Monday, May 30, 2016

The Bachelorette: Big hoses, meat heads, and Winter is coming

Welcome back to The Bachelorette!

Let's get right to the dates. The formula is the same as it's always been: 2 group dates, and a one on one. Yawn.

First date: 
a group date with I think Luke, Grant, Will, Evan, Daniel, Vinny, Ali, James (There are 3 so I'm not sure which one) Wells, and Robbie: "Let's heat things up."

As soon as the date card is read, the guys hear an explosion and they all run out to see a limo on fire. The guys just stand there like dumb asses... no one even got a fire extinguisher or anything. And isn't one of them an actual fire fighter? Lame.

So, Jojo comes up in a fire truck and puts out the fire, looking way hotter than any fire fighter I've ever seen, and then fthe guys pile in to her fire truck and they drive away to some kind of training center. The guys have to suit up, and then perform a bunch of fire fighting tasks.

(one guy actually said that  he hadn't held a hose that big since he was back home in his apartment. Oh, no he didn't!)

For Grant, the actual fire fighter, this is just another day. But for poor Wells, the radio dj,  this was a big deal, and poor guy dang near passed out. The reward for this, of course, is that Jojo spends some extra time with him:

Jojo to the rescue
Meanwhile, back at the mansion the guys are  writing a song to sing to Jojo (led by the guy that wants to be a country singer). But super jerk Chad (or maybe Alex?) isn't interested. You know he's going to be the guy we love to hate.

OK, back to firefighting; Luke, Grant (no surprise), and Wells are in the top three. They have to climb to the top of a building and "save" Jojo. Wells was pretty much done from the start, so he was no contender. But Luke gave Grant some serious competition! How embarrassing would have been to have someone else be a better fireman than an actual fireman?

No worries. Grant wins. He's pretty stinkin' hot. His reward is the first one on one time with Jojo. He spends his time kissing her. His kisses are sweet and gentle, and so hot.

Have Mercy

Wells spends the next time with Jojo. He's funny and personable and he shows her pictures. No kisses.

Then there's a bunch of other one on ones that must not have been that interesting, since they spent 10 seconds total on all of them.

And then Jojo spends time with Luke, and they kiss on the rooftop.

(This from The Agent: "Does she at least brush her teeth in between guys?")

Wells received the group date-- a pity rose.

Don't worry Grant and Luke-- you're safe.

Second date: 
Derek: "Love is full of choices." I don't remember Derek at all, so clearly he's not that memorable. The date is filled with choices: sky or sea, north or south, etc. Their choices lead them to a picnic with a view of the Golden Gate bridge. It was  a pretty cute idea that I don't think we've ever seen before. Thank you for that, Bachelor Nation.

Derek gets a little serious during the evening portion of the date (as he should), and says that he's had trouble opening up after his ex girlfriend cheated on him. Jojo can relate, since the last guy she fell in love was dating 27 other girls at the same time.

Derek gets the rose.

Third date: 
Jordan, Christian,  Nick, Another James, Alex, and Chad: "Prove your love to me... and the nation." This means that three guys didn't get any date at all: The third James (I think the super fan) and two other guys.

The guys and Jojo go to the ESPN studios to play "Bachelor Nation." This is lame. I'm not feeling it at all. These dates should not be funny. Jojo needs a husband, not a comedian.... and certainly not a guy who wants to make it big while singing (I'm looking at you, Other James).

And she can't throw a football

The most telling thing about the date is that Chad is for sure a jerk.... but good Lord. She likes it. Ugh. I hate jerks.

The top three guys were Alex, Chad, and James, with James in the number 1 spot. These guys don't get anything special, but Jojo has said she will take take these (lame, bogus) thoughts into consideration.

Singing James gets the first one on one time with Jojo. He wrote her a note telling her his feelings, and it made Jojo tear up. They kiss, but I don't love it. He kisses way too loud.

Chad's one on one time drove me CRAZY! Don't pretend to not be a jerk! With your yorkie-maltese (read-- a really small dog) and your mom is your best friend but she just died 6 months ago story. Ugh!

They kiss.... and Chad admits off camera that he's starting to have feelings for her.

Singing James gets the rose. Thank goodness for that. But he can't possibly win. Did he start crying during his interview? No way can he be the guy for her.

