Monday, November 30

That 4-Day Weekend Has Created A Monster

I don't want to do a damn thing today. I want to curl up back in my tiger-striped pajama pants and hit the snooze button until, say, Noon. Sleep makes me happy. Watching movies from bed while the rest of the world is at work makes me happy. I love cleaning in the morning, while it doesn't exactly make me ecstatic, it's better than doing it at night when there are cocktails to be had.

Today is no different. Well, it is kinda. First off, I was up at the butt-crack of dawn because I needed to move my car out of the parking garage before the evil arm was lowered and I am forced to pay the City of Norfolk copious amounts of fees because I technically parked my car in the parking garage since Wednesday evening. Am I a bad person? Heck no. I'm merely circumnavigating the system. I don't feel like paying the high fees it costs to put my car in the parking garage when I can park on the street next to the Bentley and Rolls Royce. So unfortunately today started a little early.

And with this extra hour-plus in my morning, I took the time to list out all my Christmas card recipients' addresses, along with corresponding card count (can't go over the amount I have, can we?). Well, I'm missing a good half of my addresses. Whether they're stuck in emails somewhere, or in Facebook messages, or those people have moved for the umpteenth time, I'd rather play Detective this morning and get all those address figured out than go to work.

I miss the days of laziness. The days where I'd wake up, make Wook coffee, do a load of laundry, hit the gym for an hour, come back, shower, throw the load of wash in the dryer, peruse the millions of recipe websites for dinner ideas, make lunch, take a stroll around town admiring the buildings, water, cute houses, and uneven sidewalks.

Now I wake up. Scrounge for a bowl of Cheerios. Maybe make coffee. Shower. Dry hair. Hopefully put make-up on. Dress like I'm going to the Republican National Convention. And try to get out the door by 8:20am. Am I successfully in these attempts? Usually. But there are the sometimes where I won't have time to put makeup on before I head out the door, so it has to come with me. There are the times when I don't have time or energy to iron my clothes, so I put on an all-black ensemble (like today), something that doesn't require ironing (like today), and I hope people don't ask if my Great Aunt Murna died (like today).

I guess it's a good thing my vacation time isn't valid until next year. Because I'd seriously debate not doing a damn thing today. Well minus going to the gym, doing some laundry, cleaning the shower, mopping the floor, putting away clean clothes, and making dinner. So it's technically doing something today, but it doesn't count since I'd be in pajamas.

Sunday, November 29

I'm Pretty Sure 4-Day Weekends Are The Shit

I've never had such a recharge. It's been great. Absolutely no real responsibility since getting off work Wednesday. Minus not killing my house guests. But that wasn't too hard.

Since last Monday, I had Mommy McD invade with her 2 trolls. It was great. It was loud. It was tight. But it beats making her straight-jacket her children for the week while perusing Craigslist for fill-in husbands.

Would we do it again? Yes. With hopefully a bigger place to house the toys, laughs, head bonks, step stools, liquor, scary monsters, pretzels, shoe shine equipment, and coins.

So Monday looked like this: 9-5:30pm

And Tuesday looked like this: 9-5:30pm. No, wait, 6:00pm. No, make it 6:30pm.

And Wednesday looked like this: 9-4:59pm. I'm outta here!!!!!!!!!!

As no one felt like cooking the day before ultimate cooking, we hit up CPK.

Now while you depict this picture as Braxton taking a break from his coloring. I see a future valedictorian writing his acceptance letter to graduate school. Yes, all from this photo.

But Kenny seemed more entertained by the silverback gorilla that graced the table.

That night included movies, lounging, a couple adult beverages, and an early bedtime. And for Sarah, she heard wook stumble home from the bars around 12:30am, rummage around the kitchen for something, make his way up stairs, pop in Two Towers, crawl into bed, and pass out. I heard nothing. I felt another body in the bed when I woke up at 8am the next morning. Heavy Sleeper of the Year award right here. I'll work on my speech.

And what I thought was killer, was that the very next day was only Thursday. Holy shit, I love this. And I don't have to work on Friday. Can this get any better???

Oh wait, someone else is cooking the meal? Oh great, what time should I be over?

Amongst this delicious layout of food, I did nothing. I didn't touch, help make, or pull out of the oven any of the meals you see. Lazy? No. Delegational? Yes.

Now I did help put a serious dent in the wine. And I opened it too. That's points, right?

And my moment of glory: cleaning up. And can you read the apron?? It says, "Women Aren't People." And it's Wook's. I made it for him as a college graduation present. The men thought it was hysterical. The women thought different. Now you see why I have an apron on my Christmas list this year.

And I Thought Target Was Perfect

Target, you're usually my one stop for all things entertaining. Clothes, shoes, electronics, Christmas supplies, jewelry, bags, the Dollar Stop, and more. But this time, you failed me.

Oregon State University is located in Corvallis, Oregon. Not that smelly, destitute land 45 miles south. We have accredited programs in Nuclear Engineering, Forestry, and Pharmacy. That Vortex of Darkness has Hemp Growing 101, Dreadlocks 457, and What's Deoderant? 203.

Our uniforms incorporate our school colors: Orange and Black. That other place adds a new color and hideous pattern each year to their jerseys. No, really, what colors are they again??

Our football players get into local trouble because they stole a sheep from the research lab on campus.

Their players make national news by punching Boise State players after losing a game.

