Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Looking Heavenward

"The sky is the daily bread of the eyes."
-- Emerson

Just working hard to remain ever-grateful for all my blessings --

And continuing to ask for your loving, healing thoughts and prayers for our friend, and our god-daughter, Andi --

.. Davi & Mark

Monday, December 29, 2008


"Love begins at home,
and it is not how much we do ...
but how much love we put in that action."

-- Mother Teresa

Isn't that a beautiful reminder that it's not WHAT we do, but HOW we do it? If we offer up all our acts {yes, even housework!} with love & thanksgiving for all the blessings we have -- isn't that what makes it all better?

I am a terrible housekeeper. It's not a secret. So I hereby vow to do my housework & household chores with a strong measure of THANKSGIVING in the coming new year. {Resolution Number One, we'll call it}

I do love to cook. Trouble is, I do not cook for Mark and I on a regular basis -- rather, we put something together for ourselves when it suits us -- not a very "bonding" way to exist, I have to admit. I am a good cook. Another non-secret. And I want to publicly note here that I am SO inspired by the "what's cooking in our kitchen" posts that friend Ann D puts on her blog -- WOW, does she do it up right! So I hereby vow to PREPARE A MEAL {whether breakfast, lunch, or dinner - it doesn't matter} for my husband in the coming new year - at least every other day. {Resolution Number Two, we'll call that one}

I very much enjoy attending Mass at our Church. Do I make sure to get to Mass at least once a week? NO, I do not. My spiritual health suffers for it, I believe. So I hereby vow to make attending Mass more of a priority in my life. {Resolution Number Three, we'll call this one}

That's it for me, for now, regarding my New Year's Resolutions ... oh, of course I have all the other usual suspects: lose weight / get in shape / make time to WALK, alone or with Rocky / ALL THAT STUFF. I also intend to continue on with getting a handle on the migraines I've lived with for 47 years --

More on all the "healthy" matters later, though.

Right now, Mark and I need to get to our dinner and we are trying to get a hospital visit in with our god-daughter, Andi, who is again in serious condition and fighting for her life.

In the big scheme of things, doesn't it sound oh-so-easy to just BE GRATEFUL for everything we DO have, and to just stop grousing about the rest?

-- D.

Monday, December 22, 2008

A Few of My Favorite Things

It's MY birthday, so I get to post about a few of my favorite things ... and in case that phrase isn't ringing any bells for you, the movie SOUND OF MUSIC is on that list. ;-)

Rain. I love the rain. As a youngster, it ALWAYS rained for me on my birthday. Seriously. And today, guess what? RAIN, on my half-decade birthday. Wow.

if that is not the most romantical dance photo ever, I don't know what is ... my goodness !!!

Gene Kelly - and all talented artistic dancers. And what's better than Gene Kelly in that musical "Singin' in the Rain" ???

And speaking of gifted athletes ... this heart-filled Thoroughbred filly, RUFFIAN, has always had a large piece of my heart. She has a heartbreaking story, though, which I will not go into here - if you don't know it, and you care to, you can google her and read it for yourself. Me, I prefer to remember Ruffian as the valiant beauty you see here:

An old-fashioned, blowsy, ENGLISH COUNTRY GARDEN, complete with thatched-roof cottage. I have to say, THIS is my storybook dream house & garden. Isn't it darling?

And FREESIA blossoms. They smell like heaven, they remind me of Mark's and my favorite place, Deetjen's Big Sur Inn {'cause they usually have cut freesia on the tables there}, and they naturalize in the garden. Ah, freesia.

So those are just a random few of my favorite things.
And the blessing of good friends and the love of a great family. Don't mind me - I'm just waxing nostalgic - but then, I get to do that - it's MY birthday !!!
-- D.

At last ...

... I'm FIFTY !!!

Happy birthday to me - as was sung to me last night at a surprise birthday party for me at my sister and brother in law's home. Details to follow, with party pics. For now ...

A most heartfelt THANK YOU to all who have sent me birthday cards and presents, and your well wishes - and to my family, for pulling off the Surprise of the Half-Century.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

You Win Some ...

... and you lose some. But it all works out in the end.

