Saturday, December 22, 2012

Not exactly in the Christmas spirit?

This time of year, most people make lists of things they're thankful for, or perhaps a list of resolutions for the new year. Me? Not so much. I know what I'm thankful for; I don't need a list. And I don't make New Year's resolutions. So for those of you out there, like me, who may be feeling a bit Grinch-y this year, I give you instead a list of Things That Piss Me Off. These are in no particular order, and I only stopped at 12 because, you know, 12 Days of Christmas and all that jazz. Enjoy, and Happy Holidays! 

1. Teeny tiny pregnant women who insist on posting their adorably teeny tiny baby bumps all over Instagram/Facebook/insert random social media site here. Every.Single.Week.
Just stop. I understand you're excited to be pregnant, I would be too. And I have nothing against skinny women, it just seems that the majority who are guilty of this happen to be super-thin to begin with, their bumps nearly non-existent. But honestly, do I need to see a picture of your belly every week? It looks exactly the same as it did last week, in case you were wondering. Maybe try spacing them out to once a month. 

2. People who are not handicapped but park in handicapped parking spots.
You are a douche.

3. People who create internet memes with spelling mistakes in them. 
If you're going to take the time to create a meme, at least use spell check or something. Damn. 

Find the annoying typo.

4. People whose only photos on Instagram/Streamzoo/insert random photo sharing network here are only of themselves. 
Ten thousand shots of you in your bathroom mirror. No thanks. Go outside, take a picture of a flower or something. 

5. HBO/Starz/Encore/insert other movie channel here.
There are only so many times I can watch Titanic and Bad Teacher. Start rotating your movies more frequently. Thanks.

6. The end of the world on the internet.
Yes, we all know the world did not end, obviously. But holy shit, for days leading up to 12/21/12, I was sorely tempted to delete several people from my Facebook newsfeed. It was almost as bad as the days leading up to an election. Almost. And now that the world did not end, people won't stop posting about that. Enough already.


7. Winter.
I hate the cold. I hate snow. I hate everything involving the cold and snow.

8. Super vague promos for new TV shows.
How about showing me something that actually tells me something about the show, so I can decide whether or not I want to watch it?

9. The Yankees' signing of Kevin Youkilis.
From yankees.comKevin Youkilis hopes that he'll receive a positive reception when he bats for the first time at Yankee Stadium wearing pinstripes. Of course, he won't really be able to tell for sure.
"I'd guess they're all going to sound the same," Youkilis said. "It will be all mixed in, so I'm going to take it as they're all saying, 'Youk.'"
It's cute that he thinks that. But I'm gonna go with "Boo."

10. The absence of hockey this year.
Football and basketball bore the shit out of me. I look forward to hockey season. But this year the NHL fucked it up. And instead of just coming out and canceling the entire season, they're canceling it in increments. For example, from nhl.comThe National Hockey League announced today the cancellation of the 2012-13 regular-season schedule through January 14. The cancellations are necessary due to the absence of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NHL Players' Association and the NHL. A total of 625 regular-season games—50.8 percent of the season—were scheduled for October 11 through January 14.
Yeah, I think it's safe to say there's just no hockey this year. So just say it. 

Sad hockey player. :(
11. When my DVR cuts off the last 30 seconds of a show, and you just know you missed something  funny or important. 
So fucking annoying. 

12. People with an undeserved sense of entitlement.
The world doesn't owe you shit. Work for it like everyone else.


Friday, December 14, 2012

Conversations With My Sister #2

If you don't remember what this is, or never had an idea what it is, refer back to this post: Conversations With My Sister #1.

So last weekend my sister and I had lunch and did some Christmas shopping with our aunt and our mom (too much hilariousness in one day, really). We were in Macy's, I believe, and talking about Christmas songs, when my sister said "I swear if I hear "Last Christmas" one more time I'll scream. I'm sorry, but no, George Michael. It's been the "Last Christmas" for like 20 years."

I laughed so hard. Mind you, this is actually my favorite Christmas song. Don't judge.

Maybe an hour later, we're in Old Navy and "Last Christmas" comes on. I hear it right away and start smiling really big. My sister looks at me and says "What?" So I just said "Listen!" and pointed to the ceiling. The look on her face was one I'll never forget, and completely made my day. :)

And because I couldn't write this post and not include the actual song, here you go. Enjoy!



Love you, sis!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

NYC New York Color IndividualEyes Custom Compact

"Straight from the city that never sleeps, NYC New York Color offers products with uptown style at down-to-earth prices, from $.99 - $4.99. The energy, style, and color of New York City shines through the wide range of shades, textures and innovative products. NYC always delivers the most on-trend products & shades hot off the runway!"

I've always loved NYC New York Color's makeup line. Plus, I love eye makeup. So when I received the NYC New York Color IndividualEyes Custom Compact from Influenster to test, I was thrilled and couldn't wait to play! 


NYC New York Color's all-in-one compact gives you everything you need for a complete eye look: primer, illuminator, applicator and complementing shadows. With four vibrant colors designed for your eye color, you can create a look as individual as you are!


The color palette I received is called "Dark Shadows," and looks like this:

"Dark Shadows" NYC New York Color IndividualEyes Custom Compact.

The other color schemes offered are: Union Square (Brown Eyes), Bryant Park (Blue Eyes), Central Park (Green Eyes), Smokey Browns, Smokey Blues, and Smokey Greens. Plenty to choose from!

