Wednesday, August 29, 2012

TMI: Bras, Teats & a Quickie

Rutherfordton, NC 28139
What were you thinking?????
Oops, I meant Bras and Treats! Got your attention though, didn't I? 
Just a quickie post since I've been so busy WORKING.  

Looking over some of my blog draft notes, I'll just touch on a couple of  "filler" subjects. No, not filler as in foam padding or falsies for a bigger bra cup size as the above subject line may lead you to think. Just subjects I jot down in case life gets boring and I have nothing to thrill my blog followers with. I can pick out a couple of items to quickly fill a blog post. Blogging takes quite a bit of time if you add links on the subjects/items discussed.
BRAS: Be forewarned, this may be TMI (too much information) for some of you.
Some history. Why am I telling the public about my boob history? Because posting on a blog doesn't FEEL like it's public. It just feels like a journal. Sort of like credit cards...when you charge something, no cash is exchanging hands, so it doesn't FEEL like you are spending money. At least with a blog, if I regret what I posted, I can delete it.  No, I do no have a credit card problem. I pay off my credit card in full every month, so no interest is paid.
At age 12, I was into a real "cup" bra. Not those silly training bras that were just flat pieces of stretch fabric like my fellow 12 yr old girls wore. 
In 7th grade, a boy yelled to me "Can I twist your knobs?" I smacked him upside the head! He left me alone after that. "Friends" wrote in my 6th grade yearbook, things like "you're really built" and "to the mountains", etc. That was in only 6th grade!

By the age of 14, I was a DD! Being only 5'3 and short waisted, I was all boobs from the waist up.  Back in the 70's, there were no pretty large sized bras. Just white, "old lady" bras. I hated it! My nickname in high school was "Boz" for big bazooms!

At 22, I was working for the US Postal Service and had a good health plan and a wonderful, understanding boyfriend, Ozzie. He knew how I felt about my breasts. He suggested a breast reduction. Done! Down to a petite B cup. Loved it, never regretted my decision.

Present day: I've gained weight and that includes in my breasts. I've got big boobs again and hate it. (Well, maybe if you lost some weight you dumb ass they'd shrink too!) Although, now in 2012, there is a large variety of pretty large cup bras, I no longer care. I want comfort over style. Which leads me to my review of the GENIE BRA.
My rating 3 out of 5
I purchased this bra at Walmart for $9.99. Great price for a bra, but then maybe you get what you pay for.
This bra is all elastic and soft. 
Definitely NOT a pretty bra. I bought the flesh color.
This bra is definitely comfortable and gives me enough (not great) support.  I will sacrifice great support for great comfort.
I am now a D size breast. If any guys have read this far, don't get too excited. They are old lady D size. Ewww! Breasts only a husband can love, or like, or well learn to appreciate.
I bought an XL and it fill well, if maybe a little tight around the base.
It doesn't do much shaping. No torpedo breasts, but does anyone really like that look? Not a lot of lift either. Enough lift that my "girls" are not visiting my waist. 
The shaping is definitely a "natural" look, which personally, I kind of like. It looks and feels almost, as if I'm braless...almost.
I don't think this is a bra for a young person, simply because it is ugly and a high rise, meaning this bra covers most of your cleavage. But for me, a secure woman in her 50's who's not trying to impress, I like it. Comfort with enough support was my goal. Genie bra delivered.
**update 09/13/12: Not sure if I mentioned that this is a one piece bra, so no hooks to help the girls fall into the bra easier. But, on a review, I saw mentioned to step into  the bra and it's easier to put on rather than over the head and squishing your arms through. That person was correct. I now put me feel through the opening, slide it up the bod and very easy to slip on the straps. Now I love this bra even more!
My dogs love these. They are easy to break in half for smaller treats. All good ingredients. I may have to try some of their other treats and the grain free for Devin.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Blog settings change

Just a quickie to let you all know, I have changed the settings for COMMENTS. Now most people should be able to post a comment.

You no longer need to be a "member" of my blog.

You no longer have to verify that you are human, so no more unreadable scrambled words!

And for now, I'm allowing you to be anonymous, if you'd like. 

I hope this will enable my blog followers to be able to participate more in my blog.
Now Dasher! Now Dancer! Now Prancer and Vixen!
On Comet Comment....Go ahead and feel free to comment.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Round Two

Rutherfordton, NC 28139
Well, we are on to not only year two, but round two of our adventure. We have made a "circle" of the US, staying 1-2 weeks at most places and speeding through the northern part in order to make our timeline to the East coast. 
Looking back, we are amazed that we have traveled so far, but yet seem to have not seen too much. Friends ask what was our favorite place. To be honest, we haven't been impressed with too much of what we've seen.
The snow capped mountains in Colorado were a cool site.
Santa Fe, New Mexico is a very cool town, that we felt very comfortable in. But, we hate the landscape.  From afar, the red/brown rocky mountains look beautiful in their own way. But the dry blah landscape is off putting. I rate a nice landscape by questioning..."Would I enjoy walking/hiking my dogs through here?" The desert area is just so dry with scratchy bushes around in the open with the overbearing sun. I wonder if I feel that way because I was brought up amid pine trees and green forests? Do people brought up in the desert area of the West dislike the thick green forests of the East? Is it claustrophobic to them? I believe when I was speaking to someone from Lubbock, TX, she mentioned that she is so used to the open flat land that a forest is indeed claustrophobic to her. 

