Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!
May each of you have a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2010!

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Hatemongers to protest Lady Gaga Show in St. Louis next week

As first seen on Show Me No Hate

The Hatemongers--Westboro Baptist Church (www.godhatesfagsdotcom) in Topeka, Kansas are at it again, or at least threatening to protest another event. This time it's the sold out Lady Gaga concert in St. Louis next week. Last month this same group announced that they would be protesting outside of the Springfield (Illinois) Theatre Centre's live production of "The Laramie Project" . However, the group never showed up and there was no disruption. Will they really come to St. Louis?

KSDK - An outspoken pastor says he's coming to St. Louis to protest when pop star Lady Gaga comes to perform at the Fabulous Fox Theater. Lady Gaga is set to perform at the sold out show January 7th, and if you have tickets, expect to see plenty of police at the show.

Recently a heated cross-country online battle of words has ignited between fans of the eccentric music star and supporters of a minister that some say is "full of hate".

Reverend Fred Phelps of Topeka, Kansas' Westboro Baptist Church announced he and his supporters are coming to St. Louis to protest against Lady Gaga. Phelps describes Gaga as immoral and disagrees with her personal politics.

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay has been quoted online talking about the protest. His office along with the Fox Theater management say there will be plenty of security the night of the show.

Mayor Slay's position is that more people that want to come to St. Louis and spend money, the merrier. There is no word on how many people will come to support Reverend Phelps, but as of yesterday no city paperwork had been filed to legally hold the demonstration.

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Here's my daughter and me last night after hitting the 'after Christmas' sales at various stores in Springfield. As part of the holidays, I took her on a shopping spree. We had fun and got lots of good deals, especially at Target and Old Navy. Speaking of Old Navy, it looked a tornado had gone through that store. I have never in my life seen such a big mess in a store! I think maybe wild animals got in there and tore the place apart before we arrived! It was nice to buy stuff at 60% off though!

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Monday, December 28, 2009

I guess Tyra won't be the next Oprah

Tyra Banks has announced that this will be her last season

of "The Tyra Show." (NYTimes)

You will be missed, Tyra! I must admit I don't watch the show daily, but sometimes my dvr will tape it and a lot of times I find it pretty entertaining. It seems hard to believe her talk show has been on for five years. It took that long just get my attention!

With both Oprah and Tyra both ending their shows, I wish much success to Wendy Williams. I hope to see The Wendy Williams Show for a long time to come! And how YOU doin?!

Here's some memorable clips from The Tyra Show.

This next one is priceless!

And if you don't know who Wendy Williams is,
let me introduce you! Check out her show sometime!
I love her show and highly recommend it! ~ John

(See lots more Wendy videos on YouTube)!

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Usher Smells


The R&B singer says his new fragrance, VIP, will give men a confident boost.
(Associated Press News Video)

And now you TOO can smell like Usher!
The title probably says it all.
Personally, I think if a man is going to wear fragrances, less is more!
~ John

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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Snowy day on the farm

Today was a very cold and snowy day in central Illinois. I took all of these photos from inside, while looking out the windows. Here's a view peeking out one of my bedroom windows this morning facing north.

Here's a view from a living room window facing west with the bird feeders and barn in the background. The Dwarf Apple trees are visible along the drifted driveway between the birdfeeders and the barn.

Late this afternoon it was snowing very hard as seen in this photo looking out a window to the north.

Right before dark it stopped snowing and I caught these great photos of some English Sparrows at the bird feeders. Cardinals and other birds also use the feeders.

It was (and still is) bitter cold-- about 18 degrees Fahrenheit, but the birds didn't seem to mind. We got about four inches of snow from last night until today. With all the snow and heavy cloud cover I was unable to do much on the internet until tonight.

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

"Fuzz" at Christmas ~ photo by John

Hope all your Christmas wishes come true. Have a great holiday!

