Showing posts from March, 2009

The Global Connection On A Local Level

The beauty of the Internet is that we make connections. Family a thousand miles away can catch up in the time that it takes to download an email and a couple of digital images. We find friends from long ago and regain what we may have lost forever in decades past. The journey along the path finds hidden treasures, and forms bonds with those across one ocean or another.

What many of us lack these days is the local network. Our lives are chaotic, trying to fit 60 hours of work in 40 hours of schedule, spend quality time with our families and enrich our children's lives with activities. It doesn't leave a lot of time for friends on a local scale. Let's just say that I'm not the only Mom at those two nights of scouts each week who looks forward to that hour or ninety minutes to forge friendships with like minded women-because we ALL have that insanity called life in the digital age.

For me, enter Twitter. When I joined up, a simple tweet about something happening here…

You Will Tell Me If I Am Guilty of This, Right?


Hello? Are you there?

Getting Back Into the Swing of Things

Friday, I began working again. It's a job that looks very interesting. Fun coworkers. Training, depending on traffic, is 30 to 45 minutes from home. Weird, considering everyone lives near me, but hey, I don't make the rules (or pay the mileage).

Today, the boss said no overtime, which meant that we should have left at 4:15. Works for me, I had to drive home, grab the boys, then drive another 30 miles to Chef's Cub Scout meeting. I wasn't sweating things, because I walked in the front door Friday afternoon at 5:35. Plenty of time to go get the kids from the friend's house, go home, change, grab a snack and then be on the road. Make or break to be at scouts on time is to be starting the car at 6:15.

4:35 rolls around and we're still working. I'm getting a bit antsy, but not too bad. 4:50, done with that section-but the trainer starts ANOTHER one that he says will take about 45 minutes. OH NO!!!!! I can see the look on the faces of the two people …

Hmm, Wonder What My House Smells Like?

I see flour in the pantry
I see yeast chillin away
I see sugar oil and water
I see a dough on the way

Don't dial out tonight
It's better here at home
There's a pizza on the rise.

Suzanne's Soundtrack Sunday

Last week, in honor of 5 Minutes for Mom's Ultimate Blog Party, I featured a playlist of songs guaranteed to keep the party grooving.

This week, a list of awesome songs, with a twist. They're great songs that you DON'T want to play at a party because they'll kill the mood lickety split.

In no particular order, some party killers:
Wishing You Were Here-Chicago
Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word- Elton John
Alone Again, Naturally-Gilbert O'Sullivan
All By Myself-Eric Carmen
Bridge Over Troubled Waters-Simon and Garfunkel
Elinor Rigby-Beatles
Without You-Harry Nillson
Brick-Ben Folds Five
That's The Way I Always Heard It Should Be-Carly Simon

And songs that will kill a party because they are awful:
I Will Always Love You-Whitney Houston
Seasons in the Sun-Terry Jacks
Nothings Gonna Change My Love For You-Glenn Medieros
I Miss You-Klymaxx
When A Man Loves a Woman-Michael Bolton
Always-Atlantic Starr
Havin' My Baby-Paul Anka

Obviously, I'm just …


I've had some dental issues of late. When I bite down on the right side of the mouth, it felt weird, like a tooth wasn't quite right. Then last week, I realized "dammit, it's an abscess!". Yep, on the gum line, under the tongue. I hadn't noticed it until it puffed up a bit.

No insurance and no money means no dentist. I'm in the process of seeing if I can get in at the health department. In the meantime, I'm doing a better job of flossing and using an antiseptic mouthwash.

Today, I realized that crap, one of the teeth on that side is LOOSE! CRAP!!!! I'm afraid that it's going to be a goner. Other than the tenderness from the abscess, it just feels weird, not painful.

I'm no stranger to dental work. My mouth is small, and I had extensive orthdontia (six years), and several teeth rotted out under those metal bands. I've had a cap in my mouth since I was sixteen, because one of those teeth disintegrated a week after the braces…

A New Chapter Begins

I started the new job today. On no sleep. Thanks to yesterday's headache, my sleep cycle was out of whack. You're wondering when I got tired? 4:45. When did I need to be up? 7am. At that point, I decided that sleep would be bad and I visited some of the other participants of the blog party.

