Friday, January 29, 2010

A Blog Makeover Contest!!!

I know that many of you who stalk me through this blog have blogs of your own. I know you also have other blogs you stalk. Well, one of my favorite blogs to stalk is

I have to admit that I began stalking Amanda years ago when we were both very active members of I have always adored her personal style with everything from scrapbooking and decorating to clothing. And recently she inspired me for a completely different reason....weight loss!

And right now she is having a contest!! It's super easy with a nice, big prize at the end: a professional blog makeover!! IT'S TRUE!!

Go check her out. You will simply love her for more reasons than a giveaway. I promise!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Dogs and their dreams

While in a deep sleep the other night, I was rudely awakened by Patches. She was whining and carrying on like something was wrong. As I looked down over the side of the bed I realized she was alseep.

Sound asleep. Like I had just been. *sigh*

So I spent the next hour and a half trying to go back to sleep. My brain would not turn off as I lay there thinking about what dogs possibly dream about that gets them that worked up physically. Patches had been whining mixed with a muffled bark while simultaneously trying to "run" with her front feet. Here's a list of possibilities I came up with before I finally fell asleep again:

Running to greet me as I get home from work
Fending off the other animals while trying to eat
Chasing squirrels
Chasing the post man
Chasing the cat
Chasing her tail
Chasing me up and down the stairs
Chasing cars

I'm thinking since Patches really doesn't chase ANYTHING that I am pretty safe assuming it is one of the first two. And considering I have a zoo living in my house I'm going to stick with number 2. It's the most logical.

And we all know I'm all about logic, people.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A different kind of Fiji Post.....number 3.5

I need to start this post by explaining that I'm not the kind of person who minds having their picture taken. It doesn't bother me. I'm not always thrilled with the outcome, but I generally don't get too caught up in pictures of myself. They are meant to capture moments in time. If I happened to have a zit at that moment in time, so be it. I will admit that if it distracts from the rest of whatever is going on I will photoshop it out. Like if I crossed my eyes on purpose I don't want the zit to take away from that. But mostly I just don't care.

And if you are one of those people who just hates to be in front of the lens (*cough-cough-clare-cough-cough*) that's okay, too. My mom was like that for years. She got over it when I got my camera in elementary school and shoved it in her face 7,342 times a year. At least I think she got over it. I have about 7,127 "in the moment" pictures of her...and about 12 really good ones. So that proves something, right? Yes. That I'm annoying with my camera.

So I figure if I'm going to be taking pictures of everyone I better not mind having MY picture taken. And I really don't.

For the most part.

Here is a small sampling of various pictures that were taken of me in 2009.

They aren't too bad. There is most likely a little something in each one that I have picked apart. But for the most part they are okay. For me. I mean if we are honest we will all agree that I'm no model.

And then there are THESE pictures. A little more "capturing the moment" than the first set. Sometimes you just don't get any warning a picture is about to be taken. I could live if none of these pictures had ever been taken. I don't love them. There's no need to explain why I don't love them.


But every once in a while a picture is taken of me that I feel just needs to be burned. It doesn't happen often, even with the pictures in that last group. They all have meaning. Each one takes me back to the moment they happened and either make me sigh with happy memories or make me laugh hysterically. I love those emotions.

This pictures invokes none of those emotions in me. Except the emotion that would like to burn it.


My husband took this picture of me asleep on the plane ride home from Los Angeles to Sacramento at the end of our vacation. I was tired, people! Isn't he sweet. And funny.

Ha. Ha.

But my mom laughed and laughed when she saw this. No doubt because it was like a small payback for the 7,127 pictures I have taken of her that she wants to burn. And to see my mom laugh and laugh? Well, that made me sigh with happiness.

So I'll keep it. And share it. And you can laugh and laugh, too. At my expense.

You are welcome.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

And the winner is.....

(drumroll please)

CLARE!! Congratulations! Clare doesn't need to email me so that I can send her the Gift Certificate. I already know where to find her. =)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Fiji.....part tolu*

*that's "three" in Fijian

I mentioned on my last post that we had many adventures while in Fiji. On one particular day we hired a taxi and did several things all in one day. Our driver's name was Chetty. This is Chetty and our taxi:


He was super nice and talked about Fijian history and culture for most of our trip. He pulled off the road when we so desired for fruits and vegetables (or pictures of goats...but that's another post)I warned him ahead of time that we would be taking A LOT of pictures of things that he may find inconsequential. Or stupid. He just smiled so we figured he would be cool to hang with for a day. And when he just smiled after we took this picture we knew we were in good hands.


Please notice how tan we all are. We worked hard to get that way.

Our first stop of the day was the Momi Guns. Months before we even left for Fiji my husband started researching interesting places to go and this topped his personal list of "must do" thiings while on our vacation. Troy is a bit of a WWII history freak. Think me and Wizard of Oz. Except his freakish obsession actually has substance. (Did I just say that???) So Chetty drove us down the highway, through many farm lands, across some valley and up some hills. It took approximately 1 hour to get there. And when we finally did arrive there was nobody there to greet us. Not one single soul to take our money so we could go in and have a look around.

I felt like the Griswolds and we had just arrived at Wally World. Troy was extremely disappointed, but we did at least get a few pictures before we continued on our way.

