Follow the Olives... (By Email)

Friday, December 4, 2009

What is the World Coming To?

As I traverse the very flat plains of Indiana yesterday, I pass a lovely high school. Outside this school is a sign board, one of those with the movable letters. And on this sign it reads:

XX HIGH SCHOOL
Annual Book Drive
XX City Barnes & Nobel

Seriously? Yes, go back and re-read the last line. It's supposed to be a bookstore, NOT an honorable award location. This sign is outside a location that is meant to education our children about a BOOK DRIVE no less. Something that requires literacy decides to send folks to the local book store focusing on world piece or what?

Be afraid folks, be very afraid. And please buy your children a dictionary and an AP Manual when they get to college. Cuz itz imprtant thad thez learnd to reed gooder!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

3 Dog Stories and a Side Note

Hysteria...for me anyway. I hope you enjoy and if you don't, I am sorry. But for those with dogs - I am sure you'll appreciate occasions such as these.

1) Olive V. Shower - Olive doesn't like to be alone. I realize completely that this is my and hubby's fault. We really enjoy our dog and she likes being with us. This means she doesn't like when we aren't accessible. One of these occasions - when I shower. She likes to jump up and peer in to be sure I'm still there. Our tub is raised so it's unlikely (and a little difficult) for her to try to jump into the shower. However, I don't think she'll be doing this anytime soon. This week, I was in the shower and Olive was asleep on the bed, or so I thought. Sure enough, I hear her little collar jingle into the bathroom. And then a big thunk! Right in the shower goes the shampoo bottle on the edge. This is all combined with a scrapping so desperate and a tail end of buff fur flying from the room. Poor thing must have bumped the bottle when she jumped up to check things out. Olive is now afraid of the shower. Awesome. Let me be the first to realize how super fun bathing her will now be. Needless to say, I've moved the bottle.

2) Maternal Instinct V. Anything Else - Olive and I go for walks now - it's awesome. We are blessed with lovely walking paths nearby. On a separate note, the hubby and I have at least brought up the idea of becoming a larger family. As most possible mother's, I've always wondered if I'd be good at it, will I have that "maternal" instinct, etc. Well - I've got that covered. There was a loose dog on our recent walk. I didn't know I had shackles, but I do and they went up. Potentially ridiculous, I know. In an effort not to scare the dog I didn't scoop her up and run like hell. (For those of you that know me - like running would have gotten me far, seriously?) I walked smoothly, pulled her closer and off we went. No exciting end, but I was incredibly proud that I had that reaction. She's great - my little pup for sure!

3) Olive V. DVD Player - Sleepy Olive tonight and as she's snoozing, I start a movie. The DVD player opens and closes - apparently this signifies attack mode. Olive went straight up and straight back about two to three feet. All while growling viciously at said DVD player. This machine of the devil closed and Olive came over to let me know that she had killed the beast. Ah, how strange our world must seem to the simple, amazing creatures that dogs are.

And a side note...
The holidays are coming (there's nothing we can do about it) and yes, it's only about five weeks until Christmas. When looking through some possible shopping items for my loved ones I added an item to my wish list. Suggestions pop up upon adding said item - I added a RR spatula set. The suggested items included, a chic-lit book (okay), a set of RR pots & pans and of course - what all true chefs, RR fans or chic-lit type folks need - the idiot's guide to pole dancing and stripping. Honestly, these are all related and connected, I'm sure. I'm just not sure I want to know HOW they're connected.

P.S. - Twilight opens in eight days - EIGHT! I am so excited!! If you haven't read the books, read them, but be sure you have access to all four and the time to read. It's absolutely addicting! I am a complete dork for them and know that, but don't care!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Cupcakes, cleaning and cocktails...


I'm officially the worst post-er to date! I've been off work for a week - an entire week. And guess how many times I've written!

