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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Ode to June........

good bye and good riddance......

Now, can we please get on with the regularly scheduled Judi programming?
You know....the happy, carefree, fun stuff.....

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What they didn't know......

didn't hurt me.

This past Saturday night, I was at a party where no one knew me 115 pounds ago.
In fact, no one really knew me at all.
I was there to help out a friend who has a Party Girl business.
No. No. I wasn't dancing or stripping or doing singing telegrams.
I was just running the party---keeping the fun flowing.
So the hostess could enjoy herself.
It wasn't exactly how I would have originally chosen to spend my Saturday night.
But, my friend really needed me.
And, since she's a friend indeed......
I just had to do the Party Girl thing.....

It was a fun party--with all the right ingredients--beautiful surroundings, great food, fun people, lots of wine, perfect weather....
I didn't have to help it along all that much.
So, I busied myself by helping out with the food and the drinks....
Just like it was my own party.....

As I was doing my thing---the hostess thanked me for going above and beyond what I was there do to.
Just then, the woman beside her commented "no wonder you stay so trim! you're running around so much!"
The hostess agreed "I was thinking the same thing!"
Soon, a guy nearby chimed in....."you must work out to stay in such a good shape! you are really doing it all!"
I fluffed it off--explaining that they were all so much fun that I didn't have much else to do to keep the party going so I figured I'd make sure their drinks were always filled.....
I made no mention of my Lapband or my weight loss.
After all, why give them a visual they never had in the first place?
Yes, folks, I have always been thin and trim and I work out to stay in shape.
This is they Judi know.
We just left it like that....

When it was time to go, the hostess came by to thank me for helping out.
She was so gracious and sweet--complimenting me on everything from how I was able to keep the party flowing to my can-do attitude about everything from dealing with the caterers to making a tipsy guest's dropped wine glass a non issue......
She was just so thankful and was hard not to feel very flattered.
Then, she called me a Pro!
A Party Girl Pro....well...what do you know?
I guess I've had lots of practice!
"Everyone wants to know if you have a business card!" she told me.
I explained that I was just there to help out my friend--I didn't really do this all the time.
(but, somewhere deep down....I thought.....maybe I could do this all the time)
"Oh, what a shame! You should do this for a living! It's definitely your calling!"
Hmmmm.....and to think.....I just spent the last 30 years in a career about careers....
aka helping people find their calling.....

All of a sudden.....just like that (as I snap my fingers)....I find out that being a Party Girl is my calling....

It's all about what I didn't know.....

Monday, June 28, 2010

Promises, promises......

which I intend to keep.......even if I'm a little late in making good on this one....

Last week, in a fit of blogger block, I decided to throw it out to you to ask me questions....any questions at all. And, I promised to answer them....right
Technically, I'm still within my promised promise.
Today still has about 5 more hours to go.
But, being good blogger buddies--many of you tuned in this morning to read my responses.
And, I wasn't here.....
Plus, I wasn't here yesterday.
And, you got worried.
One of you even wondered if I was trying to escape answering the questions.
A few of you thought I gave up blogging.
And, one creative sweetie even thought I got swept away on some amazing getaway without telling you.
And No.
Sunday I got swept away by exhaustion--followed up by chores and obligations.
This morning I got knocked down baby toe.
I broke it.
I never, ever run around in bare feet.
And now I know why.
My poor baby toe came in contact with a chair leg as I was running around doing laundry.
My toe is literally hanging off the side of my foot.
The laundry never made it out of the dryer.
I was too busy saying very bad words.
Morale of story---always wear shoes, never do laundry.
Shoes will always save you.
Laundry never will.
This damn baby toe hurts like hell.
Like hell.
It screwed up my entire wardrobe for today.
So, I made the best of it.
I found a pair of shoes that worked.
And fashioned my clothing around it.
And, I hobbled around.
But, at least my feet looked good.
Even if that damn baby toe hurt like a moth-a fuck-a.
Once again--saved by shoes
...... these cute, happy ones.....

Which brings me to the promised part of my blog......
Your answers.
Please keep in mind that as I answer them....I am in wretched pain.

The Prof asked.....
If you could be on the stage with Bruce while he sang any song, what song would it be?

Oh, Prof....there are so many songs. So. many. songs. If I had full use of my toes and was not in this fuckin' pain, I'd be Dancing in the Dark. And, even though I'm Born to Run....given my current state of affairs and considering I'm Blinded by the Light of my pain and I feel like I just ran a marathon on Thunder Road and my foot was run over by a Pink Cadillac....I ain't doing The E Street Shuffle. But, Prof, I'm thinking Bruce might be the only guy who could heal me I'm Countin' On a Miracle and taking a Leap of Faith that my rockin' man--the Boss--will bring me back to my Glory Days (when I could wear whatever damn shoes I wanted to) I'm going to sit here right now and fantasize about me on that stage with Bruce as he points to me and sings.....She's the One. Followed by.....Fire. Just because I need that kiss. I'll give him my best kiss. I promise.

Anonymous #1 asked these questions.....

What does your SO say about your new body?
Carmen is a man of few words. Plus, his mind is always very preoccupied So, he doesn't say much. But, I'm used to it. So, I read his mind. And what his mind is saying is that he thinks I look amazing. I'll have to tell him that's what he is thinking.....after I tell him that it was his laundry that I was doing when I broke my toe. He'll owe me a big compliment after that. I'll be sure to tell you what nice words he comes up with. I promise.