Oregon State University has such fine graduates as: Mama Ging's #2 Brother ('70-something), Brother ('03), myself and Mr Wookie (both '07), and Middle Sister ('10).

Thankfully I don't rely on Target for my Beaver Gear. Otherwise it'll cause blindness.

Saturday, November 28

It's Beginning To Look A lot Like Christmas

If it were up to me, we'd skip Thanksgiving entirely. Nothing is more in the way of Christmas decorating than that one holiday that celebrates giving Small Pox blankets to the Natives.

"That's what they get for being on our land before we got to it." - Wook

So with a quick run to Kmart and Michael's, then back home, then a return trip to Kmart when we realized we bought one package of multi-color lights (both of us: FAIL!), then a pitstop at Panera for grub before returning back home and starting the onslaught.

And you know it's a good sign when Pandora's first Christmas song is Mariah. Yes!

Wook starting to put up the lights on the lower half of our windows. That's as far as he got. My simple request of making sure the lights all point inward thwarted his efforts. Apparently the lights were not cooperating with him. And since I was fighting heavily with the garland, I suggested a trade. And the trade went well.

My garland wrapped around the pole looked more like a 3rd grade science experiment. Wook's looked like he bitch-slapped Martha Stewart, shoved her down the stairwell, and took over her empire. He's that good.

And so I give you my finished product. Gorgoeous! I love it. And while I was perched up in the window sill, people would walk by and wave. I felt partially like a Macy's window display, and partially a window display in the Red Light District of Amsterdam. Either way, it looks good.

And a shot from the sidewalk after I strung lights up on our door. And the best the wreath. It's a bell wreath! I felt like a cat all day playing with my new toy. You would have thought I was part of a Southern Baptist choir, minus the robe. It's great. Well, I think it's great. Wook's opinion is very different. He's about ready to give the cat to a Korean family for dinner. He's not a fan of the bells. I say, not yet.

Operation: Christmas Decoration

Freshly back from Kmart, we've picked up a few decorations that'll help make this loft a Christmas home in time for the holidays.

Wook's already yelling at the string of lights, while I sit here blogging with a nice cup of cocoa.

I'll start working soon enough. I just wanted to inform the masses that Christmas will be festive this year as Wook and I won't have to travel to see each other.

Now to start on the door lights. After my cocoa's gone. Of course. Priorities, people.

Friday, November 27

Happy Black Friday From Home!

I do not wake up early on Black Fridays.

I do not go out shopping on Black Fridays.

I do not deem fighting crowds to save $100 worth my time/energy/sanity.

I do believe in waking up the day after Thanksgiving and hitting the gym.

I do believe in getting back on running schedule for the Shamrock Half Marathon.

I do believe in freezing the leftover turkey meat so Mama Ging can make her infamous (and delicious!) turkey casserole when she visits next week.

I do believe in going on a salad binge to equalize the excessive carbs consumed.

I do believe in lounging the day away, Googling Christmas ideas for family members, while enjoying a cup of coffee, all while Wook plays Call of Duty 2.


Thursday, November 26

Let's Get Together For Some Thanks

I give you in no particular order, the awesomeness of the life of Mrs. Wookie. Let's go...

First off, Mama Ging and the Sheriff. Without them, well, I'd have smaller eyes, probably not redhair, I'd be average in height, I'd probably go to a different, much lamer, college, and I won't be able to play at Crater Lake since it's practically in my backyard.

Then there's the whole family (minus Trac, who was stuck at school). We're pretty retardedly fun. I say we put the "fun" in "dysfunctional."

Then there's Hay who's an almost spitting image of myself, minus younger, a lot more sassy, who looks pretty hot with blonde highlights, can actually cook a full meal, and who loves the gays in Portland as much as the next Kathy Griffin, and who once parked her own car in Downtown so she could take a ZipCar to Ikea. Go figure.

And then there's Middle Sister, the one with the severe coffee addiction, the one who looks killer with caramel lowlights, the one who packs 11 belts on the trip to Hawaii for 8 days, and the one who can handle babysitting 4 kids under 5, including a set of twins, without even flinching that an explosive diaper annihilated her clothing. Pro, I tell you.

We're shmucks. Just look at us. And you can tell who paid attention to my words of wisdom while on vacation this year. The words of wisdom: "Wear sunscreen." Only me.

And the best part: Shmucks who sneak 3 fifths of liquor aboard our cruise ship. Now who will drink to that with me?? Just don't let the Sheriff make your drinks. They can be a bit much, especially when the liquor kicks in right as you step into the shower...on a boat...on a rocking boat. Fun times.

And speaking of family, well, almost family. We have to wait until February to cheer for either a Boy or Girl, but this growing stomach tumor is quickly making its way to arrival day. And since I'm the only one on the wrong coast, I have to settle for Facebook to keep me updated. But in case you're reading, Brother, Amber, I gladly accept more pictures and information to pass along to my readers. Thanks!

Then there's my boy. Well, I call him my 'boy,' but it's hardly that. The man can grow a full beard, rig a trebuchet, cook an amazing meal, and navigate multi-million dollar aircraft. How's that for stellar? And pretty soon, he'll be adding the coveted Wings to his uniform.

And college. I loved you. I miss you. I just don't miss the homework. But I do miss living so close to everyone. I miss Local Boys. I miss McMenamin's. I miss Tuesday Night Dinners. I miss Thursday Night parties. I don't miss Friday morning headaches. I miss everyone in one zip code. I miss the mountains being so close. I miss the hiking, the seafood, and the scenery. I pretty much miss it all. Just not the work.