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Our next stop was the Kula Eco Park. It was something that we had picked up a brochure for at the resort. It looked interesting and fun so why not? We are all about interesting and fun. When you first enter the park, the guides give a little history about the park and let you hold the snakes and iguanas. Why not? We are all about holding the snakes and iguanas.

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the park itself was absolutely beautiful. It was just a wonderful little tropical rain forest with many birds, flowers and Fiji history all rolled in to one lovely little place. The birds were exquisite:

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The tropical rainforest provided for some BEAUTIFUL flowers as well:

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It really was just a beautiful place. And we are all about beautiful places...and taking pictures of us in beautiful places!


After we left the Eco park we were all in agreement that we needed food. We stopped and had some wonderful Curry dishes, treated Chetty to lunch, and used this restroom before we loaded back in the taxi:


I hovered. And that's all I have to say about THAT.

Our next stop on this trip was the Coral Coast. It was a quick stop where we played in the ocean and just took in the scenery. Of course we were accosted by a local wanting to know if we would like to take a horse ride on the beach. We politely declined. But remember how we are all about taking pictures of us in beautiful places?


Our last stop on this journey was a roadside fruit and vegetable stand where for some reason I could not pick green beans out of the pile of green vegetables piled all over the table. As my husband hollered at me over and over again "GREEN BEANS!" I just couldn't get it. Green beans look different in Fiji. Yeah. That's it. Just look at this look of "Wha....??" as my husband hollers at me. I was clueless. It is not the first time in my life this has happened.


The rest of the ride back to the resort was uneventful. It was a lovely day and we all agreed the Eco Park was the big hit. Well, Momi Guns would have been for Troy but we've already discussed that disappointment. As it turns out it was a VERY good thing we went on our little excursion when we did. We had tossed around the idea of doing it later in the week.

But a storm came.

(to be continued...)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Ummm...about that "contest"

It's no longer a contest when YOUR DAUGHTER is the only one to answer all the questions correctly. Even though I commend Patti for lurking through my blog for over an hour, she did not get my favorite toy right. And there weren't really enough entries for me to feel right about giving it to Lindsay. I think it was a slow week because of the holiday. Yeah. That's it.

My daughter cannot win. It's just not right in the world of blog contests.

So anybody who responds to this post with ANYTHING...even just a "hello"....will be entered to win the $25 gift certificate at the end of the week. The real winner will draw a name from all the comments on Sunday and the winner will be announced on Monday.

But don't forget to sign your comment with a name. Otherwise I will have no way of knowing who "annonymous" is or how to contact them to redeem their prize. And my daughter will have no way of stalking you to let you know how sad she is that her mother is being mean and will not let her have the prize.

I'm kidding about that last part.

Sort of.


Fiji....Part Deux

We had many adventures while in Fiji, but my husband wins the award for providing us the most...ummm...."what-in-the-heck-are-we-doing" adventure.

On our first trip in to the town of Nadi (pronounced "Nan-dee") we were approached by some dude on a street corner. Okay, it wasn't the FIRST person to approach us. We were accosted by nearly every store front on the main drag. The Fijians like to push their goods on the tourists. Before we left on vacation, a co-worker actually warned me of this behavior in the bigger towns....and to NEVER mention your name because they will create some handicraft personalized and you are obligated to buy it at that point.

I said, "Go ahead and make them TRY to spell my name correctly." because, well, nobody ever gets it right the first time.

So we had been warned. I relayed this information to my husband. But Troy is a likes-to-talk-to-strangers kind of dude. He is overly friendly to the kind of people that I would pass and tightly hold my purse/personal belongings VERY close. Yeah. He's all kinds of interesting to travel with.Never a dull moment.

Stranger Danger is just not in his vocabulary.

And the strang(er) man dude approached Troy first. Because Troy is I'm sure Troy just started chatting it up with him FIRST. He convinced my husband that HE had the BEST handmade handicrafts EV.ER. And so Troy bit. He bit hard. And he waved for us to follow him and the strang(er) man dude.

So we did. With trepidation. Down THIS alley:


That's Tiffiny with the "Where-the-heck-is-he-taking-us" look. How was I supposed to know? I was in the back of the pack. Scared. Wanting to kill my husband who was far ahead of all of us, excited and anxious to get to wherever the strang(er) man dude was taking us.

Down the alley, up a flight of stairs on the back side of the building and in to this tiny gallery. That's where we landed. As I started looking around I didn't notice anything bigger or more special about this stuff than the 15 other places we had passed on the main drag. Except that it was small. And I felt like maybe we would not return to life as we had once known it.

I think they sensed this apprehension from all of they came in for the kill.

"Have you been to a Kava Ceremony yet?"

Nope. Suddenly 3 other men appeared. And so it began. The final manipulation of my husband. He was deemed "chief" for the purposes of the ceremony and I knew right then we were all in trouble. His head was larger than life. So it went on....and we had our first official Kava ceremony (not our last) in a dirty back alley handicraft gallery.


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See that dude carving that beautiful Kava bowl? Yeah. I caved. I bought that exact bowl that was carved in front of us during our Kava Ceremony.

I suppose Troy isn't the only sucker.

(to be continued.....)
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