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Arctic Christmas at Festival of Trees

This tree was completely and utterly covered with decorations! Everything was very "icy." It even had icy Spanish Moss. This was a great tree that just glowed! Ctl + to enlarge view!

Somewhere I still have photos of two other neat trees. I hope I can find the one with the very unique topper I made. The top is shaped like a crown and sitting on that is one of those 100 light spheres! That bright tree topper about lit the whole ceiling up! It's worth posting, if I can find it in the next few days.

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More Trees over the years

"A Regal Christmas"
This tree of jewel tones was one of the tallest I ever made. Over time I learned how to extend the height with unusual tree tops. This was one of my favorite trees and had some very expensive ornaments and lights. I designed this tree "fit for a King." The yellowish gold glow at the bottom of the tree was a scroll that I made and lit and it had the lyrics of "We Three Kings." This photo is three pieces together, and I still think I missed some of the top! Ctrl + to enlarge the view--it's worth it!

"Frosted Holiday Extravaganza"
See what I mean about vague themes! It was hard to come up with a good theme, when my main concern was what materials would be used and available. This was one of the last trees I designed. Everything on it was frosted, including Magnolias, ferns, grapes, pears, apples, ivy, etc. Obviously red was the only other color I used. Again, not clickable, but worth enlarging!

Here's a close up of that same tree. It too was huge. I loved the red materials I used, which were some glistening pomegranates, sheer ribbon and I think some Cardinals.

This is a Poinsettia tree about twelve feet tall that I made with live Poinsettias and artificial snow from a fabric store. This I designed for the lobby one year, in addition to a themed tree.

This last tree was also one of my very favorites, but I do not remember the theme! I think the theme had the word 'nature' in it. It was also a towering tree by the addition of the topper. I used a lot of Pheasant feathers, some Pheasant feather covered ornaments, rope, pomegranates, pine cones, Poinsettias, etc. For this tree, I got very creative and made several large swags and placed them throughout the tree. Where ever you see feathers, they were part of a swag. This tree came together very quickly! I wanted this one, but I sure couldn't afford it! Enlarge to see the detail! Ctrl +

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Festival of Trees Year Two

As I said in a previous post, this Festival of Trees was somewhat low budget. Each tree designer was provided with the cheapest 6 1/2 foot artificial tree known to man! The photo below shows just how small the trees were. I was still in a learning phase and had not yet got creative enough to "wow" anybody (or so I thought).

I do not have a photo of my first year's tree, as it was a bird theme and simply was covered with birds and not much else. All the designer trees were sparse and disappointing. I tried in each successive year to inspire myself and hopefully others, so that we could pull off this event and be really proud of our trees.

Each year a theme would have to be chosen in the Fall for printing of the programs. It was always very difficult for me to come up with a theme. Most of the time my themes were very vague. For this tree I designed in the second annual Festival, my theme was "A Southwest Christmas." I had previously lived in Phoenix and I knew all about the Southwest. The first thing I did was sprayed the tree turquoise to make it stand out. I also made my own set of lights with miniature clay pots. I also used additional lights, since the little pots actually were like shades. Don't ask me what is on top of the tree besides an upside down clay pot LOL, because I do not remember!

The tree was covered with light green prickly pair cactus ornaments that I also made. I sprayed them with a polyurethane like spray to prevent getting stuck (it worked somewhat)! I also had quite a few dried red hot chili peppers on the tree. For a garland I used rope, braided roping and even some barbed wire. For color, there is obviously some silk flowers added.

The large clay pots of artificial cactus was also part of the themed tree and was donated by the store. You can see how different the tree looked in the two photos, depending on how brightly lit the room was.

Well let me tell you. I was pleasantly surprised at how popular this tree was! Corporate sponsors that donated a thousand dollars got to attend a gala and choose a tree to keep. Sometimes they would donate the tree back to the Festival for auction on the final day.

