Since I was tricked, I have become much much smarter. Original post and comments here, I thought I would share a letter to a frenemy, Don Patron. And this will be a lesson to you as you plan your New Year's Eve festivities.
Mr. Patron: I realize we crossed paths again recently. You seemed rather interested in getting to know me. I can not reciprocate your feelings. While you tried to seduce me in Mexico, I ignored you. You winked at me over the 4th of July holiday party scene, but you will see that I am quite resistant. Oh, your lovely words of encouragement on my birthday fell on empty ears. These lips shall never touch you. Admittedly, you are sleek and fancy, and considered by all to be top shelf. But alas, we shan't get familiar, and here are the reasons why.
You have some wretched compadres. Yes, perhaps far less stellar than you, but since you all share the same lineage in some form or fashion, I shall lump you all together. There is such a long list, I won't name names. However, the absolute worst is your ugly cousin, Jose Cuervo. I detest him most of all. He knows I don't like him and neither of us really needs a refresher on why I don't like him, do we? In fact, I haven't liked him for a long, long time. Let me explain.
I met Jose the summer before my junior year in high school. My friend LL and I went down to watch a rowing event at the University of Washington and somehow ended up on Greek Row. Some boys from Kappa Sigma invited us in for a little early-afternoon Jimmy Buffett party. How could we resist. Older, handsome college boys with Jimmy Buffett? In the door we go. (Foolish, foolish girls.)
Your cousin Jose Cuervo mixed himself into some frozen margaritas. A cooler, more delicious elixir I had never before consumed. Since wine coolers and light beer was the extent of my alcohol repertoire, the frozen marga-treat-a was divine. Jose told me one more wouldn't hurt. So I had one more. And then one more. Jose told me he tasted even better straight from the bottle. Oh, and since we told our hosts we were freshman in college, they assumed we were already savvy in the ways of Jose's hedonistic world. Jose said it wouldn't matter. He said we seemed sophisticated and mature. Never mind I tripped over a rug in my attempt to sashay over to a cute boy, Jose said no one even noticed.
Jose said he would refresh me. He told me I was pretty. And the best dancer. Ever.
Jose said to drink and dance. I did. Jose said that it was hot in here and why wear my sweater when a tank top is fine. I listened, oh so closely. Jose had a firm grip. And then, Jose turned against me. He told me to take a catnap. In the middle of the floor. Then he said goodbye.
I asked him to help me get home. He laughed and said he was too busy with other party guests. Jose let two other people carry me to my car and deposit me on the floorboard. LL had to drive us home.
Jose told me to open the door at a traffic light. In the middle of 45th St. With hundreds of cars around, since this was the University District of Seattle after all. Jose told me the only way to feel better would be to crawl out of the car. And throw up. On the pavement. In the middle of one of the busiest intersections we could find. Then Jose told me to get in the car. But he didn't tell me I had barf on my shirt. LL pulled off on a residential side street. Jose told me how calming the sidewalk would feel on my face. He told me to lay down. He told me to let that dog lick my mouth.
I barely got back in the car. Jose didn't warn me that we would pass my parents. Jose merely laughed and said "Arriba! Arriba!"
My parents did pass us. And LL pulled over. My mom came STORMING to the car inquiring on my whereabouts. Jose didn't tell me to keep quiet. Jose told me to speak up. Share my thoughts. He said I sounded clear, crisp, intelligent. My mom looked at me, looked at LL, and asked what was going on. LL told her I was drunk. Thanks friend.
I tried to tell my mom about Jose. I tried to point him out. But he had disappeared. Left me with a sordid tale, bad breath, and a shirt I would be soon throwing away. Oh, and punishment.
I never saw him again that year or the next. And then, as a freshman in college, I saw him resurface. He must have followed me to a party. Me, all sunny and bright. He, with all his liquidy amber glow. He came onto me. He said he was delicious. He assured me he had changed. He said it would be different this time.
Jose Cuervo is a liar...
He asked me to dance and after ignoring him for hours, I gave in. He told me we would take it slow. LIAR LIAR LIAR. Jose told me drinking was fun but shots were better. He told me dancing was fun but dancing on tables was better. He said to play Thumper. He said to play Quarters. He said smoke cigarettes. He said I looked hot. He said I was the funniest girl in the world. He said play air guitar. He said pee in the front yard. He told me those photos of me drinking shots wouldn't matter, they would only make me laugh. Oh, Jose, he is one smooth talker.
I had a headache that lasted one month. I cursed him and the day I laid eyes on him. I saw him influence others to run naked and jump off roofs but not me. He tried to corner me on other occasions. I screamed in his face. He tried to up the ante by introducing me to his friends Don Julio and Dona Carlota. I spit on him. Jose Cuervo is a sadist. I will warn others.
And while I do make a fantastic margarita (just ask JohnnyMac), and while we stock Cabo Wabo in our house, I know better than to dip in myself. So Mr. Patron, your interest in me is a dead end. I am wise now. And tell your horrid cousin, Jose, I don't even want his aroma within 20 feet of me.
Sometimes, the simple act of listening can provide comical fodder the best scriptwriters could not produce. Original post and comments here, this is what it was like to be in the right place at the right time, or the wrong place at the wrong time.
JohnnyMac and I took the little man to dinner the other night at one of our fave Atlanta locations, Taqueria del Sol. I went to get our table while JohnnyMac waited for our refreshing libations. I take a table outdoors next to a cute couple who appear in their mid 20s. After a moment or two of eavesdropping casual listening to inordinate amounts of giggling and awkward conversation, I quickly determine they are on a first date.