Is anyone mean to you because you lost a lot of weight (maybe your friends or family who are still fat)?
No. I'm a lucky girl. Except for the problem with my baby toe. I'll never run around sans shoes again. I promise.

Anonymous #2 asked.....

Do you miss empty nesting?

Not yet. Especially now that I need someone here to help me.....because of the baby toe and all. I'll be sure to make the most of not being an empty nester. I promise.

Jill asked.....

Do you still have PBing?
Yes, unfortunately, sometimes I do. It is one of those things that I am pretty sure I bring on myself. It doesn't happen all the time but when it does, it is not fun. It would be especially not fun if it happens while I'm incapacitated by my baby toe. I wouldn't be able to run fast to PB in private! Looks like I'll have to really adhere by the rules of the band game--eat slowly, chew well and stop when you are full. I promise.

Will you always keep your same restriction or will you let it get looser?
I never thought about this! (Just like I never thought about how goddamn much my life would be impacted by a fuckin' broken baby toe.) First things first---I would never have it loosened without cause. If I was having a problem with healthy eating and not able to eat enough, I would go to my doctor and we could figure that out together. However, in general--I try listen to my body. I got my band not only to lose the weight but to keep it off! Now that I have lost the weight--I will use my band as it was intended---I'll keep the proper restriction to make sure that I can and will maintain the weight loss. Could you imagine if I broke my baby toe when I was 115 pounds heavier? Oh my!!! I'll be sure to give thanks to my band for that! I promise.

My sister has 50 pounds to lose and her doctor will not approve the band. What do you think she should do?
Oh boy! This is a tough question. My first reaction was--tell her to eat until she gains 50 more pounds so she can get the band! Yes, it was my pain baby toe made me think that!
If I recall the rules--you have to need to lose 100 pounds or have 2-3 co-morbitities in order to qualify. It's sad when you find yourself hoping and praying that you have co-morbidities!!! But, I understand that thinking! If she is adamant on getting the band---she could definitely go to Mexico and have it done. It would be a financial commitment but there are good resources out there to help her along. Or, perhaps her doctor will help her lose the weight on a medically supervised diet. After all, 50 pounds is quite a bit of weight to lose all on your own. Although we know it's doable, it's not easy. I'll keep my fingers crossed that she'll find an answer. I would cross my toes--but I can't do that right now. I promise.

Anonymous #3 asked....

Are you going to the BOOB's convention in Chicago?

Boy, I'd really love to go!!! But, we've got some sweeping changes going on at the office right now that could definitely impact any plans I have for August and beyond. Even my vacation plans are on hold! Unfortunately, I won't even know what changes will take place until later in July. Even then, I might not know! Again....fingers crossed.....not toes. I promise.

Anonymous # 4 asked....

I am worried about how long it takes to lose weight with the band. Do you think you could do anything to lose it faster with the band? I am 52 and going to Mexico in October to be banded paying my own 100% (loan) and can't afford to keep going back for adjustments. Beginning to worry about that part of it and keep thinking it is not going to work for me after I am stuck paying this loan! I would like to hear what you and other banders might say about this.

Congratulations on your upcoming trip and banding! My first advice is this--stop worrying about how long it will take to lose the weight! The length of time is irrelevant. Yeah, I know, you think I'm delirious from the baby toe pain. No. No. No. My advice--focus your mental energy on learning how to make the band work for you. I can and will tell you that the band works. It may not be as fast as you would like it to work. But, it does work. Absolutely. You have to work with it of course. It is a tool. A powerful tool. Keep in mind that you are paying for it in more ways than one---make it worthwhile. Given the fact that I don't know much about the costs of banding in Mexico or how the fills work when you are banded in Mexico--I suggest you connect with other Mexican banders on There's a wealth of info there. Also, check out some of my blog followers who have blogs--a few of them do travel for their fills. What I do know is that if you are committed to getting the band--you must be committed to having the band. There are many, many of us who have been successful---join us! You can and will do it. It's not easy to stop worrying. Look at it this way--what if you didn't get the band?
Oh...and please stick around.....reading blogs of fellow banders will truly get you through these next months as you wait and every month afterwards.....I promise.

Lucy asked these questions....

Can you eat a whole chix cutlet parmigiana?
How big is the cutlet Lucy?
As big as my baby toe?
If so, then.....yes.
I promise.

Where do you store all your shoes?
Oh, Lucy! My shoes have a mind of their own. They can be found anywhere. And everywhere.
Which explains why I didn't have a pair on when I had my baby toe accident....
I am going to think about finding homes for those shoes. I promise.

Do you have a cleaning person?
Most of the time--yes. In the summers I don't have regular paid cleaning help because of our schedules.
Figures....just when I need it most....because of my baby toe mishap....
However, right now, I'm in between help! I had a young couple who did the work. However, they unexpectedly broke up and the woman ran off and married someone else. So, unless one of them resurfaces before the end of the summer---I'm in need of help come September.
I promise.

Thanks for askin'!

There you go......don't let it ever be said that Judi is not a promise keeper.
No matter what kind of pain she is in.

As for last Thursday's mystery

What was I doing?
I was.....Slappin' Zee Bag.....
The things you learn from your children when they come home from college for the summer.
No wonder tuition is so high these days.
They are learning things we never did.

I promise.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Enjoying my suburban sunrise.......

What's going on in your corner of the universe?