"Grand" Trevor's travel-ball team had a great tournament weekend going - they won both games yesterday, and were looking good going into today's Game Three towards the Championship. With a 3-1 game, though, things took a turn and The Other Team ended up winning, 4-3. But that's baseball, isn't it? You win some. You lose some. Always remember: there's no crying in baseball {usually}. Our AZTECS played good ball and they have much to be proud of. I know that I'm proud of 'em, but am I biased?

Trevor at a tourney in November {he caught all 4 games that weekend ... this is a dedicated team player!}

In other realms, the same rule applies. You win some; you lose some. But what some might consider a "loss" turns out to be such a blessing.

If you don't know by now that I have worked for, and strongly support the work of, Canine Companions for Independence (CCI), then you have not been perusing the left-hand-column of this very blogspot. When a dog being raised for CCI doesn't make it in Advanced Training, they are released from the program {although some do go on to other working dog organizations to pursue a different kind of working life - Search & Rescue, Guide Dogs, DEA work, etc}. Right now, our friends raised a pup for CCI, TARA, and she is currently 'exploring her options' in Search and Rescue work - I don't know anyone who knows Tara who wouldn't wish to get lost, just so Tara could find them {okay, so her trainer actually said it first - but it's SO true}.

The stories that I so enjoy are the ones about the Release Dogs that -- do therapy work. Take LANDIS for instance. This was the biggest, handsomest pup I'd ever come across, and having CCI name him for a man who holds a special place in our hearts was so exciting. LANDIS {the dog} was raised by a fabulous puppy-raising couple in Arizona, Amanda & John. When LANDIS was released from CCI, he returned to Arizona, and he is now a certified Therapy Dog, and he's working in a hospice program. I am so deeply happy for any and everyone that has known and will know this dog. LANDIS stole my heart, and I believe he's continuing to steal more of the same.
I told you he was a big puppy!

and he's grown into a big handsome Big Dog now ...

Then there are the Release Dogs that just ... do their own kind of 'therapy' work. Take for instance RONIE. She loves her mom, and her mom loves her. Her mom loves her so much, in fact, that she has created the most amazing scrapbook ALL ABOUT RONIE, in which Ronie is featured in her vast array of bandanas -- she has one for every occasion! But the photo that I am so taken with is this one ... it's of Ronie enjoying a Cold Winter's Nap under a blanket, which she slept under an entire night! Lyn says Ronie goes to bed all tucked in - and wakes up in just the same spot. What a love she is. Ronie brings a smile to my face every time I get to see her - she is such a delight.
Ronie all tucked in ...

Not enough time here to go into the CCI dogs that have touched my life with the ways they've enhanced, altered, changed, improved, deeply moved the life of a person with a disability - their Graduate {person} and all who know him or her. That's for another post entirely.
Happy Sunday to you all,

Friday, December 19, 2008


That is how many Christmas cards we're mailing out today. There are some straggling addresses still needed, but not many ... the 2008 Christmas Card Project is coming to a close.


Now for the Shopping. From us, and for my dad, Frank. {I must be the biggest Elf on the planet, next to Will Farrell}.

Happy Friday of the Christmas Season, friends and family. Gotta run!

-- D.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Closet Progress

Okay, so my sweet sister tells me that all this "being accountable" to my readers {that would include YOU} includes -- keeping on with the keeping on with the clutter clearing posts, and the closet-reorganization-process posts, and all that stuff.

I admit it - THIS was the closet "before"

and this is the "during" process, yesterday

So here you go - the Hall Closet has been restored to its original intended use, that of a Gift & Gift Wrap storage space.

and these 3 are the "after" shots !!!

And the Big Blue Tote, formerly referred to as the Big Blue Behemoth, until my friend Lori suggested I call it a "tote", thereby rendering it more my FRIEND ;-) {anyone who knows me, knows that I am the biggest BAG LADY ever -- gift bags, shopping bags, PURSES, tote bags -- no matter, I love 'em and I collect 'em}.

So the GINORMOUS blue recycling "bin" is now one of my newest best friends -- My Blue Tote.

Photos to prove the CLOSET is done {and therefor, I am one big step closer to being allowed to have my family here on Christmas Day}, and all that's left is ... my office. YIKES !!!