And the worst first date conversation ensues. But I loved it because it is going worldwide now, isn't it? At one point, when JohnnyMac and Mr. MiniMac came to join me, JohnnyMac said, "that must be some highly interesting dialogue going on since you are not listening to a word I am saying."
Me, not listening to a word JohnnyMac is saying? WOW...I feel like a husband. Just kidding. JohnnyMac listens to everything one of out four six ten things I say.
Boys and girls who are preparing to go on dates, here are several things you might want to avoid discussing:
Boy: blah blah blah my boss is a betch. Woman don't make good bosses. Girl: tee hee heee...what? Boy: Oh, was the offensive what I just said? Girl: Well, not entirely offensive.
My thoughts: Ummm...straighten up Boy. This is no way to entice this woman or show your modernity. Your boss may be a betch. But the fact she is a poor boss simply because she is female is inaccurate. Go ahead and stick around, Girl. Hope you like having turkey pot pie on the table promptly at five.
Then Girl begins talking about her lunch time "drinking fest" she takes with other girls from the firm she is interning with. They call them "Margarita Lunches". Boy laughs. Girl talks about going to a Happy Hour with many people from her firm. She said someone ordered shots and says, "How stupid is that to order shots at 5 pm?"
Boy asks, "What did you do"
Girl responds, "Well, they were Redheaded Sluts. I mean, who is going to turn that down. I LOVE Redheaded Sluts." Boy makes a sound like Slingblade and says, "Mmmmmmme too." Girl: tee heee heeee tee heee, that is one night I did some things I regret. Boy: (awkward hahaha) Regret like bad pictures taken of you or you woke up with needle marks in your arm? haha....followed by more awkward laughter. Girl: Worse. Silence ensues. While he may find this coquettish, he might also go home and google your name into YouPorn.com and watch the post red-headed slut antics. And then you may become his favorite girlfriend of all time.
Later, JohnnyMac takes MiniMac to potty. I catch this:
Boy : Tell me something interesting about you. Girl: My college boyfriend had a 13" penis. Boy: silence
Boy can say nothing immediately. Did Girl HONESTLY think about WHAT SHE JUST SAID?
Boy: huh huh uh uh....did you measure it?
Girl: tee heee heee hee hee. No.
Boy: You measured it, didn't you? Girl: Yes.
Thankfully I just put down my Pacifico or JohnnyMac AND little man would have worn it via pleasant snorting laughter spray-fest.
Here is just a potential tip: NEVER, and I do mean NEVER discuss your ex-boyfriend's 13 inch Johnson on a date. But that is why it was the first date and not the rehearsal dinner.
In the final days of 2009, I hope we can all reflect on a year that left us with lessons and blessings. As I am doing a deep clean to make way for the turn of year, I am posting Let's Have a Cocktail Rewind: The Best of 2009. Original post and comments here , I shared a letter on my birthday last July written to my eight year old self.
Now, take a deep breath, and help me blow out all these candles.
38....is great. And I will be blowing out 38 candles this Sunday.
Deep in the matriarchal DNA of my family resides the long linear polymer for I LOVE BIRTHDAYS. Of course, I already pontificated on this subject and told you about Sangria ChaChaCha which will be served to the rim this weekend at a bit of a bash in my honor. Since I can't pour you a glass from here (oh, I would if I could honey) if you want to partake, here is the recipe . I want all of you to join me for a cocktail as I reflect on a very full and fun life.
In this retrospect, I thought of sage advice and prolific words of wisdom I might share if I had the chance to write a letter to JennyMac at say, age 8. Like to hear it? Here it go....
Dear 8 year old JennyMac:
Happy early birthday. You turn 9 in just a few days. You LOVE parties and always will so enjoy your day.
You little girl, are brave, trusting, and good. Smart as a whip and certainly not afraid to clarify that for others who do not seem to grasp it. You are also sassy and have quite a mouth on you. A natural proclivity toward sarcasm is typically not developed so young. Use it wisely. And by wisely, I mean don't use it on your teachers. As more specifically, don't call Mr. M an "arsehole" to his face. He is your Leadership teacher. This is not good leadership. And you are a kid. Not nice. Oh, and you certainly get in trouble at home so side-step that temptation.
Charm is of utmost importance and the sooner you employ it, the better. It is NOT charming to tell your mom, whilst she is spanking you, that you "can't feel a thing." Wise up. This will induce more spanking. Don't be smug.
You love sports and are quite good. You will love soccer, skiing, tennis, and volleyball for life. Give up piano lessons. Early. Your older brother has the musical talent of ten people. There is none left for you.
Oh, you are a tiny thing. Guess what, you will not grow and look like a real girl until 7th grade. Because of this, when you decide in 5th grade to cut off all your long hair for a Dorothy Hamill hair cut, I will be the first to tell you DON'T DO THIS. People will ask your parents about their "son" on more than one occasion. You will not like it. Pay attention to my words and don't cut your hair, or at least find someone who doesn't cut it like you are about to join the Army.
Your Father tells you at a young age you better find a career that pays you to run your mouth the way you do. You pick Lawyer. From the age of five you aspire to be two things: a Solid Gold Dancer or an attorney. Solid Gold goes off the air but watch it and learn all their skills. Law school is the answer. Although in any given opportunity, you will emulate the deft moves of a Solid Gold Dancer a long time
for years forever.