We've arrived in North Carolina for our 3 month stay at the WONDERFUL FOUR PAWS KINGDOM CAMPGROUND. We were here for 5 weeks last fall. We have returned this year to help out. We'll be staying here until the end of their season, after Thanksgiving.  This is the first "work" we've done since starting our RV adventure. We don't NEED to work, but really wanted to help out Birgit and Mike with their workload at this terrific park. I will admit, that the last month and a half has been expensive. Traveling everyday (lots of diesel) across the US to get to the East coast, a new campground every day (no weekly discount), has reduced our checking account and even a little bit of our savings. These next 3 months should put us back in a comfortable position. We are not getting paid for our labor, but are getting the site free. So minimal diesel usage and no park fees for 3 months!
Yep, we are still modifying our RV. This is a work in progress, until we or if we upgrade in a few years.
We had to wait until we could have this shipped to a friend's house while in NJ. I've been wanting this for about 6 months now since reading it on RV.NET FORUMS.
We replaced our entry door window with an much nicer window from EASY WINDOWS.
It's always bothered me that we can't see out our "front door" (entry door).


I can see!
We purchased this window for $150.00 including shipping.
Not only can we now see through it, it is also that tinted, reflective glass that is through out the rest of the RV. So during the day, no one can see in.  We do have to be careful at night, because with the lights on, we are in a fishbowl. But the way our RV is set up, there is no reason for us to be hanging out in front of this entry door window.
The other nice feature of this window is that it opens! So now we can have the door closed, but yet still enjoy a breeze (if any) through this area.
The company states that the surrounding "molding" or border (not sure what it's called) will not yellow like the old window frame. That's the word! FRAME. Duh. And to finish praising this product, it was easy to install and hasn't leaked. We really like this improvement to our home.

On the 2nd photo of the door, did you see the paw print under the window? Here's a close up.
Sorry blog followers. The above saying does describe us. I may spew out all kinds of personal stuff, and may even give you a laugh here and there, but in reality, Scott & I are loners. If you've been following our blog, I have mentioned a number of times, that I'm in a bad mood because I've done too much socializing. I can only take being charming, well maybe just being nice, well really barely tolerating people in small, infrequent increments.
OK, I'm not THAT bad, but I'm more comfortable hanging out with your dogs.

The other mod I did was to add plastic drawers instead of plastic tubs in our rear clothes closet.  Previously, I had some plastic shelves with tubs on them to hold items. Every time we traveled, I'd open the closet to a mess because the tubs slipped off the shelves. I tried those spring type curtain rod thingies, but they didn't hold it back.
Off to Wally World and purchased the combo drawer units that can be stacked in different ways.  They work like a charm and keeps my things more organized also.
And....did you notice???? The second drawer from the top????
Come on, can you see what's in that drawer???? NOTHING! IT'S EMPTY! Yes, living in an RV I still have room for more "stuff". That drawer won't be empty long and NO, I will not be adding new items to the RV because of the empty drawer calling me.  I will just rearrange things to make more convenient and EFFICIENT.  
OK, I guess I have to admit, I really LIKE  romance novels. This is the 2nd romance in a row and again, I was thrilled with this book. Yep, I guess I'm a romance softy, as least when it comes to reading.

Earth Song (Medieval Song, #3)Earth Song by Catherine Coulter
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved this book. Loved the main characters and their "insults" back & forth, but yet you could get the feel of what was really going on behind those remarks.
Love that Philippa (main female character) is not a helpless female, but a woman who is educated won't take any crap. I respected her even though sometimes she acted before thinking and then had to suffer the consequences which is the base line of this story.
Yes, this is a medieval romance, but there is some suspense included,  some fairly erotic or maybe even some mildly graphic sex scenes also.
It was difficult to put this book down and thought about the book when I wasn't reading it. I look forward to another book by this author, although will probably take a break from romance for a bit.

View all my reviews

K-cups are very expensive. I like to keep my coffee habit below 50 cents per cup at home. So we order from COFFEE GIANT when we can, meaning when we are staying in the same place long enough to get a mail order and also that will accept mail at the campground.
We have been able to get some decent deals on pods via Coffee Giant, which are cheaper than and more space saving than K-Cups.
But recently, I have gone back to ground coffee, or better yet, beans that I can grind at the store.
I still use our single serve Keurig coffee maker, but I have accessories that enable me to use pods or ground coffee. I may have mentioned this before, but I'll mention again because I love both accessories.
To use coffee pods in a K-cup machine we have the Perfect Pod Holster. To use ground coffee we use My-Kap Kaps.
Anyway on to coffee review...

Margaritaville "State of Mind" Coffee: Supposed to be a medium/dark roast. I felt it was a little weak. But more important, it was not bitter.  I prefer my ground coffee, espresso ground. It seems to give me a stronger cup of coffee. Since this bag was pre-ground, it was a coarser grind, which may give reason for the weak strength. I would buy this again. It is easily available at Walmart for under $8.00 for a 12 ounce bag.

18 years!

