And So This Is Christmas...

Various types of kielbasaImage via Wikipedia

Well, it's Christmas eve & it's almost time to start getting ready to be sociable. UGH! Yes, this evening we will be spending with my family. My uncle & his partner are in from Minnesota. The rest of my family will be meeting at my youngest sister's house at 6:00 pm for dinner & Polish traditions.
We usually start with sharing of the oplatek which is a very thin wafer-like square broken & shared with everyone to share good blessings & wishes for the new year. It's pretty much made of the same ingredients that a communion wafer is made of but it's a 5 x7 inch square. Then we sit down to say grace & all each a piece of herring. I know it has some meaning & I need to find that & the Polish spelling. When I do, I will let you know. LOL! We have a meatles dinner of pierogi (dumplings) filled with potato, cheese & plum, fish, kapusta (special sauerkraut with mashed lima beans) & dried plums & apricots. We usually have a few other thigs & dessert as well. After dinner, we sing Christmas carols, Polish & English & the kids will open their gifts. Then it's time to go to midnight mass, which is at 10pm because of the neighborhood or because we are! Those who don't go to church stay behind & cook ham & kielbasa (Polish sausage) for the after midnight meal when meat is able to be eaten. So, when everyone comes back from church, we eat & pretty much go home after that since it's usually around 1-2am.
On Christmas day, we go to my mom-in-laws house for dinner consisting of ham, chicken, sausage (pork & turkey), stuffing, turkey, potatoes, etc. There's a lot of food!!! Then since we exchange names every year, my hubby passes out the gifts. No, he is NOT dressed in a Santa suit. It would be funny, though...shhh, I won't tell him that! LOL. After all the fun is over, we all pack up food & all of our gifts & homemade cookies from my sis-in-law & head home to relax & digest.
I am so looking forward to Saturday when I don't have to do anything! I'll just be here reading blogs, email & playing mahjongg. That is my Christmas gift to me-Rest & Relaxation! I can not wait!
There is one thing my uncle told me yesterday that may be a gift for my whole family. He found out that my middle sis broke up with the idiot guy she got back with after making us happy when she broke up with him earlier in the year. Of course, UGH, they got back together but now we found out that they are no longer together. I certainly hope so. She deserves so much better & needs someone to take care of her instead of her taking care of him & his whole family. Anyway, I'm hoping it's a Christmas miracle. I will let you know, of course!!!

Well, I'm off to the bakery to pick up dessert & bread (that I had to wait a half hour in line to order yeaterday!). Then a nice bubble bath & soon after...The Peace, Joy & Love of Christmas! (cough cough) Sorry, I just choked there for a minute. LOL. Positive thoughts (& lots of cigarettes) will get me through.

Merry Christmas to all & to all Good Luck!!!

Using a Babushka to stifle myself,


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Twas the Weekend Before Christmas...

'CoverCover of Jack Frost

As of 1:00 pm this afternoon, I am done with work until next year! One of the very few perks of working for a school district. Finally, the day is here that I've been looking forward to.since the school year started I don't even care that our boss or our principal didn't spring for any party or gifts. As long as I finished my work & got out of there. That is what's important! It's better to leave than to receive. Or whatever the hell that saying is! LOL.
So, it's the weekend. It looks like it's going ot be a busy one with all the shopping we have to do. We don't have many gifts to buy. I think we have about10 people to buy for, not including ourselves. That shouldn't be too bad since we have an idea of what to get for each one. The usual hat & glove combo for mom & Ciocia (which means "aunt" in Polish). Toy trucks or planes for the boys. One thing I really wanted to get my dad is a peacoat. He used to have one years ago that he loved. He just happened to mention it a couple of onths ago, too. Unfortunately, it doesn't really fit in the budget this year & my one sister can't pitch in because she's been unemployed for some time now. Maybe next year. Babcia hates for us to buy her anything so we just get her a book of stamps. It's practical & she can always use them.
One gift that I am buying myself is an e-cigarette. It's an electronic cigarette that has a battery & a flavor cartridge attached. It tastes kind of like a real cigarette but instead of smoke, it's a water vapor that you blow out. The end even lights up like a real cigarette. The only thing in the catridges is the nicotine & none of the tar or carbon monoxide or chemicals. They have different strengths so that you can lower the amount of nicotine if you want to taper off & quit. And, since it is NOT a cigarette, you can "smoke" it anywhere. My daughter's former babysitter has one & I love it! She has cut down significantly. Also, no more smell of smoke or the coughing & hacking that comes from years of smoking. My non-smoking "friends" (I won't get started on that) can be around me & not worry that I am poisoning them with second-hand smoke. I'll just have to kill them slowly another way It's also a lot cheaper after the inital investment which is about $100( if you don't know somebody).

Right now the sequel to one of my holiday favorite shows is on. It's called "Jack Frost 2: Revenge of the Mutant Killer Snowman". The original "Jack Frost" (horror flick not Michael Keaton show) is barely ever shown & to even know that there's a sequel is just a thrill! If you didn't know, I love & was brought up on horror flicks. They are fun & entertaining to me. I mostly laugh because they are so unreal & bizarre. I haven't really been afraid of horror flicks in a very long time. The only one that used to scare me was "Salem's Lot" because of the eyes of the head vampire. Freaky glowing or red eyes used to bother me, but now they don't bug me so much. I suppose, after a while, you become immune to the things that used to be so horrible. Well, on screen anyway.

Well, I'm off to watch my holiday classic! Jack has amazing skills using icicles...LOL! Bloody good fun & more my taste for the Christmas season. I will be back next week (I hope) to send you off with lots of holiday cheer & to let you know if I have finished my shopping! Take it easy this week. We still have the new year to conquer!

Babushkas on Snowmen,


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Happy Holidays or Bah Humbug?

Ebenezer Scrooge's gravestone, ShrewsburyImage by HowardLake via Flickr

Well, Thanksgiving is over (WOOHOO!) & the holiday season is in full swing. Except for the fact that it is December 3rd & we have no snow (again, WOOHOO!) as of yet. Yes, they are calling for some flurries & snow showers during the week, but nothing to be worried about. In fact, just the past week has been chilly. We have had temps near 60 & above pretty much all autumn. I am enjoying the hell out of it. As you know, I absolutely hate & dread the winter season. The bitter cold, blizzard-like snow & the incredibly slick & dangerous ice that we deal with here in Michigan makes me want to hibernate until the temps hit 60 once again.

