Thursday, October 29, 2009

Kim Zolciak's Wasteful Ways

We interrupt this Vacation Update to say that Kim Zolciak of the "Real" Housewives of Atlanta has to be the most wasteful human on the planet.

She wears wigs - and that's okay with me - but she wears a new one every day.

This costs approximately $12,000 per month.

You could feed a lot of people in need with that much money! Families could survive on that.

Even if the wigs looked good - and honey, they don't - that is still way too much money to spend on your hair per month. She is a fauxlebrity for Pete's sake! How can she spend that much on her fake hair?!

Now, back to our regularly scheduled program...

Most Awesome Vacation Ever - Part Two

So, we drove across the desert on Thursday (10/22) and it was wonderful. It's a five + hour drive, but we are always well-prepared. Lots of drinks, snacks, things to listen to and read, stops when we need to. It was Steinvic's aunt, uncle, cousin and us making the trek and it was a beautiful day.
We arrived, got cleaned up and spent some time window shopping, playing a little on the slot machines, drinking, drinking and drinking, and then took Steinvic's cousin to a late Mexican dinner. (I am looking like crazy online for the name of it because I really liked it, but I can't figure out where we were?!?!?)

On Friday, Steinvic and I had a short business meeting with a property manager because we're hosting a conference out there in the spring for our professional association. It went well and then we had some time to eat at Margaritaville (thanks to a gift certificate from Em and Ay) and meet his cousin for a few drinks before we got ready for the second U2 concert.

We shared a cab to the concert with a bunch of guys from Costa Rico. The cab ride was much traffic, even before we got to the Sam Boyd Stadium. We were on the floor for this show, but that was fine with us...the view was great, there was room to dance and aside from the abundance of skunk weed (really, really strong, thick odor and I totally didn't see anyone toking so I have NO idea where it was coming from and neither did the police who made regular rounds trying to find the culprit) it was the perfect place from which to watch the show. We were up closer to the stage when we first got there, but the vibe was bad...people were pushy, very possessive of space and we just felt like it was too hostile. Believe me, moving back was a good idea!

The show was awesome. I mean, really incredible. I have some photos on my camera I'll try to post here shortly, but we had a great time and got some nice U2 swag. Bill Clinton and Chelsea were even at the show! Eventually we made our way out of the stadium to catch a cab back to the hotel.

Stop. The people at Sam Boyd apparently have never had a big event like this before because they did a sucky job of crowd control. We waited in line for a half our to get out to the cab area, and only got into that area by insisting, as a bunch of other people poured out , blurring the line and rushing the gate - essentially butting in front of about 300 of us who had been patiently waiting. Eventually, we saw that there were literally thousands of people waiting for a cab. I was like, we gotta go. We have to walk. We might not make it all the way back to the hotel, but we might catch a cab on it's way back to pick up more people. Because people were drunk and impatient and getting lippy. I felt like things could get crazy pretty quickly.

Keep in mind, it's late. It's dark. We are not familiar with Las Vegas, outside of The Strip. So we just start walking. As we walk, the crowd thins. Finally, it's just us. We're at least three miles away from the Stadium. And, knowing that Vegas cabs can't pick you up if you're not in a turn around (well, they can but they will get a hefty fine) we see what looks like a cab coming and linger around a parking lot entrance for a few minutes.

Bless the cabbie who stopped for us! Steinvic gave him a HUGE tip.

Steinvic was beat but I was famished and needed soup. We found some and by then, it was 1:00 a.m. A very long and exciting and tiring day.

There is more! But I'm trying not to make these posts too long or you might not come back! So, more soon...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

We're Home!

Whew...we're back! What a long and wonderful and eventful vacation! Let me break it down for you...

