The Mile High Club

So the other day I was listening to the radio and they were talking about the Mile High Club...now I don't know about you, but it's something that intrigues me, but I'm apprehensive to make a "moment" out of those tiny, disgusting, airplane bathroom stalls. In fact it makes me dry heave. But according to 95.1 there is a service out of the Charleston Internatioal Airport that allows you to join the Mile High Club with out having to leave your seat.

Enter Club Mile High, now this changes things!



B is home and I can hardly believe it.

Once he was home and settled on the 3rd we made a homemade pizza and watched the Clemson v. FSU game (Go TIGERS!). On the 4th we did some catching up and bought new cell phones, had some Moe's burritos, and Cold Stone ice cream. Basically just hanging out and being in each other's company. The 5th was also full of shopping he bought a pair of Lucky Jeans (I like to say he got "lucky") we also hung out with some pals at Reds Icehouse in Mt. Plesant and had a few beers. Today was yard work day (yuck) and more vegging. All-in-all it's been a very relaxing week, thus far and it's been super nice to be able to see Brandon when I'm talking to him and hold hands with him when we're together. It's those little things that mean so much when he's gone and I'm thrilled to have him back.

So I'm not going to waste anymore time on this blog and go back to being with him. Michelle...out!

August 2007

Weed whacking with a bush trimmer. No, it isn't a new Beck song.

Yesterday, began the "nesting" process for Brandon's return home. The task included weeding the massive amounts of weeds in our backyard (our yard has never had grass and has not yet been landscaped)--I swear some were as big as saplings, the few in our front yard, picking up doggy poo, and trimming the jungle of bushes by our front door.

It was while I was trimming these bushes that I had the brilliant idea of using the electric bush trimmer to manage the ginormous weeds in our backyard, as I never learned (and never really wanted) to use the edger/weed whacker. It worked beautifully or at least, "good enough for government work" (as Brandon always says). It looks like the weed trees never existed. Now both our front yard and back "yard" are ready for mowing today. :oP

The "To-Do" list today, includes, going to Publix, mowing the lawn, dusting and vacuuming...yippee skippy!

August 2007

Every Sunday night is trivia night at our local bowling alley. Amanda, Michelle and I have been going since June and have only won twice. While a win is a win, we were getting so tired of the same groups ALWAYS winning and having an incredible dry spell ourselves. Well, last night was a great trivia night for The Hummingbirds (last night, "team Michelle")! We seriously rocked the house (a little retro action for you, there)!

Each trivia round is comprised of three games consisting of five questions each (so 15 questions per round) and there are two rounds a night. Michelle and I were the only two in our team last night as Amanda was out of town.

The first round, first game (notoriously our bad game) flew by and we knew almost every answer and only had to guess on a couple questions. Our saving grace was a nine point question about the opening of the Brady Bunch (which character was in which spot on the grid--we nailed all of them!). After the game we were in second place of about seven teams, astonished, Michelle and I were determined to keep our ranking. Through the next two games we did really well and at the end of the round we had beaten out the other teams, maintained our second place ranking, and won a $15 gift certificate for the bowling alley (which we usually use on the drinks we drink either that night or the following Sunday).

The second round of questions began and some of the questions were a little harder, but we still were able to come up with correct answers for a good number of them. After the three games we were tied with two other teams for second place and we had to do a sudden death round (one question with 30 seconds to answer). Michelle and I gave it our best shot and were able to beat out one team and walked away with third place (a $10 gift certificate).

So total Michelle and I won $25 in bowling alley money and were tied for the "grand masters" of trivia last night! Needless to say we were beaming and finally able to walk out of the bowling alley lounge, WINNERS!

August 2007

So I thought I'd follow a friend's lead and make a list of my favorite websites. These are the sites I either visit most often, or ones I just like in general:

Gmail: This is where I get all my email. They also have a great chat "machine". I'm able to chat with friends/family while at work even under firewalls...sweet!

Pandora: This is a great free "radio" that plays only the music you like. And it has a "Quick Mix" button that shuffles through all your stations to make a random mix of fab music!! (Thanks Michelle Mc!)

Fodors: Fantastic references for any travel you plan to do or info on your city. I used this site to find places of interest in my fair town of Charleston...very informative.

