Thursday, November 6, 2008

Gotta take the highs with the lows

I still find that I am elated at the election of Barack Obama as our new President. I see pictures of his acceptance speech in Chicago, and it just brings tears to my eyes. I read an article on Huffington Post and it validated exactly what I was thinking that night. . . he seemed grateful, tired, humble and sad all while maintaining his steadfastness in his belief that we, the American people, are what makes this country great. And he will lead us as a nation to set high standards for ourselves and for the global community. As Oprah said, "Hope won!" And I am VERY hopeful now.

I am also elated that right here in Colorado and in South Dakota voters did not pass amendments which would strip away women's rights, and doctors' rights to take care of them. The implications of how far reaching the law would have been taken had they passed was frightening, indeed. So, good for you Colorado and South Dakota!

And yet, I am holding all of this in the same space of feeling very disappointed at the outcome of the elections in other states. Specifically, I am talking about Florida, Arkansas and California, of all places. Once again, people are being scared into believing that if "the gays" were to be treated like equals (i.e. humans) and given the same constitutional rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, that somehow society will fall apart and before you know it, we might as well let people marry their dogs! Try to follow that logic! 

I like the line of thinking that the Boss said in her blog, that (and I'm rephrasing a bit) in Arkansas, these children who are basically being tossed away like garbage and being thrown into an already overwhelmed Foster Care system are too precious to let unmarried couples adopt. WTF?! Hello?! The F-ing President-elect was raised by a SINGLE MOTHER!!! He went to Harvard F-ing University, no less! Tell me, all you intellectual pro-lifers out there. . . if you had your way and abortions were illegal, who would take care of THOSE unwanted children? Hmmm???

OK (stepping off of my soap box now) Basically, what I wanted to say is that we have had a few setbacks in this election, but overall we are headed in the right direction. Obama won by a landslide, both the House and the Senate are majority Democrat and I think the American people know there is a long road ahead for recovery. Let's not lose sight of the Hope of this campaign. I'm going to link you to Tammy Etheridge's blog. . . she is an amazing writer, and has summarized her feelings better than I can. 

Here's looking to the future.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

History!

Amazing! That's how I feel about Obama's win over McCain. I am filled with hope. He seems to me to be a man of courage, strength, persistence, humor, integrity, hard work, compassion, and commitment to making the USA a better place for ALL. There is something to be said for this man, this campaign, to have created such interest in the political process again. I heard that his campaign helped register over 4 million NEW voters. Amazing!!

As CNN (or was it MSNBC?) projected that Obama was the winner, I sat in front of the TV crying. Then we went out into the street whooping and hollering (just as we did the first time the Broncos won the SuperBowl.) 

The first black man to be the President.  His strong, educated wife, and his two young daughters (and their new puppy) will bring new life into the White House. I am in awe. Just 4 years ago we were only beginning to know this man, and now he is going to be our next President!?!!! Wow!

I'm not even writing that well. . . I'm just so thrilled. . . and hopeful.

Please, please do not disappoint us President Obama. Let's bring thinking, dignity and reasoning back to the White House and leave the ego for those other guys. Let's truly reinstate the USA as a bright spot in the world, helping others and fighting the GOOD fight. Let's save the planet and ALL her inhabitants. I have faith in your abilities now. Please don't get tainted by those good ol' boys, or get pushed around and bullied. We have a tough road ahead, but I do BELIEVE that you will lead us in a better direction than the last 8 years.

Barack is in the HOUSE!!!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I just love Obama-RALLY I do!!

What a glorious day it was! It was a brisk fall morning that quickly warmed into a beautiful fall day here in Denver. And to top it all off. . . Barack Obama was in town speaking at a rally in Denver. I got myself up, rode the light rail into downtown Denver and joined over 100,000 of my closest friends to cheer on Barack Obama, as well as other Democratic candidates. I didn't have my camera with me, but I was able to get a couple of good shots from my cell phone. 
I couldn't see the podium where he spoke, but if you look in the first picture, it was located just beyond the American flag. That flag, by the way, was GIGANTIC. The picture really doesn't do it justice.