The fact that everything you need is included in the same compact is wonderful. Primer, illuminator, and four complementing shadows, as well as an applicator. My only complaint is that I wish they had included more than one applicator, for example one for the shadows and one for the primer. 

I followed the included instructions as closely as possible for my first try. They really do make it easy.

Easy to follow instructions.

I also used my usual liquid liner and my usual mascara to create a complete look. I went out for a few hours and everything stayed in place. No smudging or creasing, yay! That primer really does work. Here are some photos of my first attempt. It's not super dramatic or anything, but I really loved it. I always feel really put together when my eye makeup comes out good. :)














Overall I was pretty impressed with the results, and have continued to use the product, practicing and perfecting different looks. The combination of colors makes my eyes pop and works nicely with my existing liner and mascara. I'm now considering going and buying the Central Park (Green Eyes) palette, just to see what I can do with it and how different it is. Thanks NYC New York Color!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 15

Dear Chuckles,

It's been 6 months today, August 21.
That's half a year since I lost you, and I miss you every day.
This summer has been so hard, getting used to not doing the things I used to do with you. One of the things I missed the most was taking you to run around Grandma's backyard like it was your own private dog park, attack the hose and deflate the basketball, or soccer ball, or whatever you could find. Those were always my favorite days. Just me and you hanging out in the sunshine, playing and being happy. Like this....


And I miss taking you to the beach and watching you do this to the water:

video

Watching both of those videos just made me laugh and cry at the same time.

As rough as it's been getting used to doing things without you, I know there are some even rougher times ahead...Halloween, when you'd hang out on the balcony with me and sniff all the kids I gave candy to...Thanksgiving, when I'd always bring you home turkey from Grandma's...Christmas...well I can't even think about Christmas without you knocking the ornaments off the tree or happily humping your new basketball under the tree.

I recently saw this picture on Facebook and was so touched by it I cried for a good hour:

So true.
Every time Trixie rolls over for a belly rub, I feel you. When I hear a big dog bark, I feel you. The other day when I realized there are still muddy paw prints all over the back seat of my car, I felt you giving me that big happy puppy smile. And sometimes, when I'm upset, I swear I can feel you pushing your big head into me, trying to cheer me up.
I love you Chuckles.

Love,
Mommy

Monday, July 23, 2012

So, this stuff happened.

I've been lucky in that I haven't been unemployed for more than 2 months since the year 2002, and I've certainly never been unemployed during the summer. However, since I lost my job earlier this year, I have to say that the past few months have been one of the most amazing and fun times of my life. I've spent time with family and friends, laughed so much, relaxed, regained most of my sanity, and oh yeah, got married.
Best. Summer. Ever.



I also learned and experienced quite a few new things, such as....

I learned how to play roulette (kind of).
I learned how to play oo-roulette (not really).
I found out that my husband is pretty awesome at pool. 4 1/2 years and I never knew that.
I learned that I get a kick out of saying "my husband."
And he gets just as much of a kick out of saying "my wife."
I had my first ever professional massage.
I learned that it took 44 hair pins (probably more...some fell out on the dance floor), 2 hair ties, and lots of hairspray to tame my hair into this style.

Hair & makeup by Ambiance Hair Designs, Wildwood, NJ.

Josh helped me remove the pins at the end of the night, which makes him awesome.

I learned that there is always going to be someone who I want to punch in the face. Always.
I was reminded that unless it's the Electric Slide or some other coordinated line-type dance, I can't dance for shit. And I don't care.
I learned that it's possible to be so relaxed that nothing at all can stress me out.
I learned that that type of relaxation is pretty short-lived, but wonderful nonetheless.
I learned that people are apparently desperate enough to steal unused table cameras from wedding receptions. True story.
I found out that it is possible to not have the American Idol finale ruined for me. Yay Phillip Phillips!

This is Phillip Phillips performing "Movin' Out" by Billy Joel. So good.




I experienced for the first time a full-blown snit from my cat. She was so pissed at us for leaving her for over a week (even though she had people visiting and taking care of her every day), that she wanted nothing to do with us for the first hour or so we were home. She actually had to be coaxed out and convinced to let us pet her. This from the cat who's constantly meowing for attention. Brat.

I learned (actually I already knew, but it was reinforced) that you don't need to spend $50,000 to have an awesome wedding.
I learned that jumping into a cold pool after being in a hot tub feels SO good.
I was reminded that everyone in Wildwood is a Phillies fan. Or a Flyers fan. Yuck.
I learned that it's now 12 tickets per person for the haunted house ride on the pier. That's just ridiculous.
I learned that it's freaking cold in Wildwood at night in May.

I went to the new Yankee Stadium for the first time and it was awesome. Great weather, great day with the family, and the Yankees won.

My family is the coolest.

I've been cooking more now that I actually have the time. Since Josh is super-picky, I pick out a few recipes and have him pick from them, and then I make whatever he picks. It's been working pretty well, and I've made some very yummy things. Next up: raspberry lemonade cake. However, all of this reminds me how much it sucks that I can't afford (and cannot get financing for) culinary school. Le sigh.