Tuesday the 2oth was the first of our two U2 shows. We met up with Steinvic's brother (who was in town on business) and all went over to the Westgate Center together for some pre-show drinks and snacks. His brother didn't have seats with us, so we split up and got our seats. If you like the Black Eyed Peas, you'd be so very happy...I am not a fan but they were HOT. Lots of energy, and you could tell they were totally enjoying being on U2's big ol' fancy stage.

Fast forward to a third into the show...I was completely into "Beautiful Day." That song is my the words. I listen to it every morning when I get into the car, before anything else. It means so much to me...lifts my heart. So, all of the sudden, at the end of the song, Steinvic takes my hand. My LEFT hand.

"It's a beautiful day...I don't want you to get away..." he begins, playing off the lyrics. The look on his face...locked in my mind forever. "Will you marry me?" he asked, beginning to put the most wonderful ring on my finger.

"YES!!!! Yes, I will! Will you marry me????" I don't even know why I said that! I think I must have just been so excited and wanted him to know how much I wanted this. But he didn't hear me anyway, because he was hugging and kissing me. We were so happy.

It didn't take too long for the people behind us to figure out what was going on and pat us on the back, give the thumbs up...I showed them my ring and exclaimed, "We're engaged!!" and the joy just flowed. I will never, ever forget that moment as long as I live.

People keep asking me about that concert and I can't tell anyone anything about it after The Ring. I kept thinking about how lucky I am, how wonderful it is to have Real Love, to be able to celebrate it and talk about it and the future without hesitation... I don't remember the concert. Just calling a few of our precious people, like my Mom and Step Dad, and our friend Em, and looking through that open venue to the skies and thinking how my Grandma got to see the whole happy she must be. Blessed. I am blessed.

We met with Seinvic's brother after and the traffic was dense, so we stopped for celebratory drinks. Thanks to the lovely bartender at Shout Out's for the round of Jaeger Bombs...that was so kind.

Then home...and that is all for part one...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

He Really Loves Me!

Okay, I already knew that Steinvic really loves me, but last night, he proposed.

I am still basking in the glow from all the details...we're still telling our families. So for now, I just wanted to share our good news with you and to share this photo of the gorgeous Tsavorite and diamond Celtic-style ring that Steinvic designed himself. (You can see Fred the Dog - his Aunt and Uncles's youngest pup - between my fingers.)
More later...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Arizona is Amazing...

We are here! Arizona is just as clear and hot and beautiful as it was when we left it a year ago. According to the news, it was 102 today. It didn't feel that hot, though...not at all like Ohio hot.

Look at me, resorting to talking about the weather, like we don't know each other. The real news is that I slept last night like I haven't slept in about a year. I sleep at Steinvic's aunt and uncle's like I used to sleep at my Grandma's: solid. I don't sleep this well anywhere else. I probably turned in around 9:00 p.m. Arizona time and didn't wake until 7:30 this morning. No nightmares, no dinosaurs, nothing.

We're getting ready to go out for the evening. Just to a local we're fond of. Last night was aunts and uncles and hugs and kisses and all the things we live all year for. Tonight is just being. I really thank goodness for these people. It's peaceful here. I so needed this time...

More tomorrow...or so...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Tonight, I'll finish packing, clean the house a little, load everything in the car...and then become a nervous wreck. Oh, I know...everything will be fine. I know this. Heck, I'm commuting most every other week...I'm used to packing and traveling, right?

Truth is, I don't know why I get so wiggy right before going on vacation. I will be fine once I get to Columbus and to Steinvic, but the next 24 hours is critical. I make lists. I check things off of them. I make more.

This time tomorrow, all my stuff will be packed and I'll be counting down the minutes to leaving work.

And then I'll be off for 12 days. TWELVE. I have not had this much time off since I was a 17-year old.

Twelve days with Steinvic. Twelve! In a row! Such a treat.

We'll see U2 twice while we're away. That is a luxury.

We'll return to Las Vegas for what I'm guessing is my ninth time there. (I'll have to think about that...nine?)

