January 2010

As most of you know, I am a dyed-in-the-wool sucker for dogs.  I am also an advocate for pet adoption (all of mine have been adopted) . Well, I am on a couple of rescue groups email lists and saw a notice about this little scruff-ball of a dog that had been a stray and turned in to a kill-shelter. It needed a foster home quickly, and not wanting to think about this little guy not getting a fair shake, I stepped-up to the plate and volunteered.


A skittish little guy, jojo (he just looks like a jojo) was extremely timid. He was very thin, quiet and reserved. He sat in my lap on the entire drive home, staring at me with these big, brown eyes.  I was smitten.

After an initial introduction to Kismet and Roxie, I let him out of his kennel. Within 2 hours, this little 10-lb ball of energy had every toy in our house scattered everywhere.  I watched him as he ran in circles around the rugs, skidded on the hardwoods, and jumped on my lap.  That,  my first foray into this whole rescue thing, was deeming me a “foster failure” (when you keep the dog instead of adopting it out).

I posted his picture on facebook, and all who know me told me in so many words that I was toast. Except HK. Always the sensible one, he reminded me of our frequent travel, as well as the cost of boarding our other 2 dogs, much less the added $$ of another.

Fortunately, within a couple of hours, an old friend, (who i trust), called me on the phone and said that she wanted to meet and probably adopt jojo. In all honesty, I was saddened, but relieved to know that he would go to a home where I knew he could flourish. We did a skype call, and she “met” him, fell in love, and will pick him up next week, once all the adoption papers are in order. So I get a few more days with the little guy, then my home opens up to save the life of another dog in need.

Have you ever fostered a pet? What was the outcome? Are you a ” foster failure”? I’d love to hear your stories.

This weekend, HK and I went to see Invictus.  Directed by Clint Eastwood, the movie stars Morgan Freeman as South African president Nelson Mandela, and Matt Damon as Francois Pienaar, the captain of the losing South African rugby team.

Honestly, I was not initially very enthusiastic about seeing this movie.  From what I know (admittedly little) about rugby, it is a violent and pointless game. OK, maybe Matt Damon can make it more tolerable, with his blonde hair and adorable smile.  There is still the issue of apartheid. Did I really want to watch a movie that combines the two subjects?   Well, with the fervor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday upon us, I felt the spirit and gave in. Good move!

Let me just start by saying that Morgan Freeman gives a stellar performance as Mandela, and amid the violence and racial tension depicted throughout most of the movie, Freeman manages to keep a reassuring and calming tone throughout.  Racial tension is everywhere, from the country’s rugby fans (they cheer against their home team, who represent apartheid), to the newly chosen security staff of the President.

With the approaching World Cup, Mandela sees the hope of unity through sport, meeting personally with Pienaar and encouraging the team’s interaction with the locals. The movie’s title, Invictus, comes from a poem that was Mandela’s inspiration during his nearly 30-year long prison term.  “I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul” is the message portrayed to Pienaar, serving as his own inspiration to bring the team into contention to win the 1995 World Cup.

Eastwood deftly places tension into his movie, both personal and racial, and skillfully transforms that tension into humor and warmth. Don’t think of this movie as a Rugby flick, and don’t think of it as a history lesson in apartheid, either. Think of it as a study of the human spirit and what is possible if one truly believes.

Well, unless you live in a cave, you’ve no doubt seen the video of  Larry Platt, a 62 year-old dude here in Atlanta that got into American Idol for an audition.

I am a super-fan of American Idol, but typically don’t start watching until they are in hollywood and the top 20 are chosen. Fortunately for me, I was bored last wednesday, and, since I live in Atlanta and all, figured I’d see what kind of talent the ATL was cranking out this year.

So, anyway, here is the video. I bet I’ve watched this about 20 times already. This guy Larry and I both share, along w/ countless others, no doubt, a real distaste for these guys that walk around here with their drawers hangin’ off their asses, down to their knees. So Larry wrote a little rap about it.

Simon Cowell (yummers!!) predicted correctly that this song would fast become a hit, and boy-oh-boy, it has! He ( Larry) is gonna be on the View monday.

So Jimmy Fallon (Saturday Night Live) has put his very own Neil Young spin on the song.  (It was posted on Youtube and NBC had it blocked) 

I am still laughing my ass off over this one!  Click here and enjoy!!!


Last year, I posted a blog asking “what is your word for 2009?” I got a lot of great responses, both on the blog and on my facebook page.  If you were a reader then, you saw that my word was “spirit“. I liked the word, its meaning and the inspiration it conjured up inside of me. Of course, last year was a milestone for me, it brought my 50th birthday and lots of inner revelations. (some good, some not-so-good).

So now, for 2010, the start of not just another year but another decade, I’ve decided to make my word “outside“. For me, the word outside conjures up many thoughts.  First and foremost is nature, be it a a city park, my urban patio, the beach or the mountains. Ever since I was a little tomboy growing up in rural eastern Kentucky, surrounded by the Appalachian mountains, I was happiest when I was (more…)

Eddie Ross

Hey, peeps, i just got this cool, cool, coool invite and am passing it along to my Atlanta readers, esp those of you who want to try their hand at some artistic creativity this year.