Why, you may ask, have I not shared my bitter diatribes on job searching in an awful economy? Where is the detail on the trials and tribulations of deciding whether hanging with Olive on the couch requires a shower? Or better yet, what excitement lies in the kitchen beneath my recipe books and careful menu planning and grocery lists. Yet, even more concerning to the nation - what lies at the bottom of Hubby's closet as I clean out a year of clutter (okay that actually could be very entertaining...I'll keep you posted on that one).

No, I have not been kidnapped by wolves, nor buried by laundry - I've been resting. Sleeping, hurrying off to interviews, coffee meetings and of course, visiting my sister's new pad. And there is terrible news.

Between my sister's fabulous and stylish new apartment and her El stop...lies an amazing small, sweet bakery that produces unbelievably yummy cupcakes. Now they're not QUITE Sprinkles quality - which was incredible! Hubby and I visited there when we were in L.A. - I mean Oprah recommended it! How could we not?! But this tiny Chicago bakery is super good - they have a champagne cupcake. CHAMPAGNE!! I realize that anything with the nectar of gods is good, but really. This is just yummy and unlikely many locations not a gargantuan cupcake in size or price. Really about perfect!

Another recent discovery - almond-tini's. Amaretto and vodka, delicious - or I should say dericious (inside joke, sorry). Do not be confused though - not everyone can make this lovely cocktail... JUST amaretto and vodka, no other liquors needed. I haven't tried it out yet, but I'm guessing it's a two to one, respectiverly. Cheers!! Okay, well that's enough alcohol coated details...

Back I go to pound some pavement, clean the apartment and stamp up some new projects...and of course walk the lovely Olive, who by the way, is out cold next to me. Apparently having your "pack" home all weekend wears a gal out!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Leaves & Life Changes

So it's that time of year, the cooler air is blowing in, the leaves will shortly start falling. I LOVE this season. Hubby and I celebrated one year of wedded bliss this weekend, hooray!

We decided to stay in our apartment for another year and look for houses down the road. Another big change, I've given my notice at my job. A wonderful cause, an awesome experience and I know something fantastic is waiting in the wings. So I've entered the intimidating world of job hunting again. It's very likely that I'll do some consulting for the time being, so if you have questions or opportunities, please comment below and let me know.

Fall cleaning will likely follow my new availability and I'll be happily sharing posting duties with the hubby. As you may have noticed, he's joined the ranks! We figured that one site can suffice for our general life updates, random ramblings and updates on our always fabulous pup (who is nine months old now!!).

I'm thrilled to report that football season is in full swing, chili will be cooking and apple cider will be plentiful! Happy fall - enjoy the cooler weather!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Long time reader, first time poster....

Hello to all, the Hubby has arrived!

I just wanted to give an introductory post to let those dedicated followers of this blog, that I will be joining the party and I mean both of you! ;-)

Going to Hollywood this week, so I am sure there will be more posting coming soon.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Sad day

Sad news...lost my Grandma today. She was an awesome person. It's always sad to see someone go, but I know she's peaceful and not in pain. She's enjoying a manhattan with Grandpa and giggling with Aunt Helen (for the first time, Aunt Helen will hear Grandma's laugh!). What a day!

She will be so missed and I know she's watching down on all of us. We miss you Gram!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Im-PRESS-ed with a challenge

Deciding I didn't have enough to do with my free time...I decided to start a side-business. Yup, I've joined the masses of Pampered Chef, tupperware and MaryKay people as a Stampin' Up! demonstrator.

I am completely 100% geeked out about this (which therefore increases my geek-ability factor). I've loved their products for a while and used a BUNCH of them when making many of our wedding DIY projects. So why the heck not! Feel free to visit the page for details. So as I press down on the adorable stamp to craft my next project, I am impressed with the absolutely insanity that led me to believe I could take on one more thing.

Ah well...as long as I can keep Olive from eating the paper, it should be fantastic. Why in the world do dogs like to eat paper anyway? And where do they get it from?

