Life on the Ridge
bko lounge
links and archives
the parent perspective




Happy birthday, Nana!

Today Nana begins her 87th year. She's partying it up too. Lunch with the girls, dinner with the family. Free food, gifts. Tomorrow she goes the mountains on vacation.


Have a happy year, Nana.

I love you much.


There are times when I resent the Florida sun, the summer-like weather we have year round, the green that never changes. I want to burrow under blankets, wrap myself in wool sweaters and drink hot cocoa to get warm.

Today is one of those times.

I want to look out my windows and see fading golds, brilliant reds and brittle browns. I want to see people wearing sweaters and shoving their hands deep in their pockets to stay warm. I want to smell the crumbling leaves, have my skin tighten in a chilly wind and hear the faint crunch of frosted grass with each of my steps.



One simply must master the art of shrimping if one has any hope of ever escaping an opponent's grasp when grappling. I shrimp quite well, thank you very much. I just don't like to shrimp in public.

Oh no. I cannot bring myself to do the shrimping drills at the dojo. I can shrimp my way from one side of my house to the other. One day I will make myself an outfit out of Swiffer cloths and don the tacky outfit before going on one of my shrimp crawls. You cannot begin to imagine the dirt one picks up when sliding along the floor in this manner.

Other than a sparkling clean floor, shrimping is excellent for trimming and toning the waist. One inch has disappeared from my waist in the psat few weeks. All it took was shrimping 3 times a week.


brooks the builder

Nana gave Brooks a birdhouse kit for his birthday. Brooks thought this was the greatest present. He spent some time Saturday afternoon putting it together. All he has left to do is the painting.

When he's done, he'll be able to pat himself on the back and say, "I built that all by myself." Such a cool thing to be able to say at the age of 5.


Happy Birthday, Dad!

Hope your day has gone well. Did you enjoy playing with Coley and holding Mimi? Did you laugh at the silly cards sent your way?

Love ya! DDD


the zoo

I absolutely love going to the zoo. Robert can't stand it. He has declared that there are far too many gazelles on display. There are times I agree with him, but still, overall the zoo is always a treat. Since Brooks insists on going there every year for his birthday, I'll be dragging Robert every October for at least another few years. Hopefully.


Zoo shots from yesterday...


juvenile gorilla pondering the meaning of freedom

a modern day dragon

lazing in the sun

can't argue with laughter

HE can go catch dinner if he's so hungry.

look at those eyelashes!


Happy Birthday, Brooks!

Proper gift etiquette:

Place all gifts on sofa and sit next to them with a dragon hoarding gold gleem in one's eye.

Always open the cards attached to the presents before tearing into the presents.

Start the unwrapping process from one corner. Peel paper back slowly. Ooh and aah over it, but do not let anyone else know what it is until the gift is completely unveiled. (This frustrates siblings beyond belief!)

Proudly show off your present and announce, "Nana always knows just what I want!"

Somehow work up to announcing to the world that you are one year older. But be subtle.

Remember... sharing of gifts is not always necessary. Especially if cool poptarts are involved.

Then dig into your cake!


clickety clack

Aunt Evelyn taught me to knit aeons ago. Somewhere I still have some knitting needles that she gave me. Somewhere in my hope chest I have the first sweater I ever made.

Living in South Florida is not conducive to knitting. My hands get sweaty. The weight of the knitted item sitting on my lap makes me hotter and sweatier. But this week I don't feel well and thus it is the perfect time to go digging in my craft supplies for things to do. Besides, Steph and I have agreed that we need to start using up our supplies instead of hoarding them for some future inspiration.

Two days and three scarves later...

Aunt Evelyn would be so glad that I haven't forgotten all that she taught me.


sniff, snort, sneeze

I'm sick. I'm so sick I grab the kitty that can't stand to be held and then fall asleep holding her tight. And she let me! That should tell you something.


xmas is coming

I'm stressing already.

This year my house is on the Parade of Homes tour in our subdivision. My decorations will have to be superb. My house will have to be immaculate. I need to dry more oranges than I did last year. Oy!

Rick is having a holiday party in the middle of the month for the kids on his jiu-jitsu team and in his class. Lots of kids and their parents and siblings running around. Feeding them isn't a problem. Having only 2 bathrooms is.

Then there is the progressive party. I'm the hostess in charge of the dessert. The grand finale. I was asked to do this. Quite an honor. At least I believe it to be. I get to bake to my heart's delight.

And then there are the presents. We always fill a gift bag with homemade treats. Each of the dragonets makes something to put in the bag. Brooks is making picture frames. Who knows what the other two are making. Kari wants to make soap. Rick will make candles again. I will do the usual jar mixes and hot cocoa mix. I'm also adding a few little home-made books to the bags. Here's one.


