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Friday, August 28, 2009

Fabulous Find For A Friday------Pets

Yes, I am BACK with everyone's favorite Friday Find!!

Ok, so only about two of you even missed it, but whateveh....I am trying to get back on track again. (yay!)

I grew up with pets. Every place I lived I had a menagerie of pets----from dogs, to cats, to pigs (yes, I said pigs) to fish, to calves, to horses, to guinea pigs....well, you get the picture. I even managed to sneak several cats and dogs in with my last husband, who was allergic to cats and some dogs. My kids and I tried EVERYTHING to keep animals, and if I saw a stray, I was usually picking it up.

It got to the point that my kids would yell, "Mom, don't look----there really ISN'T a stray dog over there! Just keep on driving!" I just wanted to take care of all of them.

Fast forward to now.

I have two little doggies, Mignon and Musette. They are Yorkiepoos, and very small, so it feels like I ALWAYS have puppies. They go with me on errands a lot and are very nice, snuggly dogs, are litter boxed trained, and seem to be the most perfect of dogs!

Except for one small problem.

They tend to have accidents once in a while. For no reason at all, they will pee just outside their litter box or drop small turds as if they are leaving a trail for someone to follow them---much like Hansel and Gretel did as they went deep into the forest----got the picture, right? least they are small turds. So, I can't complain TOO much.

Our next pet is a great cat, Marmelade. My hubby found her in the middle of the freeway in LA and stopped to get her----she had cuts, was covered with fleas, and had her little ribs sticking out, but we loved her instantly. She is very lovable----and has always put up with my kids dressing her up or carrying her around. She is the perfect cat, really.

Except for one small problem.

She has started peeing in the corners of the house on occasion. And of course, she only pees where there is carpet. There is no rhyme or reason for it, and she doesn't do it often, about once or twice a year or so, but its a BOOGER to get the smell out! (Do you realize how much of that chemical smell remover that I have poured in the carpet? Did I mention that I have an ACUTE sense of smell and am anal about any bad smells in my house?)

Then, almost two years ago, Santa's elves left a crate in front of the house with a kitten in it for Aydan. He had wanted a kitten badly for the last year or so, and was overjoyed! His name is Shadow and he is an amazing cat, so easy going and loves to give you kisses when you pick him up----so gentle and sweet. He is such a perfect cat in every way.

Except for one problem.

He has the BIGGEST, STINKIEST turds that you have ever seen from a cat! And he doesn't believe in covering them up. No, sirree, not this cat.
It is the worst thing ever to walk into the front door and.....WHAM! blasted with this smell----the most foul putrid poopy smell that you have ever smelled. It knocks you over! And the litter box is clear up on the second floor in the bathroom, so you can imagine how powerful these turds are, as the smell wafts down to the front door.

Yes, my pets are precious.......but they come with a price.

Mignon and Musette---aren't they adorable in their tea party dresses?
(They wore them for my son's girlfriends birthday tea party.)

Marmelade----not skinny anymore----just enjoying life.

Shadow----in one of his favorite poses----catching a cat nap.

I sometimes daydream and think of the times when all I had to do was change a measly ole' diaper a few times a day.

Now...........I am surrounded with pee and poop----but it doesn't come encapsulated this time around. I find myself cleaning up one bowel mess after another, and rant all the time about how annoying these pets are! Its like potty training all over again, only you don't get any "Pull-ups" this time.

But then again, when they come over and jump into my lap and settle in for a snooze, or they look up at me with those adorable little eyes, or run around with my young son, as he laughs and laughs at their antics.

Well.....then.......I wouldn't have it any other way.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

My Trip To Brazil And I Promise I Won't Post About Any More Celebrity Trips----Even Though There Were At Least Two More...

I don't want to go on and on about my trip to Brazil.

I just got back from our last band trip for the summer today----to NY, and I am officially exhausted. I don't think that I had re-couped from Brazil, and the sets we did in NY were long and we went late.........and.......well........I guess I have to admit that I am not as young as I used to be.... (Oh, stop laughing----you will feel that way someday too!)

