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mama endorsed: nursing products

To complete my journey into full-blown mommy-bloggerhood, I’ve decided to do a post or several posts telling y’all about my favorite baby products. I’ll probably also tell y’all about products that have not impressed me. Hooray, my blog just got even more boring!

Since my child decided to only snack for most of the day and I’m therefore a little uncomfortable, I’ll start by talking about nursing-related products.

First, my breast pump. Hey, fellas, where are y’all going? Is it something I said? Anyway, since I’m home with baby all the time, I’ve never really needed an electric pump, so I just have a manual pump. It’s by Lansinoh, and I love it. I mean, as much as one can love a breast pump. Oh, I also cracked up when Liz Lemon called it a mommy microphone on 30 Rock a few weeks ago. I was like, “Ha! It’s my pump!” I hate myself right now.

Next, my hooter hider, as they’re called. Also known as that apron I use for nursing in public. I really like mine, it’s a Bebe Au Lait (could that brand name be any more obnoxiously cutesy?). I like it because it’s wide enough for full coverage, it has little burp cloths sewn into the inside, and the way it is made, I can watch baby — very handy when we were first working on the whole nursing thing.

Nursing bras are another story. I have yet to find a comfortable nursing bra. The Motherhood Maternity ones are a joke. I have 2 of their joggers, which are a complete waste of the money I spent on them. They’re supposedly made for nursing mamas, but they provide zero support, and when you’re nursing, your boobs are sensitive, especially if your milk ducts are full. You simply cannot have your girls bouncing around the way they would in a Motherhood jog bra. I have another non-jogger, too, from Motherhood. Pretty much the most uncomfortable bra I’ve ever worn. I have a Gilligan & O’Malley nursing bra that I got at Target. It’s okay, I guess, but I’m not inspired to wear it. Most days I end up just wearing a Medela sleep bra and letting ‘em sag. I love these things and have more than one.

I did buy a jog bra when I was first pregnant, and it’s the one I use now so I can work out comfortably. It’s a Champion Maximum Support. I wish it came in a nursing style.

Everyone says to buy the Lansinoh boob cream, and I have some, but I haven’t really used it that much. It feels great, but I just haven’t needed it. Also, I had thrush for about 5 months, so the last thing I wanted to do was keep my boobs moist so the thrush could thrive (you’re welcome for that). One of my mom friends did tell me it works great for chapped lips, too, but I haven’t tried it.

For bottles, we have Dr. Brown’s and then some Playtex Drop-ins. We’ve used the Playtex some, but we can’t store very much milk using that system unless we wanted to really buy a lot of kits, so we don’t use those as much as the Dr. Brown’s bottles. I will say that the supposed “anti-gas” feature of the bottles doesn’t really work. She’s had some amazingly huge burps after we’ve used one of these bottles. I mostly freeze milk in Lansinoh storage bags. Those are great, because they’re thin, and it doesn’t take long to heat milk in a bowl of water in one of those bags.

Breast pads. Oh, breast pads. I’d heard about how great the Lansinoh ones were, and I was not impressed. They never stayed in place and were constantly folding in on themselves. So I switched to Johnson’s. They stay in place beautifully, but get this–they have nipples. I get the concept of having a little pocket on the inside that your nipple goes into–that helps them stay in place. But they have nipples on the outside! One of the reasons for wearing breast pads is to hide your nipples, so to me this is the opposite of helpful. I love them anyway because they stay in place so well.

I’m going to miss my male readers.

Silverfish Handcatch!

The Old Spice guy responds, me laughs

I love this man. He’s not my man, but my man could smell like him.

Here’s the latest commercial:

And here are video responses to comments about the commercial.

This one cracks me up simply for how he addresses the person:

LOL, mascularity:

Ok, so there are lots, too many for me to watch since I want to go to bed soon (with my man, who could smell like the Old Spice guy). But this is my favorite one I’ve seen:

i heart Publix

I went to Publix last night, and our Publix isn’t one of those Publix Greenwise stores, but they’ve added a ton of organic foods, gluten-free foods, natural meats, etc. I’ve been able to get natural bacon there for the last few months, and the Amy’s freezer meals (which I keep on hand for Frank in case I don’t feel like cooking or am not inspired to cook) are cheaper there than at our teeny Whole Foods (previously Wild Oats). Oooh, and last night, I found all beef natural franks! Which means I can eat a hot dog! I get headaches every time I have regular cured hot dogs, even beef ones (I assume from the nitrates/nitrites), and I’m trying to stay away from pork as much as possible.

Every time I go to Publix, I somehow end up walking down the vitamin aisle, which is also where they keep the “healthy” snack bars (healthy is in quotes because all of the ones Publix was carrying are very very bad for my body). Well, last night, I was walking by, out of habit, scanning the snack bars to see what they had. I actually didn’t even realize I was doing this until something jumped out at me. Larabars! At Publix! And they were four cents cheaper than on Amazon, twenty cents cheaper than the Whole Foods sale price, and forty cents cheaper than the non-sale price! I was so excited!

I will miss Publix.

I made bread!

Successfully! And it’s gooooooood. Ok, I didn’t like make it from scratch and mix up all the flours and whatnot, but I did use this mix from Bob’s Red Mill (my favorite of all the red mills). I had tried it before, but being smart like I am, I had already packed up all my bread pans (not that I’ve ever made bread in my life, but you know, I make a lot of things now that I didn’t make before I was GF), so when I made it the first time, I used the wrong size pan *AND* I missed that whole *let the dough rise in the pan before you bake it* step. Minor things, of course. So the bread the first time I made it was… well, it tasted good, but the texture was all. wrong. /Hermione

But this time it came out very well, as I actually followed the instructions, yay me, and I bought a bread pan at Publix a couple of weeks ago after my first try at making bread went wonky. (My cooling racks are also in storage, of course, because I *never* need them, right, so I first used a ceramic plate and then moved it to my wrought-iron trivet so it would cool faster.)

We had bacon and mayo sandwiches (we don’t have tomatoes or lettuce right now, I wasn’t actually thinking ahead) at 11:30 p.m., because I could not wait to eat a sandwich. Funny, I was never a sandwich person (nor a bacon person, for that matter) before this whole gluten bigotry popped up.

i told y’all i’m not hungry

My lunch every day this week (because this is oh-so-exciting blog material):

  • One avocado sprinkled w/ garlic powder and kosher salt.
  • About half a cup of hearts of palm, cut in chunks.
  • Fruit, usually pears.
  • 365 Black Cherry soda (so good).

Yeah. That’s what I’ve been eating for lunch. Because it’s all I’m hungry for. And some days I’m forgetting to eat dinner. Yesterday, I did eat a packaged Indian dish I bought at the health food store (not Amy’s, this one was not in the freezer section and was labeled completely GF and not manufactured in a facility that also makes wheat products). No wonder I’m losing weight. I’m definitely doing that. I don’t own a scale, but I have tightened my belt two loops since getting off gluten, and my shirts are fitting looser. I still have a long way to go, but the swelling came out of my face immediately, my boobs disappeared right away, and now my stomach is starting to flatten. I suspect my arms will start to deflate next. My legs and butt will be the most stubborn. As always. Cheeky buttocks.