We got a new TV in the bedroom and I've recently been reminded how nice it is to watch TV in bed.
I had my first lobster cutlet sandwich. Holy shit yum.
I've been reminded how nice it is to go to the beach during the week when everyone else is at work.
I started using Google Chrome and now I don't want to use anything else ever.

I found SongPop. Actually, my sister introduced me to it. It's a kind of name-that-tune type game you play against other people, and I'm addicted. And yes, it is indeed possible to guess "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?" in 0.8 seconds.

I'm pretty quick most of the time.

I'm going on my first ever hot air balloon ride this Saturday, and I could not be more excited!
I learned that daytime TV sucks for the most part.
I learned that not having a normal schedule does not make my insomnia happy.
I found out that my cousin Tim is an amazing artist and my cousin Mike is an amazing chef.
I learned that I do not have nearly enough wall space for all the things I want to put on the walls.
I learned that I do not have nearly enough kitchen counter space for all the things that are still in their boxes because they need to go on the counters.
I learned that the first couple of months after the wedding are financially crap.
I realized that whenever HBO puts Goodfellas in the rotation, I end up watching it at least 10 times.

"How am I funny?"

I realized that I have not been to a concert/show yet this year. That must be rectified.
I learned that my biggest Pyrex bowl is indeed breakable. Now I am sad.
I learned that I literally cannot fit one more thing into my storage unit.
I learned that reconnecting with an old friend can be wonderful (depending on the friend of course).
I realize and admit that I am now fully addicted to Pinterest. Follow me if you like, user name melanietheresa.
I realized that my sinus issues are getting worse as I get older.
I now have ten tattoos. Two so far this year. Counting it all up, it's 28 hours worth of work.

My 10th tattoo. Learn more at fixthechapel.com!

I learned quite a bit about trust in my former work environment. 

I learned that I do not miss commuting to NYC at all.
I realized that there are far too many movies I haven't seen.
I realized that the inspection on my car is up this year, and there's no way in hell it's passing again.
I learned that there are people who suck at life worse than I do. That made me feel better.
I have decided that family is not always defined by blood. I don't have to love you if you're an asshole.


And the most interesting, and slightly shocking (at least to me) thing that I've learned in the past few months:
Once in a very great while, you really can please everyone.


Dear Chuckles, Part 14

Dear Chuckles,

I can't believe it's been 5 months since I lost you.
I miss your face. So much.

Love,
Mommy

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 13

Dear Chuckles,

Been thinking about you alot lately, boy. It's hard to be as happy or excited as I feel like I should be considering I'm getting married in 5 days, because I'm very aware that the day after my wedding will be exactly 3 months since I lost you. It feels like so much longer, yet at the same time it feels like just yesterday you were stealing Josh's spot in the bed as soon as he left for work.

(Side Note: Anyone who thinks it's stupid that I'm still sad about losing my dog after only 3 months should stop reading now. And should probably never speak to me again.)

I know that you loved to make me happy, and I know that you want me to be happy now. And I am, baby. But there's a piece of my heart that will never heal, because it was you.

Wherever you are, I know that you'll be checking in on us on our wedding day, probably thankful that I'm not able to make you wear a tie and stand still for the whole ceremony (as if you standing still for more than 5 minutes was ever an option).

I love you Chuckles. Though I wish you'd lived to see it, I know that you'll be with us on that day, in all your joyful puppy spirit.

Love,
Mommy

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Coldplay Conundrum

Anyone who knows me well knows that my music tastes are and have always been all over the spectrum. From Pantera to Tori Amos, from Snoop Dogg to NOFX, from Depeche Mode to Eric Clapton, from 311 to Eminem to Beethoven to Bauhaus to John Lennon....I'm sure you get the point. I'll listen to almost anything. Almost anything - Audioslave makes my ears bleed.

A few short years ago, I had Coldplay in my "makes my ears bleed, avoid at all costs" file along with Audioslave, Limp Bizkit, and what I consider to be the worst 3 songs in the world: that awful, awful song "Blinded By the Light" by Manfred Mann, "Carry On My Wayward Son" by Kansas, and "Tears of a Clown" by Smokey Robinson. I could probably do an entire post on just those 3 songs. And maybe I will at some point. But seriously, just thinking about all 3 songs at the same time is making my head want to explode, so back to the story at hand.

I simply could not stand Coldplay when I first heard them, and I wanted nothing more than for Chris Martin to shut the fuck up. I'd make a face every time my sister would play one of their songs. I'd change the radio station (this was back when I was still listening to radio) the minute I heard the opening bars of "Yellow." Then, "Clocks" and "The Scientist." I really couldn't stand them at all. And so, Coldplay was relegated to the "please don't make me listen to this" file and put away.

Here and there over the years I would hear Coldplay-related news, like the whole Chris Martin/Gwyneth Paltrow thing, and just couldn't really make myself care. Chris Martin just seemed like such a pompous fuck, which incidentally is also how I feel about Bono, if anyone's keeping score. And so, when I saw the 420 episode of Family Guy, when Peter's too baked to set up a cutaway and just lists a bunch of celebrities he doesn't like, I laughed really hard. Chris Martin, Chris Martin again, Chris Martin's parents...and then at the end, Chris Martin's ancestors. Hilarious. See below (this was the best quality of this clip I could find).



