Sunday, December 16, 2012

Winning!! (Is that still topical?)

Sooo last week when I had the brilliant idea to do a giveaway, I failed to think it through.  Today is the day I announce the winner.  Which sort of requires I do another post.  Has anyone ever just done a post saying, Yay!  Here's the winner!  The End? 

I really want to do just that but it feels wrong.  I'm not sure why if feels wrong but I was taught from a young age to listen to that still small voice.  And who am I to go against the lessons of my youth?  *ahem*

So I'm going to post some pictures from Halloween that I should have done two months ago and THEN I'm going to announce the winner, thus alleviating my feelings of short-cutting yet another blog post.  Sort of.

Soooo... yeah.  We carved pumpkins.

They were not awesome.
But everyone dressing up at work?  Very awesome.

I went with the super sexy zipper face this year.  

What?  A turtleneck and bloody face isn't sexy?  Oh.  Maybe next year.  Probably not though.




What about now?  Sexy?  Yeah?  *sigh*  I TRY SO HARD!

Alright, I'm over this.  Erik's watching some snowboarding documentary and every 2 seconds bursts out with, "Whoah, Ginger!  Look at this!".  I can't concentrate.  Hold please while I google randomizer thingie so we can get a freaking winner already.

Side note, thank you everyone for entering and telling me which shots you liked.  I really loved going through everyone's picks and seeing all the different tastes.  

And here it is.  Lucky number 13.  Congrats Griffin!  Looks like editing for spelling and grammar pays off every so often.  E-mail me your address and which shot you'd like and I'll have Erik get started on it.
 
Enter a lower limit: 
Enter an upper limit:  27

   

Random Number: 13













Friday, December 7, 2012

Conversations in Stupidity. And a Giveaway!!!

The company I work for has outgrown the building we're currently in.  They've bought a new building in downtown Salt Lake and we're supposed to move on Monday.  This means I've been packing crap up and sorting through garbage I haven't looked at for years.  This includes old e-mails.  I've decided to share some of the more memorable e-mail exchanges.  Memorable because of their stupidity, or their ridiculousness or simply because it made me smile all over again.  OH!  And the main point of this post before I forget because I'm blogging while more than mildly intoxicated again, a giveaway!

 *GASP*  I KNOW!

I don't do giveaways.  But, Carrie has inspired me with the most generous blog giveaway I've yet to come across.  Okay, sure, I didn't win but in the spirit of Christmas, and Erik's agreement, I'm doin one dammit!

As you all know, Erik is an amazingly talented photographer and he's agreed to let me give away one of his prints in a Christmas giveaway.  The winner will be chosen next Sunday.  I don't know the exact date and I'm not googling a calendar right now.  The size of the print will be 16 x 24 and the actual photo will be your choice.  It will be hard to narrow it down to just one but life is full of challenges.  Click here to decide what you like.  Erik is effing amazing and no I'm not biased!  Also known as www.erikharrison.com 

So here are the rules:

1.  You have to follow my blog via GFC.
2.  You have to follow Vapid Vixen on facebook.
3.  You have to like every post ever posted by Vapid Vixen on facebook.
4.  You have to follow Vapid Vixen on twitter.
5.  You have to refer every person you've ever met to abide by rules stated above and leave a comment pinky promising that you've done everything I've asked of you.

Nah that's bullshit.  There is no VV on facebook or twitter so don't bother looking.  Actually, I have no idea if that's true, there may be.  But it's not me and she won't give you a stunning photo of your choice.  All you have to do to be entered in this contest is leave a comment.  Saying whatever the hell you feel like saying.  What I'm REQUESTING, though not required, is that you tell me which photo is your favorite.  Simply because I'm curious.  Some of his photos that I would never in a million years choose, have been others favorites.

The winner will be chosen by me depending on which blogger is my favorite that day.  What??  Fine.  I'll be diplomatic and will use one of those stupid randomizing thing-a-ma-giggers.

Moving on to the conversations in stupidity.

*Sunshine:  My little secret admirer just told me I was a terrible singer.

Me: Well he can't very well admit that you're like the siren's of fishermen lore leading his heart astray to crash on the rocky shores of infidelity.

Sunshine:  I read that 4 times and still don’t get it…..I think I need to go home…..

Me:  It's cool, cause,

 Sunshine:  You skank!!!  I thought that was a real strawberry.  You're so gross!!!

Me:  So sorry.  This better?  Less confusion??


Sunshine:  There is something really wrong with you.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

You all remember Toph?  Got this little gem from him.

Toph:
Thank you for being a friend.  You are the one in front.

Me:  And you're the short one in red.

Toph:  B.S.!!!  Everyone knows I'm Blanche....(yellow) Zero real friends, hates work, and mildly slutty.

I had no response.  There's no arguing with the truth.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As part of my job, I find instructors to teach courses for our company in different locations.  Below is a request to teach one of said courses from an instructor with a heavy Southern accent.

*Flynn:  I can teach this class.

Me:  Hi Flynn.  These classes are in Germany.

Flynn:  Have passport.  Will travel.