On Saturday, jan 9th, the mulit-talented (and adorable) Eddie Ross is offeringan art and framing workshop in Atlanta.  Hosted by Larson-Juhl, there will be wonderful munchies (catered) and tea as well as wine, mingling with other like-minded creators (or wanna-be’s) and an afternoon of fun! I am attending, and hope that you will join me there.  Click here for info and to register.

The best news is that it is ONLY $10.00, or, if you’re a blogger, it’s free!!!!!!!!

So get off your butt and head OTP for a great way to kick-start the new year!!! Happy 2010!!!

Over the holidays, HK and I decided to break up our week-long isit w/ my parents by going on an overnight kayak adventure in the everglades

HK 'yakkin in the 'Glades

“Oh, my god, are you nuts??  Don’t you know there are gators and pythons out there?  You’ll get eaten alive!!”   Mom shook her head in that old familliar way she does when HK and I spring plans for our next big trip on her.  “Couldn’t you just  go to the beach like everybody else?”  Of course, she knows the answer to that question, and the next morning we were on our way.

Our adventure  started in Everglades City where we met our guide Cynthia, and our 2 traveling companions, Peg and her daughter Becca.  We were all experienced paddlers, so were able to forgo the initiation lecture. What we were warned about, however, was the slight chance of  encounters with no-see-ums, those pesky tiny black bugs that attack during sunset and sunrise.  “They’re typically not a problem,” Cynthia assured us. “They don’t even bother some people. Bug spray doesn’t help–they’re immune”.  OK, since mosquitos don’t typically choose me as their main course, I figured what the hell.

We packed our yaks with all our gear–quite a feat to cram a tent, sleeping bags, 2 days worth of food/supplies and clothing into the 6″x6″ hatch of the kayak. Since I had the fatty-kayak, I got to carry the motherload of stuff, giving me lots of extra weight/drag.  Needless to say, I struggled to keep up with the sleeker, newer kayaks.

Along the way we paddled with dolphins-up close and personal, along with a plethora of shorebirds and other wildlife. (the ospreys were a real treat). (We did not encounter any pythons or ‘gators–they do not frequent this area.)

Anyway, mid-afternoon we arrived at our destination, Picnic Key, and set up camp.  Now, I’m gonna admit, it has been a loooonnnnggg time since I’ve camped in the sand.  Let me tell you, it can get a little messy. A lot messy, in fact, and before we were even done putting out our sleeping bags, there was sand in everything.  After a bit of island exploration and a snack, we went out for a sunset paddle.  After about 30 minutes, my shoulder gave out, so I headed back in.

BAD MOVE!!! As soon as I got on land (having relinquished my kayak to Peg), the no see ums attacked. Swatting my face I ran for the tent and jumped in, but not before the 376 of them that were attatched to me snuck through the screen. I pulled on everything I had that would cover bare skin, but I had nothing for my face, which they were feasting on big time by now. SHIT! I looked around for ANYTHING-and, spotting our mesh toiletry bag, dumped everything out and threw it over my head, tying it around my neck with a sock.  And there I sat, for the next hour, trying to watch a stunningly beautiful sunset from the protective netting of a toilet bag.

HK and the others, of course, laughed their asses off at me when they returned–after the bugs had retreated for the night–(it’s ok, though, i refused HK any of the wine we had brought along for dinner.)

Next morning, we all stayed in the saftey of our tents until well after sunrise in order to save blood.  Upon returning to the pull-out point, 4 hours of hard paddling against the current and the wind, I promptly stepped into a huge but hidden nest of fire ants, which finished off any remaining blood that I had. After realizing why my feet and ankles were burning so profusely, I tried in vain to brush them off. I ran back into the water, but the little fukkers were relentless.  They weren’t letting go.  Here is a shot of the evidence-3 days later.

OK, so it wasn’t the ideal trip. It was, however, another adventure, the first of which I hope to indulge myself in in 2010!

My Dream Board 2008/2009

Late in 2008, I started a dream board. If you’re not sure what a dreamboard (also called vision board) is, it is a place, either material (like a big piece of poster board), or a computer generated document, where you state your dreams, goals, ideas. It is like writing out your goals in life, except that looking at pictures evokes more emotion, allowing you to really envision your goal. You can add or remove at your will.  You can also add affirmations for yourself.  The premise is that if you look at this “list” every day,twice a day for 5 minutes at a time, the laws of attraction will bring it to you.  

Here is a good site to help get you started. (click here)

Sounds a little to elementary, doesn’t it? Well, let me tell you, I am now a firm believer! Many of the goals that I placed on my board became reality in 2009.  (One that didn’t, a big one, was to go to Hollywood and win 1 million bucks in “Million Dollar Password“).  Oprah is a huge believer, and had a show about it recently. Here is Oprah’s site for building one online.

Anyway, with the new year here, I’m making my bigger, newer, better dreamboard. I’lll be making it on a great big yellow posterboard and i’ll put it in my office to look at daily. I know that many of my goals will become reality in 2010.  Go ahead. Try it. It certainly can’t hurt, and at the very least you’ll have your goals out there. Keep it private or show the world–be creative and DREAM BIG!!!!

And if you’d like to share, let me know a thing or two of what’s on YOUR dreamboard!

Happy 2010!!!!