Pun intended, of course.

full day — friends, food, film, grocery store (ok, i tried to alliterate the whole thing)

Hey, guess what happened today? We were on time somewhere! Nine minutes early to the Piera house, actually. We went for food, movie, and grocery shopping with the Pieras and D (is he semi-anonymous too?). Hey, it’s way funner than it sounds. We told them we would be there at 2 p.m., and we arrived at 1:51 (for you mathematically inept, I did the math; I’m nice, right?). We were so proud. They were so shocked. “First time for everything.” Whatever, Snidey McSniderson.

We took a quick trip inside to see the water closet that wRitErsbLock recently remodeled. She’s right, the interweb pictures don’t do it justice. I finally told her this after I saw it in person. I thought it looked like a crypt online; it looks much friendlier in person — not at all like someone might shove you in it and nail it shut!

So first things second, we went to Chipotle (because first we stopped for actual first things — gasoline). Oh, wait. At the gas station, Frank said he would get out and pump the gas, and I said I would go ask wRitErsbLock where Chipotle was (still is). We quickly got sidetracked.

WRITERSBLOCK: How did this happen?
SARAHK: What?
WB [motioning wildly toward Frank]: How did you get him to do that? You were driving, and he is pumping the gas! [Sherlock] never pumps the gas!
SHERLOCK: I pump gas. Into my own car.
SARAHK: Oh. Frank always does that. It’s the man’s job. I didn’t even have to ask.
WB: She didn’t even have to ask!
SHERLOCK [examining wb's hands]: Yep. She’s got two.
SARAHK: So have I. But Frank’s got manners. And chivalry. Some things are just the man’s job. He opens my doors, too. [WB looking at sherlock in disdain, sherlock looking all snobbish about that.]
SHERLOCK: Nope. She’s perfectly capable.
D: You get mad at me if I do that for you.
WB: Yes, but [sherlock] is my husband!

Ok, so we went onto Chipotle. WB apparently took exception at the fact that I don’t drive like the crazy Florida drivers; I actually leave four or five cars’ lengths between the car in front of me and my own car. Call the Insanity Wagon, y’all! I forgot to ask if she also took exception to my pulling over for the emergency vehicle that wanted by. Picky, picky.

So here’s how stupid I am. I know that Chipotle is a safe place to eat, and we don’t have them here, and I can eat everything except the tortillas. So I was happily set to order my burrito bol. And I was being all smart. They wear gloves, right? I know that I’m sensitive to cross-contamination, so I asked the girl making the bol if she would please change her gloves before making my bol. She agreed right away, and I quickly added that I’m allergic to the tortillas, and she gave me a funny look, and I didn’t pursue or explain, I just moved on, carefully watching as she almost dredged the new gloves across the tortillas as she reached for my bol. I would have asked for even newer gloves, but she missed the tortillas by *that much*. Did I mention my stupidity? Ok, so girl #1 got my bol started, and after the rice and beans, she passed my bol along to girl #2. I blindly told girl #2 which salsas I would like, and please give me cheese and guacamole. Did I ask girl #2 to change her gloves? No. Didn’t even think about it until after grocery shopping several hours later when my stomach was rumbling full-steam, I had a migraine going, and I was having seizures. Then I thought back and realized that duh, I forgot about girl #2, and what does she do? She actually folds everyone’s burritos with her gloved fingers and gets the gloves all over those tortillas, and yes, she grabbed all my little cheeses with those same fingers. And another thing? I shouldn’t have even had the cheese, because I’m off cheese for another week. Good job, me. Everyone must change gloves, except the lady who only touches the bottom of my cup and my debit card. Duh. I was even really careful that when I washed my hands, I accidentally opened the bathroom door after without using a paper towel to open it, so I washed my hands again, not so much because I was freaked about the germs this time — my freaking about the gluten has far overpowered my freaking about the germs. I was worried someone didn’t wash their hands and had gluten on them and touched the door handle.

Brain. Fried.

When we were done eating, it was time to roll to the movies, in the same parking lot. Thank goodness, because parking was a beast. Probably because we were going to see Transformers, and there were a bunch of Deceptacons or Autobots there in disguise. I have no idea if I spelled those correctly, don’t care. On the way across the parking lot, or maybe this was at Chipotle when D got up to go get a drink or something. Don’t remember. Brain addled from gluten.

Alright. One time, a long time ago, I teased writersblock in an email or something. I don’t even remember the context, all I remember is that it was one sentence. “You know, you could invite us to do something with just y’all sometime.”

WRITERSBLOCK: So are you offended that D came with us?
SARAHK: What? No. Why would I be? [Note that when we made plans the other day to go to the movie, I always knew that D was going.]
WRITERSBLOCK: Well, you lectured me that one time about how we never invite youse guys to do anything with just us, how there are always other people.
SARAHK: What? When did I lecture you?
WRITERSBLOCK: You said that one time, “You could invite us to do something with just y’all sometime.”
SARAHK: Wait, wait, wait. So one sentence… one measly little sentence… that’s lecturing?
WB [laughing at her inane self]: Yes.
SARAHK: Ohhhhh. So much is becoming clear now!

Oh, believe you me, I let her have it, then and throughout the day. Verily, as she would say.

SARAHK: My, [writersblock], you’re looking thin. “SarahK is always lecturing me about my weight!”
WB: Yep, just another way for her to lecture me about gluten.
SARAHK: And when I asked the girl at Chipotle to change her gloves? I guess I was lecturing the poor girl about gluten!
WB: I had to listen to SarahK give a ten-minute lecture to the Chipotle girl about the evils of gluten!
SARAHK: Hey, those are cool shoes! “SarahK is always lecturing me about the shoes I wear.”
SARAHK: Hey, in college you must have had it really easy. You could get through a two-hour lecture in like two minutes!

Poor WB, she’s probably feeling lectured through the interwebz right now.

So then we went to see Transformers. It was more than meets the eye! For reals. I felt so dragged to the movie. Every time Frank has mentioned it, I’ve been thinking, yeah, whatever, it’ll get me a couple of chick flicks. Don’t get me wrong. You know how I love my dumb action flicks. But I wasn’t looking forward to a movie based on a cartoon robot show that I barely remember at all and am not sure I ever watched. I only even knew who Optimus Prime was because J.D. and Turk painted him on the Turks’ nursery wall in Scrubs. Anyway, I loved the movie. It was funny, I liked the plot, I liked the characters. It was PG-13, and I didn’t notice the language being too bad. I did notice a few words and was really surprised when I got home and looked it up that I missed a few (I’m not complaining that I missed them, I’m annoyed with myself). But for a three-hour movie to be as clean as it was is pretty rare these days. Actually, my biggest complaints? The cheesy Michael Bay scene at the end (was somewhat inevitable and which actually was a lot less cheesy than I would have expected had I remembered going in that this was a Michael Bay film) and… the action! I mean, the military action was great, the shooting was good, the driving was fun, but the robot cage matches were too hard to follow. With all the cinema tricks where you’re supposed to feel like you’re at the Chevy Show, and the part of the bot that just got torn off has rolled right over your head, OH NO! IS IT GONNA HIT YOU?! and closeups of the gigantic robot fists banging into each other… Well, I never could tell which battle I was watching, who was fighting whom, and which robot just got smashed. So the dumb action part of the dumb action flick wasn’t the best part. But overall, great movie, I’d pay another $9.50 to see it again in the theater. Yes. It was $9.50 for a matinee.

