Jenster's Musings

Monday, October 30, 2006

Celebrity Look Alike

Devonna and Jodi did this and it looked like a lot of fun. I used the best picture I could find - not saying much. But here's what I ended up with:

http://www.myheritage.com


Halle Berry and Brooke Burke?????? Wait til my son gets a load of that!!! LMAO!!!!!

I tried it again with a different picture and I got totally different results:

http://www.myheritage.com


Here's the funny thing. When we watched Van Helsing and Underworld, Todd would say about Kate Beckinsale, "She's hot, but not as hot as you." (We're back to his delusions.) I think I need one of those outfits!!

Mused by Jenster :: 12:00 PM :: 9 People musing:

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Thursday, October 26, 2006

5 Truths

I was tagged by both Devonna and Jodi to give 5 truths. This was really hard at first because I couldn't think of anything that people maybe didn't already know. But the deeper I looked, the easier it became. And scarier. Especially because I hate being vulnerable.

So here are five of the many truths I thought about:

#1 – I don’t like talking on the phone. Every now and then I enjoy talking to someone on the phone, but for the most part I’d much rather email. Most people think I’m a pretty chatty person – and I can be. But the older I get the quieter I’m becoming.

#2 – I always thought of myself as a patient and selfless person. I’m starting to realize this is not true and I don’t like this about me.

#3 – No matter how hard I try not to, I have an irrational sense of guilt over increasing my daughter’s risk of breast cancer. Before me we had no family history of the disease. Nearly a year to the day after my diagnosis my mother was diagnosed. On one hand that has relieved my guilt a little. On the other hand, however, it just increases my daughter’s risk even more.

#4 - I feel like I’m sort of good at a lot of things, but not really good at anything. I quit work as a legal assistant nearly 12 years ago and did some medical transcribing from home for a while. I’ve been thinking about going back to work – at least part time – but I have no idea what I’m even qualified to do anymore. My secret dream is to become a published author – preferably preteen historical fiction. But that’s an awfully lofty goal and chances are it’s one I’ll never meet.

#5 - I love how anesthesia makes me feel. You know when they tell you to count backwards and you say, “100, 99, 98,” and the next thing you know you’re in a completely different room and the nurse is asking how you feel? I LOVE that! I probably could have easily become a drug addict if I’d had the slightest inclination.

Okay. That's all I'm required or willing to share at the moment. So now I'm going to tag Amanda and Amy.

Mused by Jenster :: 9:20 PM :: 14 People musing:

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Monday, October 23, 2006

It's a Rock Band

My son, Taylor, is 14-years-old and plays bass guitar in one of the youth bands at church. Last night was his band's second time to play. It is SO much fun watching him up there and seeing how comfortable he's getting in front of the audience. The band is starting to meld together, too. So here are a couple pictures:

This, apparently, is what a cool bass player looks like. You can't tell, but his sweatshirt says "Hendrix" on it. I think there may be some unwritten rule that if you play electric guitar you must own one bit of clothing which pays homage to Jimi.


And this would be the band in its entirety. As you can see, they have a good time.


On another note, I'm still making my way through Eragon. Reading and blogging will be spotty at best this week as I've got company. So until the next time, ROCK ON!

Mused by Jenster :: 10:24 AM :: 6 People musing:

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Friday, October 20, 2006

Star Trek does Monty Python's Holy Grail

If you're into Monty Python's zany humor, you'll love this! (Aim - I, of course, immediately thought of you)

The Holy Grail as interpretted by the Cast of Star Trek

Mused by Jenster :: 11:06 AM :: 3 People musing:

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It's Friday!!

It's a rainy Friday at that. You know what would make it perfect? If I could just get comfy in the big green chair with a White Chocolate Mocha from Starbucks, one of their coffee cakes, and the book I'm reading (Eragon). Actually, it would be even better if I was reading something from my own TBR pile and not something off my son's bookshelf. Don't get me wrong. I'm enjoying Eragon. It just hasn't sucked me in to where I can't put it down. I don't have to say, "Wait until I get to a good stopping point" (which is always several more chapters away).

