The Mind Wobbles

So many things to absorb, think about, deal with and put up with - it simply makes the mind wobble...

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Lola Shuffle - The "I'm On Vacation and Don't Know What Day It Is/New Year's Eve" Edition

Yes, yes, I know Lola usually shuffles on Fridays and today is Wednesday - but Friday was all about Goose and such and on Friday I didn't realize it was Friday because I'm on vacation and don't much care what day it is AND I've been on a steady diet of cold medication (btw Lunesta and Nyquil are a lovely sleeping aid - just in case you needed to know that), hard cider and wine - that'll mess you up a bit! Apparenty it also contributes to extremely long sentences - whatever...:)

Anyhoo - I was in a blustery snow flurry today and freaked out a little bit because I'm from Miami and we don't do that. It's really cold today - the weather has been quite bi-polar 60 to 24 within a day - I mean come on!

So...the in-laws are going to a New Year's Eve party tonight so "the kids" (that would be my soon to be 40 year old husband and 45 year old me) are having a party - WOO HOO!

In honor of New Year's Eve Lola wanted to offer an end-of-the-year shuffle...and awaaaay we go...

  1. You're My Best Friend - Queen
  2. Easy - Lionel Richie
  3. De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da - The Police
  4. Heaven - Los Lonely Boys
  5. Boat Drnks - Jimmy Buffett (perfect - apparently Lola is cold too!)
  6. Wake Me Up When September Ends - Green Day
  7. Tabu - Desi Arnaz (synchronicity: as I type this I hear Desi Arnaz talking - my MIL is watching "I Love Lucy")
  8. Let It Be - The Beatles (Indeed! A great song on which to reflect on New Year's Eve.)
  9. Swingtown - Steve Miller Band
  10. Objects in the Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are - Meatloaf (ya gotta love him!)

Have a safe and happy New Year's Eve and a wonderful 2009!

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Friday, December 26, 2008

The Magnificent Beast! aka The Christmas Goose

Look at it! Look how pretty! It's a goose! My sister-in-law Cristi (she lives in Texas with hubby's brother and my adorable niece) was head chef for this year's Christmas dinner and I served as sous chef. I actually peeled potatoes. Don't start with me people (that means you Cris!) - I did TOO peel potatoes - look:

In addition to the goose we had a pear and Stilton cheese appetizer; grilled filet; wild rice, cranberry and sage sausage dressing; pear hard cider gravy; brussels sprouts with caramelized balsamic onions; rutabaga-potato mash; and green beans - served with a nice Malbec wine. For dessert we had "figgy" pudding, pumpkin pie and cranberry-pear tarts followed by mulled apple cider - brandy optional.

Neither of us had ever eaten, let alone made goose, so it was a combination of various recipes and Cristi's phenomenal culinary instinct. It was delicious - similar in taste and texture to duck, but with a stronger, gamier taste. I liked everything! The fig pudding - actually called Christmas pudding was intense with a little going a long way, but I'll have more later.

Look at the pear-Stilton appetizer, the dressing and the Christmas (fig) pudding:

Neat huh?

This is part of the family at the dinner table:

We ate a lot and laughed a lot - I hope your Christmas was as wonderful as ours.

The weather has improved it's in the 40s today and will go as high as low 60s in the next couple of days. I'm managing to keep the cold from hell somewhat under control, it got kinda hairy on Christmas Eve, but I'm feeling better now. We've mostly been hanging at the house with friends and family, playing games, watching TV, talking and laughing - lots of laughing! The next big event will be my other sister-in-law's (Hubby's sister) bridal shower - fun!

I'll post again when the muse the meantime make merry!

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Monday, December 22, 2008

We're Here!

After a three day road trip we have arrived at our destination. Warminster Pennsylvania - finally! It is frickin' frackin' freezing! 24 degrees - WTH?