Anyway, Coldplay fell completely off my radar, because really, why wouldn't they? Fast forward to 2010. I'm watching So You Think You Can Dance (don't judge, it entertains me), and I hear this song that I immediately fall in love with. I look down at the bottom of the screen at it says "Viva La Vida" - Coldplay. Picture my stunned face. Thought process: "I'm sorry, what? I like a Coldplay song? And not only like, but absolutely love love love it? No! No, unacceptable." So after the episode is over, I download the song. And I still love it. Thought process: "Oh, crap. After all the shit I gave Sarah for liking Coldplay....well, she just can't know, that's all." I swore Josh to secrecy and he never said a word. By the way, the song was actually released in 2008, which just proves how off my radar Coldplay really was.



Seriously, I could not get enough of this song. Ok, now fast forward another year to 2011 and another season of So You Think You Can Dance. One couple does a beautiful dance to a really beautiful song. I look down at the bottom of the screen, and there it is. "Fix You" - Coldplay. Thought process: "Goddammit. This cannot be happening." But it was indeed happening. I had fallen in love with not one, but two Coldplay songs.



Beautiful, right? This one was released in 2005, and So You Think You Can Dance turned me on to it in 2011. At some point during that year, I came clean to my sister about how much I adored "Viva La Vida." I think I actually started the conversation with something like "Don't make fun of me, but..." And she actually didn't, she just agreed that it was an amazing song and she loved it to. I love my sister.

Now, the latest. Last night I was watching American Idol.  I know you want to judge that, and I just don't care. Phillip Phillips is fucking awesome. That is all.
Anyway, Coldplay performed last night, in honor of it being "BritPop" week. They performed 2 songs. The first was "Paradise" and holy shit I loved it. LOVED it in capital letters. Here's the video.




Ok, the video's freaking weird, and for some reason the band is dressed like elephants, but man do I love that song. A whole lot. And then, Coldplay performed the song "Every Teardrop is a Waterfall." Yep, Idol gave them two performances. Because they're Coldplay, obviously, and Idol was clearly kissing their asses big time. And guess what? I loved that song too. I love "Paradise" more, but still. -sigh-




Turns out these two songs are from their most recent album, so apparently I am now up to date on Coldplay, which is something I never thought I'd say. I have resigned myself to the fact that I love the songs above, and that it's entirely possible that I may like some of their future songs. However, I still absolutely cannot stand their earlier songs, stated at the beginning of the post. "Clocks?" Puke.

So, I guess I can officially say that I am a fan of the "later" Coldplay. I'm owning it. They've been added to my iTunes, Pandora, and Spotify playlists. Well played, Coldplay, well played.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

I'm no saint.

1. What is the origin of your first name? What about any nicknames?
Melanie: From the French form of the Latin name Melania, derived from Greek μελαινα (melaina) meaning "black, dark." This was the name of a Roman saint who gave all her wealth to charity in the 5th century. Her grandmother was also a saint with the same name.
The name was common in France during the Middle Ages, and it was introduced from there to England, though it eventually became rare. Interest in it was revived by the character Melanie Wilkes from the novel 'Gone with the Wind' (1936) and the subsequent movie adaptation (1939).

You probably thought I was just that smart. Nah, copied and pasted. And here is Saint Melania herself.

St. Melania the Younger
2. Have you any claims to fame?
I'm awesome. Duh.

  3. If you were famous, how would you introduce yourself to someone who had never heard of you?
Hi, I'm Melanie. This is a lame question. Next.

4. Which of your country’s achievements do you hold in highest regard?
There is no way for me to intelligently answer this question because I am highly opposed to speaking of politics in any manner. So here's a picture of a kid and a dog on a beach.

Cute, right?

5. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
For a while I wanted to be a teacher...turns out I would never have had the patience to teach other people's brats on a daily basis.

6. What was your most prized possession as a child? Do you still have it?
I had a teddy bear who was named White Teddy. I actually do still have him in storage somewhere. Perhaps he is the reason for my lifelong love of teddy bears. Seriously, I have a bunch of different ones. And nowhere to put them. It's a problem.

Hmm, I don't have this one...

7. What would you change about yourself, if you could?
My bank account. 

8. What are you obsessed with?
Right now? My wedding, I guess. Only 5 weeks out...holy shit.

9. What is your greatest achievement so far, or the high point of your career?
I don't fucking know. I hate questions like this. I've been published a few times, both for photography and for modeling. Those are pretty awesome achievements as far as I'm concerned.

10. When/where were you happiest?
At the beach. I'm always happiest at the beach.

LBI, NJ, July 2011

11. And the lowest point in your life thus far?
1994 and 2003. 

12. What was the best decision you ever made?
Leaving. 

13. If you have any body modifications, which was most painful, or which do you regret the most? If you haven’t got any, do you have any planned, or would you ever consider getting any?
Most painful: inner forearm tattoo.
I don't regret any of them.
I have 9 tattoos and a ton more planned.
Here's a photo of my latest, my Maneki Neko. Done on 4/6/12 by Rick Schreck at House of 1000 Tattoos.


14. What is the most idiotic thing you have ever done while intoxicated?
The list would be shorter if I told you the smart things I’d done while intoxicated.

15. What is your favorite joke?
Carson Daly. Oh, you said “what," not “who." Oh, well…moving on.

16. What is the coolest/most impressive thing you own?
I don't know. I'm not trying to impress anyone.

17. When did you last cry, and why?
Eh. The other day. Missing Chuckles.

18. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever had?
"Cut yourself some slack." Or "give yourself a break." Or "stop being so hard on yourself." All good advice. Am I following it? Meh.