The weather is not the only dreaded thing about this time of year. All the shopping for gifts, finding parking, & pushing & shoving makes it seem as if selfishness has taken over. The news shows people physically fighting over the last popular toy that "my child has to have". Thieves are hiding around every corner watching & waiting until your arms, full of bags & boxes, are emptied into your trunk so they can knock you down to take your car with all the gifts that you worked so hard to save & scrimp for. The usually pleasant salespeople, that have been working many hours with angry customers who can't find what they want, are cranky when you get to them because there's no tag on the item you want & they have to search for a price.

Last, but certainly not least, we come to spending time with the family. Some we see all year long. Some we see during the year for events & get-togethers of sorts. And some come from out of town only a couple of times a year. It seems to me that the ones from out of town are the ones we'd rather see more than some we have closer to us. We are forced to make nice to others because "they are family" or "it's the holidays". Wouldn't it be nice to be able to be honest? So it hurts someone's feelings. I didn't ask to share my holiday with certain people. I would like to enjoy the holidays without any drama or negativity. I want the smile on my face to be genuine. I think if we could just eat & go, I would be very happy! But, it's not to be. I will be one of the few stuck cleaning up & being pushed out of the way so others can have their fun. The funny thing is, I'd rather spend time with my in-laws a during the holidays than my own family. Now you know I'm strange!

Well, I'm really tired because it's late, but I'm going to post this. It's how I feel most of the time during the holidays. The one really good thing about the holidays is having 2 weeks off from work. It's nice to work for a school district!

SO, how do you all REALLY feel about the holidays? MUHAHAHAHA

Hiding Behind My Babushka,


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The Way You Make Me Feel-(Michael Jackson not mentioned in this post)

Hopeful JackalopeImage by Mykl Roventine via Flickr

Well, it's kind of late but I just felt like posting. I don't have any specific topic or important news to share. I have so many things running around my head & I figured that I should get some out of there before they cause any trouble! Some thoughts just weren't meant to be locked together for very long. I suppose it's like a slow chemical reaction that can blow at any moment! (really don't need any exploding brains around here). You never know what's creeping around foraging for food. (possums, ratalopes, zombies)
You have questions about the ratalope, I see. It's actually a local mythical creature. I have only seen a stuffed one at a bar here in the city, but I have heard stories. The only one in captivity (although stuffed) resides at a bar called "Whisky in the Jar". This is where you can learn the history & legend of the Ratalope. The pic at the side is a jackalope which they say is a cousin of the ratalope.
Lately, I've been reading a lot of blogs. I have subscribed to so many that I just can't keep up! Of course, I do have certain ones that I try not to miss as I have met some wonderful people & made some new friends.
I believe that's what blogging is all about. To me it is anyhow. I have always liked writing since I was in grade school. A freind & I would write stories, together & separately. They were mostly the teenage "boy meets girl" stories to start with, but we wrote what we enjoyed reading. I like to think I do the same here. I write with the feelings & emotions of everyday life. I read & write what interests me. I need to feel what the writer is saying. I want to feel that I've been there or seen it. I've laughed so hard that tears rolled down my face. I've been so angry that I wish I could have been there to back a person up when they had no physical support. I've cried my eyes out when someone has poured their heart out in agonizing pain. And I've tried to be a rock, giving strength when someone is paralyzed with fear.
I know my blogs have yet to rise to that level of emotion, but I hope, when they do, others will be able to feel it through my writing. I am a very passionate person. (read: moody, bitchy, psycho) I can keep my moods in check-most of the time. Although, work can be a bit challenging when it comes to me being cool as a cucumber. And, it's not the kids that try my patience most days.
Anyway, as I said earlier, I've been checking out a lot of blogs, finding new ones everyday that I want to follow. I need to make a schedule to make time to do everything I need to get done on the computer. I've been avoiding ignoring trying to get to my emails as much as possible . I have a lot to read & delete.

I did happen to read "Blogs of Note" earlier today on Blogger & saw a certain blog that I found rather...different. In fact, I found the images a bit disturbing even though I understand the concept. I am praying that I do NOT have nightmares of these "designs". I will, however, leave you with a link, so that those of you that are adventurous (sadistic) may want to check it out. It's called 15 Shapes. Have fun & sweet dreams!!!

Covering my eyes with my Babushka,


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Not Looking Ahead

Mendon Ponds in a BlizzardImage by Dalboz17 via Flickr

Not too much going on around here lately. I've just been working, reading a lot, (mostly blogs, of course) & enjoying the few nice days we have had with 60 degree temps, when it's not raining.

Today was gorgeous outside. It was pretty cloudy & gloomy in the morning, but by 3 pm it was mostly sunny & in the low 60's. I really needed that sunshine. I am not looking forward to the dismal gloom of winter.

The leaves are almost completely changed & falling off the trees at a rapid pace. I remember the spring, when the sun was starting to get a touch warmer day by day & the buds were beginning to sprout on the tree limbs. It was a time of promise of new life to come & warmer days to chase away the gnawing cold of winter. (Yes, gnawing-Winter BITES!)

So now with these last teasing days of soothing sunshine, I find myself dreading the long, cold winter. Hanging on to the warming rays that stream through my windows, I close my eyes, taking in the life-giving energy that seems to be for me alone. To remember this, in the depths of the frozen season swiftly on its way, will give me the strength, I hope, to endure another seemingly endless winter season.

With my babushka, as always,


Psst...Hey, don't forget to scroll all the way to the bottom & check it out! Pretty cool stuff! MUAH!

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Snow is a 4 Letter Word

The Dollhouse CastImage via Wikipedia

Well Hello Everyone! Sit right down & you'll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful trip...screeeeeccchhhhh! Oops! Wrong tape! LOL! And, I KNOW you would NOT love to hear me sing, but, uh, maybe some other time. Have to save my voice to yell at say good morning to the lovely children in the morning at school. (damn, monsters, that's what they are...grrr!) Now, now, ahem.
As you can see by the time that has passed, I have been avoiding very busy. School is in full swing & I'm back to my usual schedule of work, stopping to visit Babcua & picking up my daughter from school. After that, I either go back to Babcia's to do some things for her, make dinner, do laundry, etc. In the evening, the shows are back on their fall schedule with new episodes & some I just can not miss. Survivor is back on. Not sure who I like yet, but I can't stand that oil business guy, Russell! I know you do what you have to in the game, but he is a very mean & nasty little man. I watch "So You Think You Can Dance". The city tryout are finally finished. Now on to Las Vegas where they pick the top 20 for the show. I just love watching the choreographed dances. Last year, there wer a couple of dances that were just so powerful in their stories. One was about addiction & one about breast cancer that just made you feel as if you were going through it! Truly amazing! "Lie to Me" & "Fringe" are another 2 shows that I really like. They premiered last season & the stories are not like any other that have been on before. I hope they stay on for awhile. On Friday, I have to see "Dollhouse" with Eliza Dushku. The storyline is a pretty scary one that makes you wonder if this is or could be already happening. If you check any of these out, let me know what you think.*

Sometimes I think I watch a little too much tv. I watch the news a few times a day. I wonder if I should be watching it at all. The news is just so damn depressing around here. Crimes, financial problems, government screwing around with our lives...And now the worst of it, always around this time of year...I really can't even bear the thought or the mention of it...UGH. Ok, don't say you weren't warned & do NOT let the kids hear. SNOW! ARRRRGGGHHHHHH!!!!!! Yes, I know. I'm so sorry! They brought it up on the news the other day. I know it's unavoidable. But did they have to say it so soon? I can't afford to get a place to stay for the winter. Unless...Quirky? You live where it's warm, dontcha? HUH? Some of you live in much warmer climes. I would just love to meet all of you. Perfect time to visit my southern friends. And if anyone likes the cold & snow, come stay here. I would gladly trade until about the beginning of April.

There are only a few things to learn about living in Michigan, or specifically near Detroit. We call "soda", "pop". To show someone where we live, we put up our right hand, palm facing us & point to a spot somewhere between the knuckles of the thumb. Even though we are just across the bridge from Canada, we still make fun of them, eh? (ok, it's not PC but it's funny) This one is very important. When it snows, if someone shovels out a spot for their car of puts a chair in the spot, do not park there. Legally, they can't do that but no one complains. It's just supposed to be common courtesy (or Not much except to have fun. There are a lot of bars & drink prices are cheap if you hit the little places that look like a dive. At one time, I believe it was during the '80's, Hamtramck was in the Guinness World Book of Records for most bars in an area. Hamtramck is 2.2 square miles. I don't know how many bars were open at the time, but there are still enough that you can walk to & get drunk & not need a ride home. You may need someone to roll you to your door but I can't say I've ever heard of a designated walker.

As usual, my post went off course from my original idea. It will just have to be my next post. Remind me though, because it was a very important one on body odor. NOT! LOL!

So, we'll chat soon. I'll invade your blogs. I may lurk. I may give some of my sought after wisdom. You never know.

And one last thing, when in Michigan, The Polish Muslims are a popular band, not a religious group!


Bundling up in my babushka until someone sends me to the tropics,


* Opinions & statements of tv shows are my own. I have not been paid or asked to do them by anyone.

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Obsessing About Obsessive Obsessions (Are you kidding me?)

Detroit Red WingsImage via Wikipedia

So I am behind, as usual. Not surprising, but I always get tied up doing something or other & then things get forgotten or get done when I "get around to it". Of course, I will drive myself crazy with all the stuff I have to do or should do or meant to do. Pieces of paper & notes are everywhere. It's Post-It Pandemonium!

It is time for me to get one of those things done that I have been putting off. I have not forgotten.

Over a week ago, I received a fabulous award from a fabulous friend of mine. Here it is:

I would like to thank the fabulous Mom Zombie for presenting me with this award. (I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy!) It's a stunning award & I am proud to add it to my blog.

The requirements for this award are to post the award on my blog, linking it to the presenter. Next, I must list my 5 (yes, only 5) biggest obsessions. Lastly, I must pass this award on to 5 other worthy bloggers. So, here are my 5 biggest obsessions, not in any particluar order:

1. The Detroit Red Wings. I really don't care much for sports. I don't watch sports on tv except for hockey. I've been to a few local sporting events in my life just to say I've been there, I guess. But when it comes to hockey, or more specifically, the Red Wings, I love watching the games on tv. I'd much rather go in person, but they're so expensive. I collect anything Red Wings. I have 3 game jerseys, one red, one white & one black. (not authentic, worn game jerseys but they are the "Starter" brand) I have shot glasses, regular drinking glasses, & a frozen mug, pajama bottoms, shorts, jackets & too many t-shirts to count, not to mention other miscellaneous items that normal(ly) people would not have.

2. Reality TV. I think it started with Survivor or Big Brother. In any case, those are 2 shows I still watch to this day. Even though I know that these shows are NOT completely reality, I still like to believe the premise of the show. A few others that I have come to enjoy are: SO You Think You Can Dance, American Idol, Rock of Love, LA Ink. I even liked Paris Hilton's BFF shows-GACK! There are some I just can not handle though like most of the ones on MTV & VH1. These are usually spin-offs from another show & & are just terrible & somewhat disgusting at times.

3. Office Supplies. I think this is the obsession I have had the longest. I can remember collecting pens & paper clips when I was in grade school. Put me in an office supply store & I will have boxes of stuff I just "have to" have. In fact, just last week, I received a couple of special pens in the mail. They are a dark green click pen with a rubber grip & write very smoothly. Where did I get these cool pens from? From Nanny Goats in Panties (N.G.I.P.)! They are my favorite pen of the moment.

4. Shoes. Need I really say anymore? Yes, I think I will! I guess I am a typical woman in this way. I love shoes. I love shopping for shoes. My feet don't change size when I gain a few pounds. I really couldn't say how many pairs of shoes I have because I have them all over the place. There is no "one" place I could store this many shoes. I laugh at shoe racks & bags. I guffaw when I see the "Shoes Under" commercial. I ROFLMAO when asked to pack shoes "for the weekend". I wonder if I am related to Imelda Marcos.