Here in my little suburban hamlet, the sun is peeking out and it's promising to shine.
So, I'm just going to sit here, sip my tea and watch the day come alive.
Maybe I'll do a little early morning dreaming.
It just feels like the thing to do......

Friday, June 25, 2010

Since we're into mysteries.......

Who is this woman?

Honestly, I have no clue.......

But, I'm going to take the weekend to think about it.......


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Imperfection is beauty,

Madness is genius.
And, it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.
I'm pretty sure I've got it covered......

Today's mystery.......what is Judi doing?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

How about if........

I let you do the talking......
well, to be more precise---the askin'

Here's the thing--I am not sure if my brain is taking a little summer time out or if I'm just more tired than usual.
I'm thinking it's both.
As I lifted myself out of bed this morning, I just wanted to lay back down, pull the covers over my head and sleep for another few hours.
But, Judiland needs me.
Yes, my world needs me 24/7.
It keeps me on my toes.....if nothing else.
My days start very early and end very late.
In between, my schedule is pretty much non stop--fielding work stuff, family stuff and just stuff.
All that stuff sometimes drains my energy and my brain power.
That's where I am right now.
And, it's only Wednesday.....
Oh, I know....I am not the only one.
Everyone's lives are filled with lots to do, lots of demands and not enough time or energy to get it all done.
It's the nature of the beast....or so they say.
I know I'm to blame for a portion of it all.
I do not know the word NO.
I do not know how not to live and breath with my family.
They ask me to jump and I say how high?
They throw their dishes in the sink and I clean them.
Laundry on the floor? No problem......
Need to eat? Please, let me cook for you....
Need someone to fix that big problem? Bring it on....
It's very tiring being Wonder Woman.

At least you can say this about me---I do what it takes.
Yep, that's what I do.
Even without a proper super hero cape.

Now, I'm not saying I'm not happy.
Because, as far as I know--I am.
Probably because my happiness depends largely on my ability to make others happy.
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.
I probably need to visit a therapist to get this all worked out.
Sorry, that ain't happening soon.
Mostly because I can't fit that into the domino-effect life I have in place at the moment.
In any case--what I'm trying to say is this--I got nothing to say today that would inspire anyone, help anyone, encourage anyone, entertain anyone.....yadda, yadda, yadda.
So, I'm going to ask you to do the asking......
What do you want to know?
Go ahead, ask me anything......if I don't have the answer, I'll find it.
Feel free to do it anonymously or in Pig Latin. I'll reply.
Whatever you need to know.....I'm your girl.
Remember.....I like to make others happy.....

So, send in your questions blog friends!
Then, check right here on Monday for my answers.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Summer--Day 2......

Trying to get into the summer groove.....

........which I must say is kinda hard when you have a day job that sticks you in a windowless basement office for many hours each day.
And, it's even harder when said office is extremely much so that I run a heater in my little office for a good portion of each day....

From an energy standpoint, it makes no sense at all....the heater, that is.
But, it is the only thing I can do.....unless I want to wear my winter wardrobe 12 months out of the year.

And, that's no way to get into the summer groove.

Last night, I decided that I really need to find a way to tell myself that it's summer....and the livin' is easy.

So, with that in mind, I made a mental list of things I can do with the time and resources I have available to me....

And, for the first time in a very long time--I actually considered going to our community swimming pool.

Going to a swimming pool would definitely make it feel like summer.

And, I was good with that....

What that means is that I'd be putting on a bathing suit and actually going to a public the same town I live in.... where I might actually run into people I know.

I wasn't trembling at the thought of it nor was I masterminding some amazing disguise.

I should probably consider this a turning point....don't you think?
All it took was 115 pounds.

Bring on summer!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sometimes a girl just has to......

hit the snooze button.....

Yes, sometimes a girl has to do what she has to do....

I'm sure you wondered where I was.
Or, maybe you didn't.....
Whatever the case---here's the scoop: I had a few other details to take care of in the wee hours this morning.
One of them was sleep.
After all, isn't it the longest day of the year?

Yes, my morning routine was thrown off today.
I didn't greet the first day of summer as I would have liked.
Which I knew would set me off on the wrong feet....
So I made sure those feet looked good....

Yes, that's me putting my feet up in my little office off the kitchen......hiding from the dirty dishes piled in the sink, figuring out what to do about my uneven liquid tan and admiring my sassy little first day of summer shoes!!!
Like I said....sometimes a girl just has to do what she has to do!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Honor they Father.......

everyday in every way......

We're celebrating Fathers' Day here in Judiland.
Carmen got his favorite bottle of Scotch.
My dad is getting lots of treats.
Cookies. Candies. Nuts. Chips. Pretzels.

My sisters and their families are coming.
But, Vince could not make it home.
I'm cooking up Carmen's favorite meal......hamburgers on the grill.
Yes, he tells me he'd rather have a hamburger than a steak.
So, hamburgers it is.
Since my father's favorite food is---everything---he'll be happy too.
And, just because I'm grilling--I am going to throw on some hot dogs, some seasoned chicken, some chili lime shrimp and some marinated veggies---portabella mushrooms, red and yellow bell peppers, vadalia onions and zucchini. Yum.
I'll whip up a few salads and make a few dips for chips and raw veggies.
A simple Fathers' Day feast for some fathers who are not that simple at all.
And, because they are not that simple at all.....I'm making myself a big batch of pineapple margaritas.
Of course, I'll share them......