AUGUST 27, 1994

After dating for 1.5 years and living together 8 months of that time, we made it legal. We were 38 (Scott) and 37 (Deb) at the time of our marriage. I had lots of fun in the 80's (DISCO!!) and early 90's. Dated a lot, learned to be very independent.  I "sowed my wild oats" and finally when I was read to settle down, I found a sweet, sweet, man with no ties to a former marriage or children. He also didn't want children as I didn't either. So why get married? Mainly to please our parents, to yes, make it legal in case anything should happen to either of us. A girlfriend/boyfriend would have no rights in case of some medical situation etc.

I laughed for almost 10 minutes when Scott proposed with champagne and strawberries. Poor Scott didn't know what to think.  My laughing was from nerves! I've been single so long and afraid of commitment, but yet I knew I wanted to spend my life with Scott. FINALLY, after I got control of myself, I said "yes."

At the wedding ceremony, held in our back yard, I cried and cried! The mayor officiating the ceremony actually had to stop and ask if I was ok! I was so scared. Not so much of the commitment, but knowing that I am taking Scott's heart into my hands and I could break it if this marriage didn't work out. I was overwhelmed by my responsibility for his precious "heart". We finally got through the I do's and it's been a wonderful marriage ever since. Not very many fights at all.

We mostly have the same views of most subjects, like to do the same things, etc.  Below is a congratulations I received from my Dad this morning.

Hi Deb & Scott,
Eighteen years! Yes, eighteen years Scott has endured Deb's strange moods. ;) winking where we remember only maybe 5 or 6 years.
Eighteen years Deb has enjoyed Scott's wonderful traits, his love & affection, :x lovestruckskills, self control, etc, etc.
Yes, guys, you have been married for eighteen wonderful years-congratulations!
 Love, Mom & Dad 

The dress was actually like a pants suit. It looked like a dress but was actually two billowy legs, so I could ride the motorcycle.
Back row left to right:
Beverly, Maid of Honor - Debbie, Bride - Scott, Groom
Front row left to right:
Bobby (nephew), ring bearer - Amanda (niece), flower girl - Rose (niece), bridesmaid

Yep, typical teenager...Rose was about 14 when she was a bridesmaid. Looks happy to be there, huh?
I made (sewed) all the girls' outfits. They were also one piece pants suits/jumpsuits.


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Precious Health

Bear, DE 19701

We were at Lums pond last year in July. It was so hot then, that I never exlored the park or found Lums Pond! This time the weather cooperated somewhat and one morning it was a comfortable 70° and the grass was still wet and freshly cut. I finally found the pond. There is a rustic trail around this tangled shaped pond. Many fingers extending out. At the trailhead is a bright yellow sign stating that walking along the trail around the pond will take 3-4 hours. I suppose people have started out and not realized what they got themselves into. I'll stick with walking around the campground.
Lots of recycling at the campground. They recycle just about, plastic, corrugated cardboard, thin cardboard (cereal boxes, etc.), tin, aluminum, oil, batteries...

While here we were able to spend an evening with long time friends from Delaware and spent a couple of days with Scott's parents. Our time with his parents was bittersweet. It was wonderful to see them again after 10 months, but difficult to leave also. They are up there in years and you just never know how much time... Dealing with the mixed feelings after leaving them is a work in progress. We are voluntarily leaving them and not knowing when we'll return. We feel guilty because their time is probably limited and we have chosen to not stay near. But on the other hand, this is an opportunity for us to experience now. Scott's parents may be seniors, but just because we are younger, you never know what could happen to cause us to stop this life.  My feeling is we have to grab this opportunity while we can. I am so thankful that Scott and I are healthy and able to enjoy our travels.  I suppose I take my health for granted, since I've gained so much weight and rarely exercise. Maybe this visit to Mom & Dad Buskirk will be a "wake up" call for me to take better care of myself. Scott's parents are in their 80's and until recently have been active and fairly healthy.  If I don't start taking better care of my body, I won't be getting around very well if I even make 80.
Stay tuned, to see if that little kick in the ass I just gave myself works.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Bear, DE 19701
Ahhhh, we are sort of back to our "normal" RV lifestyle. Our trek from NV to NJ is over. Our social and medical obligations are almost over. This week we will be visiting Scott's parents and possibly some friends in DE. I know it sounds terrible to call visiting family & friends "obligations", but it's just that it came all in a 3 week span. if all this activity could be spread out in a 3 month span, that would have been more enjoyable.
Let the crochet marathon begin! A little catch up first.
I brought stash with me when we started F/T and packed them into ziplock bags with coordinated patterns. My last two projects have been with new yarn. Sigh...The storage unit in NJ has the rest of my stash, as well as a tub of yarn and patterns at a friend's home. I haven't made much of a dent in the projects in the RV. But a year living in the RV, I've found some more "hiding places" for more stash.

Kimono (finished): Not sure if I'm repeating myself, but...I recently finished a KAL (Knit A Long) with a small group of ladies that are also RV'rs. If you are a crafter and an RV'r, check out CAMPGROUND CRAFTERS. We knit the BRIGHT & BREEZY KIMONO, which is a free pattern from Caron Yarns.  I made mine in variegated pastels for the summer. Others made in a deep rich, autumn red and 1 person in an ivory color.
Bright & Breezy Kimono
Excuse the lady modeling in the fat suit. Maybe next year I'll have a better model.