I'm very thankful for a healthy liver. Without it, my world would be dry. Pun intended.
I'm glad I've been able to travel. I've been to Napa with wook, Hawaii with my family, and Europe by myself (that time). I like seeing places, meeting people, trying foods, tasting beverages, taking pictures, buying magnets, and sending postcards.

And I loved that I had Tour Guide Fluent-German Barbie to assist me during my travel.

Then there's the times when I travel with the sisters. It's fun. It's entertaining. It's hilarious to take bets to see a.) how long it will take Mama Ging to fall asleep, b.) how long it will take Mama Ging to tell us to swallow to un-pop our ears, or c.) how long it will take the Sheriff to zip off his zip-off pants.

And oh, the places we travel. The delectable places we go. Delicious. I miss it.

Then there's my favorite female on this coast. But that's not really a competition. It's fact. And I pretty much visit her where ever she lives. La Pine, Oregon. Pittsburgh, PA. Woodbridge, VA. You live there, Aunt Bop will visit.

And then there's her crazy family. They're loud. They're funny. But they're hysterical. And they always sap my energy. I leave tired every time. They have toddlers. Okay, well 1 toddler, and 1 pre-schooler. But still...young boys...leave me pooped.

My little men. They kill me. And I'm teaching them to kill Uncle Wookie too. Awesome.

My Oregonian Partner B, Dr. Stacey Kervorkian, saved me intense therapy needs with her love for the Orange and Black, the ability to waste hours entertained in Target, her professional jello shots, with introducing me to Shaun of the Dead, and her love for my singing voicemails.

But Oregon wouldn't be the same without the Futon & Breakfast clan of Corvallis. They housed me a multitude of times while I was militarily displaced from Mr. Wookie. But I can't blame them. It's great when you have old college friends in town. You revert back to the good days. The golden days. The days where you playing the Family Guy drinking game, for 3 episodes, then decide to break into the hot tub, but then realize that you're drunker than you should be and head back. Oh, the days...great days.

And if I don't have pictures of you, well, it's obviously a sign that you need to visit me more. Enough said. Book a flight. We have a hide-a-bed. You're welcome to visit. But if you have an infamous meal, be warned that I'll make you cook it for me. That's just my style. And it's kind of like a Finders Fee for Wookie & Co. for putting you up in our loft and showing you around. What are you waiting for? Come see us already.

And lastly the Orange and Black family. I love Corvallis. It's a great college town. With a great school. There's just something about those who come together for the spirit of the Orange and Black. Whether it's mimosas with morning games or Hop, Skip, And Go Naked with afternoon games, it's a great time spent with family, roommates, old roommates, alumni, donaters, and everyone alike. I miss you guys. But I'll be back. Trust me. I will be back.

Wednesday, November 25

It's On Like Donkey Kong

Thank you, Navy, for finally kicking it into high gear. I'm proud of you.

So some may know that wook's been on the brink of Winging for months now. First it was in August, then it got pushed back. Then it was in September, but got pushed back. Then it was in October...are we sensing a trend yet?

But thankfully today his Command put their foot down and said definitely, yes, Winging will be on December 4th. No ifs, ands, or buts. Thank you!

So done are the conversations between the Sheriff and I.

"Can we buy tickets now?"
"It's not final yet."

But I was able to call the Sheriff this afternoon with, "We're good to go on tickets."

I'm jazzed. First off, my parents are coming into town. Secondly, I'm making out my list of the delectable Family Favorite meals that will be made for me. "But we're on vacation." You think I'm going to let you come out all this way without some Biscuits 'n Gravy, or Chicken Tacos, or Bran Muffins, or Pork Chops and Rice, or Rice Pudding. You will be used for your talents.

So officially, there's one week until Mama Ging and the Sheriff jump coasts. That's not taking into consideration 24 hours of a safety net should they experience aircraft delays, weather delays, or the-Sheriff's-at-the-bar delays.

Who's excited??? This blogger right here. While I just saw my parents a couple months ago (in which I still need to post pictures/video about - sorry!!), it'll be good to show them around my stomping grounds on the non-Left Coast.

Let's just hope the Sheriff keeps his Gymkana skills in check. You hear me, Sheriff?

Happy Wednesday Before Thanksgiving!

Yesterday morning's Braxtonism/Kennyism:

It's about 8:00am, yesterday, I'm up because I have to be at work, but wook's still in bed because he had the morning off. So the kids are starting to wake up, and as I tell you, we have a loft so sound travels everywhere.

Brax/Kenny: Squirm, squirm, talk, talk, sing, squirm, repeat.
Mommy McD: "You need to be quiet, Uncle Wookie's sleeping."
Brax/Kenny: Louder squirming, talking, giggling, movement...
Mommy McD: "Shhhhhh...."

Well the kids are not feeling the need to be quiet since Aunt Bop's already up, so the world can be up also. Makes sense to me, too.

Then when it falls apart, and the kids dictate the schedule...

Brax/Kenny, jumping on the hide-a-bed couch, downstairs: "UNCLE WOOKIE! UNCLE WOOKIE! UNCLE WOOKIE! UNCLE WOOKIE!

Wook, to me: "There's no use in pretending I'm sleeping, right?"

