Friday, November 28, 2008

Cooking Wonders

Thanksgiving is over…and everyone wobbled home fat and happy…which is more than I can say for Mr. Tom Turkey. I actually love Thanksgiving…lots of family….lots of food and more food. I wouldn’t consider myself a gourmet cook…but I can manage Thanksgiving…and I always find ways to entertain myself in the kitchen.

I learned that peeling 10 lbs of potatoes can be very relaxing. The day before Thanksgiving I stood at the kitchen sink peeling away…deep in thought…about the next day’s events...and the poor turkey who gave his life. Before I knew it, I realized my potato was taking shape…taking on human form. I took a closer look at it and thought I saw a face just wanting to bust out of the spud. Now I know what Michelangelo felt like…seeing David emerge from the plaster.

So I kept whittling away…and then I saw it. My potato had Abraham Lincoln’s face. I knew I recognized that long face …longing to be freed. But then again, maybe the potato resembled a serious Obama. Another potato to whittle…next up… Bill Clinton.

After carving a series of presidential potato heads…I moved to making cranberry brie. The cranberry topping calls for small amounts of many different spices. An eighth to be exact of allspice, cloves, nutmeg, and dry mustard. As I was adding the spices…I wondered what dry mustard smelled like. Was dry mustard like its cousin…wet mustard? So I put the eighth of a teaspoon of dry mustard up to my nose for a little smell test. With one breath in, I ended up snorting an eighth. I’m still not sure what dry mustard smells like. But I do know…it burns the inside of your nose.

So if you wonder what I am doing in the kitchen the day before Thanksgiving…I am snorting spices and whittling president heads out of baking potatoes.

Who said cooking wasn’t fun?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

I think I should keep this blog short…short on words. Especially when it is Thanksgiving Day morning and I am expecting 21 relatives for dinner. Yep, today is the perfect day for me to cook up something fast for my blog…kinda like a quick bread…not the long rising old fashioned yummy bread.

Besides I want my blog readers to not be stuffed…so full of Kat. I want them to still have a ravenous appetite for more. We want more…We want more… We want more…

Plus it would be really sad if everyone arrived and found nothing prepared…no table set...no turkey roasted…and found Aunt Kat at the computer…blogging away. Stick a fork in her already and call her cooked.

So I want to offer my Thanks to you for giving your attention to my blog…when I’m sure most times you want to cry fowl. Other than much gratitude…I really have nothing to offer my blog readers…which is better than nothing to offer my guests.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Blogger Insurance

I realize you can insure just about anything. There’s insurance for homes, cars, businesses and not to mention…body parts. Mariah Carey actually had her legs insured for a $1,000,000,000. That’s a billion dollars folks…I know I had to count the zeros to believe it. I would love to see Mariah’s leg policy…and what they are insured for. Maybe her gams are insured against ….people like the whackos associated to Tanya Harding. Maybe Madonna will want to knock her down a peg (leg) or two. Or maybe a broken leg from falling or getting pushed off a stage. But I mostly wonder about cuts when she shaves her legs….or any ingrown hairs.

I wonder what my legs could be insured for…probably $2.50 for the pair…tops. I’m thinking of looking into some insurance for my most admired body part…my fingers…very valuable tool for bloggers. One accidental slice with my chain saw…and my blogging career is over.

Fortunately now bloggers everywhere can breathe a sigh of relief...the world has invented blogger insurance. Bloggers can be protected from charges brought against them for defamation and invasion of privacy. So now some disgruntled person that was mentioned in a blog can’t come back with a vengeance. It seems the number of lawsuits against bloggers have increased from 4 to 89 over the last ten years. But that didn’t seem like a crazy number considering the millions of crazy bloggers out there. Percentage wise…crazy lawsuits to crazy bloggers…not so bad.

I thought blogger insurance was an interesting concept and I appreciated that my good friend, Mickster passed the information along to me…until I remembered he’s an attorney and his wife is linnyj. Yikes.

After that realization…I quickly scoured through the past 270 blogs I’ve written. I combed through them word-by-word looking for any references to linnyj…wondering if I said anything about her that could be used in a court of law against me. I can see it now…my blogging career blowing up in my face…Boom…because of something I said about linnyj. Let’s see…there was that time I razzed her about the 5K race, Camp Linnyj…oh, and about Cancun. But I am making her famous….so there is an upside to being slandered in the Kat blog.