A post taken from KNICE KNITTIES BLOG
Yes, I am a plus woman. I've learned to live with it. I used to be hot, but now, that just comes in flashes. One of these days, I will make peace with my figure and have a better body image. But for now, I will use yards and yards of yarn to cover up.

Shawl (almost finished): CLADONIA SHAWL is a small striped shawl with lace edging. I'm on the final picot edge of the lace. I've purchased some beads to give the picot some weight, so it will block nicer.

GAAA (ongoing): GREAT AMERICAN ARAN AFGHAN was supposed to be a 2 year KAL. I started it in January of 2008. There are 24 blocks, 1 block a month = 2yrs. Should have been finished by January of 2011. Not! I'm still determined to finish this, but I do maybe 2-3 blocks a year in between other projects.  Here's a sample of a couple of finished blocks.

CROCHET MARATHON: While in NJ, I quickly went through my stash and pulled out some FUN FUR and LB HOMESPUN. Back when I lived in a house, I would volunteer to do Fundraising and Rescue awareness events for our rescue, ABOVE & BEYOND ENGLISH SETTER RESCUE AND ADOPT-A-SETTER, IRISH SETTER RESCUE OF NJ.
I went through a faze of making ponchos for kids, but people thought they were some sort of dog sweater, since I was representing dog rescue. So then I started crocheting dog sweaters. I thought they would sell great, but most events were in the summer, so who is thinking of a warm dog sweater when it's 90° out! I made these sweaters with LB Homespun yarn, & edged with fun fur, which produced great looking washable sweaters

My pile of Homespun, soon to be dog sweaters.

So I have plenty of this yarn, but no need to make dog sweaters, until I gave an couple to Birgit from FOUR PAWS KINGDOM. She was able to sell them out of her RV Park/Dog store. Since we're working there this fall, she asked for more! Great! Get rid of my LB  Homespun!!!!! Destash!!!!! So I'm on a mission to just make these dog sweaters until the Homespun is gone. So no new projects for a while. 

I am also crocheting 6"x9" rectangles for a charity project that make afghans for the wounded soldiers in the Veteran Hospitals in the US. This is their last year of doing this after sending out over 8,000 afghans over the years. So, I'm determined to use up my acrylic yarn for this charity. More destashing!!!!!
Ray's Service Center 85 Steiner Ave. Neptune City, NJ 007753
5 out of 5 stars
We have been going to Ray's for years. He has worked on all our used cars. Family run business, reasonable (for mechanics' prices) prices. TRUSTWORTHY! Most services done within a day. They keep you informed and give you the option of how much you want done or spend. Now that we have moved out of the area, we really miss this business. Everyone is friendly and take the time to explain things to you.

A & S Pizza 5 out of 5 stars

While staying at the local County Park, we ordered take out a few times.
GARLIC KNOTS: The best I've had. Little knots of home made bread covered  with parmesan cheese, oil and garlic . Wonderful combo. The garlic is always sweet.
CHICKEN FRANCESE: 3 pieces of chicken breast, lightly breaded and pounded thin. Covered in a delicious light lemon/butter sauce. Absolutely delicious!
FETTUCCINE ALFREDO: Nice cheesy and creamy dish.
EGGPLANT PARMIGIANA: Wonderful. Great combo of thinly sliced eggplant with just enough cheeses and sauce so the eggplant taste still comes through instead of being hidden with gloppy cheese and too much sauce. 
SALAD: Their house salad was a surprise. I expected some lettuce and tomato. But their salad had crisp iceburg lettuce, with thinly sliced onion, tomato, cueumber and black olives. House Italian dressing was tasteful also.
BREAD: The bread that comes with the dinners is fabulous! It is like a dinner roll with the combo of olive oil, garlic and cheese on top. 
We never did try the pizza because there were so many other items to choose from.
How could we pass up pizza while in NJ???Duh! There's only so much we can eat.

Right Next Door (The Courtship of Carol Sommars & Father's Day)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
As I started this book, I thought, ugh another typical romance. Seems I haven't read a good murdery mystery in a while. But I am 40 pages into the book and loving it as I usually do with those "harlequin type" books. I think I'll be sick of the same basic story, but each time, I get caught up in the fantasy and remember back when I was young and desireable.
This is your average romance novel, but completely innocent, meaning no hot love scenes, just some "petting" that I would let my daughter read (if I had a daughter).
Two stories in one book, both single people with a kid. They live either next door or in the same neighborhood.
The author portrays single parenthood as if it's a fairly easy lifestyle. I would think not. Also, the children in the books are WONDERFUL! They interact with their parents, ask how they are, are concerned for their parent's welfare, don't really act up except in the most benign way. I may have been tempted to have kids if it was really that easy and my kids would be that nice.
Light reading, sometimes can be too predictable. I like to read a book of this type for a break from more involved books.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Living as a fat woman...

