This is my life. Enjoy!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Kayaking with Alligators...

I decided to take most of this past week off to head down to the beach.  (Of course, the dogs got excited when they saw me grab the travel crate...well, except for Hope.)  While out on one of my early morning walks/jogs, I walked past a shop that sells diving equipment and does diving tours.  I had always known it was there but never really paid the shop any attention.  This time I did.  I noticed they also had some kayaks outside by a canal that opened up into the lagoons.  This got me excited!  Lately, I have been feeling daring, or more spontaneous, or perhaps more adventurous.  I don't really know what I have been feeling.  (It must be the multivitamin that I have started to take...).  When I got back to the condo, I looked up their number and told them that I would be there in 1.5 hours!
I get there, but had to wait because there were customers in the store and the other store associate had gone to the post office.  Finally, after an excruciating 5 or 10 minutes, I was outside picking out the kayak that I wanted to ride in.  Now mind you, I have never, ever, ever kayaked before.  Nor have I ever, ever, ever paddled a boat before.  Nor have I ever, ever, ever wanted to be in water where my feet couldn't touch the bottom.  (More specifically...I'm 6 feet tall, so I would prefer the water to not be higher than 4 feet tall...5 feet would be pushing it...).  Nor have I ever, ever, ever wanted to be in water where I couldn't see straight down to the bottom so I could make sure nothing was going to bite me or that I was going to step on something.   
I ask the guy, "Is there anything special I need to know about this?"  To which he replied, "Nope, not really."  (That was it?!?!  He wasn't going to tell me the do's and don'ts?  Or, if you do this you will die?!?!  None of that?) I then asked, "Ummm...what if I fall out?"  He said, "You better hope like Hell you can get back in the kayak before a gator gets you."  (My sunburnt skin turned pale white.)  He continued, "If you fall in and make a big splash, a gator is gonna wanna investigate.  Especially if it's a momma gator."  My next question was, "And just how deep is the water?"  He replied, "It's mostly less than 3 or 4 feet deep; however, there are holes out there that are 6 feet deep."  I turned away from him and had a conversation in my head... "Well, the good news is that I can handle the water depth.  However, the bad news is the water depth is too shallow.  If I do fall out, yes, I can just stand up and get back in the kayak easily.  However, this means that the gators are NOT far, far, far down in the water.  Nope.  They are right there under my kayak.  They can bite the kayak bottom, and I will fall out.  Or, they can easily grab my paddle, yank, and there I will be staring eye to eye with a gator.  Oh my my my.  It's all good.  If the water is shallow then I should be able to see an alligator well in advance and try to get away from him.  That's a good question..."  I turn back to the guy and ask, "What do I do if I see an alligator?"  He dryly said, "You will find out who is faster...a guy in a kayak or an alligator."  I nervously laughed.  He continued, "Honestly, if you see one, get away from him but don't do it in a hysterical way which will make the alligator want to investigate you...or maybe it would scare him away...your call." 
And with that, I was off.  No cellphone (I didn't want it to get water damaged because I knew I would fall out of the kayak since I have never done it before), no GPS unit to find my way around the lagoon or better yet to find my way back, no flare gun to catch people's attention if I needed help...nothing.  I start paddling and sure enough, the water wasn't deep.  I kept looking at the murky water and wondering if there was a gator close by.  I also kept sticking my paddle in the water to see how deep it was.  I didn't see any alligators on my trip, but I did see where they liked to travel in the marsh land.  (You can see the tall grass laid over from where they keep walking over it.)  Surprisingly, I didn't even see a snake.  Thank God!  I just knew a snake was going to get inside the kayak because there were 4 good sized holes in the bottom to allow for water drainage.  
A snake never popped his head up into of the kayak's holes, nor did I ever see an alligator, nor did I ever fall out of the kayak.  I did get to see a lot of murky water and a lot of birds.  I had a ton of fun.  I think I will be back to rent another kayak the next time I'm down long as I keep taking that multivitamin.  You Live, You Learn.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Foto Friday




Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dr. Feel

This morning Dr. Feel got his fishbowl cleaned out. He is now happy again!

You Live, You Learn

Monday, April 20, 2009

Random Memory...

I had to go to the Post Office yesterday and when I pulled up I had a "Random Flashback Blonde Moment Memory".......................