It just so happened that a couple from Arizona had recently moved here and owned a business, and were a corporate sponsor. They instantly fell in love with the cactus and the whole Southwestern theme and chose my tree.

Here's my little girl posing beside the tree for a photo. She had to be about five or six years old. In the lower photo, you can see the turquoise coloring of the tree. I don't know what the hot pink (probably some silk flowers) was on that tree, but Ashley's coat and hat sure does bring it out! By the way, isn't she just adorable! Poor child had to go to all those gala events each year, but she never complained. I think she was rather proud of my work, as I was of her well behaved manners in public.

Don't worry, I won't be posting trees from every year. Sometimes I didn't get a photo!

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Mmmm, Popcorn Trees

I'm taking a break from posting Christmas trees to share this recipe with you. If you make Gingerbread Houses and Villages, then these yummy treats go great with them! It also something the kids will enjoy! The photo on top came from the recipe book. The trees I made are pictured at the bottom of this post.

Sorry that I did not have time to type out this recipe to make it easier to read. I don't think it is clickable to enlarge, but you can hold down the Ctrl key and press + several times to enlarge it.

I made these a few years ago for a Christmas party and made sure everyone got to take one home. They all said they were too pretty to eat! I cannot remember what I made the large tree out of! I think I made a large cardboard cone and then covered it. Obviously that big one was not edible, but I wanted to make a table presentation out of them and so this is how mine turned out.

You can get very creative with your decorations of these popcorn trees! It's probably too late this year, but maybe next year you might want to give it a try. So print out the recipe!

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Over the Top Tree Topper

(Click to enlarge)

We used to live next to the flower shop, when my daughter Ashley was age three to ten. This is the top of a tree I decorated back in the mid eighties in our home. As you can see, living near the shop was handy. I was constantly borrowing plants, silk flowers, decorations, etc. I kinda went crazy with this Christmas tree as a practice for an annual fundraiser called the Festival of Trees hosted by a local hospice program. I envisioned fireworks coming out of the top, when I designed this.

I had participated the first two years in the Festival of Trees and none of the trees were very fancy for "designer trees," as they were called--not even my own. One thing I quickly learned. This was a very expensive charity function for my sponsor--our shop. Each year both the shop and me personally would spend more and more money on these trees. I designed trees for the event for about fifteen years, and it became a challenge to out do last year's tree. In the next few posts, I will show some of those trees.

This particular tree at home though was so pretty and I wish I had more photos of it. I do have several photos of a sleepy looking girl opening gifts under this tree on Christmas morning back in 1985 (guessing), but I won't embarrass her with them! Even little Ashley thought this tree was over the top! She had never seen anything like it. She thought it was bit much and too big, and hated flowers being on it. She was never that interested in flowers. But this tree was a good practice for the future Festival of Trees that we all would enjoy.

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The Black & White Angel Tree

This black and white angel themed tree is one I have put up ever since my grandchildren were born--that is, if I put a big tree up. It also has many homemade decorations that my daughter made throughout pre-school and elementary school. Well, obviously the tree has a little bit of everything--your typical home Christmas tree, but mostly angels.

This was the first year my grandchildren had spent Christmas with me, since they previously lived in Florida. The first time they saw the tree lit up, they would stare at it for hours and tug at decorations (the kids were more destructive than the cats)! But that's okay! PaPaw spoiled them good at every opportunity! Alex would tell everybody "PaPaw got lights, PaPaw got lights!" I had way too many lights on that tree LOL! Those were such good memories.

The first photo is clickable, in case you want a closer look! Click it! You know you want to! Yes, that is a black angel on top of the tree too. And if take a closer look, you will see dozens of angels, some with white robes on and some with gold robes. Half of all the angels are black and half of them are white.

I mixed the black and white angels, because my grandchildren are mixed, meaning they are biracial. They have a Caucasian mother and an African American father. They have a big family of both white folks and black folks.