Nope. The kids know you're here. They're awake. And they want breakfast.

Sunday, November 22

Back To Our Usual Antics

Tonight's blogging post brought to you by flashlights, batteries, and the Sheriff.

He tells tales of evil spirits, of haunting Green and Yellow, of the Vortex of Darkness.

Invasion: Mommy McD & Family

So I got my wish. The Navy is sending away Daddy McD. Cue maniacal laughter.

Too bad there's so much to do around the house.

As I did dishes this morning, I realize that the Wookie & Co. loft is no where near appropriate for children. No locking cupboards, outlet covers, electronic cords everywhere, and glass products galore. Wow. I feel like I'm trying to crunch a whole nesting episode in less than 36 hours.

Now if only I didn't have to work Monday - Wednesday this week and hang out with Mommy McD & Co. Then we could hit up the mall for fun, watching some Backyardigans, and run while it's still light out.

Instead, she'll experience the typical Wookie household of coming home from work, hopefully on time, maybe a little tired, hopefully not too stressed, throwing together a meal resembling dinner, squeezing in a run/yoga class/workout session, then calling it a night with Lord of the Rings (we put the sleep timer on, so in actuality we only watch 15 minutes a night before falling asleep).

Now, I know, I should be cleaning instead of blogging, but sometimes you just need a break in the action. A time out. And I think I'll start another break by getting a snack. Seems that the cinnamon bread French Toast from this morning has finally worn off. Lunch time!

Saturday, November 21

The 3rd Boy Who Stole My Heart

It was the September after I graduated college and I was still postponing adulthood. I had a measly few hundred dollars in my bank account after I played around Europe for a few weeks, so I put it to good use. Mommy McD was living in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, 7 months pregnant, with not a friend in the time zone. So who schemes with her husband to fly up for a visit?

This blogger right here. Money well worth it. Time well worth it. And a Baby Shower well worth it. Besides, who else is going to go out shoe shopping with you?

Well little did I know her basketball-shaped belly housed another son that would want me as a "part" of the family and let me be an unofficial "aunt."

Happy Birthday to this little man. You've come quite a long way since your Jabba the Baby beginnings. Now you're Jabba the Toddler. Okay, that's not a very long way after all, since you're practically the same size as your brother.

Beta-Carotene Anyone?

So in an effort to find a recipe for carrot salad that doesn't require mayonnaise (yuck!), I stumbled across this delectable delight. And after almost one serving, I'm heading back to the bowl for more.

Recipe via

4 carrots, shredded (I bought them pre-done)
1 apple, peeled/cored/shredded (didn't have one, so not this time)
1 T lemon juice (I used orange juice, instead - didn't have lemon juice)
2 T honey (Organics, yay!)
1/4 c slivered almonds
salt & pepper to taste (I nixed this all together)

Tasty, tasty, tasty. Although it's a different take on the carrot salad, it's a tasty one that doesn't have to be refrigerated because of the dairy product. Yay. Who wants to picnic with me? Oh wait, that's right. It's November. And it's getting cold outside. No picnic then. Just me, some carrot salad,, and an empty loft.

Where's 1-800-Feed-The-Blogger When You Need It?

In this great 800 square foot apartment, there are 2 living, breathing individuals.

One is a large male, shaped like a silverback gorilla, with a pension for Scotch that is old enough to order it's own Scotch, prefers t-shirts and jeans over uniforms, deems videogames appropriate at any age, and can recreate the best Nashville dinner ever had in 2008.

The other is a tall, gawky redheaded female, who dislikes the fiction genre in books, thinks onions are spicy, refuses to buy eggs in styrofoam containers, sits down in the shower (I know, weird!), and never makes the bed.

So what happens when the first roommate goes out of town on business?

The second roommate starves.

Where's a food delivery service when you need it???

There's one thing I thought I picked up in college, which was the ability to feed myself. But fast forward a couple years, I'm living back with my parents (awesome!), and I have the Sheriff at the stove. This blogger did not go hungry. But then fast forward again to the unemployed blogger moving cross-country to where the job markets were better. I had another roommate at the stove. So needless to say, since college my cooking skills have reverted to their levels in high school. In other words, 'boil' and 'water' are a stretch.

Okay, maybe not really, but in the comparison between Wook and I myself in the kitchen. The boy lays down the law. He'll kick me out, tell me to pick out a movie, I pour us drinks, and that's how I contribute to dinner. He's so good he doesn't need me. But when I'm in the kitchen, there's constant: "Omg, am I doing this right?" "What number should the stove be on?" "What goes in the pan first?" "Are you sure?"

I feel like I've de-evolved. I've taken the 1950's and turned it upside down. I can barely suffice caveman times with my ability in cooking. So whenever wook leaves, it leaves a little panic in my heart about how I'm going to survive the duration of an empty home.

And it's not like I'll succumb to frozen dinners. No thanks. There's always the fall back plans of salad, soup, sandwiches, PANCAKES (my mom looooooves these, since it was my Go-To dinner when the Sheriff was out of town), etc. It's just easy to feel inadequate when Wook can whip up our favorite dinner from Nashville last Christmas for our anniversary (which was last Sunday, btw. A whoppin' 6 years together. Holy batman. I know. Intense, right? Agreed. Our relationship is starting 1st grade. Gosh, I'm old. Wait, we're old.).