Now I’m thinking…I better get a policy to cover my ass….again, with the body parts insurance. Mariah has her legs and I have my ass……..to take care of.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Book Club Slacker Reform Thyself

I have a confession to make: I have been a book club slacker. For the many years that we have had the club, I have read every single book, but the last two months…I admit, I fell off the page.

It’s not like I didn’t read the book because I was protesting, or because I had better things to do, but hmmmm…why? Maybe I wanted to see what life was like on the slacker side. I’m just such a rules person…maybe I wanted to feel what it is like to wing it….Booyah.

So the past two months I have gone to the book club dinner…with the intention of…faking it when it came to discussion of the book. I figured I’d just bluff my way through. Besides, I figured who would notice? After all, we give the book as much attention as a gnit or is that a gnat.

So Marilin began a very engaging discussion about the book. Seeing I had nothing intelligent to add to the conversation…I just nodded in agreement with her. Then she made the comment: "Did you see how the author never uses the girl’s name?" So with zippo clue to what she was talking about, I just repeated…"Yes...the author never uses the girl’s name." Two minutes were up…book discussion over. I’ll have another chardonnay…thank you very much.

So I figured out the trick to covering up slacking. All you have to do is ‘nod and then repeat’. It’s so easy…I’m sure there wasn’t a book club soul at the table who didn’t know I was slacking.

After I came to this slacker realization…I looked around the table. Hmmm…my friend over there. What is she contributing to the conversation? I see she’s smiling and listening. Wait, she is nodding …we are both nodding. Oh, and now she is repeating…we are both repeating. Ah ha…I might not have read the book…but I totally read her…she’s a book club slacker too.

Nod and repeat…after me.

I can’t continue to lead the life of a book club slacker...with no book spine. I will fry in book club hell.

Book club slacker, reform thyself…

Monday, November 24, 2008

Kid Influence

You know the saying “kids keep you young.” Question: “Why the heck all the gray hair?”

Maybe at some level, kids do keep you young. When I think about it…I know lots of cool stuff because of our kids. Like I knew about this 'Twilight' phenomenon waaaaaaaay before it was main stream. Wishy had read the books so I was clued in. (Boy, am I kicking myself that I didn’t come up with a teenage vampire book.) And she also introduced me to the new Taylor Swift CD (boy, am I kicking myself that I wasn’t 35 years younger and had talent.) Yep…my kids have instructed me in downloads, uploads, and not to mention…numerous loads of laundry.

Colinboy does his part to keep us hip to all the latest bands and music…and also the latest slang. I am so down with the lingo…Peace Out girl scout.

And Chelsea keeps us abreast of the fashion trends…which is an interesting word choice…as that is what is seen in fashion magazines these days.

So if we didn’t have our kids to keep us young, dear PaulA and I would be a couple of turnips on a log…couple of bumps on a truck…or is that the other way around? I could just picture….........The Life of PaulA and Kat:

PaulA walks in the door at the end of the day…and I pull myself away from watching Alex Trebek. PaulA would say, “How was your day Kat? And I would say, “just fine Ward, I mean PaulA.” We would play Paul Anka on our CD player while we sat at the dining room table and ate our meatloaf. After dinner, I would show him the colorful toe socks I bought myself at the TajMaMall…and the gray cable wool vest with the extra deep pockets for his new handkerchiefs that I got for him.

But instead we have been influenced by our 3 musketeers…Big C, Colinboy and Wishy and…so the Life of PaulA and Kat is a little different:

PaulA walks in the door at the end of the day…and I pull myself away from blogging… “Hey PaulA, Waz up dude?” “NMU, Kat?” We decide to download the new Dear Havanah song recently released by Veggie Co. Records to our iPod. Then upload pics from our digital camera to our computer to be printed out at Walgreens, and catch up on a Grey’s Anatomy on the DVR later in the evening. But then we might call some peeps over and chill, or play rock band on the Xbox. Or stay in and have a little sushi at the coffee table. I show PaulA the new Sevens jeans I bought myself online and the Tommy Bahama shirt that I got for him.

So…Big C, Colinboy and Wishy …have saved us from Paul Anka, toe socks, Alex Trebek, handkerchiefs, and meatloaf…although I could easily be convinced in all of the above.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Saggers Beware

I don't talk politics...mainly because I'm not a talking head...but I admit it…I didn’t vote for Barack Obama. I do appreciate his intellect, captivating speeches and his winning smile, but not his share the wealth ideology. I do believe in sharing though…it’s the kind-hearted thing to do and I was taught this in kindergarten (Isn’t that a book?…All I Really Need to Know I learned in Kindergarten) However, I think regular Joe Six-Pack spreads the wealth around just by using his hard earned income to buy things, in effect, stimulating the economy. I do believe in helping folks out…but I also believe in getting out there and working hard for the American Dream. Wait, oh that’s right…I’m not working…thanks, for reminding me…but I tell my kids to do this.