I am a force of nature


The Force of Nature Quiz
brought to you by Quizilla

passed on from Steph


for the third time!?!

Frog has fallen and broken his leg for the third time. Yes, the third time. This time he added ligament damage to the destruction.

Late Friday night -- or was it early Saturday morning -- Frog was snoozing away on his wicker chair when a wild dream took over his mind and body. He began sprinting along while on his side and toppled onto the floor. He yowled, pissed and hobbled under the bed.

Robert and I freaked out. I sat there saying, "Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god." Robert jumped up and pulled Frog out from under the bed and put him on the bed to better get a look at him. Frog yowled, pissed and had to be put back on the floor.

This morning I called the vet and took him in. Waiting people were not happy that a mere cat was able to go right into an exam room while they sat on benches with their pit bulls and shepherds. First the technician came in to do a quick check of Frog. We had to take his cage apart to get him out. Frog pretended to be fine. He walked forward 2 feet, sat down and wrapped his tail around his body. The technician stepped out of the exam room and closed the door. Frog immediately yowled, pissed everywhere and hobbled his way back into his cage. Unbeknownst to him, the technician had watched him through the window of the door.

Frog took out his anger on the poor vet who simply wanted to heal his leg. Of course, our confidence was shaken when the vet palpated the injured leg and muttered "Oh shit!" under his breath. I spent a good while calming the seething kitty down. I left after they gave him a sedative... necessary if they wanted to capture clear x-rays.

At approximately 4:30 I was able to pick up Frog and bring him home. But first I met with the vet. We looked at his x-rays and Dr. B pointed out the latest break in Frog's leg, the ligament damage and explained how there was little that could be done for the kitty. After all there is already a rod in the leg and numerous pins holding everything together.

Frog must be kept in a small area or cage for the next 4 weeks at the minimum. Four plus eight equals twelve. Twenty-three percent of the days this year, Frog will have been kept in a confined area. We are keeping our fingers crossed that somehow his leg will heal well and will never ever break again.

My mom suggested we talk to the vet about fosamax. Hmmph. I think a certain feline needs to learn that he is not meant to be up anywhere off the floor, that he is forever earthbound, that he has a fragile leg and must therefore act accordingly.


what not to wear

My chin dropped. Hit the marble tile floor of the food court with enough force to crack the tile in half. Seriously. Thunk after thunk, giggle after giggle echoed around the Pembroke Lakes Mall. The woman in red and black was oblivious.

I noticed her shoes first -- a pair of shiny black half-boots with big silver buckles on the sides. They were so shiny, passers by were reflected in them. Red and black horizontal striped socks emerged from the boots and ran up to the knee. (Yes, like something a halloween witch would wear -- just in red and black rather than orange and black). Plaid shorts in red and black were decorated with at least 5 heavy chains and a pair of undersized red suspenders. A red and grey floral see-through knit shirt topped the outfit of horrors.

Yes, you read see-through. No, the woman was not wearing a red or black bra to support her perky breasts. A bra would hide the silver rings with onyx beads looped through her nipples. The nipple rings matched the ones that pierced her lips -- one on the right side of her lower lip and one on the left side of her upper lip. I'm guessing that was to prevent the hoops from hooking together by accident and thus gagging the wearer temporarily.

Kari and I couldn't help but stare. The outfit demanded that we stare. And giggle. And imagine what our various friends would say if they could see this fashion abomination parading through the foodcourt.

So we giggled ourselves silly. The more we giggled the sillier we became. Robert just shook his head at us as we tumbled through the front door.



Today my brother turns 35.

Perhaps today will be the birthday of my nephew or niece.

Wouldn't that be funny?


the debate

Kari had to stay up 90 minutes past her bedtime in order to finish her homework. Yes, she had to watch the entire debate. I had to watch the entire debate and occasionally prop her eyelids open.

Watching the debate with my daughter was interesting. She paid close attention for the first hour before starting to drift off into dreamland. She was able to see Bush's points, but Kerry's left her confused. She wanted to know what his plan for Iraq was and he kept mentioning it, but never explaining it. Kerry did say to learn more, go to his website. Kari wanted to hear it from him.

Bush's repeating the same phrases over and over got on Kari's nerves, because she felt (rightly so) that he was using them in inappropriate places. She agreed with him that Kerry was sending conflicting messages to the world about his stance on Iraq.

Her final verdict? She would cast her vote for Bush, because she understood what he was saying. With Kerry, she was getting lost.

Rick wandered through and watched with us from time to time. He kept shaking his head and saying he was glad he couldn't vote because he didn't feel either candidate was good for the job.

Brooks just wanted them to shut up.

I have to agree with Brooks. I'm sick and tired of hearing about Iraq. I want to know how each candidate plans to deal with problems here at home.

"Earth laughs in flowers." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson