Saturday, December 22, 2007

And then - I lost it

Some days are ones you'd rather forget.  Rather to have not lived it at all.  If God issued "Do-overs" - I have no doubt that many other religions would happily convert in order to take away that one bad day.

Friday started off with wardrobe malfunctions where my sweater seemed to eat my neck and rub my pop-over boobs raw.  And then - I started to feel - odd.   I was going to pass out and I was all alone in my office.  So I shakily wandered to my 7-month pregnant co-worker's office and sat in her chair.   She laughingly assured me I'd be fine. And then - I lost it. I vomited in her trashcan.  Repeatedly.  

Harry then picked me up for lunch and held me in the floor of the bathroom while I held a hairdryer to my legs to get warm. I couldn't get warm and shook in odd convulsions.  

I had a doctor's appointment that afternoon so I wasn't too concerned about calling to ask about the reappearance of my breakfast, the shakes, and the weird clammy feeling that was hitting me in intervals of every ten minutes.

We waited for two  hours to get to see my doctor, who is the nicest man on earth (in scrubs) After using a hand-held device to find the baby's heartbeat the doctor had me get dressed and go across the hall to the Ultrasound rooms.  Using the "vaginal probe" (I hate the word for that) he showed me my baby.  

It looked no different than it did at 8 weeks.

Only this time there was no fluttering - no heartbeat. 

And then - I lost it.    But only internally.   I managed to hold it together outwardly for all general purposes.    Getting dressed,  I half-listened as the doctor began talking about the procedure I was to endure.  He explained it in more detail than necessary and I tried to focus on the one ceiling tile that was different than the others.   It was very important to me to be strong- to not show emotion over the loss of life that had happened inside me.  I tried not to think of the blame that I was lying on myself for being flippant and struggled not to question the incubating process that I thought my spic-and-span-never-had-a-single-STD-uterus would have no trouble with.

"It just didn't grow," the doctor said.  

"Yeah," I said.  "So when do I go have this done?  Will your staff just call me after the holdiays?" 

"I was thinking more like tomorrow.  There are risks...."  he went on to explain the bleeding-out process - and then - I lost it.

Two prescriptions and more tears than I ever thought possible, and all washed down with a caffeinated Pepsi (why not?), I woke at four a.m. to head to the Outpatient Center at the local hospital. Four hours later and I was sore, emotional and no longer going to be someone's mom. 

I can't even begin to tell the torment of the last day and a half.   My body was revolting against the no-longer-there-baby and was therefore making me sick and dizzy.   I knew, in a way, that it wasn't going to happen.  I knew, too, that if I were a crackwhore or a meth addict that I would have no problem carrying full term.  It's just another lesson of "life isn't fair." 

For now, I'm taking some time to heal, in more ways than one, but probably won't be online much for a bit.   I have truly enjoyed all the well-wishing from my online friends and know that I appreciate it all in more ways than you'll ever know.   So have a Merry Christmas and - even though I'm not the most religious person on earth - a few spare prayers in my direction wouldn't hurt.


Monday, December 17, 2007

NYC! Day One

Wednesday night, the eve of our trip to NYC, was spent with me lying on the couch with a pending migraine and Harry on the phone with Delta (hereinafter known as "Duck Felta!") who, seven hours before our flight was to depart, cancelled our connecting one.  

They were nice enough to offer us another flight.  From a different airline.   FROM A DIFFERENT AIRPORT IN D.C.  Yes.  So we decided to get up early the next morning and drive it.   All ten hours of it. 

Harry drove the Acadia the first leg and I volunteered to drive the next.    Hopping in the driver's seat and narrowly avoiding all the puddles that were forming from the rain, I set about our destination.   Harry curled up in the passenger seat, head on overfluffed pillow, ear buds tucked in his ears and a fluffy Transformer's blanket tucked around his legs. 

For about ten minutes all was well. 

And then I wanted a corn chip.  Being pregnant I am either having to pee or wanting to eat every other minute.    And since we had just left a gas station bathroom, I really  wanted that corn chip.  So I carefully reached down and shuffled around the bag to pluck one for my consumption.    And ran off the road.  But just a little!   I hit the burm enough to make that nice "airplane noise" and wake up Harry.    He looked at me and I smiled while popping the procured corn chip into my smiling mouth.   

"Sorry!" I mouthed at him.

He put his head back down and I contined to drive the hills of WV.  

And then I wanted to change the cd.  Nora Jones was putting me to sleep so I really wanted something more upbeat.  "Ohh - Shedaisy!"

I carefully extracted the cd from the visor and pushed it towards the slot on the dash.

And ran off the road again.

Harry started laughing and sat up to remove the blanket and earbuds.  "I'm sorry!  I wanted a corn chip and a new cd!" I was laughing so hard - I ran off the road again.

"Want me to drive?" he asked while peering through the rain and then watching me wipe the tears from my eyes.

"Yes," I said.  "Corn chip?" I offered. 

More later!  Including the trials and tribulations of trying to check in to the Waldorf=Astoria!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

No Choice Travel

Yet another reason why I love my hubby...

Holly K.’s confirmed evening itinerary for her December 2007 New York Trip. 


            Dinner at San Domenico (Italian, top rated) @ 5:30 1.07 miles from hotel (take taxi)

            Wicked @ Gershwin Theater @ 8:00, 0.47 miles from dinner (walk)


            Dinner at Michael Jordan’s Steakhouse @ 5:00 0.34 miles from hotel (walk)

            Young Frankenstein @ Hilton Theatre @ 8:00, 0.60 miles from dinner (walk)


            Dinner at The Bull & Bear at Waldorf Astoria @ 5:30 (within hotel, no distance)

            Spamalot @ Shubert Theater in <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />New York @ 8:00, 1.25 miles from hotel (take taxi)

Morning and afternoon meals have not been planned, nor have any activities. 