After the movie, we went to the Kwik-E-Mart. To turn left into the K-E-M, WB crossed a solid white line (illegal in Texas, I assume it’s also illegal here) with a Sheriff’s deputy in the next lane. I was not about to break the law right in front of the deputy, so I continued past the light and went past the Kwik-E-Mart and made a U-ey. I explained this to WB, the whole illegal activities in front of law officers thing. Not a big fan of illegal activities to begin with, mind you. But a single white line? I’m not gonna lie, I’ve crossed them before. Inside and outside the Kwik-E-Mart, WB and I ran around taking pictures of everything while sherlock, Frank, and D found their Homer supplies. Frank got a Squishee and a couple cans of Buzz Cola.

After the Kwik-E-Mart, we trekked waaaaay up to Winter Park to Whole Foods Market, because I had looked up online today whether Orlando has one, and Orlando has one. And I was determined. On the way there, WB crossed a single white line, and I moved over into the new lane behind her, but I waited until the line was dashed, however briefly, before I made my move. My phone rang, and Frank answered and put it on speaker.

WRITERSBLOCK: So you won’t cross a white line to turn left, but on I-4, you have no problem doing it?
SARAHK: First of all, I crossed when the line was dashed, not solid. It was solid, then dashed, then solid again. Second of all, there’s no Sheriff’s deputy sitting right next to me on I-4.
WB: Is this Park? [PROFANITY] This isn’t where I want to exit. I’m distracted by the pho–! *click* [this is where she hung up on me]
SARAHK: I don’t know why she doesn’t get the concept of dashed lines versus dotted and officer sitting there versus no officer sitting there.

She called me back again to tell me when we were approaching Whole Foods, and…
WRITERSBLOCK: [PROFANITY]
SARAHK: HEY! YO! JUST BECAUSE I’M NOT IN YOUR CAR DOESN’T MEAN I CAN’T HEAR YOU THROUGH THE PHONE!
WB: Sorry. See you in a minute.

I wouldn’t even bring it up, because she did apologize, but I thought my line was decent enough to blog that part of the conversation.

We shopped. Frank yawned a lot. We shopped. WB, sherlock, and D looked bored. I was in gluten-free heaven. We spent over $100. I got so many different flours and gluten-free mixes that you either can’t get at Wild Oats here or is at least a dollar cheaper there. Plus more terra chips, a few other things, some organic pears and avocados. A couple of Larabars, which are the same price there as on Amazon, and a case is cheaper than Amazon. WB and I were impressed that they have a whole fridge of gluten-free baked goods. Oh! Also, I got 365-brand all-natural black cherry coke (and by coke, I mean caffeine free, color-free soda made with pure cane sugar instead of high-fructose corn syrup) and the same brand, same yada yada ginger ale. Frank pointed at the giant wall-art wheat hanging near the ceiling on the high walls and asked if I’m offended by that. Well, if wheat weren’t so in the Bible or I were a liberal, yeah, I suppose I would be.

We finally left after long hugs and I miss yous and came home to a very bad dog who got a faceful of cat claws right away for her bad behavior. And yay me. I put away groceries and wrote this super-long post just for y’all… all with my mild migraine, regrowing nerve pain, annoying seizures, and NOT mild bloating.

Dudes. I’m not even proofreading this, though. Sorry.

i must try this

Jenn has posted about Glutino gluten-free pancake mix, and she likes it. I’m going to trust her on that and order some (I’ve tried Arrowhead Mills pancake mix, and it was pretty good, and I have some Bob’s Red Mill in the cupboard to try, but I will try them all). Anyway, Jenn has good taste in the GF food. I’m pretty sure she put me onto Larabars, and I know she put me onto Chebe, which is good unleavened tapioca bread.

two new things

Terra Exotic Vegetable Chips (they have a really long name) and Almond Breeze non-dairy milk.

The Terra chips are so yummy. A little on the greasy side, surprisingly enough, but the flavors are great. Sweet potatoes, yuca (cassava), several other exotic root veggies in chip form. Love them.

I’ve been using the Almond Breeze as a milk substitute in recipes (it works great in everything) and tried the chocolate “milk” this morning as a drink. The chocolate “milk” was a’ight. I don’t like white milk, so the almond milk is a great improvement (it tastes like almonds, yum!). The chocolatey part was kinda bland and chocolate saucey. I like mine fudgey. Very picky about my chocolate milk. But I did like that it’s not very sugary.

anyone else have a problem with Cape Cod potato chips?

And this is a weird problem. I haven’t noticed any of my gluten issues when I eat Cape Cod chips except that they affect my mouth. No, I don’t mean they make my taste buds tingle–I expect that. It doesn’t matter what flavor I’m eating (I only eat the reduced fat and the salt & vinegar), but my mouth starts to feel really raw, almost swollen all over the inside when I eat these chips. Like I have one giant canker sore, and it’s the inside of my mouth. Gross, I know. I know it’s some kind of reaction, but I don’t know what. These are the only chips that do that to me.

Anyone else notice this?

I get a very mild but similar reaction from pineapple. Not so much that honey gold pineapple, though.

Serenity: Part II

SARAHK: I was about to call you a liar. Then I changed my mind and decided to say that you and I have different perceptions of “hot” and “medium”.
SERENITY: This salsa is hot.
SARAHK: It’s definitely medium.
***

SERENITY [right after seeing a HeadOn commercial]: I was thinking about getting some of that HeadOn, but I don’t know how to use it.
***

SERENITY: Frank, you don’t care that Sarah just tried to kill me?
SARAHK: I don’t know what she’s complaining about. I have like fifty more pounds to carry than she does, and the gun. [So I'd momentarily forgotten about her shattered ankle and severely injured spine. I'm a retard who never claimed to be a good friend to anyone.]
SERENITY: I didn’t know we were gonna go climb Mount Everest.
SARAHK: Yeah, because Florida has any hills.
SERENITY: Ok, I didn’t know we were gonna hike to the other end of the state.
***

SARAHK [pointing to the mushrooms]: Do you eat fungus?
SERENITY: Yes, I eat mushrooms.
SARAHK: Good, I use those a lot when I cook.
SERENITY: But not when you put it that way. Do I eat fungus.
SARAHK: Well, I have a friend who won’t eat mushrooms because they’re fungus.
***

SARAHK[to Serenity after Serenity comes out of her room following a super-long SarahK-stupidity-induced nap]: Hey.
SERENITY: Mumble.
SARAHK: My head hurts.
SERENITY: Mumble.
SARAHK: Isn’t that the first thing you wanted to hear when you woke up? Great sentence structure.
SERENITY: I actually wish you would have knocked on my door and woken me to tell me that.
***

SARAHK [we've just finished rifling through all my new Chebe mixes]: Yeah, and I can use this bread mix to make my communion crackers for church. Because I can’t have the regular church crackers because they have wheat in them, I’ll have to make my own. But this package even has instructions for making crackers.
SERENITY [amused]: You have to bring in your own body of Christ?
SARAHK: Yep. I did it the three months I was gluten-free before.
FRANK J.: Yeah, and they were like “our Jesus isn’t good enough for you?”.
***

SERENITY: That’s one thing you’re gonna miss about Florida is all the birds.
SARAHK: Yeah, but Austin has bats.
SERENITY: Yeah, that’s better.
SARAHK: There’s a whole bridge that they live under. So we can get rabies there. You can’t get that in Florida.
***

SERENITY: We should cage ‘em more often, I agree with that. But not for the shark’s sake. But cage humans, yes.
SARAHK: Definitely.
SERENITY: Hippies and liberals to start.
***