Me:  Flynn, are you fluent in German?

Flynn:  No.

Me:  .................

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Below is an e-mail that was forwarding it's way through the office accompanied by the response of one of the office employees.


Office Employee:  This freaking cat looks like an owl.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Anyone remember Napa Paul?  *Sigh*

NP:  Miss Vixen,

Good Afternoon.  How is your day going so far?  Any exciting plans for the weekend?

Cheers!
Napa Paul

Me:  It's after 2:00 in the afternoon and the IT department just got my computer working.  I have a lot of catching up to do.  How about you?

NP:  Sitting in a meeting, being borred. Getting ready to go finishing on the Sonoma Coast for Salmon.

Me:  I thought we talked about the whole spell check thing yesterday Paul.

NP:  My phone doesn't spell check that well.

Me:  That's what school was for.

NP:  What's that?

Me:  Learning how to spell.

NP:  Yes I agree my spelling does stink.  I'm really excited to see you next month in July.

Me:  Next month is June.

NP:  I am excited to see you in July!  Was that spelled right?

Me:  Yes, it was spelled correctly.  Well done.

NP:  Your would be a great teacher... A teacher of what? I could only imagine!

Me:  Oh my effing hell Paul.  You're killing me here!  YOUR would be??  COME ON!!!

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And finally, an e-mail to the entire sales department from my boss.

Cathy:
Who…. is celebrating FIVE…  yes 5 years at PDC as of this first week of October.  This means she officially now earns 15 days (i.e. THREE weeks) of paid vacation and can drive the company Porsche anytime she wants (it might be a Honda Accord or Civic, I’m not sure, don’t quote me).  Either way, we are happy she keeps cruisin’ along with us while having a riot of a time with the OS TEAM, woot woot!  She is the ‘wizard’ of all things instructors and travel and coordination and overall amazingness with the hard work and multiple projects she accomplishes each day.  Stop by and give Dawn a high-five for her wonderfulness!  Thanks Dawn for all you do!

     Cheers & thanks to our happy camper Dawn





Me:  Thanks Cathy and team.  However, I think the picture below may better depict how the last five years have affected me.









One word.    Hot.


 *Names have been changed to protect my overall health and well-being. 
 




 










Saturday, December 1, 2012

Boobs. Don't Get Excited. It's Not What You Think.

This is the last question in Carrie's 8 week long contest and per usual, I've waited until the last day to post.  Also, I have a birthday party I still need to get ready for so this post is gonna be quick and dirty.  Emphasis on the dirty.  But not the good kind...well, that depends on who you are, actually.  Stay with me here.

This week we were given two questions to choose from.

If you could be locked in somewhere overnight, where would it be and what would you do?  Would you be by yourself or with someone, and if so, who?

or...

Many of us have that one moment or decision that, if we could go back, we would choose differently.  If you could go back and get a do over, what would you do?


I choose the "do-over" question.  And my do-over moment would be my boobs.

This picture made me think of boobs and then I giggled.  Until I realized it would mean these poor boobs both have inverted nipples.  Which are gross.  But I'm in a hurry.  And don't want to google boobs anymore.


While I was in the middle of my longest relationship to date, I realized I was in competition for my significant others affections.  Not with just one other woman.  Nope.  It was with thousands of other women.  Perfectly sculpted and perfectly enhanced women with the sexual prowess and endurance of the hottest of energizer bunnies.  Yep.  He had it bad for porn.  Real bad.

I decided I'd better step up my game.  Having searched his history, I knew what he preferred.  And it wasn't what I had.

One little trip to the operating room, a slice here, and a shove there, and easy peasy.  Bigger boobs for Vapid!

Oddly enough, the relationship didn't last and we now live on opposite sides of the country.  Oh.  And I loathe porn.  I don't usually get very passionate or worked up.  I'm pretty apathetic about most things in life.  But porn?  I despise it.  I hate everything it does and everything it stands for.  I know that once again, this isn't the popular vote and again, I don't give a shit.  I know first hand how damaging it is.  It's damaging to the women in the life of the men who engage in it and it's damaging to men themselves to the point of physically and chemically altering the brain in negative ways.  

It's destroyed lives, it's destroyed relationships and it's destroyed families.  For someone to say it's "just porn", that person is an ignorant, mentally deficient imbecile who is too obtuse to see past their own dick.

So yeah.  Porn makes me angry.  Men being weak and pathetic with their addictions makes me angry.  The fact that I caved in to my insecurities to try to please a weak and pathetic man makes me disgusted with myself  and pitifully deplorable. 

Boobs.  That's my do-over.



Thursday, November 22, 2012

Some Turkey, Some Tears and Some Senses

Today has been one of my best Thanksgivings I can recall.  I slept in next to my incredible boyfriend who then got up and made me coffee with coconut creamer.

I scooped up the cat and marveled at her fluffiness and the velvety softness of her nose.

I eventually got around to making my assigned side dishes with my favorite tunes jamming through the house.  That is, after Erik ventured out to buy me a casserole dish.  A brownie pan is not suitable for a green bean casserole.  Or so he claims.  Whatever.

