About Me

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Phoenix, Arizona
Growing up my initials were OP, which was pretty cool in the 80's, right? Then I got married and my initials got updated to match our very texting obsessed era that we now live in (and shake our heads at)...OMG. For those who are texting illiterate, I'll spell it out..."Oh, My God!". I pity the girl whose initials are W.T.F. (I won't spell that one out. You can Google it or email me for an explaination on that one!)


Dear So-and-So,

Dear young blonde girl I passed on the freeway,
While I'm glad you were not speeding while reading that piece of paper and talking on your cell, I do wish you had been at least going the speed limit. Or even better, NOT been on the freeway at all.

Dear Bed, Bath & Beyond,
You clearly have wonderful items and clever marketing. Today I fell for your $5 off coupon. Intending on only buying those green veggie freshness bags, I left with a reciept showing $96. I guess it could have been $101. Thanks alot for the "savings".

Dear Coffee Lady at the bookstore,
I could tell you wanted to be moody with me when I ordered my one shot of espresso w/a touch of water. But you did a fairly good job at covering your foul mood and I appreciate that. I wish the drink had been a touch hotter but I didn't want to push it with you.

Dear Cricket Cellular,
You may have great prices on your plans but there just a few too many restrictions & limitations. I'm an American, afterall. That means I want it all, everywhere, all the time. Hope you understand.

How to be productive when anxiously waiting

So, I was supposed to work today but wasn't needed. Which is totally fine with me because I have this issue I need to tackle ASAP.

I have to contact a Math Division Chair at the local community college to plead my case so I can get credit for a math class I took in 1996 in another state. Not too big of a deal, right?
Except I already went through this math class credit issue in January and thought it was resolved. I took a placement test, twice, so I could prove I already knew that stuff. Thought that pretty much took care of it. Now I have to put in my nursing program application by the first week of May and some guy tells me "you need that college credit". Needless to say, I won't be talking to that guy ever again. So I went and called someone who could give me a better answer to my problem. Let's just call her, "my girl", she told me how I might get this credit, just by contacting the Math Dept. Division Chair.
Amazingly, it was cake getting ahold of him this morning and providing, via email & links, the needed info. Now begins the whole "how to be productive when anxiously waiting" part.

Why am I so anxious about this? Because IF I don't get the credit, I have to take a stupid math class in summer school (you know what a hassle summer school is?), and I'd have to retake a nursing entrance exam, then I can apply for the nursing progam in July. The program starts in August.

Think there will be any spaces left by then? I don't either. Did I mention sitting through a math class for 6 weeks and retaking a nursing exam?? And then, I might have a shot in hell in getting in the program after all my hard work.

All this would drive me to drink if not for the fact that it's way before noon.

My only option is to make sushi rolls. And listen to Celtic Women of Song. What would you do?

Yes, I will be eating all of these. Today. All.

Still no email response from Mr. Division Chair?
I move on to salad.

Orange pepper, avocado, cilantro, carrots, green onions, tomatoes, shredded lettuce & warm white rice. Sprinkled w/sushi salad vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, sesame seeds and a spoon of pico de gallo to spice it up a bit. I don't know how I discovered I enjoy warm rice & lettuce but it's really good.

Still no email reply?

Write a blog about it all.

And stuff self with amazing, healthy, fresh salad while wishing it was a crusty sourdough, grilled cheese w/bacon sandwich.


House & Home

Thought I'd give a little update on what's going on at the GaffneyShack. :) That's funny. I just made that up. Gaffney Mansion just doesn't ring true. Here are the pics to prove it.

Exibit A: Lovely Braided Flowering Hibiscus tree from last year. Take-your-breath-away-gorgeous! Exibit B: Same tree. This year.

Exibit C: Here's another beauty from last year. I really fell in love with the Hibiscus.

Exibit D: Same plant trying its hardest to live up to my expectations. Bless its heart! I'm a sucker for plants that just won't die. Can you tell?

In other news, I'm on a nutrition and exercise kick lately. I use http://www.sparkpeople.com/ every day and am trying to have us eat even better. See!

I'm even trying to give up sugar in my coffee and adjusting my taste buds to milk alternatives. Brian is anti-milk and uses Rice milk. I'm starting to enjoy Almond Milk. We all know I don't need any of those cow milk hormones! I've got enough of my own, thank you.

I found this beauty at Sprouts. Made my very own California rolls!!!!! Notice the package does NOT say "fast" or "easy". Cause it ain't! But it's so worth it. All the Cali rolls at the store have imitation crab, no thanks.

But that wasn't enough so I stocked up with this: 2lbs sushi rice & 7 sheets of the sea weed wrap so I can make endless amounts of Cali rolls now! Yea!

Here's something at the house that actually got better than worse. Yipee! We got new fans! It was quite a project, for Brian, anyway. It was quite a Kodak moment but Brian wasn't smiling so I decided against it. They are up just in time. It might reach 100 degrees day!