SARAHK: Now what’s to keep that shark from jumping over the top and into the shark cage?
SERENITY: It’s more concerned with the food they’re tossing out in front of it. It’s not really paying attention to the human.
SARAHK: But that doesn’t answer my question of what keeps the shark from jumping into the cage.
MELANIE ON TV: Blah blah blah the shark isn’t looking to cause any trouble.
SERENITY: See?
SARAHK: Suuuuure. You tell yourself that when it’s eating your face.
***

SERENITY [after seeing me eye her funny for chopping her Neiman Marcus cake into tiny pieces]: It’s cooling.
SARAHK:
SERENITY: It’ll cool faster!
SARAHK: [I love messing with people.]
SERENITY: What?
SARAHK: You don’t have to answer to me.
SERENITY: I’m not answering to anybody. I’m just telling you.
SARAHK:
SERENITY:
SARAHK: It’s better in big bites.
SERENITY: I’m savoring.
***

SERENITY: Don’t blog that. I’m just not going to say anything tomorrow.
SARAHK [laughing]: Yes you are. And only the private stuff is private now, because you told people that I tried to kill you.
***

SERENITY [to Frank J.]: Have you ever noticed that when she [SarahK] gets aggravated, she gets really southern?
SARAHK [amused]: I know. I do, he tells me all the time.

We had been talking about crappy corporations such as AT&T and the Bank of the Northern Hemisphere. They are evil, by the way.
***

You know what Serenity says a lot? “Will you let me finish my story?” You’d think I was an interruptor or something.
***

We were at Publix shopping for foodstuffs, and I had picked up one of those super-wonderful Dole honey golden pineapples. The cashier started chatting to us about the pineapple, and Serenity and I were chatting back. I didn’t know at the time, but Serenity said that the dumb sacker girl (not dumb because she’s a sacker–dumb because she needs a smack upside the head) had said immediately upon hearing the cashier start chatting us up, “She’ll talk to you for hours.” What a brat. Serenity completely ignored her after hearing that. I might have said something. Because this is one of my very favorite cashiers, just one of the nicest ladies you will ever meet. She’s older, has grandchildren, loves to talk to me about the food I buy. Asks me about ingredients I’m buying, what I’m planning to make with them. I love food people. Anyway. At one point, I did get to zing the girl (she can’t be over 17) whose mama didn’t raise her to respect her elders. I don’t remember how the subject came up, but she said something about “Mexicans.” Mind you, this woman has some kind of Asian heritage, I can’t remember which, we’ve talked about it before. I think Chinese. She wasn’t saying anything negative, she just happened to mention Mexicans. Little Brat Sacker Girl said, “Why did they have to be Mexicans?” I just rolled my eyes and looked at her. “Because they’re from Mexico.”

Kids are stupid.
***

SERENITY: What’s this shooting game called?
FRANK J.: Call of Duty 3.
SERENITY: And are there people shooting back at me?
FRANK J.: Yeah.
SERENITY: Ah! Then they will die!
FRANK J.: Nazis, even.
SERENITY: Oh. Then they will really die.
***

SERENITY: Ok. Let’s shoot some Nazis.
***

I Present to You: Our Groceries!
OR
twelve days

After worship this morning we stopped by our friendly neighborhood Walmart grocery store, the one that’s all groceries and less Walmart. Love that place. Still cheap, but with fewer screaming children and no clothes thrown all over the place.

Anyway, I got a kick out of looking at the groceries as we loaded them up onto the belt. Throughout the store, as I would throw something extra-super junky into the cart or point at it (I can’t reach the stuff on the top shelves), Frank would smirk at me or smile, shaking his head. At the standard two tubs of Helluva Good French Onion Dip, Frank said, “You know, a third of our income goes to buy this dip now.” Whatever, punk. Every time he gave me a hard time, I’d just say, “Hey. In twelve days I can’t have any of it.” And in twelve days, up goes the grocery bill.

Ok, so I was amused by what we bought. So here goes.

Tha Junk!
Grape soda (Frank. Yuck.)
Ruffles (reduced fat)–I think we still get to have the Ruffles on June 16th, but not the Helluva Good that the Ruffles are for, but I will be calling Helluva Good to verify. I may lay off it either way because of the corn starch.
Fiery Habanero Doritos–Bye bye on the 16th, so I’m stuffing my face as much as possible right now.
Nacho Cheese Doritos–Bye bye on the 16th (Frank’s. Bland.)
Totinos cheese pizza–I will miss this.
Totinos supreme pizza (Frank. Yuck.)
Michelina’s pepper steak & rice meal
Michelina’s cheese ravioli
Michelina’s corn dogs and french fries (Frank loves these) (2)
Helluva Good French Onion Dip (2)–I will miss this as much as Totino’s.
Burrito tortillas, huge size for chimis
Banquet corn dog meal with french fries, corn, and brownie, which Frank has now declared is super-awesome for $1–gone on the 16th
Orbit bubblemint gum

Tha Stuff That’s Supposedly Healthy But We Won’t Be Eating On June 16th
Arnold’s Potato Bread (contains wheat flour)–yeah, I get it, it’s not the highest fiber bread, but my last bread before the nasty rice bread that has a 7-month shelf life (until I learn to make bread) is not going to be plain old white bread and it’s certainly not going to be that stuff with all the grains and nuts in it that everyone pretends to like because the doctors and owners of bread companies say it’s healthy.
Sam’s Choice Tropical Trail Mix (made in a facility that also processes wheat)–I love this stuff
Sam’s Choice Indulgent Trail Mix (processes wheat)–too many peanut butter and white chocolate chips, so I’m ok with this going away
Chunky Soup, multiple varieties–I won’t miss this crap, it’s just been convenient during the fatigue and house reno
Progresso Tomato Soup (contains wheat flour)
Old El Paso Enchilada Sauce (I actually don’t know if this goes away, I just assume it does and don’t feel like getting off my butt)–I’m making chimichangas for Frank’s birthday tomorrow.
Amy’s gluten-free southwestern lentil soup, or something like that (mfg. in a wheat-mfg. facility)

Tha Healthy! orrr At Least What Isn’t Being Donated to Charity on June 16th
Nectarines
Serrano Peppers
Jalapenos
1 orange
Pine nuts
Shallots
D’Anjou Pears–stinkin’ huge ones.
Avocados–for the guac that will go on Frank’s birthday chimis. Oh look! I saved .58!
Strawberries
1 lime
Mahatma rice, does nothing bad to my body
Cilantro
Broccoli

Well. We already have chicken, fish, beef, etc. in the freezer. And spices and a hundred gluten-free flours in the cabinet. So. It’s not so bad that only 1/3 of the groceries are allowed in my diet after the 15th. It’s coo’.

Wow, that was fun. I should post more grocery lists.

stuff

Fatigue has set in hard. Muscle burning and aches. Pain all over the body in the muscle fibers.

But we’ve done much work.