I was rushing trying to get into the Post Office because I had a lot of bills and "thinking of you" cards to mail off.  I finally made it through the extremely long and boring line.  Through the "Do you need a book of stamps to go along with that?" And the, "Anything hazard, liquid, or dangerous?"  I had survived all of that and was at the front of the line.  After purchasing my stamps, I walked to the other side of the Post Office were a table stood so I could lick my stamps in peace.  After all my bills and cards were dressed for the road trip, I gathered them all up and walked over to the slits in the wall where you drop your mail in and hope there is a basket there to catch it on the other side.  That is when I noticed something was different and became confused.
The slits on the wall used to read: "In town" "Out of Town" "Large envelopes" "Packages." However, now they just read: "Letters" or "Packages."  This is when my Blonde Moment kicked in.  I wasn't confused by the fact that now all you had to do was stuff your letters in the slits and the Post Office workers would sort out the mail for you into "in town" and "out of town" piles.  No, that did not confuse me.  (I had always wondered what would happen if you put an "out of town" letter in the "in town" slit...) What confused me was the fact that I didn't have any "letters" or "packages" to mail off...I had "bills" and "thinking of you cards."  Where did they go?  Where were the slits for those?  Don't they know that people mail off other things besides "letters" and "packages?"
I continued to stand there wondering where to put my mail.  I searched through my mail again to make sure I didn't have anything that was considered a "letter" or "package." I thought to myself, "Perhaps a 'thinking of you card' could be considered a 'letter'...but it's a 'card'...not a 'letter'."  I started getting extremely nervous because I wanted/needed my mail to get to their destinations on time.  I didn't know what to do.  If I put my mail in the wrong place it might not get there.  And, I didn't want the Post Office workers to think that I was an idiot by putting my mail in the wrong slit.  (They would know who did it by looking at the return address.)  So, instead of looking like an idiot, I decided to ask my question out loud so (1) other people that were in the Post Office wouldn't be confused like me, (2) other people in the Post Office would come over and help me, and (3) the Post Office would realize there was a mistake and correct it.  
So, I voiced my question (to no particular person)... "There's not a slit for 'bills' and 'thinking of you cards.' Where do I put them?" Immediately, everyone started looking at me with confused faces.  To myself I thought, "They too have 'bills' or something other than 'letters' to mail, and they too are confused."  I continued thinking that until a lady starting laughing...really loud.  She continued laughing.  Others started smiling and smirking too.  Finally, my light bulb came on, and I realized I had lost my mind.  I quickly stuffed my "letters" into the slits, held my head high, and walked out the door...embarassed.  You Live, You Learn.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


Earlier today, Prada and Louie had encounters with dinosaurs!  It all started out very innocently by running around in the back yard chasing each other.  They were enjoying the sunshine and lite breeze.  When they got tired, they walked over to the fountain and sat beside it so a little mist would fall on them.  Louie soon got bored and walked over to the other side of the yard and sat in the shade under the bench.  Hope was sitting beside me while I read a magazine.  I looked up and happened to see a lizard on the tree beside Prada.  It is always in that tree and scares me every time I walk past to get to the water hose.  I don't think he is being aggressive towards me...  I think he is just curious of me.  (And possibly hyper because he is always on the move.)
He was on the move again today trying to climb to the edge of a branch when he fell to the ground...right beside Prada.  She stared at T-Rex (aka the lizard). He stared back. He moved to the left.  She moved to the left.  He moved to the right.  She ran! ... toward me.  She looked back, stuck her nose in the air, and stiffed towards her attacker.  She s-l-o-w-l-y walked back to the scene of the attack.  T-Rex was still there...she moves a little closer.  This scared him, so he jumped up on the tree.  She began barking which sent T-Rex up the tree to blend in with the leaves.  Although she had won the fight, she immediately came running back to me for me to pick her up.  
After things settled down, I happened to see something out of the corner of my eye...2 pigeons sitting on the fence.  They flew over to the bird feeder, but realized that it was empty.  So, they hopped down to the ground to see if other birds had dropped some seeds.  After eating the left-over seeds, they began to wobble around looking for more.  They start walking over to the bench which Louie was still under.  He had fallen asleep and didn't know that pterodactyls (he's so small, so they seem so big) were closing in on him.  When they get right up on him, he wakes up...jumps...barks...and high-tails it over to me.  All of this movement sent the birds flying back to the fence.  He s-l-o-w-l-y walks to the fence where they are.  Looks at them.  And then barks.  When they didn't move, he started barking louder.  Finally, after no movement from the pterodactyls, he considered them a "no threat" but ran to the back door wanting to get inside.  According to Louie and Prada, dinosaurs live in the backyard.  You Live, You Learn.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Foto Friday...

