old school New York/Italian, he can't even count to three (it always came out as "one, two, tree"). The man is the stuff of legends. When someone of his caliber stays in one place for 40-something years, his level of commitment to the kids and the community is unquestionable. How many coaches can you say that about? How many coaches (high school, college, professional) these days are always looking for the bigger school, the bigger buck? Trust me, with a record and a reputation like his, he could go anywhere in the state, anywhere in the country and name his price.
This press is release is from is from 2002 and highlights some of Caserella's accomplishments on and off the field (back when he had only been coaching 36 years, he's now been at North Rockland High School for 44 years). This article is 8 years old, God only knows what he's accomplished since it was first written:

Here's Coach Cas's outlook for the 2010 season (this article cracks me up because Cosmo & I used to hang out w/ the PK's dad of the same name back in high school): A lot of familiar family names on that roster.

The timing of this article about my high school alma mater is so coincidental to me. Apparently several Hoover kids have decided to quit the football team the past couple of weeks which I find kind of amusing (not in a funny ha-ha way but more of an ironic way). I don't know their personal reasons for quitting but I'm sure it wasn't an easy decision to make. I don't know if they quit because of the playing time they were seeing (when you dress over 100 kids for a Friday night game, chances are 90% of them aren't even going to touch the turf) or if they just got tired of it and want to try something new (most of these boys have been playing organized football since first grade). Regardless of their reason, I'm proud of them. Football is SO huge down here and it's not easy to go against the grain (or in this case, the mob mentality of high school football). These kids (and their parents) LIVE for Friday nights. Grown men count down the days to the home opener. Grown men are active participants on message boards and football forums and can recite stats better than they know the names and birthdates of their own children. Don't get me wrong, I love football. I cheered my entire life, went to thousands of games (high school, peewee, college and professional) and I can totally hold my own in any football-related conversation with the best of 'em (thanks to my dad and my hubby). What I DON'T like about this entire situation are the morons who are blaming lacrosse for this recent exodus. A friend of a friend made a stupid, very public statement about "lacrosse is stealing the best players." Lacrosse isn't "stealing" anybody. Lacrosse is appealing to good athletes because of the physical contact, the speed, the agility. As a parent, why wouldn't you encourage your child to pursue an activity/sport/hobby that they WANT to do? I think a lot of these daddies (and mommies) are living their lives precariously thru their children. I can't even begin to count how many times a boy has come up to Champ and said, "I really want to try lacrosse but my dad won't let me. My dad won't let me quit football" (or baseball, take your pick).
Friday night high school football is THE social event of the fall and, to a lot of these folks, if they don't have football, they feel that they don't fit in. I've always said that not everyone can play football at Hoover, not everyone's going to star on Two-A-Days. If your son has decided he's done with one sport and wants to try another, why wouldn't you give him your full support? You may not like the sport or activity or may not understand it but why wouldn't you give that kid two thumbs up for trying something different? Unfortunately, at a school like Hoover where football is king, it's damn near next to impossible for a kid to play both sports. However, up North, it's commonplace. So common in fact, that Coach Cas was Coach Cos's football AND lacrosse coach when he was just a wee little Cos.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Lots Going On

Lots of fun stuff this week and weekend. The Hoover Buccanettes were in the Birmingham News this week for their accomplishments at UDA camp. Great photo of all the girls proudly displaying their blue ribbons. The dance team also got some really cool news this week but I've been sworn to secrecy. Champ and I got some cool news this week too but can't say too much because the girls don't know yet. I hate secrets and surprises. Never liked 'em, never will.

T's friend from the dance studio, Scarlett, is representing Alabama at the Outstanding Teen pageant tonight. She won talent earlier in the week so big congrats to her! She's a lovely young lady and has worked so hard to get where she is.

Today was the big Hoover football game on ESPN.
Offensively they were a little rusty, which usually happens in the first couple of games. Defensively they were able to shut out Byrnes (which hasn't happened in 11 years or something like that). Cowboy had a great game and a couple other lacrosse players got some love. #25 took a HUGE hit that was very, very hard to watch. I actually felt like I was going to be sick. I jumped up and started pacing and KJ kept screaming "turn it off! turn it off!" when they were showing the replay. Connor's a great kid and I hope he's OK.