Martha Stewart: My husband calls her the Femi-Nazi, and while I'm not a fan of her personality; I love her recipes and crafts. I have yet to find one that hasn't worked out. So whatever she is; her company is fantastic.

Myspace: "Does the word duh, mean anything to you?" (Buffy the Vampire Slayer-The Movie)

Good Reads: A fantastic place to catalog all the books you've ever read, plan to read, are reading. There's a link of this on my page as well. If you join look me up we can be book buddies.

Google: I've loved this site since my college days and I love it even more now that I can customize my home page (as I'm a Gmailer). I have quotes machines, health tips, countdowns, and more. And I can change the look of it to fit my mood.

Imdb: A wonderful place to find any and all info on movies, actors, and anything pertaining to both.

Blockbuster: This is where/how I get my movies. I especially love the fact that I can turn in a viewed movie to any store and get another! I'm never with out a movie.

Tripod: This is a free place to make a website. B and I found that it is easier for family and friends to keep up with our lives if we had one place for all of them to see pictures and our blog as we update them.

Well, those are the websites I love. Check them out if you haven't already.

Happy Surfing!

August 2007

I grab the latest issue of skirt! magazine and what do I find, but my name printed under the comments section! Apparently they liked my comment so much that they put it in their August issue ;o)

Do comments count as being published?

July 2007

Of all the things I've been looking forward to least since Brandon has been gone, it is the possibility of having to stain our fence. Well last week, it became apparent that I need to do it (when the HOA told me to get it done lest a fine will be owed). "Fine," I thought, "I'll just hire someone." Easier said than done. So now the task falls to me. But how in the hell do I stain a fence?!

I found this useful website that told me how. PS: if anyone has any other bright ideas, please share them! I'll include a picture in the update.

UPDATE (1 August): It took me a week, but the fence has been stained and looks rather good if I say so myself. A couple friends came over last Saturday to help me finish the back. What a chore! Brandon owes me

July 2007

Last night my friends Emily, Michelle, and I went to the Harry Potter release party. But when I say that we went, we really just hung out until 11:30 and made our way to the store to await our future book buys.

Around 4:00 I showed up at Barnes and Noble to get the wristbands for when we would get the infamous book. At 6:00 (yes I waited 2 hours--and yes I know I'm a dork), the line began to move and luckily I was able to name drop as Michelle Mc. (as I call her) works part-time for B&N and I was able to pick up my wrist band along with Emily's and hers, we were patrons 20-22! Sweet!

Once I had the wristbands in hand Michelle, Emily (both just got off work) and I went to dinner and had a thrilling discussion of Harry Potter to-date. We went over the loose ends, character analysis, and confirmed plots. After an hour of eating and discussion we made our way to a coffee shop so I could finish re-reading Half-Blood Prince and we could discuss more of what we hopped and thought would be in store for Harry and the readers.

A funny side note: while at the coffee shop, Emily needed a little pick-me-up and got a coffee, the Barrista saw her wrist band and asked if the three of us were getting ready to go clubbing. She said no and left it at that! Three good-looking girls were staying up late not to party like rock stars, but to buy a book and read until the wee hours of the morning...how's that for irony!

At exactly 12:05 I was the 20th person to receive my Harry Potter book! I read until 3:00am (my eyes couldn't stay open any longer). And resumed this morning at 8:30...so far there has already be great action scenes, I've cried, and gotten pissed and I'm only on Chapter 13! Can't wait to see what happens next...but don't worry I won't spoil it.

UPDATE (22 July): I finished reading the book and I am thrilled to say that the book was well worth the wait. There were a few slow parts where JKR had to include explanations for certain tasks, etc. I would say I cried (well sobbed actually) through 1/4 of the book and by the time I finished my face and eyes were swollen and looked like a punching bag (minus the bruising). Loved the book but I wish JKR had included more info in the epilogue...Happy reading!

July 2007

Last night, 3 friends and I went to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (in 3D at IMAX). We arrived at the IMAX theater at 8:00 o'clock for a 9:30 showing; it sounds absurd, but thank God we did as the line went out the door by the time the doors to the theater opened and we were ready to be seated.