19. Similarly, what’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for you?
The nicest thing anyone has ever done for me in my entire life was when a random good Samaritan witnessed my giant car accident in 1996 and ran across a 6 lane highway to stay with me and talk to me until help arrived. This Samaritan will have his own post on this blog in the not-too-distant future.

20. Have you any vices?

Smoking and shopping.

21. Do you regret anything?
I shall steal a line from The Bouncing Souls: "Things just happened to turn out this way; I can't say I have no regrets today." And because I love it, here's the song that line belongs to. Live, no less.




22. What is the best invention ever?
Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. Oh yes.

You know you want one now.

23. How would you describe your relationship with your family?
Close.

24. Who is your biggest inspiration?
My mom, and my late Chuckles. 

25. What are you going to do when you’ve finished doing this?
Finish watching VH1's 40 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 90s. I'm so entertained.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 12

Dear Chuckles,

Do you think you can do me a favor, Pup? Wherever you guys are, can you check up on Rigby, and maybe give him a hug from his mommy? She's missing him so very much right now. He's only been there a few months longer than you have, and it's still so hard for both of us to be without both of you.

And while you're at it, if you could find it in your heart to give Deegan a hug from his mommy too, that would be wonderful. Though he's been gone much longer than you and Rigby, she still misses him so much.

I know that you know how much Aunt Sarah and Grandma loved you, so I know you'll do this for them, and for me.

Thank you, my sweet boy. I love you.

Love,
Mommy

Monday, April 9, 2012

My sarcastic superpowers have met their match.

This is an actual conversation which took place between Josh and I while we were watching TV the other night:

Josh: Wow, Stevie Nicks looks great. She's gotta be in her sixties, right?
Me: I think so.
Josh: Look it up.
Me: I don't feel like going over to the computer to look it up.
Josh: You know your phone's a computer, right?
Me: Shut up.

Listen, I'm late to the whole smart phone party, so yes, I tend to forget that I have a computer right there at my fingertips. Josh had one long before me, so he's way used to it by now, and enjoys being a smartass. Which I suppose is fair seeing as I'm a sarcastic bitch. Match made in heaven, folks.

By the way, I did look it up on my phone, and Stevie Nicks is 64.
And because she's awesome, here's "Stand Back," my personal favorite of hers. Enjoy.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 11

Dear Chuckles,

Can't sleep tonight, boy. So sad. Missing you a whole lot. Thinking that all I want is to hug you one more time, and I'd never let go.

Love,
Mommy

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 10

Dear Chuckles,

It's been 5 weeks since I lost you. I miss you so much. Every time Josh leaves the apartment and I'm alone, I miss you even more. When I was cleaning things out yesterday, I was thinking about you the whole time, and wishing you were here to get underfoot and make me laugh, to be goofy and dance around the apartment with me. Even the building maintenance guys said that it feels strange here without you. You touched more people than you know, pup.

I want you to know that as part of our wedding favors, we'll be donating to the Humane Society in your memory. It doesn't bring you back, and it doesn't change the fact that I'm lost without you, but it's something.

It was thundering before, and it made me cry. Because my first thought upon hearing the thunder was "oh no, poor Chuckles." But then it kicked in that you're not here, so you're not afraid of the thunder anymore. As a matter of fact, perhaps you caused it while galloping after the hordes of squirrels I'm sure you're torturing.

I think about you all the time. And I know that I'll never stop missing you.

Love,
Mommy

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 9

Dear Chuckles,

So guess what I found stuck under the TV stand in the bedroom? One more tennis ball. Yep, another one. I'm thinking this is the last one though, so I labeled it and will keep in it your honor. One of my friends said that this is your way of sending me love. I like that. Thank you, boy. I love you too.

That's right, 101.
In other news, I've started called Trixie CatDog because she's been doing many more things lately more suited to a dog than a cat. She always mimicked you, but now it's like she's trying to fill the void you left. She runs to the door to greet us when we come home now. She wants tons of belly rubs. She'll throw herself on our feet upside down so we rub her belly. It's eerily almost exactly what you would do. She begs for dinner at 8pm on the dot every single night. She follows me everywhere, as you used to. And she attempts to police me at night when my insomnia is keeping me awake, just like you used to. If she thinks it's too late, she meows and paws at me until I give in and go to bed, and then she follows me into the bedroom and cuddles with me. She misses you, boy.

I miss you, too. I know I'll always miss you.

Love,
Mommy

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Kiss Nail Dress

Fashion That Sticks
Introducing Kiss Nail Dress, ultimate nail fashion for tips and toes! Just peel, apply, and shape for a manicure that lasts up to 10 days. On in minutes, off in seconds without remover. Nail Dress is available in 18 different styles, many of them featuring 3-dimensional jeweled designs. Check out Peplum, a deep black with multi-colored gems for a pop of color, or Babydoll, for a golden and glamorous jeweled look. Skip the topcoat, Nail Dress has it built in.

With 28 strips in each package, you can cut up your extras to create designs that can be used on top of polished or artificial nails. Nail Dress doesn’t dry out the way other polish strips can, so you can save them to use on your next DIY mani. A nail design booklet is included in each package, just in case you need a little inspiration.

