Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tune for Tuesday

I was torn today as to which Sixx: AM song was to be today’s tune. It was between “Life is Beautiful” and “Accidents Can Happen.” Both are stellar songs. Life truly is beautiful. Some days you need to pick yourself back up.
After studying the lyrics in each song, I ended up choosing “Accidents Can Happen.” Sixx’s lyrics and James Michael’s soulful voice make this a great listen. I was able to see Sixx: AM live this summer when they played Cruefest (see picture). They sounded just as awesome live as they are on the CD. The entire CD is great, my favorite song from it is "Pray for Me,"but this one will appeal to more people.

"Accidents Can Happen" Fave lyric:
"Take some time and learn to breathe
And remember what it means
To feel alive
And to believe
Something more than what you see"

Sixx: AM is a band formed by Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue to create a soundtrack to his book, The Heroin Diaries. The book chronicles Sixx’s worst years addicted to heroin through actual journal entries from that time and commentary from friends that witnessed it. The book also celebrates his sobriety and breaking out of that horrific pattern of life.
Accidents Can Happen is clearly a song about slipping up while trying to stay sober, but its encouraging lyrics remind listeners to take things day by day and just keep going.
Don’t give up!
Enjoy the song and video..

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Lessons from Grandma

Grandparents are special people. I recognize how lucky my children are to have all of their grandparents in a fifteen minute radius. They have another set of relatives who regularly show love and attention to them. They also have important people to look up to, learn from, and have fun with.
It’s been 15 years since my grandmother died. Like my children, I learned so many things from my grandma.
My grandparents had a cabin up north that my sister and I would stay at for two weeks every summer. We also saw them on holidays and sporadically through the year, but this was the true bonding time with them. We were especially close with Grandma Jo who was our main caretaker during those vacations.
These are some of the lessons I learned from Grandma Jo:
1. Grandma demonstrated a love of reading. She always had a book that she read before bed each night. She would read to my sister and I as well. When I was older, she’d save all of her National Enquirer magazines (okay, tabloids) for me. I would spend hours a day reading through that big stack!
2. Grandma Jo showed a love of writing. She kept a short daily journal. She also typed many letters to family and friends on her electronic typewriter. I loved typing on that!
3. Grandma loved nature and animals. We would feed the ducks together at the cabin or just sit outside and gaze at the serene lake. We also showered her dog with an embarrassing amount of attention, especially since we never owned a dog.
4. Grandma was physically active throughout her life. Even as she grew older, she played golf, mowed the lawn, and took walks. Physical fitness is a lifelong goal.
5. Grandma taught me to play the card game, gin rummy. It was relaxing, and my husband and I now occasionally play it in the evenings.
6. Grandma Jo demonstrated good sportsmanship. We would frequently play cards or board games. She always thanked me for playing and said how much fun she had with me even when I won. She would brag to her friends that I usually beat her at the various games we played. Now I wonder though if she ever let me win!
7. Grandma made some really tasty dinners and desserts. I now make some of her recipes, they are some of my favorite things to eat. Her peanut butter balls are delish!
8. Grandma would regularly watch her soap opera, "The Young and the Restless." I continue to watch a few episodes each week. Because of her, I've been watching for over 25 years. My husband's mother and grandmother also are fans of the show.
9. Lastly, her favorite outburst or expression was “Judas Priest!” We would tease her that it was her favorite rock band. Of course she had never heard of the band! Guess who exclaims “Judas Priest!” on a daily basis now?!
Don’t forget to think about and appreciate what your elders have taught you…What have you learned from your grandparents?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

All Write!

If you are a writer, I hope you are fortunate enough to have a writing group. A writing group can allow you to accomplish many things. Reading and critiquing others' work helps you grow as a writer. It allows you to read other writing styles and genres. You not only receive valuable feedback on your work, but encouragement to keep going. Lastly, it is also a time to hang out and enjoy your peers with this adult time.

My writing group tries to meet twice a month. In the past six months, we have been reading each others' stories and critiquing them at each meeting. We discuss the highlights and help point out the areas that need revision. We also take a little time to relax and chat about our lives.

Last night we changed things up a bit. We had a writing session. No critiques, a little bit of chit chat, a little wine, and a whole lot of putting the pencil to paper (or fingers to the keyboard).