The news station estimated the crowd to be at about 100,000. It was really amazing to be in the middle of this huge crowd. The crowd was very mellow and very excited to be there. Amazingly I ran into a few friends, too. 

We listened to Representative Diana DeGette, Senator Ken Salazar, Mayor John Hickenlooper, and Congressman Mark Udall, among others. They all spoke of change, getting out the vote, working together and electing Barack Obama for President! Woo-hoo!

When Obama spoke, I felt even more hopeful and excited. He didn't say anything "new," really, from any of his other speeches or debates I've seen. It was just "cool" to be at this huge event, listening to him speak, unedited, interjecting humor, and just being himself. (OK, himself at a big rally on the campaign trail!) :)  Anyway, it felt reassuring listening to someone (who is much smarter than I) who has some good, solid ideas for how to move forward on some important issues. . . big and small. 

O-BA-MA!! O-BA-MA!! O-BA-MA!!


Monday, October 20, 2008

Supporting the GIRLS

Since Roni brought it up. . . let me just go there! ;-) Basically, I've always been well-endowed. So, when I was pregnant and reading all the books and magazines, they kept talking about how wonderful it would be when the baby was born and your boob increased in size. 

GREAT! That's JUST what I need! 

They kept saying to enjoy the voluptuousness (gag me!) while it lasted because soon, after you lose the baby weight from breast-feeding (HA!), your cup size may actually shrink (please, oh, please!) Let me tell you, I was certainly looking forward to THAT part. 

Wrong! Just the opposite happened.

So, think about this. . . before pregnancy, size DD. Pretty good size, right? Still manageable. After pregnancy, G's!! Are you kidding me? I didn't even know they made REAL boobs that big! So, that explains my frustration/dilemma these days. I cannot find a bra that fits me and feels comfortable. I was an underwire gal before the baby (who is in Kindergarten now!), but with all this extra weight on my chest (OK, it's all over my body. . . baby weight +10-15 lbs) the underwires dig into my ribcage or they poke under my arms. Yes you read that right, they bow out and actually poke me in the arm (as in my biceps, not my armpits). These girls are so big and cumbersome, I actually have to wear a bra to bed to keep them from flopping around when I toss & turn. No lie.

So, Roni posts this contest to win a new sports bra (see link below), and I gotta tell ya (OK, now I sound like Sarah Palin-yikes!) I'm a little skeptical that this will help me! I'm always hopeful, but I have yet to find a truly comfortable, everyday bra for these big, heavy girls. And, sports bras? Anything faster than a brisk walk, and I'm getting black eyes from all the bouncing. I have to run with one or both of my arms holding the girls in place. (Stop laughing. I DO run every so often! I have a 5 year-old, remember?!) 

If I were any good with sewing & fabrics, etc. I could invent a really good, supportive bra for big gals (kinda like the Spanx gal!) I really don't care about cleavage. I just want to wear a plain shirt and not have to worry about showing a "double bubble," or illustrating my very large uniboob with my incompetent bra. And don't get me started on showing nipples! ACK! There has GOT to be somebody out there who can do a better job!

HELP!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Free Game

Just so you "all" know. . . there is a free, fun, ADDICTING (fair warning!) game you can play at the bottom of this page. I couldn't figure out how to get it closer to the top without half of the playing "screen" being cut off. . . maybe Roni could tell me how to do it. (So glad you read my blog the other day!)  :)

Have fun!

Hot Nanny

There are those who you meet in your life who you find attractive from afar, those you can look at objectively and think, Hmmm. Nice skin, nice smile, great hair, nice body. . . etc. . . . just an observation about their general good looks. WELL, there is a difference between, that "hmmm" feeling and that "take your breath away" feeling. 