Prada & Me

You Live, You Learn

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Well, I was back in the kitchen again  Well, I guess not cooking because I didn't have to get a pot/pan out.  I didn't even have to turn on the stove or oven.  I guess I didn't really didn't cook anything....I mixed something.  haha.  (To me, that's a form of cooking...)  I have been in the mood for some fresh lemonade the way my mother used to make it when I was growing up.  I thought that I could remember how to make it from my memory of watching her.  I think I succeeded!!!  It isn't totally ready yet, but it's already good.  
To make "Three Dogs & a Fish's World Famous Better Than You Ever Had Fresh Lemonade" all you need is:
  • Pitcher 
  • Water
  • Lemons (4-7---depends on how big your pitcher is)
  • Sugar or a sugar substitute
  1. Fill pitcher 3/4 full with water
  2. Add sugar to desired sweetness (I have a BIG pitcher.  So, I used 1 1/2 cups of Splenda...we shall see if that is too sweet...)
  3. Cut the ends off of the lemons (put these to the side)
  4. Slice your lemons into whatever thickness you like and add them to your pitcher
  5. Stir lightly
  6. Add more water to fill up the pitcher
  7. Stir lightly again
  8. Refrigerate overnight 
  9. Take the ends of the lemons that you cut off in Step 3 and throw them in the garbage disposal, turn on, result...clean garbage disposal
I do remember that you are NOT suppose to squeeze a lemon into the lemonade because this will result in SOUR tasting lemonade.  That is also why you "Stir Lightly."  (Look at me writing a recipe! haha.)

If you have a recipe for lemonade, let me know!  You Live, You Learn.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Hope aka VISA...

Hope is becoming more and more like VISA..."Everywhere you want to be..."  First, she blends into the tile throughout the kitchen, office, laundry room, and bathrooms.  Her fur has the same marble texture of creams and tans just like the tile.  This leads to tripping over her.  Especially, when you are busy in the kitchen (not cooking haha) and need to turn around real quick...trip..."Sorry Hope."  A few seconds later...trip..."Sorry Hope."  Second, she has gotten more and more quite or perhaps sneaky.  She LOVES to sneak up on you now, so when you turn around you don't know she is there AND she blends into the floor.  Trip..."Sorry Hope."  Third, her eyesight in her left eye is completely gone.  So, she can't see you to try to get out of your way nor can she even tell if you are standing beside her if you are on her left side.  So, what happens?  She sneaks up on you AND she blends into the floor AND she can't see you to try to get out of your way because of her bad left-eye sight.  Trip... "Sorry Hope."
I feel horrible for always tripping over her.  It's not a new occurrence, like I said she has been blending into the tile for a while now.  But, since she is aging more and more, I feel bad for tripping over her.  (I felt bad before, but even more now.)  I suppose I need to buy a bell and attach it to her collar.  The bell may get on my nerves and Prada's and Louie's, but I know it won't get on her's since she won't be able to hear it.  Maybe a bell is a good thing.  It won't aggravate her because she won't be able to hear it, so she won't even know she is wearing one.  But, it will definitely help me out and her!  You Live, You Learn.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Foto Friday...


You Live, You Learn

Thursday, April 9, 2009

New Uses for Everyday Things...(part 2)

Here is my final list of my favorite things from "101 New Uses for Everyday Things" by Real Simple.