I can clean up every tiny little piece of paper from the floor, put the garbage cans up and be sure we're all set and sure enough 30 minutes later Olive in innocently surrounded by shreds of what was once a piece of paper, tissue or bathroom paper. I think it comes out her ears sometimes!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

To post or not to post?


That is the life-long question. Our world is now so virtual, so immediate - what do we share that isn't already out there in some way?


I've been home sick for three days with an awful flu bug...not fun. I certainly haven't taken sick days, let alone multiple sick days like this in years. Probably not since my neck surgery. To be forced home by exhaustion and fever and to not be able to do things - laundry, clean, bills, etc. is EXTREMELY frustrating. I've never been one to lay around and do nothing. Relaxing isn't my specialty. Planning, cleaning, organizing - now those things I have in spades. And even my sick days, they aren't 100% do nothing - they're check email, voicemail throughout the day. Keep up on details, walk the dog, etc.


Are there people out there that can honestly admit to doing nothing at all? It's an art I'd like to learn a little better...relaxing is good for the soul. Or as someone told me today, guilt over being home is for pansies...and I am not a pansy. (Which made me giggle, because I then immediately envisioned King Julian discussing the "bunch of pansies" - which will only be funny to those of you that know and have seen the movie Madagascar. A funny one and must see in my opinion!)


Take smart phones - I recently gave in to the world and purchased a smart phone that allows me to see email and my calendar by phone. It's awesome, most of the time...but it either rings or vibrates (depending on your settings) whenever you get an email. When you have colleagues or friends that send early morning or late night emails, you can imagine how "interesting" this could be. Yet another piece of figuring out how to balance work and personal life, right?


So if you're not to feel guilty about taking personal time, but the immediacy and virtual world demands that you're always connected - is there a balance of the two? I'd welcome comments on how to achieve this - I certainly haven't figured it out yet!


On a side note...Olive has been great company as I've been home. A perfect cuddle bug!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Fireworks and fireflies

Do you think people are like fireworks?

Some are just plain loud and obnoxious and really serve no purpose at all while some are beautiful, colorful and full of sparkle. Some are shapes, smiley faces and hearts...some are squeal and scream and the best ones shimmer softly and make you smile.

This is the very first year that I did not see one firework. The weather was terribly dreary and there were no displays to be seen. The one firework or two we passed on the road, I missed seeing in person. I adore fireworks. I have very happy memories of family members teasing okay you say ooh, you say ahh, and we'll say ooooh! Friends have flocked to various fests and hillsides to douse ourselves in bug-repellent to walk home full of bites and itches but happily chatting away about which ones we liked best.

This made me think - I haven't seen one firefly this year either? I'm sure they're out there. I'm sure they're not extinct...but where are they?

Is the world so desperately devoid of sparkle? Between fireflies and fireworks, what brings the shimmer to July?

I'll be left to see the sparkly reds and blues in the faces of the neighbor with the cute dog, the smiley face in my puppy, the colleague full of sparkle, my friends that are beautiful and colorful and that special guy that is most definitely the slow shimmer that makes me smile.

Happy Independance Day to all! Thank you to the men and women that make it possible for all of us to enjoy these freedoms.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Blood Loss

Nope, nothing exciting like vampires or medical trauma. Nope - good ol' fashioned blood loss through...wait for it...mosquitos. I was outside for a whopping ten minutes and I have eleven mosquito bites. That's more than one a minute! How completely absurd.

I mean really, why do mosquitos even need to exist? They spread disease, not to mention misery to millions each year. Truly, when God and even Noah were making the big decisions on what stays and goes, how did mosquitos beat out the unicorn.

How did that conversation go?
So, you think we should take the beautiful, graceful creature with the unique horn? This animal can provide transportation.
Nope.
Okay, how about that small buzzing, annoying, bloodsucking pest that could infect dozens of animals and people with disease? They also release a chemical that causes irritation and large, raised, unattractive bumps.
Definitely. Gotta take that one. In fact grab two so they can reproduce - a lot.