5. Blogs. Last, but not least, I am obsessed with blogs. Not with blogging, though I wish I would post a bit more. It started with reading just one. And as I decided I wanted to start a blog myself, I started reading & subscribing to more. Then, somehow, I found the Blog Catalog & signed up there. One day, I read "Crotchety Old Man Yells at Cars", loved it, & checked out Humor Bloggers Dot Com. From there, I started reading blogs from everyone's blogrolls & subscribing. Now, I have so many that I probably couldn't read them all in a week. I'm so obsessed with them that if I don't read some for awhile, when I finally get to them, I have to read all the previous ones just to "catch up" on what's been going on. It drives me crazy, which isn't a long drive for me at all!

So, those are my obsessions. I hope you got through them somewhat sane. And seeing that I have to name 5 bloggers with fabulous blogs, I shall present them to:

1. Kelly at Chains of Yesterday. Just recently started reading this one & love the openness she writes with.

2. Chrissy at I Shoulda Been A Stripper. Her blog is fun & entertaining. Oh okay! It's because I love Bernie!

3. Reffie at Confessions of a Reforming Geek. Geeks (reformed or otherwise) are fun people!

4. Quirky at Musings of a Quirky Loon. The lovable antics of a looney quirky mom & her family.

5. Moooooo35 at Mental Poo. I never know what to expect when I open this but am never too surprised.

Thank you for stopping by & sharing my award with me. Awards are never as much fun if you can't brag about share them.

Polishing the award with my babushka,


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Menu du Jour-Turkey-Spam & Turkey Jello

Image by keltickelton via Flickr

OK! It's been over a week. I figured I had better get in here & do some posting before anyone misses me! LOL! So...Did ya? Miss me? HUH? I thought so! Well, I missed you, too! (((HUGS))) Wow, that was a big hug. Thank you. I am much better now. That last post was a doozie, wasn't it? If you didn't read it, please, check it out now here.
Anyway, school started back up on Tuesday, September 8th, which means the cafeteria is OPEN! harumph! grumble, grumble. If you don't know the reason for my grumbling, it's because I work in our high school's cafeteria.

Lunch Lady

Yes, I am a lunch lady cafeteria aide. Contrary to popular belief, I do not wear a dress or support hose. We wear black pants & a maroon polo shirt. I do wear a black apron so I don't get food all over me & because I keep all my crap in my pockets. If I don't have a purse, I must have pockets. Like my purse, I carry everything including the kitchen sink only the essentials. We can wear tennis shoes or black non-slip shoes, but I just wear my comfy, black clogs. Although, somedays I feel the need to wear steel-toe boots. Those pans can be very heavy & HOT! On our heads, we can wear a white paper bonnet (UGH!) or a hair net. The nets aren't too bad because we get them in 2 colors: dark brown or dark blonde which pretty much matches my hair color. I prefer to wear the net over my perfectly coiffed hair ponytail rolled into a bun. It's much cooler.
Now I know everyone has seen the stereo-typical, slop-serving lunch lady behind the counter. There are days that I have stood & served food from behind that steam table. I have also run the cash register, which is actually a computer on a steel cabinet with the cash tray in the drawer. But, my job this year is to work the deli area or what we call "Sandwich Central". We make fresh sandwiches on a variety of breads. Since the school consists of around , maybe, 70% Muslim kids, we rarely use any pork products. Pretty much every meat is turkey-based. The only pork we use daily is pepperoni on the pizzas. This angers quite a few parents because the school district, well, pretty much the whole city, caters to the foreigners immigrants. But I digress, & that is another story within itself. So to continue...The lunchmeat we have is roasted turkey, turkey-ham, turkey-salami & turkey-bologna. Uh yeah, a little turkey overload. It's really not that bad. The taste is pretty similar to the "real" stuff. Then, we have cheese, lettuce & mild peppers.
Our cafeteria is pretty much your typical, dated public school lunchroom. It's on the 2nd floor, which makes it terribly hot during the warmer months here. We do have an elevator, thank goodness, to transpot our stock from storage or deliveries downstairs. Fairly often, we have to bring our own supplies upstairs ourselves as we don't have a stockboy. Sometimes, if we're lucky & he's having a good day, our delivery guy will bring things up. It really is part of his job, until they can find someone who will deal with crap & his attitude, but he believes he works too hard already. He delivers the food already prepared to the other 6 schools in the district. Mind you, our city is only 2.2 square miles. But, here I go, off on a tangent again. I hope you don't mind. It does tend to give a boring old story little bits of flair, I guess. All the school buildings are fairly old compared to many schools around nowadays. Our building was formerly the middle school until 1970 when it became the high school. I don't know what year the building was erected but my babcia went there when it was the middle school & she's 92. Now, my daughter is a junior there.

I suppose the job isn't too bad in itself. My hours are from 8 am to 1 pm. School lets out at 2:48 pm, so I get a little time in between to check in on babcia. I usually go back later on to bring her anything she needs picked up, take care of things she can't do, or mostly just to visit & talk. I absolutely love the stories from when she was growing up. Do you remember the picture of Rosie the Riveter? The woman in the blue jean shirt, raised fist, with the red bandana on her head? My babcia was one of the women who did the riveting on the planes! I am so proud just to say that she was Jessie the Riveter!

Back to job part of post...So, the hours are great, but the pay is awful, compared to other districts. We started out at a little over minimum wage, which went up to what we were starting off at & caps at less than $2 more, no matter how many years you work there. Now you know that a lot of lunch ladies are lifers so this blows a big old horn, to put it nicely. That's what you deal with when there is no union. But, I try to remember that I am blessed to have a job these days. It is within walking distance if the need should ever come up.

Once again, this is not the post I was going to write. But work can provide wonderful blog fodder. And, if you didn't notice, once I begin rambling, on & on & on, I can't seem to stop the force.

I hope you enjoyed the post. I hope you will visit again. And, if you have any comments, questions, or just want to shoot the shit, ramble on!

Thinking of using my babushka as a work bonnet,


P.S. Please scroll down to the bottom. I have some pretty cool stuff down there! Like an xtra comment box in case the usual commet section isn't working correctly. Thanks!