So I am saving you having to read about every minute of the Brazil trip. I am just going to post my observations and then some pictures and call it a day. Better all around for everyone, right?

So, here are the observations that I made:

1. If you are going to Brazil, go someplace closer to the northern tip, as it takes about 14 hours to get to Sao Paulo from Boston. (Ok, so we got a layover to change planes in Houston, but trust me, it didn't help much)

2. Only go on a flight that is NOT sold out! We went down and had lots space to spread out and sleep, as we took red-eyes both ways, but on the way back----it was almost full, and man, was my butt numb.

3. Take the helicopter, if it is offered, to the hotel, as the traffic is horrendous-----you take your life into your hands as the driver swerves and races through motorcyles, small cars,------all the while driving only about 5 inches away from each other. I swear the lanes are RIGHT NEXT TO EACH OTHER. There are no laws-----at least none that I noticed.

4. Do not be a pedestrian in Sao Paulo. They do not recognize them and WILL run you down!

5. Get settled into your amazing room and take a nap before you go to rehearsal----you will feel much better.

6. DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES EAT ANY PIECE OF FRUIT OR DRINK THE WATER! I can not emphasize this enough. I even hesitated to eat some watermelon and fresh papaya, but since they are cut from INSIDE the fruit, I decided to trust it. AND I kept my Imodium AD ready.

7. Take Imodium AD with you. If you read my last post on Brazil, you KNOW what I mean.
Nuff said.

8. Enjoy the beautiful hotel view, but don't look down. There may just be a homeless person living right up next to the hotel-----cardboard house and all.

9. When you are up on the rooftop swimming area, do not be annoyed when you look across the street and see a man peeing on top of the building next door. Just take a picture of it.

10. Do walk around to the shops in the area around the hotel, and try to find something for your hubby and young son, but then feel frustrated, as you can't find anything like tee-shirts or hats with Brazil or Sao Paulo on them. Nope. Not a one. I did find some with the Yankees and LA, as well as Disneyland on them. Hmmmmmm.
Be confused.

11. Also, when you walk around to the various exclusive shops, don't be annoyed when the person working there keeps taking out the article that you touch----just to look at, mind you----to show it to you and speak in Porteguese to you about it. Just smile and nod and
move on. Eventually you just leave, as they keep following you, and you find it disconcerting.

12. Try to ignore the fact that the city kind of smells. A mixture of B.O., cheap perfume/aftershave, and I believe-----a bit of urine.

13. Don't freak out on the night of the gig, when your van doesn't arrive on time and you sit in the hotel lobby for two hours waiting, then decide to forego sound check, as there isn't enough time to get to the venue and back again to get ready.

14. Enjoy working in a gorgeous place with truly wealthy people. I mean, these people make most of the rich look poor.....but they are the nicest people ever. So great to work for, and so gracious. What a beautiful wedding and all the best to Adolfo and Flavia. The gig was an amazing one!

15. Don't worry about staying at the party after the gig until 4:00 a.m., because we DON'T HAVE TO GET UP EARLY!

16. Ignore the perfume and after shave in Brazil, is strong and kind of spicy----hard to describe, but ignore the fact that you smell like it after everyone gives you a hug.

17. Do enjoy sleeping in the next day, then watch movies subtitled in Portuguese, as you get ready-----then have a really nice buffet lunch before you go to the airport.

18. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER agree to have your Brazilian saxophone player come with you to the airport when he has had too much to drink. It makes for a LOOOOOONNNNNNGGGG trip to the airport and that, along with the traffic scariness, makes your stomach feel a bit queasy.

19. Try to concentrate when the customs man is speaking to you with a HUGE accent and you don't understand what the heck he is saying! Stressful!

20. Don't forget to use up your "reals"----Brazilian money----as you probably will be left with too much when you arrive home----then what the heck do you do with it? So, to do this, find a few things for your family in the airport. (As they have NOTHING in the hotel or at the shops----remember?) Just be happy that you found something, even though it cost more than you planned. But don't plan on refrigerator magnets for friends, as they don't have any of those. Nope......not a one.

