11/17/11 – Thursday

My new computer will be here later today. Thank god, because while I’ve never had any problems using my netbook to post entries while I’m on vacation, using it here at my desk is working my last nerve. The screen is just so TINY! So I’m going to put up a post here (obviously), but … Continue reading “11/17/11 – Thursday”

My new computer will be here later today. Thank god, because while I’ve never had any problems using my netbook to post entries while I’m on vacation, using it here at my desk is working my last nerve. The screen is just so TINY!

So I’m going to put up a post here (obviously), but I’m taking tomorrow off so that I can get my new computer up and running over the weekend and hopefully get back to normal posting on Monday.

PS: My Kindle Fire was waiting for me when I got home last night! I haven’t had the time (or rather, I should say I haven’t taken the time) to do anything other than plug it in to charge. That’s another thing I want to do over the weekend!

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My Life on the A* List.
*Or possibly the Z List. Or no List at all. Shush.

A month or so ago, Nance sent me an email with a link to this Knock Out Cancer event where Teresa Giudice (she is a Real Housewife of NJ, for those of you who don’t watch the more intellectual reality shows) was going to be appearing. Shirley’s 71st birthday was coming up, and Nance wanted to give her tickets to it, and she also wanted me to come up and go with them.

Since I haven’t been to Pennsylvania in over a year, I jumped on that immediately, and I probably had my tickets bought about 30 seconds after I got the email (okay, that’s a slight exaggeration, but only a slight one). I told Nance I couldn’t come up for long – just a couple of days – but that I’d definitely be there. I figured we’d stroll around the mall, people-watch, and perhaps catch a glimpse of Teresa.


Unbeknownst to me, Nance hadn’t got the plain old tickets – she got the VIP tickets for Shirley and I both, which meant we were going to MEET Teresa, up close and in person.

(Nance herself, though, had NO desire to meet Teresa. She was happy to admire her from a distance and see the pictures!)

Nance told me she had a surprise for me the night I arrived, and after they picked me up from the airport, she told me we were going to have an Italian meal consisting exclusively of recipes from Teresa’s cookbooks, Skinny Italian and Fabulicious. We had Cavatelli, some terribly delicious sauce I can never remember the name of, Bruschetta, and the most fabulous olive oil dipping sauce. The Fabellini isn’t out yet, so we had a Raspberry Sparkletini substitute. It was my first alcohol in like six years, and one glass (5% alcohol!!!) was enough to make me slightly buzzed and make my lips numb. (When it wore off, I had a second glass! And in fact, had some in orange juice the next morning. I have to admit, I’ve never ever liked wine, but that stuff was pretty good. Not that I’ll go rushing out to buy it, but if there was some around, I’d probably have some every now and then.)

My favorite part of the meal (here’s a shocker) was dessert, which was (were?) Holy Cannoli cupcakes – and they were SO good. I’m really not much of a fan of cannoli, but these cupcakes were really really good, and I plan to make them myself soon so that Fred can give them a try.

We also tried BLK Water, and I have to say: that stuff was NASTY. At first it tasted like stale water, and then there was a metallic aftertaste. DO NOT recommend.

Felina and the netbook sharing space on my lap. I’m biting my nails and listening to Nance. I spend way too much time touching my face, I’ve decided.

We were up super late (I honestly don’t think that I went to bed before 1:30 the entire time I was there – and considering that I’m usually conked out by 10, that was seriously late for me!) and then the next morning after we all finally got up, we had a fabulous brunch (waffles, eggs, bacon, fried taters, and ORANGE WEDGES (Shirley!))

Then it was time to get ready, and Nance tried to show me how to pose like a Real Housewife, but I perhaps don’t have that particular skill down just yet.

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Ya don’t really see them staring at the ceiling all that much, do you? Perhaps that should be my signature pose.

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Check out that big wad of gum. Klassy, I am.

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Far too amused by myself.

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Seriously cracking myself up.

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Nance in the mirror.

Nance does animal hair patrol on Shirley.

When we were ready, we headed out. Due to some miscommunication, we arrived really early, and settled down in Starbucks to watch the registration desk whilst sipping Starbucks drinks.

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The instant we saw someone check in at the registration desk, we were over there like a shot to check in ourselves. We handed over our tickets, Shirley and I got our VIP passes, and then we walked down the mall and were told to wait in front of Larrimor’s. We were the first VIPs to show up, and we kept looking into the store, figuring they had her hidden in the back somewhere.

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Eventually more VIPs showed up, and we waited and waited. And waited.

(Teresa Guidice is known for being late, so to have expected her to be there exactly at 6 was maybe dumb on our part.)