Pineapple Margaritas
1 bottle Williams Sonoma Pineapple Margarita Mix (32 ounces)
2 1/2 cups white tequila
1/2 cup triple sec
1/2 cup pineapple juice
juice of 3 limes
pineapple rings and lime wedges for garnish

~Serve over ice~

Please share a memory of your father in the comment section.....

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Hey band babies, low carborettes and healthy eaters.....

do you miss pizza?

If so, today is your lucky day.
Yep, if you've been craving pizza but can't deal with the crust......after you read this post, you are gonna worship the ground my well-heeled feet walk on!
Now, I can' t take complete credit for what I am about to share with you.
In fact, I doubt I can take any credit at all...unless you count the fact that I'm sharing it with you.
You see, my sister Cathy is one of those low carbers.
It's her diet of choice.
She takes it all very seriously.
She's one of those people who make low carb fit her life instead of fitting her life into low carb.
Unlike my husband---the low carb maniac.
He transforms his world when he has his low carb mojo on.
You'll never find him without his big stick of pepperoni when his low carb life is in full swing.
And, you would swear we run a cheese emporium when he's low carbin'.
We sweep the house of all carbs, he gives up beer and he won't even eat his mother's pasta (what kind of Italian son is he?).
It makes me kinda crazy.
It works for him.
(so much so that he's getting several new pair of pants for Fathers' Day!)
But, I still complain.
It turns meal time into a real headache.
So, when my sister finds a low carb recipe that she thinks is great, she always shares.
Now, over the years, she has shared a few duds.
Mashed cauliflower in place of mashed potatoes? No thanks.
For the most part, they have been well received.
However, I have to admit, none of them have ever made it to my menu rotation more than once or twice.
Until.......drum roll please....
Zucchini Crusted Pizza
Yes, friends, this recipe is a keeper for sure.
And, just in time for zucchini season.
It really is an excellent stand-in for pizza.
Hell, it is pizza.
It's our new pizza.

Here's the basic recipe for the crust....

Large unpeeled, raw zucchini or 3 small--grated (between 1.5-2 cups)
2 eggs
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (or pizza cheese*)
(note--I also added some finely grated good quality romano cheese as well)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Cover cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Grate a large zucchini. Add egg and cheese, and mix well (I use my hands). Spread the dough onto the pan evenly (watch the middle of the crust—it can be too thick....keep working with it until you get it even) and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the crust looks crispy. Let cool.
Makes a large crust (14")

Once it's's what I did:
-dusted with some more grated romano cheese
-covered with pizza sauce (your own or purchased--I use Contadina)
-threw a handful of finely julienned fresh basil
-covered with shredded pizza cheese (from a bag))
-diced up 1/2 ball of fresh mozarella and placed pieces evenly around pizza

Returned dressed pizza to the oven and baked until all cheese melted (it took about 10 minutes)

Mine was great....but please---feel free to top your pizza any way you want!

It will be your new pizza---whether you are a bander, a low carber or a healthy eater...or not.
It really will.

It's a beautiful thing.....

So, run out and get those zucchinis right now!!!!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

If we all made it this far......

we can soldier long as we do it together.

Gee, I feel like I should break out in song after typing that.
But, singing is just not my thing.
You definitely do not want to hear me sing.....
Trust me on that one.

Here we are. We have arrived at Friday.
On Monday, I didn't think it would be at all possible that I'd still be somewhat sane by now.
But, I fooled myself.
Because here I sit on the brink of Friday....with the sun popping up outside my little office-off-the-kitchen window--alive and well.
Even if I am a little frayed around the edges.....

I got through a week I didn't think I'd ever be able to get through.
It was helped along by staying connected to myself, staying connected to the people who make me feel good and getting connected to what I really needed...
What the latter translated into was---a wonderful Jones of New York leopard print body hugging sheath dress in a size 8 P, an amazing pair of black strappy stilettos sandals with jewel detailing, an adorable leopard clutch (that matches the dress exactly!), a hair cut and having my grey roots covered.

A little retail therapy and some beauty maintenance can never hurt....

But, as much as that retail therapy and beauty maintenance worked wonders, I am here to tell you that staying connected to the people who make me feel good really did the trick....
I still had to put up with the people who don't make me feel good and who always look to me to save the world and who need me more than want me.
That's just life.
Well, that's just my life.
Right now.
I get it.
Really I do.

There's a lesson in all of this.....
And, it goes like this---
Just when you think you should run, you have to plant your feet and firmly stay in one place.
Just when you think you need to hide, you need to push yourself to come out from the shadows.
And, just when you think you need to be alone--you have to fight to join in the laughter.

Yeah, I figured that all by myself.....


Thursday, June 17, 2010 you don't want to admit.....

that all of you drank so much wine that you forgot to answer my call for help on wine selections! (except Band Groupie....a true Pittsburgher! Unlike the rest of you....that girl can hold her wine and post comments at the same time!)

But, have no fear, friends.....this is something I can forgive.....
Been there, done that.

But, don't ever steal my shoes...that's something I can't matter how much I love you.