Possible lunch places consist of:

Hard Rock Café

1501 Broadway - Three
New York, NY 10036
(212) 343-3355


Tavern on the Green

Central Park at West 67th Street,

 New York City, New York, United States, 10023

 Phone: 212.873.3200


Possible activities consist of:

FAO Schwarz Toy Store

767 5th Ave, New York


Largest Macy’s

Macy’s Hearld Square

151 West 34th Street 
New York, NY 10001



Go to Central Park


Go to Rockefeller Center and see the tree


Top of the Rock: Rockefeller Center Observation Deck
Visitors guide to the Top of the Rock, Rockefeller Center Observation Deck including address, directions, facts and more. Visitors to the Top of the Rock Observation Deck can enjoy 360 degree views of New York City from 70 stories up.


Federal Reserve Bank of New York Essential Information
Visiting the Federal Reserve Bank of New York offers visitors a chance to visit the Gold Vault, learn about the Federal banking system and to experience the beautiful ironwork and architecture of the building itself. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York is the largest of the twelve regional Reserve Banks in terms of assets and volume of activity.


Grand Central Terminal
Renovations since its opening in 1913 have turned Grand Central into more than just a hub for transportation -- there are shops, dining and more available to visitors. There are group tours available, as well as free tours for individuals on Wednesdays and Fridays. Find out the details online.


Guggenheim Museum Visitor's Guide
The Guggenheim Museum, designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, is known for its spiral structure and unique museum experience. Displays of modern paintings, sculpture and film rotate throughout the year at teh Guggenheim Museum.


If you have any questions about your upcoming trip, please feel free to contact your travel provider at 304-634-1269, or simply respond to this email.  Thank you for choosing No Choice Travel, we know you don’t really have a choice in who you book your travel with and we appreciate not having to compete with anyone.   

Dear “No Choice Travel”:

Thank you for the itinerary and I’m overjoyed at the possibilities!  I think all sounds wonderful and look forward to my trip with my chaperone with the eagerness of a kid in an oversized, overpriced candy store (which there should be at least one in NY!). 

Please make all necessary reservations as I will expect you to do so for what I am (not) paying you.

Thank you again for the wonderful plans.

Have a lovely day!

==Mrs. Shivel

Mrs. H.K. Shivel

Here at No Choice Travel, we strive to make our cheap non-paying customers happy, that is why we did some research and found this email that outlines the best candy places in NY




Monday, December 10, 2007

(IN)Active Update and MORE!

Yeah.  Gonna kill AOL 

Please, behold my transcript with a rather trapped and fine young chap from AOL help regarding the "Active Update" pop-up that has plagued my laptop for months now:

System System AOLTechVIM has joined this session!
System System Connected with AOLTechVIM
System System Hello, H0LLYK911. Welcome to Live Technical Support. My name is Vic.
Agent AOLTechVIM Pleased to meet you online.
Customer H0LLYK911 Hi Vic !
Agent AOLTechVIM Please go ahead and let me know how I can help you today. I am here to help and will do everything I can to assist you.
Customer H0LLYK911 I'm having a problem with a reocurring pop up from AOL about an "
Active Update" - I do not wish to install this nor to be "Reminded Later" about it. It is causing me to have to constantly flip down and "x" out of it.
Customer H0LLYK911 How can I get it to go away?
Customer H0LLYK911 Permanently!
Agent AOLTechVIM I appreciate the opportunity to handle this for you.
Agent AOLTechVIM Please allow me to explain this further on why is this happening.
Customer H0LLYK911 I think I know why it is happening - I'd really just like it to stop! :)
Agent AOLTechVIM Every now and then, there are some changes being made to serve our members better. The AOL Software Update mechanism eliminates the need for you to manually download software updates.
Agent AOLTechVIM Instead, software updates are downloaded in the background with no impact to your online experience. This update is legitimate. Please click the INSTALL NOW button to get the update.
Customer H0LLYK911 I really don't want to install it. isn't there some way to get rid of something I don't wish to download even if it is Legit and comes from Aol?
Agent AOLTechVIM I apologize but in order to stop these updates is to Install them. There is no way we can disable these updates since it is coming from our AOL Servers.
Agent AOLTechVIM Rest assured that, these updates only affect the functionality of AOL, and not your computer or operating system. The primary reason for Active Update is that as new features are added, it is important that all of our Members are using equal and consistent client versions.
Agent AOLTechVIM AOL designs these service updates to run automatically to make it as easy as possible for you to get the best online experience available. The updates run at the end of your session so that they do not affect your time online in any way.
Customer H0LLYK911 Well, now. That's hardly fair to the customers, is it? i still pay for my AOL and would like to be given options not forced into downloading things I'm not comfortable with! I understand WHY there is a download but not why I have to do it.
Customer H0LLYK911 Is there a way to issue a fomal complaint so that AOL customers like me won't have to be boxed in by pop ups in the future?
Agent AOLTechVIM I understand you have a valid concern. I am sure I would feel the same way if I were in your situation. Rest assured, I will be submitting your feedback to the appropriate department so they can look deeper into this.
Agent AOLTechVIM Please continue with your feedback.
Customer H0LLYK911 Can you please ask them to contact me via email, too? I would really like to get some feedback!
Customer H0LLYK911 Thanks for trying to help - I'd really hate to resort to deleting my AOL accnt since I've been a member for so long!
Agent AOLTechVIM You will not receive a confirmation e-mail regarding this issue. However, I assure you the report will be forwarded to the appropriate technical team to best handle the situation.
Agent AOLTechVIM Please allow updates to complete. This will not damage your computer in any way, but instead would keep you in enjoying the best and most up-to-date service that AOL has to offer.
Customer H0LLYK911 At this point - I'm thinking that downloading it would be more troouble than it's worth. As you understand my concern and the fact that my computer is still mine - being forced into downloads I don't want is just - wrong. On many levels.
Customer H0LLYK911 So, please forward on my disgruntledness and please feel free to type in all CAPS from me! :)
Agent AOLTechVIM I totally understand your situation.
Agent AOLTechVIM You may also want to send a feedback to my supervisor at the screen name
Customer H0LLYK911 I definitely will. I know you've helped me as much as you can in light of this rather unfortunate situation. Thanks and have a good day/eve!
Agent AOLTechVIM It has been my pleasure assisting you.
Agent AOLTechVIM :-)
Agent AOLTechVIM Have a GREAT holiday!
Customer H0LLYK911 YOu too! :)
Agent AOLTechVIM Thank you for visiting AOL® Live Help. If you need assistance in the future, just visit the Live Help area at AOL® Keyword: LIVE HELP or on the Internet, go to
And this is what it looks like:
Oh yeah - it is so ON!   Pregnant girl v. AOL.   My money's on meeeee!
And, a passing story just for the heck of it.   Last night around midnight I emerge from the shower like a chubby drowned rat and fumbled, Velma-like, for my glasses.  Harry, in a fit of activity, threw open the doors to the bathroom and rushed me like a NFL linebacker.   I hopped out of the way while still rummaging around trying to find my glasses, a towel and maybe my dignity.   Harry, looking very proud of himself picked up the large bottle of Drano and, without looking at my horror-stricken face, he poured the foul-smelling and highly toxic goo down the drain.  
"Harry!  I've yet to brush my teeth! Why didn't you wait?!  Sh*t! Now our baby will be born without a head!"   I began to fill dizzy but found my glasses.  
"Well!  I did it!  You asked me to pour the stuff down the drain and I did it!" He looked affronted. 
"I did.  Last week, dude!  I asked you to do it last week and - WHY do you think I (cough, cough) asked YOU to do it?"
He stared at my guiltily, bottle of toxic sludge in his hand.
"Because I'm pregnant!  Geez!"
"Princess," he said.  Okay, fine, he didn't  call me "princess" - he called me something more appropriate.  Something less loving - like something that rhymes with "witch."
"And don't you forget it!"
Which lead to our half-serious, almost-constant fight about how he does everything I ask - 75% of the way done.  
"I do not! I took out the trash for you!"
"And did you put a new bag in?"
"Uh - I emptied the dishwasher!"
"Oh - did you reload it?  And close the cabinets back?"

Friday, December 7, 2007

Meet the Muppets

Last night I left work and drove straight to grandmother's house without going over the hills and through the woods to get there.   Harry's grandmother really wanted to go to this "Make up Party" that was being held at the local mall but there was one problem - she can't drive at night.  So - I was the "obvious" choice. 

We were given our small white Macy's bag and a red card that had various make-up brands along the edges.   Like a parade of very well-dressed trick-or-treaters, the gaggle of girls with eagers faces trolled the counters to find the freebies.  I managed to score about a ton and a half of various perfumes that smell basically the same - badly. 

It was then time for our makeovers.   Meme sat down on the white stool and the consultant immediately began swirling and sweeping foundation on her tiny face.  My consultant was wearing four inch platform heels and four shades of eye shadow.  Her hair, a color not found in nature, was teased, shellacked and sprayed into a helmet-like mass.  

"I just can't see a thing without my glasses on," she said as she slid on a pair of thick spectacles.  She studied a tube of mascara and then took off her glasses, set them aside and began applying powder foundation to my face.   She then plastered on concealor so thick I could feel it crinkled when I faked a smile at my "progress."

Ten minutes later my left eye burned after she had "fixed" the eyeliner and she propped a gold mirror in front of me. "Check out your eyes - aren't they amazing?"  And they were.  It was amazing how much I looked like a fleshy Missy Peggy.  I had purple eyeshadow streaked from my lashes to my eyebrow - to my cheekbones

I tried to gargle my giggles as I nodded at my horrendous reflection. 

"And don't you LOVE the pink lipstick? It's called 'Candy'!" 

My lips looked like the "After" picture of a collegean injection gone wrong.  Pink wax lips waggled in the mirror as my face contorted in a half-grimace, half-bemused state.  

"It's great," I lied through my teeth, the only part of my face spared from the magical makeup Muppet transformation.

"Let's go eat," I commanded as I gathered up my goodies, my coat and my grandmother-in-law who, compared to my Muppet-status looked like an elderly fairy.  Beautiful and glowing while I looked like a heavy-handed clown who had fallen face first into a vat of Crayola markers.  

I left Meme in the waiting area of Olive Garden while I ran to the bathroom to call Harry. 

"How'd it go?" he asked.

"Oh, great!  Meme looks like an eighty year old angel and I look like a chubby whore!" I said simultaneously trying to pee and offend everyone in the adjacent stalls.

"Oh.  You have to send me a picture!"   That's my husband.  Supportive. Loving.  And always knows what to say.  