Gotta post the pics, and then get to work ... there are still Limoncello Labels to be put together with Victoria, and the Christmas Cards to be labeled, signed, postage-stamped, and mailed.

Here comes Santa Claus, here comes Santa Claus ...

- D.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


My life is like a mini-moment taken right out of "Napoleon Dynamite".

I swear, it's true.

On the phone with our e-mail provider and they give me - I'm not kidding - a "temporary password" that includes the word: TALON.

I just about fell out of my rolling chair.

Not to mention, I'm apoplectic with how much time they're taking -- we've been on the phone 25 minutes now, and they CANNOT tell me what the problem is.

Jeremy was so sweet, but WHAT THE HECK?! This can't be happening ...

THERE, Karyl, is my RANT for the evening.

-- D.

Just for Jen & Noelle - ROCK STAR

It's ALL about the Rock Star this morning:

me 'n Rock Star, 2007

Rocky loved our kitty, Mischief ... we are still sad about M's disappearance in March 2007

I know how much Jennifer loves our Rock Star, so here's a blog post JUST FOR YOU, Jen !!!

And nobody / no family loves our Rocky more than we do, except for Noelle's family - Noelle is Rocky's "other mother" -- they still refer to him as 'Tugboat', 'cause he WAS the biggest pup in his litter.

Rocky loves boys - Noelle's son was "his" boy before we brought him home {Rocky, not Matthew!} .... so Rocky immediately bonded with Trevor !!! NOTICE Rocky's ears - they're still tipped and not upright. Awwwwwwwwww, how cute.

{see, dedicated & regular readers get to pick their fave subject and I'll post about it ... of course, Rocky IS also one of MY favorite subjects -- I just try to refrain from posting about him all the time, in order to hold the attention of the rest of you ...}

And this is Rocky, a couple months ago, playing with his GIRLFRIEND {and yes, we can refer to her as such}, CORAL. Coral is the Rattie that inspired Mark and I to research and select this lovable, fun-loving, charming breed for our family pet. Thank you, Coral -- it's been quite an experience, living with Rock Star. And thanks to Tom for introducing us to Coral ...

That's all, Rocky fans. I have to dream up a more wide-spread, interesting, possibly seasonal topic for my next post!

-- D.

Monday, December 15, 2008

SPAM blogspot commentary

Okay, my friend Karyl told me today that I am WAAAAAY nice on my blogspot and that she'd been keeping an eye out for rants on topics such as Outta Control Car Alarms, stuff like that.

Okay, so here's one for you, Karyl.

SPAM blogspot comments.

Just got my first one, and I am so mad -- the only way to control them is to go back to me "moderating" all comments, which means I approve / disapprove them. Not a big deal, but heck, it's that one more thing to "manage".

What really frosts me {if you will pardon the seasonal pun} is that this yahoo, whoever they are, left some bogus "comment" full of Air Jordan this and Air Jordan that - complete with stupid LINKS to crap. Yes, I said "CRAP".

So the only way I can preserve my sanity and maintain the sanctity of my blogspot on THAT LAST POST, the one about 'Tis the Season' -- is to DISALLOW and HIDE the comment this toad left tonight.

Sorry folks.

-- D.

'tis the SEASON ...

.. for all wonderful sorts of things!

Like working indoors all day on filing, and labels, and baking, and stoking the wood fire in the living room. YES, we had to burn that thing all day long, it was so chilly and damp here today. A steady rain is a blessing, and with it, the first all-day-fire of the season. YAY !!!

I've been snapping photos, getting our Christmas Card mailing list {labels} finalized, even got a batch of Chocolate Chip Scones baked off this afternoon ... in time for a quick tasting of the homemade LIMONCELLO that Victoria and I made -- four of us took nice little shots of it, and I am here to tell you {yes, we all survived!} that it ROCKS -- our limoncello R O C K S !!! We thought it would need to "settle" into it's bad self, but NO WAY -- it's great right now.

As for the distribution of said Limoncello, if you've been REALLY Really really good to us this year ... you might just get a little bottle. If not, then all I can say is "better luck next year!" -- AND -- look at it this way: maybe Limoncello is not your "thing", and maybe we've done you a favor 'cause it COULD BE your "thing", and then think of the trouble you'd be in. Know what I mean?