I know you probably wouldn't believe that the kids are biracial by looking at them, but they are indeed. They look more white than black, but when the children look at people, they do not see a skin color. They see beyond that, and I am proud that they are accepted in both worlds. I'm also thankful that our families get along. The kids are very smart and very talented too!

This is a terrible picture of the kids, I know with those facial expressions! I couldn't resist posting it though, because Tommy the Cat is also in the photo! By the way, Tommy is still with us, but he is getting old! The children are eight and seven years old now and were about two and three in this photo.

The bottom photo is not clickable, but can be magnified by pressing Ctrl + a few times.

Since this photo, I have also put new curtains in that room and painted the walls the greyish marble look that has been seen on this blog before. It is actually three colors painted with a special double brush and a lot of touch ups by hand, and the trim is brilliant white. It looks so much better! The room is actually a large dining room, but we don't use it for dining. It's more like a sitting room with no television. It's my favorite room in the house. Nothing Christmasy in it this year though.

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Once again weather causes internet service problems

Oh no! My Internet connection is starting to let me down already and I have several photos to upload. Each time I try, I get this message:

Web Acceleration Client Error (506) - Suspected Recent Satellite Link Outage

The satellite link was operating properly up until the most recent web page request, but the last request could not be successfully sent across the satellite link to the Web Acceleration Server. Possible causes for this include recent changes in weather conditions or equipment problems in the Network Operations Center. Trying again at a later time may result in restored service due to either improvements in the weather conditions causing the service outage or rectification of a network problem in the Network Operations Center. If this problem persists, please contact your service provider for additional assistance.

I will try again later to upload some nice Christmas tree photos, especially after I just posted my "Li'l Tree." Charlie Brown's Christmas tree looked better than mine! If I don't get anything else posted, again Merry Christmas!

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My Christmas Mantel and Li'l Tree 2009

This year we have no grandchildren running around (that's their photos on the mantel) and nothing special planned, so I only did a minimal amount of decorating. I really wanted to add lights to the mantel, but that is so much work hiding the cords! The mantel is decorated with assorted artificial Christmas greenery, variegated holly, berries, winter twigs, ivy, silver and gold glass ornaments and "Let It Snow" themed candles.

The same basic items stay on the mantel all year and I just decorate it for the seasons.

Although it would make me a nervous wreck to have these candles lit for very long, I did want to see how they would photograph. I really needed electric Christmas lights for the best effect, but not enough hours in the day, not enough days in the month, etc!

Now please don't laugh at my Li'l Tree! I have done enormous and elaborately decorated trees in the past and almost embarrassed to show this one! You know it's a live houseplant LOL! But it is a Norfolk Island Pine and only about 18" tall.

I just love these trees, but the branches are not strong enough for decorations! A string of lights would look ridiculous on this kind of tree, as they would weight the branches down even more than my lightweight ornaments. It's a good thing (as Martha would say) for people with a limited amount of space or for people that just want a little tree that won't require a lot of effort.

Now that I have probably embarrassed my self, I suppose I will have to make some more posts of some prettier trees I have decorated at home and some that I have designed for our local Festival of Trees.

So that's it for now. Happy Holidays to you all, and Merry Christmas, you ho, I mean ho ho ho! Oh yeah, the first two photos should be clickable (in case you want a close up view). You can also press your Ctrl key and the plus sign a few times to magnify the pictures.

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, etc...

... in case I don't get another chance to wish you all that celebrate it, I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

As you probably know, most of the mid to eastern part of the U.S. is experiencing inclement weather. We are expected to get some snow and ice for Christmas, but mostly it has been rain, rain, rain so far! Two to three inches of rain has been predicted by tomorrow, and it has rained all day today and tonight.