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Warning: Tears May Short Out Your Computer

A toddler girl cryingImage via Wikipedia

Don't be afraid! Everything is just fine. Calm down. Chillax! Whew!
Now that even breathing has been re-established, I can begin.
I would like to apologize for freaking anyone out. I know that I don't write posts this close together, but I was inspired earlier today by a post from Mom Zombie . This post was about sisters & it really brought some feelings to the surface for me.
Usually when I write, it's about things that are going on in my life, but nothing overly personal. Maybe I'm just starting to feel more comfortable about sharing feelings online. In reality, I am a pretty emotional person. Not that I cry at the drop of a hat (like I used to do), but lately I have been crying a little more, being irritable, moody, etc. I don't know if it's peri-menopausal or that summer is ending or something totally different. I have been peri-menopausal, I suppose, for a few years now, I think. I have to make a doctor appointment to get my hormone levels checked. I guess that's what they do to determine peri or full-blown menopause. I have been on the depo-provera shot (birth control) for a long time & I do not get a period since I'm on it. So I have no way of telling with my periods. Also, I have been on medication for anxiety for over 10 years. I am now on Lexapro & it has worked the best for my panic/anxiety attacks. Unfortunately, I have almost ZERO sex drive! Not that I mind but, my poor, dear hubby (ok, I feel a little bad for will not leave me alone. Sorry to those who want it more.
Hmm...that was not what I wanted to post about. But, once I started typing, I guess I felt I should give a little bit more of a behind-the-scenes TMI info. So, I might as well share that...drum roll please...I am a recovering alcoholic that on November 21st will be sober 8 years. I had to toot my own horn a little there. I don't give myself a lot of credit most of the time. I'm a very self-conscious person who would rather put herself down than take compliments. And after being in many relationships where I was cheated on, put down or dumped, I still, after almost 17 years of marriage to a good man, have serious trust issues. I say that it's not him that I don't trust, but other people who would drag him down into something, immoral or stupid. But in reality it would be up to him to make the choice, wouldn't it? He has never done anything to really make me mistrust him. I think, hope, pray, that it's my own mind & past that brings these feelings up way too many times.

I have shown my insecurity with him many times over the years & he just gets pissed off most of the time. It's always the "You don't trust me?" thing. And, I say, Yes, I trust him, BUT... Then I hand him the same old excuses. He can't understand why I still can't get rid of these old insecurities when he wouldn't do that to me. In my mind, I feel it can happen. There have been a few instances where he has been a little more than just friendly with others. Not anything that anyone would construe as wrong, except me. Because I know him. I know that it takes him a long time to get comfortable with people. He is not a very warm or open person on the outside if you don't know him. Lately, he is becoming more social, if that's how you want to put it. I don't go to the bar & hang out anymore. He goes to the bars around here. My dad & other guys are usually hanging around. He has always liked to people-watch but lately it seems that he is getting a bit of a roving eye & when I am not around, I fear the worst. I feel like I'm not good enough or ugly & he sees something better. He tells me, "I come home to you". Ok, but when does that stop anyone from doing anything?

I'm really should take my primary doc's advice & see a psychiatrist. She wants me to go so I can get checked on my anxiety meds. She is a doc that does NOT like to prescribe meds if she doesn't have to. I think it would just be a good idea for me to go for me.

I really don't have anyone in my life that I can truly open up & share with. Not since I stopped drinking. I've become more of a stay-at-home person. I'd rather be on my computer, or reading, gardening, at home than out with people. I have 2 sisters but even though we are close, I'm not comfortable talking to them about a lot of things. And if either reads this, (one of them subscribes here but I don't know if she still reads) please don't take it personally. I love you but there are some things that can only be shared with a person not so close to the situation.

WOW! That was NOT the original post I had in mind. I guess the post I read opened more old wounds than I thought. Also, I have been reading a lot more blogs that have been so open & honest. I just felt that maybe I could get this out. Somehow. I know it's going to take a lot to make me a stronger, happier person, but maybe this is a start to helping myself as well.

Thanks to all of you who have read this far. And those who couldn't read it all, I'm sorry. I didn't expect to do this. But, I am glad I did!

And, if any of you, ever need to talk or just say hi if you're having a rotten day, let me know! Misery loves company, right? Just kidding. I am here! Just being me!

Squeezing the tears out of my babushka,


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Time to Stop Procrastinating!

The procrastinator is back! I don't know how many times I told myself that I should just write. I have had ideas & thought "That would make a good post.", but did I do it? NO! Till now anyway. Oh, I've written a few comments here & there, but just couldn't commit to writing a post. Why? I could make a million excuses. But, I won't. I'll just say it straight out...I've been lazy. I've been reading blogs & email. Then something would come on tv. And then there's always the pretty, shiny things that distract me...LOL! Yup! Of course, dozing off at the computer is always something that comes up as well.

So, I am here & it's time to write! Onward!

Image by kudzuplanet via Flickr

Now, THAT'S some awesome carnival food!

Being that it is the Labor day weekend, we have our annual Hamtramck Festival going on. I think it's the 29th year. The city blocks off Jos. Campau, our main street, for about a 1/4 mile. There are 2 stages for bands & other acts. Rides, games, all kinds of booths with things to sell, drinks & lots of food. You should always come hungry to the festival because you will find something that you can't go home without eating! It used to be a mostly Polish area but now we have a very diverse crowd & something for everyone.

Our firemen make the best chili for festival. This year our local ABC affiliate is advertising the festival & had 2 of our firemen on tv to make the chili. Of course, when it came to adding the "secret ingredient", it was kept secret!

On Friday, my hubby, our dd & I did our usual walk-thru. We start at one end, walk down to where the rides block the other end, turn around & walk back. As we do every year, we stopped at the Fireman's booth & got our mugs. Then, we just strolled around a bit & people watched. It's always a great place for that & for meeting up with people you haven't seen in awhile.

Today, the festival started at noon. I took my babcia to the beauty shop early & to get some lunch meat. When I dropped her off, I wasn't feeling too well, so I stuck around the house today while my dd went with a friend so they could get the all-day ride bracelets. When they got back, they were a little sun-burned, but still full of energy as any 16 y/o girls. My hubby came home from work to chill for a bit & then headed off to the festival to meet up with my sis & bro-in-law. I have been sitting here, relaxing, watched a movie, & decided to buckle down & say hi to all of you!