Last night two of Cosmo's BamaLaxers from Mt. Brook, the Cox twins, had a great game, too Those two boys have serious wheels. I've also had one eye on our cross-town rivals Spain Park vs. Grayson (GA). The game's been a bit of a snoozer. Spain Park's players look so young and kind of smaller compared to some of the Hoover kids. Spain Park's sidelines remind me of a peewee game but I give the boys credit for getting out there considering what's been happening w/ their head coach this week.

Cosmo's up in Greenville, SC at a men's lax tournament and should be home tomorrow. The old man's still got game.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

My new favorite quote....

"A true friend is someone who says nice things behind your back." - Unknown

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Time to Break out the HazMat Suit

Late Sunday afternoon KJ developed a bit of a fever and complained of a stomach ache. She laid on the couch for a while w/ a blankie and took a pretty good nap. I actually had to wake her up so she'd be able to sleep at night. She took a shower around 7:30/8 PM and said she felt great. Woke up Monday and went off to school like normal. I got a phone call from the school nurse close to 10 AM. Yup. KJ was in the nurse's office w/ a low grade fever complaining about her stomach. I checked her out of school, gave her some chicken noodle soup and crackers and ginger ale and voila! That seemed to do the trick. While I was at the school I ran into a couple of teachers/moms I knew and they all said there is a stomach bug going around. Yuck! It is just way too early in the school year for this! I hate this time of year. It's still so hot out and the school is just a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Totally gives me the heeby-jeebies!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

In the Navy

College football season is just a few days away and Cosmo's pride and joy, the son we never had, Brye French has been getting a lot of ink lately. Because his high school didn't have a lacrosse program, Brye and two of his younger brothers drove up from the Montgomery area to play lacrosse for Hoover (there's actually 5 French boys, all their names start w/ B). The last of the French boys graduated this past spring and rec'd a scholarship to play lacrosse at Shorter University in Georgia (
Cosmo particularly likes the following article because it mentions that Brye was originally a lacrosse recruit, not a football recruit. I like this article because it points out that Brye is the first Midshipmen to play two sports since Craig Candeto (he served as quarterback for the football team and as an outfielder on the baseball squad in 2003-2004). Jamie Doffermyre, Class of 2000, was the last athlete to play football and lacrosse for the Mids. If anyone can juggle two sports, it's Brye. He's such a good kid and always had his head on straight. Very focused young man and a leader on and off the field.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Politics and Housewives

I luv, luv, luv Bravo's "Real Housewives" franchise and have watched the last two weeks of the new DC season. The show has got me thinking about how difficult it must be to live in close proximity with people who have such opposing political views as you. I'm sure things can get pretty heated in DC. These are people you have to socialize with, people you have to do business with, etc. Your political views define who you are, how you raise your family, your thoughts on social and economic issues, etc. I just don't think I can do it. Someone once told me that I have a very "read-able" face (meaning you can tell what I'm thinking but looking at my facial expressions). It's true. I don't do fake, forced or phony. If I like you, you know it. If I don't, you know it. Whether it's right or wrong, it's who I've been for the last 42 (gasp! almost 43 years!) and is not going to change. I guess what I mean is that I don't dislike someone for their political views, I form my opinion based on actions (or lack thereof as the case may be). I don't like or dislike someone "just" because. I have pretty valid reasons for feeling the way I do. I have several friends who have different political opinions than me and it's no big deal. I may not like their views but I don't dislike them personally. What I don't like is people who think their way is the ONLY way.

Having said all that, have I mentioned lately how much I dislike our country's current administration?

To read about Mrs. Obama's recent exploits in Spain and the alleged cost to taxpayers, please click here and here:

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Warp Speed

Wow. so much can happen in a week . . . school started (check out the pic of KJ and the Vera Bradley messenger bag she HAD to have!) and we totally surprised T with a car! Whoop! Whoop!
Last Saturday Cosmo & T did a little car shopping after lacrosse practice. She test drove a bunch of cars and decided she liked this cute little SUV. She kept saying she DIDN'T want an SUV but I think she got so used to driving my car this summer, she felt a little weird being in a regular car. She said when she test drove all those cars, she realized she didn't like being so low to the ground. Her car is a little smaller than mine and after doing a little research, I discovered that her model received perfect marks on all it's safety tests. She had plans w/ her friend Caroline so Cosmo and I ran down to the dealership while she was out for the evening. We pulled the car into the garage and had Caroline call us when they were on their way home so we could hide in the garage and take photos. Her reaction was priceless!

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"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." -- Dr. Seuss

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