Life list

June 15, 2010 at 10:22 am (Random, Travel, Uncategorized)

I know this is commonly referred to as a “bucket list” but I find the term a bit macabre, so I’m just going to say that  these are things that I want to do.

I have been fortunate enough that I have been able to do some things that were on my list so I’ll start with just a few of those.

Denali (Mt. McKinley) – the highest peak in N. America.  I did not actually climb, however we took a teeny 4 person airplane and landed on a glacier high in the mountain range, a terrifying but amazing experience.

Stonehenge – it was a little disappointing.  I’m glad I saw it, but I was a little let down.

Mt. Kilauea – went to Hawaii and saw the volcano erupting.  Had to hike at night in the pitch black with only a flashlight illuminating the path laid out by reflective tape across the now hardened lava to the viewing area.  It was amazing to see the glowing reds and oranges  from the lava flowing out to meet the ocean.

Now, the list of things to do:

Attend the Olympics – Preferably summer, though it would be great to go to both.

Major sporting events: attend the 4 Grand Slams (US Open, French Open, Australian Open, Wimbledon), World Cup,  Super Bowl

Machu Picchu – I would love to go there and see it

Mt. Everest – much like McKinley, I have no interest in actually climbing it, just seeing it.

Pyramids in Egypt

Great Wall of China

Antarctic –  I want to take a cruise, there are some that leave from Argentina that take you to see the glaciers and the penguins in Antarctica.

U2 in Ireland – I think this is like Mecca for u2 fans and I am one, so I do plan on making this happen!!

Skydive

See a space shuttle launch.  *quick side story: When I was in elementary school, I went with my parents on a family vacation and our intention was to see a launch.  Well the weather was bad, so the launch was delayed, we extended our trip by a day to see the launch.  Well, it was delayed again and my parents had to get back to work and I had school, so we were not able to stay.  The next day the shuttle launched – and then exploded mid-air.  It was the Challenger.  We have photos of it sitting on the launch pad the day before it ended in tragedy.

Go to Germany during Oktoberfest

This list is not set in stone and I’m sure there are things that I will add to it or that I’m forgetting.

So – what are some of YOUR things?  I’m curious to see what is on other people’s lists of things to do!!

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The soundtrack of my life

May 2, 2010 at 10:14 pm (Concert, Friends, Music, Opinion, Random)

Last week, I was in my car listening to music and all of a sudden I heard it.  One of “my” songs.  One of the songs that I consider to be in an elite category.  This one happened to be Southern Cross.  I turned up the volume and listened to the words and remembered the times I had heard it before and how much I loved the song.  Music is everywhere.  You can’t escape it.  Some people listen to music as background.  I don’t.  I have always been very in tune with the music that surrounds me.  I listen to lyrics and they can at times deeply affect me.  Of course there is the fluff, the silly music that I listen to and enjoy just because.  But there is always the other stuff, the song that you haven’t heard in 15 years that can make you stop in your tracks and transport you to a moment or a time in life.  I can’t listen to music without hearing the words.

I also have an innate ability to recognize songs and artists that makes most people refuse to play any kind of music trivia game with me.  It’s just something I’ve always been able to do, I certainly don’t study or work at it.  My taste in music is wildly eclectic and includes just about every genre from the 1960’s through now.  As a kid, I listened to classic rock because it’s what I was exposed to, I knew all of Led Zeppelin IV when I was still in grade school, my love of the Doors began when I was still in single digits.  Obviously artists come and go and tastes mature and change but the fundamentals are still there.  While a lot of my friends were listening to New kids on the block, I was listening to Motley Crue, Skid Row, and Poison.  I loved it.  Whenever I turn on Hair Nation in my car on XM, I find that I can still sing along with the lyrics and I can remember listening to those songs so many years ago, and there is a kind of innocence about that.

There is, as anyone who knows me at all can attest to, a special place in my heart for U2.  I have been a fan for as long as I can remember, I have been to every concert they have played in south florida since about 1990 – except one because I was out of the country and I’m still sad about it.  Their music as a whole has more meaning to me than anything I have ever heard.  Not every song or every album has had the same effect on me.  However, there are some songs that I can listen to and be moved in a way that nothing else can do.  To name a few songs, Kite, Moment of Surrender, Where the Streets Have No Name, All I Want is You, One, Sometimes You Can’t Make it on Your Own, Electrical Storm, The Sweetest Thing.  I have heard most of those live and to hear a song that has meaning to me sung live by a band who I admire so much is truly a spiritual moment.  Moment of Surrender, off their most recent album, caught me from the moment I heard it.  I can listen to it over and over and over again and it gets to me every time.  When I went to see them in Tampa this past fall and heard them sing that live, I wish I could capture that feeling and that moment and replay it whenever I need to.  My all time favorite, All I Want is You, was featured in the movie Reality Bites.  It’s haunting and sad and beautiful.  I will post the lyrics to both of those at the end, the rest can be looked up if anyone is curious.