At the airport---Danny and Steve have their passports around their necks----so they
don't get lost.

Then Steve is joined by Dan, the keyboard player.

Here I am----looking rather fresh in my new yellow earrings----remember them---
from Brimfield----I love them!

Even Rick (Rod) is in good spirits----"Oh, yeah..."

The sunrise over Brazil from the plane.....
....and the reflection of the "sweet light" from the sunrise on my face....
after a few hours sleep.

The lobby of our hotel.....

....and my room----with a rotating TV....

....and a living room area.

Rehearsal with Cookie, the Tina Turner tribute act from Vegas----here is Steve
on the drums----and part of Danny on bass.

Dan on keys and Jeff on lead guitar-----getting ready to rehearse.

There's Cookie and Rick-----looking incognito but sounding like the REAL DEAL!

Adolfo with his bride to be, Flavia, and his son with some friends. They came
to listen to rehearsal.

The next day, out on the rooftop of the hotel----look at that view of the city!

Then take a look down to the street----can you see how close the cars drive?

And back around to see the pool with Steve and Rick in the background.

Steve is enjoying the sun with the city for a backdrop.

Danny, Rick and Steve are soaking up the sun.....

....while I find the foilage on the other side of the pool.....

....but then my eye is caught by THIS-----YES-----its the man peeing on the roof.
Uh huh. Classic.

Here is the transformation of Cookie to Tina Turner----pretty amazing, huh?

And here is the girl power---but I look major pale compared to her!

Flavia----the bride----so gorgeous---dancing at the party.

And Steve is in heaven, surrounded by beautiful Brazilian women!

Its 4:30 in the morning, and I still have my "hoochie" eye makeup on----
but looking a bit tired, huh?

After a great nights sleep, a bit of walking around, packing and some good food,
I am looking out my hotel window.....

......then look down and see an amazing church.

You can see the sun is starting to go down, as I take a last shot in my room
before we leave for the airport.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention. There are tons of beautiful women in Brazil----all wearing the tightest pants that I have ever seen----and trust me, they are NATURALLY gorgeous....they don't rely on makeup, like I have to.

But the bottom line on Brazil. Its great to see and experience another country and how they live, but..........I was way excited to walk back into the United States. I was doing a bit of a jig, even though I had had only 2 hours of sleep.

I really do appreciate living here. Yes, I do.

Adolfo mentioned that he wanted to have us back at Christmastime. Would I love to go?
Well, I might feel more comfortable each time I go back, and the people are gracious and warm, so yes, I guess that I wouldn't mind doing it again.

But I may take some Fabreze with me this time.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Post When I Touch Upon My Celebrity Trip #3...Or Is It #4----I Am Starting To Lose Track

As you all know, I have been traveling every week and/or weekend all summer. I have had some crazy trips, as you have read, and the trip to Pennyslvania and Long Island was one such a trip---as we drove once again in our bus----with me squished in the back seat between a keyboard stand and a monitor. I was the only one that could sit back there, as I am the skinniest one in the band. (Well---Steve and Rick might be skinnier---but they are guys and their bone structures are a bit bigger----at least that's what I tell myself.)

The trip went pretty well----once again driving through the night, and getting no sleep, but arriving in enough time to take a nap, and recoup for the gig. Then it was back in the bus and on to Long Island, New York. I was really excited for this gig, as I had an amazing blogger friend that thought that she was going to be able to make it! I was es. tac. tic!

I have to do a bit of an ADHD moment here, as I mention that I had another blogger come to one of my gigs in Connecticut a few weeks before. I have tried several times to do blogger "bashes" where bloggers in my New England area come and meet somewhere-----Brimfield---and then the gig in Conn.-----ring any bells?

But alas, alack, no one came to Brimfield and only ONE fantastic, phenomonal, amazing blogger came to the gig in Conn.!! I got to meet RAE and her darling children, as she greeted me backstage----and of course, I had forgotten my camera----so Steve, the drummer took a pic of us---sent it to my phone----and two days later, my phone died.....

