Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Barack the Vote!

As I sit on my couch, switching between CNN, FOX, CBS and NBC, plus surfing the net for election results, I must take a moment to say just how very much I LOVE Election Night.

I love voting. I love watching the results come in. I love the excitement and the tension and the controversy. I love the debate and the anticipation. I love the posturing and the projecting.

And while I must admit, I would be celebrating to the point of exhaustion if this was Hillary's night, I am excited about living in a blue nation again. It's been too long and been made worse by a stubborn, bumbling, ill-equipped president.

And of course, the history that will be made when Barack Obama becomes president-elect will be nothing short of electrifying. I, too, will be proud of my country for furthering Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream, for pushing our boundaries and adding a new, hopeful chapter to our collective history.

It's not simply a good time to be a Democrat, but a good time to be an American.

Politically obsessed,
Stefanie

Monday, August 25, 2008

Leaving on a Jet Plane

Except this time, it's not me.

Tonight my mom is somewhere over the Atlantic Coast headed to Boston's Logan Airport.

To say I'm jealous would be putting it mildly. And the ironic thing is that Mama would so much rather be home than traveling, and I've had the itch to travel for a least a month now. My only attempt at scratching comes in the form of daydreams.

And yet, my jealousy pales in comparison to my worry for my Mama. I have absolutely NO idea how she bears with me through my transatlantic travels or just my constant need to hit the open road.

I've already tracked her flights down on the airline's website and discovered, at this moment, she's over Virginia.

Honestly, the best of both worlds would've been for me to accompany her to Bean Town, at least stepping foot on the campus I once dreamt of spending four years upon, Harvard University.

If I had been with her, I could've walked her through the bag-checking, boarding pass lines, talked her through the frustrating, but oh so necessary security ordeal and calmed her fears in navigating Atlanta's International Airport.

Simply put, we'd both be calm. Me knowing she was okay and taken care of and her having a veteran traveler help her avoid the pitfalls of TSA. Don't get me wrong, it's not as though my mother is not completely capable of taking care of herself. I just worry, just like she does every time I pack my bags in search of another adventure. She raised me to be a fiercely independent woman, but that doesn't mean she can sleep until she hears my voice safely in my new time zone.

And tonight, that sleepless worrier will be me, waiting for that phone to ring until I can settle down enough to rest, knowing she's safe.

Ironically yours,
Stefanie

Edited to add: I received my comforting phone call at 12:04 a.m. Safe and sound.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

So...

I've been a bit MIA for a while. Sorry about that. Sometimes, I just don't have much to say. And yes, I do realize that's hard to believe.

My absence hasn't been in vain. I've been quite the productive girl.

Things I've done/Things I might elaborate more about in a future post
*Worked as a crew leader at Vacation Bible School: Power Lab
VBS rocked my world. Seriously, it was the most fun I've had in a long, long time.

*Spent too little, but much appreciated time with my BFF Elizabeth. Sadly, she has since returned to London.

* Took Awesome Austin to the Pink Palace for his eighth birthday. We got to see the Sea Monsters IMAX film and the Treasure Exhibit.

* Went fishing on the Great Mississippi River with my fabulous parents. My daddy picked me some wild berries. They were surprising good. I forgot their name. It wasn't like Wilbur or anything.

*Hosted about a dozen ladies from my Ladies Group for the entree stop in our first summer Progressive Dinner.

*Flirted.

*Took three days off to kick the house into high gear. I painted the hallway, took the border down in the office and the master bath, touched up the paint in the office, learned how to use an electric hedge trimmer, trimmed every hedge I own, raked until I couldn't see straight, pulled weeds until nearly all the skin on my forefinger was gone.

*Saw The Dark Knight. Heath Ledger is truly phenomenal in this role.

*Drank some beer while playing some trivia at the Flying Saucer.

*Wandered through my favorite store, The Antique Gallery and daydreamed.

*Cooked dinner for my parents...more than once.

*Finished the New Testatment. Started the Old Testament.

*Finally hung some pictures.

Busy, busy,
Stefanie


Saturday, June 07, 2008

Feeling young again

So I've been feeling old, suburban, stuck lately. I'm guessing it has something to do with paying a mortgage, pushing 30 and getting excited when I find 2-liters of Dr. Pepper on sale for 89 cents.

Fortunately, last weekend I had the kind of time that'll make a girl feel young again and forget all about that mortgage and those silly 2-liters (which are still a great deal, folks!)