When we were finally in our seats with our 3D specs in-hand we were instructed that when the green glasses appeared on the screen we were to put on the Paris-Hilton-gone-bad-glasses and when they appeared in red we were to take them off. Easy enough. (see picture)

The movie started sans previews (which I was glad for since we had waited an hour and 15 minutes to get into the theater). I have to say I was very impressed with the movie. I did not expect for the director, David Yates to put everything from the book into the movie as it would have been close to 5 hours long if he had. The special effects were incredible and with each new movie I am amazed at what the FX folks can pull off.

With each new movie I am also impressed at the level of improvement of acting ability for the youngsters. Daniel Radcliff was great to say the least and it is obvious Emma Watson and Rupert Grint have become more comfortable in front of the camera. All the kids did a fantastic job and Imelda Staunton who plays Dolores Umbridge is wickedly wonderful!

As we, along with the full theater, experienced the film, the green glasses appeared at the bottom of the screen. A muffled commotion followed as all of us retrieved our glasses and placed them on our faces. It took a little getting used to them, but when the 3D action began I was glad I had paid a little extra for it. The creatures and the action sequences that followed were incredible by themselves but with the help of the glasses and fine tuning of the film, it came to life. Characters ran towards us, cast spells in our direction and glass fell on us. What a great way to experience this film!

While quite a bit was left out, I feel the integrity of the major plot line was held up and I was very impressed. If you get the chance I highly recommend you see the film, whether in a regular theater or in 3D.

July 2007

I recently returned from visiting my parents' home in Maryland. We spent a lot of time seeing historical and interesting places like Annapolis, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C. And, while all of it was very neat to see I couldn't help but pull a "Michelle".

Those who know me well know that stupid things come out of my mouth at inopportune moments. Typically they never hurt anyone else's feelings but rather get a notable expression or laugh. Needless to say I had one of my moments at the Library of Congress on Saturday.

Led by misinformation my folks and I trekked our way from the Smithsonian (half way up the Mall) to the Library of Congress (behind the State House) to see the Constitution (FYI, it isn't in the Library of Congress). It was a hot, humid day and the sun baked each every skin cell that was exposed on my body. We were puddles by the time we reached the air conditioned lobby of the LoC. On a mission I marched up the front desk and told the man behind it:

me: We're here to see the Constitution
man: Oh wow, well that's in the Hall of Records behind the Smithsonian
me: You're kidding
man: Nope
me: (here's the kicker) Well, what's here?
Man: (dumbfounded look on face) Uhh, (5 second pause) well we have the largest collection of first edition books on display as well as the reading room. Let me get you a map of the building.

OHMYGOD! Could I have been more stupid?! I laughed about my conversation with the (very nice) man the rest of the day. Even now I still snigger. I'm sure he got a good laugh, too.

"What's here" good morning, Michelle.

June 2007

June 12th AKA Peanut Butter Cookie Day (it's true look it up) was my birthday. I wish I could say that my birthday celebrations have matured from the going to bars, getting plastered, and dancing on the bar tops; but as of last Saturday I cannot (well, minus the plastered, thing...I have my limits, you know).

ROUND #1: On June 9th, my bff Anne Marie came down to fair Chucktown to help my other bff, Jen and me to celebrate my birthday. To start we all got dressed up and went to the ballet Swan Lake (don't worry no swan deaths in this one...it was the "Disney" version). We got back to my place and found it muggy and hot. Anyone who has ever lived in the south understands the necessity for a WORKING air conditioner in the summer.

After a phone call put in to Jen's hubby, Anne Marie shimmied, yes shimmied into the attic and after about 15 minutes she was armed with a staple gun and duct tape and began her work. Apparently the ductwork had fallen in an area and caused a kink so the air pressure was really low AND it had come loose from the compressor. Roughly 45 minutes after Anne Marie ascended into the attic, she descended and "poof" the air conditioner was working. Afterwards, we hung out for a few hours to cool off then had an early dinner at the Mustard Seed.