Thus far I have:
  • managed to lose my Hardee's virginity. I had never had Hardee's hamburgers before - now I have - they were great!
  • yet to get a reasonable Internet connection on my laptop (I'm using my MIL's computer for this post because I knew you were all waiting with baited breath to hear about my life...)
  • managed to catch a cold out of nowhere
  • had a phenomenal dinner of chicken Florentine on a bed of Parmesan risotto in the most unexpected place ever
  • eaten a lot of stuff I'm totally not supposed to eat
  • listened to way too many Christmas carols on the car radio as we travelled up the east coast
  • had a chocolate coke at Sonics (yay!)
  • had yummy Waffle House coffee
  • already had my first (of several) Philly Cheesesteak of the trip - Whiz wit

So anyway...more later. Tuesday I have to buy the wine and apple cider for the Great Goose Extravaganza a.k.a. Christmas dinner, as well as wrap presents like a crazy person.

Before I start, however, I hope to have breakfast at a funky little diner nearby called "Little Leo's" where they have awesome coffee and the best scrapple ever!


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Friday, December 19, 2008

The Lola Shuffle - The Christmas Edition

(image source)'s that time...Lola's doing the Christmas Shuffle! Let's see if she'll be naughty or nice...

  1. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Judy Garland (oh, that velvet)
  2. Santa Claus is Coming to Town - Bing Crosby and The Andrew Sisters (quite the swinging version)
  3. O Holy Night! - Faith Hill (I'm not her biggest fan, but this is my favorite carol and she sings it beautifully)
  4. Santa Baby - Taylor Swift (with all due props to Eartha Kitt who will forever *own* this song, this is a really cute version)
  5. Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree - Brenda Lee (Often imitated, never duplicated. By far the best version!)
  6. Walkin' In a Winter Wonderland - Michael Bolton (Don't judge me people! It was part of a Christmas collection CD)
  7. Last Christmas a.k.a. The Song That Shall Not Be Named - Taylor Swift (Seriously Dixie - it's not my fault Lola did it! But I really think you should check this version out. It makes sense for a teenager, they fall in and out of love a million times in a year! It doesn't have the ewwww factor that other version does. Really.)
  8. White Christmas - Bing Crosby (Yeah, yeah, classic...blah, blah, blah. Since this year I'm looking at the very real prospect of actually *having* a white Christmas the whole thing sounds way less charming.)
  9. The Christmas Waltz - Harry Connick Jr. (great song)
  10. The Christmas Song - The Osmond Brothers (What? Yeah - I have the Osmonds in wanna make something of it? It just so happens this is by the all-grown up Osmonds! Whattaya mean that's even dorkier? Why I oughta...)

I hope by next week's Lola Shuffle (expected to be coming to you from the frozen tundra also known as Pennsylvania) everyone has enjoyed a safe and wonderful holiday full of love and family and presents and yummy food.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

You Know You've Been Raised By Cuban Parents when...

(From an e-mail message I received today)

You smelled like "Agustin Reyes Royal Violets" (violet cologne) as a baby.

You had to wait at least 30 minutes to get into the water after eating to avoid a stroke.

They made a cross on your skin with their finger nails when you got a mosquito bite.

You always had prescription drugs in the house, yet no one ever visited the doctor - it was usually Tetracycline.

Your mom or grandma made you a "cocimiento de manzanilla" (chamomille tea) to make you feel better when you had stomach problems.

You had a least two fruit trees planted in the backyard. One of them was usually a mango tree.

You went to La Carreta, or Sergio's, or the grand daddy of all Cuban restaurants, Versailles, after a "special" event like someone's communion.

You had at least 2 trays of "Bocaditos de Pasta" at your birthday party.

You have someone in the family who you introduce as your "cousin," but he/she is not a blood relative.

And the amazing "heat-seeking CHANCLETAS" (flip flops - sort of).


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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

'Toon Tuesday


Friday, December 12, 2008

The Lola Shuffle - The "I'm So Ready for Vacation Now" Edition

Yep...the annual pilgrimage to the frozen tundra otherwise known as Pennsylvania is coming up - I only have a week to go. I am so ready for the road trip, seeing the kids and spending time with the in-laws. One of my sisters-in-law and I are planning to make a Christmas Goose and go all Dickensian on their azzes!

In any case, I'd much rather be looking for wild rice dressing recipes than working - DUH!

Anyway - g'ahead Lola shuffle up a good one...