And don't tell lies. Like when you borrowed your Mom's bronzer, turned your face orange because you used too much, got it ALL over the impeccable white counters and floor, and then when questioned, you feigned bewilderment and innocence. Well sugar, the writing is all over your tangerine skin. Lucky for you, you learn quickly and just take your licks.
You will get tall, but you will be a size zero until about 13. Don't fret. You will never be a size zero again. And your boobs don't actually feel like participating in the "growth" process so they wait. For about 2 or 3 years. And when they come, its a weak showing. You twist and turn on this. Worry not. Why? Magic words: padded push-up. Plus, Victoria's Secret will solve this problem for you later in life with the first Miracle Bra. Even better ones come. Oh, and the braless, flat girls abound after the 90's.
Skip school a few days in November of 1984. You are only in 7th grade so just hold the thermometer near the light bulb for a few seconds. During November of this year "pants-ing" people becomes all the rage amongst the boys at school. You are not developed yet. You will get pants-ed. You will be called Peach Fuzz. You will react in a way the fuels fire. Not wise. You will need to work on this. Try laughing and telling them you lead the frontier for the Brazilian wax. Instead you will cry. Peach Fuzz sticks with you for about a year. You will laugh about this only DECADES later. Do yourself a favor, and just feign sickness. When you finally do get boobs, these same boys will not be singing Peach Fuzz.
You are going to have a great life. You are so lucky, and so loved. You adore clothes from a wee age when you refused to wear panties and socks that don't match. Nordstrom was the first word you could spell. You will make some wildly poor outfit choices in the 80's but everyone does.
You will wear a velour mid-length snap front bathrobe to school and because it is fabulous and purple, you will tell people it is a coat. Ummmm, one day you and your BFF TazBud will get in a fight and she will out you. Save it for the shower, sweetie.
Also, you will put blond hair color on one side of your hair. Right at the roots. Let's not. It will turn your hair orange and you will be stuck growing this out for over one year. This will be in ALL of your cheerleading pics. Your mom will hang these in the living room for ALL to see. If you don't take my advice, enjoy getting hazed. For years.
Oh, and stay out of Mom's jewelry box. Especially without permission. Yes, you like the jewels but you take her black pearls without express consent and then wear them in your class pictures. Ummm. Really? You have them ON in the picture. What more proof does she need? Perhaps you should have got your tiny arse beat because you will also one day take a ring of hers without asking and lose the stone. Turns out her father gave her the ring as a graduation gift. This will break your mom's heart and you will not know that for years to come. And you can NEVER replace something of such sentimental value. Just be respectful and ask first.
But older brother's room is a free for all. He has sh*t hidden everywhere: love notes, Copenhagen, contraband cigs, a one-hitter. You will have such great ammo against him. Start looking now.
You have some of the greatest friends of your life growing up. You will still be friends with many of them to this day.
Oh, your high school boyfriend was actually not the one who informed your Mom about who bought you alcohol in order to gain her good graces. You and all of your friends have big fun calling him Eddie Haskell for about the next decade but he is innocent. She is reading your journals. But, you are so clever that you often write your shenanigans in code. Brilliant move. She doesn't know HALF of what you are up to.
And believe me, you and your gal pals are innocent little lambs compared to teens today.
Oh, but when you get asked by one coach if you were drinking during a high school party thereby violating Athletic Code, DENY DENY DENY. She is a cow and will mishandle it. You and your two close friends will be suspended from the team (only for a bit though). Instead, smile at her as say " I would never." And wine coolers shouldn't really qualify as "drinking."
Oh, and when you pitch a full throttle fit when you are forced to watch 90210 because it's your little brother's birthday and he gets to pick, the least you could do is later admit to him you became obsessed with the show and watched it religiously.
While you think it is AMAZING that your first college boyfriend helps you make a beer bong (with a shut off valve...genius) it is HIGHLY UNWISE to bring this home on your first college break to show all of your friends also home on break. Breath-takingly more foolish is that you actually show your Step-Dad. Ummm, they are paying for education not beer-induced sex fest. DO NOT SHOW YOUR PARENTS A BEER BONG. Especially YOUR beer bong with YOUR nickname on it. And then you tell SD who helped you craft it. When that boy comes to visit, your SD calls him a troll. To his face. Your SD does NOT want to think about a boy funneling beer in your mouth at the speed of light for obvious reasons.
And being in a sorority is a great idea. You will love it. Although, those girls can drink. Wine coolers have not prepared you. Oh, and watch those 3 am calzones. Yes, I know you are hungry. Try eating during the day time. You will spend an entire summer working that off your arse.
And "credit card" is not magical slang for "free money" or "something somehow unattached to actual debt". When you Father tells you to pay attention to your credit, that's not French for "MAD SPENDING SPREE". You are smarter than this. Stop acting like you forgot all mathematical and economic concepts because its your first credit card.
Your first really serious college boyfriend is going to break your tiny heart. And he is cheating on you, sweetpea. Don't change a thing, because you learn more from this particular relationship than you can imagine. Its determinism, and it will change you 100% for the better. Pack your tissues though ladybug, its going to be a tough one.
You follow him across the country because you are so wise and grown up. The positive to this is, it is the best mistake you have ever made for the wrong reasons. PS: When your parents are paying for everything, they do, in fact, get a vote.
You will LOVE the University. Thankfully, you will actually like the "school" piece of it too. And you learn quickly skipping class is not wise. You will learn this the day your Western Civ mid term is rescheduled and you were not in class to hear this. Or the next session when they remind people. Oh, you are one smooth talker and overcome this dilemma but just go to class in the first place.
