Repost: Favorite Seasons

It’s here, it’s here! My favorite time of year is finally here. I love autumn. Even more so than summer, I love fall. It seems nature’s canvas explodes in vibrant colors and the trees become pretty clusters of orange, red, and yellow hues. This time of year is the only time I miss living in Michigan. I can do without the snow, sleet, and rain, but the fall in Michigan is spectacular—especially up North. When fall rolls around in Michigan, cider mills bustle with business as people, like me, enjoy lazy afternoons of people-watching while sipping fresh apple cider and munching on warm donuts. Yum! And then there are apple orchards, where people can pick their own fruit or buy bags by the pound. What else…oh yeah, and I love the petting zoos. Mind you, I’m afraid to actually touch darn near every animal—one of my many quirks—but, I do enjoy seeing them and watching other people pet them. One of these days, I’m going to have to work up the courage to pet a little goat on the snoot, or maybe an ear, something far away from chomping teeth. Hum…or maybe not.

But even still, fall is so scenic and vibrant with crisp air and leaves that crunch beneath your feet when you walk. Of course, raking the leaves is a major chore, but hey, that’s what kids are for.

Ahhhhh…it’s here. Enjoy the season while you can. We all know how quickly autumn gives way to winter, and we’ll be singing carols before you know it.

How about you? What’s your favorite time of year?


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Embarrassing Typos

I have to wonder about the person who put the letters on this sign. The optimist in me wants to believe this is a legitimate typo—a mere misspelling of the word “stuffed”. But what if this isn’t a typo? What if the person who created this sign actually thought the word “stuffed” was spelled this way? Scary thought, isn’t it?

The sad truth is that I have experienced situations where a cashier was completely incapable of making change without the use of the cash register. And don’t get me started on simple math. I’ve had shopping situations that required the person behind the counter to mentally count numbers or figure basic percentages, and sadly many people—some were adults—were not able to perform this basic function. How sad is that? I’m no math wizard by any stretch of the imagination, but come on…basic math. I’m talking adding and subtracting, not calculus or trigonometry.

So how can we fix this? Not that I’m a fan of blame, because I’m not, but who is responsible for making sure situations like these don’t happen very often?

What are your thoughts?


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In Defense of Animals 5K Race

This past weekend I walked in the In Defense of Animals 5K run/walk in the beautiful community of St. Marlo in Duluth, Georgia. What an awesome day! We truly couldn’t have picked a better morning if we tried. The weather was perfect—not too hot and not too cold, and the walk was a great way to get the heart pumping while supporting a worthwhile cause. Those of us with dogs brought our pooches with us, and even our adorable companions had a great time.

Prior to participating in this event, I was vaguely familiar with IDA, but I had no idea the organization was so actively involved in helping animal causes all over the world. As a dog owner, I can’t imagine a person abusing an animal, and yet horrible abuse happens all over the world every day. While I was walking this past Saturday, I struck up a conversation with one of the ladies in our group, and she told me about a family who abandoned their home to let the bank take ownership. But when they vacated the house they left their dog in the basement. Thankfully, the dog survived two weeks before a neighbor finally heard it and rescued the poor animal. I can’t imagine anyone being so cruel to another living creature.

If you’re not familiar with IDA, click here to read a message from the President of the organization which sheds light on how he came to be so passionate about this cause. With a long history—25 years of fighting for the rights of animals on every continent, IDA has been a powerful force in improving the welfare of animals all over the world. If you’re interested in donating click here.

On a side note, World Go Vegan Week runs from October 24th through October 31st. Admittedly, I’m a meat eater, mostly chicken, but I’ve thought about becoming a vegetarian many times. Doggone chicken is my favorite, though. I’d probably starve without it, but I see the importance of eating less meat. But if you’re a vegan, happy vegan week!


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My New Full-Face Harley-Davidson Helmet – Contest

I can’t remember if I told you guys this or not, but during my first ride—the long distance trip to Alabama, a section of padding inside my helmet popped off. I want to go on record as saying I didn’t do it! It wasn’t me—that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. For those of you who don’t ride, you’ll be surprised to know there is a shelf life for helmets. Who out there can tell us the shelf life for a helmet that has not been in an accident? Each person who leaves a comment with the correct answer will be entered into a drawing to win a $10 Starbucks gift card.