This is a very good thing for the simple reason that my parents are coming in from out of town this evening. I promised my mother they'd have a clean bathroom and clean sheets. Since this will be the first time they've ever been here I'd really like the house to look nice. And it would have, too. If I hadn't started painting the living room the other day. *smacking forehead* Why do I do this to myself??

So here are my plans for the day:

* Clean sheets/blankets (already in the wash)
* Clean bathrooms (blech)
* Second coat of paint in the living room (meh)
* Load dishwasher (not so bad)
* Sweep/mop kitchen floor (*pout*)
* Vacuum stairs (waaaaaaaa)
* Pay bills (Snapple! I forgot about this one!)
* Spend as little time on the computer as physically possible (YIKES!)

The one shining light in all this is that I had to run to Target to get another roller pan liner. You know what that means... And if you don't, read ++this++.

I may not have the luxury of curling up to a good book this nice, rainy morning. But since I had to go to Target anyway, I am enjoying my delicious White Chocolate Mocha and their yummy coffee cake.

So how was this for mundane ramblings??

Mused by Jenster :: 9:19 AM :: 7 People musing:

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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Shifting the Focus

I really need to take the attention off of what I may or may not be guilty of - some of which is up for debate apparently.

Since I'm in the middle of painting my living room I'm taking the easy way out. I went to Blogthings and got this:




Your Halloween Costume Should Be



A Girl Scout


What Should You Be For Halloween?


Not quite sure how I feel about being a Girl Scout. What about the rest of you??

Mused by Jenster :: 10:52 AM :: 14 People musing:

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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Guilty/Not Guilty

I've seen this on a couple other blogs. If those bloggers are brave enough to confess, then I suppose I am, too.

Guilty Or Not Guilty...This is the question

1. Dated outside your race?
GUILTY (Highschool dances count, right?)

2. Singing in the shower?
GUILTY (and I sound surprisingly like Anna Nalick)

3. Spit in someone's drink?
NOT GUILTY (I don't think so, anyway).

4. Played with Barbies?
GUILTY (No comments from you, Terri. I'm sure your old Barbies wouldn't have been worth much, even if I hadn't given them shags and pierced their ears!)

5. Made someone cry?
DAILY -- I mean GUILTY (Favorite quote to use on my children - "Squirt some tears, punk!)

6. Opened your Christmas presents early?
NOT GUILTY (I don't remember doing that anyway).

7. Lied to a friend?
GUILTY ("No! Those jeans don't make your butt look big.").

8. Watched and cried while watching a soap opera?
NOT GUILTY (I'm the Ice Queen. Of course not!)

9. Played a computer game for more than 5 hours?
NOT GUILTY (Probably 4 hours and 55 minutes or so, though.)

10. Ran through the sprinklers naked?
NOT GUILTY (What a horrible image!).

11. Ate food that fell on the floor?
GUILTY (of course!).

12. Went outside naked?
NOT GUILTY (Back to that horrible image thing).

13. Been on stage?
GUILTY

14. Been on stage naked or close to it?
NOT GUILTY (BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Yeah, right!!).

15. Been in a parade?
GUILTY

16. Been in a school play?
GUILTY (My line - "Wow! It's so clean in here you could perform an appendectomy!" It was a stellar performance).

17. Drank beer?
GUILTY

18. Gotten detention?
NOT GUILTY.

19. Been on a plane?
GUILTY (Lots!)

20. Been on a cruise?
NOT GUILTY (I hope to rectify this someday).

21. Broken into a house?
GUILTY (My own when my dad accidently threw the keys into the juniper bushes at night. He was throwing a snail and the keys went with it).