You will come out of your college experience a different and better person (and you think you are pretty fly at the time, trust me). And you will date stellar men from that point on.
Law school is a wise choice. It will benefit you indefinitely. You will have a hemorrhage over your first law school writing grade. That's what you get for being a smarty pants and not studying. Don't be a jackarse. Everyone here is smart. Oh, but you ace the Wills and Trusts exam that you almost have breakdown over fear of failing. Stop carrying on at your apartment on the phone to Mom. You miss your flight and have one hell of a time waiting at the airport for hours because it is winter and there are all kinds of weather issues. Oh, but you do meet a cute boy so all is not lost. And he likes to buy cocktails but easy does it. Don't get off the plane shatfaced to meet your family.
And going to the Grenada every Thursday night for "80's Night & Dollar Pitchers" when you are supposed to be studying Tort Law is a good idea. You will remember those nights much, much longer than you will remember Palsgraf v. Long Island Rail Road.
And when you graduate, you will have achieved your first life goal. And you will meet some of the best friends you will ever hope to have during this time. Well done.
You will have a great career free of blemish. Don't go to work for Big K though. You will get in an argument with him over open toe shoes at the office. In 2001. He is a clown. And you don't work in a manufacturing plant. His wife actually refers to him as "fat bastard". Just decline that offer. And save yourself a headache of trying to educate someone that you don't need to wear clogs and bonnets.
You will paint the town. You will fraternize. And you make good decisions. It is BIG fun.
But that guy that says you "suck" because you don't like his friend, and you answer "hardly" and laugh in his face, that's just fine. But then he calls your friend a " ____ stupid ____" because she won't give him her number. You debate throwing your drink in his face for saying that even though that seems, well, a bit of an over-reaction. Well, THROW IT HONEY. He is begging to be b*tch-slapped via vodka tonic. Believe it. And then you and your friend can reminisce about how good it felt to do it.
At your wedding shower, your favorite and beloved Aunt will say "you sure kissed a lot of frogs before finding your prince." But, you will LOVE kissing these frogs. Kiss away.
And you marry someone strong, and smart, and loving. Having a baby will change both of your lives. And when you are raising a son, you will realize the importance of teaching leadership and being a good parent. And you realize how hard it is sometimes and you regret, oh, about 1,000 things you did/said to your parents.
Oh, and then you will remember that one time you went to your BFF's nieces first bday, and all the kids at one point seemed to be screaming. And you said, "For the love of God, I need a drink. How can you bear the racket." And your BFF, MarciaGarcia, says, "Oh, eventually you just drowned it out." And you say, with what for !&%# sake, a hammer? You will finally know what she means.
And the first time your tiny child says "I love you" without you saying it first, you will melt.
And you will achieve another life goal of writing a book, don't be discouraged that after a few agents give you the nod the only real creatures interested are the spiders crawling on the dusty manuscript in the garage, well, we don' t know what's to come of that yet. You just wrote it a year ago. BUT, you want to start blogging three years before you do. Do it sooner. There is an INCREDIBLY witty, fun, sassy, and smart group of people you will meet in BloggyWorld, doing the same thing, and you will become addicted. Soar baby, soar.
Happy Birthday, and yes, you can have your cake and eat it too.
Ahhh.... the sound of jingle bells becoming fainter. I thought today a good choice for an Awards Party. For Awards Parties, I like to pick a divine frock and splash on some of my favorite eau de parfum but let's mix it up a bit. It is the final awards post of 2009, and since we in Atlanta are just now nudging up to Mr. Winter, let's don our flip flops and go here: Cap Jaluca in Anguilla. One of my favorite places on Earth and the perfect place for a Cocktail Party on the Beach. Who wouldn't enjoy a warm beach right now?
Thank you seems insufficient to everyone reading this blog and I appreciate you, your comments and emails. Blogs provide so many of us a voice, an outlet, and a great opportunity to "meet" people we may otherwise never had the chance to meet. I am glad to be a participant.
And very grateful to Postman for the Superior Scribbler Award. I love it. And you are a Superior Scribbler yourself so I appreciate you thinking of me.
Thank you Lee from Headaches Hormones and Hotflashes for your sassy Your Blog Lights My Fire Award. Thank you Josh at The Technical Parent for the I Should Have Been A Stripper Award. Oh My. That is a sassy award. Thanks Josh. I will be sure NOT to give it to your daughter when she gets older.
Wonderful Erin at The Mother Load gave me this sparkler: The 5 Diamonds Award. Oh, its pretty. And Erin is a gem, so it is perfect. And thank you so much Leah at Funny is the New Young for the Your Blog is Fabulous Award.
And JenJen, thank you for the awesome Frog Award. Adorable!
And big cocktail to you Ali Dubrow for naming me your "Blog Find of the Year. " And the super creative Dumbwit Teller made this amazing award. And there is a dress after my own heart. Fabulous Candice at Wolf's on Safari gave me the Gorgeous Blogger Award. Thank you! And Raouly's Girl, big thanks for the wonderful Lemonade Stand Award.
Whew..sip break. In addition to the blogs above who contribute a wide variety of sass, wit, and charm to the Party, there are obviously many others. Because I want to you to visit all of these links, I am sharing just a few more great blogs reflecting on everything from music, secret confessions, dating as a single man, and the life of an ex-dancer and a good deal in between.
And to all of these bloggers listed today, I give the following:
I Give Good Blog Award because every single one of you contributes something great to BlogWorld.
The rules: No one really likes rules, do they? I shall make mine simple. Make a cocktail, pick out some of your favorite bloggers. Send this award to 4 of them. Tell them why you think they give good blog. There are SO many fascinating, witty, and fantastic bloggers; let's invite them all to the party.