Tuesday, December 4, 2007

It's a Sad Day for Foodies...

As I'm sitting here on my couch, wrapped snugly in my electric blanket, laptop on my lap, blondie brownie melting in my mouth I try to ignore the tv as "The Biggest Loser" plays on its face.   I consider the irony of the situation but almost lose my grip on the buttery gooeyness of my brownie and avert my attention back to the snack I've painstakingly brought about through a determination of sheer will, a craving the size of  Texas and a dinner that was too healthy for my ever-increasing pregnant self (a salad!  ack!). 

Pregnancy, in itself, is not so bad - so far.  I've only thrown up the once and the nausea has subsided leaving me with cravings for tons of food that I quickly make or order and, once faced with the pile of food, find I either don't want it or can't eat but a little tiny bit of one corner of it. 

In my pre-pregnancy days I could down a "Hot and Ready" pizza from Li'l Caeser's for dinner, follow it up with a half-dozen cookies and wash it down with at least two cherry cokes (and, gee?  Why is my butt so poofy?) Now I'm lucky if I get half of any meal down before I'm crazy full.  It's horrible.   It's a tragedy. I mean, NOW is the time I'm supposed to be able to eat a whole cow if I want to but, horrors of horrors, I can't really stand the thought of eating meat.   I'm like the opposite of Phoebe on "Friends" when she was pregnant and went from vegetarian to carnivore for nine months.  I eat more veggies now than most rabbits.   


Oh - and I have a new addiction:  Paper Mario.

I played seven hours on Saturday while Harry replaced my garage door opener.  Seemed like a fair trade at the time.  And I did THREE whole loads of laundry. WHEW!



hee hee - They're playing "Wii" on Reaper and Sock just called the supposed daughter of Satan "Beazel-babe" - I LOVE THIS SHOW!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

It's a Bird! It's a Plane! No - it's a - Grandma?

Last weekend we went car shopping because the week before I had watched in horror as a much-skinnier-than-me pregnant girl struggled to get out of my car with her sixth month belly.   Eventually she half-wriggled, half-tumbled out on to the pavement.

So we went to buy a new car.  Mine was only four months old so it should've been easy.  Nope.   I went through a Pontiac Torrent GXP that was very difficult to steer because - it  had no power steering.  Who makes a car in this day and age, much less an SUV without power steering!

So we sent it back. 

Then Harry gave me an Escalade to buy him a new GMC Acadia - very pretty and silver. 

When we arrived at the dealership he quickly changed his mind.  He went to go look at a white one that had "better wheels."  They looked the same to me but what did I care - I was getting the majestic Cadillac - barely used!  

His grandmother came with us and settled in to the chair across from me while Harry continued to run around the parking lot looking at vehicles like some kid in an over-priced industrial candy shop.  

I was feeling particularly horrible this day.  My hair was three days into not being washed and my eyes, even at 9:30am, were fighting to close.  My lips were red and my eyes had on a faint coat of mascara, coated by the dim lights of the bathroom.   

His grandmother looked at me with concern.  "Are you just three months along?"  she looked pointedly at my tubby tummy. 

"No, not even. More like ten weeks,"  I replied, tugging my coat closer to my waist.   

"Really?"  She drew in a sharp breath and configured a face of amazement.  "Well, you're really a gainin' aren't you?"

Suddenly, I stood up and pulled my coat off in one fail motion.  Without waiting, I flung the tiny red chair with the tiny grandmother through the plate glass window. 

I took a deep breath before answering her and came back to reality.  

"Actually, I'm exactly the same,"  I said smiling a false smile.

"REALLY?"  she said and made a show of putting on a very shocked expression.  

Suddently, I stood up and pulled my coat...  :)

Later, after we had purchased the car and dropped off the grandmother at the local river - Imean - at her house , I told Harry about it. 

"She didn't mean anything by it..."  he started.

"Yes she did!"  I squealed.  "She's no different than any other old lady out there, just like my grandmother, they tell it like it is!  Feelings be damned."  I laughed as he looked sheepish.   

Somehow, the next day I was the proud owner of a brand new white GMC Acadia with "cool wheels."   

Ya know - for the baby....

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Baby Blues

My original due date was June 13, 2008.  Friday.

My original due date was Friday the frickin' 13th!

Luckily, they have changed that and now my new date is a less scary (just labor-terrifying) June 25th.  

A few weeks ago Harry drove down to see the first ultrasound of lil' - Spawnie (for lack of a real name at this point).  I was warned the day before that this ultrasound was to be - rather invasive.  The technician walked me down the hall, told me to strip from the waist down and to pee in a cup that I would take with me to my doctor's appointment next door.   

Harry sat on the chair next to my stirruped one and I worried that he would tip over as only about a sixteenth of one of his buttcheek's was perched on it.   The technician began moving the weird wand around in my girl oraface reminding me, briefly, of my first sexual experience: pleasureless, uncomfortable and my feet were cold.  

And there he was  - little Spawnie - right on the screen. Heart beating like crazy and looking more than a little like a frog.  

I really hope that similarity goes away, otherwise grade school will be tough.   

"What is that little fluttery thing?" Harry asked, still dangling precariously on the gray seat cushion. 

"THAT'S THE HEARTBEAT!" the nurse and I yelled at him.   I expected to feel happy, shocked, pleased, or, at the very least, protective, of the tiny life that was forming inside me.  However, all I could think was "Well,  huh - it does exist... Would it be wrong to ask it to call me 'Holly' instead of - blech - 'Mama'?"  Would it be wrong if I didn't want to be a mom?  Was it too late to call a do-over?  Can I escape to Disney World and get a job painting all the "It's a Small World" People neon colors instead?   I don't think I'm ready for this.