Now that the air conditioner was working properly, we began the process of transforming from good, wholesome girls to naughty women of the night. (Well, now that doesn't sound right...but you know what I mean.) After becoming quaffed, shadowed, and glossed; we were ready for the night life and to meet my other friends Amanda and Michelle. After an amazing parallel parking job (Mr. Driving Instructor would have been proud), we all met up and made our way to Market Street Saloon (think Coyote Ugly) where we bumped/grinded, gyrated, and sang our little hearts out, and danced on the bar top until 1 in the morning. Upon leaving the bar Anne Marie, Jen and I decided we should inform Mike (Jen's bro) how much we missed him and wished he were there with us (apparently we left several VMs and have since started a war...) for some reason pretending to be Carrie Underwood comes to mind...can't understand why?

ROUND #2: On June 12th, my day started like a typical day, accept I didn't have to work, because I asked for it off; how's that for a birthday present to myself! Unfortunately my homeownership duties called and I mowed the lawn. After the bug spray (the mosquitoes here are ginormous) had seeped into every pore sweat had escaped from and grass remnants were firmly embedded on my ankles and arms; I got ready to enjoy the pool with Amanda.

We spent 2 hours lounging by the pool with our Red Stripes and in the pool with our floaty rafts. Once the optimal tan had been achieved we went back to my place, showered and trekked to the "Wives' Social" at the paint-your-own-pottery place (I made a mug).

When the paint had dried on our respective objects d'art, Emily, Michelle, Amanda and I made our way to Oscar's for a wonderful dinner and a birthday canolli accompanied by a restaurant singing me "Happy Birthday". The day was rounded out at; you guessed it, a bar where the four of us and Cristin played a mean game of trivia. We were only 1 point from being tied for 2nd place.

Thanks to everyone for all the birthday wishes, I really appreciate all of you and your friendships!


June 2007

I love books. I have kept almost every book I read for my major in college and (until recently) belonged to a book club. Reading is a great way to pass the time and escape to a world not my own. Depending on the genre, I could experience what it's like to be a vampire, a bounty hunter, an investigator, or see a new side of my own personality.

A friend of mine recently sent me a link to a website to journal all my reads. It's called GoodReads. It's great because I can see what my friends are reading and vice versa and also view their comments or ratings on the various books. If you decide to join, look me up and we can be "goodreads buddies".

Happy Reading!

May 2007

Friday the 25th marked the beginning of the 31st annual Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC. Basically, it's 2 weeks of art; performances (theater, dance, music) and crafts and paintings. For these 2 weeks Chucktown will have culture galore.

Last night I attended with one of my pals, Cristin, one such performance called the Rubberbandance. It was INCREDIBLE! I honestly had no idea what to expect going in to it. The 5 dancers (2 women and 3 men) performed an eclectic dance style that consisted of (just to name a few) Tai Chi, break dancing, ballet, hip hop, yoga, Pilates, and something that looked similar to the Matrix . I have never seen anything like it before and I thoroughly loved it! If they make it to your home city, please go see it. The audience we were in was as eclectic as the dance styles and everyone I passed at the end was awestruck.

It is time well spent!

March 2007

This is going to be short because I'm tired! I completed my first 10k race today, with my hubby. Though my feet are terribly sore and have about 3 blisters on each; I feel a sense of pride. Mind you I did not run the race (I'm not there yet) but we did walk at a pretty good pace about 17-19 min/mile. And although I'm sore and hobbling a bit, I'm definitely doing the Cooper River Bridge Run next year (who knows maybe I'll add a bit of jogging...we'll see).

January 2007

Well, it's the start of 2007, a new year. This always fills me with hope and a little trepidation as I don't know what this year will hold. Will this be a year of accomplished goals? Will this year bring something new to my life? Will I loose anymore people I love this year? (God, I hope not)

While lying in bed last night, my husband and I realized this is the year of our 10 year High School reunions. GASP! Can we really be this old?! I still remember graduating like it was, well, last month. My first year of college (at least most of it) is still fresh in my mind; I met quite a few of you that year. How has time passed so quickly? And how can I slow it down?

It seems with each passing year, I find myself busier, but not with worthwhile things. I rush from place to place; I'm always on a schedule. Perhaps this is why my years seem to fly by. Why I am now 10 years older, but am I wiser? I think so.

I may not have accomplished my teenage-world-is-my-oyster-shell dreams but maybe I've adapted to accept new ones. With each New Year I've made new friends, realized something profound about myself, and sometimes come to an understanding that I'm not meant to accomplish everything. And I think I'm ok with that.