Moving ahead further with my diatribe…onto the lighter side of politics. If I had heard Obama make the following comment about saggers during his campaign for President…he would have had me at "Change." I just might have jumped on the Obama Express.

Obama’s comment: "Here is my attitude: I think people passing a law against people wearing sagging pants is a waste of time. We should be focused on creating jobs, improving our schools, health care, dealing with the war in Iraq , and anybody, any public official, that is worrying about sagging pants probably needs to spend some time focusing on real problems out there. Having said that, brothers should pull up their pants. You are walking by your mother, your grandmother, your underwear is showing. What's wrong with that? Come on. There are some issues that we face, that you don't have to pass a law, but that doesn't mean folks can't have some sense and some respect for other people and, you know, some people might not want to see your underwear -- I'm one of them."

This was a direct quote from Obama and I applaud him. G.Q. Public does not like to see underwear exposed…and I’m not just talking about the elastic band of boxers. I’m talking about pants that are only pulled up to around the butt or below the butt…not even close to the hips. It just looks silly…not to mention that saggy pants make legs look 12 inches tall. I realize that not all brothers sag. My bro doesn’t…so Obama would approve of Steverino.

It is interesting that you never see a woman wearing saggy pants. What woman wants her legs to look a foot long? Women are just smart like that.

So Saggers beware…pull your pants up. Otherwise, Obama is gonna be on your ass.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Name Change

Did you hear Beyonce changed her name for her new album that dropped this month? I guess Beyonce was just too…ho hum…run of the mill. Karen, Kathy, Linda, Beyonce, Nancy, Mary. See how her name just runs together with all the other common names. It doesn’t have a chance of standing out and getting noticed. There are other Beyonces in the world….I understand why she wouldn’t want to be confused with the other 2. Why not change your name to Sasha Fierce?

Well lots of reasons…it is a stupid name. I like Sasha as a first name…but Fierce is an adjective not a last name. I guess it sounds better than Sasha Savage…which sounds like a sausage link when you say it out loud.

Remember when Prince changed his name…to a symbol? Now that was creative. His symbol is unpronounceable…it can only be written. So he is referred to as: The Artist formerly known as Prince. I’m wondering what people call him in person…to his face? “Hey….Symbol.” “Hey…Artist.” Maybe they just pass him a note with his symbol on it. That is so damn cool….a name you can’t pronounce.

Why didn’t I think of having a symbol for a name….especially when the kids were little. “Family meeting…I’m officially changing my name. Mom is not my name anymore. Never refer to me as Mom again as I will not answer. If you need me…you’ll have to write my symbol down and pass it to me”….(but just try to catch me.)

Prince and Beyonce were actually born with cool names, so I’m not sure why they felt the need to change them. It’s people stuck with common names like Kathy that have to reinvent themselves…

Hmmmm…Why don’t I choose a new name? Maybe I should change my name with each season…Autumn in fall…Crystal in winter…Sultry in summer….and May Flowers in spring. Or best yet….

Stick with my favorite: Blogger Extraordinaire

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Positioning Statement

I walked by Duncandog and saw his lazy ass sleeping on the kitchen rug…again. And I wondered what it was like to sleep all day. Don’t get me wrong…Duncan is up for just about anything when he hears the magic word. Just whisper… “Walk” and he’s standing on all fours…sprung from a dead sleep.

But most hours of the day he is in some sleeping position. You can figure out the time of day and time of year by his positions. During the morning he likes to lie on the kitchen table rug in the sun. During a winter morning it’s the kitchen sink rug near the heat vent…turn the heat up already. He moves from spot to spot all day long.

There are some positions that are so cute you want to wake him up and tell him. There’s the diver look with just his two paws out front. Then there is the fetal doggy position…into a small ball…again, turn the heat up already. My personal favorite is the four-legged dead dog look….flopped on his side…4 paws out. Like he just passed out. Duncandog are you alive? Gets me every time.

I don’t know how he can lie around all day and sleep…and then sleep all night. Maybe he isn’t really sleeping when I think he is. Maybe he is lying there awake with one eye open and he’s really watching me and wondering……how does Kat can sit in front of a computer day after day and blog?