Yes, I made it to Thursday.
No thanks to your wine help.
No matter.
I managed to survive.
When I didn't hear from you when the deadline rolled will be happy to know that I made the best of things.
I by-passed the wine store and opted to go to a little Mexican restaurant with Toni....we shared fish tacos.
We sat on the deck and soaked up the sun as we chatted about boys and shoes and fashion and our trip to New York.
I took them up on their wine special.....
I have no idea what it was.
But, it did me just fine.
So, it was a good night.
And, I'm okay this morning.
I suppose I have YOU to thank for that.
If you would have all answered me, I'd still be passed on the deck.
And Toni would be starving.
Things always work out for the best....don't they?

Note to Band Groupie....I may be stopping at the wine store tonight...thanks!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wine-ing down.......

because it's Wednesday!

You know I like wine.
But, sometimes I get into a wine rut.
That's where I am right now.
I need a wine intervention!
I need saved from my at-home wine collection!
Honestly, I need saved from so much more.
I figure I have to start somewhere....

Might as well start with the wine....

I need a new summer wash away days like today.
Perhaps a new libation traveling through my body will renew my spirit, kickstart my creative juices and energize my soul.....
If least I'll take the edge off as I try....

If I make it through today.....and I'm hopeful that I will....
I am going to stop at the wine store on the way home.
And, I'm going to buy myself a treat.
A new bottle of wine.
One I never had before.
It shall be known as Judi's Wednesday wine adventure......

Here's what I am thinking.....
I want to sit on my deck and drink my new summer wine ......
I want to watch the flowers grow (and pray the weeds just die on their own)
I'll mentally cut the grass, sneak a smoke and only think about how wonderful my new summer wine is.....
I am going to turn off my phone, turn off my brain and turn off Judiland....for just a little while.
So, don't bother calling me or stopping over or asking me for it?
Sometimes that's just what a girl needs....

Before I do any of that, though..... I need your help.

You see, I figure that by the time I get to the wine store, I will have no brain power left.
My brain will either be fried or mushed.
It will take all I have just to fight the traffic between my office and the wine store.
Plus, I don't want anything standing in between me and my goblet of in--I don't want to be walking the aisles of the wine store in search of my new summer wine.
I don't want to spend one extra second getting to wine my glass.
I have no time for frivolous wine shopping or research.

What I need--and I'm going to trust YOU to give it to me....your summer wine recommendations.....
Your personal, tried and true, beloved summer wine recommendations
My only requirements are---under $15, not a dark red (I don't do dark reds in the summer), not too sweet....

You have until 5pm EST to save me......

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

If it's Tuesday.......

that means we're just one step closer to Friday!!

Wishing my life away is definitely not the way I like to do things.
In fact, I've often tried to drive that thought home with friends and family when I'd hear them wish that time would hurry along.
Taking my own advice doesn't come too naturally to me.....
Here I sit---trying to find the upside of things.
These past few weeks have been trying.....too many things needing done and too many people needing my attention.
And, if that's not bad enough.....I'm not in the mood for either.
I'm extremely tired and extraordinarily cranky.
Two things that I'd like to think are very unJudilike.

But, at least I'm not fat.
That, my friends, is definitely the upside.....

So, until Wednesday.....when we will be one more step closer to Friday.......
I'm going to put on a pair of shoes that will make me smile and I'm sending along my wishes to you for a good, well-shoed Tuesday!
I'm a firm believer that if you have the right shoes, you can endure anything.
Fingers crossed.
Toes too.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hey Monday......

could you hold off for maybe 48 hours?

I'm not ready to take on another week.....just yet....
I need just a little more time.
Pretty please.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


She would have been 91.

Shhh..... don't tell anyone.
She wouldn't have liked that.
In fact, she would beat you with her slipper!

Today is my mother's birthday.
She would have been 91.
Instead, she remains 39 + 14 years experience.
We should all be so lucky.
To never age.
She will always remain......53.

Funny, now that I'm 51, I realize how young she was.
I've got more than two more years of living to do.....
I know she did too.

My mother was one of those older moms.
She didn't marry until later in the ripe old age of 38
She had me when she was teetering on 40.
After me, she went on to have my sisters....

Each year, when June 13th rolls around, I pause to sing to her.
I'm not a very good singer.
But I know it's a song she loves to hear.
After all, who wouldn't want to hear their child's voice?
That's what I'm banking on....

It's funny how when you lose your mother, your life changes.
You become a very different person.
You are a motherless daughter.
No pain will ever compare.
It's not an easy place to be.
You never cry over the other stuff.
You become tougher than that.
Because you are a motherless daughter.

As the years go by, you accept it.
And, soon, you become the authority on it.
Considering I've been doing it for 37 years....I'm an expert.
You run to the side of anyone who loses their mother.
You tell them how to deal with it.
Even if you have no idea how to do it.
You say comforting words.
And, you try to explain how the years will ease the pain.
Which it will.
But, what you don't tell them is that there will be days that bring you to your knees.
Like today.
These are the days that you need to dig deep.

That's just what I am doing today.
And, what I found was a reason to smile.

My mother's jock strap coasters.
The ones we found in the green cabinet in the basement.
In a Gimbel's gift box her own writing.....FOR MY HIGH BALLS.

Happy Birthday Mommy!
You definitely had HIGH BALLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

It's just easier......

to be thinner......

I know, I know, it's not a news flash.
Yet, sometimes I am so struck by this thought that I find myself completely in awe of it.
Naturally, being thinner comes with lots of perks and advantages.
But, I'm not going to list them here.
Listen....I don't have all day.
(hell, I don't even have this moment....I'm hijacking it from my Saturday duties!)

Today I am talking about the fashion aspect of being thinner.