Due to heavy clouds and constant rain today, tonight and tomorrow, my satellite Internet (at home) has not been working properly since my last post. Just when I think I am online, I will get booted with a "satellite outage--due to weather, blah, blah, blah" message. I am unable to upload photos to blogger during this kind of weather. I have even tried to email photos and then upload them at work, but large files just won't go through. It's been very frustrating! If you've read this blog before, then you probably think I'm beginning to sound like a broken record, when it comes to my Internet service at home! It's hard to explain, but if you have ever had dial up, it is like that--except slower during this weather!

Last night I tried on and off to upload until very late in the night (rather early morning). I woke up at 6:00 a.m. in the recliner with the notebook computer on my lap. If you didn't read my reply comments in the last post, I mentioned that I got sick from carpet cleaning fumes the other day on my day off! I probably wouldn't have gotten sick, if a certain someone hadn't mixed different kinds of cleaner to remove stains. I was sick that night and the next day too.

After running around shopping tonight I am at work using the computer! I did have a few photos that I wanted to post, and if the clouds thin out I will do that tomorrow. I hope you all have fun and enjoy the holidays!

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The largest city in the world approves gay marriage

We do: city approves gay marriage (Sidney Morning Herald)

One of these days, the U.S. will catch up with the civilized world...
I hope.
~ John

If you don't want to read the article,
here's a summary news video by The Associated Press:

Lawmakers in Mexico City have approved a bill legalizing same-sex marriage. The Mayor is expected to sign it, however, Mexican President Felipe Calderon has said he will challenge the bill in the courts. (Dec. 22)

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Santa Baby by RuPaul

Christmas and funny all in one! Enjoy!

"You was crazy as hell, when you came here, but you're in your right damn mind now!"
"I don't know karate, but I do know Ca-raazy!"

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Friday, December 18, 2009

It's Friday and I have the day off, WooHoo!

First of all, I wanna know, where's my Friday Potluck, Re-Re? Ahem! It's 2:30 p.m. already, HELLO! Just kidding, take your time. It is a very important part of Fridays though!

I can't seem to get much done today, but I am going to update this blog like crazy starting today.

I promised kenju at Imagine that I would post some photos of trees I have decorated in the past for our Festival of Trees and maybe some floral designs. The photos of her work on her blog are amazing! I hope that I won't be embarrassed with my work compared to her beautiful designs!

I promised Mean Mama at World and Family that I would post a photo of some edible Christmas trees that I used to make. She and her family are have been having so much fun with gingerbread houses that I think these would go well with that--something for the kids to do on a rainy snowy day!

So that means I have several photos to scan for the blog. And I will have to go through a ton of pictures. Fortunately, I am actually organized with my prints. Digital photos are another story and are scattered in several directories in several computers and cameras! One of these days I must get digitally organized!

Oh yeah, be sure and check out the three blogs I just mentioned! They are among my favorites!

I have four blog awards (long overdue) to accept, and have two in draft and want to finish all of them and post them all in a row! These are way past due! Sorry! I really do appreciate them, but it takes me forever to do them. I'm going to put in my comment instructions that I no longer am accepting the meme awards. Something else to do!

I have cleaning to do. After all, I do need to decorate at least a little, but not on top of dust! When I get some of these things accomplished, I will take some photos for the blog and share.

And now that I have 'put it out there' like a declaration, I am more likely to get these things done sooner, right? My blog has not had a lot of updates lately, but there should be a flurry of blog activity soon. This is already the fifth post today! I am on a roll. Now I better log out of Facebook and Blogger and get some things done!

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Thomson prison: Illinois attorney general rules Gov. Pat Quinn can sell Thomson prison

Thomson prison: Illinois attorney general rules Gov. Pat Quinn can sell Thomson prison --

Posted using ShareThis

You would think most people would say "not in my back yard." But according to CNN, most people in this little town (which is 190 miles north of where I live) are glad to have the Gitmo prisoners housed at the Thomson prison in hopes that it will spur the economy. The thing that bothers me is the lack of an airport in a town of that size (about 550). I really hope they build an airport next to the prison.