But there is one thing that is good about Wook leaving the house for the Navy. I get to eat what I want. When I want it. And no one to complain about how it stinks up the house. I'm talking salmon. Wild Alaskan salmon. Thank you Costco. No farm-raised for this blogger. I love the blood-red flesh of a gorgeous steak of fish. What's better than buying non-farmed fish? Catching it. But we never got out this summer for some good, ol'-fashioned fun. Maybe next year.

So I hope you continue to hear from me. If not, I've starved. So wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 17

Conversations Of The Future

Me: " many kids do you want?"
Wook: "Eh...2."
Me: "So...2 boys."
Wook: "Sure."
Me: "One of each?"
Wook: "Sure."
Me: "What if you have 2 girls?"
Wook: "Then I want 3 kids."

Monday, November 16

If I Can Only Get One Thing For Thanksgiving

Dear Navy,

Please go through with your plans of sending Mommy McD's husband away for Thanksgiving because I could really use the entertainment/company of her trolls.

I know it's not very nice to send away loved ones during the holidays, but the military has been doing it for years. And so what's another person? Besides, it'd only be a for a few days.

So have no fear, Wookie & Company are here.

I've been listing out what we'll need to pick up to have such guests in our household, and it shouldn't take much to accommodate a couple toddlers. I've already planned on hiding the machete, because I'm pretty sure the boys can't learn to count without all 10 fingers. So out of respect for their education, all military weaponry will be hid. You can thank me now.

Please, please, please cross over the bridge-tunnel and invade our 800 sqft apt.

We're pleading with you. Entertain us. It'll be our pleasure.

I can't wait to see you. And your superbly delightful offspring.


Your Aunt Bop & Uncle Wookie

Sunday, November 15

Sometimes I Wonder About Us

Wook's only means of eating eggs are when they're prepared to a hard scramble.

So what does he do when I decided to take a few and hard boil them for snack time?

He draws faces on them. Like they're terrified of being eaten. Now what am I going to do with these? I can't eat them now. They're too cute. Just look at them. The right one is clearly sleep deprived, while the left seems like a sea sick Asian. They just can't win.

How To Survive A Nor'Easter 101

Lesson #1: Live in Downtown Norfolk. Not Ocean View. Or "Jersey" as we call it.

Lesson #2: Invite those who are without power to join you Downtown for beverages, meals, and a place to stay that has power and the ability for a warm shower.

Lesson #3: Avoid the insane weather by hanging out at our watering hole: Snappers.

Lesson #4: Take advantage of the City of Norfolk opening all parking garages for free to Downtown residents so cars aren't damaged by the wind, rain, debris-filled water.

Lesson #5: Don't live in a low-lying area or try to drive through high water.

Lesson #6: Have really good insurance if you do want to live in low-lying areas.

Lesson #7: Allow the local news to use your boat to make their reporting more real.

Lesson #8: Have plenty of sandbags on hand for when strong wind and excessive water levels breach window seals and exterior frames and encroach on office space.

Exterior pictures courtesy of Joe and his less-than-fortunate neighbors who live in the low-lying areas of coastal Virginia and had to spend over 3 days without power.

Interior pictures of a saturated small conference room courtesy of Mrs Wookie.

Friday, November 13

How I Feel This Morning

Do you know when you sleep wrong on your shoulder and it feels all jammed up into your neck? That's how I feel this morning.

And you know when you floss after not flossing for a while, and only one part of your gum swells up bigger than a life raft from Cuba to Florida? That's how I feel this morning.

And you know when you're starving when you wake up, but the requisite heaping bowl of Cheerios just doesn't do the job? That's how I feel this morning.

And I had a dream that a text went out to the whole office saying work is closed for the day. I wish. I really wish. That's how I feel this morning.

And yesterday I decided to pound 3 snack-sized Snickers left over from Halloween because I was wanting some chocolate. But instead, they gave me gut rot. So much for having a reduced sugar-level eating regime. I still feel gross and bloated. That's how I feel this morning.

Any my right heel is still tender from working Wednesday in heels. Oh, Future Nurse Middle Sister, the bottom and back of my calcaneus is sore - remedies? Minus wearing different shoes. Thanks! That's how I feel this morning.

And when I first looked out the window, I didn't think it looked that bad. Our power stayed on all night. And it's not really raining. Well apparently that was another calm break in the storm because it's back to having the wind molest the trees and rain going in all directions. That's what I see this morning.

Thursday, November 12

Norfolk Weather Update

The lights are starting to flicker. We've gotten out the candles. I'm going to charge my phone (it's at 80% battery anyways) just in case. Wook's expediting dinner (spaghetti!) should we not have a working stove in the near future.

What I thought was a break in the weather in the Downtown Norfolk area was just a quiet in the storm. It's back to howling and pouring.

So we'll keep you updated.

Or you can stalk us if you'd like. And should you need a lesson on that, we'll arrange a lecture series brought to you by Professor Sheriff: Professional Stalker.

Edited to Add:

Lights are still on as of 8:00pm. We've eaten dinner and are on our first glass of wine courtesy of last night's event. But the same can't be said in the Joe Cady household.

Apparently the area surrounding the knoll Joe lives on is flooded. Everything but Joe's place has encountered standing water. So, in other words...Joe's stranded. Unless he has a canoe, life raft, helo team, kayak, scuba gear, or Noah to build an Ark, I hope he has groceries. Oh, and the kicker. He's out of power too. He ate a can of tuna fish for dinner. The man has a BBQ, yet doesn't use it. I don't get it either. Cheers, I guess.

Happy Nor'Easter Day Half Off!

What's that mean? It means the weather is so bad right now my office closed. And I'm home. Safely, yes. With only a couple skids on the way home. And now that I'm home. I'm staying home. I thought about going to the mall since I figured no one would be there. But...that's 3 blocks to the rain...and the severe wind...and that's just not worth getting completely drenched for. Sorry, mall. Maybe next time.

I'm a lucky one also. Half the office wasn't in because they couldn't get in. Roads were flooded, bridges closed, and kids were home as all schools were closed. I, somehow, missed the severe weather and traffic. But I still felt like Yoshi on banana peels the whole way. Without the Fishing Cloud Man to put me back onto the roadway.

And this is a screen shot from 10am this morning. Let's just say my building had some issues. Some flooding issues. Over the numerous floors. All building management hands were on deck. And all the towels, buckets, trash bags, and bodies were used to try and contain the mess that was being inflicted on the building. And apparently this is the first time in 10 years my office has closed for a storm like this. Dayum. But hey, here's to getting out early but being credited a full day's work. I'll take it. And some leftovers from last night's event. Mmmmm, crab dip. I love my job.

Wednesday, November 11

And The World Hath Shitteth On Me

It was a great day. Keyword: Was. Then the world took a dump on me. Big, stinky.

What was supposed to be rollin' into work at 9:30 because I've been working late nights/early mornings and it's a way to balance out my schedule, turned into a 9:45am arrival time because...well...let's revisit the title: The world taketh an excrement upon my day.

In the span of 10 minutes. The 10 minutes that usually encompasses a brief walk to my car turned into another epic moment of Ashley's Life: FAIL. So it's a little rainy out here. By a little, I mean, biblical. But it's just rain, so we roll with it. Out come the awesome Target galoshes. The adorable Helly Hansen rain jacket that was an absolute steal at the first downgrade of the Recession last year. Rain, shmain. On to my car, and on to work.

But first...the sky hath pisseth all over ye life.

So it's a biblical flood outside. I believe we've covered this. But we're optimistic. We're walking. We're moving. We're avoiding the sidewalk closest to the street because of vehicular spray. We're doing well. Then *rip*. One handle on the paper bag of fresh linens breaks free. Whatever. We're still good. We're still moving. We're crossing the street. We're remembering where we parked (sometimes I have Dory moments).

Then *rip.*

Second handle on paper bag rips off. Bag of freshly laundered linens falls onto sidewalk. Onto puddle-ridden sidewalk. Fresh linens...puddle...can you guess what color my language was?? I was like a salty sailor after a 9-month tour to the Phillipines. It was amazing. The ability to string a sentence together with words that are most-definitely censored on all major networks astounds me. But then again, I heard myself this morning. I'm definitely an English major.

But we grab the bag in a heat of passion and continue walking to the car.

Woosh!! Umbrella inverts.

Umbrella. Plus wind. Equals...well a sentence strung together with more f***s than a 8th grader who just learned how to cuss. What more could go wrong?? Oh wait. Note to self. Don't ever ask self that question. Because lots can happen.

What's on the schedule today? 2 events. And my paperwork is...?? On the table.


So I get in the car, whip it around to my apt, leave the flashers on while parked in the loading zone, jump out, run in, curse some more, run back out, jump in car, hit the gas, text that I'll be at 9:45am as opposed to 9:30am, and enjoy the drive to work while rocking out to Classic Prince.

And because I'm tired and want to go to sleep now, a quick wrap up.

I got off work at 8:15pm because of 2 events on my schedule. My feet about died because I foolishly didn't remember that I had said 2 events on my schedule (when I should have known considering I wrapped up the catering plans the night before). In case you're thinking of working 2 events in kitten heels, I strongly advise against it. It's a bad path. A painful path. An omg,-is-a-pedicurist-open-at-this-hour pain. Not even a hefty vodka tonic with lemon at Snappers took my mind off how bad my feet were feeling. So what's on the schedule for this weekend? A pedicure. A You-want-flowa? pedicure. And I'll go solo if I have to. That's what she said.

Happy Veterans' Day To You!

Whether it's a veteran from WWII, or the Korean war, or Afghan efforts, thank you to all who've donned the uniform in the name of freedom and the United States. definition: A person who has served in a military force, especially one who has fought in a war: A Vietnam veteran.

Thank you to those who chose to put on that uniform. It's an admirable act that not many have the strength to do. I stand by my Navy man. Whether he's moving across the country. Or studying for another exam in this long trek of flight school. He's doing it. And I'm proud.

After all, I named a blog after us. Because "&Co." would just be boring to read. "Today, I dropped Cheerios on the floor and no one complained." Sad.

A Version Of The Fireside Chat: Blogging From Bed

It's pouring outside. I can just hear it. And it's severely deterring my desire to hit the gym this morning and pounce like a gerbil on the treadmill. There's something about a warm bed. One where you hit snooze 3 times because you're in love with how warm the bed gets and how crisply cold your face is because it's not under the covers.

But alas, this cuddle time with my warm bed will end.