Maybe it's just me....but I swear.....figuring out what to wear doesn't take nearly the amount of angst as it used to. Will those black pants fit? I need to find a jacket to cover up my ass! I better wear amazing jewelry so that people don't fixate on my hips!

Sure, on a daily basis, getting dressed can be a real pain the ass---especially since my closet is filled with multiple sizes--many of which just don't fit me. (no time to clean closets out lately!)
But, things ease up quite a bit in the deciding-what-to-wear arena when it comes to weekend wear.
And that's a benefit that I'm very happy about at this very moment.....
Because I do not have a second to spare, no, not one second....

You see, this weekend, in addition to my Saturday duties and commitments, we are also scheduled to attend 4....yes...1-2-3-4....parties. Three of them are family graduation parties and one of them happens to be the one I'm most thrilled about---a party at Rene's.
I know I've talked about Rene before. Rene is my dear, classy and oh-so-artsy talented college roomie who I had the priviledge of luring to Pittsburgh a few years back by hooking her up with one of Carmen's colleagues. I had just about enough of her living away from me for 25+ years---I was ready to get her into Judiland. So, I did what any respectable friend would do--I found her a man. Now, they are happily married and living in a dreamy castle about 20 miles up the road.
Going to a party at Rene's and spending time with her has always made me smile. Even when she lived umpteen miles away. She's an amazingly talented hostess, an incredibly creative decorator and a top notch cook. And, she is just a doll. Plus, she oozes class like no other. Hell, that girl had class in college. Sunday hangovers always looked much better on her---she always topped her bleary eyes with a tilted red wool beret and a pair of Hollywoodesque sunglasses. Sometimes she'd even put a jaunty brooch on her beret--especially if she needed just a wee bit of extra sparkle to off-set a rum-infused palor.
So, needless to say--I am extremely thrilled to have a Rene party as part of my weekend.
But, what this means is---I gotta look the part.
I have to be totally honest here--Rene will make a huge fuss when she sees me.
She always does.
And, of course, I will squeal with delight when I lay eyes on her as well.
I just know she will have on amazing shoes.
She just gets a thrill out of fashion.....
Sure, I can bring her a bottle of superb wine but that wouldn't get her nearly as excited as having me show up in a kicky ensemble set off with some fun baubles and some sweet shoes.
So, as far as I see it---it's my duty as her friend to make sure I get it right....

Given all of this--I've been thinking about what I will wear all week long.
But, don't cry for me--I was more than happy to preoccupy my thoughts!
Since there's no many other shit things I have to think about.
I guess you can say that Rene and fashion got me through the week.
I just can't wait to tell her that.....

I hope I don't forget my camera so I can show you just what I picked out for my party weekend......

Friday, June 11, 2010

Color your Friday.......

And, if that doesn't work......go green.....

1.25 oz Tanqueray gin
1 oz Rose's lime juice
1 twist lime

Pour the gin and lime juice into a martini shaker half-filled with ice cubes. Shake, shake, shake. Pour into a sexy glass. Garnish with the lime wedge.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Just stopping in to say hello.........

because I would miss this moment in my day if I didn't.....
My blog has become as much a part of my day as putting on my lip gloss and drinking my chai latte.
I just need to do it or I don't feel right.
So, even when the clock is ticking and my world is spinning and wobbling and everything feels topsy turvey and I am overwhelmed and overscheduled and overtired.....I always need to make the time to do the things that set my day on an even kilter....

What's going on in your world today?
Tell me all about it......

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

It's raining on my parade!

In more ways than one.
Might as well make the best of it.

I've got ....
...a leopard print umbrella
....a good sense of humor
....a bottle of Tangueray
.....a few limes
.....a great gimlet recipe
and a really cute martini glass.

Oh, and, I'm happy I'm not obese anymore.

Making the best of it in Judiland.

Until tomorrow......

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Waitin' On A Sunny Day.......

Bruce and me.....
(yes, I'm right there beside him in the car.....I got cut out of the me, I look good!)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Cardinal rule of the dressing room.........

As you stand in the three-way mirror trying to decide on an outfit you've been craving for weeks that has now just went on sale--never ask a not-so-stylish woman what she thinks of the outfit.

If you don't like her style--you won't like what she has to say.

With a few words out of her pale (no lipstick!!) lips--all of a sudden, that outfit you've been visiting for the past few weeks and dreaming about and praying it would go on sale becomes less than desirable.

Yes, that's how it went.
Toni and I took a little jaunt over to Anthropologie yesterday. It was not planned. We landed there because we parked in the upper lot of the little mall where our fav Starbucks is located. We needed our Starbucks fix pronto. But, to get there, we had to pass by Anthropologie on the way through the mall.
And,what to our wondering eyes did appear outside of Anthropologie--a sidewalk sale.
And, if that wasn't amazing enough--there--amongst the sale items--the outfit I've been lusting over. On sale. Ridiculously on sale!
It could be just the perfect thing to wear to the New Jersey wedding, I excitedly told Toni!
Toni agreed as I cheered--fist pumping my good fortune!
In one quick swoop, I picked up the outfit and raced back to the dressing room to try it on!
I couldn't risk anyone else getting their hands on my outfit!