Speaking of airports and prisons, I instantly think of that 1997 movie "Con Air," which was not a true story. If you haven't seen it, it is a good movie that won some awards and was nominated for two Oscars. Nicholas Cage stars in this movie.

Anyway, I hope nothing like that movie happens in real life.

When I see such a sign, I think "well, duh!" Why not also have on the sign "lock your car doors!" I have seen these signs like the one above all over the state. (Illinois is full of prisons). I'm sure we'll all be seeing a lot more of these kinds of signs, at least I hope so. But at the same time, I just hate signs.
~ John

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If you don't like gay marriage...

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Washington DC mayor signs gay marriage bill

The Associated Press: DC mayor signs gay marriage bill

I love Washington, DC! It's one of my favorite places to visit, and I wouldn't mind living there. And now same sex marriage will now be legal in DC. It's nice to know that all the residents there will have the same legal right to marry their loved one--same sex or opposite sex.

Read the news link for the "but."

~ John

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Rihanna's new video "Hard"

UPDATE: 12/19/09 1:00 A.M. - Sorry to see the video got blocked. I got it from another blog and it is so good and the best quality I've ever seen. The video just premiered Wednesday, and it is such a good video. I used this new player, because all the versions on youTube were not very good. One had a blogname all across the screen and one was so wide screen that it had bigger upper and lower borders than the video itself. I will search YouTube again soon. Sorry if you wanted to see this here and weren't able to watch it.

Here's some of the lyrics (towards the end):
Where dem bloggers at?
Where dem bloggers at?
Where they at? Where they at? Where they at?

This video plays the "clean" version of the song.
In another tab or window, of course, Click here for all the lyrics, including Young Jeezy's rapping.

Turn your speakers up!
Click the play button on the bottom left of the player,
then the up arrow button (to the left of the OS) for full screen.

I love ths song and have a feeling it will be a big hit.
It is already getting heavy airplay.

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Houston voters elect first openly gay mayor

Houston Is Largest City to Elect Openly Gay Mayor -

On Saturday night, Houston, the country's fourth largest city (AP) elected it's first openly gay mayor. City Controller, Annise Parker defeated Gene Locke, a former city attorney.

Houston is now among the list of other major cities, such as Portland, Oregon, Cambridge, Massachussettes, and Providence, Rhode, Island that have chosen openly gay mayors. Click the link for photos and full story.

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Saturday, December 12, 2009

Today's top viral video - this kid's got talent!


In case you didn't know, "I'm Yours" was a big hit by Jason Mraz.

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Happy Hanukkah!

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Barbara Walters asks Lady GaGa about "Bluffin' with my muffin"

Last night Bawbwah WahWah interviewed Lady GaGa first, when she revealed her most fascinating people of 2009. It began with them entering the room propping each other up as they stumbled to their chairs. Maybe Lady GaGa could only see pitch darkness with her dark sunglasses on and Babs had to guide her. I guess we'll never know! In this interview the two share an uncanny resemblance! Barbara gets down right nosey and asks her if she has had sex with women! *awkward* You'll just have to watch the short interview to find out that answer!

I enjoyed the interview, but it was much too short.

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Monday, December 7, 2009

The verdict is in on the new cds (and other stuff)

When I wrote about so many good cds coming 0ut in one day, I had no idea which one would be my favorite. Until this past weekend's trip to St. Louis, I hadn't really listened to them all! Some of the songs I just sampled, but made sure I played all the new cds listed over the weekend. I know it's not every one's cup of tea (especially with the explicit lyrics), but my favorite new cd is Rihanna's "Rated X." I hadn't expected that outcome! They're all good and worth buying. When I went to buy them, the store was out of Lady GaGa's Fame Monster.

I had been wanting the New Moon soundtrack though, and so I bought it instead, not knowing when I would get Fame Monster. But I ended up getting Lady GaGa's the next day for $8.00 at Walmart--somewhere that I never buy cds from, because they don't sell any with explicit lyrics. I don't like their policy of censoring music. They only sell "clean" versions. Have I mentioned lately that I don't like that store?!