Yes, this is a true story.
(Sigh...) Still, you should check out her great blog----she is so bubbly and fun and seems like an amazing mother! Thanks so much, Rae, for making my DAY!!

Ok, so now back to my story. The highlight of this particular trip (remember the one to PA and LI?) was definitely the visit from my good blogger friend, CADANCE. She came to the Smithtown outdoor gig, and endured the heat and humidity to stay and watch the show. She is GORGEOUS, by the way---and her hubby is a hunk and a half. The guys in the band were drooling over her, and they all wanted to meet her, of course! She brought me some beautiful flowers and remembered that I was addicted to bubble gum----and brought me a tin of bubble gum!! How superb is that?

She is not only beautiful, but she is so giving, gracious, writes practically every day, has a great wit, and is a terrific mother! You DEFINITELY have to check out her blog!

Here is Steve and Dan in front of him----in the bus-----again.... the spectacular theatre where the venue was. This is the stage....

....and this is the view from the stage! to be performing at this great theatre.

The immense dressing room....

....with even individual dressing rooms for MOI!

The morning after----on the bus.....again.

New York

At the Smithtown Library park----when we were setting up for sound check....

....and after the show----with the gorgeous Cadance!

And here we all are----Cadance, Me, Rick and her hubby, S. (she kept crouching down, cause she was so tall compared to us----I only wear flats on stage as I dance like a maniac, so
I appear quite short.)

The bee-you-tee-full flowers and adorable tin filled with bubble gum that
Cadance gave me----isn't she the sweetest thing ever?

Well----that was it.

The next one is going to be about "take" on Brazil.

I promise.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Off To Brazil!

I may or may not be leaving out of the country today.

I may or may not be sitting in the airport writing this.

I may or may not be going to Brazil to sing for a wedding.

I may or may not have internet service for five days. (AAAACCCCKKKKKK!!!)

I definitely won't be taking Viagra this time......curious? Check it out.

But just in case I may be.......thought you might want to know.

But you can be sure that I will be telling all-----once I return.

Yeah----you will have to read the life of a celebrity........Part 4. (Yawn)

Sunday, August 09, 2009

A Surprise Visit

While I was driving to New York, I got a phone call from a number that I didn't recognize. After a few minutes, the phone bleeped that there was a voice message, so I listened to the message. It was from my youngest daughter, Maryn. She was calling from her boyfriends phone and wanted me to call her!

My heart sang.

I hardly ever get to talk to her, since she moved to Ohio, and a phone call from her was nothing short of a miracle!

So, I quickly called the number back-----to hear what was going on.

She asked me where I was.

"Driving to New York for a gig," I replied-----to which she said----"Oh, noooooo!"

"What?" I said.

"I'm on my way to Boston---to surprise you!" she replied.

My heart sank.

She was going to be in Boston just one day and night, as she had a show there, then her band was going on to Brooklyn. She didn't want to tell me as she wanted to walk into the house and surprise me.

I almost started crying just thinking about it.

So, after talking to her for a bit, I got off the phone and called my hubby, Bret. I told him the story and asked if he could connect with her and maybe take her to dinner or something----just see how she was and just.....well.......give her the hug that I wouldn't be able to give her.

After I arrived at the resort where our band was playing, I tried to call, but there wasn't very good cell service. After sound check, though-----I tried again.......and I got through!
Maryn answered and I talked to her again----as she and my hubby were walking after eating out. They sounded like they were having a good time, and it made me feel happy that she was close to my hubby, so that she and her boyfriend could hang out together with he and Aydan.

But I wasn't there-----and yes, it hurt.

I had been thinking about her a lot lately. I generally think of my children every day. I wonder what they are doing right at that moment and whether they are making good decisions.
I guess that when they grow up and move away, it never changes-----you still worry about them and want to protect them.

I was changing purses about a week ago, as the handle of my old one started breaking, so I had to move things from one purse to another. I came across a small letter that Maryn had given me when she was about 12. She had given me the letter, along with a little bear, to hug when she wasn't there.

Do you remember how I told you that Maryn is the best "hugger" ever? Well, she is----she envelopes you in her embrace and you just want to hang on forever....

