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Showing posts from October, 2010

Halloween Hijinks

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Traditional Holiday Cheek Tattoo

Some people have the idea that my work is all fun and games. Probably because I do a lot of updates like this one. ;-)

The employees on the second floor of our building were all invited to participate in Halloween activities today and I think most of them are. It’s pretty darn festive around here!

Of course, we’re decorated to the gills. Flashing skulls, graveyard scenes, screaming and howling devices, old movies playing on the wall, cobwebs, etc. abound. Most of the front area of our department and the training room are done up.

First activity this morning was a food contest. People were pretty creative and there’s some really good stuff in there for our potluck. I think some people are running around now to do the costume judging contest. I’ve seen a zombie, a witch, a guy in drag, a garden gnome, a hippie and Billy Idol wandering the halls. They guy in drag bought brand new high heels that he’s giving away...they were just “that” much too big f…

Another Blowout

I'm ignoring all the talk about how I'll die from the alleged formaldehyde that's in the Brazilian Blowout formula.

Why?

Because not only was I told I have the perfect hair for the treatment tonight, another woman in the salon asked me to show her my bangs and then asked to touch my hair after I got my second Blowout. She then told her stylist she wanted her bangs cut like mine because they look so great. NO ONE has ever wanted to mimic my hair in my lifetime.

Oh, and she said that my hair felt fantastic.

It was a great social and financial night at the salon, too. I got the Blowout on a Living Social deal for $140. That's a steal. When I got there, they offered me a beverage, "Iced tea, lemonade, water, wine..." Wine, please! I had only one glass but it was nice. My stylist and I talked about celebrity gossip (have you heard the latest Charlie Sheen story!?!?) then chatted about our travels to our respective homelands and Florida. Oh, and we talked about…

Time To Vote

I just filled out my early ballot for this year's election. I have to admit, I'm not very excited about my options. I don't think many voters are, actually. Well, the ones that aren't sheep who just vote for the party or for the candidates whose commercials they see the most aren't excited. The sheep don't think about it.

For the first time, there are more Independent voters registered in Pinal County, AZ than there are either Republicans or Democrats. Who can blame them? So many candidates pander to the extremes of their party because those extremists are really, really good at raising money and they're not afraid to use against anyone who doesn't completely follow their "suggestions". It's a total turnoff.

It's a career limiting move to be a Moderate anymore. Especially, a Republican Moderate. One would think that I, as a Democrat, would love to see the Republicans tear themselves up. I don't love it. I think it's…

Fantasy Football Update - Week 7

Much better week than last.

I won both games in my work league so I'm 8-6 which is not stellar but it does tie me for 2nd place. The leader is 12-2 so that's a long climb to surpass him.

Our club league, well, ugh. I've lost 4 in a row and sit at a 3-4 record. My starting QB (Peyton) was on a bye but I still had a chance of winning this week. Unfortunately for me, my opponent started Kenny Britt who had an unbelievable 40 points. The most he scored in a week was 14 before that.

In very happy news, Green Bay won and that's all I'm going to say about that. ;-)

Time To Change It Up

I admit I've been neglecting my blog. Facebook is just so easy for posting pictures and quick little notes that it's easier to do things there. However, I need to get back on it and decided that it was time to pretty it up and put in a new template. It worked OK but somehow I lost my commenting service. I'm just going to go back to Blogger commenting.

Book Review - The Atlantis Complex

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The Atlantis Complex by Eoin Colfer

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Crisis abounds in this Artemis Fowl book. Artemis is suffering from a mental psychosis, a dangerous villain plans his escape from prison, Butler and Juliet are attacked in Mexico and Holly and Foaly come under fire as well. So, pretty much all is usual. ;-) It was an enjoyable read with some funny stuff as well as dangerous situations. A nice touch is Artemis' Mother trying to make him more like a "real boy".

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More Fun At Work

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Another holiday, another reason to decorate the office and have a potluck. The potluck is set for next Friday. The decorating started but it's nowhere near complete.


Rosie in her Halloween Outfit


Oh, scary!

I saw this skull at Pier One last night and my first thought was, "Please don't let that cost a gazillion dollars because we have to have it!" Fortunately, it did not.

The ultimate look will be a graveyard. I expect it will be fully developed by end of business on Friday.

So, This Is What George Does All Day!

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Fantasy Football Update - Week 6

Fantasy Football sucks.

The end.

Concert Review - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

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Today is Chuck Barry's 84th birthday which reminded me that I haven't written about this show yet. Read on...