Or you can just put it on your mantle and watch it sparkle. And if you think it sassy I created my own Award, just consider it a grown up and virtual version of a friendship bracelet.
And finally, let's be honest. Does everyone love to sit through an entire awards ceremony to see other people win? They do it for the moral support, I know. But they also do it for the fabulous swag bag. So shouldn't you get something too? After all, did you not just spend days and days giving to others?
What might be in your swag bag? Well, it is a beach party, but I can not send you an umbrella adorned cocktail, a cabana boy OR cabana girl..but the other perfect thing for the beach is a great read. So....I am giving one of you a $20.00 gift card to Amazon so you can give yourself a little something. And to celebrate a great year ahead.
Just leave a comment by Friday and I will pick a name out of my magic hat on Saturday morning and announce the winner. Have a great day. You all are the perfect guests for this beach party.
I have family in town, great plans to see more family and friends, a smashing new book to read, delicious vittles lined up for our holiday menus, and a child that is viewing the holidays with the awe and wonder that only a child can. Enjoy your days wherever and however you are celebrating. See you Sunday.
Before MiniMac turned one I made the well-intentioned decision to take him to Lenox Square for a photo opp with the Lenox Square Santa. Yes, this is the most revered Santa in all of SantaLand apparently. Which explains two things: Why one would attempt strategy and military tactics to avoid waiting in long lines even though she was a new parent and completely clueless that EVERY mother there had the same idea in mind. AND why the line I thought I would outfox would have more people in it than a free Rolling Stones concert in Central Park. It is also interesting that I would take my wee baby to see Santa aware the majority of tiny children don't even want to be held by anyone not sharing their same DNA but that he would somehow make an exception for a large fluffy man with a giant beard and tummy to match. But alas, I was new.
While in line and attempting to pass time and not let my impatience bomb explode, I chatted with the women in front of me. One I recognized from Tennis. She was there with her darling daughter almost four, as well as husband's sister and her offspring. Why is this relevant? You'll see.
So we all chat it up as the line goes about as slow as a long day in Western Kansas, and finally, the two women in front of me are next which puts MiniMac and I on deck. Sister in law went first with her two. Tennis Mom and I chatted as her little daughter made sweet kissy faces at MiniMac. And then it is Tennis Mom's turn with her child.
Her daughter sits on Santa's lap and they take adorable pics. Santa asks her what she wants for Christmas and she relays in solid detail exactly what she wants. Santa smiles and asks, "Is there anything else?"
"Well," she said slowly, "Mommy wants a different husband but I don't know what that is..."
Santa sort of chuckles because really, what else is he going to do? Tennis Mom's face almost implodes. Because I have no poker face (nor a lady's mouth) I am quite certain upon seeing Tennis Mom's face I, in a movie theater style whisper, say something precious like "ohsh*t"
Sister in law (with a rather frowny face) says to child on Santa's lap, "WHAT did you just say Madeline?????"
Tennis Mom does not maintain cool. Tennis Mom grabs the daughter from Santa's lap, basically tucks her under the arm, and flees the scene with all the quickness and dexterity of someone who just spent a week at Terry Bradshaw Training Camp.
Sister in law, in a flurry of stroller and Burberry scarf, was in hot pursuit.
MiniMac was nonplussed of course so we just rolled right up for our photo opp. And before that photo opp was completely halted by MiniMac's fear of Santa demonstrated by terrified cries, I say to Santa in reference to Tennis Mom's scenario, "Is that the craziest thing you have ever heard?"
Santa, with his bowl full of jelly shake shake shaking says, "No dear, it isn't."
Tennis Mom: Ask Santa for a delete button for your kiddo's one-liners next year.
Over great wine and apps with friends the other night, one girlfriend told me she discards holiday cards they receive as soon as she reads them. I was surprised. She also shared that she received a card that read "Dear Heather. You are such an amazing person and I have so much admiration for you." Except her name is not Heather. "Did you want me to keep that one?" she asked.
She is the opposite of people we know that have every card they have ever received for the past ten years.
Whether you are clutter-free or a total hoarder, here is a great option for your holiday cards this year.
From now through February 28, 2010, you can donate all of the holiday cards you receive to St. Jude’s Ranch for Children. This is an organization for neglected, abandoned and abused children. The children earn money by removing the front of donated cards to make new cards sold in packets of ten.
Visit the site for details on donating. Could be a great idea for purchasing your cards for next year too. And you will have none of the risks that reGifting includes.
The batter alone is simply divine. This is my mom's recipe and even though I do not consider Rum a tasty treat, you can't go wrong with this at the holidays. I am not implying your holidays will be improved by large consumptions of rum, but should you need a sip to help you relax, here is an antidote even St. Nick would imbibe on. Enjoy.
HOT BUTTERED RUM MIX
1 pound butter (I use Land O Lakes)
1 pound brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
1 quart vanilla ice cream
Cream sugar and butter until fluffy, add 1 quart partly melted ice cream. Mix well. Store covered in the freezer. In a mug add 1 shot of rum (I use Cruzin Clipper 151 proof. Have also used Captain Morgan's Spiced). 2 heaping tablespoons of mix (or to taste) and boiling water. Scrape fresh nutmeg on the top.
Its holiday party season...and you want something pretty (and easy) to present. Here is a gorgeous no-bake option. I saw this picture months ago on my friend Simone's blog and thought it would be perfect for December dessert rotation. This serves 10-12. Buon Appetito!