We'll be in Arizona for most of our time and we'll spend it with family. Precious, wonderful, real people who I absolutely love. Steinvic is not only a great person...he comes from great people. I can't wait to see them all and hug them all.

I'll get to play with two of the best dogs ever. They are so much fun!

So, I think all of this will add up to an awesome vacation. I can hardly wait!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Thank You, Arnold!

If you read here you know that I don't get political. I just don't. I don't want to impose my beliefs on you and I don't want to alienate you if you don't agree with me. So...I guess...just know that if you have a belief, I'm going to respect it, (unless you believe in hurting people or violating the rights of others...those are things I'm just not okay with.) What I'm writing about today has more to do with...just doing the right thing.

I think it's a fine thing that California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger did in signing a bill to create a day honoring Harvey Milk.

I also think is cowardly that an individual wanting to "save" California has posted a rather hot criticism about the creation of this day on his blog, but closed comments.

It's definitely appropriate to close comments in some cases. But in this case, it seems to be the equivalent of spouting off your own, close-minded ideas, covering your ears and saying "lalalalalalalalIcan'thearyou!!!" instead of having a dialogue that might broaden the mind.

The author of that post feels that what we're teaching schoolchildren about is Milk's sexuality. My personal opinion is that if you're talking about sex (outside of the basic sex ed body stuff) in the classroom, it's out of line. No teacher in a public schoolroom is going to promote homosexuality or heterosexuality. They're not promoting sexuality. In fact, sex is the last thing that should be honored on this day, no more than someone should talk about what Martin Luther King, Jr. did in the bedroom when we honor his day. I don't want to know what any public figures are doing in the bedroom! That isn't for me to think about. When I hear rumors at work, I feel the same way - none of my business, don't want to know, thanks for the So, for this dude to think that we're going to talk about sex when we talk about Milk is ignorant.

Instead, this day is about honoring an American who was courageous and exercised his right to demonstrate and speak freely. It is to honor someone who was focused and who wanted to make a difference. Great things have been accomplished by people throughout history who have taken this initiative. Milk was murdered for his beliefs, but by honoring him, we communicate that killing the person doesn't kill the dream and that Milk's life's work was not all for nothing.

I'm proud of the Governor for reconsidering what he denied a year ago and making this day happen. I think it was the right thing to do.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Clean House - New Season!

So, I logged in just now, planning to blog the first episode of the new season of Clean House and guess what?! This also happens to be my 100th blog entry! Whoo! Without further ado, let's watch this together...

10:00 - What a treat - new season AND we are all up in Niecy Nash's house! That's right...this episode is about moving Niecy's Mama into Niecy's place and thank goodness, the REAL cast of Clean House is here to do the job. (Can you imagine the strangers they've had doing the recent episodes invading Niecy's home? I think not...)

10:04 - Niecy's house is sweet! And big. But they are cramming Mama into a space that is much smaller than her own 3,000 square foot home. She's situated in a good-sized spot in the house, but it is a far cry from what she had and there definitely isn't enough space for her. And of course, Mama doesn't want to get rid of her "good stuff."

10:07 - Check out the Garage of Shame! It is PACKED to the hilt with Mama's crap! "You should be ashamed of yourself!" says Mark. But with no place to put her stuff, what's a woman to do? Oh...but the confession is that Niecy's overflow (clothes, celebrity gift bags, etc.) is lurking in the garage, too. Niecy wants the garage converted into a real living space.

10:10 - THE CLOSET! Mayhem and foolishness galore! There are like at least 200 pairs of shoes up in there. I now feel good about my 50-ish pairs.

10:11 - Welcome to the jungle! Miss Margaret has moved Niecy's furniture out of the living room and moved her own jungle print furniture in! And it is like the host from "How Do I Look" says, "animal toofari..."

10:13 - Tears! Niecy sits Mama down to explain her taste in decor. Mama explains that she needs her own space, her own style...and her own life. She doesn't wanna give up everything.