I should call this "The Show That Was Never Going To Happen." I saw a notice for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers with opener Joe Cocker early this year. Really early. I think the show itself was set for May. I can't really remember because it got postponed until September because the new album wasn't ready for release.

So, we opted out of getting a refund and waiting until September. Neither of us had seen either act live and I'm learning that these old rock dudes may keel over at any time so it's best to check them off the musical bucket list when you get the chance.

By the time the show date came around, Joe Cocker was out and ZZ Top was in. I thought about it and decided that was an OK trade since I've never seen them live before and, well, see paragraph above.

However, the day of the show, TRS was looking into our transportation pla…

Book Review - The Awakening

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The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


This second book in the series takes up right where the first one left off. Neophyte Necromancer Chloe is held captive by a group of scientists who are using supernaturals more like science experiments than peers. She's soon on the run again, unintentionally raises some dead things and, with help from her friends, tries to figure out the whole puzzle.

Armstrong's done a good job of preserving the supernatural style of her adult books while combining it with the lives of teenagers. Some of the kids are annoyingly reckless but it fits with their ages and experience.

I'm off to reserve the next book at the library.



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Book Review - The Atlantis Code

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The Atlantis Code by Charles Brokaw

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Some day, we'll all stop using a comparison to The Da Vinci Code when we talk about this style of book. That day won't be any time soon, though, as Dan Brown really captured the world on that one.

This book's hero is a world renowned linguist/professor who gets involved with the search for five ancient instruments that could, when used together, bring about another Biblical destruction. Yep, from the hand of God.

Joining him in his quest is a TV crew and a Russian police officer on a mission of revenge. Going against him is a secret group funded by the Vatican. There's lots of violence and tearing around the globe and even some sex as the professor is quite the hottie.

I think what I liked the most about this book was that the male professor, while capable in his own world, didn't turn into some superhero action figure. That was left up to the female police officer and she's more than capable.



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Book Review - The Summoning

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The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Armstrong moves in to young adult fiction but it's not a kiddie book at all. I plowed through this in just a few hours and I can't wait to hit the next ones in the series.

Chloe is a somewhat typical rich girl. She attends arts school, has a Father who is more tied up in his business than in his family and is trying to find her way in life. Oh, and she sees ghosts.

After a breakdown of sorts at school, she's sent to a care facility where she's told she has a mental illness as do the other teenagers staying there. All is not as it seems and, being an Armstrong novel, it turns supernatural.

Good stuff.



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Book Review - Bearers of the Black Staff

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Bearers of the Black Staff by Terry Brooks

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


This is set 500 years after Hawk led men and elves to the valley and locked them in with protective magic. The magic is failing and there are invaders waiting to move in. It's left to the last Black Staff carrier, a pair of human trackers and an elvish princess and her cousins to sound the alarm.

This is a typical Brooks storyline. Young people forced in to accepting responsibility for the protection of their people while those passing on the responsibility fall. That's not a knock because Brooks manages to make the world and the characters interesting. I just wish it wasn't quite so predictable.



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Fantasy Football Update - Week 5

Dang, I missed an opportunity to knock off the only undefeated team in our Parrot Head league. It looked promising going in to Sunday's afternoon games but I only had a 2 point lead on Monday and he had Adrian Peterson and the Jets D so that lead evaporated quickly.

The good news is that the wins and losses in my division worked out perfectly. I still have a one game lead in first place with a poor 3-2 record. Steven's one game behind me and I found myself in the position of having to root for him to lose so I can hold on to my lead. Family matters less than fantasy football. ;-)

I rocked it in my work league, though. I won both two games by a bunch of points. My record is now 6-4 (we play two head to head games each week) and I'm tied for third place. The leader is 8-2 so first place is in reach if I can pull out a few more good weeks.

My New Camera is Here!

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Oh, man, I was so excited tracking my new camera today. I saw that UPS delivered it at 1:39 PM. Wouldn't you know it? I ended up with an 11 hour work day so I didn't get home until 7 PM. It was killing me, I tell you!

I busted in to the box within a minute of walking in the door. George helped me open it up, too. Apparently, there were interesting smells in the box along with the camera.

Disappointingly, the battery for the SD1400 is different than the one for the SD1200. I was hoping I could have a spare battery for long trips but that is not to be. It also meant I had to wait for the new battery to charge before I could play. Fortunately, that didn't take too long.

Here are the first pics on the new camera - I need to play with outside and daylight views and learn the new settings so all of these were automatic.


