Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dominican Republic

Paul and I went to the Dominican Republic last month.  It was a fantastic, wonderful trip!  We spent all day, every day on the beach.  Each morning we strolled down to get our favorite spot and found ourselves in the company of pretty much the same people every day.  There was a couple from Jersey.  I feel certain that he was in the mob.  They were about 60-ish.  She wore her bleach blonde hair in a long braid and had a different bikini for each day.  He was a short, round bellied man and they both smoked like fiends and drank like fish.  They argued a lot and fairly loudly, but they were also sweet together.  They went swimming in the ocean and then she would stand on the beach and wait for him to finish so she could be sure he was safe.  A couple times she shook her head at me as if saying, "Mafia bosses, what are you going to do with them?"  Every morning they took pictures of each other in the surf.  I imagined that maybe they couldn't take pictures together because they are in the witness protection program. Sweet.

We saw all the shows that we could stay awake for, they were at 9:30 after all.  I had a fantasy of becoming one of the lounge singers.  Really, they have it made.  They stay in paradise and work for 2 hours a night.  I wouldn't have to learn the songs because somehow I knew all the words.  Except for the fact that I can't sing AT ALL, it would have been the perfect job for me.
There was a family there that I totally stalked the whole week.  I became fascinated with them.  If you haven't seen "Wedding Crashers" you need to move on to the next paragraph because this won't make any sense to you all.  But...there was a young couple getting married.  The mother and father of the bride were quite wealthy and flew the family in for the wedding.  The mother of the bride wore tight white capris and bright blouses every day and danced very provocatively with her new son in law and also with any male employees that were standing around.  I felt certain that her name was Kitty (and she made people call her Kittycat.)  There were cousins, the cool lesbian aunt and several distinguished looking older men who wore white pants every night.  One evening the grandmother got a little drunk and thrashed around on the floor, dancing, gyrating her hips in a very un-grandmotherly fashion.  They were fascinating to me.  I'm sure I creeped them out with my staring.  

We met another couple and went out to eat with them a couple of times.  We went to an Asian place (if you know Paul Boddeker, then you know that this is not his comfort zone.)  He left it me to order and I felt pretty weird about it because I was a bit out of my comfort zone as well.  So, I faked it.  I ordered us wine, a salad, sushi, and then the entree.  I didn't know what a lot of the food was, but I definitely know that we like tempura.  So I ordered it.  What kind of tempura?  Well, it was tendon.  Which I thought was ten-DON (rhymes with come ON)  whatever that is.  So, that is how I ordered it.  But, it was actually TENDON (rhymes with tissue connecting muscle.) It took me until the next day to figure that out.  Beverly Hillbillies eat sushi.  

Paul was amazed by this parrot.  I have to admit that it was pretty cool.  The next day I walked back by on my way to the gym and saw a woman who had just had a shiny, diamond necklace yanked off her neck by this bird.  I could see the jewel in the parrot's beak and tried to convince the woman that she absolutely DID NOT want to stick her fingers in that bird's mouth.  I was incredibly helpful and told her that the sign right there says to not wear shiny objects around this bird.  Actually the sign said "shinny" objects so maybe that is what threw her off.  Then I suggested that maybe she just wait around until the bird pooped.  But I didn't have details about bird poop, so I couldn't tell her about the digestive system of the parrot.  An employee walked by and said that this happens often and if you can't recover your jewels, then they just put the parrot in a cage and have it live in the room with you. Paul wanted me to tell the staff we lost something just so that we could have a parrot in our room with us.  It would have been kinda cool. 
I was fairly certain this was the location of the yoga class.  Every time I walked past them I thought, "Hmmmmm, maybe one morning I should get up early and join in a class."  Then one night I noticed that these were actually lights.  Whatever.  I still could have done some yoga on them.

We talked to this girl every day at least twice.  

Of course you still have the same kind of guests that you always get no matter where you vacation.  One night I was sitting outside reading and they were standing outside smoking and talking.  I was doing more eavesdropping then reading actually.  Here is a quote from the neighbor, "Oh, yeah, I can justify the shit out of some shit!"  Well said young man, well said.  

Friday, May 11, 2012


This post is a bit late, like a whole school year late, but what a year it has been!  We started a new school, different from where our other kids went.  We didn't know the teachers, the administration or the parents.  We didn't know how things worked.  I guess we were like every other kindergarten family.  We didn't know what to expect, but what a wonderful year we have had.  This lovely teacher right here is a large part of why:

Hannah made some great friends and learned lots of things.  Everything you expect from kindergarten, but I felt like she was able to do it in a warm, loving environment.  I don't know if everyone can say that about elementary school, but we are pretty lucky.

I can only hope next year will be just as great!  Look out 1st Grade!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

It Was A Feel Good Birthday

So a few months ago I turned 42 and I thought it would be great to do 42 random acts of kindness: an idea I stole from someone on Pinterest. I planned a few acts in case things didn't present themselves. Here are some of the things we did:

1. We gave a gift card to the person at Starbucks and asked them to pay for everyone's drinks. (they sang "Happy Birthday" to me!!

2. We saw a homeless person and gave him some money. 
3. We taped some gift cards to books at Barnes and Noble with a note. They sang Happy Birthday to me too!!
4. We bought balloons and took them to the children's floor at Greenview Hospital. 
5. While we were there we left a copy of To Kill A Mockingbird in the waiting room with a note telling people to pass it on.
6. We put notes on cars with lollipops telling people to have a nice day. 
7. We baked cookies and gave them to the local fire department. (I'm pretty sure they were a little frightened to eat them.  I'm not known for my cooking skills)
8. We gave some cookies and a thank you note to our mail lady.
9. We bought flowers and took them to a nursing home. 
10. We spent time talking to each person that we gave flowers to. They seemed so happy to have someone to listen to them. 
11. We taped quarters to a vending machine (and the stalked them in the parking lot to see if how long it would take people to use them!)
12. We donated items to Goodwill (then had to go back and dig one special item out of a bin that apparently was more important to someone than we had initially thought.)
13. We gathered up shopping carts in a parking lot. 
14. We gave a Kroger gift card to someone.
15. We handed out more "have a nice day cards" or if you are Hannah your note said "Stranger Hell"
16. We put some coins in a playground for children to find (we are really hoping a small child did not find them and choke on them!) 
17. We handed out lollipops. 
18. We saw a man holding an advertising sign and we took him a hot chocolate. 
19. We put some more notes on cars. 
20. We bought someone's lunch at Panera. 
21. Donated to the Ronald McDonald House.
22. Donated a gift card to a person in the Toys R Us parking lot. 
23-39 Handed out lollipops to strangers. 
40. Wrote a note to our sweet neighbor 
41. Let people in front of us while driving. 
42. Held the door for people when we entered buildings. It was so super fun!! I hope to do this every year!