Strawberry Zinfandel Trifle
Prep and Cook Time: about 20 minutes, plus at least 1 hour to cool and 2 hours to chill.
Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups dry red Zinfandel
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 quart sliced strawberries
1 plain (or lemon-flavored pound cake) (1 lb.)
2 c. whipping cream
Several whole strawberries, rinsed
1. In a 3- to 4-quart pan over high heat, bring wine and 1/3 cup sugar to a boil. Boil until reduced to 1 cup, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and sliced strawberries. Let cool about 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
2. Cut cake into 1/2-inch-thick slices, then into 1 1/2- by 2-inch pieces.
3. In a bowl, with a mixer on high, beat cream and remaining sugar until soft peaks form.
4. Arrange a third of the cake in the bottom of a 2 1/2- to 3-quart straight-sided glass dish. Spoon a third of the sliced berries and wine over the top. Spread about a third of the whipped cream over berries. Repeat layers twice, ending with cream.
5. Cover trifle loosely and chill at least 2 hours or up to 1 day. Garnish with whole berries. Scoop down into layers to serve.
An unexpected summer shower glossed the streets. She attempted to keep her sandaled feet balanced on the slick cobblestones as she and her companions darted through a narrow courtyard. The hum of the music a magnet guiding their way. Once inside, skin held the dewy sheen as long hair shook out rivulets of water.
Drinking cool glasses of Rias Baixas, the women turn from the bar and watch the crowd move in hazy waves.
An hour passed easily as the sway and heat mixed in the dusky club. He came straight on without warning. Removing the glass from her hand, he set it on the bar. A hand slid down her arm and pulled her onto a dance floor already crowded with bodies. No talking needed, she didn't feel the least compelled to ask a name. Neither did he.
Multiple songs laced with Spanish guitar wrapped around them. And after dancing in a very deliberate way, he kissed her. The kind of kiss that makes a girl want to acquiesce all of her morals immediately. Lips surrounded by an unshaven face against her pale mouth.
They never spoke but as time lazily sauntered by, the percussion in the room sent morse code to both of them. And as day was beginning to yawn awake, he said, "Come home with me."
She considered. Two hour's worth of filthy thoughts condensed into a five second vignette. She held that look and only said, "I can't." But words unsaid burned in her throat.
He paused, if not for consideration of his campaign, then to determine her commitment to this decline. His departure following a final brush of mouth across the inside of her hand.
Not regretting, but certainly supplying savage thoughts throughout the day. And possibly other days as well.
For him, perhaps a distant and infrequently recurring Dior-scented daydream. Permanency not intended, but rather an increasingly opaque memory and a now tattered postcard of Barcelona.
Many years ago, PK, my BFF's husband found a shirt of mine in their laundry. He held it up and asked, "Is this a dinner napkin?"
Oh, smarty. Of course it isn't. A dinner napkin lacks the strings to tie it around your back. And I assure you, at the time in question, tiny shirts were completely vogue.
A perfect demonstration fashion misconception works both ways.
JohnnyMac and I stopped at the dry cleaners to drop off a bundle. The dry cleaner held up my black Prada tube top and seemed puzzled. Puzzled before he turned to me and asked, "Are these your underwear?"
Wow....and no actually. First, these what? What is the plural reference? It is one item of clothing. I don't have clothing that ties together like a tourniquet.
Second, good to know that my tube top looks like underwear. Very chic.
Finally, a shirt that fits a majority of my torso and could basically be used as a small flag is not my underwear.
But I appreciate the realization that things come full circle.
PS: WHO is taking their underwear to the drycleaner????
When I was in high school, I briefly dated a college boy. Oh....I thought I was big stuff.
And lets be honest, by "dated" I mean that I thought he + me =TLF. Whereas he defined dating me as sending me lots of sweet cards and keeping my picture on his desk at school. The picture he would hurtle under a blanket or pile of books when after a long night of beer pong, he had company. Oh, young naive school girl.
But it paid dividends.
I went to see him one weekend when he was back in Seattle. After chatting with his family for a bit, he suggested we go to his room. Ummm, no thanks since your Mom and Dad are sitting here. He assured me he was considered a "man" in the house and they didn't care. Teenage boys...whats not to love about the bravado. It was a known policy in my house that males were not allowed in my room when my parents were home so I shirked his offer.
He then suggested we go to the park. Once there, it was all kinds of teen-age make out party. While I was not passing out the goods like candy, he definitively wanted to up the ante to our romantic interludes. Mere make out and the manhandling of my training bra, probably not as thrilling as CoEd Twister but alas...
And then he leans in with a sweet kiss, hand cupping my face, and asks, "Do you want to go downtown?"
"Well," I pondered, "I don't think we have time."
"I don't think it will take that long," he assured me. Big sweet eyes all on me.
"But, with traffic, it will take us a lot longer..."
Our eyes locked and then he started laughing. Not a nice courteous laugh like oh ha ha ha...more like GUFFAW GUFFAW GUFFAW like a man with a front row seat to the premier of Eddie Murphy's RAW.
I ask him the source of his amusement.
He says: You
Me: Head tilt, confused.
Him: I don't mean downtown Seattle.
Me: What other downtown is there?
He: GUFFAW GUFFAW GUFFAW
and then says: This downtown. And looks at his lap.
Here is an excellent tip for college boy that I never shared: Laughing uncontrollably to the point you actually slap your leg and dry heave because I was unaware that by asking me to go downtown you were in fact asking me for a beejy humdinger is not nice.