The day was chock a block with paperwork and being read to from a manual the size of the Tampa Yellow Pages. It could have been boring, but the trainer had a very dry wit. Unfortunately, there was a lot of down time and reading ahead in the training manuals. We were all fingerprinted, a very time consuming process. I was caught up on the assigned reading and even way ahead and we still had over an hour and a half of waiting, so I read my Educational Psychology text.

Monday is when we get into the nuts and bolts. Finally.

And with that, I am going to bed. Finally.

A Headache Inducing Day

It didn't start off well. One son has a bad habit of blowing off his homework, and despite numerous requests yesterday, he didn't do his spelling word sentencess OR his his graphs for his science project. Of course, at 7am, it's my fault that he doesn't know what these words mean or that he hasn't done the graphs.

The ensuing argument and crying (him) or yelling (me, because I feel that ignoring me is disrespectful), I was left with a migraine headache. It's the last day of unemployment, so I had a list of things to do, hair to color and a meeting to attend. Instead, I needed sleep.

I woke up a half hour before I needed to be at the school. Scrambling to get ready, I got to the school right at the appointed time. This meeting was a follow up to last week's pow wow. I need to detail it for Aspergersville, but last week, we had eight people around the table that all agreed that Gameboy's placement is not working.

In the interim, he was suspended ye…

What's For Dinner Wednesday

Like many working folks, our crockpot gets a workout on a regular basis. Nothing beats coming home and finding dinner ready to eat-except for a trip to a restaurant where someone else is going to do the dishes, too. With a return to work later this week, it's time to crank out some of the meals that have minimum fuss but maximum flavor.

My plan of attack with any crockpot meal is to get at least two meals out of it. If I'm lucky, I can get three or four. Like tonight's.

Anyone who knows us can tell you we LOVE Tex-Mex. I got so excited to hear that our favorite local chain, Tijuana Flats, is opening in Lakeland soon. Of course, I heard this and started thinking of all the things on their menu that I enjoy-tacos, enchiladas, and flautas.

The meal ideas swirling in my head, I made a batch of Tex Mex shredded Chicken. This is one of my own concoctions that is a base for many different meals in that genre. Tonight, it made Enchiladas:

They were tricky little suckers! A…

A Few Things Soothe the Ouch

I attempted to scratch one item off that list today. Halfway done.

See, I had my Measles Mumps Rubella shot back in 4th or 5th grade. That was a second time getting them, because the doctor that did the first one retired-we had no records for school. NOW, the doctor that did the second one (thirty plus years ago!) retired, so I had to get round three today.

The ouch isn't for the shot, it's for the unexpected hit to my wallet. $59.00! And that's only for part one-I have to have another one in thirty days. I am hoping the new job comes with some health insurance.

Thus far, the financial impact is $95.00. I'm not one to throw away that kind of money, so those of you wondering whether I'll be in classes this summer, you can bet on it!

In good news, I've been on a winning streak of sorts!

I recently helped a fellow blogger, Miranda, celebrate her first blogoversary a couple of weeks ago by breaking in my webcam and won this:

Isn't it cool? Thanks for havin…

The ToDo List is Piling Up

With the college acceptance, there's a checklist of things I need to do-and only a few days before I return to work! Let's see:
1. Get new immunizations, since the doctor that did all mine retired when I still lived on LI-I've got no proof of shots!
2. Fill out all the admissions paperwork.
3. Get my HS transcript and other college's transcripts sent to USF to get all my classes credited.
4. See if I can take that Stats class online from my old college/find out if the FAFSA funds will cover me attending both schools this summer. (I really think that based on what FAFSA paperwork I got, I'll take the Stats class and then two classes here at USF)
5. Schedule my orientation (weird to be the one GETTING the orientation)
6. Take some test to prove I know how to learn.
7. Register for classes.

Should be interesting!

There's a First Time For Everything

Two firsts in one:
1. I went to the drive in for the very first time last night.
2. The picture has notes on it!

Yes, we went to the drive in Saturday night. We borrowed a van and loaded up our two and Chef Jr's best friend in the back seat to go see "Race To Witch Mountain." It was a double feature, but let's be honest, does "Confessions of a Shopaholic" sound like a good follow up to the movie we chose? We didn't think so, either.