  • Diffuse the flash on a camera.  When you're taking a close-up, soften the brightness by placing a coffee filter over the flash.
  • Prevent soil from draining out of flowerpots.  When repotting, place a filter at the bottom, over the drainage hole, then add the soil.
  • Prevent scuffs and scratches on fine china.  Use flattened coffee filters as spacers when you stack your dishes.
  • Strain wine from a bottle with a broken cork.  Place the filter over a pitcher or a carafe and slowly pour the wine into it.
  • Pinch-hit for lemon in a savory recipe. Use 1/2 teaspoon of vinegar in place of 1 teaspoon of lemon juice.
  • Clean a dishwasher.  Once a month, with the machine empty, run a cup of vinegar through an entire cycle to reduce soap buildup on the inner mechanisms and glassware.
  • Remove stubborn price tags or stickers.  Paint them with several coats of vinegar, let the liquid soak in for 5 minutes, then wipe away the residue.
  • Kill weeds between cracks in paving stones/sidewalks.  Fill a spray bottle with straight vinegar and spray multiple times. (Be careful not to get any of the surrounding grass, as it will kill that too.)
  • Exfoliate skin.  Wash your face, then apply a soft paste made of 3 parts baking soda and 1 part water.  Massage gently with a circular motion, avoiding the eye area; rinse clean.
  • Unclog a drain.  Pour 1/2 to 1 cup of baking soda down the drain, then slowly pour 1/2 to 1 cup of white vinegar after it.  Let sit for 5 minutes (covered, if possible).  Follow with a gallon of boiling water.
  • Scrub pans.  Sprinkle soda on crusted casseroles and roasting pans and let sit for 5 minutes.  Lightly scrub and rinse.
  • Settle a stomach during occasional indigestion.  Stir 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda into 1/2 cup of water and drink for a safe/effective antacid.  
  • Prevent frost from accumulating inside car windows. Rub the glass with a solution of 2 teaspoons of salt in 1 gallon of hot water.  Wipe dry.
  • Remove dirt from leafy vegetables, such as spinach.  Wash the vegetables in a bath of salt water.
  • Clean drains.  Pour a hot, strong solution (1/2 cup salt for every quart of water) down the drain.
  • Eliminate sticky residue from an iron.  Run the hot iron (no steam) over plain paper sprinkled with salt.
Hope you enjoyed this little series of "New Uses for Everyday Things" from Real Simple.  You Live, You Learn.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

New Uses for Everyday Things...

I received an E-mail from Real Simple (LOVE this magazine) containing "101 New Uses for Everyday Things."  Here are my favorites in each catagory.  

  • Remove tough food stains from plastic and light-colored wooden cutting boards.  Slice a lemon in half, squeeze the juice onto the soiled surface, rub, and let sit for 20 minutes.  Rinse with water.
  • Relieve a sore throat.  Cut a lemon in half.  Skewer 1/2 over a medium flame (stove) and roast until the peel turns golden brown.  Let cool slightly, then mix the juice with 1 teaspoon of honey.  Swallow the mixture.
  • Whiten fingernails.  Rub a wedge on the surface of your nails.
  • Brighten laundry whites.  And 1/2 cup lemon juice to the wash cyctle of a normal-sized load.
  • Deodorize food containers.  Stuff a balled-up piece of newspaper into a lunch box/thermos, seal it, and let sit overnight.
  • Ripen tomatoes.  Wrap them individually and leave them out at room temperature.
  • Dry shoes.  Place crumpled paper in them overnight.
  • Keep the refrigerator veggie drawer dry/free of smells.  Line the bottom with newspaper.
  • Shave.  Olive oil can provide a closer shave when used in place of shaving cream.
  • Moisturize cuticles.  Apply a small amount of olive oil to the nail beds.
  • Treat dry skin.  Rub a thin layer over the skin after a shower or a waxing.
  • Dust wooden furniture.  Apply a bit of oil to a cloth and wipe.
  • Freshen smelly shoes.  Insert a dryer sheet into the offending pair and let sit overnight.
  • Clean pet hair from the floor/furniture.  Rub a dryer sheet over the spot where Fluffy left her fur.
  • Loosen-caked-on food from a pan.  Place a fresh sheet in the bottom of a dirty pan, fill with lukewarm tap water, and let sit in the sink overnight.  The pan will be easier to clean in the morning.
  • Tackle suitcase/gym-bag odors.  Place a dryer sheet in your suitcase/gym bag so your clean clothes won't take on the odors of the dirty ones.
Tomorrow I will post "New Uses for"... Coffee Filters, Vinegar, Baking Soda, and Salt!  You Live, You Learn.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


You Live, You Learn

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Fruit and Veggies...