Freehold, NJ 07728
Today, it just feels like life. I'm stressed. Why? Who knows "Moody Debbie" has come out to play or more appropriately, pick a fight.
Have I become spoiled by the anonymity of the RV lifestyle? Meaning, being in strange towns where no one knows us and in a park that people keep to themselves?
This week has been way too busy for my tastes. Doctors' appointments, vet appointments, social appointments.
I snapped at Scott today, which is a rare thing really. I've become used to doing things at a very relaxed rate, with no time schedules and this week has been full of time schedules & having to be nice to people (ugh!),  
Or maybe it's New Jersey attitude coming out?
Or it could be the pressure of dealing with our 5'x15' storage unit. My motorcycle is in there, which takes up a lot of space and makes it very difficult to get to the boxes in the back.
Suzuki Intruder 800
Purging the RV: 
1. We have taken down some of the cornices that most RV's come with & put into storage. 
2. We have...again...gone through our clothes and I have put another 4 sweatshirts and a sweater into storage. 
3. My 10 speed road bicycle is going into storage which should free up a little room in the front compartment. I purchases a hybrid (mountain/road) bicycle earlier while on the road. That suits our needs much better than a skinny tired road bicycle.
4. Putting my monitor into storage now that I've converted to a laptop computer.
5. Gave away some plastic tubs we've been carrying around with us because they are too good to just throw out.
I'm pretty impressed with us that we didn't seem to overpack (even though we are slightly overweight) our RV for our maiden year voyage. Not too much purging out of the RV.
Purging the Storage Unit:
I suggested to Scott that we should sell my motorcycle. That would free up so much room! Since we've completed our first year, and love this lifestyle, who knows when I'll get that bike out of storage. That means more years of the bike just sitting there, more years not being maintained, more years that it may not start. Scott wasn't thrilled with selling it, so it will continue to take up space in our storage unit.
1,2,3. I sold 3 items that were awkward sized, so took up more space than I liked. We sold my scroll saw, our circular saw, and our miter saw. 
Our unit is filled to the max, so that made room for what we are taking out of the RV.
4. I also have about 4 60qt. plastic tubs with photo albums in them. I have brought two back to the RV and plan to do a lot of scanning of photos and then into the garbage the photos will go.
5. Vitamix. I bought this appliance approximately 12 years ago. Have only used it maybe 2x, but I couldn't get rid of it. I have found room in the RV for it, so it will now be available for me to experiment with. If I don't use it in the coming year, that will be given away.
I truly thought I would lose weight while on our RV journey.
I thought I wouldn't be baking cakes and cookies (true).
I thought I wouldn't be alone to have my own little snacks through out the day. Surprisingly, even in an RV, we have our private times. Scott enjoys staying in the bedroom and watching TV (he misses laying on a couch), so I get the rest of the RV to myself to pull out my stash of sweets.
I thought I'd be walking more. Even though we have Setters, they really don't need much exercise. Devin has settled down nicely and would rather be by our side, than outside. So walks are minimal unless we are at a really nice park that has close walking and/or biking trails.
We now lead a very sedentary life. No lawn to mow, no garden to tend, no house to clean and maintain. We read A LOT, I do a lot of crafts and spend a lot of time on the computer.
In my 20's & 30's I was anywhere from a size 5 to size 8. Constantly dieting, always conscious of what I ate. Exercised 5-7 days a week.
Age 34, Size 5
Age 44, Size 8-10
Age 52 Size 12-14
Age 55 Size 14-16
UGH!!!! Maybe this public display will finally be a wake up call for me. When I turned 50, I said I was tired of ALWAYS thinking about what I ate, so I stopped and the last photo is the result.
Luckily, my husband is a sweetheart and loves me in spite of the extra pounds. Do I love myself? Actually, because I am nearing 56, my weight doesn't bother me as much. When I meet people I do not access their weight, I try to see if our personalities mesh and if we can have fun together, or have common interests. 
It is quite freeing to be of an older age. I am more outspoken & actually more confident. I am free of worrying if people will judge me by my looks. I always looked younger than my years until I hit just over 40. Then my face started catching up with my age, so I figured why bother keeping a trim figure when my face is that of a mature woman, so then I let my body do as it pleased.
I am still dying my hair, but rarely wear makeup.
So to answer the questions, Do I Love myself?  I don't know. I'm disappointed that I've let my body "go", and I've always fought with myself to determine if I am a nice person, or worthy of the wonderful life I have.
Which leads me into the book review below.

Good in Bed (Cannie Shapiro, #1)Good in Bed by Jennifer Weiner
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The title is is not a book about sex.
Not sure how wide an audience this book will interest. But, it will definitely interest any woman that has ever struggled with her weight and self esteem. Maybe just issues of self esteem in general.
This is not categorized as self help book, but it may be a just that disguised as a light read.
Main character is a larger sized woman and tells the story of her life growing up and present. How she struggles with her self esteem because of her weight and her father.
Life is generally good for her, but she can't get past her weight and her love life.
I loved her sarcastic personality and bluntness about what it's like being fat.  In the end, it does make you think about what really is important and what you've made important that isn't.
I loved the book.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

NJ, well, maybe not THAT expensive.