Not because I'll hit the gym up this morning (I've just never been a morning worker-outter). There's this thing called breakfast that drops me to my knees faster than 1979-born boys and the Original Nintendo. I live for breakfast. It's my absolute favorite part of the day. Better than ice cream, getting off work early (which is up there on my list), and pedicures. So it's no reason why I bound down the stairs at lightning speed. There's a heaping bowl of Cheerios to inhale. I really should think about buying stock in Cheerios. I think I've kept the company from collapsing this Recession. That or Costco. Another fabulous institute.

And so now it's Wednesday, which makes me happy since we're almost on the downhill to the weekend. But there's still lots to do this week. There's a sale at Anne Taylor Loft that I've been wanting to hit up since there's been a severe shortage of crew-neck sweaters in the area. Yes, crew neck is Amish. But if I'm bent over a table doing paperwork, the last thing I want to do is give a peepshow. That was done once. It was a very windy day and I wasn't wearing a pencil skirt. Thank goodness no one was around for that incident.

Since I have a little extra time this morning, maybe I'll finish my laundry. Or unload the dishwasher (ugh). Or kill the yappy dog that lives next door. I could eat him for breakfast. But that'd be for my second breakfast of the day (doesn't everyone have 2?). Scrambled eggs, toast, and baconized yappy dog. Probably tastes like chicken. And sounds like silence.

Tuesday, November 10

Thank You

Cue the panic. There are officially 45 days until that festive December holiday. Yes!

And with those 45 days comes my need to be slightly ahead of the curve. Considering I'm slightly ahead in the time zones also.

My task: Be completely done with shopping coming December 1st. Finito. Finished.

The hurdles: I need lists from family members. Yes, you, reading this post who shares genetic traits with me, I need lists. I'd like lists of your needs, wants, sizes, favorite stores, "Omg, I swear if you get me that, you're out of my last will & testament," and everthing in-between.

Ready, set, write. And email. I'd like lists by the end of the week. Please. And it's acceptable to give differing lists to differing people to ensure zero overlap-age.

Here's to Christmas apart. Again. But this time via webcam. It's going to be great!

Monday, November 9

Day #1 of Half Marathon Training

The victims: Wookie & Co. The distance: 2.2 miles. The location: Downtown to Ghent.

The conversations...

Wookie: "We just passed 5 minutes"
Me: "Oh, kill me."

Me: "Are we done yet?"
Wookie: "No."

Me: "Can we start walking yet?"
Wookie: "No."

Wookie: "Left, left, left, right, left."
Me: "Shut up."

Wookie: "Woman, it was your idea to run this Half Marathon in the first place."
Me: "Ya, I know."

The conclusion: Getting back into the gear of running sucks. Gone are the days of Dr. Stacey Kevorkian and I, pounding the pavement, around the neighborhoods of East Medford, at night, singing along to Queen, making sure I don't eat shit down Delta Waters Rd (this blogger + curbs = the running ability of a newborn giraffe). Now all I get are Marine Corp cadences (not Navy, mind you). So am I running a Half Marathon or a Navy PRT (Physical Readiness Test)? You decide.

Sunday, November 8

Beaver Nation, Outpost Station

When you don't have cable, how to we watch our much-needed Saturday football?

We camp out at a sports bar, wearing out Orange and Black (and Grey), cheering on Navy over Notre Dame, Stanford (Go trees!!) over Oregon, and the Beavs against those Golden Bears.

And I'm still waiting on proper photo documentation of those were were at the game yesterday. Ahem. Oh, Baby, please. I have a fan base to uphold. Thanks.

Saturday, November 7

Why Do I Have A Headache Again?

What does our group of friends think is a brilliant idea on a Friday night?

Sneaking a wine bladder into my purse and 5 plastic glasses into another purse. Ugh.

Friday, November 6

Officially Signed Up For Torture

I just did it. For wook and I. We're official. We signed on the dotted line. We forked over the fees. We're excited that it's now on the calendar. We're really crazy. But it'll be fun. Or at least, it should be fun.

March 2010: Shamrock Half Marathon

And the kicker. Mommy McD's signed up also. Yes! Someone else in my corral time. How boring would it be run all by yourself (that's wook's issue - and he's uber bummed that you can't have headphones on during the race as it's a safety hazard). Thankfully I'll have someone else in the "Second to Slow As Balls" category. But I'm okay with running slow. I'm not looking to win. I'm looking to finish. And drink the beer that's at the end of the journey. The free beer.

It's been a few years since I "competed" in running. And I use that term loosely.

It was the Summer of 2006 and it was Hood2Coast. 196 miles total. 3 legs of running (5.4 miles at "medium," 7.5 miles at "very hard" - I never wanted to die so bad, and 4.5 miles at "medium" - which I did die, and had to be replaced for the last mile. Check please!). Would I do that again? The jury is still out. But it was a great time had with the Sheriff, for sure.

But I'm looking forward to this. It's only 13.1 miles. And I have a fan club. Okay, well a fan. And I'm hers. I assume we'll be thoroughly entertained the whole time with conversation, looking at cute guys, wondering what her family is up to at the very moment, what food we're dying to eat, how we can almost taste the beer, and where we can find a little Asian lady to "You want raza (razor)?" our feet.

Mommy McD, I recommend we take the next day to pamper ourselves. I'll request the day off from work. You'll tell the husband you'll be home that Monday night. It'll be good. Because I'm pretty sure we won't want to move for a few days. Except for pulling my leg out of some hot water bath, to be rubbed by some poor little soul, while watching Killer Blood ooze from trees, and thinking that McDonald's sounds really good right now. Awesome.