Ann worked on her first chapter of her next YA novel. Angela kept busy with revisions of a story we had critiqued at an earlier meeting. Cathy continued her story that we enjoyed reading the first half previously. I finished three poems and a rough draft of this blog. It was quite a productive night for all of us.

Being busy moms, it is sometimes hard for us to carve out time to write. If you find that this is an issue, do something a little different at your next writing group meeting. WRITE!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Tune for Tuesday

Welcome to my first Tune for Tuesday. Each Tuesday I will pick a song that I think all the world should check out! I probably have a different taste in music than many of you, so go ahead and expand your horizons! (Because I probably won't...I'm somewhat stuck in the 80's still!)
I regularly record Fuse Channel's Loaded from my favorite artists. It is one half hour of music videos from one artist. Of course some videos aren't appropriate for children, but the ones that are, we have to watch over and over!
Here is a family favorite by Weezer. It's just plain silly, and it has a good message!
Favorite lines from the song:
"I'm fine and dandy with the me inside.
One look in the mirror, and I'm tickled pink.
I don't give a hoot about what you think!"
Check it out! Click on the link below.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

And the Emmy goes to...

Eight Things I Learned From the Emmy’s
1. Celebrity dudes are short. I actually kind of knew that.. I’ve read that Tom Cruise is only 5’7”, but when Heidi Klum walked out with four other reality hosts…she towered over all of them. She’s 5’9 ½’ and the average American man’s height is 5’10”. (I bet you didn’t think you could learn from my blog, did you?)
2. Steve Carell doesn’t even have to talk to make me laugh.
3. Steve Martin looks almost exactly the same as he did on SNL over 25 years ago.
4. Steven Colbert eating prunes makes me giggle.
5. If you want your child to be a comedian, name him Steve!
6. If you are a guest on 30 Rock, you’ll probably be nominated for an Emmy!
7. Denis Leary looks a bit like Josh Todd, lead singer of Buckcherry (see my previous post for picture).
8. Josh Groban can impersonate the voices of South Park characters?!

Some Picks and Some Actual Winners (Go to Entertainment Tonight for all the winners. Who do I look like, Mary Hart?)
Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother) - In his character, Barney’s words, He’s AWESOME!
Winner: Jeremy Piven - I’ve actually stood next to him when I was an extra in his short-lived TV series, Cupid. He’s short, too! (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)
Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Amy Poehler (SNL) - She just plain cracks me up!
Winner: Jean Smart (Samantha Who?)
Best Supporting Actor in A Drama Series
My Pick: ? Winner: Zeljko Ivanek (Damages)
Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
My Pick: Chandra Wilson (Grey’s Anatomy) Winner: Dianne Wiest (In Treatment)
Best Actor in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Steve Carell (The Office) Winner: Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) – sadly he didn’t call anyone a rude little pig in his speech…
Best Actor/Actress in a Drama Series
Winners: Glenn Close (Damages) and Brian Cranston (Breaking Bad)
Best Actress in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Tina Fey (30 Rock) Winner: Tina Fey! I finally picked a winner!;)

Fashion Wrap Up
Tina Fey looked smokin’, I love Kate Walsh’s sleek new, shorter do, and Vanessa Williams is one of the most beautiful women on this planet! No disses in this wrap up, I seriously think most of the celebrities looked pretty great.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Leggo my LEGO!

My mother-in-law, three kids, and I attended America’s first indoor Legoland today. As soon as we spotted the Lego giraffe peering out of the Legoland building, I knew it was going to be one super cool day.
We were greeted at the cashier by a Lego red soldier who made gassy sounds. Along with my children, I giggled, too. Farts are funny! We meandered through the building gawking at all the amazing Lego structures. The five of us were wowed by a huge replica of Chicago. Buckingham Fountain lit up. There were boats on Lake Michigan, and JD spotted Batman atop Sears Tower (which M calls Serious Tower). We then explored a Jungle with tigers, monkeys, and my daughter’s favorite, a huge snake.
Other exhibits included Indiana Jones, Spongebob, and my boys’ favorites, Darth Vader and R2D2. Photobucket
Next we rode a dragon rollercoaster. Each car seated four, and all the kids wanted to ride with Grandma, so I rode alone! Luckily I didn’t notice all the Lego bats flying around that the kids told me about later (I so don’t like bats!)…Later Mr. Brick a Brack demonstrated how Lego bricks are made with the kids help. The kids also loved making their own Lego creations and towers in the play zone. The highlight of the day, though, was the short movie titled, “Spellbreaker 4D.” If you have never been to a 4D movie, I won’t spoil it for you, but it is pretty darn entertaining. All in all, a lovely day in Legoland.
What’s not to like about Legos?!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tag! I'm It!