In other news, the Dole Honey Golden Pineapple is AWESOME. It is the most wonderful, juicy pineapple, with a fantastic honey aftertaste. Also, the core is soft, so you can just chop that right up and eat it.

lunchtime inanity

*I can have the glutenous Clamato at this current moment in time. So I am (with a few shots of Louisiana hot sauce). This pleases me.
*I can also have my non-glutenous vitamins. Hooray for that, hooray for fish oil and B-vitamins, hooray for near-future motility and nerve improvements.
*I have almost finished The Summer Garden. This makes me sad, because I can’t find either of my copies of The Bridge to Holy Cross. I already re-read The Bronze Horseman, before I started The Summer Garden. But no middle part of the story. After we get the house all sold and get all settled in in Austin, I believe I shall buy a hardback (if they have hardbacks yet) of Tatiana and Alexander (the British title of The Bridge to Holy Cross, of which I originally ordered two copies from Australia on the release date) and read all three again. That is, after I have finished all six Harry Potters. Because the 7th comes out two days after my birthday, because Ms. Rowling wishes me a happy birthday.
*I fell asleep hard yesterday as soon as lunch ended. Fell asleep with my head slammed into my laptop (we eat on the couch with TV trays, and our laptops are on the arms of the couch). Today my forehead has a painful little bruise on it. Also, when I woke up from said nap, I could not cool off until this morning.
*We haven’t turned on the A/C in two weeks. I can’t wait to see what our electric bill will be this month. If it isn’t below $100, Blinky and I are going to have a serious talk.
*The internet is awesome. Especially when you’re in the DIY business.
*Saturday night I dreamt a film noir. You’d think that awful excuse for a movie Sin City would have put me off the genre forever. And Frank Miller, for that matter, but I have reluctantly agreed to see 300 with Frank, just because it’s violent and makes liberals become extremely unhinged.
*Today it’s your breath. Tomorrow the Supreme Elite Arrogant Court and the EPA will find a way to outlaw guns based on noise pollution or the amount of lead output from the firing of bullets. And I shall become an outlaw, because I believe in the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of 1911s.

i do not enjoy shopping

one day i’ll save up my pennies and hire a personal shopper so i don’t have to do it for myself. today i went to:
TJMaxx
Ross
BB&B
JoAnn
Pier 1
and finally Dockside Imports to find something for my large, tall bathroom wall so it doesn’t look bare and spare when we show it to prospective buyers. That’s after having already looked at Lowe’s, Home Depot, Target, and Walmart.

Oh, and I still can’t find a simple valance for the bathroom window. Why is it that all valances in Brevard County are sold in 72-inch widths? My bathroom window is 35.5 inches on the inside, so I don’t think I can make 72 inches work. And no offense to anyone who has them, but Roman shades just aren’t my thing.

I did find this wall art thingy at Dockside. I bought it before I could change my mind, then bought the 9 candles it needed for completion for $3 each at Target. I was still not sure until I got it home and held the wall thingy up against the painted ceiling. I think it’s going to be perfect. We’ll know tomorrow, because tomorrow we paint the bathroom walls and replace the bathroom light fixtures. Tonight we hang the wall art just so all the holes are already there, because there will be excess holes that will require spackle and texturing before we paint. No touchup painting; let’s just do it right the first time. So everything needs to be hung, drilled, caulked, spackled, plastered, patched, etc. before we paint.

Yes, this is the bathroom I was painting many months ago. Still only the ceiling is painted. And I decided it needs one more coat, so I’m doing that tonight.

I stopped at Lowe’s on the way home to pick up sandpaper and another Wagner Paintmate Plus so that Frank and I can both paint at the same time. I guess since Home Depot is so close to our house, we’re a little spoiled. We went there for a shower part a couple of weeks ago, and we looked lost, so a guy in plumbing asked if we needed help. We told him what part we were looking for, and he took us to the part, and when we told him we thought we knew what we were doing and kind of explained what we were doing, he told us why that was wrong and proceeded to explain what we needed to do and told us how to properly fix the shower. All this because we looked lost in the plumbing department.

Today at Lowe’s (and such is the case every time I’ve been at the Lowe’s in Melbourne, and I don’t remember how they are in Texas, but I’ve always noticed this at the Melbourne Lowe’s), I was looking for the sandpaper. I looked in the paint section and didn’t find it. There was a man in the paint section, and he saw me walk by him a couple of times, but he just stood there against the paint counter. Just leaning. Leaning. Maybe he was on a break. And I know I should have asked for help, but I’m like a man in that respect. I’ll find it myself unless someone does their job and asks the customer if they need help. I figure if he can’t be bothered to voluntarily help me, he is probably busy with something else, and I have feet and eyes and brains and can figure out where the stinking sandpaper is.

So I ambled to the tools. Lots of sandpaper, but this is all sandpaper that you put on power tools. No, I need the manual kind, and frankly, power tools scare me (not all of them, just the ones with gigantic blades), and I’d like to get out of this department, thank you. Several Lowe’s employees just looked at me in tools. And I was walking with my arms loaded, too. I hadn’t found the paint stick (they didn’t have a Wagner’s, and I know that Wagner’s works, because I have one, so I decided I’d get it at HD on the way home), but I had an extender thingy, paintbrushes not made of foam, and a corner painter that will screw onto the extender, exactly what I need for the one more coat of the ceiling. And I looked lost. On purpose, looked very lost. I hate looking lost. But I was so stinking tired and had been shopping for four dreadful hours and had had just about enough. Plus I could feel my food dragging through my small intestine. I can’t describe how that feels, it just feels like food dragging through your small intestine. And it was last night’s food, because it was around 5, and I’d not eaten anything all day. Irritable.

Ok, so up and down the front aisle I went, looking at all the signs. Nothing on the signs. Back to the tools. There was a shopper at the power-tools sandpaper with manual sandpaper in her arms. “Oh!” exclaimed I. “Where did you find the sandpaper?” She told me where to find it. “Thank you soooo much.” So I went back to paint. Well I couldn’t get my mind off my intestines and all the family news I got on my little shopping outing today, so I still couldn’t find it. I just would like some sandpaper, please. The nice Home Depot men would have already walked me to it, asked me what grit I needed, showed me the grit in each brand, and told me whether to sand the floor in clockwise or counterclockwise motions, Daniel-san. Finally I just went back to the paint counter where the Leaner was puttering around, doing nothing. “Excuse me,” I said very politely. He ignored me. Ignored! Oh, nuh-uh. You’re puttering and leaning, and my intestines lack motility. You will help me. “Excuse me,” I said very politely, more loudly. The Leaner (upper 50s, for those picturing the scene) looked up. “Yes?” Yes, you may help me. “Can you tell me where the sandpaper is?” Because I’m not sure you can. He looked annoyed, pointed, and told me I could find it all the way at the end of aisle 13.

I didn’t even find what I wanted. I mean, they had 220 grit sandpaper, but I found sanding blocks, and they had every single grit of sanding block except 220. So I got a 100 grit sanding block to make Frank’s work easier and decided I’d get the 220 when I picked up the paint stick at HD on the way home.

The HD experience was much better. I found everything right away (granted, I knew where exactly the sandpaper would be because of my Lowe’s experience) and went to self checkout, and the credit card girl who oversees in case there is any trouble just walked right over to my register as I was arriving and rang me up without my asking, much faster than I would have, because she didn’t have anything to do at the time. She didn’t just lean against her counter. Then when I set off the alarms as I walked out of the store (she’d forgotten to de-magnetize the paint stick, or whatever it is they do when they rub it against that pad on the counter), she jogged right over to me, fixed the problem, apologized, and told me to have a great evening.

“Thanks, you too!” Ah, much better.

Anyway… maybe pictures of the bathroom by Saturday.

Oreos

Mmm. Gluten challenge, thank you. Dr. Fresh Air, thank you. Celiacs not currently on gluten challenges, I apologize.

