Tuesday, June 28, 2011

He had me at ghost hunting

Today I saw a white cargo van with "The Mystery Machine" painted on the side in those familiar shades of blue, orange and green. I nearly caused a pileup looking for Scooby. You know how I get around the famous.

The guy driving was middle aged and didn't look anything like Shaggy or Fred. But he could have been. After all, most of us don't look as good as we did in the 1970s. Or even the 1980s.

The rear doors provided a phone number and a two-line description: ghost hunting and identification of paranormal activity.

I had to restrain myself from staying behind him when I needed to turn right. Truth be told, if I had had the time I would have followed him all day.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Meet Me on Monday

Once again, thanks to Never Growing Old for this week's question. Don't you feel like you're learning everything about me?

1. What is your favorite food?
Pretty much everything. That's the problem. But if you force me to choose I would have to say cherry pie and spaghetti. Usually not at the same time unless I'm having a really great day!

2. What color scheme is your bedroom?
Mostly navy, with some shades of maroon and green thrown in. Whites walls, gray carpet. No bedspread/comforter anymore because of hot flashes. How many years does this stuff go on?

3. Do you carry a donor card?
You betcha.

4. In your opinion, is the glass half empty or half full?
I hate to admit it, but half empty. I really would like to change that. It's just not as easy as you think.

5. Vanilla or Chocolate?
Vanilla. But I won't turn the chocolate down.

Famous or notorious?

Carly and I overheard the following conversation among three moviegoers at the theater today. No kidding. I am still laughing my a$$ off.

"Look who's standing over there."


"That's Riley *****. Everyone knows who he is."

Friday, June 24, 2011

Making memories no one will ever forget

Our eighth annual visit to Adventureland. You can see our first year (and last year) here.

It's official - I will soon be the shortest one in the family. And I think Riley is now the tallest.

A good time was had by all.

At least until someone hurled. Then the fun came to a screeching halt.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

There went my day

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Did anyone think about toast crumbs in the keyboard?

Back in the day I dreamed about being a newspaper reporter. But a painful stint covering the Dick Gephardt presidential campaign for the Iowa State Daily led me to reconsider. Hindsight being 20-20, it worked out for the best.

It's a frightening time for those of us who use words and images to tell stories. The Des Moines Register fired 13 staffers this week, including a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter and a photographer whose images from across Iowa and the world are stories in themselves. Gone. Just like that.

The newspaper industry is in a free fall. When the Hoop-lahs are my age, newspapers likely will be a relic of the past, like butter churns and rotary phones. Damn the digital age.

The problem is that anyone, anywhere can post anything on the Internet. A lot of what is out there is purposefully deceptive, promoting an agenda while trying to appear unbiased and research based.* While I realize that many newspapers publish online, it isn't the same. The relationship and trust level is different. And it may get harder to find objectivity. That isn't a good thing.

*The one online exception, of course, is The Daily Hoop-lah, where all commentary is reality based and totally straightforward. Usually.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Meet Me On Monday

You know the drill by now. Thanks Never Growing Old.

1. What feature of the opposite sex do you notice first?
Always height. Then feet, which I know is really weird. And you can't look at someone's feet in the winter but you can look at their choice of footwear. I always suspect that people who don't keep their feet looking nice are lax in other areas of life. It's a generalization, I know, but a surprisingly accurate one based on my limited sample.
2. Do you talk to yourself?
You bet. All the time! I'm the best listener I know.
3. What is your current relationship status?
Married for 22 years to Big Dog.

4. Do you have a garden?
I have a regular tomato plant in a pot on the desk and an heirloom tomato plant in the ground. I would love to have a garden. Both my grandparents and parents had big gardens. They grew everything and it all tastes so much better when it's fresh. Maybe I'll put that on Big Dog's list of things to do.

5. What is your favorite licorice flavor?
Cherry, of course! Love it, but I have to be careful to not eat too much. It can give me one heck of a stomachache.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

It's a Mike Monday . . . On Saturday

Here's the Lion King protecting Pride Rock from an aerial attack.

I couldn't wait until Monday to post it. He is too adorable!

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Go ahead AARP, send me my welcome letter

Today I saw a purse that I own (and bought new) described online as vintage. Isn't that just a synonym for old? Classic maybe. For people of exquisite taste definitely. But vintage? Might as well start calling me grandma. Oh wait, someone already did.

I'm normally not this touchy. But I am definitely in a funk today. Perhaps too much birthday partying, or too much rain, or too much something.

Dessert. Now.

Monday, June 13, 2011

It's a Mike Monday

Back by popular demand . . .

Mike is a Lion King wannabe, ruling from this spot on the deck. I wouldn't suggest you tell him it's time to come in. He might eat you.

Meet Me on Monday

Once again it's time for Meet Me on Monday, courtesy of Never Growing Old.

1. What is your favorite yogurt flavor?
No contest  - I love anything cherry. Followed by vanilla, which I know sounds boring, but I love it anyway. Strangely enough, I am not a fan of cherry vanilla, although I will eat it in a pinch. 

2. Ankle or knee socks? and on the same theme, white socks or coloured??
I like my socks bright and bold and slightly obnoxious. It's hard to find cool patterns in knee socks, which is my preference. I buy crew socks just for the cool designs, but the length bugs me. And I only buy one brand, b.ella. I wear ankle-length white socks at home or when exercising, buy rarely in public. There's something about white socks with shoes that screams fashion misfit. Like wearing your shirts tucked in.