They finally let us into the store and pointed us toward some food and said she was on her way. We chit-chatted with the other VIPs (who were all very nice, and a couple of them were REALLY funny). After I don’t know how long, maybe half an hour, during which we were getting updates from the store manager (she was driving rather than flying, she had to be back in New York the next day, Juicy Joe was with her (which turned out not to be true)), all of a sudden the atmosphere in the store changed.

Teresa walked in, greeted us all, and started talking to and posing for pictures with whoever approached her. Though Shirley and I had been at the very front of the line, we were at the back of the store when she walked in (we weren’t sure whether she’d be coming in the front or through the back), so we were nowhere near the first to talk to her.

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When we finally got to the front of the line, I said “Hi! I came from Alabama to meet you!”, which in retrospect makes me sound like a superfan or something, when the truth is that I would probably have flown up to meet just about anyone; flying up to attend this thing was just an excuse to hang out with Nance, really.

Anyway, I said that to Teresa and she GAVE ME A HUG, which I wasn’t expecting. Then Shirley said “Oh, I see, she gets a hug because she came from Alabama!” and Teresa hugged her, too!

We got to stand there and talk to her for longer than I would have expected, and Shirley and I had her sign our cookbooks.

Side note: we were apparently the only VIPs who’d thought to bring our own cookbooks (I didn’t actually own them until about a week before I flew to Pennsylvania; I got them through Amazon specifically to bring with me), and the other VIPs were all “Ugh! Why didn’t WE think of that!”

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Truly, I need to practice my posing-for-pictures smile in the mirror a little more.

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If you watch RHoNJ, you’ll recognize this expression. I don’t remember what she was talking about, but she was excited about it!

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I can tell you that she was really nice, and very warm. She openly answered the nosy questions that people asked (her father just got out of the hospital; he gets pneumonia a lot. She hasn’t seen Melissa since the reunion. She doesn’t talk to Kathy. She laughed when someone said they were “Team Teresa” and again when someone called Caroline “A pain in the ass.” She summed up the whole Joey/ Melissa/ Kathy thing by saying “Family is hard.”), which surprised me – but then, I’m sure she gets asked those questions a LOT. I’m sure she does a lot of personal appearances, and it’s not like I was going to tell you that someone made her mad and she flipped a table or anything, after all, you know?

It was definitely a fun experience, and I’d do it again.

After we posed for pictures and had our books signed, Shirley and I headed out to look for Nance and Rick, who were walking around the mall seeing the sights. We looked around a little, checked out a few stores, and then decided we were hungry and it was time to go.

We didn’t realize until the next day that Teresa had actually had a question and answer session later in another part of the mall. If we’d known, we would have attended. My only gripe about the whole thing is that it wasn’t quite as organized as it should have been.

But really, I have no complaints. I got to rub shoulders with a reality star (YOU KNOW YOU’RE JEALOUS), I got to hang out with friends, and I didn’t have to scoop a single litter box while I was visiting.

In my book, that adds up to an A+ vacation!

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Anarchy is reigning here at Crooked Acres. Since Fred sleeps with his bedroom door closed, when I go on vacation and there are only a few fosters present, he usually lets them have the run of the house during the night as well as during the day. He did that while I was in Pennsylvania, and when I got back I decided to let Charlie, Patty, and Everett stay out overnight and see how it went.

It went pretty well, actually. The three of them go a little crazy at bedtime, but they settle down pretty quickly, and though Everett came to visit a couple of times during the night, I slept okay. So out they’ll stay ’til they toddle off to Petsmart (whenever that is – STILL no Peppers adoptions, grrr.)

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Everett and Charlie snoozing. You can see Everett’s faint stripes.

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Chuckles, annoyed.

Everett and the white whisker.

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Charlie’s wondering why Everett gets his own bed, while Charlie and Spanky have to share.

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I like how they’re using the bed liner as a divider so they don’t (horrors!) touch.

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2010: “She doesn’t love you,” Fred would tell Coltrane sadly before he closed the door.
2009: “I wonder if that’s the Gulf of Mexico or the Gulf of China,” Fred joked as we drove by on Sunday.
2008: Fred snorted “You should just start wearing overalls!”
2007: Hey! I was decluttering last year at this time, too!
2006: Here’s Doctor Robyn’s list of diagnoses.
2005: Cat hair on the seat of your pants! It’s the Next Big Thing!
2004: Do you suppose that cats realize that when we kiss them, it’s a sign of affection?
2003: NAS-TAY.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Thanks, y’all, for your emails regarding hamster sex.
1999: So, I didn’t get the kitten.