Maybe he can tell a lot from my blogging positions. Elbows up at the keyboard…I am all jacked from caffeine and in full blogger mode. Elbows down at the keyboard…I am a slow ass and no thoughts are coming. Duncandog’s personal favorite is the two-legged dead blogger look. Kat’s eyes are glossy…fingers haven’t moved in minutes. Like she just passed out. Katdog are you alive?

Just whisper… “Sale” and Kat is standing on all two’s…sprung from a blogging trance. Gets Duncan every time.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mechanicals Attachment

Saying goodbye to your cell phone is like saying goodbye to a friend…at least for me. I know being attached to a mechanical device sounds a little bit weird. But when did I say I was normal?

My attachment to mechanicals started when I was a kid. I became attached to the old family station wagon…the place I sat, behind my dad…looking at the back of his head and watching the road behind him…at times seeming scary. Could I ever drive a car? And seeing my mom’s profile as she rode shotgun. I always had to kiss our cars goodbye…which didn’t happen too often because we rarely got a new one. It always felt like saying goodbye to a family member.

So this mechanical attachment continued with me as I got older…with our leased cars. When I have to say goodbye to a car, I think about the 3 or 4 years that have passed and how the kids have grown. Wishy in the car seat…Colinboy flailing around in the back when he should have been in his seat belt…and Chelsea kicking the back of my seat. Such fond memories.

Lucky for me, I won’t be saying goodbye to the car I have now for 2 more years. But yesterday by dear cell phone stopped working. It just plum had enough…the battery door wouldn’t stay closed. So I had to replace my dear friend. It was so hard to say goodbye. After all, I had the phone for 4 years. The kids don’t seem to have mechanicals attachment…they all have had double (or triple) phones since my dear celly.

So I laid my phone to rest in my bureau drawer…and gave it some final words:

Goodbye my dearest cell phone…
I will miss the sound of your ringtone…the feel of your buttons…the cute sounds you make when you turn off and on…..your simple uncomplicated nature. You will be dearly missed.

Hello…hello….Enough of the crap, Kat…

Monday, November 17, 2008

Runs on Guns

The title of this blog might have you thinking Doctor Suess…like Hop on Pop. But this is waaaay more intelligent than that. (Although there is nothing like a good rhyming book.) Nope. This is about the effect the new administration is already having on the economy before Obama even gets into office.

Even with the economy in the toilet with the housing market crisis, credit crunch, 2 wars, loss of jobs, etc. etc.…there is a bright side to our bowl of problems. There is actually one area where increases are occurring at a fast rate….and believe me, it isn’t my blog readership.

Gun retailers countrywide are seeing an increase in gun sales…especially military guns and assault weapons. Sales are shooting through the roof because people are thinking that gun control will be a top priority for the new administration. (Obama just doesn’t like guns as much as the gun toting Sarah Palin.) So people are running out to purchase their Uzi. Shouldn’t we all be entitled to a military style gun? Or maybe even a Saturday-night special. You never know when an assault weapon could come in handy. After all, the burbs are becoming more and more dangerous these days.

I don’t frequent gun shops…so I was surprised to hear about the runs on guns. I am familiar with, however, the guns at Wal-mart. Their gun area was one part of the store that I would walk around when my kids were little…no short cuts through the Gun Dept. Heck I knew…one look at the shoot ‘em up Dept. and Colinboy would be asking for one. I prefer to think of him toting his bass guitar around town instead of a shotgun.

But it only takes one kid to trigger the subject with other kids. Colinboy had cousins who owned bb guns...4 brothers. So he talked PaulA into one. The manly men shot targets in the woods, until the thing jammed...and then we deep-sixed it. Stick with the bass guitar son.

So Annie Get your Gun….or Andrew Get Your Gun…at Wal-mart…before Obama shoots down any hopes of you getting guns during his administration. I actually approve of gun control...cuz the only thing I’m gunnin for is…more people to read my blogs.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The WE in US

If you were to overhear a conversation between parents, you would inevitably hear someone say “we” when referring to their child…with phrases such as: ‘we applied to college’ or ‘we have a game today.’ So you may wonder…Is the parent applying to Boston College? Does the parent play soccer too? What’s the “we” thing? They are talking about just their child, right? But then again, are they really?

