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Friday, October 16, 2009

Are You Ready for Christmas 2009?

It's only 70 days until Christmas. Is it really that close? Seems like just yesterday it was 4th of July.

I have no idea how we're going to manage Christmas this year. My partner and I usually purchase 1 major gift for each child (or 1 shared gift) and then buy them stuff they need, like clothing, shoes, etc. We're very practical. We're also very dollar challenged this year and I'm sure we're not alone. I think this year we're going to skip the major gift and only go with the practical.

Since we have teens it's becoming increasingly difficult, not only to come up with gift ideas, but also to get the shopping done. When they were younger it was easy. They went shopping with me, and when they weren't looking I would slip items into the cart under my coat. When it was time to hit the check-out lanes, I had them stand a couple aisles over, where I could keep an eye on them and then I put my coat on and put the items on the counter and paid for them. They were too busy watching other people check-out, or they were fighting. They had no idea what I bought. I still occasionally employ this technique, but the I have to be more careful.

I try to shop early, a little at a time, so it's easier on the wallet. My Mom did the same thing when we were kids. She would wrap them early and hide them. Her favorite hiding place was the bottom drawer of her cedar chest. I figured it out early on and was very adept at peeling away the cellophane tape, opening the package, checking out the contents, and then re-wrapping it. No one was the wiser.

Unfortunately, the first year we moved to the burbs, my hiding place was a cabinet in the basement. A power outage that stopped our sump pump had me scrambling to retrieve the items before the flood water got too high. I narrowly escaped saving an Ipod and I had to leave out some DVD's to dry. They ended up being fine, but that's no longer a safe hiding place.

Today with my family I employ a tactic I call "
hiding in plain sight". I'll even do this before I wrap the items. "Hiding in plain sight" is just what it means, sort of. I've hidden gifts in the garage which I made no attempt to cover. I've hidden gifts in a plain box on a bookshelf, board games in a bag behind the sofa. Family members pass the items daily, and have no clue. Sometimes I give up my hiding places because I can't resist the "gotcha" response. Other times, I keep them secret. It doesn't matter, I've never been found out. How do I know this? Because they would have to give it up because they would have to gloat about it, that they were able to figure it out.

Hiding in plain sight" works because they least suspect it. Try it. Let me know how it works for you.

Lola's Diner

Thursday, October 15, 2009

National Grouch Day

Today is National Grouch Day. Now here's a day for me! One thing I will never be accused of is being overly happy.

I've always been accused of being a grouch. Now there's finally a day I can celebrate and put my grouch on and no one can give me a hard time! Back when I was working, I did accounting/bookkeeping work. Very detailed stuff. Concentration essential. Co-workers always took my concentration and attention to my task as grouchiness. I even had a former VP where I previously worked constantly writing me up for it. It's kind of hard to improve when the bar was set so high. The receptionist was so jovial and happy she came in every morning singing. (No...I'm not kidding.) It made me look bad even when I was really making an effort to 'look' less grouchy. I got really tired of being accused of being grouchy and employed the age old technique of 'faking it till you make it'. Of course I never did 'make it', but I faked it so well that I was actually complimented on the changes I made. Of course I still never entered the office singing, but I did fool them. (Oh, and the singing receptionist? She's still there. People would often remark 'what the hell is she so happy about?' or remark to others that they wished she'd just 'shut the hell up'.)

Oh well, embrace your grouchiness today! I know I will!

Lola's Diner

If I Could Blog Back Time Thursdays - Infomercial Products

Come join me for this week's edition. Post yours Thursday, and comeback and sign up with MckLinky.
This Thursday's topic is: Infomercial Products -
What was the first Infomercial Product you ever bought?
Did it work? Do you still use it today?
What was the best, what was the worst Infomercial Product you ever bought and why?
For details on how you can submit a topic, and if used, earn 100 Entrecard Credits, click here.
I don't really recall the first Infomercial Product I bought. I never ordered any off of the Infomercials. I purchased them at the state fair or at Target. The first products I bought were probably the Ginsu Knife and the Sweepa. I was never impressed with the Ginsu. In fact I returned one for replacement one year at the state fair and it was exchanged for a new one immediately and without question. I love the Sweepa. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, here's what it looks like:
If you have pets, you have pet hair and the Sweepa is the fastest, easiest way to sweep it up. The last time I Sweepa'd the stairs I had enough cat hair for a small kitten. No lie! I always Sweepa before we clean the carpets. (I mean, before Anastasia cleans the carpets.) That way I get all the hair picked up so it doesn't get caught in the beater bar of the carpet cleaner.