Friday night, my friend Tammy introduced me to her daughter, Lori. Lori has quickly become one of my new favorite people. She has that joie de vivre that inspires me to reach outside my boundaries and shake things up.

While our initial goal was to see the long-awaited Sex and the City movie, we were thwarted due to sold-out shows and ended up drinking Cosmopolitans, eating European-inspired meals and laughing all night at the quaint 1912 restaurant in Midtown.

And since we had SUCH a fabulous time and completely hit it off, Lori invited me to watch SATC the next night with some of her girlfriends.

So after a long day of yard work, running, and softball, I quickly ran home, showered and got dressed up in a little black dress and fabulous magenta Ferragamo heels. Then I picked up Lori and we met Nikki and Kara for Cosmos at 1912.

And then after four years of waiting, we were reunited with Charlotte, Carrie, Miranda and Samantha. Oh, I missed them! I won't ruin it, but the movie was fabulous, a bit fairy tale, but fabulous.

But the movie is two and a half hours long...and I'm pushing 30 people. I'm the freaking City Clerk for goodness sakes and here it is nearly 1 a.m. But Lori pushed for "just one drink" and not wanting to appear uncool, I agreed.

After trying Young Avenue Deli and not feeling the vibe, we headed over to Dish. And that's when we stumbled upon Salsa dancing at Cafe Ole. Before I knew it, it was 3 a.m. and I'd danced and laughed and flirted my way through the night.

It was simply amazing. And just what I needed.

Luckily, Lori loved it every bit as much as I did and we're going back tonight. That's that joie de vivre I was talking about.

This is the life,
Stefanie

Monday, May 26, 2008

Advice from a domestic goddess

In honor of Memorial Day, I thought it appropriate to work on the eternal list of chores around the house. And since from day one I've worried about the air filter, I thought this 90 degree day would be best to check it out.

I wanted to get started on some outside projects before noon, so after cleaning the bathtub and doing a couple loads of laundry, I slick myself up with suntan lotion. And then I think to myself, "Oh, I should check out what size air filter I need." I had asked my daddy to come over and walk me through it since I had NO idea about air filters, where they go or how to get them there.

So I pull down the attic stairs and realize the light is out. I grab a flashlight and up I go, only to realize I have zero clue how to get on the other side of the attic stairs once I get up there. I tuck my flashlight in my sports bra (Always wear a sports bra when in the attic!) and pray. As you can tell, I made it.

Then there's the challenge of crawling over the pipes and wires and under the insulated tubing. I felt very much like a Bond girl...in a sports bra and running shorts. And as I'm squatted down and crawling, I realize that lotioning oneself up prior to climbing into an oven-like, dark crawl space is not so much genius. Although the attic's grime and dust LOVE it as it clings to your sweaty greasy knees. And let's not forget the slickness created when your thighs and calves rub together as you plot your next move. Oh, and did I forget to mention that all the while you are clinging to the flashlight with your teeth.

Once I make it to the air conditioner, it takes me a good five minutes to figure out where in the hell the air filter should go. And of course, it is at the farthest reaches of the tiny, dark, sweltering attic.

And then my greatest discovery - no clean air filters.

So sweaty, grimy domestic goddess reverses the process, all the while praying and drooling a little as the flashlight is still clinched between my teeth.

I'm honestly just glad I survived. Don't try this at home.

Domestically challenged,
Stefanie

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

More evidence for "the home"

So as most anyone who knows me knows, my mother is...crazy. Crazy, for the most part, in a good, funny way. And lately I've been telling her she needs to start a blog because really, she is better at telling her crazy stories herself. But alas, she has yet to do so, so I'm here to share another "Mommie Dearest" tale.

At work today I receive an email titled "Cabby and Patchy" from my mother. At first I think it's a forward, but here is the email in full.

"Hi Sweetie...

Guess What ???? Cabby and Patchy got all new outfits from Baby Gap yesterday. They look soooooooooooooooo cute. No more ole hot stuffy denim..they are dressed in lovely matching summer attire. They were so happy yesterday when I got them all dressed....what an exciting day it was !!

Love you."

(Just a brief explanation, fifteen years ago my mom bought Baby Gap outfits for my old Cabbage Patch dolls because she thought they needed updating. One had on a denim jumper and long sleeved shirt and the other had on jeans and a Gap sweatshirt. Every year during spring cleaning, she washes their clothes.)