We get to my parents house where children and chaos ensue.  The nephews are chasing each other through the house, my sick little niece sounds like a two year old asthmatic smoker and the baby squeals like a cherubic stuck piglet every time I grab his leg rolls. 

Jazz Hands perfected!



Don't let those baby blues fool ya.  She's currently got the voice of an 80 year old lounge singer.



"Anonymous" with possibly the happiest baby in Utah.




 Dinner is aromatic and beyond delicious.  I forget to savor it and am full well before I want to be.

After dinner come games of air hockey, pool and crokinole.  Before I can be suckered into a frustrating game of crokinole that will most likely end with me flipping the board, scattering the pieces and frightening the children, I bundle up the kids and head out to the park.

She was not stoked to be in her brothers coat and stuck in a stroller that her incompetent Aunt allowed to fold in on her. 

Inevitably, one of the children have to be scolded after deliberately throwing a ball at his sisters face.  His apology dissolves into tears streaking down his little cheeks.  I pull him in for a hug and do my best not to crush the sweet tiny life out of him.

Because of Carrie's most recent post question,

You have to give up one of your senses.  Which one will it be and why?

I've been more aware of my senses today than the usual lackadaisical assumption that they're all still intact and fully functioning.  And now I'm being asked to hypothetically part with one of them?  How do you choose something like that?

To never bury my nose into the neck of my newest nephew and inhale his clean, perfect scent?
To never hear Erik's groggy, voice in the mornings after a night of me thrashing about and him apparently dreaming of Camelot say, "You were the most restless Ginger in all the realm last night".
To never be able to feel the warmth and strength of his hugs ever again?  Or the soft squishy rolls of fat baby legs?
To never see the love in his eyes mixed with mild amusement when he looks at me after I've done or said something particularly asinine.
Which leaves what?  Taste.  As tragic as it would be to give up being able to taste the salt on his neck or the tang of my favorite margarita, I can't fathom living my life missing the other parts of it that have come to mean so much to me.

And so, on this Thanksgiving, I'm grateful to have the healthy function of all of my senses.  Which also brings me to a side note.  Which shouldn't be a side note but I don't feel like it's my post to write.  Momo is a fellow blogger who I came to follow via Brett.  Brett just got back from visiting Momo a short while ago.  A trip that Momo had also invited me to meet up on.  Never having met me, or even talked to me other than online, she was willing to welcome me into her home.  That alone endeared me to her.

Last week, Momo had a stroke.  She's still in the hospital and that's where she's spent her Thanksgiving.  Even with all she's struggling with, she's been positive, upbeat, a fighter, and grateful.  Brett wrote a beautiful tribute to her here which made me equally glad to count him as a friend all over again.

So when you find a quiet moment during your Thanksgiving, please take a minute to say a prayer for Momo, send positive thoughts and be grateful.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thanksgiving Before Christmas? Who Cares As Long As There's Pie!

Seriously?  It's already time for the next question?  I haven't even responded to the comments from the last post yet.  Let's just get on with it, shall we?

Carrie's amazing contest is still happening and it's not too late to join in, although I really hope you don't.  Because that means the odds stay in our favor.  The few of us who were smart enough to participate.  And this weeks question is:

How do you feel about the holidays this time of the year, particularly the ever-melding of ThanksChristgivmasing that is continually being 'pushed' more and more each year?



My opinion is, I don't care.  I know this isn't the popular answer and to that, I also don't care.  As a matter of fact, I kind of appreciate the reminder that Christmas is right around the corner.  And I'll tell you why.  I'm that idiot who thinks they have all the time in the world to get their Christmas shopping done.  And then, guess what?  I'm at the mall on Christmas Eve, shouldering my way through the crowds in a panic trying to recall if a Victoria's Secret gift card is an appropriate gift for my 7 year old niece or if I could get away with re-gifting a dildo that was only used once for an online review.  I wouldn't re-gift that to my niece, of course.  That would just be absurd. 

I like Thanksgiving and I like Christmas.  Both of them represent a time of year to reflect on what we're thankful for, what we're blessed with and to appreciate the people and creatures in our lives that we adore and love.  This is what I think about when I hear Jingle Bells being played through the speakers at the mall.  I don't think about the commercialism of Christmas or the obligations or the money that I'm required to spend.  I DO think about the people in my life who will appreciate the small (very small) tokens of love I'll send them to show that they've been in my thoughts and that I care about them.

I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving.  Spending it with my family who I love like nothing else in the world and who drive me crazy like nothing else in the world.  For me, Thanksgiving and Christmas are both a time to celebrate the things we hold most dear.  Family, friends, loves, our beliefs.  In my opinion the sooner we start up the band to remind us of what's important to us, the better.  How can that be a bad thing?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Some Dreams Were Always Meant to Die

This contest is seriously forcing me to post way beyond my usual slackerly comfort level.  However, about an hour ago Erik went out to measure the snow and it was at 8.5 inches and hasn't let up.  He wanted to head up to Alta to go snowboarding.  Alta is a ski resort that only allows skiers.  Which means, we lug our snowboards up the mountain ourselves and ride down.  Only to turn around and hike back up the mother huggin mountain.  I've done this with him once.  Okay, fine, twice.  And it's EXHAUSTING!  Not only am I decked out in my snowboarding boots and full on gear, I'm carrying my freaking heavy snowboard, UP A MOUNTAIN, where there is NO AIR TO BREATHE.