Yet there he was - little Spawnie - beating his little heart out as if to say "Dude!  Try to ignore me!  I can hang out here for at least seven more months!"

Harry was speechless. 

I was ready to put my pants on.

In the waiting area, I held my bag with my pee while Harry gushed over the grainy black and white pictures of our baby.   I was still in shock but Harry's enthusiasm was more than a little contagious.  

And then I sprung a leak.

I sat in the waiting room holding a bag of leaky pee while others were called back in front of me.  Finally, I walked up to the window, holding the tiny white bag on a non-pee soaked corner.  "Alright - this is my pee - which one of you girls want my urine?"  A silent game of "not it!" happened between the five that were behind the counter.  Finally, one little, and not very happy chick, took my pee. 

The same non-happy nurse escorted us back to see the doctor.   Soon after, a tall man popped through the door and introduced himself as "Dr. C."

After some cordial greetings he asked me about any problems I may be having. 

"My vagina is - smelly," I blurted without even thinking.    I had noticed it soon after I found out I was pregnant - not like fishy - just odd.

Turns out I have a bacterial infection - very common in prego women like me.   He told me to eat lots of yogurt (gag!) and that it should correct itself.  

After my first pap by a male while my hubby watched from the comfort of his own chair, I was ready to go.

"Are you okay?" Harry asked.  

"Well, I've been poked, made to pee in a cup, which leaked on me and I just had to ask my doctor to smell my crotch,"  I yanked on my pants with a ferver.   "I'm ready to go home."

Ah - the joys of pregancy!

What's next?  I'll gain weight and get fat?  Oh wait... 


Friday, November 23, 2007

T-day Massacre

No, not really - but wouldn't that make for a great story?  Like "All was calm until Jim Bob and Bob Joe both reached for the last turkey leg..."  But that's ridiculous anyway because everyone know that rednecks (like me and mine) prefer friend chicken and ham to the "normal" T-day feast of turkey and over-processed gravy slime with the skin (oh lordy me, how I hate gravy skin!).  

However, since Harry is of a more gentile background than I, he and his little granny loaded up their Caddy's with the finest selection of perfectly roasted Turkey breasts, Cranberry chutney, stuffing mounds and even a pretty pumpkin roll and plopped it on my extra-large kitchen table for all to enjoy.  Unfortunately for Harry and his granny, I forgot to tell my sister and cousin to be on their best behavior.  So, in the middle of preparations for the feast to beat all feasts my sister, god bless her sailor-like soul, yells out "SH*T!" becuase she had either burned her hand or sliced her finger or some other minor blood-enducing event that shouldn't have caused the barrage of curses to fly from her over-glossed lips.    She meekly looked at Meme and, in her typical non-pausing speech, said "Imeandarn.  Darn!"

Later, my cousin, hell-bent on a tirade about - I don't know - tires or diamonds or some other product that he could get me " a good deal on" releaseda string of words that have not been put together since biblical times when the first cursewords were invented, or, at the very least, by Cartman on Southpark.  Luckily, Harry's grandmother is a bit hard of hearing and kept saying "What?  What did he say?"  While me and the rest of hillbilly hard-totin' fam just giggled and snorted and slapped our jean-clad knees while Harry was frozen, red-cheeked, trying not to look horrified and laughing in spite of himself.  My grandmother, on the other hand, heard every word and cackled like the Wicked Witch of the West while her eldest grandchild continued to curse like a salor-chiropractic hybrid.  

After dinner, we retired to the couches in my living room where Harry rubbed my feet and I quickly lapsed into my newly semi-permanent state of unconsciousness due to my being  - pregnant.  

HAPPY THANKSGIVING! (me with Gillian - circa 2003)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Little Leper That Could... Notes from a Halloween Book Club

Here is a picture from my Halloween book club where, as usual, I made too much food and had over 100 chicken nuggets left to divvy up after all was said and done.   

We read a book called "The Island" by - some chick.   It wasn't good. No - really - it was downright HORRIBLE.  Although some pretended to like it just to be nice which we all know -I'm not.   So here's my tortured review that I wrote for 'The VoiceboxX' with our group pic to follow:

   “Leprechauns?  That sounds great!  I love Irish lore!”  I exclaimed repeatedly as the girls of my book club looked on in disbelief.  I thought nothing of it, however, since they often look at me in shock (could be horror, but I like to think it’s just good ol’ fashioned shock). 

      “Holly?  I said ‘leper colony’ not ‘leprechauns’ – leper colony,” Cindy said as she held up the book.   A woman’s face looked down, her red lips slightly pursed on the cover.  The Island by Victoria Hislop tells the tale of the island of Spinalonga and its leper-filled history.

      However, the book would’ve fared better if it had actually been all about tiny green men guarding their lucky charms and pots of gold.  

      The Island was not poorly written; in fact most of theprose is beautiful and thought provoking and very intelligent.  So intelligent, in fact, that the author felt the need to triplicate every sentence, slightly changing the words so that her Webster’s thesaurus was money well spent. 

       In Hislop’s twisty tome a family is torn apart when a mother is sent to Spinalonga after being diagnosed with leprosy.  The reader is introduced to tragedy after tragedy as this debilitating disease wreaks havocs on bodies and family infrastructure alike.   Not to spoil anything for the unsuspecting reader but the book ends basically when leprosy is cured.  