  1. I Need to Know - Marc Anthony
  2. LDN - Lily Allen
  3. When We Dance - Sting
  4. It's Oh So Quiet - Björk
  5. Another One Bites the Dust - Queen
  6. Fast Car - Tracy Chapman
  7. I Put a Spell On You - Nina Simone
  8. Tell Her About It - Billy Joel
  9. Put Your Lights On - Santana featuring Everlast
  10. Just in Time - Tony Bennett
Have a great weekend everybody! I'm all done with my shopping - hopefully so are you. TTFN...


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Say Thanks to Our Troops

You can go here and send a holiday greeting to our troops. It's a free and easy way to let them know that regardless of our opinion of the war, we support them.

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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

'Toon Tuesday

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Friday, December 5, 2008

The Lola Shuffle - The "We Just Decked The Office Halls" Edition

It was time to decorate the office and put up the tree - and yes, there was fluffing involved! It was fun, we had a snack pot-luck with lots of yummy bad for me stuff. A good time was had by all.

Lola isn't ready to shuffle Christmas music just yet, so let's see with what Miss Thing comes up...

  1. Don't Fence Me In - Bing Crosby
  2. Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes - Paul Simon
  3. Every Morning - Sugar Ray
  4. May Your Music Live On - Terrance Simien
  5. Bachata Rosa - Juan Luis Guerra
  6. Promiscuous - Nelly Furtado & Timbaland
  7. Till Then - The Mills Brothers
  8. Easy - Lionel Richie
  9. La La La (If I Had You) - Bobby Sherman (Don't you laugh at me people!)
  10. Welcome to Paradise - Green Day

Have a great weekend and try to keep the pre-holiday madness to a minimum!


Thursday, December 4, 2008

Book Comment - "For Whom the Bell Tolls" by Ernest Hemingway

This is a "comment" not a review because I didn't finish the book.'s over. I stopped reading "For Whom the Bell Tolls" - at least for now.

It wasn't working for me.

In the book, which takes place during the Spanish Civil War, Hemingway adopted the affectation of writing in a style that was supposed to be a direct translation of old-fashioned Castillian Spanish. I found it annoying as hell! The pacing was also too slow for me - particularly right now when I'm on over-drive.

I didn't identify or care about any of the characters - not even enough to dislike them. I was indifferent to all of them. The story has great potential IMO but I wasn't feeling it.

A couple of years ago I adopted the 50 page rule - if a book doesn't grab me by page 50 I move on.

I made it to page 65.

Sorry Papa.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

'Toon Tuesday on Wednesday!

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Monday, December 1, 2008

Wolrd AIDS Day 2008

World AIDS Day 2008

The theme for World AIDS Day 2007 and 2008 is “leadership”. This
theme will continue to be promoted with the campaigning slogan, “Stop AIDS. Keep the Promise.” Leadership was selected as the theme for World AIDS Day to encourage leaders at all levels to stop AIDS. Building on the 2006 theme of accountability, leadership highlights the discrepancy between the commitments that have been made to halt the spread of AIDS, and actions taken to follow them through. The theme empowers everyone from individuals to organisations to governments to lead in the response to AIDS.

It's the 20th anniversary of World AIDS day. So much has been accomplished, yet so much still needs to be done.

Think about the world in 1988, think about our perception of AIDS - a gay man's absolute death can get it from kissing or touching or hugging someone with long as you have heterosexual sex, you don't have to worry...women won't get it...nothing can be done about it. Thankfully, look how far we've come.

Then think about the famous faces of AIDS and HIV through the years. There are those who didn't make it: Elizabeth Glaser, Rock Hudson, Freddy Mercury, Ryan White, Arthur Ashe, Hector Lavoe. And there are those who are living with HIV/AIDS: Magic Johnson , Greg Louganis, Andy Bell.

And then think of those - in both categories - that we know personally.

And now think about the millions of people throughout the world, particularly in Africa, who due to lack of information are still contracting and dying of AIDS.

In short, just think about HIV/AIDS and about those who are living with it. And also, pray that a cure will soon be found and be made available to all, so that like so many other epidemics, this too will be relegated as a sad chapter in the history of humanity.

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