Strawberries:  So far, everything seems to be going well.  I haven't had any to die on me (yet).  I have one nice sized strawberry!  (It was already on the plant with I bought them, but it has turned pink/red.) Just a few more and I can make a strawberry margarita.  Haha.  There are a few baby strawberries growing too.  Hopefully, by the end of the month, I will have more (I don't know how long it takes for them to grow...).  I am concerned though.  Strawberries are going to weigh a lot and that will weigh my plants down too.  Right?  So, will my strawberries actually act like one of those Topsy Turvy Tomato planters?  I guess I will find out soon enough. 
Lettuce: I planted some seeds and they have sprouted up!  Look at me, I'm becoming a horticulturist.  Haha.  I have never seen lettuce growing (or strawberries) and they are funny.  They kinda look like a mix between weeds, clovers, or funny grass.  According to the seed pack, I'm suppose to thin them out, but I'm gonna wait a couple more days before doing that.  I do hope I can keep the lettuce alive.  I love salads, and I think it will be cool to eat lettuce that I grew!  (I also love cheese...should I buy a cow?...nah.)
Tomatoes: I don't eat tomatoes, but I am growing a couple.  Go figure.  Although, I don't
like tomatoes... I LOVE salsa!  (I know, I know, it's the same thing, but it's not.)  I don't like 
chunky salsa at all.  I prefer mine pureed.  (Look at me using cooking language.)  So, I have 
decided to try to make my own salsa.  I don't know exactly how this is going to turn out, but 
we shall see.  If you know of a good recipe for pureed salsa (aka not chunky), send them to 
me!  I guess I don't need them right now, but maybe in a few weeks I will.  I'm also growing my 
tomatoes in a Topsy Turvy Container.  I think I just like the name Topsy Turvy.  
You Live, You Learn

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


On Monday, I got home and since it was still daylight outside I decided to go for a walk.  I started getting Prada's and Louie's harnesses and leashes out, but for some reason I had second thoughts.  I didn't know why, but I felt that maybe they shouldn't accompany on this relaxing walk.  So, I put their stuff back in the cabinet. (Prada seemed thrilled of my change of heart.  The torture...oh the torture of a walk.)  I stuck my earphones in my ears, turned on the music, and headed out the door.  
I walked maybe 6 blocks, jamming out to my music, looking at the houses, and wondering why there wasn't anyone else out in the neighborhood...when it happened.  (A "small" dosage of what was waiting for me later).  All of a sudden, I felt something jump on my leg, grab my shorts, and shake/yank.  I screamed like a little girl!  I didn't know what had gotten a hold of me. (While I was jamming out and aimlessly looking at houses, a little dog has his/her eye on me.) 
Luckily, I had come in contact with him/her before, and just said "Hello."  Meanwhile, the dog's owner (a lady in the neighborhood that walks her dog late in the evening with a wine glass FULL of red wine...makes sense to me; wine is suppose to be good for you and so is exercise, so why not combine them) came running up to me saying "Come here. Come here.  No. No. No! NO! Get down.  Be nice!"  She then apologized saying that the little rascal had just gotten away from her.  I told her that it was not a problem and it didn't scare me at all.  (Yeah right...)
I continued on my relaxing walk which brought me back to my house but decided to keep going.  I walked 2 more blocks, jamming out to music, looking down at the sidewalk, and remembering my little incident that had just occurred...when IT happened.  For some reason, I looked up and half a block away were 1 small black poodle, 1 small white poodle, and 1 huge black poodle (that had to be mixed with a St. Bernard) running full speed ahead for me.  
I immediately thought of Jurassic Park where the characters come in contact with T-Rex and just freeze because T-Rex can only see movement.  So, I decided to freeze and not move...hoping that they wouldn't be able to see me.  (And, also wishing I had worn camouflage so I could blend in more.)  The little black one arrived first and just starting jumping up on my legs.  Smiling at me.  Barking at me.  Then, the little white one arrived and copied the other dog.  As the St. Bernard Poodle got closer, the smaller ones decided to get out of his/her way.  The big one jumped up on my chest, stuck his tongue out, and tried to lick me.  Thankfully, their owner started calling them, which sent them running away from me and back home.  I decided I had had enough of this relaxing walk, turned around, headed home, and thought Prada was right...torture...oh, the torture of a walk.  You Live, You Learn.