Here's a sneak preview of things to come. We are making a patio cover in the backyard. Here's the bold color we chose for that and the front door and house trim. Wish us luck! The front door is already painted and so far, we love it.

That's about all for now. Hope you enjoyed this edition of GaffneyShack. :)


Fair Friday:Food

My "little" sister, Faith, and I went to the Maricopa County Fair today.

I only went to the fair because 1)free parking and admission, 2)spend time with my sister, and last but not least, 3)to take pictures!!!

I took about 50 good pics with my faithful Canon. I'm tempted to post them all but I thought I'd parcel them out a bit more by only posting a few on Fridays.
Welcome to "Fair Friday"

Some pics are fun, some are funny, some stink. (I'm tempted to post the one of the pig's rear end but don't think that's the best way to start this off. You'll have to check back to get a look at that one! It cracks me up!!)

Since today is Friday, here are some I'd like to share.

Um, Yes, Please! One of each!

Funnel Cake. Can't you just smell it!?
I love it but usually can pass it up when tempted because of the fat & calories.
But my sister said she's never had it so I had to indulge, for her sake.
Here's where the story begins...
Upon arrival to the fair I knew there was only one ride I wanted to do and since I was paying....I thoughtlessly used my $10 bill for the one ride.
Because we all know you want to do the rides first, before eating. Right?
So when I go to buy us a funnel cake, again, I am paying...I can only find $4 in my purse. Not a penny more. Faith has a few pennies to add (obviously, I'm paying). Problem is funnel cake guy says it costs $5. No problem. I will not disappoint little sister. We will have funnel cake!
We wonder around awhile until finding an ATM machine (that doesn't even thank me for the $3.50 charge!). That's probably more than the amount of my tax dollars that went to the bank bailout! Anyway, we quickly find a funnel cake stand and I see there are 2 sized cakes and although we are ravenous due to the powerful food smells at the fair, and despite the livestock smells. I decide, since I am paying, we will get the small size. Guess how much it cost? $4.
Must I explain?
For those math idiots (apparently I am one) our $4 funnel cake costs me $7.50. Yes, I'm still slapping myself.

Bright side of it all, she was happy and I got a blog out of it.


My dear patients...

He was in his 80's. Prostate cancer spreading to his bones as it so often does. Stripping away his muscles, his appetite, his ability to take care of his wife or even walk to the toilet. It was not taking away his ability to lament about his worrisome wife. He laid in bed, staring out the window as he went on about how she worried too much and made a big deal about nothing. "If I wake up with a stomach-ache she asks if she should call the doctor or do I want to go to the emergency room. NO! I just want some ginger tea! If I say the car is working fine, she worries about what if we get a flat tire tomorrow?!"

We talked about how all he really wants is for her to be happy and not worry. He almost tears up when we mention wanting his dear wife of 40-something years, to just be happy. That's all he's ever wanted for her.

"I tell her all you have to do is change how you are thinking! It's that simple!"

I just had to laugh. It's just that simple according to any 20, 40, or 80 year old MAN.
I asked him if he's talked about this with her lately.

"Yeah, yeah, I've been talking for 40 years!"
All I could think to say was maybe not the most sympathetic, but it was as frank as he was... "Well, you picked her."

He looks up at me and says, "Yeah, I picked her. Don't get me wrong, we are still in love. That doesn't mean it's any fun."

He was so funny in the midst of his venting and frustration. He was a dear old man, in his final weeks of life, still reaching out, dealing & processing his life. It was an honor to talk with him.


Sugar, Sugar

I make our own Sugar Scrub. It's so easy and cheap. So far it's just been plain ole white sugar, some old lavender body oil that was too strong to use alone, various essential oils that I like, and some "unknown age" olive oil (that I found in my husband's pantry back when we were dating).
Eventually I will venture into using brown sugar, spices, or salt.
Until then, this works great!
It's awesome to use after shaving , waxing, or epilating (you get used to the pain. it isn't that bad).
Here's my very special and specific recipe.

1. Fill glass jar almost full of sugar.
2. Pour in some olive oil and mix well (I like to use a chopstick for this).
3.Shake essential oils of various scents until I get bored.
4. Sniff. Mix some more until nice creamy consistency.
5. Add few more drops of oils. Mix. Sniff.
6.Feel proud of your thriftiness and laugh at the ridiculous prices of sugar scrubs next time you are at the department store or Target.

Finished product! Hubby should like this one. It smells like Home Depot.


Botanical Garden Pictures

I spent a few hours at the Desert Botanical Garden. Just me and my Canon (and a cup of coffee).

A person can't help but get fabulous shots when surrounded by such perfection.

The one below just took my breath away. Have you ever seen anything like this?

I really like this shot. I put alot of thought and work into getting it. I was crouching really low to get it from this angle.

Have you ever seen such a cactus?! Beautiful!

I edited this one with Photoshop Elements. I don't even know what or how I did it but I think it looks so cool! Here's the original.