One product that I wasn't satisfied with, I can't recall the Infomercial name, but it was a vegetable slicer that came with different blade attachments. I could never figure out how to get it to do what they showed on the infomercial.

DISCLOSURE: This is not a paid post. I purchased the items mentioned and received no compensation.

Please post your "Infomercial Product experiences" post on your blog. Then come back to Lola's Diner and leave the actual post link here. Please grab the html code for If I Could Blog Back Time Thursdays! Badge HERE.

Don’t forget to visit the other participants! It’s a great way to make new bloggy friends!



Lola's Diner

Monday, October 12, 2009

Gay Characters On The Soaps

When I first started my blog, I did several posts about how several shows were handling gay characters. Those posts were: AMC - Bianca Is Back, L Television (01/17/09), L Television (02/20/09). I thought I would do an update. Bianca is no longer on AMC and that story line just kind of died out. One Life To Live is currently taking on the topic of gay marriage. The storyline started out with one of the characters, a police officer, Oliver Fish, (played by Scott Evans) coming out to his parents. The actor's real life mother, Lisa Evans, played his mother on the show. It was your typical 'parents refusing to accept their gay son' storyline. Then they brought in this storyline of Dorian and Viki both running for mayor. I missed a few days, then all of a sudden Viki was touting how she had LGBT staffers on her campaign. Then Dorian had to join in and hired a new Campaign Manager, a lesbian. The next thing you know, Dorian is making speeches of her support for gay marriage and attending a rally saying that she was going to marry her partner, the lesbian Campaign Manager. Of course Dorian's character isn't a lesbian, she just an opportunist who has to one up Viki, and what better way to do it than to say that she herself is marrying a woman.

Ok, first of all kudos to ABC for taking on the 'coming out to your parents' topic and kudos to them for having the characters include gay marriage in their mayoral campaigns. However, once again, I'm not really happy with where this is going. One the one hand, it's great to think that someone would 'pretend' to be a lesbian in order to further their political career. On the other, this seems like it's going to make a mockery of gay marriage like I Know Pronounce You Chuck & Larry.

So what do you think of this storyline on One Life To Live?

Lola's Diner

International Moment of Frustration Scream Day

Today is International Moment of Frustration Scream Day. Now this is a holiday I can get into! No gifts to buy, none to return and I get to scream (at the top of my lungs, or quietly, whatever suits my mood.)

How many opportunities do you get to scream when you're frustrated and not have people think you're crazy? I can really only think of a few. When you're in your car on the freeway stuck in massive traffic, you can certainly belt one out. Or if you're out in the middle of nowhere, you in your car, you can certainly scream. You can scream just about anywhere in you're long as you have the windows rolled up. (People will just think you're singing, like they haven't seen people sing in their car before?) When you're home alone...of course. I suppose screaming whilst walking through the park isn't necessarily a good idea...could get you a bunch of wailing squad cars and some embarrassment.

I'm guessing we all kind find a place that's appropriate...where the police won't be summoned when we do scream.

Myself, I'll probably scream in frustration at the ex. He's always doing something (or not doing something that he should be) and frustrating me.

So what will you frustration will you scream about?

Lola's Diner

Sunday, October 11, 2009

National Coming Out Day

Today is National Coming Out Day. From Human Rights Campaign:

"Whether you're lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or not, be proud of who you are and your support for LGBT equality this National Coming Out Day.

Watch HRC's Conversations From the Heart videos, donate your Facebook status and pledge to have conversations from the heart with your friends and family for equality. A simple conversation can change the lives of people you care about."

In honor of National Coming Out Day, I'd like to refer you to my 10 Conversations in Join The Impact's10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge. If you missed my original posts, be sure to click on each to view them:

My 5th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 6th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 7th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 8th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 9th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 10th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge
Also in honor of today, I'm going to finally put my sticker on my car before one of our kids snags it on me again.'s not a bookmark! It's supposed to be displayed proudly to signify that I support Equality. And if you've spent any time on my blog, you know that I do.

And I put this on my Facebook:

National Coming Out Day is today. My partner Anastasia and I were amazed to watch President Obama's speech at the HRC Dinner. To think that so much legislation for "our" rights is on the horizon, is remarkable. On a day when so many are coming out or contemplating coming out, I am so appreciative of the acceptance and support of Anastasia's family.

Lola's Diner
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