I was actually surprised about Adam Lambert's music. Out of all the cds, I liked his the least. I love the single "For Your Entertainment," which caused all the controversy at the AMA's, but the cd as a whole didn't seem cohesive to me or something. I guess I just don't like all of the songs on it. That happens with a new cd sometimes and the more I play it, the more I will start to enjoy it. We'll see about this one.

I haven't seen New Moon, so I had no idea what the music would be like. But I loved the Twilight Soundtrack, so I figured I would enjoy New Moon's soundtrack. I love it and it is so unlike any of the other cds that I just bought. I could go to sleep listening to it, which is what I did on the way home (half asleep anyway--very relaxed). Of course, I was relaxed after having two delicious glasses of Chianti with dinner. Ron and I had a very special dinner at Charlie Gitto's to celebrate 23 years together! That is almost half of my life time! Since our anniversary was on a Monday (November 23rd), we had to wait for a weekend and after black Friday to have a nice dinner out. It was a fabulous Saturday night! After our meal we gambled at Harrah's until the wee hours of the morning. Anyway, back to the music...

And no, I still haven't bought the Susan Boyle cd, but I will eventually. I was wondering why in the world didn't she put out a Christmas cd? Each year I like to buy ONE new Christmas cd and one by her would have been perfect. I'm thinking Andrea Bocelli's Christmas cd. What do you think? Any other good new Christmas cds this year? I already have dozens of Christmas cds--some old (The Carpenters), some new (Josh Groban), some fun (RuPaul's Ho Ho Ho), and lots of traditional and popular Christmas music. If you tend to get the blues in December (and I do sometimes...I miss my grandkids), then I highly recommend RuPaul's Ho Ho Ho. It will surely put a smile on your face! Thank you, RuPaul for putting out this fun Christmas cd that I wear out each year!

If you're interested in the RuPaul cd, only a few tracks are on youtube and only a few are on myspace, and I didn't have a chance to check yahoo music! That means you need to buy it! You can probably sample it on itunes or amazon. You can hear four of the tracks right here on this her myspace music page. Track # 3 "All I want for Christmas" is sooooo funny, especially the very end when RuPaul asks Michelle about her favorite Christmas memories. RuPaul laughs uncontrollably and that alone is hysterical! Check it out, if you get time!

I know it sounds like a shopping binge and splurge, but I have been so good this year about not charging hardly anything to plastic, not wasting money on unnecessary or expensive items, so why not get something relatively inexpensive that I love so much? I mean, I love music. It is in my blood and always has been. I think that comes from being a band student all through school. The trumpet and later French Horn were my instruments. And I was a very good trumpet player! I can still play it too! Oh yeah, I had a 10% off coupon, plus every cd was on sale, so I think I did good!

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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Been Busy

Sorry for the lack of blog posts lately (for those few of you that read them LOL). I spent nearly two hours the night before Thanksgiving scanning and uploading photos that I took from when we visited Plymouth, Massachusetts. I have one of Plymouth Rock, and several from Plimoth Plantation. It was a chore to review a photo album and narrow down five or six for the blog and then to write some descriptions. Well, I never got to the point of writing about the photos. The weather was not cooperating with my satellite Internet service. It was very cloudy and sleeting and when that happens, my connection is spotty. I tried three times to upload the photos and after about a half hour each time, I would get the "satellite outage, probably due to weather blah, blah, blah" message. I finally gave up!

I have ranted blogged about my spotty so called 'high speed' Internet service before. Any of you that have DirecTV have surely seen the commercials for "high speed" Internet by their satellite company--HughesNet. They make it sound so fantastic, but I don't recommend it. We only have it, because we are too far out for cable or DSL. It is faster than dial up, but speeds vary. It will be even worse in the winter. If snow or ice builds up on your satellite, it will block the signal and must be carefully cleaned off. If it happens a lot, then I will keep up my blog from work.