Commercial Break - Ad aside...Febreeze luminaries aren't affordable! At least not for me... $14 for a non-candle! I am sure they smell great, but dang.

10:18 - Good gosh...Niecy is crying hard and saying that she is trying to make Mama feel welcome, but she needs a compromise. "You and me need to be on the same page...respect all the way around." They shake on it and we're good to go. Let the rooting through the stuff begin!

10:20 - Ha! Niecy wants to KEEP her gift bags and goodies that she gets just for being Niecy. Mama's stuff can go, but Niecy wants her stuff to stay. Mark's designertude is workin' overtime.

10:22 - No surprise - the team lays it down...all the junk has gotta go. Niecy tells her Mama that they both have to give up the goods to make the money for the sale. If Mama gives up everything in the garage, Niecy will do the same. After a pause, Mama says, "Let it go...I'm not even going to look at it...let it go!"

10:23 - Niecy thought she could get away with keeping her closet stuff because she gave up the garage stuff. Um, no. Trish wants to do a "Niecy's Red Carpet Yard Sale" theme.

10:30 - Mama doesn't want to get rid of her jungle themed goods, and Niecy wants to keep her dressesdressesdresses. But, she agreed to thin out her collection...we knew she would, right? And Mama agrees to give up her "so very comfortable" junglefied furniture.

10:32 - The yard sale will be held at a church. Ooo! Look at Niecy's babies! They're so grown up from the last time we saw them! And helltotheno...the team showed up in weaves and flowers! How fun is that?! Mark's goatee is clashing with the hair-do. The yard sale is open and the celebrity gift bag giveaways are a big hit.

10:34 - It's so hot that the sales are dwindling off. Crap!

10:34 - Who is this fool customer, wanting the team to bring lamps to his truck so he doesn't have to get out and look himself? I'd have told him to keep on moving. What a loser...

10:37 - Hey! Niecy looks just like her daddy!

10:39 - They need $7500 smackeroonies. But just to make sure they get what they need, Niecy will make up the difference.

Ad aside...Again with the Febreeze ads. No wonder it costs so much...they have to pay for the advertising!

10:44 - Niecy and her Mama are off to The Luxe...nice!

10:45 - Niecy is designing the garage living space herself...a first!

10:47 - Closet build outs, new paint, all the little touches - pure awesomness as always. The ladies get blindfolds on sticks instead of the strap on kind - can't muss the hair and makeup!

10:53 - The Home Stretch! Take off your blindfolds and open your eyes! I love Niecy's Mama's reaction. She is freaking out. "I think the Holy Spirit is getting to her!" Matt says. Mama's bedroom is gorgeous. Same bed, same secretary, but different dressings and arrangement. Michael's picture, (Niecy's late brother), is featured on one of the walls, just like at her old place. Mama plans to "entertain" in the bedroom. "Awkward" is an understatement...

10:55 - WOW on the finished garage! It looks like a fabulous complete room, completely furnished..."This is a miracle!" exclaimed Niecy. But NOW...check out the amazing closet. (Okay, now I am feeling guilty about our closet.) It has a chaise lounge in it. And a champagne bucket that no one mentions. Mama is dancing! Priceless... About the full-length mirror, Mama tells Niecy, "Not for you!" and "Who is the Diva now?!"

10:57 - The living room...the formerly jungle fever space. Now it is LUSH...Niecy exclaimed, "I'm a designer!!" The ugly furniture is gone and the earth tones reign.

Well, people, that is it...the first episode of the new season, and we did exactly what we came to do. For Niecy and her Mama, we cleaned house. For this T&T blog, we have finished the 100th entry. And for me, well, I'm tired and missing Steinvic. We just spoke and I'm heading upstairs to end this evening that will put me one day closer to him coming home...and to our vacation that is quickly approaching. I hope you enjoyed watching with me! Let's do it again soon.