We were grocery shopping together sometime last week (together at the grocery doesn’t happen that often–it’s a housewifely thing that happens during the daylight working hours, but it was after a Home Depot trip, and those are very frequent these days, because we are truly serious about this whole moving to Texas thing, yee-haw). I saw Oreos. My brain made a quick calculation and realized that I am on a gluten challenge–again I say yee-haw. I’m telling you, you don’t realize how much you miss Oreos until you’re not allowed to eat them. Even though we’re not splurging on anything right now, I grabbed a bag. “Can I have them, even though they’re not in the budget? I have to eat gluten, you know. Doctor says so. Oreos have gluten.” It all flew out of my mouth at Frank in a projectile, right at his face. He knew what was best for his face: “Sure you can, Monkeyface.”

Saturday morning I was sitting watching Friday night’s Red Eye and eating the remainder of the Oreos, like normal people do. Frank sat down with his coffee and started talking about wanting some of the Oreos. And then he reached into the little carton (bag discarded) like he no longer treasured his sweet little fingers. I glared. He’s not on a gluten challenge!

I thought he got the message, but I got up and went to the kitchen to grab a Publix Ginger Ale to wash down my Saturday morning breakfast of champions. When I came back to the couch, there was ONE OREO LEFT IN THE CARTON!

That’s when I realized he doesn’t love me anymore. I didn’t even look at him. “Well. Can I have the last Oreo?” I asked him. “Sure.” SURE?

That reminds me. I need to call Dr. Fresh Air for my biopsy results.

And Frank owes me another bag of Oreos.

Oh! And this morning in the mirror I saw that I’m getting those fat wrinkle lines on my neck, which means I’m starting to put the weight back on. Yay, gluten challenge! At least we know it’s working. Seizures, migraines (somewhat), weight gain, nerve pain, muscle pain, gastric issues, heightened teeth sensitivity… yeah, I can’t think of any symptom that hasn’t returned.

Publix brand ginger ale

Much better than Seagram’s.

You can even smell the ginger when the can is near your face.

happy mouth

Mmm. So yesterday after my massage, I went straight to Wild Oats, where some of the customers are unwashed. Not all of them (like me–I shower), but some. Some walk in there so proud of their hippiness. Like look at me! I haven’t had a shower since Bush invaded Iraq, in protest of the illegal war! I won’t shower until we have socialized healthcare, and that evil poor-people-hating Republican over there pays for abortions for my promiscuous seventeen year-old daughter, since paying for my seventeen year-old daughter’s birth control on that socialized healthcare system that will totally destroy medicine in this country just isn’t enough for me! I refuse to wash, and that makes me so much better than everyone else!

Where was I? Oh yes. The reason for my post. Free ads. But see, it’s so easy to get distracted when I walk into Wild Oats, because I went to Wild Oats because I’m out of Pecan Nut Thins (by Blue Diamond, I like them very much, and it’s good to have gluten-free crackers on hand). But since I was already there, I absolutely had to go by the bars section. Larabars, Clif Nectar Bars, etc.

Glory! Clif Nectar Bars are on sale for ninety-nine cents! Oh yeah. They only had three left of my very favorites, the Cranberry Apricot & Almond, so I took them all. Hey, if the hippies wanted them, they should have gotten there earlier. They also had the Cherry Pomegranate, which I’ve had but was not too impressed with, so I passed on those.

My point. Here it is. There were other Clif flavors I hadn’t tried, but one intrigued me. Intrigued me in this way: there’s a 40% chance I’ll like this, and a 60% chance I’ll spew it from my mouth, but hey, a least it’s gluten-free! Lemon Vanilla & Cashew. On the one hand, lemon and cashews together, yum! But vanilla in the mix? Hmm? I decided to take my chances and buy two. If I hated the first one, I could give the second one to an unsuspecting Frank.

Yeah, he’d better not touch it if he values his hands. It was so good. So good. It tasted like a white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookie, but with lemon zest and a hint of berry added. It was so good that I called essay, who herself is looking for new wheat-free snacks, and left a message about it on her machine. Before I had even finished eating it. I was sitting at a stoplight, trying to finish ripping the package open, talking to essay’s machine on speakerphone with my mouth full of cookie bar.

Yummy.

“Places I’ve Been”

by Taylor Hicks.

Love it. Love it. Love it.

I love the whole CD, actually (buy it), but that’s the one. That’s the song that sticks with me all day and runs through my head. It’s the one they should never release as a single so they can’t ruin it.

This is why I don’t listen much to the radio. They ruin too many songs with their formula.

What was I saying? Oh yes. “Places I’ve Been.” That’s the one.

UPDATE: Umm… When we were coming home from worship this afternoon, I was reading the CD sleeve and I realized two things. 1) Taylor Hicks didn’t thank his AI fans (nor the judges, nor the AI machine — just a blanket thanks to everyone in Fox television — lazy and snubbish — but wait, lemme get to that in a minute). 2) I blogged about the wrong song. Don’t get me wrong, “Places I’ve Been,” the Diane Warren song, is beautiful and probably my second favorite on the album, but the song I meant to blog all warm and fuzzy about was “Just to Feel That Way.” But I’d just heard “Places I’ve Been” and got all confused.

“Just to Feel That Way.” That’s the one. The one that sticks with you and plays in your head over and over blah blah blah. Love it, love it, love it. Piano, vocals, drums, everything. Mwah. Oh, and the songs with the harmonica solos and the bari sax (pretty sure bari, and I love me some bari sax) are so much fun.

NOW. Taylor. Let’s talk about manners. AT the very least, Taylor, you should have thanked your fans. I’ll just come out and say it. You hurt my feelings. I walked into Publix all mopey and smushy-faced when I did my after-church grocery shopping this afternoon after I read your lousy excuse for thanks in your liner notes. Listing your webpage and your myspace page are not enough, Mr. Gray Charles.

Ok, so I didn’t vote for you every single week. But I voted almost every single week. And multiple dials! Not to mention the near-constant blogging. I don’t expect a “thanks SarahK, U R teh kewlest!” but come on. Not the tiniest mention of your fans who voted for you for months? Or even “to my fans” in general. Not even an overall “fans” umbrella. Not even your fans that listened to you in the bars over the last decade or so? How many years did you do this before American Idol made you into a smash hit? Yes, you are outstanding. You deserved to win. But you’ve been at it for more than a decade without going global, and after a few months of being dialed as the fan favorite, you are a star for as long as you choose to be.

I’m sure there will be a second album. Your first is a great start to what I know will be a long, successful recording career. Especially since you left off that terrible forced AI song. You’ll only get better, but you’ll do better to remember the people who help you get where you go.

And the whole AI machine. Ok, I don’t know all the behind-the-scenes action that occurred when you made your CD. I know you were not the chosen one, the pimped one. They didn’t groom you to be their winner, because AI didn’t figure they could sell you, and they were wrong. But look what happened with Chris Daughtry — they started trying to groom him to be the winner, and every time he sang out of his own style, people stopped voting for him (of course, that was, IMO, the best thing that happened for him on the show and for his career). Simon didn’t get you and didn’t really go for you most days — he’s a businessman in the business of teenypoppers, so he didn’t see dollar signs with you. I understand you not thanking him. Randy and Paula? Come on, they were mostly with you and gave constructive criticism when they weren’t “yeah-yeah-dawg,” and even Simon had tips for you along the way — and he wasn’t always against you. And the producers and the whole AI machine — to throw out a blanket “Fox television” thanks is so all-inclusive that it’s under-inclusive and underwhelming. And ugly.