We arrived early and Ed parked us right behind the projection building and in front of the snack bar. Once situated, we grabbed some dinner-pizza for the kids, a corn dog for me and a sausage dog for Ed, some popcorn and drinks. It reminded me of years ago trips to the roller and ice rinks with what snacks were available. Just before show time, we grabbed another drink and the best movie candy ever, Raisinettes.

I have to say that Race to Witch Mountain was a good follow up to Escape and Return. It was suspenseful and go…

Suzanne's Soundtrack Sunday-Party Time!

We can't have a party without good tunes, and I'm here for the job. In my past life, I was a radio station and club DJ and know what songs will get everybody grooving. Believe it or not, last year's SSS didn't feature my favorites. You get those this year.

So, let's plug the iPod in and get going, shall we? In no particular order, great party tunes...

Just Can't Get Enough-Depeche Mode
Rock Lobster-B52's
Hot Hot Hot-Buster Poindexter and the Bashees of Blue
What I Like About You-Romantics
Walking on the Sun-Smashmouth
Whip It-Devo
Devil With a Blue Dress/Good Golly, Miss Molly-Mitch Ryder
Good Lovin'-The Rascals
In the Summertime-Mungo Jerry
Time Warp-Rocky Horror Picture Show
Last Train To Clarksville-Monkees
What Do All the People Know-Monroes
I Wanna Be a Lifeguard-Blotto
Cool Jerk-The Capitals
Shout-Otis Day and the Knights
Grazin In the Grass-Hugh Masekela (or the Friends of Distinction)
Build Me Up Buttercup-The Foundations
88 Lines About 44 Women-The Nails

It's Official, Part Two

Yep, they've accepted all the credits (I didn't realize that I have to have HCC send a transcript, too), and I am truly a second semester junior. Sometime this week, I will sit down with someone from Admissions to hammer out what exactly I need to earn the degree (and whether the previous Psych classes count towards the degree requirements). Other than 8-10 credits of a language, it looks like everything left to take is within my major.

I'm pretty excited right now!

The Ultimate Blog Party

Last year, amidst all the boxes and moving, I participated in 5 Minutes For Mom's 2008 Ultimate Blog Party. I made some food, served some drinks and made a few new friends. That's what a party should be, right?

So here it is, 2009 and once again, 5 Minutes for Mom is having another party!

It's a party, so we have to introduce ourselves, mix and mingle and have a good time, right? Well, there's a lot of mingling to do, so I'll get on with it.

Hi, I'm Suzanne. I've been writing this blog since September 2005, but I have other blogs and write about food and give out recipes at MomDot each Thursday and I'm about to embark on a new writing adventure soon. This week marks my return to the workforce after a long hiatus. (Yay and Boo, depending on my mood).

SuzanneSez chronicles my life in such a way that you can't help but notice I have ADHD! I write about food, music, family, health and anything else that strikes my fancy, and I'll throw in a pic…

Rita's FREE Ice For the First Day of Spring!

When we lived in Frederick, early March meant Rita's. Two years running, I was the SECOND customer in line when they opened for business on March 12th or 13th (First person got a prize pack). Then, each year, on the first day of spring, we'd load up the car and head over for our free ices.

One of the things we bummed about when we moved here is that there isn't a nearby Rita's. In fact, I think I went gaga when we were in Clearwater last fall, because we were able to get Rita's on the way home from the beach.

A couple of months ago, we got one locally. So, Ed and I resumed the tradition today. If you've got one near you, enjoy one on Rita's, the ices are free and the Gelati's are a buck. Sweet!

Would You Help My Friend Out? Pretty Please?

One of my friends from MomDot, Trisha (aka Red Trisha over there because there's the blog/board owner Trisha, two)is a finalist in a contest to win an Electrolux washer and dryer over at MomCentral.

Anway, Trisha is giving away 4500 EntreCard credits to those who register at Mom Centra, vote(for #8, Strawberry Red) and then Twitter about it. I'm not an EntreCard member, but I wanted to make sure you all knew and voted for her. She is an absolute sweetheart and I'd love to see her have front loaders.

Mom Central will announce the winner on Monday.

Anonymity and the World Wide Web

Those who have been readers for a long time may have wondered a few things, like why do the kids have noms de blog, why my last name isn't on here and why sometimes, I can be really, really vague when talking about past situations when there is no need to be. It's really for my comfort, though you could really find these things out if you wanted to discover them.