And don’t forget about your feet! Nail Dress looks awesome on toes, too – just use the square side of the sticker for a perfect fit.

______________________________________________________________

I recently received a complimentary package of Kiss Nail Dress for review & testing purposes through the Influenster program, which you should also check out. The design I received is called "Shrug," which makes no sense but doesn't really matter. At the time I applied them, my nails were pretty long, which in my opinion made them look even cooler. Several of my nails have broken since then, but that's my own fault. I'm hell on my nails. And rings. I can screw up any ring I wear. But I digress...

These were honestly really easy to apply. You choose the correct size for your nail, position it where you want it, and smooth it down, folding the leftover over the end of your nail. Quick tip: the packaging does not tell you this, but I found it to be much easier when I used a scissor to trim the leftover first, and then file the rest off. Once you do a couple, it becomes easier and goes faster. 

Here's what mine looked like when I was done applying:

Kiss Nail Dress in "Shrug"
Looks pretty awesome, right? I love them. Got a ton of compliments on them, and quite a few people asked me if I had it done at a nail salon. They lasted about 6 days before I noticed any chipping or wear at all, which is pretty good in my opinion. Super easy to remove, too! Simply peel, and they come off in one piece. If some of the leftover adhesive sticks to your nail, nail polish remover takes care of that, as I discovered. :)

Now that I've tried them, I want to try the zebra and leopard designs and oh so many others. I love doing my own nails. But let's be honest, this was way easier and less messy than polish (plus no nail polish smell), and at $6.99 a pop, pretty affordable.

Hot pink zebra nails, here I come!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 8

Dear Chuckles,

It was exactly 3 weeks ago today that I lost you, my sweet boy.

Today I cleaned up the rest of your toys, and it sucked. I won't lie and pretend that I didn't sit on the floor hugging your duck (you know, the one you loved so much that you ate its beak off) and crying. I did. For a very long time.
But then, as I was moving some of the other toys aside so I could stand up, I found 2 stray tennis balls. And I just started laughing. Tears still streaming down my face, still hugging the duck, but laughing all the same. That brings your grand total to exactly 100 tennis balls, Chuck. You crazy mutt.

I was already very sad today to begin with because it was absolutely beautiful out, the kind of day I would have taken you for a ride in the car just for the hell of it, or maybe taken you to Grandma's to wreak havoc in the backyard. But I can't do those things anymore (although technically I guess you did get to come for the ride when I went to the store, since I'm wearing my pendant). Living without you isn't getting any easier.

Love,
Mommy

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 7

Dear Chuckles,

Grandma told me today that ever since we put a piece of you in her backyard, she's had more squirrels than ever running around. It made me smile more than anything has for the past 2 weeks, because in my head I was picturing a ghost version of you gleefully chasing the squirrels all over the yard while Grandma looks on and wonders why the hell there are squirrels everywhere.

I hope you're chasing all the squirrels you want, boy.

Love,
Mommy

Friday, March 9, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 6

Dear Chuckles,

Today it was so beautiful outside that I decided to take a walk around the neighborhood, which I haven't done since the last time I walked you. So I walked along the path we called your "long walk," and pictured you in my head the entire way. I could see you sniffing every bush, peeing on every tree, trying to pull me across the street because you saw another dog. I could see you stopping to sniff the wind, chasing a squirrel unfortunate enough to cross your path, and running up to the neighbor's porch to visit (and for a cookie, of course).

And despite the beautiful weather, I did cry, but the sun dried my tears. Because I miss you, sweet boy. I miss you so very much.

Love,
Mommy

Monday, March 5, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 5

Dear Chuckles,

On Friday, we brought you to Grandma's to leave a piece of you there in your favorite backyard/personal dog park. On the ride over I kept picturing you with your head out the car window, big happy smile on your face, drool running down the outside of the car, ears flapping in the wind. The memory made me happy and sad at the same time.

Happy car dog! This one is from 2008.

We put you under what Grandma calls "the squirrel tree," which I thought to be perfect for you, since you had a personal vendetta against all squirrels and made it your business to chase at least one up a tree every day.

Josh and I also got pendants to wear in which we placed pieces of you. I didn't even know such a thing existed, but I thought it was a wonderful idea, and so did Josh. So now you and I will never be apart again, and you can't bitch at me for not taking you out, since you'll be with me every time I go anywhere.

My pendant.

The vet's office sent a beautiful card along with your paw print and a clipping of your fur. I cried, of course, because it made me wish even harder that I could pet you again. I miss you so much, and I can't believe it hasn't even been 2 weeks since I lost you. Every time I'm at the computer I can picture you coming down the hallway, walking up to the computer chair and pushing all of your weight into my leg so I'd scratch your butt. You always made me smile.

The other night all of the dogs in our courtyard were barking at something or other, and I could have sworn I heard your tough-guy bark in there somewhere.

Your presence was so much larger than life that it seems very empty here now. I realized the other night that if you were 14, that means I was 22 when we found you. Holy shit, boy. You and I went through so much together, and through it all you were my anchor in this crazy fucked up world. Saving you was the best thing I ever did, because you saved me right back, didn't you?

I love you Chuckles.

Love,
Mommy

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 4

Dear Chuckles,

We brought you home from the vet today. They of course did a beautiful job but nothing could stop the tears today. I know you hated to see me sad, but you gotta cut me some slack here, boy. At least you're home with me now, where you belong.