22. Gotten a tattoo?
NOT GUILTY

23. Gotten piercings?
GUILTY

24. Gotten into a fist fight?
NOT GUILTY (Though I did get into a verbal altercation with a drunken chick at an Eagles concert. Could have gone to fist-a-cuffs. Probably would have been bad for me as I'm a lover, not a fighter.).

25. Gotten into a shouting match?
GUILTY (see #24)

26. Swallowed sea/pool water?
GUILTY (Are you kidding? I grew up at the beach. I've probably swallowed enough ocean water for my own little sea.)

27. Spun yourself in circles to get dizzy on purpose?
GUILTY (Now I just tilt my head a certain way for self-induced vertigo. What a blast!)

28. Laughed so hard it hurt?
GUILTY (Especially while 9 months pregnant).

29. Tripped on your own feet?
GUILTY (Only once that I remember).

30. Cried yourself to sleep?
GUILTY

31. Cried in public?
GUILTY (HATE being vulnerable!)

32. Thrown up in public?
NOT GUILTY

33. Lied to your parents?
GUILTY (unless Mom or Dad are reading this. Then no. Never.)

34. Skipped class?
GUILTY

35. Cried so hard you threw up?
NOT GUILTY

Mused by Jenster :: 3:28 PM :: 13 People musing:

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New Font

So Terri - is this better??

Mused by Jenster :: 10:08 AM :: 7 People musing:

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Friday, October 13, 2006

My Reading Quandry

Reading Problems

It's very sad I am to report that as of today, October 13, I have only read 39 books since the first of the year. That is a paltry sum when you consider a couple years ago I would have easily been into triple digits by now. I started out pretty good last year, but when everything went awry in the spring my reading plummeted.

This decrease in reading drive is not helping my TBR pile any. I'm still interested in all those new books. I just don't have the desire to read them. (I wonder if they make a Viagra of sorts for this type of dysfunction.)

Books I've Recently Read

In September I read Viscount Vagabond and The Devil's Delilah, both Regencies by Loretta Chase. While I liked both stories, they weren't as good as her Carsington series. I was surprised, but not disappointed, that the intimacy level in these books never went past Warm.

Viscount Vagabond was entertaining. The hero, Max, had lived a time in America and his "lordly" speech was peppered with Americanisms ("ain't" comes to mind). The heroine, Catherine - or Cat, was running away from home before she was forced into a very unpleasant arranged marriage. Jack rescues her and takes her to his sister's house who happens to be married to Cat's distant cousin. Awfully convenient, doncha think? She's very bookish and ends up being courted by Max's friend, Jack Langdon - also very bookish. Jack and Cat seem to suit, but the electricity sparks between Max and Cat. Of course, love emerges victorious and Max and Cat marry and live happily ever after.

***

The Devil's Delilah picks up where VV left off. With Jack Langdon retiring to his uncle's estate in the country after Max and Cat's wedding. He's a little heartbroken and resigned to being a bachelor forever. Holed up in an inn during a horrible storm, he has a "run in" with Delilah Desmond, the daughter of London society's most infamous rogue. Her father, "The Devil" had written his memoirs and she doesn't want them published. She is afraid they would ruin her. Her father has no intention of publishing them, either, but they get stolen and Jack helps Delilah and her father find them and get them back. There are a few little twists and turns - nothing that really keeps you wondering, but enough that it's fun. The couple falls in love and Jack goes from quiet bookworm Beta to a passionate something-resembling-an-Alpha to win the girl. Amanda had told me this was a better read than VV and I agree, though both were enjoyable.

***

The last book I completed was Where Dreams Begin by Lisa Kleypas. For years I've been hearing about how wonderful Derek and Sarah are, how great their book is, what a perfect hero he is, etc. I thought that was the book I was getting. I didn't bother reading the back blurb because it was a Lisa Kleypas book I didn't have and I was looking for that Dream book anyway. Turns out Derek and Sarah's book is Dreaming of You. Now I know what to look for.

