Artichokes and Pink Martini

If you like artichokes, Pink Martini, knitting, then read on. If you are interested in the woes of losing the last 20 lbs or working in education, then read on. If you want to know what it's like to be an empty nester or to share that nest with to two dogs, then read on. If you want to know what the theme is for Monday night dinner, when the kayaks are going out, or who was at the Y at 5am, then read on. If none of this interests you, just hit the button that says "next blog", & read on.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween in da hood

It's the night of the year that all of the scareys come out. You must give them candy to make them go away or risk that their parents will leave them with you until next Halloween .... frightening!!! We had a parade of very well behaved ghouls and ghosts. Some said that they would share their candy with their parents (those tended to be very young & really have no choice in the matter), others, not so much. My favorite response was from a 7 year old princess who when asked if she would share her candy with dear old dad she laughed and said, "Noooooo" with a voice that accused me of asking the most ridiculous question ever!!!!!

Here are some of our favorites:

Derek the Monkey was first. He has very good monkey sound effects and was beside himself with glee when Mom let him unwrap one of his candies.

Natalie made the cutest Minnie, but poor Chase, at the tender age of 1, has already figured out the scam. Chase gets to walk the neighborhood wearing a silly costume so he can collect candy that his parents won't let him eat, just because his dad is too old to beg door to door himself.

Addy also a very cute lion was all done with the mane by the time she arrived at our house. She is hopeful that Mom & Dad will be looking the other way when she breaks into her stash.

Ellie is a classic witch. We are very partial to witches at our house and they usually get extra candy. Though her costume could benefit from some green accessories ... just a thought!

AHHHHHHHH! It's Eve and Eli. Wonder Woman and Batman. Super Heroes on Halloween and in real life. Last year Eli was Superman. He is very partial to the costumes that come with their own muscles. Look Dad, more muscles than you & Eli has never been to the Y at 6 am!

Friday, October 19, 2007


Where do all the cool Tacoma Schools staff & parents go on a Friday night???? To Fife, of course. Columbia Junior High (where I work) to be more precise ... for the Annual Dessert Auction. This is the Booster Club's Major Fundraiser to purchase items for the classroom. This year they have already committed $1500 for 2 document cameras. Which our generous table was able to raise. I believe we were also responsible for driving up the price on several things that we didn't take home, but made others pay more than their fair share. It was so much fun!!!! Thank you to Jenn & Dan & Paul & Jewel for leaving the comfort zone of Tacoma and helping us out! I must mention that Mr. Peter was also in attendance and a big contributor, but my batteries were out of juice when I tried to snag his picture seruptiously.

So Monday nighters, take heed .... DON'T BRING DESSERT! I have it totally covered. Waiting for you will be a Key Lime Pie, Starbucks Chocolate Cake, the most amazing Tiarimasu (I snagged this bad boy last year too), and some homemade chocolate peanut butter truffles. If you are busy & can't make it for dinner, PLEASE stop by for dessert. Just remember it was all for a very good cause.

One more time, now say it with me .... "I WILL NOT BRING DESSERT THIS MONDAY NIGHT!!!" good answer!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Weekend in Tuscany

It's been hectic since school started back up. I have been feeling like I need a break from the craziness so this weekend I ran away to Tuscany.

When I arrived at the villa, I was greeted by this fabulous fountain. She looks great for someone who must be at least 3000 years old.

The view out the window from behind the front desk was breathtaking. I knew that I would be spending the warm afternoons wandering through the neighboring vineyards.

The high ceilings, the marble floors, the beautiful antique furniture, it was like being in a dream world. Almost too good to be true.

The villa in Tuscany is absolutely palatial. Look at it bathed in the warm Tuscan sun.

Ok, it's not exactly Tuscany. Just a little bit east of Tuscany. It's Pasco, Washington. Sigh. I attended a conference there this past weekend. As you can tell, Best Western agrees with me that Pasco is just like Tuscany. And no long plane ride. It doesn't get any better than this.

Good bye water fountain friend.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Susan Werner

Sunday night was field trip night to Seattle's Triple Doorto see Famous Iowan Susan Werner. What a wonderful venue! What a fabulous show!!! Our local field trippers included Dan, Jenn, Lisa & Kim.

Mary is a close, personal friend of the star of the show. They grew up together in good ol' Manchester, Iowa. Mitch acted as the local promoter of this event and got all of us there. Thank you Mitch! Special guests for the night are Mary's parents: Sue & Dean(Herb), who drove out from Manchester, Iowa last week. I am not kidding, really, they actually drove! Now you may be wondering why Mary's dad has 2 names. Well, I think I have unraveled that mystery. Mary's dad's real name is "Dean" & that's what Sue calls him. But Mary calls him "Herb". It's so obvious, I don't know why I didn't figure it out earlier. 2 words: Witness Protection. See, Mary grew up only knowing the name "Herb" that the feds gave him. While, Sue hasn't ever gotten used to that name and still calls him "Dean", the name of the man that she married, 47 years ago. Shhhhhhh, don't tell anybody, I am guessing that it's a secret.

Below is a picture of Susan and her band. Sorry about the dark images, I was taking pix on the nighttime setting, without the flash. Clearly, I really need to read the user's manual of this camera.

Susan Werner - 'The Gospel Truth'

What's better than looking a my dopey pictures is to get a little Susan in action .... Enjoy!!!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Lights, Camera ...... Action

Tonight the curtain went up on the Tacoma Film Festival. First to be shown (a very prestigious spot) was our own "South 5" and the world premiere of it's long awaited sequel "South 5: True Grit". Before the lights went down and the film rolled, was the Pre-Festival Reception.

Look who's on the red carpet .... it's one of the big stars of the night. Now what is his name .... Is it Ashton Kucher (you know he is from Iowa)???? Nahhhh, not young enough. Could it be Paul Newman??? Nahhhhh, not old enough. Maybe it's Kevin Costner??? Nahhhhh, he left town in August. It's that Mitch Robinson. So hard to recognize him without his Fez.

It was sooooo exciting, being able to hob nob with the film makers. We spotted Director (and film genius) Bryan Johnson, chatting with another of the film's big stars .... Jason Gordon, known to his fans world wide as Mr. Chihuligan.

What a spread! Tiffany, Mitch and Kyle Price, the brave but thoughtful Zoo Keeper (his performance was reminiscant of Henry Fonda at the height of his career) really know how to live it up. This must be just how it is in Hollywood.

The crowd is all tingly before the lights are dimmed. You could feel the electricity in the air. We all felt sorry for the other film of the evening, "Let Other's Suffer", they had such a tough act to follow. And they were from Spokane .... need I say more.

It was the night for the history books. It was the kind of event were in mere weeks 1000s of people will claim to have been here on this night. But we were lucky enough to have really been there and were lucky enough to record this rare moment when the Director (Bryan), Cast (All of the other guys), and Crew (that would be Bryan, again) were reunited for this photo op. You don't recognize the man with his back to the camera? That's Jerry, he was the all important voice of Mr. Big.

Sorry we missed you Eli. Maybe when they showcase these films at Cannes, it won't be past your bedtime.