So I politely declined today's invitation stating I had a post to write.  For Carrie's ongoing contest for an amazingly generous prize which I'm not going to tell you because I already have once and it's too good to repeat for you lazy lazies. 

This time she had Ken from Ken-inatractor guest post for the next question.


Have you ever been on a trip or vacation that while things appeared to be going badly, something happened that changed your mind, from worst trip ever to, meh....this wasn't so bad?


And my answer is yes.  Yes I have.  End post.

*sigh*

Even though it wasn't an open-ended question, I have a feeling simply answering yes wouldn't count as an entry.  So let me elaborate.

I grew up in Canada.  Where there is no Disneyworld or Land.  When my parents informed the family we would be moving to Florida, they bribed us into submission by saying we would all be able to go to Disneyworld. 

For the next year before the move, I fell asleep dreaming of our new home in exotic Florida where we would be living in a hut on the beach, sleeping in hammocks strung up between two palm trees and being serenaded to sleep by the melodic cacophony of toucans and parrots. 

Tampa shanked that dream to death nearly the moment we arrived.  There were palm trees at least.  And I still had the promise of Disneyworld. 

The day finally arrived where we all piled into the family van.  All 6 of us.  Oh wait, Gram was with us.  All 7 of us.  In a van.  In Florida.  With no air conditioning.  While we drove for over an hour to Orlando.

It sucked.

But we made it.  Dad got us parked and we all stumbled our way to the shuttle that would take us to the tram that would take us to the gate where we waited in line to pay a month of my Dad's salary to get us all in to the happiest place on earth.

One by one we push through the turn-stile.  We walk through.  I look down Main St. and with heart pounding I gaze at Cinderella's castle for the first time in my life, convinced I just may die from excitement.  With eyes fixed on the glorious, majestic spires, I start to make my way down Main St. in a dazed, dream-like state. 



And then I hear it.

The wet splatter of vomit hitting cobblestone.

I whip around just in time to witness my youngest sister, doubled over, retching up another round of her breakfast.

We all shuffle back through the turn-stile, to the gate, back on the tram, that took us to the shuttle that dumped us off at the parking lot where we all piled into the stifling van for the dejected hour ride back home. 

There's no "meh, that wasn't so bad".  Because it was.  This is the end of the story.  But the prompt reminded me of this family adventure just in time for Thanksgiving dinner at the parentals.  Where my youngest sister will be.

I think I'll take her a barf bag with mickey ears.





 

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Closest Thing to a Political Post You'll Ever See From Me

I met a friend for lunch yesterday.  By lunch I mean we had bloody mary's.  And by we I mean me.  He doesn't drink.  So I had one for him too.  Didn't want him to feel left out. 

Oddly enough, I ran into E1 there.  Remember him?  It went a little something like this:

I got up to get my second bloody mary.  In typical fashion, I was staring at my feet on my way back to our booth.  I happened to look up and noticed, sitting in the booth right next to ours, was E1.

E1: "Hi Dawn."

Me: Wide eyed deer in headlights panic stricken response of "Hi". 

I don't like to come across as overly verbose.  It tends to overwhelm people. 

I stare at him for a second.

I turn and stare at his date for an equal second. 

I turn my entire body in a stiff robotic way and continue on to my booth where I sit down and mentally chastise myself for not coming up with something witty, intelligent or at the very least, socially acceptable to say.

I felt like the bottom of my stomach had dropped out.  A few minutes later they both got up and left the bar.  Without saying goodbye!  Some people have absolutely no sense of couth.

Anyhow E1, congrats on your downgrade.  She's one hell of a 5.

How weird.  Insulting someone who will never read this post doesn't really make me feel any better.  *shrug*

Moving on.  This post isn't about my pathetic insecurities.  It's about others pathetic insecurities.

With the last day of the election coming up, my friend and I inevitably started discussing politics and what people stand for, believe in, and believe what is worth fighting for.

My friend is gay.   

I believe in the usual run-of-the-mill Christian beliefs.  I don't understand being gay.  And although someone called me a "fat dyke" from the window of a passing car the other day, I can't really say I've been persecuted for who I am.  Ever.

My friend has not only been persecuted for it, he's been assaulted.  As in, attacked outside of a club in downtown Salt Lake and beaten over the head with chunks of asphalt. 

As he was showing me the pictures of his bloody scalp and stitches, I couldn't keep my eyes from welling up and chills ran up and down my body creating goose bumps all over my arms. 