Aside from U2, there is a whole list of other artists who I consider superior to the masses.  Paul McCartney, The Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, Billy Joel, Jimmy Buffet, Pink Floyd, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, Beastie Boys, REM, Oasis, Pearl Jam, Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young, Eagles, Doors, Queen to name a few.  I’m sure I’m missing some, but those are the ones who I can recall right now.  I’m not going to list all the songs that I would put in the category of outstanding or that can really captivate me, but there are a lot.

It’s amazing how a song can bring back a memory so viscerally and truly make you feel as if you were in that place again.  Sometimes this is good.  When I hear a song that brings me back to a happy time, songs that were playing when I was out having fun with friends, or that remind me of high school dances and football games.  Those songs that have the power to bring me back to a happy place and time are priceless.  But then there are the songs that bring back bad memories of heartache, or not so fun moments.  The only one that I can think of that I still have a hard time listening to is Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here, I won’t go into the reasons why here, but for a long time I couldn’t listen to it at all, and now only sometimes, but it always makes me think of the same thing and always makes me sad.  I’m sure there are others, but that one stands out.  There are songs that can make us feel empowered or emotional, can help us get through tough times, or inspire us.  There are songs that are important in a certain stage of our life, but not so much in others.

I think this is a testament to the songwriters and performers.  It’s an amazing thing to be able to write a song that is powerful enough to have such long-lasting effects on people.  As I said at the beginning, I know not everyone is as affected by music as I am, but I’m glad that I am.  And when I meet someone who has the same affinity for music and lyrics as I do, I can’t help but like them immediately.  I love when I’m blindsided by an old memory or a not often thought about moment.   I love that I can so quickly be 13 again when I hear Every Rose Has Its Thorn.

As promised, lyrics:

All I Want is You

You say you want diamonds on a ring of gold
You say you want your story to remain untold.
All the promises we make
From the cradle to the grave
When all I want is you.

You say you’ll give me a highway with no-one on it
Treasure, just to look upon it
All the riches in the night.

You say you’ll give me eyes in the moon of blindness
A river in a time of dryness
A harbour in the tempest.
All the promises we make, from the cradle to the grave
When all I need is you.

You say you want your love to work out right
To last with me through the night.

You say you want diamonds on a ring of gold
Your story to remain untold
Your love not to grow cold.
All the promises we break, from the cradle to the grave
When all I want is you.

Moment of Surrender

I tied myself with wire
To let the horses run free
Playing with the fire
Until the fire played with me

The stone was semi-precious
We were barely conscious
Two souls too cool to be
In the realm of certainty
Even on our wedding day

We set ourselves on fire
Oh God, do not deny her
It’s not if I believe in love
But if love believes in me
Oh, believe in me

At the moment of surrender
I folded to my knees
I did not notice the passers-by
And they did not notice me

I’ve been in every black hole
At the altar of the dark star
My body’s now a begging bowl
That’s begging to get back, begging to get back
To my heart
To the rhythm of my soul
To the rhythm of my unconsciousness
To the rhythm that yearns
To be released from control

I was punching in the numbers at the ATM machine
I could see in the reflection
A face staring back at me
At the moment of surrender
Of vision over visibility
I did not notice the passers-by
And they did not notice me

I was speeding on the subway
Through the stations of the cross
Every eye looking every other way
Counting down ’til the pentecost

At the moment of surrender
Of vision of over visibility
I did not notice the passers-by
And they did not notice me

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Speaking up

May 2, 2010 at 4:17 pm (Opinion, Parenting, Random)

I’m 32.  I don’t have an issue with that, and I certainly don’t feel old, quite the opposite actually. But,  I have learned some things along my way to 32.  I’m not going to go on and on about wisdom and experience because I know that there is still a lot of that left out there for me to learn.   I am going to talk about one particular aspect of getting older that I’ve noticed.  I don’t care as much what other people think anymore.  I’ve never been a particularly shy person.  I have been known to speak my mind and I’ve never been one to back down from a confrontation.  In high school I was voted Most Outspoken and I was president of my speech and debate team. But even I would sometimes bow to peer pressure and popular opinion.  Or I would laugh at jokes that I thought were offensive or not say anything if someone was talking badly about a friend.  Not so anymore.