      Although touted by book clubs all over, I found The Island to be depressing, predictable and over-written at times.   The parts that should have been more detailed were glazed over and the instances that should have taken just that, an instance, were detailed with such excruciating precision that I found myself wishing the characters a quick demise.  The characters tended to be one-dimensional and too many were the spitting image of their elders.  Even on small islands I am pretty sure that genetics would take over and not every beauty would bear a beauty who in turn spawned a pretty carbon copy of herself.   I had to double-check to make sure the island was, in fact, called Spinalonga and not Kinko’s.             

      The first character that the reader is introduced to by Hislop is that of Alexis, great grandchild of Eleni, the leper.  Alexis is searching to put together the pieces of her mother’s past. To be such an integral part of the story, Alexis is reduced to a whiny secondary figure who is mainly troubled by her superficial boyfriend woes.   We are not drawn into her life and care as little about her as we do about the rest of the family by the story’s end.  

      The Island by Victoria Hislop is a book about a painful, disfiguring disease that dictates a horrible time for those affected by it. 

      Unfortunately for Hislop, so is her book.   

Harsh?  Maybe  - but the book was really not something I'd wish upon my worst literal enemy!


I'm the one in the back, grining like an idiot since my best costume idea was a black lambskin jacket of lamb.   Tiffany, the gypsy, to my left, Summer is Beth Cooper from "I Love You Beth Cooper", followed by Melissa as "Dan" the Valedictorian from "Beth Cooper," Karen as Magdalene from "Lamb" and Krista as Maggie #2 from "Lamb."

We had a great time!  Now, I just need to find time to take down the decorations... Maybe I'll just cover the big spiders in christmas lights!   :)


Saturday, November 3, 2007

Feline Lovin'

As much as I miss my Phoebe, I still know that I can head over to the 'rents and get some primo kitty lovin' from a 19+ year old Siamese named Silver.

Here are some grainy IPhone pics courtesy of Harry.  The paw to the cheek=pure love and annoyance!




Wow.  Could I BE in any more of a funk as of late? Everything makes me mad, sad, livid or weepy.  And then I'm deliriously happy the next minute followed by a quick loop back to Melancholy Holly.  My only joy right now seems to be food. And sleep.   So I  have two joys.  Now - if only I could figure out how to eat in my sleep and exercise right after that way I won't have acompletely rotund physique...

Halloween came and went with Gillian, my niece, dressing up as Minnie Mouse and looking so cute in her black ears with red bows.   Summer dressed as a slut in a cape with a basket.  Or  little red riding hood.  Either way, it totally worked and should her car have broken down in the middle of Rt. 60 there would've been no reason to call me for a rescue.   

I copped out on the costume route and threw on a lambskin leather coat and went as, you guessed it, a lamb.  Yes, not very creative - or warm, in hindsight, but it worked.  :)

After the last of the ninja turtles, lego blocks, witches, fairies and Playboy bunnies (yes - it was disturbing) had dissapated we all went back in my parents home to watch some tv and look over (and pilfer) Gillian's loot.  Anytime we saw something that looked good we'd say "Ohhh -Gilly, this has nuts, I better eat it for you!"  Yes it was like taking candy from a baby and yes it was still fun.   A few mintues had passed before Summer sprang up to make her boyfriend/beau/finace a hot chocolate.   She drifted into the kitchen and a few second had passed when we heard a BANG!


We all stared at each and sat perfectly still as Summer's calls for help became more high-pitched.   Brian finally meandered in and got a mop.  As he dutifully began scrubbing the floor my dad walked in. 
"What's going on?  Why is the milk in the fl-"  he said and scooped up the half full gallon of milk which immediately whooshed on to the floor in a cascade of white.  

He hurried quickly out of the kitchen with Summer hot on his heels.  I could hear my sister's beau grumbling from behind the mop as the Adkins family was reunited in peals of laughter and giggles.  

It was a good night.  

 (pre-Minnie Gilly)

She's getting so big.  She'll be five this July.  FIVE! That's like - a little girl's age!  

That's all for now! Harry just got back with my Orange Soda that I was craving and a little Snickers just for me.  I'm happy now and un-funky.  But check back in five minutes. 


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Saturday, October 27, 2007


Well, my Halloween party has come and gone and I couldn't be happier.  There were six of us in attendance and that was plenty for me.   We had two Mary Magdaline's from Christopher Moore's "Lamb" , Beth Cooper the cheerleader and a valedictorian from "I Love you, Beth Cooper" by Larry Doyle a wayward gypsy and me, the girl in the leather coat insisting that she was, in fact, dressed as a lamb.   

It's funny what happens when women get together from all different backgrounds and just gab.   Here's a list of topics that were touched on tonight:  penicillin, yeast infections, c-sections, latest books read, evil ex-husbands, homewreckers, cheese, brie, apricot jelly, cocaine, meth, crazies in general, McDonalds, husbands, and last, but not least - big hot dogs.  

And, for my last parting thought before I head off to dreamland, DUMBLEDORE WAS GAY????!!!  It's not that I care much what the sexual preference of the headmaster was, that has never been my concern, it just seems like such a concrete bombshell to drop AFTER the last book was published.  I mean, c'mon, couldn't she have alluded to this fact at some point in the last book when she was talking about his relationship with the great evil wizard Grendelwald (I may have spelled his name wrong- sorry).  I just don't think it was something that needed to be answered in definite.  We could've speculated on it - or not needed to.  I always thought of Dumbledore to be very much like George Clooney or Ryan Seacrest.  Ya know - asexual?