Freehold, NJ 07728
Correction: For those following the blog regularly, Dave from FLIP FLOP VECTOR BLOG, commented that the park fee of $37./day and ending at $44./day after the taxes, and other extras, was a 20% hike. That did seem excessive. So upon rechecking, the fee is truly $37./day. No extras. 
There error was caused by our booking originally for 18 days ($666.), but we changed it to 15 days ($555.). I divided 15 days into the 18 day cost, so there was the error.
See, NJ is not that expensive.
Busy, busy busy. Another Dr. appt. today and lunch with a friend. I would like to refer you back to the Flip Flop Vector Blog. They are still under 1 yr. full timing, but their blog is already a wealth of information.  I'm impressed with HIS BLOG POST, A four month learning curve. He really took the time to post about the pros and cons, and hints for full timing.  I, on the other hand, just type whatever comes out of this little mind. If it's RV related and it helps, great. But for the most part, my blog is just for those "nosey" or "nibby" people that like to read about other people's lives.

While hanging out with my bro, Rob and his family, he took us the the Archery Range that is part of this park.  I wanted to see him in action with the COMPOUND BOW I gave him when we were purging items from our house to get ready for F/T RV'ing.

Notice the woods surrounding the area? That is what the campsites look like, so can be difficult for big rigs.

My brother's step-daughter (Chrissy) and her boyfriend (Chris/Christopher) also joined in for the weekend. Christopher works at ALLAIRE STATE PARK as a Blacksmith! They are both into Renaissance Fairs, so his bow of choice to keep in the correct time period is more like a simple LONGBOW.

My brother, Rob and his wife, Carol, camped at this same park for the weekend. Nice to spend a little time with them and get to know Carol a little bit better.
Carol invited us over for lunch last week at their home. But I think my brother had an ulterior motive! His computer hasn't worked for 1 month, and gee, while Scott is at the house having lunch, maybe he could check out the computer!
Since full timing, Scott doesn't have a stash of old computer parts anymore, so he wasn't sure what he could do. So after filling up on a delicious cheeseburger, great home made potato salad, tomato salad and birthday cake for desert, Scott took a look at the computer. Not fixable in an hour. So we lug the computer to our RV. This really makes our RV feel like home. You know the hard core motorcycle guys that bring their cycle into the living room to take apart and clean and put together again, well that's Scott with his cases open and parts spread all over our living room.
Every time Scott turned on my Bro's computer, the 30amp circuit blew at the site post. After 3x's he decided to not do again. Long story short, Scott was able to take parts from my old computer (soon to be thrown out) and was able to fix my Bro's computer. I'm so proud!
And what's Scott's payment for this (besides the lunch)? Scott's power supply isn't working, so off to Best Buy for a new one. All is in working order again.
Carol did offer to make another batch of her great potato salad as a thank you, but we won't be seeing each other again before we leave. Thank you anyway, Carol!

Battle Hymn of the Tiger MotherBattle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Interesting read. I have wondered at how the Eastern Culture raises their children. The Chinese have such a strong work ethic (as I did).
This book describes 2 generations of child rearing in a Chinese and then a Chinese-Jewish/American household.
It's the total opposite of what US rearing has become. Chinese seem to be too strict and the US is way too lax. There has to be a happy medium, which at the end of this book it seems is finally learned.

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

NJ, we don't live here anymore!!!

Freehold, NJ 07728
Turkey Swamp County Park, Freehold, NJ 07728
Site #B-2 $37./day (Nothing is cheap in NJ)
Our rating 3.5 out of 5
SITES: All great shaded, private sites. Many are NOT big rig accessible. All are great for pop-up and tent camping.
HOOK UPS: W&E. The water is located at edge of site, so you need an extra long water hose. Dump station in center of park.
BATHROOMS: Didn't look
LAUNDRY: Only 2 washers & 2 dryers. Need to purchase tokens at ranger office.
$3.00 for wash, $3.00 for dry. (Like I said, nothing is cheap in NJ)
PETS: Pets allowed
WIFI: None
AT&T PHONE: 5 bars
AREA/TOWN/SIGHTS: Lots to see. This is the "Jersey Shore". 45 minutes to NYC
Couldn't get an open sky view for Direct TV Satellite.
B-8 is big rig friendly.

New Jersey:
So glad we don't live here anymore.  NJ is not all bad.
If you like the Ocean, there is the beach, but it's expensive and crowded.
A lot of history here. Much action here during the Revolutionary War.  MONMOUTH BATTLEFIELD PARK has Revolutionary War reenactments.
Sandy Hook as we locals call GATEWAY NATIONAL RECREATION AREA is an interesting place to visit. There's a lighthouse, historic buildings called "Officer's Row" & a beach area.
Taking a boat ride from Highlands, NJ is really fun. It will go towards NYC, so you can get quite a view of the city.
Belmar, NJ is a popular college beach area. Lots of bars.  There's also BELMAR MARINA, where you can rent a party boat for a group of friends, or go deep sea fishing about 15 miles off shore. Many years ago,  I went bluefish fishing on a boat out of Belmar. Had a blast and yes, I caught a bluefish.