I am so much more secure in who I am now than I was.  This did not happen overnight, nor was there one catalyst.  It was a gradual change, but one that I have really taken notice of recently.  I know who I am.  People can like me or not.  I hope they will respect me for speaking my mind and standing up for what I believe, because I do those things passionately.  I am offended by racist jokes and comments.  And there was a time where I would just smile and nod, now I will speak up.  It may be embarrassing to the offending person, but that’s their problem not mine, I won’t tolerate it.   I will not stand for anyone hurting my friends or talking badly about them in my presence.  I can hold a grudge and I will speak my mind.  I have been a liberal even when that was a bad word,  I will continue to be liberal.  I do believe that anyone who is pro-life and pro death penalty is a huge hypocrite.  I think anyone who is a bad tipper is a bad person.  It may be a small thing, but it’s a good measure of a person’s character in my opinion.  I have no tolerance for stupidity or ignorance.

Opinionated, stubborn, argumentative are all words that have been used to describe me – no problem.   I don’t like women who back down out of habit, even when they know they’re right.  I don’t think crying is an acceptable form of expressing an opinion or reacting when angry or confronted.  Cry when you’re sad or hurt, but for god’s sake please don’t cry when arguing with someone or in a professional setting!!! Nothing makes me roll my eyes more than that.  Don’t change your opinion and position depending on the person with whom you are speaking.  No one will take you seriously.

I don’t need everyone to like me.  I know that as a teenager it was important to me that people like me and that I was doing things that were in line with the majority of my friends.  And I know that’s a very typical trait for a teenager.  I have outgrown that.  I’m ok if someone doesn’t like me because of something I may have said, clearly I don’t want them around anyway.  I don’t tell people what they want to hear, I will be honest.  It’s very obvious when someone is “fishing” they will ask a question or make a comment in a certain way in order to get a response that they feel backs up their opinion.  Well, I don’t want to play that game.  If I’m upset or angry with someone, the best way to handle it is by letting them know, not letting everyone BUT that person know.

As the mother to a daughter, I do hope that she grows up to be strong-willed and opinionated and learns to speak her mind.  I already see those things in her, even at 2.  And as much as it frustrates me to have a strong-willed toddler, I would choose that every single day over one who acquiesces because I know that as an adult, speaking one’s mind is a trait that I admire.

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The importance of shoes.

January 11, 2010 at 1:33 pm (fashion, Opinion, Random, Uncategorized, Weight Loss) (, , , , , , , , )

I am a shoe-holic, or is it shoe-a-holic?  Whatever.  What is it about shoes that women love so much, I’ll clue you in on the secret.  They always fit.  Of course there are exceptions to this, but I can gain 5 pounds and my jeans will be tight, but my shoes, they still fit.  No judgment from them.  I can usually be seen wearing flip flops.  I love  them and have endless pairs.  I have all kinds, casual hanging out ones, and nicer going out ones.  I have cheap Target ones and I have Coach and Stuart Weitzman ones, I love them all equally and wear them all.  They make me happy.  They’re comfortable, easy to put on and take off and I can always show off my pedicure! I am fortunate to live in South Florida so I can wear flip flops year round, except for a few cold days.

But, flip flops are not always appropriate foot wear.  For those times when they are not it’s time for fancy shoes.  And nothing makes me feel better than wearing a pair of fabulous super high heels.  I am short so I have always preferred my heels high.  Even for my wedding I went with a pair of 4″ heels.  They are not always comfortable, but always worth it.  Since I don’t own as many heels as flip flops, I do tend to buy pricey ones.  I have the usual variety of strappy heels, closed toe, black, ivory, and the one impractical fuchsia strappy heels.  I love looking at them in my closet.  I do have a particular fondness for Stuart Weitzman.  I have quite a few of those, including the afore-mentioned wedding shoes.  I just got my first pair of Manolos and I’m waiting for the perfect occasion to wear them!  My dream shoes are Mary Jane heels, I have been searching for just the right pair for a long time and haven’t found them yet.  They’re either too low, or the heel is too chunky, I know I sound like Goldilocks, but it’s true.  I will keep searching until I find ones that are just right.  When I wear these fancy shoes, I know I have them on, even if no one else does.  It makes me feel sexier, walk taller, and I’m happy 🙂

Then there are the in-betweens.  The low heels that can be worn casually with a pair of jeans or with dress pants.  These shoes are very important.  They can dress up an outfit or be dressy enough when needed without the discomfort of the heels.  I have these in lots of colors.  They are all basically the same – strappy sandal types.  They get a lot of use with me.  As I mentioned, I’m short so I do like to wear at least a small heel when I go out to make me a little taller.