A nanny of a family from my classroom evokes emotions in me that I haven't felt in a while. When I see her, I literally stop breathing for a moment and gasp. She is so HOT! Just thinking about her right now, I'm starting to breathe hard. I find myself totally infatuated with her. She has a great smile, she is physically attractive, she has great eyes, she is great with the kids she nannys, and she is totally easy to talk to. (Plus she smells good.) Now, I am a married woman, and I have no intention of straying. But, DAMN, if this woman were to move in to kiss me, I do not think I could stop myself! Holy shit!

Word on the "street" has it that she is gay (BONUS!!!), so I am totally hoping to run into her one day at the bar and strike up a conversation, and maybe a dance. (I hope, hope, HOPE, she can two-step!) OMG, she is so beautiful! I wish I had a picture of her to post (obsess much?!) Interestingly, too, she is a black woman. I have never been attracted to black women in general (now black men, that is another story!) so this is new for me. 

Sadly, she is no longer nannying for that family, so I haven't seen her in 3 weeks. (sigh) 

My co-workers totally know of my infatuation with her, and on her last day I was trying to prolong the conversation with her. They were giving me such a hard time. ;-)

WHAT?!!! I just want to be her friend so I can look at her some more!

Lust. . . it can be a wonderful thing. . . 

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Procrastination

Yes, I am a procrastinator. I have good intentions, and then "other" things get in the way. Usually it goes something like this: 

I should update my blog. OK. First I'll check my email, clean some of the junk out and then I'll update my blog. Oooh, look at this email. A link to see what Brangelina's twin babies look like? Oooh, while I'm on this site, I should look to see if there are any pictures of Melissa and Tammy's twins. Oh, yeah. Ellen & Portia just got married. . . what about those paparazzi who were flying overhead. I wonder if those pictures are anywhere online? Holy shit, what is Palin up to now? I need to see what Palin is really all about. Oh, wait, I know someone who lives in Alaska. I should email her to see what she really knows about Palin. Hmmm, now where is her email? (Spacing out on her name, right now, too. . .) Oh wait, she has a myspace page. I'll just login to my myspace and send her a message that way. Now where is she. . . huh? She doesn't have an account anymore? That's weird. Oh, look. Tara has a new picture up. Let's see what's new in her life. Oh, new email. Facebook? WOW! Look at all these people on Facebook. OMG, I went to college with a Jack Nxxxxx! I wonder if it's the same guy? I think he was gay. . . Let me see if I can gather anything from his Facebook friends. OK 90% of his friends on Facebook are men (with hot looking pictures, I might add.) Could that confirm that he is gay? He also has the comedian Ant listed in his friends. Ant is SO gay! Would a straight man have Ant in his friends (along with all the hot men?) I so think Jack is gay. . . I should work on my budget. OK, after I check Laura's blog. . . after Rodney's blog. . . after Rosie's blog. . . after Tammy's blog. . . after Roni's blog. . . after Lynn's blog. . . I should just see if there are any of those awesome, late night, get 'em while they are hot tickets to Hawaii for Christmas. Maybe we should open up a lesbian B&B on the Big Island. . . family friendly, of course! I'll just do a quick google search on opening up a B&B. Oooh, Amazon has lots of books about it. I'll check the reviews of just a couple and see if I should buy one. . . 

Man, it is late. I need to get to bed. I'll update my blog tomorrow. . .

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Listen to the locals!

I certainly learned my lesson!!

Let me back up a bit. Upon arriving in St Louis, my good friend from college, Laura, picked me up at the airport. She got us some amazing seats for the Cards/Cubs game that afternoon. Here was the view from our seats, which, I might add, were CUSHIONED, in the shade with a nice breeze coming up from the field, and access to an all you can eat buffet and bar! Woo-hoo! It's good to have friends!

We certainly have aged well, haven't we?!

Later that evening Doris (my best friend/roommate in college) met up with us and we all went to a local bar where they put on a drag show with both drag Kings and Queens. Another friend from college is a drag king—Clitt Black. I'm sure you've heard of him! Fun show, and quite different than any drag show I've seen with boys dressed as girls and girls dressed as boys. 