Thursday, November 5

How Wookie & Co. Throw A Halloween Bash

Our motto: Go big or go home. We don't half-ass anything. So when it comes to throwing a Halloween party, after getting the idea less than a week before the big day, we pull out all the stops. And it was amazing.

First off, I made a party website. Yes, a party website. Here. I was hoping to drum up some marketing efforts to get people to actually come. What I got was...well...a different story. My website got out there. Somehow. After only posting it on Facebook to a private event page. So it's not like the world knew. But still, people in our building found out. And we had a knock on the door by someone a couple floors up asking if it was an open party. Wow. I'm flattered. But sorry, this is email invite only. Apparently I might have a future in marketing and events. Oh wait...

Decorations were stellar. And I'm not talking lame decorations of a bowl of candy corns and pretzels. We had severed fingers. Bloody hands. Themed cupcakes. A graveyard of guac. Everything you should expect from a Wookie & Co. event. Sorry, there aren't any pictures of that because, well, I was in "work mode" during the set-up. I can get into the serious zone sometimes. And by the time guests arrived, I was a couple beverages deep.

Wook even bought a fog machine. That's how dedicated he is to the cause. Take Bond Party, mix it with a Halloween theme, and you have last Saturday night. Exceptional.

The night was a huge success. Huge. We had a great turnout. Our top number was 24 guests. Just perfect, considering our square footage is like less than 900. Most of the food was eaten. The costumes were creative. Everyone from Ren & Stimpy, to Braveheart, to Satan, to Hitman, to Taylor Swift and Kanye, and more. Beverages were consumed. Dancing was had. And the singing was plentiful.

I give you the best singing of the night. I was floored when there was the versing battle. Just floored. And I apologize for the poor lighting. But this was a Halloween party after all.

And when will the next Wookie & Co. event be had? St. Patty's Day? Maybe. But then there's that ol' Half Marathon the wookie & I are debating. So we'll see. But we'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, November 4

Port Call: Norfolk

So I'm driving home from work, thank you Daylight Savings for making it uber dark before I get off work. Anyways, I'm cresting down into the Downtown Norfolk circuit, and what should rise from the waters like a big ass floating hotel?

This bad boy. A Crown Princess cruise ship. Right there. Off Downtown Norfolk. Cool.

Mama Ging was slightly confused by this, so I had to explain that this port is the exact opposite of the way Long Beach, California's is set up. First you have to fuel up at the In N Out, then drive through the ghetto, then drive through the Industrial area, then get to the ship. Here, *bam* cruise ship to urban area in one swoop. Gotta love it. Next stop: Wookie & Co.

Tuesday, November 3

To Run Or Not To Run?

That is the question of the week as wook & I contemplate our dedication over the next 4 months and our schedules in March of next year. Should we? Can we?

And for clarificaton...we're talking the Half Marathon. I think marathons are nuts. I mean, HIGH FIVE if you want to do one. But this blogger...way too lazy.

Anyone want to join us? Anyone in Woodbridge? Anyone named Mommy McD?

Smurfette, Interrupted

I'm on the ball yesterday. I'm up. With my alarm. Showered. Dressed. Ready for the day. Make the 2 block walk to my car. Boop, boop. Wait? Huh? No Boop, boop? Okay, take key, open door like 1987. Get in. Arrange pencil skirt for zero crease lines. Insert key. Turn. No response.

Wait, what??

Take out key. Re-insert key. Turn. No life. No lights. No sirens. No love.

What do I do now?

Call wook? Nope, he's at work already. And can't be reached. Umm...


Ring, ring.

The Sheriff: Marco?" (Yes!)

Me: "Polo! So my car won't start."

So the Sheriff walks me through it all. And you may wonder, why didn't you have someone just jump you? There wasn't anyone around. Plus, I don't know a soul out here really. So road-side assistance, it is.

So I get out the insurance card, call the number on the back for road-side help. A couple minutes later I get the confirmation robotic call from a dialing system saying that "assistance will be there in 45 minutes...are you in a safe location?" Ugh. 45 minutes. The time is now a little after 8:30. The normal time I leave for work. So let's just say Ashley will be quite late for work.

The hour goes like this. Key dude arrives in like 15 minutes, and gets my car started in like 5 minutes. Then on my way to work, I call Sears. "Hi, my car battery is dead. I got jumped to get it to work. So I'll need a new battery. And while you're at it, my wipers could use replacing. And I also need a ride to work right across the street." Check, check, and check.

Clock into work at 9:23. Not too shabby.

I get the call that my car's ready sometime past 1pm. Yay.

So come 5:20 when I clock out, I thankfully am able to get a ride from a coworker across the street to Sears. And again, you may be thinking, You had to get a ride across a street? Yes, a big street. And at night. Umm, I don't think so. I don't want the local news report to be, "Gawky Ging abducted at knifepoint all because someone from work couldn't give her a ride." The end. So I got a ride.

The grand total of damage: $152.52

One new battery and installation. Two wipers and installation. Service fees.

And because I was slightly paranoid about my car not working this morning, I walked out to test it before wook headed into work this morning. Okay, good. It runs. It better. Otherwise there'll be another news report out, "Irate Ging takes New Battery Warranty and shoves up Sears Auto Care Manager's @$$. News at 11!"