But the letter was so adorable. It is why I carry it in my purse.....still. She told me how much she loved me and how much she will always be there for me to hug----whenever I needed it.

And.....yes......well.......I always cry when I read it, because I don't get to have her here when I want that hug.

Its so hard to describe the feelings that you have when your children leave.

I heard this song by Ingrid Michaelson about three days ago, and I had to post the lyrics. I tried to find it on You Tube, but they didn't have a video of it, but I found a copy of it on the internet----at so you can hear it-----just scroll down to Highway and give a listen-----it is amazing, because it describes my feelings about my little Maryn.


On a highway along the Atlantic I'm rifling through these last 17 years
The radio waxes romantic. It's lullabies fill our eyes with tears

We don't say a word
There's nothing to say that hasn't been heard
And how you've grown my little bird
I'm regretting letting you fly

6 pounds and 7 ounces. A ball of bones and flesh and tears were you
Now your hands, your tiny pink hands, grew larger than my hands ever grew

We don't say a word
There's nothing to say that hasn't been heard
And how you've grown my little bird
I'm regretting letting you fly
I'm regretting letting you fly
I'm regretting letting you fly

On a highway. On a highway.

Maryn with her boyfriend, and then a cute look for the camera----sporting her

new blonde look!

Yes, my little bird, I'm definitely regretting letting you fly....

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Oh Yes, There Is Another Shawn

A few months ago, I got a comment from a Shawn.

What? I thought. Another Shawn? A woman? Wow!

So, I went on over to her blog to check it out.

Of course, she is gorgeous, talented, has a hunky hubby and a great family AND did I mention that she is a dog lover? Well, yes she is! As well as many other animals..... She also has some great BFF's that she spends time with sometimes-----and yes, I am jealous, yes I am.

So, I immediately started following her blog-----and a few weeks ago, I got another comment telling me that she had an award for me.

"For lil' ole me? (this said in a southern accent, of course----I am constantly going in and out of dialects.) Wal, I am shu-ah flattahed." (And no, Shawn, this is not because someone thought that you sounded like you had an accent----trust me----you didn't!)

Here it is!
(although I don't really understand what that means in small lettering...hmm)

And that's not all!! No, this amazing woman is doing Swaps! I, of course, participated in a swap before and got some lovely things----of which I forgot to post about, but I PROMISE that I would NEVER do that again! So----if you are interested in this fun swap----or just want to go by and read some of her fantastic posts. Go on over to Seriously and check it out!

I have found a lot of great gals in this blogging world.....its like opening up a whole new world of pen pals, right?

As for the award-----I have chosen to share this award with some other amazing bloggers-----I believe that the rule is 15, but since I am brain dead these days, I am going to go with 10. Sorry if you have already gotten it, but you are all so creative and super-duper bloggers, that its fine to get it again, right?

1. Melissa at Thats What She Said----its her birthday tomorrow and she thinks that she looks old---but she runs and bikes and does marathons---(and I'm jealous) and is gorgeous----Just sayin, M-Cat.

2. Mignon at This Little Miggy Stayed Home---she just moved into the coolest historic house, and has a cute family, does amazing crafts for her Etsy site and I love her taste in furniture!

3. Anna See at An Inch of Gray----she is quite funny, with some intimate details as well as great ideas for crafting, decorating, and just getting through your life!

4. Carma from Carma Sez----what a fun person, with her cheeseballs, her juggling and having exciting activities with her son!

5. Jennie at Beehive and Birds Nest----she was one of the first bloggers that I came across---from someone elses site. She is clever, beautiful, a great mother, and she lives in Texas----with her adorable children!

6. Dapper Kid at....well, Dapper Kid! He is a young fashionista that has a heart of gold, and loves sunsets and romantic evenings, and his writing is fantastic----and he lives in London, to boot!

7. Lynne at Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life----she was one of the early bloggers that I adored---with her wit and recipes and fun insight into the world----we even had lunch together once and she is delightful!

8. Christy at A Lil Welsh Rarebit---she has a baby with the most enormous blue eyes---so adorable---is working on doing her first triathalon----more than I could do, for sure, and seems like the sweetest person!