Ocean Grove, NJ is a really quaint town. There are many Victorian buildings and Bed & Breakfasts in this town.  The Great Auditorium is worth a look. There are all kinds of concerts still held here.
Lots of restaurants and cute shops in the center of town.  Stardust Memories (Woody Allen) was filmed in Ocean Grove.
Also in Ocean Grove is "Tent City", which are buildings surrounding the Great Auditorium. These buldings are a wood structure in the back half (about the size of a large shed) and canvas tent in the front half.
Courtesy of "The Coaster" Newspaper
But with the good , you'll have to deal with the high RV Park prices. 1 mile up the street at the RV "Resort" we stayed at last year, we would be paying $55./day! So $37./day is "cheap".
And you will have to deal with NJ traffic and NJ drivers and expect to be on the receiving end of the NJ salute while driving.
The Finger
And of course, please refer to my past post, about NJ jughandles!!!
RV LIFE: Scott has been dreading our trip to NJ. He feels like he's going back to a job he hates after a wonderful vacation. He's dreaded the drive from MA to NJ. He avoided both the George Washington and Tapenzee bridges. He'd rather go West and out of our way rather than drive the RV through NYC traffic, shore traffic, etc.
I, on the other hand just figure it's 2 weeks. That will fly by. We have a lot to get accomplished in that 2 week period. The campground we are staying at is nice and relaxing, so that can be our safe haven away from the busy traffic and daily to do list.

Another hot, humid and miserable week weather wise. Thank goodness we are in the shade. The AC is on all day and we'll be inside all day!

We have been back in NJ for a week. We've had our 2 dogs to the vet, ourselves to our General M.D., Scott to the Podiatrist (diagnosis, arthritis), our truck to the mechanic, a visit to my brother, a visit to a knitting pal & a visit to an ex co-worker. Haven't made it to our storage unit yet. That will be depressing. Next week is a full schedule also.
Devin, Devin, Devin...yes again he's in trouble. Just when we thought he was trustworthy, we came home to a happy boy and this.
That is Devil, oops I mean Devin on our bed proud of his handy work or more appropriate, his mouthy work. He tour apart Scott's pillow. Back in the crate again when we go out.

Phantom Prey (Lucas Davenport, #18)Phantom Prey by John Sandford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The main character, Lucas Davenport is a likeable guy. Family man and upright detective. This story takes us in two directions. The first being a series of killings among the "Goth" crowd. The other story about catching a mob boss. Odd how one does not have anything to do with the other, but helps make the book a more interesting read.
A little sci-fi added, which surprised me.  Overall, an enjoyable read.

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Final DiagnosisFinal Diagnosis by Roger C. Dunham
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Written by a doctor, so a lot of REAL medical terms were used.
Two interns on a month's rotation in the "jail ward", meaning prisoners from the local prison are treated on this 13th floor.
Some interesting prisoners, almost funny in an odd sense, sort of like the characters of the author Carl Hiaasen.
Interns get involved in the patients and also start questioning procedures.
More than 3/4 of the book is really just a medical story, sort of like E.R. The mystery part doesn't develop until the last quarter of the book.
Held my interest. If you are not into medical drama, this is not for you.

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The Nanny Diaries (Nanny #1)The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I read one chapter and had enough. This author is very bitter. I was already tired of hearing her negative generalizations of her potential employees.
With her attitude, I was NOT looking forward to hearing about the children. Especially since I'm not particularly fond of children and not afraid to admit that.
Did not finish, did not even get past chapter one.