Maybe the myspace page has an explanation as to why you forgot us. Me. Them. Our fingers. I hope it was an honest mistake and not a deliberate snub. If a snub, boo. Hiss.

Either way, bad form.
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this is so nice

My in-laws got me one of those Homedics shiatsu massaging back cushions for Christmas. It’s such a nice thing to have between massages. I did learn the first day not to push against it to make it work harder — that’ll give you bruises.

Taylor Hicks

I got the CD for Christmas. I like it very well. If I weren’t being forced to watch Miracle on 34th Street (I’ve avoided it for thirty years, why shouldn’t I be able to avoid it for thirty more? It’s not like there can ever be a Christmas movie as great as It’s a Wonderful Life. Hee.), I would listen to it track by track for you right now and tell you which songs I love and which ones I only like. “Do I Make You Proud” is not on the CD, so there are no songs that I flat out cringe and roll my eyes to hear. ;-)

I’ll tell you the ones I know off the top of my head I like:
Places I’ve Been
Just to Feel That Way
Soul Thing
Wherever I Lay My Hat (though I think I go back and forth between liking it and thinking it’s kinda hokey)
Gonna Move
The Right Place

Frank’s Dubya-2 is all packed up for the trip to Idaho

it arrived via UPS tonight. i didn’t even let him touch it. i had to take it out of all the boxes so i could put it in a backpack, because the Dubya-2 is flying carry-on.

i do not enjoy flying any more. i will not sleep tonight.

btw, if you have emailed me in recent days, i have read your email, and i have likely started a lengthy response and didn’t get to finish the email, had to save it as a draft and will have to finish it sometime when we’re in Boise. so please don’t think i’m ignoring you, i just hate doing short emails when i have so much more to say. you know how wordy i can get. ;-)

especially when there is a pigheaded doctor involved. you know who you are. :D

oh, these things? yummy. gluten-free. the apple pie and lemon bars are great, too, but the cherry pie are the ones i keep thinking about.

it’s worth it if it makes me feel better

Yesterday, Bikermommy and I let Frank sleep in until like 3 p.m. or something extreme (except for that part where he thought the water running in the bathroom was the washing machine, because the washing machine is in the bathroom, and who doesn’t lock the door to the bathroom when they have guests?).

We decided to go “into town” and shop a little, but Bikermommy was getting cranky without her lunch. I said, “Ok, but you know I’m trying this gluten-free thing just for this week because I don’t want to feel like crap while I’m on vacation if I can do something to help that, so let’s try to figure out a place where I can eat.”

Naturally, Bikey said, “Mmmm. Let’s go to Rosa’s Tortilla Factory.” I hate her. See, I’m not doing the gluten-free thing forever, just this one week (a stupid week to pick, because hello, no Braum’s malt, and no Rosa’s flour tortillas) because I’m on vacation and want to feel decent for once, and I want to enjoy Texas.

So we went to Rosa’s, because my ma convinced me I could have a tamal or two, and I wanted the hot sauce. I ordered two tamales and a crispy chicken taco. I remembered I love the chicken tacos at Rosa’s. So then Bikermommy felt the need to point out the fact that they were making the best flour tortillas in the world by saying, “Don’t look, don’t look!” and pretend-shielding her face from the tortilla-factory part of the tortilla factory. So I saw the tortillas, the buttery, soft tortillas, coming off the tortilla-maker thingy. I started mumbling to myself. “It’s worth it if it makes me feel better. It’s worth it if it makes me feel better…” over and over.

I went over to the salsa bar and looked for the cups for the salsa. Still mumbling. Still chanting. And Bikermommy had taken the last of the salsa cups. So I walked to both ends of the salsa bar, chanting, looking for the cups.

Apparently, I looked lost. Or, um… unstable. One of the people who works at Rosa’s walked up and said, “Um, ma’am? Are… you okay? Is there… something I can help you with?”

I looked at him with my blank, flour tortilla-craving stare and said, “Salsa cups.”

He said, “Ok, ma’am, I’ll find those for you right away.”

It’s worth it if it makes me feel better.

GEICO

i love the commercials. the new caveman one where it looks like a political talking heads thing is hilarious.

GEICO’s advertising guys – give those guys a raise!!

They’re always coming up with great stuff. Some of the dancing gecko ones were annoying, but ever since they got that British one, I mean, he’s just so cute, you can’t go wrong with a British accent. I like the caveman one, too.

And now, their latest? Love it. LOVE IT! They have a lady sitting there telling the story of her car accident and how quickly she got her check from GEICO. And they have Don LaFontaine, the movie announcer guy (“In a world where…”) who does so many of the trailers. He’s standing right next to her with headphones and recording mic and stand, and he’s repeating everything she says, except how he would say it if he were doing the movie trailer for her story.

I rewound and watched twice.

my frequent breaks

So I bought the ladder. It’s a doozy. I had decided on it before I ever got to Lowe’s. I’d done a couple days’ research, and this was it. I was done, this was my ladder, and no painting could recommence until the ladder was in my possession. The expense is considerable but justifiable, considering that we will never no never buy another ladder as long as there is breath in our bodies unless the cats manage to break it, as I’m sure they will.

This sucker does everything, and really all I want is one that will get me up to those ceilings so I can do the edges without bending over backward, doing the splits, feeling like I’m losing a game of Twister that’s being played on my ceiling. At the same time, it’s ridiculous to pay $120 for a clunky aluminum stepladder that goes up to 13 feet, gets me to 11, and is impossible to maneuver in small spaces. This one collapses to about 5 feet tall, so I can carry it without dinging every wall in my path (no really, you should see the walls betwixt the garage and the bathroom), plus if we need one to go to the attic, no more hopping up from the last step to actually get into the attic. This one’s tall enough and folds out to an extension ladder. And the best part is that I don’t have to move it as often, because you can stand on both sides of the stepladder. So I can paint the edges, go to the other side, paint more edges, then move. Beautiful. Frank and I can actually both stand on it at the same time. And I can work up on a plant ledge more easily. Yay! Gravy: If we ever need such a thing, it breaks down into 2 and we can throw on a plank and use it as a scaffold. Plus we can adjust the two sides of the stepladder to 2 different lengths for working on stairs. So it’s like that Little Giant Ladder thingy that I always saw at the Texas State Fair (and which Laura mentioned in the comments), but no annoying ads that I’ve seen, and half the price, plus I picked it up at Lowe’s.

Oh! Also, I can make it 5′, 6′, 7′, 8′, 9′, 10′, and 11′ as a stepladder, which is awesome. I can just pick however tall I want it. So no crouching because it’s too tall in spots (this actually happened to me once!). No overreaching because it’s too short. Our tallest ceiling is 12′, so we’re good to go.

One thing. It’s 50 pounds. That’s light, say ye? P’shaw! Funny, it’s getting lighter the more times I carry it, but I have to take a rest break after every carry. I carried it from entry way to bathroom, I had to take a break. Figured out how to work it, took a break. Carried it into shower, took it out of shower because I realized the shower needed drying. Took a break.

50 pounds for the SarahK is very heavy. BUT! No dings. I didn’t hit anything while moving the ladder. This is huge for me, because the other stepladder has scratched so many walls and doors. Seriously, I’m going to spend so much spackle time before I can paint any walls or doors in this house. Oh. Then I remembered to carry with my monster Popeye legs, which could once upon a time press 400 pounds in my weight training class, and I’m not lying (and it was only 8 years ago). Not so heavy anymore. Hitch onto shoulder and I don’t have to use Wimpy arms at all.