3. How is the weather right now?
Stormy weather rolled in about two hours ago while I was at Chili's with my mom and the Hoop-lahs. It was so windy and the sky was so black that I left to drive home and close my windows. Good thing we live close by. I was gone 8 minutes flat and lunch had just been served when I returned. And then it started pouring.

4. Are you a fast typer?
Very fast. Go ahead, challenge me to a typing test. I bet you $20 I would win.

5. Red or White Wine?
Definitely white, but given a choice I prefer margaritas or Malibu with pineapple. A friend gave me a bottle of Skinny Girl margarita and some Snickers bars for my birthday. I may have to break them out this afternoon. Don't you love friends who know you so well?

Friday, June 10, 2011

The pin just dropped

Shhhh . . . can you hear that? Me neither. The Hoop-lahs are quiet.

Too quiet.

I'd better investigate.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me

A few days late, of course, but that's how I roll. I don't think I look a day over 43, which is great because I hear 44 is when things really start to show.

I popped in this picture so you could meet my Mom. Birthdays are a good time for recognizing all that your mom does for you and for passing on good skin and exceptional intelligence. So thanks Mom! You're the best! Maybe one day the Hoop-lahs will figure out this gift of gratitude.

As birthdays go, it was an interesting day, starting with a late morning funeral. A much deeper person than I might have contemplated the collision of birth and death, the beginning and the end. But really, it felt more like a celebration. The end of his suffering was a great gift and I was happy to share this day with him.

I got to see my friend Marti, who is one of my favorite people. She is kind and thoughtful and is a great gift giver. Can you guess what she gave me? Read here if you need a clue. She also gave me a copy of Tina Fey's biography, Bossypants. Tina Fey cracks me up.

Later, a rousing round of "Happy Birthday" from the Hoop-lahs, a gift certificate for not one, but two pedicures . . . really, what more could a girl want?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Big Dog has a boo boo

Tip of the Day: When Riley or anyone else cracks a line drive right at you, try to hop over it.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Glad to have you join our crazy ride

Here at The Daily Hoop-lah we're pretty excited to welcome a few new readers. They left nice comments today, which I would comment on, but Blogger won't let me. Figure that one out.

So welcome! And don't worry. We rarely let the Hoop-lah in the picture drive. Only when there's a golf cart and parked cars nearby. But that's a story for another day.

Meet Me on Monday

It's Meet Me on Monday time again, courtesy of Never Growing Old.
Here are this week's questions.

1. What is was the last piece of candy that you ate?
Snickers, in a DQ blizzard. We have a candy bucket in our kitchen, but it needs to be restocked. There is nothing good in it. Honestly, I try to avoid filling it because I have a heard time pretending it's not there.

2. Do you "read" in the bathroom?
Not usually. I'm efficient and don't dally. Who wants to hang out in the bathroom? However, there is someone in the Hoop-lah house who reads in the bathroom regularly, so there is always a magazine or two in there in a pinch.

3. I can't stand when someone _________?
Oh gosh, this is a long list for me. Double dips. Leaves their used Kleenex sitting around. Etc., etc., etc. But my number one is picks their nose. One of the most disgusting habits ever, especially when done by a grown up.

4. Do you do daily, weekly or monthly grocery shopping?
I'd like to say weekly, but I am there at least every other day. I hate grocery shopping. You go, spend a bunch of money, come home and still have nothing to eat. Which really means you have to eat it before Riley gets a hold of it.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

In the summertime, when the weather is fine

What could be more fun than a new tire swing?

Friday, June 3, 2011

Hoop-lah all wet 2011, vol. 1

It's that time of year again. I know you're anxiously waiting for my pool report.

Here's the thing. Sending the teenage nanny to the pool with the cherubs apparently is the thing to do these days. Which in theory should work out fine, as long as your babysitter is responsible enough to actually watch the kids.

But I'll tell you, I spent two hours watching a girl making out with her boyfriend. I'm talking the laying down, legs over each other kind of stuff. It didn't even occur to me that they were there with kids. Until they went to leave, when three young girls who hadn't been supervised all afternoon suddenly appeared.

Normally I'm not big on ratting people out, but I hope someone who saw them lets a parent know what's going on. If I were paying for that "service," I'd be asking for a refund.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Marlo Thomas is mocking me

I figured out today why I never pay my bills on time. It's not for a lack of money, although I wouldn't describe the bank account as overflowing. It's not because I'm forgetful, although I really am. It's not because I enjoy paying late fees, although I must because it would cost less to just hire a personal assistant.

It's because the fund raisers have written me off. In the good old days, solicitations arrived every other day, usually with freebie mailing labels. But now, thanks to the economy, nothing. Apparently those labels were the first thing to go for freeloaders like me.

Without labels, how can I mail my bills? Don't even tell me to write my return address. That would be like asking someone to get up and change the TV channel. We don't do that anymore. So the bills sit, waiting for someone, anyone to fill out those three little envelope lines. Every morning I think, "I'll do that today." Every night I realize that I forgot again. When I finally get around to it, I'm usually a week late and have to fill out 10 at once.

I should have sent Marlo some money.

So if you happen to work at the National Turkey Wildlife Federation, stop sending me weekly postcards and send me mailing labels instead. I promise I'll be more grateful.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The facts of life

Tonight, with all his fatherly wisdom, Big Dog was explaining to Riley the difference between Friday night girls and Saturday night girls. Meaning one is a little more fun than the other.

He forgot there was another pair of ears in the car, belonging to a certain Hoop-lah, who proudly proclaimed, "I'm going to be a Saturday night girl!"

God help us all.