With that last rambling rant I bid you adeau since I've been off the caffeine for a week now and can't seem to stay awake long enough to do much of anything anymore!  


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Lunch? Never heard of it...


I came home for lunch today and noticed that my parents were parked in my driveway.

No, pardon me, they were parked IN THE MIDDLE of my driveway.

Heaving a sigh I pulled into the grass, trying not to plummet over the slight incline and then headed through the garage and into the kitchen.

"What'd you bring for lunch?" My dad yelled (he has one volume setting - really frickin' loud).

"Uh, nothing," I said.  Mom emerged from the bathroom and smiled.   "I have some leftover cheese and crackers from my 'Wii and cheese' party last night-"

"Okay, just give me that grape pop in the fridge then," he said settling down at my table and waiting to be served like a king. 

"Uh, okay."

I started gathering up some grapes and various colored cheeses that were sitting in my fridge.  I pulled out the little bit of chicken salad that I had left and plopped it all on the table. 

Mom meandered over with a napkin.

Noticing I had just under thirty minutes to eat and get back to work I started slicing the cheese (yes, you may notice that I didn't say 'cut the cheese' - I know ya'all too well for that one).

Every slice I sliced was gobbled by father figure.  I sat back and waited for him to pick up the chunk of mild cheddar and stuff it into his two-front-teeth missing mouth.   He then proceeded to tell me, again, about the first era of the Bionic people.   With his mouth full.   

<sidenote:  Why is it that when your doorbell rings at 7pm and you rush to answer it and find a cute boy standing on your porch that positively reeks of all that is Patrick Dempsey, oh why, oh why does he turn out to be your best friend's beau??? hee hee!>

"Yes, daddy, I know.  It will be stupid if she gets a dog and they make it bionic, too.  Yes, you are right," I say as mom keeps her head down while she giggles over her brie.  

It's at this point that my father, almost simultaneously, scoops out the last of the chicken salad and eats the majority of the pineapple which he then puts the lid on and pushes it to the side as if to say "that will be all of that."

So I sit, nibble onmy tiny crum of dairy and wait for the clock to tick to 12:45.   Stomach rumbling, I put away the stuttered meal and head to the bathroom in my bedroom.   "This one's off limits until after your book club!  Tell that husband of yours not to even so much as pee in this one!  It was all over the seat!  And the floor!" cried my mother as I gave her a kiss and headed out the door.

That's when it hit me.

A powerful smell so strong that my nose hairs felt singed, my eyes watered and I felt as if I may lose consciousness.  


"Well, yes, of course!"  She looked affronted. And then grinned.  "After I put it on the floor, I did!"

Bouncing off the walls as the blackness descended on me I could hear dad yelling at me, "Hey - I need some dvds to watch! What can I watch?"

I rushed out the door, pawing at the garage door opener to try to make it to freedom and fresh air. 

And that, my dear friends, is how I spent my lunch.  Being starved.   Spittled on.  And gassed.  

A tale of more horror than most Halloween stories.   No headless horseman could compare to Ma and Pa Adkins and their ability to make even a simple lunch into a blog-worthy event.


Oh - and I'm not supposed to tell you this but apparently Harry almost got to see a brawl at work today between a co-worker and another, presidently, gentleman.

"Did you try to break it up?" I asked.

"Hell no!  I was trying to figure out how to get up and run without anyone noticing!" 

Sorry, hon, but that was too funny not to be told. 


Monday, October 15, 2007

Evil Husbandless Duo

Cindy and I are often left home alone. Our husbands go off on grand adventures while we are left stewing and doing laudry. 

We'd had enough.

Introducing - the "EVIL HUSBANDLESS DUO!" 

That's me on the left with the killer handbag of, ya know, evil stuff.  And Cindy is on the right with the laptop bag - she being the brains of duo.  We spend our husbandless days doing mean things like rearranging artfully arranged GI Joe battle armour and switching  underwear tags (S-L, L-S) just to cause mayhem!    


McD's and Oopsies.

"Who was that?" Harry asked me as he got up to toss the hamburgers and soda scraps into the trash bin.

"Derek. He was friends with Jonathan, the guy I dated in high school..."  I kept an eye on Gillian as she streaked through the inner pipes of the McDonald's playplace.

Harry said something I didn't quite hear so I answered, "Yeah, he was HUGE!"  Now, I'm not sure what possessed me to, number one, admit that my ex-boyfriend was hung like a miniature elephant, and two, to do it in the middle of McDonald's kid-friendly habitat!  I was horrified.  And, admittedly, pretty cracked up at my admission. 

We then took Gillian home where she played V-smile while we played our version of "Stuff on my Cat" - "Stuff on someone else's Kid":

Friday, October 5, 2007

I know. I suck.

I know that I've been a bad blogger as of late.  I haven't updated in FOREVER!  but I apologize and bring you the latest from the land of Holly:  MARRIED PEOPLE CRUSHES.

Married People Crushes (or MPC, for short) are those crushes we develop on the opposite sex after we become betrothed to another.  These crushes are harmless, fun and non-threatening since a Married Person is off the market and the other is just, well, they're just fun to look at.

On Wednesday I attended a job fair at MU as part of my recruiting duties for my new job.  After hopping into the shuttle van the slight boy behind the wheel said "Alright. I'm just going to park for a bit, see if anyone else needs a ride."

Bestill my hornily beating heart - he was British!  A man from England - studying in WV? The Twilight Zone theme pulsed through my brain.