The fact is…we so fiercely love our children and are so invested in them that we can’t help think…WE. WE are a package deal. It began when WE first laid eyes on our kids…at that moment WE were in this thing called ‘life’…together and forever.

WE want and feel for our children. WE are out there on the playground trying to make new friends. WE are hurting when someone makes fun of US. We are elated when making the team. WE are stressed over final exams. WE are beaming in the high school prom picture. WE are sad after learning the hard way. WE are jumping for joy over an ‘A’ in Chemistry. WE are nervous for the upcoming interview. WE are rooting, hoping, laughing, fearing, crying, and praying for our children.

So right now…WE (Sweet Wishy, PaulA and I) are getting those applications out to colleges…and in a few short months…WE will hear where WE are going to school next fall. And then WE will moving into the dorm. And then WE will be graduating from college. And then WE will be looking for a job. And then WE….

It will always be ‘WE.’ There will always be ‘WE’ in US.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

So Easy Even a Kat Can Do It

Last month we visited Sistersledge and Daryl to the third power’s house and had a cup of coffee made from their machine…the Keurig. Have you heard of this machine? It makes coffee one cup at a time…in 10 seconds, although it seemed like it took a whole 15. The thing uses little “pods” of coffee that are premeasured. You just pour water in the machine (no measuring), put the pod in, pull the handle down and it fills your coffee mug with piping HOT coffee.

I have to say, the coffee is pretty darn good. I am not trying to put Dunkin Donuts out of business…because that place is near and dear to my heart. And I’m sure the people at the DD drive-thru window are wondering where their favorite Kat is…but every 5 or 6 years you need to take a break from routine…mix it up…..go crazy and try something a little different. So we bought a Keurig of our own.

The cool thing about the individual pods is that you can choose what coffee you want…depending on your mood. If you are feeling French piggish…there’s always French Roast. If you are feeling south of the borderish…there’s Columbian. Don’t want to be too wired and chatty Kathy?….Decaf. And if you are feeling like a constipated Queen Elizabeth…hot tea is a nice option. One cup at a time…your choice.

Of course, the coffee is only as good as your water. Our tap water seems to be fine...not exactly a fine blend from the Poland Springs of Maine…but definitely not the muddy Mississippi. I like that you don’t have to measure out the water for the Keurig. I never could see the LINE for the water on the other coffee makers. Holding the carafe up to the light…I’m always pouring water in and out, like a chemistry experiment before I get it right. And not having to measure the coffee prevents…too watery…too strong. Aaahhhhhhhhh.

So now I stumble downstairs to the kitchen with hair disheveled, mascara smudged, tattered nightgown and socks. I don’t get in the car and scare the world (I save that for PaulA). I just pick my pod (boy that sounds nasty) and Press a button….10 to15 seconds later…piping HOT java.

It’s so easy…even a Kat can do it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Jerry Bring Back

This is a “Bring Back” Blog in honor of my Father on his 77th Birthday. Last year I wrote this blog for his Birthday. As you will see when you read further…the “Bring Back” Blog is perfect for Jerry. Happy Double 7’s, Dad!

Happy Birthday Father!
You are 76 today and you have a lot of fans out there thinking of you and wishing you a Happy Birthday. I know you like to call us “sports fans”…but we are really YOUR fans….call us “Jerry fans!”

I just have to tell the world about my amazing father on his 76th birthday and what better place to do it! First of all, Gerald is a trivia buff. Okay maybe knowing the square mileage of Jacksonville, Florida could come in handy someday….especially if you were going to walk it. He can also give you directions to anywhere from nowhere. He knows that Interstate 70 intersects with Interstate 71 in Columbus, Ohio … I don’t know how he knows this stuff, maybe he was born with a GPS chip inside of him. And he also knows everything about sports. I mean everything…obscure facts about teams, players and coaches....and not just professional sports…even high school sports….go ahead, quiz him. Gerald is the friendliest guy you ever want to meet and the most easy going…that’s G.L. He should have run for mayor because he can hold court wherever he goes. He can strike up a conversation with just anyone….and believe me he has.

You should have seen Gerald when he wore his Air Force Blues. Maybe I am a little biased, but I thought he was the most handsome dad ever. And at age 76, he’s the cutest dad out there. Yep, when it comes to the cuteness factor, he’s got it… hands down. The dog tags given to me when my dad was in the Air Force are my most prize possession. And on Veteran’s Day I wear them proudly… proud that they say, “Kathy-Anne T.… Daughter of Gerald T…

Gerald has also earned the nickname as Jerry Bring Back. When my mother buys something and later decides she doesn’t want it…she gives it to my dad. Okay, who is going to give a 76 year old man a hard time about bringing back curtains. Remember, I just said he has the cuteness factor going for him, and what is he doing with swags and jabots, anyway?