After carefully putting it on, I emerged from the dressing room for Toni's input.
She loved it, gave it her blessing and said I should get it.
As I stepped over to the three-way mirror, a non-descript woman about my age was waiting for someone outside of a dressing room and an adorable sales person was standing in front of another dressing room.
I looked over at them and asked "what do you think?"
The boringly dressed woman spoke first..."it's too youthful for you. That's why I put it down"
I immediately questioned my taste.
I looked in the mirror once again...moving about, looking at it from every angle.

Why wasn't I seeing what she saw?
I still loved it.
The fashionable sales person looked at me in bemusement.
Toni rolled her eyes.
The woman who almost stole my outfit but found it too youthful, stood by and watched me.
I lingered at the mirror a bit longer as Toni continued to make faces at me--letting me know she thought the woman was not to be listened to.
But, I was nervous--afraid to say "but I love it and I am buying it!"
I didn't want to offend the woman with no taste.

She seemed like someone I wouldn't want to mess with.

What kind of nut case am I?
I eyed her up one more time--wondering what the heck she was doing in Anthropologie--of all places. Isn't this a place for people with good taste?
She must have been lured in by someone with decent taste.

I wanted her to leave the dressing room immediately so I could do my happy dance, tell the world I was buying it and of course--check with the cute sales person to get her opinion.
Finally, the woman in the navy blue pedal pushers, maroon empire wasted top and brown Jesus sandals (who would wear this outfit? really!) left.
When I was sure she was out of ear shot, I approached the cute sales person.
"What do you think?" I asked.
She rolled her eyes, smiling...."I didn't know what to say when she told you that!" she laughed.
"It looks great!"
That's just what I thought!
Us girls of good taste must stick together and rely on each other.
Gotta stay away from the ones who are not as blessed.....

So, that's just what I did--I stayed away from the woman with questionable taste.
I waited until she had left the store before I went to the register to purchase the outfit that she thought was too youthful.
I was just a wee bit afraid she'd see me going against her opinion....
Yes, I know....I'm a bit irrational like that....
And, when I did go to buy the object of my desire....the sales clerk smiled broadly...."one of my favorites!"
I shared my experience with her...telling her I wanted to kick the woman who said the outfit was too youthful for me. I was very dramatic.
The sales clerk laughed and told me that it was the perfect out for me.
I was thrilled.
As I turned to go, I smiled at the young girl behind me and left the store.

Moments later, as Toni and I were exiting the mall--who did I see?
The woman with bad taste....and her daughter.....the young girl who stood behind me at Anthropologie....
Clearly, the daughter had overheard the story.
And, clearly she told her mother.

They both glared at us.

What did we do?
We ran to Starbucks!
Saved once again by a Chai Latte!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Overheard at the grocery store........

Toni and I were standing in line waiting to pay for a few things at the small grocery store near our house.
There were a few customers in front of us and a few customers behind us.
It was crazy busy. Space was tight.
We were reading magazines....waiting for our turn.
I happened to be at the point in the line where the soft drink cooler resided.
On top of the cooler was a myriad of bagged snack foods--cheese curls, potato chips, carmel corn.....well, you get the picture.
Behind me, I could hear a soft voice saying "excuse me, excuse me".
When I turned around, I noticed the folks behind me looking annoyed and quite bothered as they tried to shift their carts.
Within a few seconds, I noticed the reason for the commotion---a very heavy young woman was trying to push her way to the cooler and the snacks.
When she finally made her way to where she needed to be--it required me to completely move so she could get into the door of the cooler.
Sheepishly, she looked over at me and without making eye contact she said "I need to get Mountain Dew".
Because I was in such a tight space, I had nowhere to go.
I tried--unsuccessfully---to let her through. I even tried to get to the cooler myself to get the drinks.
It was very obvious that the space was just too tight. And, there was absolutely no way to open the door.
As I tried my best to let her through and she continued to try, I too became quite agitated and annoyed.
I wasn't sure who my angst was directed towards but I am sure she could see it in my face.
I probably had a look of disgust....
No one was moving. I was trapped. Yet, the young woman continued to push against my cart in an effort to squeeze through. Who wouldn't be just a wee bit frustrated? Right?
I felt justified at the moment for being a wee bit bitchy looking.
In order for her to get to the cooler, the entire line would have to back up and I would have to get out of line. On top of that, it didn't seem like anyone was going to accommodate the woman and even more disconcerting---she was not going to stop her quest for her drinks and snacks.
It was quite the conundrum.
Finally, when the customer in front of me began to unload her groceries, I was able to move forward. I let out a big sigh as I did so.
The young woman was able to reach into the cooler to get two Mountain Dews.
Then, with a swift motion, she reached up to the snacks and grabbed three bags of cheese curls.
As she did this, she mumbled to herself....loud enough for us all to hear....."I haven't eaten all day."
She gave me a quick, sheepish smile and then scampered away.

My heart sank.
I looked over at Toni and told her I had to write about that moment on my blog.
Toni didn't quite get the story behind the story.
But, I did.
I knew it all too well.
I remember women like me.
Like me--then.
Like me--now.
Perhaps they weren't thinking I was too fat to eat snacks.
Perhaps they weren't judging me.
Maybe their looks of disgust had nothing to do with my weight.
But I was pretty sure everyone, every nook and cranny of Judiland and beyond--looked at me and said "she's fat".
And I know I felt compelled to explain.
To everyone, everywhere.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

I'm shrinking away to nothing!

Who said that?

Oh, it was me.

Yes, it's me.
I'm shrinking....