I instantly started drooling and babbling incessantly about everything from Wii games to, God help me, Harry Potter.  By the time I hopped out of the van a mere ten minutes later, I was hankerin' a full-blown MPC on this bespeckled Brit.

"Well, what's your name?" I asked since he expressed interest in that lovely accent of his in a possible internship in the future (or at least I convinced myself that this was the reason I was asking).

"Luke," he said, the vowel enlongating sexily, "as in Skywalker!"  A boy from London AND obsessed with video games and Star Wars.  As my smile stretched to near painful proportions I fell out of the car and made a mental note to apologize to my wonderful hubby for the massive MPC I had developed on a grad student who was driving a van as part of his GA duties.  

But as my co-worker and I climbed the familiar stairs of Marshall University's Student Center my heart dropped as I saw that we were stationed - next to the Marines. 

Hello gorgeous men in uniforms!  

It was a good day. 


Sunday, September 30, 2007

Bagged Lunch

I just realized that I never told you why sis was under that bag a few posts ago. 

Well, we were all sitting on the back porch eating Jim's Spaghetti bbq's (Jim's is a local favorite and their sauce is to die for and a highly guarded secret) but were having a hard time eating for the attacking bugs.

Every time sis would start to bite her sandwich three of four flies would hover and land on the about to be bitten portion.  She'd shriek and pull back and then try again.  We, of course, being loving family, laughed hartily at her expense as we dined on our fly-free food.

Finally, I tossed a Kroger bag at her and suggested she put it over her head.  

To my surprise, and merriment, she did!

So - the answer was "to keep the bugs off" and Cindy won an autographed picture of my dear sis in a bag.   That is, as soon as Summer forgives me for posting her plastic'd mug on the internet! 


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Halo, Goodbye

       Not many people are blessed with the gift of incredible foresight.  To be able to predict events and happenings before the actual occurrence is an amazing feat of tuned second sight.  However, being able to predict when a loved one shall be lost is a rare and rather frightening gift.  How do I know?  Well, you see, dear VoiceboxX readers, I know exactly when I will lose my husband.   <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

        On September 25th, as the night deepens and the witching hour approaches, my dearest shall be lined up against a wall ready to be shot at, hunted and worse.  At 12:01am Harry shall leave this world and enter another; a universe full of unspeakable evil, pointy-faced aliens, rechargeable body armor and endless, bloody “Slayer” modes. Yes, as the clock rolls from night to morning, my husband will be standing in a Barboursville parking lot with a bust of the “Master Chief” held high above his “I don’t need a haircut” head.   Halo 3, after four years of anxious waiting, is being released to the sweaty and thumb-cramping masses.  One-by-one our menfolk will flock to their respective man-caves with tiny plastic cases (or giant helmets) clutched in their sweaty hands.  

        For two or three days I will be expected to deliver food and hyper-caffeinated beverages (tinted red and labeled as “Halo edition”) to the cave door.  I can rest assured knowing that romantic notions and tender conversations will be replaced with grunts of recognition and the occasional bursts of game-related fury.  “I got you, man!  I totally got you! Shenanigans!”

        A few nights before the Halo 3’s much anticipated release I wandered into the midst of a pre-game playing session.  My significant other, nestled in his over-sized leather “Man Chair,” was in a heated war with two of his good buddies.   I struggled to follow their high tech conversation:

        “What the- Where’d you get a grenade launcher?”

        “Where are you?”

        “Agh! You just shot me in the [buttocks]!”

        “Agh!  You just shot me in the [buttocks]!”

        “Ah HA!  Killed you!”

        “You committed suicide.”

        “Yeah, but I took you down with me!”

        Being the only feminine presence in the room I attempted to offer helpful advice.  “Hey sweetie – you two combined have as many kills as ‘Rage of Zeus’!”

        “Thanks,” Harry said as his green armored on-screen man erupted in a cloud of smoke courtesy of Zeus’ aforementioned grenade launcher.

        “Ha!  It’s funny to watch you get hurt – kinda like when you do it in real life and it totally cracks me up!” I cackled.  I may be a loving wife but have still not managed to figure out how not to erupt into giggles when my husband bangs his head on an open cabinet door.  I’m sure it hurts – but that doesn’t make it any less funny.

        Harry’s friend is struck down by a sniper bullet courtesy of the virtually indestructible “Zeus.”  He looks at me and then back at the screen.  “Kinda mean, ain’t she?”

        “Yep,” the love of my life said, and then “Die!  Die!  Why won’t you- Oh. I died.”

        Giggling, I left the men to their 2-D destruction thinking that, if nothing else, I was at least forewarned.  With bated breath and barely concealed sniggers, I will anticipate the coming of the alien invasion and the guaranteed disappearance of my sweet husband into a land of cold landscapes, evil invaders and the occasional death threat of his arch-nemesis, “Rage of Zeus.” 



Monday, September 24, 2007

Feeling Disconnected?

Comcast is, as one of my new co-workers stated, the devil.

All weekend I've been without net access?

I had to do things the ol' fashioned way.  I had to call to look up movie showtimes.  I had to, the horrors, look up a number in the phone book and finally I had to sit through an hour of a grinning and sadistic Ryan Seacrest in order to find out what happened with Britney's custody hearing!

Oh - the HORRORS!

Hopefully I'll get up and running by tonight.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Now - Summer Comes in Her Very Own Custom-made BAG!

Okay, instead of telling ya'all why my sister is eating with a Kroger bag over her face, I shall let ya'all ponder.  Whomever gets closest to the right answer (without being related to me, that is) will get, I dunno, an autographed photo of Ms. Baggerhead here!

So - guess away!