One of my father’s famous lines growing up was, “Who loves Dad? Raise your hand.” We could be doing our homework, washing the dishes, or watching television and he would say it, “Who loves Dad? Raise your hand.”… automatically we would each raise our hand into the air and keep on doing what we were doing. Do you think we were going to deny my dad his fun?!

I remember when my mom didn’t feel like cooking and we were lucky to get dinner at McDonalds. My father and I had the special job of picking it up. I would get a pad of paper, write down everyone’s order, and then jump in the ole Tempest next to him. I can still hear that car today…sounded just like my washing machine. Off we would go to Mickey D’s, my dad and I on a burger mission…swoosh, cchuck, swoosh, ccchuck. I remember hoping that mom didn’t feel like cooking the next week …..burgers and time with dad….it was the best.

So Happy Birthday, Father. You are dearly loved by me and everyone who knows you. I could write more about how great you are, but I am having a hard time typing with just one hand. You see, my other hand is raised….. high in the air....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Cold Patient

I just got over a nasty cold. The reason I knew it was nasty…other than the lack of energy, stuffy head, sore throat, nasal drip and coughing jags…PaulA and Sweet Wishy were staying clear of me. I am not a baby when it comes to colds, although I do whimper now and then…and sometimes I roll around in my bed and moan. I never take cold medication, not because I am a freak like Tom Cruise and not believe in meds…but I don’t think anything really helps except massive sleep. Everyone has their own way of handling a cold…and we are all a little different.

When PaulA gets a cold…he soldiers on. He doesn’t let it stop him. He gets up and goes to work. He marches on…through the daily trenches of life. (So dramatic.)

When Colinboy gets a cold…he has to first make sure it is a cold…and not a rare disease from South Africa. He goes online to WebMD, researches his symptoms to rule out diseases such as necrotizing fasciitis…that nasty flesh-eating disease. He makes sure he is going to live another day.

When Chelsea gets a cold…she deals with it…as long as there something she can take. She wants it over and over now. A trip to CVS, down the cold remedies aisle, and she is set to go…with a med for every symptom.

When Bri gets a cold…she never says a word about…let alone complain. She can have something wrong with her and I’m the last to know. Turns out last spring she had Mono and was walking around with a swollen neck gland for 10 days before she decided to show me the tree trunk she had for a neck.

Yes, the 5 of us are all different…but if you take the good parts of how we each handle a cold and combine them…we are:

The perfect cold patient: Someone who…doesn’t complain to anyone…and after ruling out Ebola disease from the Sudan …and taking massive meds…soldiers on through their day…and gets to bed early.

Together we are the perfect cold patient.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hat Please

I picked Duncandog up from the groomer after his haircut and I hardly recognized him. He was more shaven than cut. I wonder if Duncan wanted to cry. If he did…I would totally understand. I’ve been there….women everywhere have been there…the bad haircut.

Once years ago when I was shopping at the Taj MaMall with my sister, Jayniebug…We entered a hair salon…which was really a butcher shop with a fancy fa├žade. On a whim I decided to get a hair cut. Not exactly sure why I would do this…I have to blame someone…so I’ll blame Jayniebug …

Anyway, the salonSLASHbutchershop could take me right away. That should have been a red flag right there. So I sat down in the chair and my sister sat next to me in the open chair …hello, a second red flag. Edward Scissorshands (third flag) pulled out her hedge clippers, and started to work. With one cut, massive amounts of my hair fell to the floor. I couldn’t really see what was happening because she was working on the back…and I don’t have eyes in the back of my head…although my kids were always sure I did.

I knew I was in trouble by watching my sister. I could see her face in the mirror as she watched the woman slowly butcher me. With each cut, Jayniebug winced a little more…and then a little more. She didn’t want to be impolite to the hairdresserSLASHER butcher…but yelling “STOP the madness” would have been a good idea. Instead she just made faces. After 10 minutes…I could hardly recognize my own sister. Her face was so contorted…she looked like W. C. fields smelling dirty gym socks.

The woman could tell by the tears streaming down my face that I was less than happy with the hack job she had just performed on my head…so she charged me less. I tried to be adult about it. So I got up from the chair…threw the money on the floor and stomped out of there. Okay, I didn’t do that, but that is what I wanted to do.