I’ve been recently “tagged” by a blogger from the blueboards! Thanks for welcoming me to this wide world of blogging, Brenda at http://lilfix.blogspot.com/! After I answer and post the answers, I am to tag 8 other people, who in turn will (should they choose to do this) do what I am doing...mention the person who tagged you, answer the questions below (you may change any question that you do not like and replace it with a question of your own.) I’m new to all this blogging and a little shy….so I don’t have 8 people to tag! So here’s a few! You’re it! (And seriously, no pressure, only if you want to!)

Can you tell I'm new at this? I don't know how to post the name that directly goes to the link!

My darling sister, Denise, at http://vavavroomonline.blogspot.com/ She blogs about her motorcycle apparel for women business and riding.

Rena at http://renajjones.blogspot.com/ She has great book reviews and fun posts to make you think!

Jill at http://jillcorcoran.blogspot.com/ Jill always has helpful links, and I love that she loves poetry too!

Kim at http://kimkasch.blogspot.com/ Love her pics and great sense of family!

Tracey at http://tracymcox.wordpress.com/ I got some great writing tips from Tracy's blog!

Suzanne at http://suzanne-young.blogspot.com/ A fun read, she's one spunky gal!

Cindy at http://cindypon.blogspot.com/ She's very sweet, and not sour at all like her blog title suggests!

Here are my answers...

1. What are your nicknames? Kel, Smel (from my parents and sister…I really don’t smell bad…Really! :0)
2. What game show and/or reality show would you like to be on? I’d end up saying something really dumb on a reality show so I’ll choose a game show: Rock n Roll Jeopardy! (okay that was on Mtv very long ago…) This isn’t a game show or reality show, but I’d love to be a roundtable guest on the Chelsea Lately talk show on E!. She is hilarious.
3. What was the first movie you bought in VHS or DVD? I really have no idea…some of my earlier VHS movies that I owned were About Last Night and the Outsiders!
4. What is your favorite scent? I love the smell of my kid’s hair after it is washed. Then I sniff-kiss them on the head!
5. If you had a million dollars that you could only spend on yourself, what would you do with it? That would be tough to spend it just on me…..BUT if you insist…I’d probably pay off the house, self publish the bird poetry book with my dad’s bird photos and my poetry then market and publicize it in a major way. New car, maybe an SUV hybrid and a Corvette for my hubby…A little bit of clothes shopping! And of course, front row tickets to my favorite rock concerts, too! I seriously could NOT spend it all on me…
6. What one place have you visited that you can't forget and want to go back to? Our family have our regular Wisconsin spots that we love but another vacation spot that is so beautiful and relaxing is Atlantis in the Bahamas. The pools, lagoon, food, huge fish viewing tanks are awesome for adults and kids.

Here's us the last time I was there, I was pregnant with Jack!

7. Do you trust easily? Yes and no. I like to think that most people are good people. But now with three kids to worry about, I am more cautious.
8. Do you generally think before you act, or act before you think? Sometimes I talk before thinking it out! But I generally think before I act…
9. Is there anything that has made you unhappy these days? The last two falls were extremely hard on me with different medical issues for one of my kids so I am looking forward to a happier fall this year (I hope!).
10. Do you have a good body image? My parents brought me up to be a very confident person. Even when I was a dorky ten year old with Coke bottle glasses, they told me I was beautiful (and smart and strong etc) and I believed them. I don’t have the body I had before three babies, but I have always been confident with my body in any state it is in. I just hope I can instill the same confidence in my daughter.
Here's lil me; I rocked that flannel shirt! :0):

Kelly age 10
11. What is your favorite fruit? Perfect fresh raspberries, strawberries, too
12. What websites do you visit daily? Verla Kay's (Blueboards)
13. What have you been seriously addicted to lately? The blueboards and this new blogging thing!
14. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is? So friendly and welcoming!!!
15. What's the last song that got stuck in your head? “Crazy B*#tch” by Buckcherry since I just saw them in concert…
16. What's your favorite item of clothing? My big hoop earrings! I’ve been wearing hoop earrings since I was in high school. (except I had to wear studs for several years when I had tugging babies and toddlers!)
17. Do you think Rice Krispies are yummy? I think they are delicious when they are mixed with marshmallows and melted butter!
18. What would you do if you saw $100 lying on the ground? I would look around to see if it was anyone’s. Even if someone claimed it that it may not have been theirs, I’d give it to them. If no one claimed it, I’d go out to dinner with my family that night with it!
19. What items could you not go without during the day? My kids’ hugs
20. What should you be doing right now? I should get to my laundry. I am at least writing somehow with my son snuggled next to me so that is okay by me!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Crazy B's