Rocky received his first CHRISTMAS CARD via E-MAIL today ... photo here of his friend Cashew, who we're NOT allowed to refer to as his "girlfriend" -- she's JUST a friend -- but take a look:

So MY Photos of the Day include ...

this charming hearth-side scene of Rocky staying toasty all morning in the living room {his L L Bean coat with sherpa lining and waterproof outer layer has not yet been ordered - but he wants Kelly Green; he told me}
So I go from the above scene to THIS horror in our garage a few hours later ... it's not the first time a leak has commenced in the garage, originating, we believe, from the deck directly above OR even from the edge of the house where it meets the deck -- the HOT MOP GUY had to come back out once already to "repair" the problem -- looks to me, and to anyone with 200/200 vision, that it DID NOT WORK ??? what do you think?

But ah well, off to run an errand ... WAIT ... what's this? The "steady soft rain" all day that began in the night must have done more for the community than we thought! WHOA !!! Oh well, it's nothing unusual - whenever we have rain, THIS happens at the bottom of our Lane -- it just takes a quick call to the Public Works &/or Fire Department folks and they kindly come out and PUMP all that extra water away and sandbag around the drain.

TODAY they came out in record time. No, really. I put in the call at 2:10 pm, and by the time I got back to the Lane at 2:45, here they were, working away and just about done. NICE !!!

Oh, and DON'T even ask about our GE Monogram Refrigerator. The saga that is turning into a MINI-SERIES continues ... seriously, since the first week of September we've been battling an erratic Freezer & Fridge. We're considering an Amana French Door job for our wish list! We're SO over the Monogram ... but I do have a new very best friend at GE - her name is Kyra - she calls me every three days now, like clockwork, and I am SO impressed. She is the ONLY GE rep that's ever taken the initiative to CARE.

Like I said - DON'T ASK. ;-) But if you haven't gotten down on your knees and properly thanked your WORKING appliances lately, I urge you to do so - now. I'm headed to the laundry room to thank our Maytag Neptune w/d, because we love them so and they treat us right.

-- Davi

Friday, December 12, 2008


I just love this time of year, especially when children get that twinkle in their eye over The Big Guy ... Santa Claus.

Waiting for photos from Daughter # 1 of the other "grands" with Kris Kringle, but for now, I offer you this:

And by the way ... to all of you who have family near & far & nation- or world-wide ... BE IN TOUCH WITH THEM, please, during this holiday season. You have no idea the stories I hear, and the things I have experienced ... when it comes to family and the holiday season. It can be just wrenching, folks not hearing from a sister or aunt, father or nephew ...

REACH OUT and BE IN TOUCH with them all, warts and all.

Thank you,

DAH, aka Mrs. Claus
{ooh, that reminds me - we're overdue to begin watching our Jim Carrey fave, THE GRINCH - and the Will Farrell classic, ELF}

Thursday, December 11, 2008


On my way out to meet a friend for dinner, and with just a turn, I was able to capture both the SUNSET ...

and the MOONRISE ...

Life is good!
-- DAH

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

No, I didn't fall off the planet ...

... just been busy!

I will soon post an update on the Victoria & Davi OPERATION LIMONCELLO project.

Suffice it to say that tonight, we are much relieved and very very very happy with the results of our "finishing off" process and the bottling of the hooch. Er, limoncello. It is the most radiant shade of YELLOW, it's like sunshine & lemons in a bottle. Photos WILL follow. {and by the way - it no longer smells like jet fuel ... no, really, it's got a fresh scent - and NO, it doesn't smell like lemon Pledge, either}

And my Christmas Card Project -- all 120 of them -- are complete! Woo hoo.

All told, last night was a magnificent finale to two major holiday projects with my dear friend and, fortunately, our neighbor ... Victoria.

Right now, Mark's got a house full as he entertains the Board & Staff of the local lagoon conservancy that he serves as a board member. The kitchen smells heavenly with all their contributions, and they all seem to be having a nice time -- so I stepped away to get a quick blog post in.

-- D.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Is anyone out there bored with the blog posts I'm doing about all my CLUTTER CLEARING tasks? IF SO, just say the word and I can stop. NOT stop the clearing, but I can stop the postings.