9. Mrs. Organic at Positively Organic---she is wanting to change the name of her blog and is willing to give away a quilt or two to some lucky person that comes up with a better than best name! (she didn't like mine---I Read Because I Dream, I Cook Because I Taste, I Sew Because I Feel Naked---go figure)

10. Cadance at Our Life In Perfect Cadence----she is truly gorgeous---inside and out! She just came to a gig of mine last week, (of which I am going to tell all about next week!) and she and her hunky hubby are the coolest ever. I am looking forward to when we can get together again---this time, hopefully, to spend some more time together!

There you have it, my lovelies. Go visit and see why I am STILL reading these blogs!

Sunday, August 02, 2009

The Life Of A Celebrity---Part Two

Once again I have been lax in writing posts. I guess with the theatre camps that I am doing and the traveling with the band, I have gotten a bit out of sorts with my normal schedule.

Hang on, what was that last one about traveling?

Oh, yes......I am sure that you forget that I am a celebrity........of sorts.

So you remember one of my most memorable touches with celebrity last year? You don't?
Well, go on over and read about it.

This time was a trip to Long Island, NY, to do a show in a country club. And since we had to leave right after that show and drive all the way up to the Maine-Canadian border for a gig on Friday night, the next night, the agent rented a luxury vehicle.

You know the type.

A big bus with our name plastered on it, and places for us to sleep as we were driven all night long. Well, we are celebrities, you know.

So here you have it. A bit small, least it runs.

Here's Jeff, looking fresh, ready for the long first part of our trip....(notice the band itinerary
on the window----only the best for our band)

Oh, and its so nice to see our bass player, Danny, smiling and excited to be driving all night!

And here we are----Steve, our drummer, and I, feeling so special to be squished into a seat right in front of the drum kit.

We did the show on Long Island, after driving about 5 1/2 hours----a private party at a country club----got a great hamburger out of it----and some pay, of course-----then we loaded everything in the, and continued on to Maine, where we had a gig the next night.

No problem, right? We had a driver and all-----or rather, we had six drivers.....but the town in Maine was actually on the Canadian border and did I mention that we had a show the next night?

Danny....the morning after the ride.....

.....and Jeff, taking it easy.

Then there is Mark, the sax player and moi, looking extremely thrashed after little sleep
but trying to keep it positive like a good celebrity does! I just hope that the paparazzi doesn't
get ahold of this shot!

Our fearless leader, Rick, finally takes a few ZZZZ's.

And then we arrived.....and set up for the sound check....barely alive.

Steve, trying to keep a smile on his face.

The arena where we are playing.....from the stage.....

....and the stage from the arena.

Our amazing what ever star hotel.....or motel.

When you are a celebrity, you always get the best accommodations.....such as matching bed spread and wallpaper strips....or is it matching the wall hangings?.....Hmmm.....hard to decide.
Well, who cares when a nap was so needed!

Right before I got my costume on and went on stage in the star dressing room.

And packing up to get back to the motel after the show.

So, after a night of sleep.....well, about five hours of it, we were up and away to our next destination-----about halfway down the state of a campground type facility. Its only the best gigs for this band!

The stage area.....

....and the snack bar area.

Here is Steve and Rick in the "Star" trailer.....

.....and Jeff and I right before we went on stage.

Our cabin in the woods that we all got to share......I, are thinking, right?

I mean, what could be more fun than sharing a cabin with six guys who fart, burp and tell lewd
stories----while using profanity at every turn-----I bet you are all jealous!
This was my bed----took several Valerian and slept pretty well with my white noise machine on!

And of course, Rick had to find a way to "air" out his costumes, so he hung them up to dry----isn't that what you use your deer antlers for?

In front of the huge rock fireplace with my buddy Steve, before we turned in for the night. was back home again the next day. I am not even sure how many miles that we had traveled, but we were loopy, tired, me battling laryngitis, but safe and sound.

Stay tuned for the celebrity tour, part Three......its got another bus, more exotic places, and even a special blogging fan!

You DON'T want to miss it!

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