Okay, where was I? Oh yes, my new helmet. Isn’t she a beaut? I’ve used my new lid one time, but so far I’m really liking the comfort and feel of it. I had no idea there was a process for figuring out what size helmet a person wears. Basically, it’s just a matter of trying on a few and then comparing how snug it fits on your head. I’m no expert to be sure, but here are a few tips that I learned during my helmet sizing experience.

1. The helmet should fit snug against the crown of your head.

2. If you wiggle your head from side to side, the helmet should not wiggle with your movements.

3. It’s normal to feel the padding pressed against the sides of your face, but your checks should not be scrunched up to your eyes.

4. Your ears should not be pressed into the side padding.

So there you have it—motorcycle helmet sizing 101. Oh…don’t forget the contest. Leave me a comment with the correct answer to enter the contest to win a $10 Starbucks gift card. The contest winner will be announced next Tuesday, September 20th.

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Things That Make You Go Hmmm…

I was at the grocery store today and marveled, once again, at a familiar scene. I was wheeling my cart down the aisle when I noticed a woman standing next to the jars of spaghetti sauce, reading the label on a product in her hand. As I approached, we made eye contact briefly, and then she went back to reading the label. So far so good, right? Well…as I grew even closer, I realized her cart blocked half the aisle, and she stood a foot or so away from the cart, which meant no one could pass without either the cart or her body moving out of the way.

I saw her sideways glance in my direction when my cart reached hers, but still she didn’t budge. Hummm… Even though I knew she had seen me, I still said, “Excuse me,” and smiled politely (sorta, kinda politely). Now here is where it gets interesting. She looked up from the jar in her hand, touched her chest as if I had just surprised the snot out of her, and she truly appeared to be surprised. Hum….Either this woman was an amazing actress, or she was one egg short of a dozen—you know what I mean? How could she not have seen me when we made eye contact? Did she really think I just magically appeared out of thin air? Even if she didn’t see me, she mostly would have heard me. My rickety cart was clinkin’ and clankin’ something fierce.

And how about people doing crazy (this is my nice way of saying stupid) things while driving? Granted, I’ve been known to do a stupid thing or two in my day, but at least I rarely do them all at the same time! A few days ago, traffic was congested on the express way, but then it finally opened up as I approached my exit. After it opened up, I was cruising along when a woman in a red little beater pulled in front of me. From where I sat, it looked like she was brushing her hair with one hand, and applying lip gloss with the other. Had she not have pulled in front of me and then decided to break for no apparent reason, I wouldn’t have noticed what she was doing. Why do people do that? If there had been a car in front of her that would have been one thing. But clearly, there was no one in front of her. No, this woman simply decided to ride her break all the way down the expressway. Hum…

Come on, people, I can’t be the only one who sees this stuff. What kind of crazy behavior have you witnessed lately?

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Ready for Another Vacation

Last month I vacationed in lovely Curacao (Dutch Caribbean), but I find myself thinking about taking another trip. While we were in Curacao we met a family from Brazil, and now I keep thinking that Rio de Janeiro sounds like a great place for our next getaway. But then again, I keep imagining the long flight, which is roughly 9 hours. For some people 9 hours may not seem like that much, but I always seem to get stuck either sitting next to, behind, or in front of the resident “crying baby.” If not the crying baby then I most assuredly will sit in front of the resident “seat kicker.”

On behalf of all kind-hearted travelers, let me send this plea out to all of the seat kickers around the world. Please, for the love of sanity, please stop kicking (or letting your children kick) the seat in front of you. The seat isn’t a punching bag, it’s not there for you to take out your frustrations on, nor did the seat do anything bad to hurt you. It’s just a seat—stop kicking it!

Okay, let me calm down. I had a seat kicking flashback, but I’m it’s cool now. Sorry seat kickers, I’m not trying to pick on you, but really…

Alright, I’m moving on. So where to vacation next? I’m open to ideas. Anyone? Anyone at all?


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Dad Life Video

I’ve seen this video at least three times and it never fails to make me laugh. The video is so cute and creative that you can’t help but get a kick out of it. Check it out…this is dad life.


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