I like to rock out. At first when people find this out about me, they are shocked. I’m a conservative mother of three, former grade school teacher, live by the rules kind of gal. I’ve never tried a drug in my life, my husband refers to me as “Cautious Kel,” and I am an overprotective mother. So I guess you could say that my only rebellion in life is rock music. Of course it is a safe way to rebel, for I am Cautious Kel.
I got to be my alter ego, the Rock Rebel, last night. Yesterday my husband’s aunt and I traveled 3 ½ hours to go to a rock concert. My first concert road trip! We had a great visit with relatives first, then set out to our music destination with two other cousins.
The original lineup was Avenged Sevenfold, Buckcherry, Shinedown, and Saving Abel. Avenged Sevenfold is one of my favorite groups right now. Unfortunately their fall tour was cancelled due to the singer’s voice strain. I was disappointed they would not be performing, but knew that Buckcherry and Shinedown would bring it.
The four of us arrived as Saving Abel was finishing their set with their hit, “Addicted.” Our seats were on the right side of the stage. We noticed the general admission area in front of the stage was not full. We traded in our seat tickets for general admission tickets at the box office (thanks to the resourcefulness of Aunt Beth). We like to see the bands close up and personal!
Shinedown was on next. They have some good hits like “Save Me” and “Devour.” It was fun to see them live, but we were more excited about the next band, Buckcherry. If you aren’t familiar with Buckcherry, their current hits include “Sorry,” “Too Drunk,” and “Crazy B*@tch.” Josh Todd, the singer, is covered in colorful tattoos, and is quite vulgar in his songs and conversations to the audience. This man can put on an awesome show!
We were pretty close to the stage, in the mix with lots of teens, a few pushy guys, and near an old guy who decided to relieve himself right there on the floor. (No, I’m not kidding!) Despite the more pushy crowd than we are used to, we thoroughly enjoyed Buckcherry’s set that ended with a ten minute rendition of “Crazy B*@tch.” After much dancing, singing at the top of our lungs, and throwing out the devil horns in time to the music, the four crazy b’s swung through Steak and Shake for some yummy shakes and a Diet Coke. We ended the night with great conversation with another cousin who was still up nursing her newborn and gave us a place to stay for the night.
Ahhhhh, good family fun.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Paint It Black

Fall is fast approaching and so are fall fashion trends. Last night I decided to follow a hot fashion trend that I read in my trusty Us Weekly. Dark fingernails are back in style. On the runways, models are sashaying with nails of dark metallics. Shades of bronze, crimson, steely silver and glimmering black are what to wear this season. So I did as any glamazon would, I painted my fingernails black.
I have to admit, I spend most days in loungewear and rock t-shirts (I am a stay at home mom for Pete’s sake!). But I do love to get dressed up and try something different every once in a while. It’s not a smooth, smudge-free job. I don’t have time nor the funds for regular mani-pedi’s. But I have to say it is striking and definitely different. My daughter does not think it is girly enough. My oldest son secretly thinks it’s cool. I wonder what the other moms at preschool will think when I pick up my youngest son today…
So, a note to the observing public…When you see a woman with black fingernails, do not automatically think that she is a goth chick or is trying out her Halloween look a month early. It is probably a fashion forward mother of three who sometimes pays attention to her fashion mags…..oh, and she also is attending a rock concert tonight!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Here I Am!

Well, I did it! I created my own place to blog! Thanks for checking into the premiere entry of Kelly’s Blogland! It took much more time, I’m sure, than needed to create this space – all freaking afternoon! I plan to blog about three to four times a week. So, please check in periodically to see what I’m up to! (Okay, I’m 5 foot 8 inches, but you must want to know other things than that about me!) I plan to blog about my favorite subject-my family, my favorite hobby-music, and of course, my favorite creative outlet- my writing for children.
Let's rock this blogspot, people!