Honestly, friends, I don't want you to throw tomatoes at me or curse my name. And, I am by no means bragging or putting on any airs.
I'm just sayin'......I'm shrinking before my eyes.
Well, more accurately---my pants are falling off of me.
No. No. I'm not exposing my cute little undies in public nor am I loosing my drawers as I walk.
I am going through this amazingly perplexing phase....more like a phenomenon....where every pair of pants (all purchased in the past 2 months) are too big.
This is completely unheard of in Judiland!
Is someone coming into my bedroom and stretching them out while I sleep?

I swear when I was heavy, my dryer could shrink a pair of pants two sizes....I could always count on that. You know what I day the jeans fit or the black pants fit then you wash and dry them and the next time you go to put them on, they are two sizes too small.
Perhaps my dryer is getting old. I mean, sure, my pants are getting dry just like they did in the old days. But, when they come out, they are still the same size.
Or, maybe....just wasn't my dryer that shrank those other pants.
Maybe it was the pasta and the nachos and the fast-food-on-the-go that had something to do with it all.
Doesn't matter.
I hate laundry.
So, I have no intentions of doing any major research on the issue of dryers shrinking pants.

I'm pretty sure I told you that I think I have a stubborn body. It gets into modes and stays there with no help from me. My theory has been that when I was gaining weight, my body just kept gaining it. And, when I was losing weight, my body just kept losing it.
That was my theory..... until yesterday.
Sure, it might be somewhat accurate but not entirely.
I don't like to admit that I'm completely wrong.

You heard it here folks....
When I was gaining weight and kept on gaining weight, I am sure my body stubborness wasn't wholly to blame....
So, if I accept that, I am going to have to accept that my body stubborness has nothing to do with the weight that is currently peeling off of me and making my brand new white capris look baggy on me....
What's the deal?
Could it have something to do with my age?
You know...the shrinking old lady effect.
Doesn't happen in my family.
My grandma...who I supposedly take after.... weighed over 300 pounds when we buried her when she was well into her 80's.
And, my dad is definitely not shrinking....he's 89. Remember....he always wants to go on a diet.
Last week he wanted to join Weight Watchers (I think he just wanted to go to the meetings to meet women).
But I think he deserves those twice daily klondikes and those fist fulls of mini hershey bars.
So, no Weight Watchers dating service for him.

Then, I got to thinking about this.
It's not my stubborn body or the aging process.
It's plain and simple......I am not eating that much.
Is that crazy or what?
That's why my pants are all baggy.....
But, here's the kicker.....
I don't feel deprived. I don't feel hungry. I am not living on lettuce.
In fact, I don't eat much lettuce at all.
I'm eating candy when I want it. I have had nachos.
I eat chunks of amazing, full fat cheese. I drink wine.
I love my gin gimlets. And my martinis.
I ate loaded mashed potatoes. Twice this week.
Shit, I even ate potato chips with dip last Saturday night.
I had polenta with pepperoni and raisins last night.
I had a taco the other night.
I am still addicted to my Chai Lattes.
I devoured a crab cake with an amazing sauce made from mayonnaise the night before that!
I've been to restaurants and parties and Dairy Queen.
I am not starving.
Honestly, I am not.

Is this ME I am really talking about?
Really really?

Friday, June 4, 2010

Here comes the weekend!

But, first......I gotta tackle Friday.
I'm just hoping I don't get sacked.
Ooops....I'm using football terminology.
It's not football season.
At least, I don't think it is.
I guess I get kinda confused.
It's easy to do when you live in a football town like I do.
Football talk is always going on....all year long.
It's enough to make a girl like me very confused.
So, let's forget about the tackling and sacking.
And concentrate on what season it really is.


Happy Friday everyone!
Now, put on those white shoes and step into a great day!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

When the moon is in the Seventh House and Jupiter aligns with Mars then peace will guide the planets and love will steer the stars......

My daily horoscope told me that I am in an exciting phase.
Therefore, I should let go of anything boring......

But, my HOMEscope said.....
Don't underestimate the value of an immaculately clean kitchen. Marvel at the shiny counter; the gleam of the fixtures will draw.

Then, my LOVEscope said....
Conserve your energy when it comes to your love life for now. You may want to try a mysterious smile instead of a long, rambling.

Well, geez, my dear astrologer.....I'd just love to let go of the boring stuff and the not-so-fun stuff and the pain-in-the-ass stuff and just be in that exciting phase!
But, honestly, an immaculately clean kitchen and giving mysterious smiles just wouldn't do it for me.

So, now what?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

June storms......

are coming in......and I gotta deal with them. One way or another.

Nothing for you to worry your pretty heads about.
No one is sick or facing difficult health issues.
I'm just overwhelmed with many things and working on other things that need my attention that I'd prefer not deal with.
But, I gotta put my big girl pants on (but NOT my BIG GIRL PANTS) and deal with them.....
Just send me good vibes via cyberspace.....
And, please pray for a rainbow.
And, hey--while you're praying for that rainbow....feel free to ask for a pot of gold at the end of it.

Sometimes you just gotta do what you just gotta do.
So, even though I plan to be checking in here at my blog everyday and hopefully reading all of yours--for a little slice of sanity and a smidgen of normalness--I am not sure if I'll be babbling on as much as usual.

So, I'm going to ask you to forgive my brevity and my clandestine behavior.....just know that it's's not you.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Good Morning June........

What do you have in store for me this month?
Let's hope I make the cut.......