PS: It is also the perfect way to ensure I will never go downtown.
PSS: I never believed you that it would be permanently injured by blue balls. Naive, yes. That naive, oh no.
Innocent little lamb I was, I dropped him off and went home. Bleat bleat.
As I was reading the news last week, I saw something so special, so precious that I wondered how immediate could I obtain one too....
It is the head of Lil' Wayne. Made into a cake. And this is the cake Alec Baldwin got his daughter for her birthday this year. Now, why didn't I think of that in July when I celebrated? But JOY of all JOYS, its holiday time and I can have this at our holiday party. Because nothing says Yum Yum Yum like a big mouth full of Lil Wayne.
Besides the fact is just might be the ugliest cake I have ever laid these eyes upon, its an actual cake that was served at an actual party. So if I want this for our party, I better hot step it to find some other party elements that would only be fitting for such an occasion. Lucky for me, all I had to do is read the news for a week to find some g-e-m-s. And it will be such a smash, Martha Stewart should be calling me soon.
First, this dress. Oh, Katy Perry, you little gypsy. I know you like your cherry chapstick and your eclectic lyrics. You do have a wonderful voice on you, but when I spied this little costume, I thought WOW. And then Why does she get everything. But now I must have it for our One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Party.
And in order to make that large Christmas Tree dress fit me in spectacular fashion, I need to be in peak physical condition. When running alone no longer surmises, I mix it up by doing work out videos. When you think of superior female athletes, I am sure you are biased when you immediately think of Dana Torres, Marion Jones, or Mia Hamm. Oh, they're alright. But you are really missing a great opportunity if you neglect Kim Kardashian's Fit in Your Jeans by Friday. It matters not that you have never seen Kim Kardashian do any such physical activity, ever. Well, let me clarify: athletic activity. The video is all the proof we need.
And because you know I like to tear it up in the kitchen, this is the cookbook from which I will select all the party fare. How to be a Kitchen Pimp? Tell me more, Coolio. Oh, and you can buy your own on Amazon. com but be aware, there is filthy language throughout, but its still a fantastic voyage...slide slide slippity slide. And no, there is no recipe for special brownies either.
And since I will be SO engrossed in the kitchen getting ready, I need this. A motorized rolling pin. Because really, the holidays are not the time to ask how _____ lazy are you?
And I am serving only the finest wines. And no, I don't mean Boone's Farm. I am referencing Ed Hardy's new wine line up.
Because the guy who started his career making jeans and is now responsible for 100% of Dennis Rodman's wardrobe is the perfect sommelier for this five-star bash.
And what will my stocking stuffer be? Oh, this book called Flow. I know its natural, normal, and part of the feminine mystique. But it is a cultural story I am not interested in reading about a la coffee table book.
And what will we listen to? The best song ever: The Real Housewives of Atlanta singing "Tardy to the Party." Because anyone who wants to can have a song produced. Just ask Paris Hilton and that girl from The Hills.
And finally, my piece de resistance! The actor-cum-reality television show educator, Tony Danza will be our special guest. Why have a talk show when you can teach school in Philadephia? And while he is at our party, perhaps we can give him some tips.
One, don't put about quotes around your class room like "No moaning, no groaning" like you have already done. Come on now, that just sounds weird. PS: Not motivational.
Two, when asked by a parent of one of the 3000 students at Northeast High School where you will be teaching what makes you qualified to teach with no certification, you should give something more substantive than "I have spent months preparing." Perfect. I believe the children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way. Nevermind that other teachers we know spend years getting graduate degrees . The future of young minds is clearly no longer a concern when you spent entire months (plural) preparing to educate high school students. Only if you are Tony Micelli. (And yes, I know its only one class a day. Reality TV making great contributions to the world. )
And finally, maybe you should not use this photo in the yearbook there, Silky.
Why wouldn't Martha call me? After all, I do have Lil' Wayne cake.
It is official. As of this weekend, I have officially moved (and without incident oh please for the love of all things holy don't let me get jinxed for saying that) from blogspot to my own domain, http://www.letshaveacocktail.com. If you are reading this, you found it. All you have to do is update your links. Easy breezy. Thanks Blogger. I heart you.
It was by far the easiest move I have ever done. Because let's be candid, almost every other kind of moving, well, fills most people with contempt. The packing and unpacking which requires you to handle every single possession you own, oh, I am not a fan.
Because I am fully Type A (large font, bold, upper case Type A) dislike disorganization of most varieties, I will labor like a dervish to have every single box unpacked and all contents placed in their appropriate location in one day. Bet on it.
When I finished law school, I discovered the most awesome technique for packing your entire house and moving: Get your older brother to do it. (Thanks again Tumble). When I offered my paltry help to put the boxes in the moving truck we rented, he only advised me to stand back as he packed that vehicle with all the precision of a engineer. MIT would be proud.
However, my brother was not always present to assist. If he was, I could have avoided a debacle. Many years ago, moving from one apartment to another in the same building, some friends offered to help because it was so close. So I packed up my kitchen. But because social obligations were more appealing than packing, and because my new apartment was a mere 100 yards away, I thought we could just carry things over. And by we, I mean me and these five male friends who willingly offered to ruin their morning doing manual labor ( bribes of food and alcohol notwithstanding.) Sounds like a nice suggestion until you are actually doing it.
When my friends arrived, they seem puzzled by the limited number of packed boxes until I explained my plan. Five incredulous looks welcomed me to a deep dark day of moving. I quickly offered and guaranteed monetary reward for this endeavor. It took us hours just to get the living room moved. Primarily due to my hundreds of books. And gobs of furniture. Oh. It. SUCKED.