Sunday after church, I may go to the festival to get my chili. The Sunday of the festival is my hubby's annual pub crawl day with people he works with. My dd spent the night at a friend's so I should have time for myself to have more peace & quiet. I definitely need it before we start back to school on Tuesday.

If I decide not to be lazy or get distracted, maybe I'll post again. Wouldn't that be a treat? Well, you may have to comment & beg for me to write again so soon...LOL! I tried to fix my comment box, so please let me know if it's working properly. I don't want to miss any of your wonderful comments. So, till tomorrow...maybe, I will be...

Wiping my mouth from all the delicious food with my babushka


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Good Night, Good Morning!

Sunrise over the south beach of Jamaica.Image via Wikipedia

I'm back! Oh no. Sit down, sit down. Please. Ok, but a standing ovation? Too much! Ah, delusions of grandeur...
The imagination is a terrible thing to waste. And mine is a terrifying thing to see! I believe if I check back into my posts, I have probably said that once before. Already doing repeats. Tsk, tsk, tsk.
Anyway, we got back from Massachusetts almost a week ago. I am finally sitting down to write. I've had ideas about what to write all week, but figured, "I'll have time later" or "I'll remember that". Well, guess what? I didn't have time & didn't remember. So, here I sit typing whatever pops into my head. This should be fairly interesting.
It's pretty late right now & I should be in bed to get up for church in the morning. But what fun would that be? Posting right now is a challenge because I am dozing off as type. And, of course, the computer is acting up. Jamming up & slowing down.
It is now morning. I gave up on the computer last night. It refused to cooperate! It's bad enough when the kids won't listen. But when the computer decides to act up, that's it! Ingrate! As much time as I spend with the computer & it acts like a spoiled brat. I had to fight with it to shut down. I kept my cool & finally got it logged off & to sleep. Then, it was my turn to sleep. For a little while anyway.
Now, it's Sunday morning. My dear computer started up, no problem, knock on wood. I had a little more than 4 1/2 hours of sleep. Not too bad for me lately. I just hope I don't fall asleep in church! So, if you do see me nod off during the service, please nudge me lightly before I start snoring! Have a great day everyone! Remember, if you hear a loud growling noise or your windows start to shake, don't worry, it's just me snoring!

Hoping my Babushka muffles the snoring,

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I'd Like To Thank the Academy

Happy Monday Everyone! (yeah, yeah, grumble, grumble) My first order of business is to thank my dear friend, Chrissy @ for my very first blogging award. It is The Premier Meme Award.

The guidelines for the Premier Meme Award are to list 7 of your personality traits, as evidenced on your blog, & then to pass the award on to 7 other blogs with notable personality.

My list of traits are:

1. Family-oriented-One of the most important things to me is my family.

2. Fun-Just can't sit around & work all day-BORING!

3. Caring-I have a tendency to worry about others more than myself.

4. Intelligent-The Polish, blonde & female thing is just a cover...shhh!

5. Funny-There are times when I just bust out & hilarity ensues! (ok, so most of the time it's when I'm by

6. Giving-I would give you the shirt off my back (& anything else I have on because it's just too damn hot lately! So don't ask because me nekkid is not a pretty!)

7. Emotional-I am usually pretty even-tempered but piss me off & Watch Out!

I have so many amazing blogs I read but here are a few that really get to me sometimes!

Ms. Quirky @ Musings of a Quirkyloon

Melissa @ Rock and Drool

Dana @ Life is Good

Chris @ Maugeritaville

Tiffany @ The Water Bottle

Sue @ Farvel Cargo

Margaret @ Nanny Goats in Panties

Thanks to them & quite of few others, my blogging abilities are being honed & perfected all the time. (time to get out the hip boots, it's getting pretty deep in here)

Are we there yet?Image by wiccked via Flickr

Now since that is done, (finally, after hours of my internet acting up), I have some bad news for all of you. OK, it's not THAT bad. Sorry to worry you. I am leaving for vacation Tuesday morning. My hubby has 2 weeks off so we are driving to Massachusetts to stay with my cousins for about a week. They were here just over a week ago but now we're taking the fun there. They live in Westfield so it'll be about 11-12 hour drive from home. I'm near well surrounded on 3 sides by Detroit. I probably won't be able to get online, but I will ck twitter from my phone! My name is @rayvenne if anyone even cares...boohoo. I will miss reading all the blogs. So I will be busy reading when I get back.

We haven't been on a real vacation where we left town in quite a few years, so this will be nice. Besides, 2 weeks at home with the hubby would send me to the funny farm! Padded cell, here I come!

My babcia had me take her to the Polish Market here so I could take some kielbasa & other Michigan goodies with us. They have a Polish town near them but nothing is like Hamtramck. I am also taking Vernors ginger ale & Better Made potato chips. Only in Michigan, so anytime we visit family out of town or they come here, that's the "need to have" stuff!

I am pretty much finished packing. Tonight we have to go to my sister's house & trade my car for their minivan for the trip. My '96 Grand Marquis uses way too much gas & hubby's blazer is just not safe enough for that long of a drive. Then, on the road at 6am! I will be sleeping most of the time since it's a non-smoking vehicle. ARGH! Or else I would be pulling my hair out. Eventually, I would like to quit, but on my terms not because everyone wants me to. And of course, the more they bitch, the more I smoke. Maybe if they would just let it go, I'd get the state of mind to just do it. But, since hubby & some family members pick about it all the time, it just pisses me off.

Well, I'm not going to get into a smoking/non-smoking discussion here. It's a personal choice.

SO, that's about it for now. I will post when I get back & show some pics if I can figure out how to put more than the 2 I usually do!

Have a great week everyone!