That said, I enjoyed WDB. Zachary Bronson is a man who fought his way up from the London slums and is probably wealthier than any titled gentleman. Lady Holland Taylor is a perfect, genteel lady and a young widow with a small daughter. He hires Lady Holly to teach his mother, sister and himself how to behave in polite society. He has aspirations of making an aristocratic match for his sister and even for himself.

Zach falls hard for Holly. So much so that he abandons his original plan to seduce her. He respects her too much for that and he's nothing more than a guttersnipe, not fit to be in her company, let alone marry her. The attraction builds and she finally escapes until she realizes she is in love with him. I loved the scene where she comes back to him and tells him how she feels.

There are no real antagonists in this story. No evil uncle or malicious ex-lover, etc. The only things they really fight are society's strictures and people's snobby expectations.

I liked that Holly had been in love with her first husband (George) as opposed to the more common no-love-lost-when-the-first-guy-kicked-the-bucket. I also liked how Zach felt jealousy toward George and was angry with his deathbed request, but he came to respect the man and understood his motivation when all was said and done.

One other character in this book worth mentioning is Ravenhill, George's best friend. Without giving too much away, he proved to be a man of great character and very likeable. Lisa has said there may be a book for him in the future and I certainly hope so. I would love to see him find the right woman to inspire a grand passion.

Book I Am Reading

I am currently reading Sighs Matter by Marianne Stillings. This is a contemporary romantic suspense and follows Damsel in This Dress and Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evie. I don't typically read contemporaries, but these books are hysterical. Ms. Stillings must be the queen of the one-liners. I think she would be fun to hang out with.

The heroes of all three books (and the fourth to be released in February) are police detectives in Port Henry, Washington - near Seattle. As far as true suspense goes, they're not all that and have been fairly predictable. Even so, they're fun books. There is a scene in the first book - Betsy and Soldier are at the same conference and they have to do a writing exercise together. I laughed so hard I was crying.

Book I'm Going to Read

I believe I'm going to leave the land of romance for a little while after this book and read Eragon. I've been telling my son I would read it for a couple years now and I need something different. Besides, I want to have read it before Eragon the movie comes out in December (WOO HOO!!!)

Mused by Jenster :: 8:49 AM :: 7 People musing:

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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Ah, Sweet Mystery of Life

I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume you all have seen Young Frankenstein. If you haven't, you should. It's one of the funniest movies ever and only gets better each time you watch it.

Remember the part when Madeline Kahn, delirious in the afterglow of her tryst with the monster, sings "Ah, Sweet Mystery of Life"? That's exactly how I feel at this very moment. (No! Not for the same reason!)

I am overcome with joy, bliss, ecstasy, rapture, euphoria and every other word that means the same thing. This feeling of complete gladness has only ever been superseded by a very few events in my life - my wedding day and the birth of my children.

"What," you may ask, "is worth this fervor?" I'll tell you! Not only do we now have a Target, an A.C. Moore craft shop and a grocery store near by, we have a --

**let me savor this moment and wipe away that rogue tear of utter emotion - *sniff***

-- A Starbucks! Yes. You read it correctly. We now have a Starbucks within a couple miles of the house. So with this wondrous occasion in mind I have posted the words to the song, with a few little changes:

Ah! Sweet mystery of life, at last I've found thee;
Ah! I know at last the secret of it all;
All the longing, striving, seeking, waiting, yearning,
The burning hopes, the joys and idle tears that fall!

For 'tis a Starbucks' White Chocolate Mocha, and a Starbucks' White Chocolate Mocha alone, the world is seeking;
And it's a Starbucks' White Chocolate Mocha, and a Starbucks' White Chocolate Mocha alone, that can repay;
'Tis the answer, 'tis the end and all of living,
For it is a Starbucks' White Chocolate Mocha alone that rules for aye!


To celebrate the grand opening I am currently drinking a -- you guessed it --
White Chocolate Mocha. Venti. With real cream. And double whip on top. Accompanied by their very delicious original coffee cake. Good thing I decided to stop dieting!