We started in the early am and by late afternoon, we had hours to go. At least we had music. Isn't moving more fun with Sir Mix-a-lot? Slightly. Finally, several of us decided to take a pause. One friend, Dr. J, came in the new place, saw us, and asked what we were doing. As we were laughing over some anecdote, I said we were taking a break. To which Dr. J responded. "THERE ARE NO BREAKS ON MOVING DAY! GET THE ______ UP!" Scared straight into obedience, I was most surprised because at no time prior (nor since) have I ever heard Dr. J use the F word. Moving, it brings out the best in everyone.
We finally finished around midnight marking the moment I would never again exploit friends for this hideous task. Cold cash much more effective than pizza and six packs of Sam Adams. Professionals much more effective than your friends who will hate you if you ask them to help you move again.
And a few months ago, JohnnyMac was out with some of his pals. One friend, moving from the suburbs to the city, solicited their help in his chore. Several unwilling friends offered up the bad back or bad knee syndrome. JohnnyMac who quite possibly dislikes the task of moving more than me, looked at him and said, "No bad back excuse needed. NO. And aren't you 40? In a non-emergency situation? Hire movers. "
I appreciate every reader and am so appreciative of the Blog Awards. Thank you for giving me some big blog love. I am a touch behind on Awards posting so today is part I of the Awards Bash. Part II is next Sunday. Here is my dress. Do you like?
Just kidding...I am wearing that next weekend to a holiday bash. This is my frock of choice. Oh, its pretty.
Shall we fetch something good to drink and get down to business? Let us recognize some great people who have donned my mantle with some new awards:
JadeLD gave me my own I Give Good Blog Award. I hope you always think so.
Leigh at Leigh vs. Laundry gave me a Trifecta: Thank you for the My Friends Award, the BadAss Blogger Award, and also the debut of your own most gorgeous award, the Remarkable Reader Award.
VodkaLogic shared the Dragon Loyalty Award with me. Right back at you VL! And Sharon at Bookish Blonde gave me the Premium Meme Award. With this comes 5 things I love in 5 categories. Thank you Sharon.
And much love to Holly And Charisse and Life Laugh Latte for the Lafaunda Award and the HotShot Award. Nicole at YoungMamaBlog, thank you for the Honest Scrap Award which comes with ten things you don't know about me. And beautiful Liz at But then I had kids gave me the Zombie Chicken Award. I am feeling very Zen! Much appreciation Tami G at Everyday in Gray for the Over the Top Award. Beautiful. And Savage, I love the You're a Great Read Award. Thank you both very much.
To combine elements, I am going to do all of the category awards into one Honest Scrap. And here are Ten Things You Don't Know About Me:
1. My favorite candy bar: Vosges Goji Berry. Heaven. Vosges Haute Chocolat...thank me later for introducing you.
2. Last concert: Ray Lamontagne Acoustic at Fox Theater in Atlanta. In-cred-i-ble.
3. First car: '67 Mustang (well, actually it was a "tricked out" yellow and black Baja VW my Father gave me but that's a bratty story and I didn't drive it long.)
4. Last meal: At a gorgeous new restaurant in Atlanta called 4th and Swift last night.
5. Favorite holiday song: Sinead O'Connor's version of Silent Night.
6. I was once asked to address a friend's wedding invitations. She likes my handwriting so I said, Of course. There seemed to be hundreds of invitations and I apparently needed a break when after handing her a huge stack she brought one back to me. The one for my parents. In which, in over-zealous interest in getting them all done in one day, I had misspelled BOTH of my parents names on their invite. Nice.
7. I didn't learn to really cook until several years after I was out of graduate school.
8. The first time I ever went fishing was off the coast of Alaska. I don't truly enjoy fishing but the experience was incredible.
9. Seeing people suffering at the holidays (or anytime of year) is heartbreaking to me. Give give give to charity!
10. I love music and have over 2100 songs on my iPod. Everything from Italian opera to The Ramones.
Now, before I go further, I want you to go and visit these blogs above. Diverse, interesting, and able to keep you from getting other things done. And I am giving each of them the Remarkable Reader Award I got from Leigh. So: Jade LD, April, Tami, Tami, VodkaLogic, Jenni, Kys, Sharon, Holly & Charisse, Nicole, Liz, and Savage: Enjoy.
This by no means excludes so many other great bloggers I know. Thank you all for the awards, the comments, and for reading. Part II coming soon.
I know you like your chocolate. So I've got a little something for you: Cookie Dough Truffles. Here is an easy fix for your chocolate-based addiction, and a fun twist on class truffles (which I have made many times and will confirm truffles are one thing I would rather just purchase.)
This makes five dozen but you can go ahead and tell everyone it only makes 1 dozen and hoard the rest to yourself. Buon Appetito!
Cookie Dough Truffles
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup semisweet mini chocolate morsels
1 1/2 pounds chocolate bark candy coating, melted
In a large bowl cream butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy. Add vanilla. Gradually beat in flour and add milk. Add chocolate morsels mixing well. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place on waxed paper; chill 2 hours. *Cook's Note: Since the dough is sticky, roll your fingers into flour. This will make it easier to roll.
Melt chocolate bark candy coating in a double boiler. Using 2 forks, dip cookie balls into candy coating to cover. Place on waxed paper and chill to set. Store in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
And Happy Birthday this weekend to our friend Tracie at Stir-Fry Awesomeness. Celebrate, good times, come on....