So, because my digital camera has an annoying delay in taking pictures, here is the most telling picture (read foreshadowing). This is the empty glass of my first alcoholic drink of the night. 

It certainly wasn't my last, however. Remember, this is Mommy's weekend away! She thought she was 18. . . um, I mean, 21 again! The problem with drinking, for me, is that I don't have a drink that I "usually" drink, because I drink so seldom. Beer usually makes me gag, and I can't always count on the margaritas tasting any good. So, I usually try one foofy drink, pay too much money for it, and then I'm done. Plus, I just hate wasting the next day feeling crappy.

After the drag show we all met up at another local hangout. It was a nice little place. . . a men's bar, but totally comfortable for our little group. Doris (who is my best friend in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD*) and I played several songs on the jukebox and talked. So much fun! Here is a picture of me, Doris and "H" (otherwise known as Ellen or Clitt). 
Something hit me as soon as we walked into this place—I want a Cosmo! So, Laura bought me a Cosmo, and man was it good! Strong, smooth, sweet. . . just the way I like my women! ;) 
So, you probably know where that first Cosmo led me. Yep, right to another Cosmo. And before I even finished my second, I wanted a third. Now, here's where it pays to listen to the locals. Laura warned me not to get the third drink from this place. She knows this establishment and how they mix the drinks. 

Well, no one was going to tell ME what to do! I had money in my pocket. I marched right over to the bar and bought myself another Cosmo! So THERE!

The rest of the night is a bit fuzzy. . . My friends told me that we left the bar shortly after I ordered and gulped the third Cosmo. Doris and H went their respective ways. I was staying with Laura and her partner. When we got back to Laura's house, she baked a pizza to help settle our tummies for the morning. I wanted to drink more (!) and her partner graciously made me a weak Screwdriver (even though I really wanted a Mojito!) :) 

Here is the last picture of me before it got really ugly.

Remember how I said I usually don't like to drink a lot because the whole next day is a waste? Well, I proved myself right time after time the next day. I finally was able to sit up for any length of time at about 3pm the next day. I finally got in the shower at about 5pm (because Doris made me!). And finally was able to keep some real food down at about 7pm.

Lesson learned: Listen to the Locals!!!


*They also tell me I was talking A LOT. . . at least they said I was funny/entertaining. I guess I was demanding more alcohol (I wanted to switch to Mojitos after my 3 Cosmos. Yep, alcohol really DOES make you stupid!); saying things like, "I should NOT be driving!" (which, of course, I wasn't); showing everyone who stepped in front of me a picture of Aidan; talking about how big my "girls" are since having a baby; and telling Laura over and over and OVER again how great of a person Doris is, and how she is my best friend in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD!

Love to fly

I love to fly. The first time I remember flying I was about 5 years old and I was going to Iowa to visit my dad's parents, Grandpa Chuck & Grandma Gwen, and my dad's youngest sister (my aunt) Meighan (who is only 2 years older than me). What a great summer that was! (Or was it only a week?) 

Ever since then I have loved flying. And I still love sitting in the window seat with my nose pressed right up against the window. (That is, when my son isn't traveling with me, since HE always gets the window seat now. Hmpf!) It is amazing and thrilling to watch the world whiz by as we race down the runway and to feel that huge machine start to lift off the ground. It gives me chills every time. When I travel I keep my camera handy just in case there are some interesting cloud formations, or if we fly right over the city and I can get some good aerial shots. 

Here I was on my way from Kansas City (where my sister lives) to St. Louis for a "mommy's weekend away" with some college friends. It was a beautiful sunny day with just enough clouds to make the scenery interesting.

Then we began our approach into St. Louis and I saw the great Mississippi River.
Two seconds later we flew over areas where the river had flooded quite a bit. 


It is very clear to me from just 15,000 ft that no matter what we, humans, do to control Mother Nature, she has the ultimate control. I am in awe.