On another bloodsucking note - if you didn't know this already. Twilight is amazing. I recently re-watched the movie and was reminded what a great story it is. Highly recommend! Had to throw in a minor vampire reference if talking about blood, right?

So on that warm and fuzzy feeling - good night to all - watch out for mosquitos!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bad Blogger and Bad Mom!

Bad new blogger! A whole month without a post! Eep. Sorry to anyone that was looking (not sure there was many of those).

A crazy couple of weeks with work and everything. But we're almost halfway through the year. I can't wait for that milestone. It also marks my six month anniversary with the new gig. Looking forward to that too. So thank you for your patience on my blog faux pas.

I had one big goal last night...My sweet Olive needed a bath tonight. Picture this - two full grown adults and one wet dog. Two competent, educated adults...soaking wet and covered in fresh scratches! But we now have one fully, fluffy puppy. Mission accomplished. We keep telling each other that she'll get used to it each time. Promises, promises.

However, I have to admit, she now has a bald spot...and it's my fault. In a fit of laughter and cuddle with Olive time, I laughed out a piece of gum. Into her fur. I'm a horrible puppy mother. I supposed I could force the blame to Hubby as he did cause the laughter. I was able to keep her still long enough to trim out the offending item. And then collapsed into laughter. Ah well. So take it from me kids - gum and puppies do not mix.

Our beloved puppy continues to prove her absolute worth as a paper shredder. The ultimate feat is that she has discovered the roll of toilet paper will in fact unroll if pulled on and streamed into other rooms. The best is Olive amidst a cloud of toilet paper, gazing doe-eyed up at you with paper hanging from her lip. Of course, it wasn't her fault.

Moving on...I'm so "that person". We've purchased a car-seat for Olive. She prefers to ride in the driver's seat. I.e: IN MY LAP...this has proved challenging for a number of reasons, not to mention incredibly unsafe. We're going to try it out this weekend and she doesn't love it so far, but I think it will be great.

And lastly, my husband is awesome. Hubby bought me a new camera. My old camera blew the flash! Remember those old camera's with the five flashes stacked up that were one use only? Yup, it was just like one of those! Not very useful for most shots. So off to photo taking, busy days and Puppy car trips. What an exciting life I lead.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

How many?

"Three"
So all joking aside, this is what I followed to work one day this past week. It made me giggle and picture that little cartoon owl crunching down on a yummy tootsie pop and decide that three was the magic number. I've always heard that if you bit on a hard candy before it's all soft and ready to be crunched, it means you're a very type A personality. So what does it say about my personality if I follow a truck full of them with no further incident for over 15 minutes?!

"Twenty"
I have a huge family. Not as big as some of course, but on one side I have something like 27 first cousins. That's a lot of people! So when we have a family get-together and our two bedroom apartment becomes the locale, you can imagine my slight concern that folks would be hanging from the balcony and police would be at the door demanding silence. Alas, no such excitement. Twenty attendees fit wonderfully in our home and we all had a good time. Lots of laughs, food and even a few bottles of wine. And at the end of the day a new friend for me, I think.

"Seven"
Nope, not the number of days until God created the world, although that is true and my congrats and appreciation! A minor ailment has plagued me since Tuesday - this has resulted in a call to the Dr., a prescription, a visit to the emergency room, another call to the Dr., an office appt. and two prescrptions... Apparently I'll be cured by Tuesday. At least I'm not part of the media and medical world craze of swine flu, right. Thank goodness for small favors.

"One"
And one great Mom, that I want to wish Happy Mother's Day to! Thank you for being an awesome Mom, always providing the essentials and so, so much more. For being a great mentor, leader and above all my friend! Love!!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

High heels and happiness

A great night! The event was a great success. The team did an amazing job. Completely seemless for our guests! And I think we broke a fundraising record for the event!!