Instead, I went home…cried some more…and put on a hat. I am not a hat person, but I quickly became Kat in the Hat. At least I had the option of wearing one…poor Duncandog wasn’t as fortunate.

Friday, November 7, 2008

PackKat

Are you a pack rat? I wouldn’t say I was...maybe a packKat. I don’t hoard hair balls or anything, but I do find it hard to get rid of things, especially the kid’s things. So consequentially we have their old crib, cradle, clothes, toys…all a pale yellow and neatly stored in our basement. Okay, I lied. There are those worse than me. Oprah had a woman on her show who couldn’t stop buying stuff…she could hardly move around her house. At least I contain my mess to my basement.

The entrance to my storage side of the basement should come with a warning: “Danger. Do not go in there.” When I do decide to clean it out…I always start with good intentions. “Today, I am throwing all this shit away.” Then I pick one thing up …. “Awww. I remember when Colinboy puked on this…his first puke.” I never get anywhere. I even have some of the groovy clothes I wore in high school and college.

There is an upside to all this. This packKat stuff comes in handy. When Bri has to dress in some crazy outfit for lacrosse team spirit…and needs to be a cowgirl...got her covered. Needs to be hippie…got her covered. Needs to be a bridesmaid…she’s covered 5 times over. And when Colinboy needed stuff for his apartment…he got great deals in Kat’s Basement...Come on down!

I know I should have a tag sale, rummage sale, selling crap sale…or whatever you want to call it sale…but I just can’t stomach pulling that stuff out of my basement, setting it up, figuring out a price, haggling with cheap sons-of-guns, slashing the price, barely making a hundred dollars and then hauling the crap back to the basement or dump.

Light bulb moment: I think I’ll bring everyone to me…have a sale where everyone goes into my basement. I’ll let them go downstairs, paw through my crap, I mean my valuables…and let them haul it out of there themselves. Besides I think I might even make more money. People always feel like they are getting a deal when they have to go through piles, bins, and shelves …and fight each other off for stuff. It would be like a T.J. Maxx...ala Kat.

Yea…that’s what I’ll call it…T.J. Katt. And my slogan: “You get the MOSTEST from the LEASTEST at T.J. Katt.” Sing it with me, folks.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Some Guidance

I can’t imagine working in the Guidance Office right now...a bustling hub of activity with high school seniors applying to college. I only have one kid I’m trying to make sure gets into school…I can’t imagine 250.

The Guidance Office does a great job of keeping everything organized and answering questions from students and parents. And they don’t go GUIDANCE on you. (That’s like going POSTAL, but at the Guidance Office.) I could never work there…I would go GUIDANCE at least once a day. The whole college application process is so stressful, that it puts students and parents in a state of panic.

Students are applying to numerous schools because colleges make them feel that if you aren’t the ‘best slice in the loaf of life’…you won’t get in. So students second guess themselves: What if I don’t get in to XYZ College? Gee, I always thought I was a good student. (But you did get that B minus in Spanish class...Remember, you (accidently) said a swear word in Espanol. Who knew?)

So what do you do? You apply to numerous schools….JUST IN CASE! You look for schools you deem as your safety school, your reach school, your reach school that is a safety-reach, your safety school that is a reach-safety……it just keeps going and going.

Before you know it you’ve applied to 15-20 schools, your family is out-of-pocket 1200 dollars, and you still think you aren’t getting in anywhere. (Maybe there’s a good safety school in Idaho…with a safely reachable altitude.)

Then you try to come up with some strategy to the application process. Do I apply Early Decision, Early Action, or Regular Decision? Early Decision is binding, so it hurts…and Early Action is loose…I mean, non-binding so it doesn’t hurt as much. It seems students aren’t going for the Regular anymore…probably because of the name…it’s just so plain. If they called the Regular Action…Prize Action…students would be all over it.

Then there is standardized testing strategy. The SAT or the ACT…which do I take? Which initials look better? Do I send my scores? Or do I hide my scores under my mashed potatoes? Should I take the tests four times or will I look too desperate? Or do I look for a school that is a kinder, gentler school not requiring standardized tests? (Maybe a school in Idaho that doesn’t believe in stamping numbers on students…only their cattle.)