I don't understand being gay.  I don't know if people are born gay or if it's a lifestyle choice they make.  Either way, it's who they are, and for them to be attacked out of blind, ignorant hate, is unfathomable.  This sort of hate scares the mother hugging crap out of me.  This is the sort of illogical, unthinking hate that would have someone burning me to death simply because I have red hair.  Oh.  Wait.  That's been done.  Luckily our civilization has advanced well beyond those barbaric days.  Thank God.

I don't understand being gay but I understand that he is my friend and I love him dearly and will defend his right to love who he chooses.






Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Genius Plan Born of a Fully Functioning Noodle, and a Rave!

In an effort to diminish my boredom while waiting for "those begging little peasants" (Erik's words, not mine) to finally make it to our door to collect their free sugar, I've decided to finally get around to answering question #4 in Carries amazing contest, the great get-away-give-away.  If you haven't already checked it out, don't bother.  It's totally lame and the prize isn't even anything that cool.  Trust me on this.

Right.  So.  Question #4.

This is a tough one for me.  I'm one of those lucky individuals who usually find myself at the center of envy because of my natural fluidity and grace in all things.

Except for that one time I nearly fell off the mountainside mountain biking.  Or got my snowboard caught under a root and gave myself a wicked ice rash.  Across my face.  Or the time I peed myself at my boyfriends family wedding.

I've really had to do a lot of soul searching to come up with something.  Anything, really.  And then I remembered.

The year was 1993.  I was a junior in high school near Tampa, FL.  My best friend Mandy had flown in from Ontario, Canada to stay with me for awhile.  I took her to the local hangout to play pool.

We met a couple of boys.  One of these boys was named Grady.

Grady had a pierced tongue.

Although, thinking back now, I probably only liked him because his name made me think of gravy.  I was awfully thin back then and probably hungry a lot.

Grady and friend invited Mandy and I to go with them the next night to a rave in Ybor City.

Ybor City.  Looks totes legit, right?

I had never been to a rave before but had heard about them and they sounded like the sort of thing depraved, deviant sort of individuals attended.  And really?  Allow two virtual strangers with questionable piercings and questionable motives drive us to Ybor for a night of dancing and debauchery?


Naturally, we were in.

I've read that teenagers aren't working with a fully functioning noggin.  Pretty sure that's a myth.

We made plans for them to pick us up at the end of the street at the agreed upon time the next night.  The agreed upon time being 2:00am.  The family would be asleep allowing us to slip from my second floor bedroom, out the front door and into the night unnoticed with plenty of time to be back, snug in bed before everyone awoke for church.

Dad didn't cooperate with out plan.  He had another one of his migraines and was still awake downstairs watching t.v.

We were determined and resourceful. 

Plan B!  The bathroom window on the second floor was just big enough for us to squeeze through.  It lined up with the balcony that was a few feet down.  It was decided that I would go feet first.  I squeezed and shimmied through that window like a baby oozing it's way through the birth canal. 

I'd decided once I made it out the window, I'd use the side of the house to push myself off, land on the balcony and take the balcony steps down from there.

The reality was, I made it out the window and gravity took over.  I hung from the window ledge by my fingertips for .02 seconds before sliding down the side of the house and landing in a broken, forlorn heap on the balcony.  At which point I proceeded to laugh so hard that I peed my pants.  

I really need to look into buying a new bladder.

We made it to the rave and it was...an experience.  One I never repeated again. 

This may have been when my intense aversion to crowds began.


She looks like the girl who was in the bathroom promising to catch her friend if she got dizzy after snorting...something.  I didn't stick around to ask.  The epitome of a considerate, thoughtful friend though.


Grady and friend dropped us at the end of my street with 30 minutes to spare before everyone was to wake for church.  Mandy and I booked it to the backyard to climb in the first floor bathroom window.  Even with our poorly formed brains, we knew there was no physical possibility of us scaling back up the side of the house to the 2nd floor window.

I climbed in feet first again and stepped down onto the toilet seat.

Only there was no seat.  Dad forgot to put the seat down. 

I left a soggy one-footed trail all the way upstairs and didn't care that the evidence led straight to my bedroom door. 

Stupid Grady with his stupid tongue piercing and his stupid rave.


Monday, October 22, 2012

This Post Is Not About Snot. Mostly.

It's quite possible I may be the most poorly named individual in the Western Hemisphere.  I was born bouncing face down on the front seat of a snot green Gremlin during the mad race to the hospital while the first rays of dawn were making their daily appearance. 

Is it any surprise I'm not particularly fond of anything happening before the sun has even bothered to get up?  Or that I hate all things snot related?  Why, just the other night, while brushing my teeth, I spit into the sink.  The consistency of my spit was very mucus-like which caused me to start gagging.  I gagged so hard I ended up puking my dinner into the sink.  Ever tried picking regurgitated lettuce out of your sink stopper?  I did not enjoy it.

So yeah, Dawn.  At least they didn't name me snot.

I'm getting off track again.  Carrie over at The Slow-Dripped Life has asked question #3 for her amazing give-away.  When I decided to participate in this, I failed to think it through.  I post maybe once or twice a month, when I'm feeling motivated.  Her contest requires that I answer a question she posts every week for, what is it, 8 weeks?  Holy crap.  This just may be my undoing.  I struggle just trying to keep up with my favorite blogs, never mind actually post something of my own.  *sigh*  I'm already tired.  Nevertheless, this week she asked "Where do you find yourself most centered, most connected to life and your most true self?"