Thursday, June 19, 2008

More Brandi

Aaaah, Red Rocks. That magical place. So, here are a few more pics of Brandi at Red Rocks. It was still daylight when she was performing, so the lighting is natural. I absolutely LOVE it. I don't know how the performers feel about being able to actually see the audience. 

Did I say already that I absolutely LOVE Red Rocks? This is THE summer to go see concerts at Red Rocks, too. So many good acts coming to Red Rocks: Brandi (and Sheryl Crow), the Police and Elvis Costello, Jack Johnson, the True Colors Tour, Lyle Lovett, Steely Dan, John Mellencamp, James Taylor, Yonder Mountain String Band with Keller Williams, Willie Nelson!!, G Love and Special Sauce, Blues Traveler, the Fray (!), not to mention the Australian Bee Gees! What I wouldn't give for unlimited discretionary income.

Anyway, enjoy the pics of Brandi. (Oh, and one of her and Sheryl.) 


Here is when Brandi joined Sheryl on stage for "If It Makes You Happy" (I'll post more videos in a later blog.)


Nothing like seeing two powerful women ROCK on stage. It's giving me goosebumps just thinking about it! I should've been a musician!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Brandi at Red Rocks!

Here is a little video I took of Brandi Carlile who performed at Red Rocks Amphitheatre last week. My camera will only allow me to shoot about 1 1/2 minutes before the battery freaks out (it is the video feature on my digital still camera). So here is a taste of the woman I love. . . er, I mean the woman whose MUSIC I love! 


videoThis was a test to see if the video feature works well. I have a couple more videos: one of Brandi, and a couple of Sheryl Crow, and one of Brandi singing with Sheryl. Oh, this IS fun!!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Ugh. . . how to get motivated?

Who the F*** pasted my face onto that hideous body? Ugh! Is that what I REALLY look like? I certainly don't feel like it. HELP ME!! (My hair was kinda cute, though, wasn't it?)  :)


In January (no, not the 1st) I got all psyched about losing weight. I went to a new meeting at Weight Watchers, a new leader I had never been to before, looking for inspiration. Well, one of the first things he (yes, HE. . . a male leader. Now THAT's different, right?) did was to ask everyone how they did that week. I mean, point blank, "What did you do this week?" I was shocked back into getting on purpose with weight loss. I didn't want to be embarrassed the next week by gaining! So, I gave up pop for 2 solid weeks, and wrote down everything I ate & drank. I did really well for a few weeks and had lost almost 12 lbs. (and under a certain benchmark number). I was feeling like, Yeah, baby! I'm on a roll! This time I'm really gonna do it FOR GOOD!

Well, this happened and that happened, and I'm still at a net loss of about 10 lbs, which is good. . . BUT, I'm not feeling the same motivation that I was feeling at that first meeting in January. I keep going to the meetings, hoping. . . There is this one woman who has lost 86 lbs. She is so funny, outspoken, a total smart-ass, and I look forward to seeing her there. 

She hasn't been there the last 3 times I've been. . . I hope she is doing well. She is only about 10-15 lbs from where she wants to be, and she has talked about not wanting to quit (again) so close to her goal. Maybe that's why I keep going back to the meetings, to see her and how she's doing.

So, here is my latest pipe dream. A little background, first. This gal, Maribel, who was in my Montessori Training this past year, lost 40 lbs in 3 months doing Jenny Craig. WOW! She looked great! So, I start thinking OK. The summer is about 3 months long. . . If I do Jenny Craig just for the summer, I could get on a really, REALLY good roll in the weight loss game, I would have some structure for the summer food-wise, and (of course, the most FUN part of this fantasy) I would show up to work in August 40 lbs lighter and everyone would oooh and aaaah over my incredible accomplishment. Then I would "just" need to lose another 30 or so lbs to get to my goal. Plus, look at how cute Valerie Bertinelli looks now! 

Well, it all sounds good in theory. I did a little research, and it costs about $20 to join JC, plus the cost of food. So, I knew that going into it. . . JC is a program where you have to buy their food. The kicker is that you also have to buy fruits, vegetables, and milk products to go with the frozen meals. Plus, they want you to buy their "vitamins" and snack bars, too. Not to mention the fact that I would STILL have to make dinner for my family, and then eat my frozen dinner. Plus, we like to go out to eat on the weekends (which is part of my problem. . . I know, I know. . .)