This was the complete email. No preface. No explanation. Nothing.

I die laughing at my desk. I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.

And since there's no decent response to such at email I call her at work.

MD: Hello this is "MD."
Me: You know I'm just going to file this in "More evidence for 'the home.'
MD: laughs
Me: You should really start your own blog. I can't appropriately tell these stories.
MD: Why? So the whole world can try to put me in a home?
Me: So they can see that when I say you are crazy, I'm not kidding. When people ask me how my parents are I always say, "Good. Crazy, but good." And people laugh, like I'm kidding.
MD: But they look sooooooooooooooo cute, Stefanie. And they are sooooooooooooo much happier in their new outfits. And they even match your room (my childhood bedroom.)
Me: (Sits in silence, shaking head.)
MD: You really should come over and see them. Oh, and they have matching socks too!
Me: I'm posting your email to my blog. Can you send me pictures or should I come over and do a photo shoot.
MD: Oh, Cabby and Patchy would LOVE a photo shoot.
Me: We could take them out to the Clematis and do it. (Every year until this year since I bought them a camera, she's asked me to photograph her Clematis.)
MD: Ahhhh...that would be wonderful. I'll send you pictures tonight after work.

So, without further ado and because NO explanation helps, I introduce Cabby and Patchy in their new summer attire.



She sent me eight pictures total and I picked the three most representative ones. I'm torn between the one on the window seal and the one in the Clematis as my favorite.

Never a dull moment,
Stefanie

Sunday, May 18, 2008

What a weekend!

While last weekend, I recovered from the incredible party celebrating my 29th bday and house purchasing powers, this weekend I made up for it by cramming it full of ...a little bit of everything.

Friday - Barbecue Fest

Although I'm a native Memphian, I've never been to this international pork celebration because I've always heard you have to know somebody to party. And even though we had VIP passes, it's true. You gotta know a somebody, be somebody or lie like you know somebody.

But, who's to let a beautiful Friday night in downtown Memphis go to waste? So Joey, Loryn and I feasted on Blues City Cafe ribs and tamales. And while we feasted, I introduced myself to the four gentlemen at the table next to us who were here for some kind of dorky older guy convention. The star of their party was Blaine from Iowa. Blaine's 50, has hair implants and fake teeth. He shared all of this with us with more bravado than you'd think possible and all to the chagrin of his tablemates.

Just before leaving, we stopped in at the restroom, where I met Jeff from Arizona. Jeff was here with the Convention and Visitor's Bureau. Joey was quite impressed that I could meet someone in line to the restroom, but when you got it, you got it. Jeff bought me a beer which meant I owed him a decent conversation. He wanted to meet up later, but like most of them, he didn't get his wish.

Oh, and then, I met Joe from St. Louis, who we were all convinced was gay, but still alleged he liked my dancing. We chatted it up with Joe, here with a bachelor party, and his friends for a few before heading back to B-town for a long nights sleep.

Saturday - Slumber Party

Saturday was filled with preparations for my first overnight guests, Mr. Austin and Miss Aubrey. I picked them up about 4:45, we had dinner at Burger King. Well, I had dinner and they took bites of their happy meals in between running, screaming and sliding. Then we came home, played frisbee, ring toss, danced, visited with my parents, made fudge and watched movies. I'm not sure about them, but I was exhausted by 9:30. Aubrey stayed up until midnight and Austin, bless his heart, didn't make it to sleep until after 4 a.m. when the benedryl finally kicked in. Aubrey woke up at 7:20 a.m. and I slept between Austin falling asleep and Aubrey waking up. I swear, I don't know how you parents do it. And at this point, I may never find out.

Sunday - Recover/Softball double header

After my guests departed with their mama, I headed to church to witness one of my dearest friends get engaged in front of the whole congregation. Congrats to Rebekah and Adam! Then I trudged home for a three-hour nap. I forced myself out of bed for an afternoon of softball. Fortunately, I got to sub, which means I kept score and called people a ho. Now, before you go judging, it wasn't my fault. The second person to bat after the person at bat is "In the hole," and when you run it all together it sounds like they are, in fact, a ho. So I just went straight to the name calling and we all had a blast. Not to mention, we won both games.

And now, I'm headed to my fabulous new bed for some MUCH needed rest.

Worn out from fun,
Stefanie