I also have a million sneakers, but not because I work out a lot, it’s just a side effect of having worked for a tennis tournament for almost 10 years.   And I also have a few closed toe flats, these are my least favorite but sometimes necessary.

I know not everyone has this obsession with shoes.  Some people like purses, sunglasses, clothes, etc.  But, me?  Shoes are my vice.  The thing that I would spend a lot of money on and not feel guilty.  For me they are a necessity and they are important to my psyche.  They can cheer me up.  Even when they hurt, they make me happy!!!

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My version of reality television

August 2, 2009 at 1:34 pm (Environment, Random, Television)

No, I don’t watch The Bachelor, or Bachelorette, So You Think You Can Dance, or Project Runway.  I don’t like Reality TV (with the exception of American Idol).

I do, however, love the real reality shows and this week marks the best of them all – the highlight of my year – SHARK WEEK!!!!!  I will be glued to the television watching the new shows and the old shows that I’ve seen a million times.  I am fascinated by sharks.  And terrified of them.  I rarely go to the beach, and when I do, I will only go swimming if the water is crystal clear and I won’t go out too far.  I prefer pools.  When we were in Hawaii – I went in the ocean ONCE and that was snorkeling in a closed off bay, and even then I was scanning the waters around me for predators.  So why do I watch with such rapt attention?  I think they’re amazing creatures.  I do not believe they are man-eaters, I think they only bite people when they are confused and think we are fish.  We are going into their home and their environment and they are acting out of instinct.  They are beautiful and they are  the apex predators.  So you know where I will be every night for the next week.

Aside from Shark Week, the other “reality shows” I love to watch are all similar.  Deadliest Catch – a show about Alaska crab fisherman.  Great show and the guys who go out there year after year are courageous and do something that I would never do.   Shows you that you really do need to respect Mother Nature.

Next, Whale Wars.  This is a new one, only in its second season.  This chronicles a group whose mission it is to protect the whales in the Southern Ocean from illegal killing by Japanese.  The Japanese claim to be doing it for “research” but I don’t think anyone actually believes that.  If I was younger and single and didn’t have a baby – I would volunteer for this organization.  I strongly believe in what they are doing.

A couple others I enjoy – Ice Road Truckers, not as good this season.  Greesnburg – documents the town of Greensburg, Kansas which was wiped out by an EF-5 Tornado and it’s struggle to re-build itself green.

So, am I a dork?  Probably.  But I think I would do really well on Jeopardy!

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First trip to Disney World

December 11, 2008 at 3:07 pm (Cooking, Home Improvement, Movies, Random, Sleep, Uncategorized)

family-pic

For Alexis, not me.   Marc and I go every year to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas.  We went the first year that we were together and have been going every year since.  We buy an ornament each year and have it personalized with our names and the year and its become a holiday tradition.  This year we bought 2 ornaments – one for Alexis that it Baby’s First Christmas and the one for us now says “Adlers” instead of just our first names since there is one more of us! It was cold this year, actually it’s usually cold.  It’s a nice change.