Cocktail Party: 
Chad was waiting outside for Jojo when her limo showed up. He gave her a glass of wine, and walked her inside, while giving her a quick kiss. He might have wanted more, it looked like she pulled back a bit. Interesting.

As much as I don't like Chad, I hate that the other guys are so butt hurt about it. Dude, he was waiting outside for her. Get over it. Don't be jealous that you didn't come up with the idea first.

Chase made it snow.... how did he do that? Did he just talk to the producers and beg them to make it snow?

Winter is Coming
The guys confronted Chad again, because he interrupted  Alex's time (and then again with creepy Evan). Have these guys never watched the show? Aren't they SUPPOSED to interrupt each other? I just don't understand why they're getting in their panties in a bunch.

Chad finally loses his temper and lashes out at Alex (the short marine) and they come close to blows. This is what happens when you get too many meat heads in the same room.

Rose recipients:
Wells (group date)
Derek (one on one)
Singing James (group date)
Another James
St. Nick
Super Creepy Evan

This means that the third James (the super fan), and two other guys.

Don't forget that the Bachelorette is on for TWO nights next week! It's going to be crazy!

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Monday, May 23, 2016

Jojo is the Bachelorette!

Are you ready for The Bachelorette! It's so exciting!

Now, to be honest, Jojo was not my first choice for the Bachelorette. But it's not about the lead, it's about the crazies they cast on the show to win her heart!

The show starts with a recap of last season: Jojo fell in love with Ben, he said he loved her, she begged him not blindside her, he promised he wouldn't, and then he big fat blindsided her.

Jojo then meets with three prior Bachelorettes-- Ali, Desiree, and Kaitlyn-- and they all gave her advice on how to make this the most amazing experience ever.

Finally, we get to meet the guys. Here are a few highlights:

There is a firefighter who could save me any day
The Bachelor super fan probably likes guys named Joe, not Jojo.
The erectile dysfunction expert.... no. Just no.

Statastics say that the front runner is either the first one out of the limo or the last one (Lauren, the girl that Ben ultimately picked, was the first one out of the limo last season).

First one out: Jordan, the former pro quarterback.

And then we have a guy in a kilt, a guy in a Santa suit, a guy who brought the singing group All 4 One to sing for Jojo, and a guy who came riding in on a unicorn (Luke, the last one out... well, um, there was no limo, so maybe he doesn't count).

Jojo goes in to mingle with the guys, and she complains that she doesn't feel an instant connection... until she meets Jordan (first one out of the limo, the former pro quarterback). Jordan opened up the floodgates, and then she started to feel connections with a lot of guys.... but then she came back to smootch a bit with Jordan (after an awkward first kiss with Will-- but let's ignore that for a bit).

The guys are drinking a whole lot. Canadian guy stripped own and jumped in the pool. Multiple guys interrupt her while she's trying to do an interview. Jojo still hasn't given out the first impression rose. Who's it going to be?

It turns out to be.... Jordan. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

Almost immediately after that, Chris Harrison comes out and says that it's time to make some decisions.


There is one more guy to come out of the limo.

It's Jake, the airline pilot, who was the Bachelor several years ago. He picked Vienna, who no one liked, and it lasted all of 5 seconds. He has a terrible temper, and kind of lost it during the after the final rose special. But he looks delicious with his shirt off.

It turns out that Jake, in addition to being in the Bachelor family, is also a close family friend. And he says he wants to find love.... for her. In that room. Not with him.

That was friggin' dumb! Let's get back to the rose ceremony!

Rose Recipients:

Jordan (first impression)
James T. 
Some guy (I missed it because The Agent's computer suddenly got loud. Maybe the fireman?)
James F. 
St. Nick
James S. 
Evan (SCARY! RUN! Don't believe me? Please note exhibit A:) 

He gives me the chills just looking at him

And the final rose goes to.... 


Going home tonight is the guy in the kilt, and a bunch of other guys who I didn't even notice).

It looks like there's going to be some SERIOUS drama this season! Can't wait!

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53 Days of Summer Fun

Who's glad it's almost summer vacation???

Sadly, Summer isn't that big of a deal here. I still work, The Agent still works, so the kids go to day camp during the summer. They like that they don't have to worry about school, but they still have to get up and get ready every morning, so that's a bummer. Certainly different from the Summer vacations I had growing up. So the trick is finding the fun in our every day lives.