Whatever this year holds for me I will use it as a learning experience. I will try to take every moment and live it. I will become the person I'm meant to be and make her even better

November 2006

I have a rose bush. Along with several other people, roses are my favorite flower. I can't take credit for this rose bush, though. It was planted by the woman who owned our home before us. It's just lovely, although right now there aren't any blooms as the cold nights have frozen most of them. When it does bloom, however, velvety, scarlet flowers take over the plant.

When the sun hits it just right, the scent envelops my entire backyard. Faint enough to not assault the nostrils, but strong enough to be noticed (much like those women who wear perfume correctly). It's wonderful to wake in the mornings smelling the cut blooms I took inside the previous day(s).

I love the fact that roses are delicate yet strong. Touch them the wrong way and they'll "get" you. You must be gentle, introduce yourself, never try to grab them. If they're treated well and are given the things they need; you will be rewarded.

And what a grand reward.

November 2006

101 Cookbooks Logo

Thai-spiced Pumpkin Soup

Keep in mind that different Thai curry pastes have differing strengths. Start with a teaspoon to start and then build from there until the soup has a level of spiciness and flavor that works for your palete. Top with toasted pumpkin seeds.

2 acorn squash, pumpkins, or other smallish winter squash
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 14-ounce can coconut milk
1 teaspoon (or more) red Thai curry paste
2 teaspoons fine grain sea salt (or to taste)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and place the oven racks in the middle.

Carefully cut each squash/pumpkin into halves (or quarters). Slather each piece of squash with butter, sprinkle generously with salt, place on a baking sheet skin sides down, and place in the oven. Roast for about an hour or until the squash is tender throughout.

When the pumpkin/squash are cool enough to handle scoop it into a large pot over medium high heat. Add the coconut milk and curry paste and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and puree with a hand blender, you should have a very thick base at this point. Now add water a cup at a time pureeing between additions until the soup is the consistency you prefer - a light vegetable stock would work here as well. Bring up to a simmer again and add the salt (and more curry paste if you like, I used just shy of 6 teaspoons but the curry paste I use is not over-the-top spicy).

Serves six.

I'm a nut for Thai food. Enjoy!

October 2006

After unpacking from my trip to OK, I couldn't help but notice my many wrinkle/wrinkle prevention creams, gels, lotions, cleansers, etc. I had in my toiletry bag. It's not like I'm geriatric, but I grew up watching my mom apply these elixirs of youth to her face and figured, since she looks so great, why not?

I'm obsessed with my forehead. Expression lines if you will. From raising my eyebrows in surprise or to accentuate a specific topic, from furrowing in anger or confusion, my forehead is wrinkled. So, I apply these magic lotions hoping to erase sun damage and years of expression.

I would never go so far as Botox. I like being able to lift my eyebrows when I smile after not seeing someone for awhile or furrow them at the stupid driver who cut me off. So, I'll just continue to wear bangs and apply my lotions and creams and hope that someday when I'm old and gray, I'll look at myself and know where they came from and hopefully have a few less than some other women.

October 2006

Just got back from walking my dogs and after taking the time to pick up a pile of Boss sh*t; I was very annoyed to see a mound of dog poo on the ground. So I thought to myself, "hmm they must not have had a poo bag." Then I started noticing piles with practically every other step. It's not like picking up dog poop is that hard a task. For crying out loud, it doesn't even cost that much. My baggies were $5 for 200 and it included a handy-dandy holder that clips onto the leash! So I realized dog logs are an epidemic in our neighborhood. Don't owners realize it is their responsibility to pick up after their dogs, whether it is in a park, on a walk or in their own backyards!

And here's the kicker, I saw a woman walking her dogs (and cat...whatever), she stops, her dog assumes the dog-dump-crouch and does his business. She looks around, obviously doesn't see me and walks away! Now, seeing as how she was meandering and we (Boss, Shelby and I) were walking; we could easily catch up to her. Which ,we did. Being fed up with seeing random dog piles everywhere I reacted. I pulled out a baggy from my "handy-dandy-holder" gave it to her and said, "for next time," smiled at her and continued to walk.

You have a dog, you must pick up the poo!