We're going to take you to Grandma's this weekend to leave a small piece of you there, since you were so very happy in that backyard. The basketball, the hose, the pool, the frisbee, the constant overturning of the water dish plus the fact that there was always someone there to play with...it was like your own personal dog park and it always made me so happy to see you so happy.

Appropriately, it's a rainy, nasty day outside. The kind of day you reveled in making me take you out multiple times, not because you really had to go, but just so you could get wet and splash in the puddles. I splashed a couple for you today.

I miss you every day, my water dog.

Love,
Mommy

Monday, February 27, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 3

Dear Chuckles,

I cleaned up your tennis balls today. Not your other toys, not yet, because just the tennis balls was emotional enough. But I had to do the tennis balls because, as you know, they were everywhere. Literally. I found one in one of Josh's shoes. I bet you smiled when you dropped it there, didn't you, my mischievous boy?

I started out crying, but as I began counting, and the number started to get higher, I started to smile. I smiled a little more when I found about 10 of them under the bed and remembered you happily taking one into the bedroom with you, chewing for about 15 minutes, and then coming back out to the living room to yap at us because you'd rolled it under the bed and couldn't get to it.

By the time I was finished, the grand total was 98 tennis balls of varying colors and in varying states of destruction. And I started to laugh a genuine laugh, not the fake laugh I'm currently using when I'm around people. 98, Puppers!! That's ridiculous and hilarious and just so very you.

Josh had guessed 100 and I had scoffed at him. Guess I owe someone an apology.

I know how you loved to make me happy, as I loved to make you happy. It seems you were determined to give me one last big laugh, and I want to thank you for that. I needed it right now. But you probably knew that. I love you, Chuckles.

Love,
Mommy

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 2

Dear Chuckles,

Today was the first time I left the house since that day, which means it was also the first time I've ever come home and you haven't greeted me. Let me tell you something, Puppyface, it fucking sucked. Alot. I think Trixie was trying to be you, because she ran to the door to greet and meow at me. Don't tell her, but it just wasn't the same.

I could see our whole routine play out in my head. You trotting up to greet me, wagging furiously, SO happy to see me though I'd only been gone a little while. Me asking if you were a good boy, and you running to the kitchen doorway to show me that you were indeed a good boy, with that huge happy smile on your face, tongue hanging out. Me trying to push past you to get the grocery bags into the kitchen, you thinking it was a game of some kind and blocking the doorway. Me taking my coat off while you stuck your nose into every bag to see if there was something for you. You drinking about a gallon of water and then proceeding to slobber it all over the kitchen as you watched me put the groceries away, not-so-patiently waiting to see if something for you would appear from one of the bags. Me finishing up and giving you a cookie and telling you what a good boy you were for waiting. And then you running to the door, yapping to go out. The memories brought out a small smile through the tears, but the tears were still there.

I miss our routines, and I miss you. So very much. I'd give anything to hear your claws clicking down the hallway again.

Love,
Mommy

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Dear Chuckles, Part 1

Dear Chuckles,

It's only been a little over 48 hours since I lost you, and I feel like a piece of my heart has been taken from me - the biggest part. I'm pretty sure you took it with you, and that's ok, because I know you hated to be apart from me, and now at least you'll always have a piece of me with you.

It's too quiet here without you. I miss you, boy.

Love,
Mommy

The hardest goodbye I've ever had to say.

Yesterday, 2/21/12, I had to say goodbye to my best friend. Chuck was everything that was good about the world rolled into 90 furry pounds of pure love, and for 14 years he was an amazing positive presence in my life. He outlasted a relationship, 4 jobs, and 5 cars. I cannot even express how very much I will miss him. I love you so much, Mr. Chuckles. I hope, wherever you are, that there are hundreds of basketballs for you to hump, endless belly rubs, and no little yappy dogs to bite your ankles. Be happy, my good boy, and rest in peace.
R.I.P. Mr. Chuckles 1997-2012

 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

I Stand...

I Stand Against Weight Bullying is a campaign designed in response to Georgia's misguided and harmful Strong4Life campaign against childhood obesity. Activist Marilyn Wann designed a template so that people could create their own version of the Strong4Life advertisement, featuring a more upbeat picture and inspirational message. I was made aware of the campaign through my friend Cruiser Dolly over at The Fun Between My Legs, which if you aren't reading already, you should be.


Here is my STANDard:


You can also see my STANDard, and all of the STANDards created so far, by clicking here.
Check out the write up in BBC News Magazine here.
Visit I Stand Against Weight Bullying on Facebook.
Create your own STANDard and get involved! Health at EVERY Size is what's important!

I would like to thank Marilyn Wann and everyone at I Stand Against Weight Bullying for allowing me to be a part of something so meaningful! Stand up to bullies! ♥

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I’m kind of a shoe whore.

1. Song that always makes you sad?
“Ave Maria” affects me like no other piece of music ever written.

2. Last thing you bought?
Gas. Shit’s expensive.



3. Last person you argued with?
Chuckles. Because he was yap yap yapping to go out and I didn’t want to take him. I’m cold now. Guess who won?