Every Summer for the past few years, we've created a Summer fun list-- a list of fun, attainable things to do, one for each day of Summer vacation.  Last year's list is here  and 2014's is here. We have 53 days of Summer vacation this year, so this year we will have 53 fun things on our list. The kids help create the list, I ask The Agent what he wants to do, and I add a few things of my own.

Here's our list this year:

I'm sure we won't get to EVERYTHING on this list (we never do), but they're all possible. Like there's no "Go to Greece on vacation" or "Climb Mt Everest." The list is printed out and on the refrigerator, so the kids can cross off what we've done so far, and they can decide what they want to do next. It makes the Summer break a little more fun, and it gives us family time together.

I will be posting pics of everything we do on Instagram, so feel free to follow along! And I want to see what fun things you're doing this Summer, too!

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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree

When I was in the 5th grade, my mother volunteered at the school on a weekly basis. For Mother's Day, my teacher gave my mom a box of See's candy, as a thank you for volunteering.

On the same day, my girl scout troop made muffins for our moms for Mother's Day. I walked home from school that evening, with both the candy and the muffins in my backpack.

Except the See's candy didn't make it home. I ate it. Yes, the whole box. Don't judge! See's candy is about the best thing in the world.

I hid the empty box in my backpack and gave the muffins to my mother. "These are from Mrs. Hart, because you volunteer in the class," I told my mother. I'm sure my logic was that if  I was going to eat my teacher's present, the least I could do is let her take credit for my muffins.

So, I ate the candy, my parents ate the muffins, and they never knew about the candy. All was well.

Until Monday morning.

My mother gave me a sealed envelope and said, "Here. Give this to Mrs. Hart."

"What is it?" I asked.

"It's a thank you note for those delicious muffins," my mother answered.

Oh, Crap. Not to mention, I'm sure that they were definitely NOT delicious, since they were made by a bunch of 10 and 11 year old girls.

But I couldn't give the note to Mrs. Hart, not when I didn't know what it said. So as I was walking to school, I carefully opened the letter.

Dear Mrs. Hart, 
Thank you for the lovely muffins. They were delicious. They were the perfect addition to our Mother's Day brunch..... 

Oh, no. Mrs. Hart could never see that.  The card went down the sewer drain.

It wasn't until several weeks later that it occurred to me that I never found a way to thank Mrs. Hart for the candy on behalf of my mother. I knew I couldn't pass off a note in my own writing, so I never said anything. Better to just have the teacher think my mother was rude.

I was reminded of this story when I was going through Bug's backpack last week and saw that Bug had been practicing to write my signature.

"Ummm, Bug? What is this? Why are you writing my signature?"

Without missing a beat, Bug replied, "Your signature is so pretty, I wanted to try it."

Lies. You can't play a player, my friend!

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

April results and May Goals

Can you believe it's already May? April flew by! Here were my goals for April: 

* File taxes. Done. And the money is already spent.

* Write a short story.  I started one, a great idea about an embryologist who couldn't get pregnant herself. But it never really went anywhere, and it sits unfinished.

* Help Bug make a You Tube video. We never got around to doing this, but Bug still wants to have a kids cooking channel.

* Lose three pounds. April 1: 242.3. May 1: 241.1. A loss of 1.2 pounds. Pitiful. But I guess it's better than a gain!

And although this wasn't a goal, but I read three more books this month, making  21 all together. Here are the books I read:

The Good Neighbor by AJ Banner:

buy it here
This was a pretty good book. The main character lost her closest friends and her own home in a fire, and now she's questioning if her whole life is lie, including her marriage to her husband. It was a page turner.

When I'm Gone by Emily Bleeker:

buy it here
I liked Wreckage so much, that I decided to read When I'm Gone. This one was also really good. It started out much like PS, I Love You-- the main character's wife dies, and she leaves him several letters that she has delivered to him from beyond the grave. But while PS, I Love You is a romantic tear jerker from beginning to end, When I'm Gone is a mystery, and he questions the secrets his wife kept while she was alive. Another excellent book.