At one time, the URL of the blog was the same as a screen name used in many places. Part of the change was because the name wasn't a good fit anymore, part of it was that I didn't want the blog to be easily discovered by anyone Googling that name. Funny how that played out back then-I wanted to control who had the knowledge that this was my blog. Blogging was not done by many people and was considered a 'geeky' activity, so it remained a hidden pursuit.

The Google thing is a big part of it, though. I've mentioned before that computers and the World Wide Web aren't new things in our hous…

What's For Dinner Wednesday

When the ides of March appears, this meal makes its way into the brain In this house, though, its corned beef and RED cabbage. Now, my house doesn't reek!

As far as the corned beef, I've done it in the crock pot before and it didn't taste quite right, the seasoning was missing something. This year, I realized that it was the allspice berries. Ding ding ding! It tasted right.

Now I've got leftovers-and a hearty corned beef hash is in the future. Yum.

Wordless Wednesday

Or my St.Patty's Day pot of gold came a day late. Can you figure out the gold I got?


More Wordless Wednesday posts can be found here.

Fun with the Webcam

This afternoon found Chef Jr and I out on the lanai, working on his science project. Lucky him, for we now have two methods with which to record his efforts on that front that he can review to write up his report that accompanies his project. (the Flip Ultra should market this product to the parents of kids with ADHD.)

Anyway, one of the methods employed was the web cam. After we'd finished recording the material we needed for the day, Chef and I had some fun and as soon as Gameboy got home, he joined in. So, enjoy some pictures of the SuzanneSez family as we sport our Irish by wearing green and/or shamrocks.**
I really think Chef is the spitting image of Ed when I look at pictures from when he was a kid, but looking at this, he's got a lot of my DNA, too.
The ham in him cannot resist something recording his performances, especially since he can see what's going on! Exhibit A.
Exhibit B, as if we needed more proof of what he's doing. This so needs to be my avatar som…

Sertoma Youth Ranch Camping

This past week's pack camping trip was to Sertoma Youth Ranch in Dade City, Florida. It was a nice, relaxing weekend-one where I only left the group campsite to visit the restrooms (A+ on those, btw)

The drive up US Highway 98. I was hoping the Jacob's Ladders would show up and it appears they did come out in digital form.
The entrance to the ranch. On the left, a horse retirement farm and to the right, the next county. Literally. We camped about 50 feet into Hernando County.

Friday the 13th night sky

The next morning, same field.

The requisite picture of our campsite

The requisite picture of the SuzanneSez family official camping breakfast.

Chef Jr making his paper boat for the Rain Gutter Regatta

The boats drying after a coat of acryllic.

Legend states that after you race the boats in a Rain Gutter Regatta, you are supposed to eat a HUGE sundae from it. Chef was the almost the last man standing.

Dinner that night was pouch meals.

My pouch after cooking.

The contents of my pouch. …

I'm Honored As a Stalker

Grandy over at Functional Schmunctional has been a regular read of mine since last year's NaBloPoMo She's always funny and just a cool person to be hanging around with in the Blogosphere.

Grandy is a Success Story, which she shared with her audience last week. We all knew that Grandy is a diabetic (something she wrote about on World Diabetes Day ). Grandy does not sit down quietly and allow the disease to conquer her. No, she's a fighter. One that fights with humor.

So, why am I telling you all this about Grandy? Well, because if you're not already reading her blog, you should be. The cure for a crappy day is some good laughs, and she should be a stop on your 'get rid of my crappy day' tour.

Also, because she honored me with her Sunday Stalker Spotlight . This is her way of honoring her loyal readers and to get us all to check out some new blogs, too. (and comment. Heavy on the comment, please. We bloggy types can NEVER get enough of those!)

So go on over…

Evening Space Shuttle Launch

It is still pretty darn cool to stand in our driveway and watch a shuttle go up. I doubt that Ed or I will ever watch one and not be amazed at the sight. Meanwhile, the kids have grown up with the shuttle program always being there.

Tonight, I had the ability to record the event. The original plan was for me to set up the gorilla pod and prep ahead of time. Alas, I forgot, so this is hand held and twitchy, but it IS my first YouTube video upload.


Soundtrack Sunday-The Sounds of Camping

We just returned from a weekend of camping at the Sertoma Youth Ranch in Brooksville, Florida.