Wearing the Babushka to keep the sweat from dripping down my face,


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Like Seinfeld-A Post About Nothing

{{Potd/2005-10-26 (en)}}Image via Wikipedia

So, I was going to blog last night. Actually, it was around 2 am & I was wide awake. I started a post but realized one of my plug-ins was not working. I re-downloaded it twice & still couldn't get the damn thing working, so I gave up figuring it was a sign to GO.TO.SLEEP. Just checking it right now & it looks like it should be ok, but my blog subscriptions were jacked up. I had to go in & re-subscribe to about 8 of my blogs that I had on my aol fave page.
I don't have a paid subscription to aol anyway, but still use the site for a lot of stuff like e-mail, blogs, faves, etc. It just seems that aol is always jacking something up or running so slow that I get booted. ARGH! It's very frustrating.
Things should go ok now...knock on wood...tap, tap, tap. Ok, so I'm superstitious. Usually when things happen around here, I blame them on a ghost. I've never actually seen a ghost, but things fall or are in different places than where we put them. Sometimes, it's just a feeling or a little "whoosh" of cold air. Sometimes I just talk out loud to "it" & say "Ok, what do you want now?" or "That's enough already". Of course, it's probably just coincidence or my dh & dd playing tricks on me, which they love to do. They're pretty good at picking on me & each other. Boy, when those two go at it, you can tell they are father & daughter. It makes me want to pull my hair out! Hubby will unceasingly pick on, tease, nag, the poor kid till she is ready to strangle him. Of course, I have to hear the whine, "Mom, make him stop!". I just tell them to play nice & stay out of it as much as possible. I like my peace & quiet. It's like I have 2 kids instead of 1 & a hubby. You all know how this goes. I'm sure we've all been through it. Well, those of you who have younger children will have something to look forward to. LOL.
I guess I am really happy that they get along so well (until I am the target). And I'll tell you, I do believe in astrology & the zodiac signs. Poor little me, I'm a Cancer. My dh is a Taurus & dd is a Leo. I live with 2 very strong, dominant, stubborn signs. Gotta love 'em, but I try to stay out of the way...LOL!
Well, so much for my post about books for now. I guess sometimes when the mind rambles on, the thoughts just spill out. Good thing I am at the computer. Otherwise, I would be off somewhere talking to (which will happen anyway) Now, I am off to get some running done. Um, no, not running. I don't run.anywhere. Let's just say I have some errands. Gotta go get gas, pop (soda to you non-michiganders), & visit my Babcia. It looks like it should be a pretty nice day. Low 80's & some clouds. I love this weather! So, enjoy your day & maybe I'll post again later.

Babushka blowin' in the breeze,

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Reading is FUN-da-Mental!

BlogosphereImage by coyenator via Flickr

Reading is FUN-damental! Do you remember those commercials from the 70's? Or SRA (Science Research Associates)? Those little cube-shaped boxes in the corner of the classroom, maybe purple or aqua, with lessons separated by dividers. (that I obviously didn't learn much from since that last sentence was not a complete sentence...LOL)

I think my love of reading started shortly before I started school. My mom read to my sister & I from the time we were very young. My dad always had a book lying around that he was reading. So, I guess it's just natural that I read whenever I possibly can.

I like to read pretty much from every medium. I'll read books, newspapers, magazines, online books, & my most recent obsession, blogs!

For the last few months, I have been immersing myself in the blogosphere. I'm not even sure where it started. was one of the first blogs I started reading. Then I started clicking on links, from one blog to the next, & before I knew it, I was hooked! I began subscribing. And I added more...and more! I forget to read my emails sometimes because I just have to find out what's going on with all my blogging buddies. Most I have never commented on. I can't read them all everyday, but I sure try. I am going to try to post a few more comments even if it's just a "Hey!" or "Great post!". I don't want to be a "lurker"...eww! LOL! One of my reasons for starting my blog was that I was inspired by all of you out there. It's incredible the friendships you can make here. I used to be in an online group & made some lifelong friendships there that are better than most of the ones I have "in person". Another reason for blogging is to write things going on in the world around me. I have a handwritten journal that I write in sometimes. I keep it in my car & write while I'm waiting for my daughter to get out of school. I do A LOT of bitching there. *snicker snicker* That's what I want to do with my blog eventually, as I feel more comfortable about sharing more of myself. I guess I'm just afraid I may say too much personally about family & that it will come back to bite me in the ass ( I ). But, as far as I know, only my one sister has decided to follow me, but may have forgotten about my blog. Oh, who cares?!?! Like anyone else will know who I am talking about! HMMPH! I'm going to "Just Do It"! I'll start out slow though so I don't scare the hell out of everyone & chase you away. *grin*

Do you ever start a blog with a certain thought in mind & the blog just takes off in a completely different direction? Well, that's what just happened here. I think that's great though because now I have a topic for my next post! And if I get off my previously mentioned ass ( I ), (yes, it had to be mentioned twice because of the size...sorry...LOL) I will maybe post sooner than a week, like I want if I wasn't so damn lazy sometimes. Or busy reading blogs.

So anyway, I hope you enjoyed my little blog today. *blink * Until next time, my lovelies...

I am always...