Making Faces by Amy Harmon:

buy it here
 One of my readers recommended this book to me, and I'm so glad. I would consider this a Young Adult novel. It's about inner beauty, and sometimes beautiful faces can be just as beautiful on the inside, and you can be a beautiful person without the perfect outer shell. This was my favorite book of the month, but all three were really good!

Now, on to May!

*Lose three more pounds. I think I might have to give up alcohol in order to accomplish this. It makes me very sad.

*Create our summer bucket list. The kids look forward to this every year! Last year's list is here  and 2014's is here. We have 52 days of Summer vacation this year, so this year we will have 52  fun things on our list.

*Create a You Tube Video for Bug. I didn't get to this in April, so let's try it again in May!

*Go on a date without the kids. I need a night out in a major way! Who would like to watch my kids?

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Monday, May 2, 2016

It's been a month, so here's an update

A sweet reader asked if I  was still alive, and reminded me that it had been damn near a month since I last wrote.

I am still alive.

I am suffering from a major case of writers block.

The weeks are spiraling out of control. I look at my calendar and I see that May is booked solid, but   June looks better and July is almost completely blank. I tell myself that if I can just get through these next couple of weeks, things will calm down. Of course, by the time that happens, more commitments will come up.

Let me give a bit of a update in each area of my life:

We are eating, breathing, and sleeping baseball right now. He went up a level this year, which means my commitment level has grown exponentially. There are games twice a week, plus practices.  He is the youngest player on the team, so he'll be growing with these boys for the next  years. Right now he plays either outfield or second base. He's not the best player on the team by any means, but he loves the game, and that's the important thing.

Game Day Vibes!

BK still gets into quite a bit of trouble. He can not seem to keep his body to himself. He gets mad at someone and kicks them-- that's a call to me. He thinks he's being funny and kisses someone-- that's a call to me. He pretends that he's a ninja with the other boys and they all karate chop each other-- that's a call to me. The Agent says he's just being a boy, but I'm ready to change my phone number. His birthday is next month and he wants to have his party at a laser tag place. I told him one more hands on event and he won't get a party. Let's see if that works-- it's only been three days, but so far, so good!

Bug is a little diva right now. She turned 20 last month, and she thinks she's all that and a bag chips. basketball season is over, and she didn't want to be on the swim team year, so her only extra curricular activity right now is girl scouts. She's friendly with all the girls, but I wouldn't say she's developed any major friendships yet. PoorBug struggles a bit socially. She'll go three months not caring what anyone thinks, and then have a breakdown, crying that she doesn't have any friends. It was twin day at last week. She didn't make any effort to coordinate a twin outfit with anyone, and went to school that day in her normal uniform. After school, she was upset that every person in the class had a twin except  her, and then had the nerve to get mad at me because I didn't arrange an outfit with anyone. Hey, it's not problem! She needed to figure it out for herself!

We went to the snow this month. Yes, we're in t-shirts. That's how we roll in Cali

At the same time, when someone does seem to want to be her friend, she's not interested. Bug and the rest of her troop was swimming at someone's house on Friday night, and the mom called me to see if Bug would like to spend the night. Sure, that would be wonderful! But when I got Bug on the phone to tell her, she said she didn't want to stay the night, and asked me to pick her up. When arrived, Bug begged to stay the night after all. It turned out that another girl had also been invited, and although Bug didn't want to just sleep over with the hostess, the event became a lot more interesting when another girl was involved! I told Bug that you don't accept an invitation based on who else will there, she asked me to pick her up, I did, we're leaving.

She cried all the way home, and went straight to her room and went to bed without saying a word. Little diva.

When she's not being melodramatic, Bug likes to bake or play on her computer.

The Agent
The Agent is good. My fireplace is still not complete, but there's no longer a hole in my living room, so I'm not complaining anymore, which explains why my fireplace isn't done yet. He goes golfing every Thursday and plays poker whenever I let him out of the house (maybe two or three times a month). He's been begging me to go camping, now that the weather is nice. I suppose I'm going to have to do that a couple of times this summer.

Work is good. I still have a job and I'm still pretty good at it. I'm still learning and there's still a few things I'm struggling with, but I'm chugging along. I am without a boss now, and I'm still waiting for the announcement on who that will be, but for now I'm doing pretty well without someone above me to tell me otherwise!

I have not miraculously lost 50 pounds. For now, that's ok.

What have you been up to this month?