The trip itself was fun.  We arrived at the park at 4 when we’re allowed in.  Alexis first had a bottle then promptly fell asleep.  We went on some rides.  When she woke up we took her on Its A Small World and she was fascinated.  She was looking all around, squealing with delight.  It was so much fun to see her having so much fun.  Next we went on Winnie the Pooh and it was the same thing she loved it!! We then went to Toon Town which is geared towards younger kids and she had a blast in Minnie’s house and meeting Minnie.   Next was dinner at one of the fast food places in Disney.   She didn’t do too well with the dry burger that we had and my mom suggested taking her to the baby care place and seeing if we could get something for her there.  I didn’t know such a thing existed but she remembered taking me there when I was little.  Well this was an amazing place!!!  There were changing tables and high chairs and little people tables and chairs.  THere was also a store that sold baby food, formula, diapers, etc anything you cold possibly need!! It was great.  We got her a jar of baby food and even though she doesn’t usually eat the purees anymore, she scarfed it down, she must have been hungry!! My mom and my aunt hung out with her there while Marc and I walked around.  Then Marc and my aunt went on Thunder Mountain.  Next we staked out a spot for the fireworks show.  This fireworks show is one of the main reasons I love going so much, it’s amazing.  I have never seen anything like it.  It’s indescribeable.  There are fireworks all around you at some points – 360 degrees.  It’ s coreographed.  There are images flashed on the castle.  Alexis was spellbound.  I kept expecting her to jump or be afraid of the loud boom of the fireworks, but no, she was just amazed at all the colors and lights in the sky.   Next, I said I would stay with Alexis and the rest of them went on Pirates of the Caribbean.  I got a hot chocolate and sugar cookie (they are complementary and handed out at several spots throughout the park).  Alexis fell asleep in her stroller and I waited in the store for the ride to end.  I was noticing that it was taking a while when I got a call from my mom that the ride was broken and they were stuck.  I went to ask an attendant who confirmed that indeed it was broken.  Eventually it was working again and they got off the ride.  We then went on Thunder Mountain and watched the parade.  One final ride – the Haunted Mansion and then the park was closing and we went shopping. We ended up staying until almost 1am in the park before getting the shuttle back to our hotel.

The next day we got up had breakfast at IHOP and went to Downtown Disney where we did some shopping.  Alexis met Santa, went on a merry go round and the that was it.  We headed home.  It was exhausting b/c it was such a quick turnaround but we had a good time overall!!!!

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My toothbrush is possessed

October 6, 2008 at 10:17 am (Marriage, Random, Sleep, Uncategorized) ()

Last night I got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and when I open the bathroom door, I heard this buzzing sound.  So I follow the sound to its source and realize its coming from my toothbrush. We have the Crest SpinBrush ones that you turn on and off.  I picked it up and it wasn’t on but it was buzzing, so I switched it on and then off and it stopped.   Ok.  I go back to bed and about 5 minutes later it starts again.  I guess since I wasn’t asleep yet, I heard it through the door and Marc heard it too.  So he got up to check it out, same thing.  So, he took the battery out.  I’m going to get a new toothbrush today.

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This weather makes me lazy

August 19, 2008 at 11:13 am (Baby, Random, Sleep, Weather) (, , )

I really have nothing to say.  I have no motivation.  If it wasn’t for Alexis, I don’t think I would get out of bed!  I love storms.  Growing up in Miami, I’ve had my fair share of hurricanes and tropical storms.  The worst being Andrew and that I don’t love.  But storms like Fay, just wind and rain are great.  I could sit by my window and watch the trees blow for hours.  As long as the storm is not bad enough that I need to either A) put up shutters or B) lose power I’m happy.

The only downside is that my satellite has been going in and out which is putting a crimp in my Olympics watching!

There is no point to this post.  I just hadn’t written in a while and felt that I should at least say something!!

If you’re bored, there are new cupcakes over at my other blog.

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It’s Shark Week!!!!

July 27, 2008 at 12:56 pm (Random) (, )

That’s right, Shark Week 2008 is starting tonight on Discovery.  I love Shark Week!!!! It’s going to be a busy week for my TiVo.  I am petrified of sharks, so much so that I don’t go swimming in the ocean unless I can clearly see my feet and I am close to the shore.  And I live in Miami!!!

Regardless, I am fascinated by sharks.  I am one of those people who is a huge dork and love to watch Discovery and National Geographic.  So of course combining my love of sharks with my love of educational programming, Shark Week is just my favorite time of the year!  I am definitely looking forward to the new shows and re-watching the oldies that I’ve seen a hundred times!

It’s going to be a good week!!

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Are you living under a rock?

July 15, 2008 at 3:55 pm (Opinion, Politics, Random) (, , , )

I believe our president is, as he has declared:

Financial system is ‘basically sound’

Um, WTF? I have countless foreclosures in my neighborhood alone that point to a different picture.

Further, on the lifitng of the ban on offshore drilling he said, “I readily concede it won’t produce a barrel of oil tomorrow, but it will reverse the psychology,”  Ok – so let’s screw up our environment more and allow oil companies (paragons of virtue) to drill off our shores.  Why you ask?  To reverse the psychology.  It won’t bring down oil prices b/c it’ll be 10 years before any of the oil from that actually makes its way to our cars.  Hopefully by that time, we can come up with alternative fuel sources and not need any of it!! Living in Miami – boy I can’t wait to go to the beach and look out at the beautiful oil rigs destroying the ecosystem!

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