Waving my Babushka,


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A Tale of Two (three) BBQ's

The grill sagaImage by kristiewells via Flickr

Today is the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing. We sure have come a long way since then, but still have barely scratched the surface.
I am not going to write about space exploration or alien abduction (not today anyway). I'm just going to tell you about my weekend, I suppose. (OK, stop that yawning back there. Yes, you. I don't think it's THAT boring!) Back to our regularly scheduled programming...
Well, Friday was my 42nd birthday. No point in lying. The voices conscience will get it out anyway. No big deal really. We already went out to dinner to celebrate mine & my dad's birthdays last weekend, so we really had no plans. Until...(cue suspense music) my youngest sister called. The call wasn't only to wish me "haapy birthday". She asked me what we were doing & as I told her we had no plans, she proceeded to the other reason for the call. Apparently, my middle sister was moving out of her fiance's place & could we help move some of the bigger stuff. In shock, but jumping for joy & doing the happy dance, I said "YES!" & got some of the explanation "why".
***Reader's Digest Condensed Version***
My middle sister met her now ex-fiance about 2 years ago after an almost 20 years relationship. She had been married about 5 years when she got divorced. Not too long after, she started dating this guy seriously & moved in with him almost right away. Needless to say, we thought it was a rebound thing & didn't like his arrogant, know-it-all attitude. But, "he" was different, she said. "He" treated her like a queen. They talked about everything. But, my sister lost her job & hasn't been able to do much because of a damaged rotator cuff (that she is having surgery on July 30th). "He" has been getting close to his dad, that he never really had contact with till recently & apparently, according to his dad, women pretty much should be seen, not heard & barefoot & pregnant! SO, things have been escalating. "He" told her to shutup, one day & she finally stood up for herself & told him to never speak to her like that again. Friday, he was in a mood & kicked out his brother & his kids & told my sis that she should just leave, too, And she did! Of course, this "house" is his mother's. She is not very happy & cried that he took everyone away from her. I felt bad for her but hope that she kicks his ass to the curb!
He was not there while we packed up & moved my sister out, so that saved a lot of our voices cuz I, totally, would have ripped him a new you-know-what. We tried telling her but now is not the time for I-told-you-so's. We took everything to my youngest sis' house where sis #2 lived before she moved out. Then my bro-in-law bbq'd some hot dogs & we chilled. Happy birthday to me.
Saturday wasn't too busy. I dropped my dd off at the drivng school for her last day of driving lessons (ARGH!), took my babcia to the beauty shop (92 & she goes every other week-grin), picked dd up from driving school & waited for the Polish owner of the beauty shop to call me & say "She is ready, sweetie", so I can pick her up. We went to the bakery for fresh bread, cakes & halka, which is an egg bread with raisins, & then to Kowalski market for some lunch meat. When we got to my babcia's house, I sat & chatted with her for a little bit, like I do everyday & took her out in the yard to check out her tomatoes, cucumbers & flowers. She was all set so I headed home. Later in the day, we went to my sis' house for another bbq & this time my bro-in-law smoked some ribs & then cooked them. They were awesome (as usual). We didn't stay too late because we had church in the morning. After church, we always go to breakfast with my hubby's mom & brother. At 4 pm Sunday, we were at my cousin's new home, for a housewarming bbq (, with his fiance, her parents from out of state & more friends & family. This time the bbq was steak for fajitas. Also, for a select few of us, the elite, the shunned, THE SMOKERS...there was a table set to the side with an ashtray. Besides myself & my sisters, there were maybe about 6 more people that smoked out of 40. No throwing things, no bitching, no lecturing. I know it's bad for me & others. I want to quit eventually & I will when I am ready. And the more people tell me to quit & nag me, it makes it worse. Subject closed. End of rant.
Everyone started leaving around 7:30 pm, so we all packed up & headed out, too. It rained for about 3 minutes while we were there but it ended so quickly that it didn't even matter.
That was my weekend. Lots of bbq, food, fun...etc. I am exhausted. And, we have stuff going on every weekend for the next few weeks. Hopefully, we will be taking a vacation this year away from home. Then, it will be time to go back to work & school. Nooooooooooooooo! I am not ready. Don't make me do it! Summer can't go by that quickly! I guess I better enjoy it!
P.S. Do you like my new profile pic? That's my light-up tiara! I wore it Friday for my birthday! Ain't I just the cutest thing? (Do NOT say a word! Just nod your head in agreement! LMAO)

In Search of Birthday Babushkas,

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Happy Birthday-TO ME!

A birthday cakeImage via Wikipedia

Friends, Bloggers, Countrymen, Lend me your speakers! Welcome to the 1st Annual Online Birthday party for...drum roll please...ME! For those of you who don't really know me, I am Collette A.K.A. Rayvenne (or Moonrayvenne on yahoo.) July 17, 1967 is my birth day. So, today I am 42 years young. No gifts are necessary. Your presence & maybe a hug are the best gifts I can get! (unless, of course, you have lots of cash burning a hole in your pocket & just have to get rid of

I guess I'll give you a little history & info on me. Born 7-17-67 in Detroit, MI. Three days later, the riots started just around the corner from the hospital I was born in. (even from the beginning, I was trouble...LOL!) I have lived in Hamtramck, MI for most of my life. Hamtramck is a small city 0f 2.2 sq. miles, surrounded on three sides by Detroit & was once in the Guinness World book of records for most bars per square mile. Every year, on Labor Day weekend, we have a festival where we block off the main street for anout a 1/4 mile & there are games, rides & food galore of many cultures. Bands play throughout the weekend on 2 stages. It's a great way to spend some time & a little money people watching, eating & dancing.

I am Polish, blonde, & female & that gives me an excuse for pretty much everything...LOL! I am married almost 17 years (Sept. 23, 1992). We haveone beautiful daughter who will be 16 y/o on August 13th of this year. She was born on Friday the 13th & loves horrorflicks almost as much as I do. I am a lunch lady (cafeteria aide) at our public high school & can't wait to hit the lottery so I can get out of there!

Well, I know that's a lot of personal info for these interwebz, but I wanted to share a bit of myself with you on my bithday so you will understand why I am totally bonkers at times & no one will come take me away in white coats!

So, stay awhile, enjoy yourselves, sign the guest book (comments) & pig out on cake & ice cream! We're still under construction here, so dust off a chair & have fun!

Let me know when you have your birthday & I'll bring the trick candles! LOL!

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Stay Off the Sidewalks

Neon.Image via Wikipedia

It's been way too long since I posted, so I figured I had better get back to business.

What has been happening in my neck of the woods? Since last time, I did finally get rid of the poor purple neon. The tow truck showed up at about 1:30 pm. So, I didn't have to wait from 8-5 only 8-1:30pm. Only wasted 3/4 of my day. Anyway, that is over & done with. The used car we bought to replace the neon is leaking oil something bad. And, it's only going to cost us $600 to fix it! (like we have that kind of money to pull out of our...Umm...butts, for a little nicer version of what I was going to say) It sucks & I am putting a quart of oil in every few days. When I went to the gas station last week, they put in 2 quarts & it just leaked out all over the street in front of my house. Needless to say, at least one neighbor is not happy. He suggested we put a box or something under the car. ARGH!

Fast forward to today. The city has finally been fixing our streets. Unfotunately, since we can't park on the street, the side streets & any open spaces are filled. In our little 2.2 square mile city, most houses do not have driveways as the houses are barely far enough apart to squeeze a car in between. Our house was built in the 1930's! We do have a two car garage, but usually we don't bother with it. My hubby's blazer & my '96 Grand Marquis barely fit. I did have a lovely time trying to back my car into it a little bit ago. But, I succeded without dinging the blazer or ripping my mirror off! I will once again attempt to put my car back in the garage after I pick up my DD from driver's ed. She started the classroom part last week & starts driving later today! Please wish us luck as she has never driven before in her life! (oh boy!)

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