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Monday, April 4, 2016

March results and April goals

March is in the books! How did it turn out for you?

End Basketball and start baseball. Success! Bug had a great finish. She wasn't the best on the team, but she made serious improvement from the beginning of the season. I told her at the beginning of the season that I  only ask that she try each game, and she did! She put in great effort every game.

Now we're eating, breathing, and sleeping baseball. BK is kind of awesome, and went up a level this year. He's the youngest player on the team, but he's holding his own! He scored two runs on his first game, and we ended up winning 9 to 3. Go Yankees!

Lose 5 more pounds. March 1st: 238.9. March 31st: 242.3. Yikes! Too many Cadbury eggs!

Read 3 more books. Nailed it again! I read 6 more books in March, putting me at 18 all together for the year:

Legend by Marie Lu.

buy it here
This book was on my kindle for over a year before I actually started reading it this month. When I purchased it, I thought it was the book that became the movie with the same name starring Will Smith. It's not. Still, it was was moderately entertaining. It's the first book in a series, I probably won't purchase another the next book.

Royal Date by Sariah Wilson

buy it here 
I think this one was free. It was a predictable,  cute little romance, with the typical misunderstandings that couples must go through before they live happily ever after. This was a stand alone book (I think) but there are other books that will follow the stories of some of the other characters. I may or may not be purchasing the other books. To be determined.

The Tumor by John Grisham.

buy it here 

This is not a real book, so I hesitate to even bring it up. It was described as a non legal thriller. Ok, I'm game. But really it's about ultrasound technology, and how it's going to revolutionize cancer treatment in the future, and he's financially endorsing the practice. It's basically an advertisement for the product. Well written, but not really my cup of tea.

The Revenant by Michael Punke.

buy it here
The Agent read this book and seemed to like it, and we hadn't seen the movie yet, so I decided to give it a shot. It was pretty good. It's about a man who was attacked by a bear and was left in the wilderness to die by his comrades. The book is more about the victim's quest for revenge from the men who left him to die. This was probably the most intellectual book I've read this year.... which is probably also why it took me two weeks to read when I can usually get through a book in two days.

Close to Home by Megan Nugen Isabell

buy it here
You might remember that I read the first 5 books of this series in January. When I found out that there was a 6th book, I picked it up right away. This was an easy beach read, as entertaining as the previous ones, but I have to say I was more than a little annoyed with some of the choices the main character made. Greedy girl! I will be buying the next book in the series.... when it comes out. I hope it doesn't take too long-- I have a terrible memory, and if I can't remember what happened in the first book, I probably won't be buying the next one.

Wreckage by Emily Bleeker

buy it here
This is probably my favorite book of the year so far. It's about two people who survive a plane crash, and live for two years on a deserted island before they are rescued. It's about their feelings before, during, and after their time on the island. There are a lot of flashbacks, but it's still easy to follow. I felt for the main characters' dilemma, but I was annoyed that there was one plot hole that I needed more info on. Still, I would recommend this one! 

Donate 4 bags of "stuff." Done, and then some! I meant to take a picture and then I forgot, like the big goof I am. But we ended up donating 4 bags of clothes, a bag of tupperware, a box of old toys, and a guitar. 

Go to the library. Score! It was a little sad that I had to schedule time to fit this in, but at least we got it done!

Have an awesome Spring Break! I had a week off with the babies for spring break, and The Agent had to go to Chicago for work, so it was just the three of us for most of the week. We packed in as much fun as we could! We decorated Easter eggs, toured the Jelly Belly factory, went to the library, and went hiking along the Cosumnes River. Good times!

Now, here's what's in store for April:

* File taxes. I can't believe we haven't done this yet.

* Write a short story. My writing has really taken a back seat lately, but I have an idea that is playing around in my head.

* Help Bug make a You Tube video. Bug has serious love for Rosanna Pansino, who hosts Nerdy Nummies on You Tube. Even I got a little star struck when she "liked"  my Instagram photo of one of the creations Bug made from her cookbook. Now Bug has it in her head that she wants to start her own web series, so I told her I would help her with it.

* Lose three pounds. Time to get serious now. Summer is almost here and The Agent is going to expect me to walk around in shorts. But since I haven't been able to lose 5 pounds, I better start off a little smaller and only try to lose three.

That's it! Make it a great month!

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