Erik and I go camping.  A lot.  Last month he took me to the Grand Canyon for the second time.  I was a little hesitant considering what we came home to last Labor Day at the Grand Canyon.  Our home had been burglarized while we were away.  They busted in the doggy door and cleaned us out.  All of Erik's photography equipment and scanner.  Every last piece of jewelry I owned, including a silver cuff bracelet from my Gram who had recently passed away.  They stole my half used Victoria's Secret lotion (really?  It's only $9. Get your own) but by far the most heinous offense?  They stole Erik's very favorite beer right out of the fridge.  What kind of monsters steal your BEER?  I'll tell you what kind.  The stupid kind.  They left Erik's road bike ($4,500) and my laptop that's less than a year old.  See?  Stupid.

Even more stupid?  Going for a hike in jeans, wool socks and a long sleeve shirt.  
Yeah, that's boob sweat.  And I'm pretty happy about it. 

And while I think hanging out on the precipice of a crumbly rock with bumbling tourists stumbling around behind you is also incredibly stupid, it did make for some amazing photos.

I'm not biased, he's just that good.
This was Cape Royal at Sunset.  Which is not in the morning.  Which brings me back to Dawn.  Or rather, the opposite of.  With all the griping and complaining I do when Erik drags me off into the wilderness, I love it.  Well, to be more specific, I love the part of camping when we're both sitting by the fire, vino in hand, head tilted back staring at the stars. 



My problems are put back into perspective, my shoulders relax back to their intended position, and my sighs become sighs of contentment rather than frustration.

Not the Grand Canyon.  Obviously.  One of his trips to Monument Valley.

I can't exactly describe what it is.  It's just a feeling.  I find serenity in the darkness accented by the stars.  It's a rare moment of calm that I haven't found anywhere else.  And I cherish it.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

I Don't Really Want You To Read This. I'm Just Following The Rules.

Ugh!  I don't even wanna tell you guys about this because it's such an amazing giveaway.  Unfortunately, spreading the word is part of the rules and if I'm known for anything, it's being a stickler for rules.  Although, every now and then, I do like to cut loose and go a little crazy. 

Why, just the other night, I ran with scissors!  And then used those very same scissors to cut the tag off my mattress.  Which is totally illegal you guys!

But enough about what a bad ass I am and back to the matter at hand.  Carrie, over at The Slow-Dripped Life, is giving away a trip.  Yep.  The Great Get-Away Give-Away.  And Pickleope, if you're reading this, if I win this one, I'm keeping it.  You're amazing but I live in Utah for hells sake.  I gotta escape every chance I get! 

Just click on the link to check out the rules and while she doesn't require it, you should go ahead and follow her while you're at it.

I missed the first week's question because I was out of town.  For my birthday.  With one of my best friend's Kelly.  At Disneyland.  Yeah.  Two grown women went to Disneyland together.  Which nicely segues into Carrie's question for this week.  What is one of your most favorite travel memories or trips?

I had a blast this last weekend in California.  We made the 10 hour drive down and stayed in Mission Viejo.  We had some interesting conversations during that drive.  90% of which can not be repeated on this blog.  Something you should know about Kelly.  She is also a bad ass.  She's 6'0 and has had the lap band surgery to help with her life long struggle with weight loss.  She has been diligent with her food intake and meetings with her trainer.  She's been working SO hard and has so far lost 120 pounds.  Every day is a new struggle for her and she's admitted that she is addicted to food the way others are addicted to drugs. 

I had just eaten a handful of pretzels from a bag I'd just purchased and tossed the leftovers into the back.  In trying to explain her addiction she said,

"I would give anything right now to finish off that bag of pretzels.  I would blow you to get to those pretzels."

I pointed out the problematic fact that I was lacking a penis.

She countered, "If you HAD a penis, looked like a penis, if you were one giant mobile penis, I would blow you to get to those pretzels." 

This was not my most favorite travel memory. 

But this one is pretty close:


 Kay, not really.  Just evidence that Kelly is an asshole.  Which is why she's one of my favorite people.

THIS however, really will be one of my favorite travel memories.  Kelly hadn't gone on a roller coaster since she was in junior high because of her size.  She decided she was willing to risk personal embarrassment and possible humiliation and hope she could fit in The Screamer.  I promised her if the harness wouldn't fit, I would fake a seizure while throwing up on myself.  Happily, for all involved, there was no need.  For her first roller coaster in a long time, we got the front seat and screamed our throats raw.  And THAT really will be one of my favorite travel memories forever. 

Love the dude yawning behind us.  Whatev's.  It was terrifying.


And while that was awesome, it was nothing compared to the terror we faced on Splash Mountain.  And by "we" I mean me.

Shit just got real on Splash Mountain. 