We have some friends that live practically way out in the middle of nowhere and they have the same problem. They went from dial up to Verizon 3G. They have spotty service too and I am not so sure they can get 3G, since AT&T says we don't have 3G service in this county. Supposedly both companies share the same towers. Of course, neither AT&T or Verizon wants to talk about this. I have had AT&T, even back when they were Cingular and have gone through many phones. I have always been satisfied with their service, but I'm sure they sell the iphone and blackberries without explaining that we don't have 3G here--unless you ask (which I do)! There are lots of people with iphones and blackberries here though, despite the lack of 3G speed. I wonder if most of these people even realize they aren't getting 3G here!

I did the early Black Friday shopping one year and every register was open and each one had a line all the way to the back of the store! I said "never again!" Needless to say, I did not do any Black Friday shopping. But I had seen a Walmart commercial saying you could get a $100 Walmart gift card, if you bought a blackberry Saturday through Friday. Too good to be true, since both our phones are eligible for upgrades! So, I got Ron to meet me at Wallyworld Friday night after work. Busiest day of the year and they have one guy working in the cellphones! I can't stand that store!

I waited over a half hour, while some teen age girl got her a cheap ass touch screen phone from her parents. And these people asked every question in the world, as if they never had a cell phone! The girl was embarrassed, of course. I waited patiently as I listened to the parents make sure the internet was blocked for that phone, etc. The knowledgeable young salesman also informed them that she would also not be able to send picture mail with the internet blocked! Guess that's one girl who won't be sexting, haha! The girl got a casing and some stick on protectors and their grand total was less than $23.00, and the Dad complained about that! Good luck with that phone Pops! It's a good thing you bought the insurance--sucker!

I finally get waited on and the guy tells me that $100 gift card offer was last week! What?! Oh hell no! No, I didn't say it; I was just thinking it! I was so freaking mad (but didn't show it). I was and still am 99% sure that I got there during the correct week for that sale and on the last day. I didn't argue with the guy though. I know that I dvr everything on tv and sometimes don't watch it for a few days, so I couldn't be sure about the date of the blackberry special.

Ron and I have both admitted that we play with the iphones everytime we are in Walmart! So it was only natural that we look at them, and I was ready to buy two and then Ron brought me to my senses LOL! I paid more for my phone like three years ago, than the most expensive iphone, so it only makes sense to use it as long as I can stand it. Of course this phone is much cheaper now. Honestly, I don't care--I still want an iphone! But I want us to have the same phone and he is a little technologically challenged! I had to shhhh him, when he asked the guy if it is hard to learn to use them. I was thinking "don't embarrass me LOL." I told Ron there were tons of how to videos all over the internet, especially at the Apple website...GRrrrrr!

I love my little phone, but it is very thick. It is at least as thick as a pack of cigarettes, but otherwise very, very tiny. It's bulky to have in any pocket, except an inside jacket pocket. For that reason, I decided to wait until Spring to get my iphone. Hopefully we will have 3G by then too.

So, Thanksgiving came and went. I got up and watched the Macy's Thanksgiving parade on tv and we had a nice peaceful and restful day at home. We didn't have a giant feast, because we had originally planned to eat out. We were both so tired and since I had a bad headache we decided to stay home at the last minute. No problem though, Ron can whip up a nice meal in no time. He is such a good cook and lucky for me, he actually enjoys cooking (I don't).

Aside from that, I have been busy with household chores and of course my monthly billing and accounting that I do on the first of each month. I have racked my brain trying to think of something to put on the blog. Every time I started to post something, I felt like it was old news or something I had already seen on several other blogs (and you probably did too). You know me, I like to mix it up--not too much personal stuff, not too much politics, not too much news, not too many videos, etc. Hopefully I will get back on track now and not take a week off from the blog anytime soon.

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