After the Nov. 1st Early Action date passes…there is a lull. A very short lull when the Guidance Office can catch a breath…until kids start to hear from colleges. Then the stress returns. It turns out the college in Idaho that was supposed to be a safety school within a safety-reach, was actually a safety school within a reach-safety…and although the SATs were not required, they required better grades in Spanish….and the application should have gone binding Early Decision instead of loose Early Action.…..Ahhhhhhhhh. What happens now?

Here’s some guidance: Go ahead and call the Guidance Office. Just remember they have 249 other kids to guide through the college application process…so don’t go GUIDANCE on them.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes We Can

Barack Obama-The First African-American President of the United States of America.
Congratulations to Barack Obama and to our country! Regardless of your political stance, whether you paint your face red or blue, or whether you feel you are gonna get taxed up the ying yang…I don’t think there is anyone out there that doesn’t feel the historical significance of the result of this Presidential election.

The country spoke…in fact, it appears they shouted. “Yes we can.” AND “Yes we did.”
Personally, I can’t imagine why Obama or McCain would want the job of President. Except for maybe the cool digs, personal jet, extensive travel with first class accomodations, yummy food, access to rock stars and Hollywood types and POWER…POWER…POWER.

This Presidential election was to be an election of Firsts…regardless of who won. First Mavericky Oldest White Guy. First Woman Gun Toting Moose Hunting Vice President. First Dude. In the end, Americans decided that…First African-American President...had a better ring.

With Election 2008…we showed we are not a white, black, Latino or Asian America, but a United States of America. We are a great land of opportunity...where all things are possible. Doors have been opened: We can look forward to four years from now…Say it with me folks….Kat – The First Blogger President of the United States of America…2012. Yes we can.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Just VOTE

Who ya voting for? Come on, you can tell me. I won’t tell anyone.

What? Not gonna share? Some people are very private about their voting. They feel it is their own business and don’t feel the need to share…or make their politics someone else’s. Papa Joe was this way. He always said his vote was private…his own business. He wouldn’t even tell Nana. (Let alone put it in a blog for all to see.)

I ,too, follow Papa Joe’s thought on keeping my vote private. I don’t feel the need to share either. Although I will share that I enjoyed being Sarah Palin for a night…Halloween night. (And PaulA made a cute Joe the Plumber.) But I am not gonna spill the beans in this blog about who I am voting for. I would never want to influence your decision and make you doubt your own choice. I realize the enormous impact Kat-Blogger Extraordinaire has on blogworld…especially with the limitless numbers of readers following every word. I wouldn’t want to be responsible for interfering in American politics.

I will keep this blog short today…this beautiful fall day…because I am leaving soon to do my civic duty and VOTE…and I have a tee time with Pia this morning.

So………‘My friends’, I am off. I am feeling a little ‘mavericky’ so I might ‘change’ the usual route I take to the voting polls, right after I put ‘lipstick on a pig’…...

Whoever you vote for….Just VOTE.

Monday, November 3, 2008

To-do List

I love a To-do List. It keeps me organized, so nothing falls through the cracks. No appointments get missed…no one left at the bus station for 20 minutes…what son? Or left at the kennel another night...what dog?

I’ve got lists…sub-lists, mini-lists and midnite-lists. Many nights I wake at 3:11 am and start forming lists in my head…which keeps me awake for hours…memorizing tasks. Now I keep a pen and paper by my bedside so I can unload all these thoughts…declutter my pea brain…so I can get some sleep. Plus a EUREKA moment for the best blog ever written can come anytime. This blog…proof positive.

The best part of a To-do List is crossing items off. Bri and I are both like this…and I’m sure lots of you are too. We will write something down on our list…even something that we have already done…just so we can cross it off. There is so much satisfaction from crossing it off the List.
My To-do List…
#1. Wake up. (Oh, I’m awake…I can cross that off.)
#2. Drink coffee (last drop gone…cross it off.)
#3. Kick the dog…outside (Score: 20-yard field goal…cross it off.)

Some things on my To-do List get quickly crossed off…but then there are others that stay there for months…and even years.
#23. Make my root canal appointment…on the List for 2 months.
#45. Tell PaulA about the ‘ding’ on my car….on the List for 6 months.
#99. Organize the basement….on the List for 8 years.
#100. Get rid of the dog…on the List for10 years.

I’ve seen those small pocket recorders where you can record your To-do List…which sounds cool…but then you wouldn’t have the satisfaction of crossing it off. Although, I guess you could say… “check” when completed.

To-do List…testing one.....two...
Wake up……check
Drink coffee...check
Kick the dog outside…….check
Write a stupid blog….double check.