Mused by Jenster :: 1:36 PM :: 6 People musing:

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Monday, October 09, 2006

Just Playing Around

As you can see, I've been playing with my blog. Todd and Taylor are at the Eric Clapton concert, Katie's in bed and I could be doing something productive. Like reading. Instead I'm playing, pretending to know something about HTML and that sort of thing. I think I should probably stop before I really mess things up.

So what do you think? Most of you know what a coffee addict I am so I thought this background was appropriate. To be honest, though, it doesn't matter what anybody thinks. Changing the background around was a giant pain in my patootie and I won't be doing it again any time soon.

Mused by Jenster :: 11:02 PM :: 8 People musing:

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Sunday, October 08, 2006

It's Always Something

Car Troubles

Friday as I was running to the grocery store in preparation for our camping trip the van started making funny noises. I use the term "funny" very loosely. It sounded as though something was dragging on the asphalt as I drove. So I pulled into a gas station parking lot and called Todd. Turns out we need a new transmission.

This shouldn't be upsetting. We've had the car since 1998 and it has nearly 120,000 miles on it. Yes, Bessie's been a very dependable van for us. And as I sat there waiting for Todd to rescue me I kept thanking God that she waited until this week to die on me. Beth and I put about 800 miles on the van just the week before. We've decided to go ahead and have the transmission fixed. While I would love to get a new car, I love not having a car payment even more. Maybe next year...

Camping

After the van fiasco, we loaded up the trailer, hooked it up and drove up to Delaware Water Gap in the Poconos. My gosh, that's gorgeous country! The leaves are really starting to pop, though it's not peak foliage quite yet. Maybe another week or two.

Late yesterday morning we left the campground and drove up to Bushkill Falls, better known as the Niagara of Pennsylvania. They have several different hiking trails, the longest of which is about 2 miles and views all eight of the beautiful waterfalls. Aren't they pretty? Oh wait. I forgot. I didn't get any pictures like I had planned. And do you know why? They wanted nine-bloomin'-dollars A PERSON for the privilege of walking on their trails! Thirty-six dollars for a family of four. An 11-year-old is considered an adult. Maybe if we hadn't had the van problem I would have felt more frivolous. But neither Todd nor I could bring ourselves to pay that ridiculous sum of money just to hike around and see some water falling over rocks.

This has griped me all weekend. I could maybe see them charging some nominal amount - say a dollar or two - to help pay for upkeep. It's quite a tourist trap with shops and food and other amusements like mining and mini-golf so it isn't like they're not making any money anyway. But $9.00 for anyone over the age of 10? I don't think so!!

It was a beautiful day, though, and we enjoyed driving around the mountains. Unfortunately the weekend came to an end and we had to come home. Even less fortunate, I have to clean the camper tomorrow. I doubt we'll have it out again until the spring. Maybe if I save my money we can afford to go hiking by then.

Mused by Jenster :: 5:26 PM :: 4 People musing:

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Friday, October 06, 2006

New Illustration


For any of this to make sense you have to read my prior post, License to Gorge. Because 1)I'm trying to get out of work I have to do and 2) I had a lot of fun playing on Paint Shop, I created another illustration. This one shows what the results would be if the plastic surgeon were to use both my tummy and my rear.

Not only does it defy gravity, it defies logic, no??

Mused by Jenster :: 12:22 PM :: 9 People musing:

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License to Gorge

It's looking like sometime in the fairly near future I will be losing the nickname of Uniboob. Todd and I met with the surgical oncologist yesterday concerning a prophylactic right mastectomy and I see the plastic surgeon next week about the reconstruction.