Then, I did a little MORE research, looking for customer reviews about JC. There were some who were completely ecstatic about JC. It was the ones who were not satisfied that I was looking for. 

Pretty much what I found is (also) what I expected. The people who work there are not "members." In other words, they are not necessarily people who have weight issues, or are following/have followed the JC program. They are trained as sales people. (I had the SAME experience with LA Weight Loss people a couple of years ago.) 

I have an appointment to meet with a JC "counselor" tomorrow. I'm going to keep the appointment, just out of curiosity. But I am going to stick with my little WW group. They ROCK!! Plus, everyone who works there has lived the WW program. In fact, they have to be within a certain range of their goal weight in order to keep working there. Plus, I am learning how to cook differently, eat differently, and relate to food differently (I am learning slowly, but I AM learning!)

This time next year. . . I will be back to my comfortable weight. . . and I won't be lying on my driver's license anymore!!

Ahhh. See how I just talked myself back into myself?! (I'll find a skinny pic to motivate me, too.) 

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Hair

Let's talk about hair. . . my hair. I have LOTS of it. I have been growing it out for the last couple of years and finally it is pretty long. It is going past my shoulders (as you can see in the picture to the right). I can put it up, braid it, if I let it air dry it is pretty curly/wavy, or I finally figured out a system to blow dry it relatively straight.
Summer is coming, and with all this hair, it is going to be very HOT! So, what's a 41 year-old to do? Here are a few pictures of my hairstyles as of late. Each has its challenges for taking care of/styling. I just don't know which is the best style for the shape of my face and for my age. So, let's see here. . . in no particular order. . .

Which one do YOU think looks best? 


Starting a blog

OK, well, I've shared with a few people that I've started a blog. It is a bit nerve-wracking, since I may be sharing some of my inner-most thoughts. . . OK, maybe not my inner-MOST thoughts, but a bit intimidating nonetheless. It's like performing, I suppose. Putting myself out there for all to see/comment on. It's worth a shot, though, right? Get it out there. . . wherever "there" is. 

Hello? Is anyone out there? :)

I'm sure I'll get the hang of it soon. I already talk to myself all the time, now I'm putting the proverbial pen to paper. 

Any topics anyone wants my opinion on? After all, I AM a Burke by birth. . . you KNOW I have an opinion or two! Ha Ha!

I'll look through my pictures and see what strikes my fancy to write about next.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Let's give it a go. . .

OK, so I've been thinking this over for a while, so why not give it a go. I've been reading several blogs for quite a while now, and try to put myself in the author's place. I wonder. . . can I be that creative, eloquent, funny, inspiring, focused? Well, if nothing else, I will have good grammar and spelling, right? :) 

My main goal is to not bitch about everything. . . I tend to bitch a lot. Something I don't like about myself. . . I know it turns people off, yet, somehow, I find that that is the easiest way to connect with people. . . sad, isn't it?

So, thoughts for today? Memorial Day. . . our local realtor didn't come around this year and put American Flags by our mailboxes. So sad about that.

We had such a busy week last week with my graduation from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (whew, I got all my work turned in on time!! Yay, me!!) and my aunt from Hawaii and her daughters/my cousins with their kids coming into town (and staying with us), we didn't really have anything planned for this weekend. We did a whole lot of NOTHING! Of course, as I sit here now, on the eve of my return to work (but only 6 1/2 days of school left. YAY!) I'm feeling like I didn't get enough done.

Well, I guess the biggest accomplishment of the weekend was getting our planters in the front and back planted. Yay! Here are pictures of "my" front flower boxes. 




























Notice all the rainbow stuff hanging on our front porch and in the front window? 




OK, that was fun! I'll be posting LOTS of pictures! I love to take pics and I love to share pics.