4. Do you put butter before putting the peanut butter on?
Ew, no.

5. One of your stuffed animals’ names as a kid?
White Teddy. He was a white teddy bear. Original, I know.

6. Did you ever at one time own a Barenaked Ladies CD?
Yep.

7. Favorite day of the week?
I like Saturdays.

8. Favorite sundae topping?
Hot fudge, hands down.

9. Did you take piano lessons?
No. But I can play "Heart & Soul" and Motley Crue's "Home Sweet Home."

10. Most frequent song played?
At bars – Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer”
On my iPod – Social Distortion’s “Story of My Life”



11. T.V. show you secretly enjoy?
I don’t think any of it’s a secret.

12. Would you rather play basketball or hockey?
No thanks.

13. Date someone older or younger?
I’m getting married in 4 months. No dating for me.


14. One place you wish you could travel right now?
Um…I’d just like to go to sleep.

15. Do you use umbrellas?
Ella, ella, ella…..yes.

16. Do you know all the words to the Canadian national anthem?
Do I live in Canada? That would be a no.

17. Favorite cheese?
I love cheese. Cheese does not love me back.

18. The Smiths or The Cure?
The Cure. Morrissey must die.

The Cure


19. Do you prefer blondes or brunettes?
Don’t care.

20. Best job you ever had?
It’s a tie between Promotions Director at WHTG 106.3 and Production Manager at Healthspring Communications. They were both awesome for different reasons.

21. Did you go to your high school prom?
I did.

And here's the proof.

22. Perfect time to wake up?
When I wake up.

23. Perfect time to go to bed?
When I’m tired.

24. Do you use your queen right away in chess?
Sometimes.

25. Ever been in a car accident?
I stopped counting.

26. Closer to mom or dad…or neither?
Mom.

27. What age is this exciting life over for you?
Are you telling me to plan my own death?

28. What decade during the 20th century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
Oh I would have LOVED to have been a teenager in the late 60′s, early 70′s.


29. Favorite shoes you have EVER owned?
That’s like asking me to choose a favorite child. If I had children. Which I don’t. But you get the point.

30. Do you have an article of clothing you have had since you were in high school?
I’m sure I do somewhere.

31. Were you in track and field?
No, I was in parking lot with cigarettes.

32. Were you ever in a school talent show?
No. But in 7th grade 2 friends and I performed a dance routine to Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go.” True story.



33. Have you ever written in a library book?
I don’t think so. Why would I?

34. Allergic to?
Lactose, apparently.

35. Favorite fruit?
Bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S.

36. Have you watched American Horror Story?
Love it!




37. Baseball hat or toque?
What? 


38. Do you shampoo or soap up first in the shower?
Shampoo.


39. Wet the toothbrush or brush dry with the toothpaste?
Wet the toothbrush. I actually get irritated when I forget to wet it. 


40. Pen or pencil?
I use pens for everything, really. This is a stupid question. 


41. Have you ever gambled at a casino?
Don’t you mean “have you ever made a donation to a casino?”


Here are Josh and I donating to a casino in A.C.


42. Have you thrown up on a plane?
Nope.


43. Have you thrown up in a car?
I had wicked motion sickness as a kid. I think it stopped somewhere around age 14.


44. Have you thrown up at work?
I did, once or twice, when I was super sick.


45. Do you scream on roller coasters?
Depends on the roller coaster.


46. How many shoes do you have?
I’m guesstimating somewhere around 40? I’m kind of a shoe whore.


When I look at this picture, I think "why don't I own all of these?"


47. Who was your first roommate?
Technically my sister when we shared a room as kids.


48. What alcoholic beverage did you drink when you got drunk for the first time?
Absolut Vodka. I remember the experience far too vividly.


49. What was your first job?
Optometric Technician. Yes, really.


50. What was your first car?
1980 Chevy Citation. It was my mom’s and she gave it to me after she got a newer car. It really wasn’t a bad little car. It died when some asshole t-boned me at a 4-way intersection with no stop signs or lights. Poor car.


Yep, this is pretty much what it looked like.


51. When did you go to your first funeral?
Sometime in my early 20s, I think.


52. How old were you when you first moved away from your hometown?
Like 28?


53. Who was your first grade teacher?
I just sat here for like 20 minutes trying to remember. Can’t do it.


54. Where did you go on your first airplane ride?
Florida.


55. When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?
Either my boyfriend at the time or my best friend at the time. Or both.


56. Who was your first best friend and are you still friends with them?
My mother tells me my first best friend was some boy in kindergarten whose name I can no longer recall, so no, I’m not still friends with him. My first real best friend was, and still is, my sister. 


My sister and I, early 80s. I'm the one with the white knee socks.


57. Where did you live the first time you moved out of your parents’ house?
New Brunswick. 


58. Who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?
Usually I call no one and I go into hermit mode.


59. Whose wedding were you in the first time you were a bridesmaid or a groomsmen?
My mom’s.


60. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Wish it was not the morning.


61. What was the first concert you attended?
Def Leppard. With Ugly Kid Joe opening. At what was then called the Garden State Arts Center. 


62. First tattoo or piercing?
First tattoo was a winged unicorn on my left calf. I went in thinking I’d get a tiny little butterfly. Not so much. Every piece I’ve gotten since then has been even bigger.


That winged unicorn was my first tattoo.


63. First celebrity crush?
Jack Tripper, and then Hawkeye Pierce. Yes, the characters themselves, not the actors (John Ritter and Alan Alda).