My feet may never recover. I didn't even wear the high heels. I wore the wedge heels. Those are supposed to be better, right? Hubby always teases that they are meant to be torture devices and that he doesn't understand why women wear them...but nonetheless we do. And surprisingly enough after ten hours in them my feet hurt even the next day. But my legs looked better than they would have in flats!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Dawn of a new Kate

Professionally: first event as a team "manager" and not the direct planner. It's a different experience. To be part of the moving pieces and machine, but not the cog. I'm incredibly proud of the amazing work the events team has done and can't wait to see it all in action tomorrow. Just a new and different moment today being the one to sit back in the office and still be busy (of course) and helping with various pieces, but not the main point. Regardless, my team rules and the event will be a great night for all.

Personally: I'm that person. The person that treats their dog like a child. Hubby called me earlier today worried about needing to board our sweet pup since we'll be gone all evening - gasp! Yup, a night out without the pup!! I've decided that the dear pup can brave the horrors and ravages of her crate for the night. What with the awful cuddly pink bunny and terrifying sounds of her ticking clock and oh - horror of horrors, treats!
We'll just keep her out more during the day and give her a bunch of extra love. Hopefully the puppy Gods will forgive me!


For those that haven't seen, here's a picture of the doll! Her Easter haircut! There were two bows, but one didn't survive the quick walk home. (The other didn't make it much past this photo either!)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Phone Story (and a side note on the return of Dori!)

Dori is back! I was finally able to pick up my car this morning. Unfortunately, I have not been able to study the handiwork as it's pouring. But alas, I suppose April showers...

But on to the main event... Below is the one-sided conversation that I enjoyed the other evening. Our television, phone and Internet froze - went out and was offline for about 15 minutes. It then rebooted and was working again. Hubby felt the need to notify the provider so that we would have it on record, since we've had such impeccable service to date.

Hubby: Hello
...
No
630-555-5555 (our phone number)
...
No
...
No
...
NO!
...
630-555-5555
...
Yes
...
Technical Support...
....
technical support...
.....
technical support....
agent...
service...
...
live person
...
help.
....
No
...
Technical Support
...
Yes
...
Connection...
...
HOW CAN THE OFFICE BE CLOSED?! Technical support is closed?! It's 6:30 p.m. on a Tuesday!!!
...
Operator...
...
Technical support
...
Yes
...
No
No
...
NO
...
NO!!!!
...
No
...
Yes
...
(Conversation with the technical support)
We had an interruption in our connection to all services.
Yes, we've had service without interruption for four whole weeks (note we've had service since December, you do the math).
No we didn't change anything.
No we didn't do anything new.
No...
No...
(I take OLIVE(our fabulous puppy, who apparently could sense the tension) out for a walk, per bell ringing. Upon my return, Hubby is checking to be sure the other TV is working.)
Yes, everything is working now.
What were you able to do?
No, but what did you do?
...
Oh...so you've reset it then?
Okay. Thank you.

So what praytell did they need to do? They needed to reset our hardware's (system's) time clock. Because at 2:00 a.m. it occasionally does a random reboot to catch any updates or other needs. Why, you may ask, did this occur at 6:00 p.m. on a Tuesday night. Well...wait for it...the system is set for Samoan time. Yes, you bet, Samoan time - the thriving metropolis of Samoa. ** I am certain that this is because Samoa is by far the largest single user of technical services from this great provider and/or the number one purchaser of the hardware that would be needed for these services - so it would make perfect sense to be defaulted to Samoan time. Hubby was able to refrain from any damage to the technical equipment. Ugh!

**I mean no offense to anyone from Samoa or the nation of Samoa itself. I do find this an extremely ludicrous explanation from the provider...and thus comical too. I apologize to any Samoan individuals that are offended.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Origins

And it begins! I've been wanting to start a blog for months...realizing full well that I am not necessarily that interesting and it's possible, just possible mind you, that the stories and occurences that crack me up - they may not be quite so interesting either.

Ah well, it's worth a try. Worst case scenario is that some poor person will read this and lose a few moments of their life. I promise you an occasional story as well.

So please be patient as I post! Here's to the first!