And this is random but I had no recollection that they sold turkey legs at Disney.  Is this a new thing?  I hadn't been here since '95 and I do not recall this atrocity.  Kelly was very excited to get her required grams of protein in while I tried to keep my dry-heaving to a minimum. 

I can't honestly be the only person who thinks this is revolting, can I?

It was a great trip and I remembered how much I loved all things Disney.  The one and only complaint I have about the place?  All the damn children.  They were EVERYWHERE!  No matter where we turned, children!  And some were even crying.  Ugh.  Like I wanna deal with THAT at the happiest place on earth.

Oh the anguish of having to wait for your turn on the teacups!

All in all it was a fantastic birthday weekend.  I rekindled my love affair with the beach, went to an Irish Pub for cheese-steak and wine (What? They totally go together) and had my tarot cards read by an 800 year old Bulgarian psychic.

I may be old, but life is good. 

I didn't even break anything!





Monday, October 1, 2012

Is There A Way To Block Your Mother From Reading Your Blog?

I went to a wedding in Washington this past June.  Erik's cousin was getting married so he asked me to go with him and meet all of his family that I hadn't yet.  Both of his parents live in Pennsylvania and they were the only family I'd met.  He's got a schload of family.  Cousins, Aunts, Uncles and his sister were all going.  I promised him I wouldn't embarrass him

That was a promise I was not able to keep.

I flew into Seattle where Erik picked me up and we headed to Anacortes where the bride and groom were living.  Before we were even out of the car his Mom and Sister were out the front door to greet us with giant bear hugs.  His Sister was sarcastic, witty and drank before 5pm.  I liked her immediately.

The house was bursting at the seams with his family and people I didn't know.  I was overwhelmed at times and a little claustrophobic.  I will admit that I had to bail for awhile and hid out in the truck for about 30 min's before I was retrieved to ask what kind of wine his Sister should get for me at the store.

She returned with a six pack of wine.  I never knew such things could exist.  I was now thoroughly in love.

The next day we took the ferry to Friday Harbor and made our way to the cabin we would be staying at on Roche Harbor for the next couple of nights.

I'd forgotten how much I missed living near an ocean.

The $400/night "cabin" we had to rough it in.

 Roche Harbor was absolutely beautiful.  I grew up in a little place on Lake Ontario called Port Dalhousie and this place made me feel like I was back there as a little girl.  Only now I had boobs.  A boyfriend.  And I could drink.  Other than that, exactly the same.


The first night there was a pre-wedding party down on the beach.  It was quite a distance from the harbor and our cabins.  They had white tents and heat lamps set up.  Catered food and an open bar complete with a nice young chap who would pour you as many glasses of wine as you desired.  Also on site for your bowel evacuation needs?  A Honey Bucket.  Also known as a port-o-potty.  I made it clear at the beginning I would NOT be stepping foot inside of that atrocity.  Trying to disguise it's revolting purpose by naming it something sweet and inviting wasn't going to work in luring me in.  I would simply hold it until we got back.  I was taking a stand.

Taking a stand is easy to do when you're not 4 glasses of vino into the evening.  

By now it's dark and everyone is milling around the random heat lamps and huddling next to the fire pit.  My bladder and my mind are at war with each other when I hear one of his cousins mention she has to pee.  I pounce like a fat chick on an eclair and convince her to take a stroll with me in the woods where refined  ladies do their peeing.  Not in the poorly named Honey Bucket of disgrace.

She'd just met me the day before so in her defense she didn't know any better when she agreed.  With arms linked we skip off into the woods and head up a hill.  She goes to one side, I go to the other.  I drop trou and breathe a sigh of relief as a torrent of recycled wine waters the forest floor.  I reach down to pull up my undies when, wait.  What's this?  Where the hell are my underwear?  I look down and realize in my inebriated rush, I somehow forgot to pull them down with my pants.

I have just pissed my underwear.  At my boyfriends family function.

Ugh!  With pants around my ankles, I waddle over to the nearest tree screeching for my pee pal, Emily, to help hold me up while I struggled out of the offending clothing.  I get them off and fling them into the darkness of night.

As we head back to the fire, I warn her, "Not a word that I'm going commando, right?".  She simply giggles in response.

The guys are standing around the fire pit holding their beers and smirking.  Erik is just looking at me and shaking his head.
Emily's husband asks, "Did you two know everyone could see you?".  He motions with his beer and I look up the hill to the spot where we just were and sure enough, it was directly in the line of vision for anyone on the beach facing the woods.
He continues, "and just what the hell were you doing up there?  Which of you was the waddler?" 
I hang my head in shame and Emily blurts out my secret which is immediately followed by howls of laughter from everyone who was within earshot.

The next day I had an odd pang of conscience and decided tossing your underwear into the forest is the equivalent of littering.  And that just wouldn't do. 

On my hike back through the harbor to the beach and then the woods, I had to pass the wedding party going through their rehearsal.  One of the groomsmen saw me, waved, and asked if I was going to buy new underwear. 

I resisted the urge to shoot him the bird and walked faster.

After scrabbling through possible poison oak, I located the urine soaked panties and shoved them in my jacket pocket. 