In addition to our cub scout pack, there were several other groups there and a country/bluegrass music festival. The campgrounds were filled with the sounds of fiddles, bass and banjos. Friday night, the music played until about 1 am, Saturday it was still going when I packed it in about 12:30.

I have a soft spot for bluegrass, ever since my Dad insisted on taking Giggles and I to the Grand Ole Opry in 1982 during our first 'Southern Exposure' vacation to the Knoxville World's Fair. It surprised my dad to hear some rebel yells coming out of me at the fine playing going on up on that stage. We all enjoyed it so much that when we decided to attend the New Orlean's World's Fair in 1984, Dad got tickets again and back to Nashville we went.

This weekend, we heard this song from a few of the groups that would have impromptu jams beside their RVs-ten or twelve people, a…

Small Talk Six

This week's Small Talk Six is to "Name six things you love that are Green." I'm interpreting this one literally, rather than the 'green' moniker for things that are environmentally friendly. I hope you all don't mind.

1. Kermit.

If you're of my generation, as soon as you think of green things, this song inevitably comes to mind. Poor Kermie, he's not happy with being green-but I love him anyway.
2. M&M's

Yes, the legend isn't true about their abilities as an aphrodisiac, but I still love my peanut M&M's. It's a rare treat, because I don't keep anything with food dye in the house.
3. Asparagus.

I prefer it roasted in olive oil, with a sprinkling of garlic, kosher salt and pepper, but serve it any way and I'll eat it. Yum.
4.Mike Wazowski.

The neurotic, no respect partner to the warm and fuzzy Sully has a lot of charm beneath that frantic exterior. Any guy who'd allow his girlfriend to call him "Googly…

What Happens to your Pets if Something Happens to YOU?

Last week, my best friend Donna called me with some upsetting news. One of her friends, Susan, died suddenly at a young age (I believe Susan was younger than both of us, but I could be wrong.) It truly was a shock for Donna, a mutual friend and everyone who knew Susan.

I can't tell you how many times I'd call Donna on her 'weekend off' from work and find her with Susan or about to meet Susan for coffee at Starbucks. In fact, Donna usually had to clarify, because she had two friends in Jacksonville named Susan, both met through work-this Susan was "coffee Susan".

Donna is a HUGE animal lover. To the point that for a time, she worked as a part time pet sitter. She still does this for many of her friend's animals, Susan's two cats included. It is a given that if any of her fellow travel agent friends are doing FAM trips or taking advantage of one of the benefits of their career, Donna is offering to care for their pets.

And so it was with Sus…

Tasty Thursday Time!

Head over to MomDot and you'll find recipes for Au Gratin Potatoes, Home Fries and Rosemary Oven Fries.

Wondering what I'm talking about?

Technical Difficulties

Three weeks in, the jury is still out on Vista. Oh, I love having the Toshiba laptop, especially one that doesn't have to be plugged into the wall at all times. The rundown is as follows:

-Battery that lasts for two hours
-fast start up
-the chimes at start up and shut down are pleasant
-the amount of shovelware was minimal
-it has a web cam
-it has a pcmcia slot (I just need to get the software installed to use my N card)
-it charges really fast

-If my cursor lands on a button or a hyperlink, it automatically launches it, whether I've clicked on it or not
-When I upload pictures, (which is pretty much daily), it uploads EVERY picture on the card and doesn't give me the option of selecting what to upload
-It is difficult to create folders of pictures the way I did in XP (see above), especially when each folder has an extra 300 pictures. Vista defaults to uploading all into folders by date. Sorry, I am NOT going to remember I took that picture of fajitas on March …

What's For Dinner Wednesday, Now with Vlog!

Around here, Wednesday isn't Prince Spaghetti day. No, for a while when our fortunes were better and we lived near Cody's Roadhouse, Wednesday night was FAJITA night!!!!

They had two for one Fajitas every Wednesday. The whole family could have dinner and drinks and walk out the door spending 25 bucks (and that's with a good tip, too). If we hadn't prepared dinner, Ed or I would ask "Fajita night?"

And so, when I woke up this morning, this lovely meal popped into my brain. Sweetbay must have known I didn't have anything defrosted, too, because boneless chicken was on sale. We're in like flint.

Since we construct these individually, the kids love having them. To me, the best part is that there's plenty for us to have another meal of it.

Woohoo, it worked! Here's my first What's For Dinner Wednesday Vlog!