View of the hi-def TV screen. No flash.


The Baby in one of her usual lounging spots.


Close up of George on the kitchen counter.


Slightly pulled back view of G…

Made Of Money...

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I've been feeling flush ever since I paid my car off. This is despite dropping $2K on repairs right before I paid it off but I had that in my savings account so I didn't really feel the pain in my income stream.

So, have I been saving money? Um, no. I have been more prudent than I thought I would be with my newfound dollars but I'm spending like I'm rich. My hair alone is requiring a small fortune to maintain (but it's worth it!).

The latest expenditure started off with a simple visit to Staples with my buddy T. He had to drop off some empty toner cartridges for recycling so we did a little walk through the store to see if there was something we absolutely needed. There wasn't anything I needed but there was something I wanted. A new camera.

In defense of my spending ways, I've been thinking about replacing my digital camera for a while. I've been buying Canon ELPHS for years and love them to literal pieces before upgrading to a new one.



The Old Cam…

Book Review - Frostbitten

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Frostbitten by Kelley Armstrong

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I missed this one when it came out but that's OK with Armstrong's books as she focuses each one on a different character. I didn't feel like I missed a chapter in the ongoing story at all.

This book finds the only female werewolf, Elena, looking for a mutt (non-Pack werewolf). The trail leads to Alaska where hubbie Clay joins her and mayhem ensues.

I like Armstrong's books a lot because, even though the story lines are paranormal, the characters deal with true life emotions and situations. Elena is one of my favorite characters as she's made the best out of a crappy beginning of her life while accepting that her early years will still affect her.

This is a good series that I don't see flagging at all. That makes me happy.



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Blowout Follow-up

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I was sitting at a co-worker's desk today and she said, out of the blue, "Your hair looks great like that. It must have taken you a long time to do." I was happy to report that it took me a mere eight minutes to do.

Yep, I've timed it because I knew y'all would want to know for my follow-up report on the Brazilian Blowout. It's been 7 1/2 weeks since I had it done. That makes it about half way to when they said it would wear off as it's supposed to last up to three months. I've also had one coloring treatment that didn't seem to affect it at all.

Is it still bone straight? No, unfortunately. The hair underneath on the back of the nape of my neck has moved back to wavy. Not yet frizzy and snarly like it used to be but still starting to show signs of its old behavior. If I let it air dry, there's definite texture there.

However, if I blow-dry my hair, it turns out quite straight and, more amazingly, not frizzy or Bozo the Clown like as it …

Fantasy Football Update - Week 3 and 4

OK, I just couldn't stomach writing about last week until now. Monday Night Football probably gave me an ulcer for life. Not only were my Packers self-destructing to the Bears (the Bears!), I was both starting and playing against the same players in Fantasy Football. The main one being Aaron Rodgers.

In the end, I would have been OK with the fantasy loss if Rodgers and company had come back to win the game but I ended up with a 2 point victory. Which is good since it put me at 3-0 and firmly in first place in my division. I didn't fare as well in my other league where I split the games.

This week, the club league looked just brutal in projections and it turned out to be so. I played against Arian Foster, Maurice Jones-Drew, Rashard Mendenhall and Zach Miller. I don't want to actually do the math but I think any combination of the three could of beat me.

OK, I did the math and as long as Foster was one of the three, I was sunk.

The good news is that in my work league, I…

Book Review - Full Moon Rising

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Full Moon Rising by Keri Arthur

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Interesting start to a series. Set in the near future in Melbourne, the story revolves around a female half werewolf, have vampire who works for an agency that keeps non-humans under control. Lots of sex and violence and a story that was somewhat predictable but sets up a series quite nicely.



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Book Review - Undead and Unfinished

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Undead and Unfinished by MaryJanice Davidson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


This series started out pretty light and fluffy but it took a dark turn a couple of books ago and even more so in this book. Betsy and her sister Laura the Antichrist agree to visit Satan in hell so that Laura can learn more about her heritage (she's Satan's daughter) and learn to control her powers. The two jump through time and, well, I don't want to put in spoilers in but let's just say this had a dark, surprising ending. Looking forward to the next one.



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144 Books in 2010 Update

Holy cow, I've managed to stay on pace. I finished 108 books through September. If I'd just stayed home one night this week, I would actually have been ahead for the first time because I'm almost finished with the last Betsy Taylor book from Mary Janice Davidson.

I can see the home stretch but I can't slack too much. We have a lot of trips still to make this year and not all of them are going to be conducive to reading.