Reconstruction has improved significantly over the years, even just since I had my original surgery 18 months ago. The beautiful thing about the particular procedure I'll be having (SIEA flap) is that I not only get a perky new set of ta-tas, I also get a tummy tuck AND it's all covered by insurance. The reason for the tummy tuck is because the plastic surgeon will actually take the tissue from my belly, tiny little vessels and all, and reattach them in the area of my chest. It's a very long procedure because of the microvascular intricacies.

So here's the thing. I could watch what I eat and exercise in an effort to lose the 30+ pounds I gained on chemo and the 15 pounds or so I would have liked to have lost before that. But then what would he have to work with? I'm not saying I'd like to look like Dolly Parton. I'm sure I'd be constantly losing my balance, running into walls, wondering if my shoes were tied, etc. But I have this fear that if I start losing weight the plastic surgeon will tell me, "You have enough for a AAA cup." Pfffttt!!! What would be the point??

So for purely medical reasons I have given myself license to eat what I want. I'll try not to gorge myself because I always end up miserable when I do that anyway. BUT, we are going camping this weekend and I will surely be eating cookies and smores and all the usual camping fare.

I still have the dilemma of my backside, though. This is what I'm afraid I'll look like afterwards:

Front half - great! Back half - not so great. I may just have to give up my dream of being confused with Carmen Electra next year.

Mused by Jenster :: 8:22 AM :: 6 People musing:

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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

My Theme Song

I stole this from Amanda (Bookwormom)




Your Theme Song is Beautiful Day by U2



"Sky falls, you feel like

It's a beautiful day

Don't let it get away"



You see the beauty in life, especially in ordinary everyday moments.

And if you're feeling down, even that seems a little beautiful too.

What's Your Theme Song?


So what's your theme song??

Mused by Jenster :: 8:12 PM :: 8 People musing:

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So much to post. So little time...

Todd told me this evening that I need a new post because he's getting bored reading the same thing over and over. This past week has given me many blogworthy subjects, but I'm afraid I don't have the time or the energy to give any of them the attention they deserve. They will have to wait until tomorrow.

I am currently reading Where Dreams Begin by Lisa Kleypas. I think I read a total of four pages this past week. It has nothing to do with the book itself. I'm enjoying it immensely. It's only because my very good friend from Arkansas, Beth, was here. While we didn't hit the ground running every morning - we drug ourselves sluggishly down the stairs every morning and headed straight for the coffee pot - we did start talking when we got up and didn't seem to stop until we went to bed at night. Not a lot of reading going on.

Anyway, here's the back blurb of the book:

Lisa Kleypas has always transported her readers to places where dreams really do come true. Now join her in Victorian London, a world of seemingly effortless beauty and grace that is governed by the strict rules of etiquette and behavior...where a single forbidden kiss can force a woman to choose between society's demands -- and her own heart's desire.

Zachary Bronson has built an empire of wealth and power -- now he needs a wife to help secure his position in society...and warm his bed in private. But not just any woman will do for a man whom all of London knows is not a gentleman. Then he unexpectedly swept Lady Holly Taylor into his arms for an unasked for -- but very alluring -- kiss, and suddenly he knew he had found a woman whose fierce passions matched his own.

Lady Holly Taylor was beautiful, generous, and, as a widow, destined to spend her life playing by society's rules, even when they went against her bolder instincts. But Zachary's kiss had aroused her, and though the shocking offer he made didn't include marriage, she was compelled to risk everything and follow him to the place where dreams begin.

It sounds very bawdy and improper, but it's really not. He hires her to teach his sister how to act like a lady and to polish his own manners. Of course they're going to fall in love and get married, etc. I'm hoping to actually finish it this weekend while we're camping.

The funny thing is that I meant to purchase and read Dreaming of You by the same author. Everybody who has read it says it's their favorite Kleypas book. Even Lisa herself says it's her favorite. When I saw Where Dreams Begin at the UBS I quickly snatched it up, only to find out it was the wrong Dream book. Oh well. It's still a good read.

Okay, Todd. How's this for a new post???

Mused by Jenster :: 7:19 PM :: 4 People musing:

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