On my way back I ran into the Father of the Groom and one of the other girls.  They stop me to chit chat asking what I'm up to this morning.  I mumble something about having to run an errand.  She says, "Oh yeah?  And errand?" while looking at me expectantly. 

I stare at her like a demented deer caught in urine yellow headlights while I imagine the panties in my pocket soaking through my jacket, creating a giant pee stain that spreads across my entire right side. 

4 seconds of non-responsive silence. 

I finally mutter something, seriously no idea what, and take off towards the cabin wondering why in the hell I ever  promised Erik I wouldn't embarrass him.  We both should have known better.

Eventually it's time for the wedding.  We get dressed and head down.  I didn't know the venue when I packed for the trip.  I took 4" heels.  The venue included this treacherous cobblestone hill.

Which is actually way steeper than it looks.
Which goes around the properties...

Winds around the gardens...

And then to the grass where heels tend to sink and not fare too well.
 Erik chastised me for my choice in footwear as I nearly went down like a bag of dirt twice in 30 seconds.  I looked down at his feet then back at him questioningly.  He had forgotten his shoes altogether and was wearing his chacos with his suit.  A classy pair we made.

The Bride knew to wear flats.  Cheater.
Erik and his Sister (who was one of the groomsmen) deciding if my shoes would make a better beer stein or a weapon.
Erik's cousin Emily.  AKA, my pee pal.

The Bride dancing with the Best Man.  Kay, not really, he's the Groom.

Traditional North American Wedding dance.  The Groom is the one with the tie around his head.  


I honestly don't know how everyone managed to wake up in time to catch the ferry back to Anacortes the next morning.  

 
  In conclusion, I would like to say it was a grand time had by all and though I may have peed myself, I feel it imperative I point out that this last picture is NOT a picture of me puking into the back seat.  Thank you very much.



Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I'll Never Be Mistaken for Sporty Spice.

I've been having an amazingly busy, awesome, frightening summer.  I mentioned in my previous post that I don't do well with strangers.  And so, in a totally logical move, I joined the Beehive Sport and Social Club and played Volleyball with the team Vicious and Delicious.  Or, VD for short.  Cause, you know, saying the entire name is far too taxing.  We had a rough start and soon found ourselves in last place.  But with our rallying cry of "We don't completely suck!  We don't completely suck!" we soon moved our way up the ranks and managed to scrape by with a last minute win to qualify for the semi-finals.

Which we immediately lost.  Shocking.  With moves like these...

It's all about intimidation.  And that girl on the other side of the net.  She was intimidated.

Erin sacrificing the body.  And succeeding!

We're the amazing team on the left.  Falling all over the ground.  While being awesome.  Obvs.

If anything, she's graceful.  Just look at that form.  Perfection!

Yup.  Me cowering.  The normal response when one has balls flying at their face.

Erin massaging my cheeks after I just got face-spiked.  Which was not awesome.


We ended up losing by 2 points to the team who won the championship.  We put up a damn good fight and we're banding together with a couple of new players to take on the fall season league. 

In other not-so-close-to-winning news, I've also joined a coed softball team.  Candito's husband plays on a team that was in desperate need of an extra female player.  And when I say desperate need, I'm not exaggerating in the least.  They won the whole thing last year.  I haven't swung a bat since little league.  I'm not kidding when I say they were desperate.

I agreed and showed up.  I was sent to right field.  I hung out.  It was boring.  It was perfect for me.

The next week, Erik made pizza before I was supposed to head out for the game.  I packed a couple of slices to take with me.  I figured I'd have time to eat them while standing around in right field, watching the game as a spectator. 

Tragically, upon arrival, I was informed I would be the catcher.  I laughed in Mike's face.  He convinced me he was not joking.  Mother hugging effing shit.

Okay.  Cool.  No biggie.  (Except it was)

This isn't just a friendly softball game.  No.  These people play to win.  What's THAT about?
The week before, one of the guys tore his calf muscle.  So he wasn't playing this week.  He was probably last week's catcher.  

We're up to bat.  Keith is up and I'm on deck.  He hits it and takes off towards first base.  I look over just in time to see him collide with first base and do this weird front shoulder roll which looked oddly graceful at the time.  He pops up and he's safe.  I'm up.  Hearts thumping when Mike calls for a time-out and Keith saunters up stating non-nonchalantly, "I think I broke my collarbone".
He pulls his jersey to the side and BAM!

Kay, I actually have no idea who this man is, but poor Keith's shoulder looked something like this.
 Like a mother hugging alien invasion had taken up residence under his skin in the form of a pop-up tent.  It was not okay.

Keith went to the hospital.  

Soon enough it was the other team's turn to bat and I slowly took my place behind home plate.  The umpire was 800 years old and I could feel his hot breath on my neck.

Candice was standing on the other side of the fence providing moral support.  She asked if I was okay.  She said, "Dawn, you alright?  You look scared.".

My response, "I AM scared.  I'm wearing pink nail polish.  I don't belong here!"  She laughed.  I think she thought I was kidding.

I wasn't. 

We lost that game 11-23.