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Friday, August 3, 2012


Bernardston, MA 01337
RV LIFE: The other day a motorhome pulled in opposite us. I noticed a banner on their window "GEEKS ON TOUR". Of course, I had to look it up on the internet.  Found their site, left them a message stating we are neighbors. The next morning we introduced ourselves, they gave me a tour of their full time rig and the custom furniture mods they had done by FOCAL WOOD PRODUCTS Amish crafted in Indiana. Here is their post with photos of their custom furniture mods.
Geeks on Tour give seminars at RV Rallies, on how to set up WiFi, how to wire your rig, tips on how to use PICASA, which I need. They are definitely full of knowledge!
The camp store was selling produce from a local farm, so we picked up just a few items.
Everything was delicious! The corn was on the sweet side and CRISP! The tomatoes were a rich red, sweet and juicy. The strawberries could have been sweeter, but still really good when I added sugar and made a sweet syrup that is great over vanilla ice cream.
I thought this was a really cute idea for a seasonal site.
STORE REVIEW: The camp store had a flyer for PARADISE FARM SUGARHOUSE. The flyer listed about a dozen different pies and other home made bakery items. (I'm never gonna lose weight). 
First, what is a Sugarhouse? Here's a clip from Wikipedia...A sugar house, also known as sap house, sugar shack, sugar shanty or sugar cabin. It is a semi-commercial establishment, prominent mainly in Eastern Canada & New England (USA). Old sugar cabins can be found on properties belonging to the first settler families. Like the name implies, sugar houses are small cabins or series of cabins, originally destined to belong to certain private or farm estates, and where sap collected from sugar maple trees is boiled into maple syrup. Often found on the same territory is the sugar bush, that is intended for cultivation and production of maple syrup by way of craftsmanship (as opposed to global mass production factories build for that purpose in course of the 20th century).
Ok, back to Paradise Farm Sugarhouse. OH MY GOSH!!! THE PIES!!!!!! I'll save the best for last.
First it's a cute rustic, old building. There is a covered porch to sit and have a cup of coffee with your bakery item.
Upon entering the store, the woman behind the counter says..."I know you!"  I look at her confused. "You have the two beautiful dogs!" Again, I look at her confused. Ends up she has an RV at Travelers Woods. Not only does she have a seasonal site there, she is our next door neighbor.
I took my time looking at all the many items she has in her gift shop. Lots of crafty items, jarred jams, sauces, etc. She had cold bottled Maple Soda. I was tempted, but since I don't like Creme Soda, I figured I wouldn't like Maple Soda, but I thought it was unique. I picked up some REAL maple syrup.  I must admit, real maple syrup is a little potent for my taste, so I sweeten and cut the strong flavor with store bought "pancake syrup". Did you ever notice the syrups in the grocery store are mostly "pancake syrup", not "maple syrup"? That's because you'll be lucky if there is any maple in it. You might find some with 2%. That's it. Most syrup is corn syrup & coloring. Mixing the potent real maple syrup with the pancake syrup crap, make for a nice medium maple flavored syrup.
I finally got to the little bakery display. Not too many items, but enough of a variety for me to get really excited, but not overwhelmed. Some cookies, pastries, scones... 
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES: I opted for one chocolate chip cookie. It was oversized and moist. I enjoyed it with a cup of milk.
PASTRY: I also picked out a raspberry pastry and a blueberry/cream cheese pastry. Scott & I split them so we each had a half. Delicious breakfast.
SCONE: Also had the Peach Scone for breakfast. I would love to have some more of those.
Picked up some packaged fudge produced by MAPLE CITY CANDY. This was not made at this sugarhouse, and we could tell. The fudge was dry and too sugary. I threw out the chocolate walnut fudge, but am slowly eating the peanut butter fudge, even though I've definitely had better,'s peanut butter...still tasty.
I was disappointed that there was only one pie left at 3pm. Her husband happened to be in the store and said, :Oh, she can make anything you want and bring it to your RV! I considered, but then thought Blueberry Crumb Pie sounds pretty good, so I took the last pie.  She threw in a couple of sugar coated apple cider donuts and also some day old, non sugared donuts for my dogs.
DONUTS: The apple cider donuts were another absolutely delicious item.  
PIES: But the best item of all is (or was since it is now all gone), the pie. First thing you notice is how heavy it is. She really packs in the fruit! What a fabulous pie! This may have been the best pie I have ever had! There were so many blueberries and the juice/syrup that dripped from the slice was wonderful. The crumb topping was wonderfu! She doesn't scrimp on the crumble. Lots of brown sugar. Yum!! We served this slightly warm with vanilla ice cream on top. This pie was so delicious, we had to order another pie. This time we're trying the Peach Crumble Pie. This pie is also heavier than expected. I put it on a postal scale and the pie weighs THREE POUNDS!!!
*update 8/4/12: Had a piece of the peach crumble pie for dinner last night. Another delicious pie. I do prefer the blueberry over the peach. I think because the peaches are larger pieces and more difficult to cut the pie.
I think this place should be called Paradise Pies and Sugarhouse.

SITES: We have been quite lazy these couple of weeks. It's been mostly too hot for us to enjoy the outdoors. We're quite picky about temps. Over 75° and we stay indoors. So even though this is a beautiful area of the country, with the GREEN mountains that I love (as compared to the brown/barren mountains of the west), we have spent most of our time indoors. 
We did find a couple of Geocaches yesterday. They were both small and the contents were wet.  I prefer the larger sized caches, with a pad to write your comments in and items to review and maybe trade, or room to add our own personal item. One cache was right across the street from the RV park entrance and the other was about 3/4  of a mile down the road. I earned a MA souvenir for this Geocache.
That's about as much site seeing as we've done. But as long as I can get over the guilt of "being lazy", I've been enjoying my time inside in my lounge/rocker, knitting and reading. Yep, I've become a little (well, not so little anymore) old (well not that old) lady.
PRODUCT REVIEW: Spend, spend spend as my Father says while shaking his head back and forth.
Scott just purchased a COBB Premier Portable Stainless Steel Grill and Smoker. 

This is because we are very unhappy with our Webber Gas Grill. 
Scott likes to cook on the grill, not just grill burgers, etc.  The Webber does not hold a consistent temperature.
First thing Scott cooked on the Cobb was a whole small chicken. Yum!!!! Easy to cook, and the end result is a moist and smokey flavored chicken. Yum!!
Second item cooked on the Cobb were ribs. He put a heavy rub on them and cooked. Not as tender as I'd like, but the meat did easily come off the bone and had that smokey flavor again.
PETS: Devin is still having residual problems from his cheatgrass incident way back in Boise, Idaho. We have an appointment with our "home" vet in NJ next week. His paw is still swollen with a hole in it. Scott squeezes but just a bloody liquid comes out, so hopefully that means no infection.

While visiting my friend who just moved from NJ to here in Mass., she told me about her yellow lab's female problems. 
(Published with my friend's permission)
My female dog had been getting recurrent UTI's and licking  at her hind end. The surgeon and internist  told me that she needed a  VULVOPLASTY (ie hoohoo-lift). So, after clearing up any infections she had, the surgery was done. Now I'm the talk of the new neighborhood--
my house is undergoing major construction and is not even finished, 
the landscaping is not done, but ...
my dog's vagina looks beautiful...feel free to snort on your wine here.

Our Travels