The ladder’s easy enough to work, but I’m going to wear gloves when moving positions. I’m ascared I’m gonna pinch my fingers.

Next week I’ll tell y’all why I hate this ladder. You know me.

parfait

i love the McDonalds parfait. with the blueberries and the strawberries and the cinnamon granola.

i can’t figure out the yogurt flavor. it’s not plain. i don’t think it’s vanilla. anyone know what it is?

deep water conversation

Rachel and I have such a deep friendship. We talk about very important things over email, world-changing things.

RACHEL: Lowes this week has 24 bottles of zephyrhills on sale for $3.97. Go stock up before they realize they’re less expensive than publix.

SARAHK: i don’t like zephyrhills. i wish i did, because it’s always way cheaper than aquafina. i loves me some aquafina.

RACHEL: I also prefer aquafina. but my office buys Z, so I’ve grown accustomed to it.

SARAHK: i bought a case of it once. i could drink it cold, but i prefer my water at room temp. because i can drink more water when it’s room temp. i made Frank finish it off.

i couldn’t even drink Dannon cold.

i like Deja Blue, Desani, Nestle, and Aquafina. My office in Ft. Worth bought Ozarka, so I got accustomed to the chlorine taste, but i really didn’t like the Z.

RACHEL: That’s so funny. I also prefer my water to be room temp. I keep it in the frig, but take one out and let it warm up while i drink one that was already out. I only like it cold when i’ve been working in the yard or something equally hot and sweaty.

Z has a bit of a weird taste to it. But i like the shape of the bottles.

Nestle has good tasting water. Sometimes my company buys that.

Ma bought me a bunch of Publix brand the other day. Tasted terrible. But I drank ‘em anyway.

SARAHK: I tried Publix brand once. Made Frank drink that one too.

We keep Frank’s in the fridge and mine at room temp, but I’ll drink his and replace it if I’m about to die of heat stroke, or if there’s no other water. It just takes me so much longer to drink it.

Yes, I don’t like the weird Z taste. And I prefer the shape of the Aquafina bottles.

I should post this email string. It’s ridiculous.

RACHEL: lol!

I took that to be permission.

i know i have said this before

Farley’s gummy bears are the best. But for some reason, I can only ever find them at Big Lots.

Indian River grapefruit juice

It’s yummy. If you live in any of these locations, you should look for Indian River Ruby Red Grapefruit juice. It’s in the refrigerated section and the sweetness is halfway between yellow grapefruit juice and ruby red grapefruit juice. It’s excellent.

They have OJ too, but I haven’t seen the Plus Calcium one in my Publix.

what’s on my mind

Got an email from Martha today (Martha of Hank and Martha from the cruise). Of course, I haven’t yet responded, because I’m bad, but I got such a kick when she gave me a message from Hank:  they had fish tacos this week, too. Haha, we were eating them for lunch when I read the email. Also, she called me her adopted daughter, so that put a huge smile on my face. It’s crazy how alike we are.

The goals. On the Saturday dog walk, we talked about needing to get a plan for getting out of Florida (hmm, I wonder who brought that up). The goal is to be writing for a living by the time we move. We’re suspecting either Idaho or Texas, since the next place we live is probably where we’ll have our kids, and we definitely want grandparents around.  So. This has turned into a strict schedule for me, because my #1 priority is getting the first In My World compilation edited, plus editing his short story that has received interest from a sci-fi magazine.

The schedule.  It’s strict but doable. The main reason for the strict schedule is to keep the dog on a strict schedule, but the benefit is that my days are mapped out so I’m super-productive. Tomorrow is the first day, and I’ll let y’all know how many minutes it lasts. Actually, I’m very committed, so I’m going to make this work.

Dog Yeller with SarahK. That would be the show if I were Cesar Millan. Anyway, yesterday morning we were lying in bed, and the phone rang. It was Vickie, my massage therapist. Her neighbor Vickie has a German Shepherd who pulls her all over the place, and she’s at her wit’s end, with tears and everything (sounds like me the day Rowdi made me chase her through the neighborhood and I was a big sobbing mess). So Vickie told her about me and said she should talk to me about it, because my dog is so much better now. This made me laugh so hard inside (I mean, she is better, but the thought of me being someone to go to on this is hysterical). I haven’t talked to her yet (she missed my call and is supposed to call me next), but I’ll of course tell her about the Gentle Leader, the Dog Whisperer TV show, Cesar’s DVD, and Cesar’s book. Maybe when she gets her dog under control, our dogs can play together (he’s a boy). All the dogs in our neighborhood are mean to Rowdi. The little ones nip at her nose and yap yap yap until she leaves, and the big dogs growl and bark. Poor bad dog.

Speaking of Cesar Millan. I quickly jumped ahead in the book (we received it the day it came out) to see how he got to the U.S. It turns out, he came here illegally (though he’s now legally here and working on becoming a citizen). I’m all kinds of against illegal immigration, but I did get a new perspective on it reading Cesar’s reasoning for why he had to come illegally. It had nothing to do with the U.S. and everything to do with the corrupt Mexican government. I’m still against illegal immigration, but now it’s not completely black and white for me. Yeah, I know, it’s one man’s account. But the thing about that man is that he learned English, doesn’t run around protesting with Mexican flags and throwing our hospitality back in our faces, contributes to society, and is not a tax burden.

On TV’s LOST.  I’m getting bored with LOST. Everything is a mystery. From what’s up with the island, to who’s cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs, to who Kate’s going to be in love with today, to who’s going to be stupid enough to ask Sawyer for help. There’s not enough action. Jack and Locke are fighting like a couple of females. Really, why don’t they just go out to the ocean and have that peeing contest. And quit acting like girls fighting over who gets to be captain of the cheering squad. The second most annoying thing about LOST, though, is that I’m having serious Rambaldi flashbacks. The ALIAS peeps never really knew what the whole Rambaldi endgame was, so at the end of season 4, they had the stupid big red ball making people evil. That’s it? Are you kidding? And now, the writers (and probably creator) of LOST don’t have a clue what’s going on with the island, so they make it like a Monday through Friday soap opera. Nothing happens on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday (hello, Days of Our Lives), so people really only get any entertainment out of Monday and Friday. Problem is, and this is the #1 most annoying thing about LOST, they only show it every 4 weeks or so. So one week we get a decent episode, then they’re off for 4 weeks, then 3 inconsequential eps in a row, then off for 4 weeks, then one decent episode… and so on. After the most recent hiatus, I had no desire to get back into it.

And on 24… I still think Audrey’s in on some bigger plot, the DHS lady (Mr. F) is evil, Tony’s not dead, and we haven’t seen the last of Walt’s widow. Oh, and the Chinese government – I’ll bet they figure out Jack’s not dead, if they haven’t already.

And in Melbourne, Florida, we got rain! It was fantastic, around 4:30 Saturday morning we started having major thunder and lightning, and the rain lasted a couple of hours. I was so happy to see the rain. And I’m pretty sure my Gerbera daisy plant outside was happy to see it too, because now I not only have the one big flower standing tall, I also have two new babies making their way up!

The weather today was fabulous. And we have mucho clouds, so I’m hoping this cooler weather will continue.

Gotta go to bed now. The new schedule says so.