FOR THIS MORNING, though, I just have to post the major PROGRESS I made yesterday in my office:

yes, I got the Big Blue Behemoth near-filled -- and that box of magazines? Those are to be dropped off at the local hospital ER waiting room
YAY !!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Not a Creature was Stirring ...

... well, maybe a little bitty MOUSE !!!

Just went down to be sure the garage was closed up {it was, for once}, and heard a tiny rustling sound over near Mark's "bike bench" --

He's got a box attached to the wall there, with cyclist's GOOP and power bars and the like just waiting for him to grab them before a ride.

Do I have news for him!

Not only are there little ants all over the stuff, but he's got a furry little friend partaking of his bounty each night.

See photo herein as proof.


-- Davielle

We Must Know Both our Possibilities & Our Limitations

"It's not our disadvantages or shortcomings that are ridiculous, but rather the studious way we try to hide them, and our desire to act as if they did not exist."

-- Giacomo Leopardi

Call me blessed, I guess, 'cause I have a spouse who is deliberate, persistent, and regular about pointing out to me just what my 'disadvantages & shortcomings' are ...

No matter how studious I get, trying to hide from who and what I am, have no fear. There's always my husband to bring me back to front and center, with no holds barred.

-- D.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Oh, I get by ...

... with a little help from my friends. GONNA TRY, with a little help from my friends.
It's true ... I challenged my friend Ann to a CLUTTER CLEARING PROJECT yesterday - and I have to admit, ROUND ONE goes to ... ANN !!! Visit her blog to see her BEFORE and AFTER shots ... so you can compare them to ... mine.

In all fairness, I promised Ann I would photograph MY messy desk & library table -- those were my stated objectives yesterday. I, however, carried mine over into TODAY and I'm still not finished.
First, my Library Table - on Wednesday:

and my Library Table, this evening:

Next, my computer space, on Wednesday:

and that same spot / pile - this evening:

and NO, I did not just squish the paperwork BENEATH the book - no, I did not.
But boy, is the RIGHT SIDE of my desk ... a bit of an eyesore still:

anyone got a match?!

Oh well, that's what a good CHALLENGE is all about, right? Every contest must have a winner.
Ann is THIS week's Clutter Clearing Challenge Winner -- hands down. BRAVO, Ann - you did it!
I have to say, though, I am thrilled with the progress I have made -- because not only was I working to clear the table & my desk, but I have a huge recycling trash bin right here in my office. Don't believe me? PHOTO TO PROVE THAT WHAT I AM SAYING IS TRUE:

The Big Blue Behemoth ... and the Box of Magazines for the Doctor's Waiting Room

If anyone else out there has some CLUTTER that needs CLEARING, we invite you to join our Challenge Group. {or in MY case, make that just "challenged" !!}

You know, if my husband's ex (wife) wasn't such an incredibly neat & tidy housekeeper, I wouldn't have so much angst over this ... stuff. And Jen reads my blogs, so it's not like it's a big secret in our very extended family -- we know each other's strengths - AND weaknesses. LOVE YA, Jen, and I love that you read my blog so regularly. ;-)
{of course, there's still the OTHER thing my husband still admires about his ex ... her physique ... dang ... it's hard to catch a break sometimes! but that's a whole 'nother story}

Here's hoping Mark will stop raining on my HAPPY parade {you know, the Parade where I pretend to be Princess Magpie and I make Christmas cards - THAT is my Happy Place lately}, and that he'll "get" how much progress this really is for me.
-- D.
if you want to visit me at my HAPPY PLACE, go to http://iamprincessmagpie.blogspot.com

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

If You Hang COOKIES on your Christmas Tree ...

... will you get ants?!

We struggle almost year-round with ant armies at our house.

I'd love to bake some gingerbread cookies like the one I received today from the Food Network {follow this link} ...

And I'd love to poke those holes in the cookie before baking, and I'd love to sprinkle that crystal-sugar on top, and I'd love to put grosgrain ribbon through each cookie when they're cooled ... and I would LOVE to hang them on our Tree this year.

Imagine the scent of fresh TREE and fresh-baked GINGERBREAD COOKIES ... all mingled together. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. {that's a huge sigh, in case you didn't know}

BUT I do not want to sit down, put the lights on, get the music or a movie going, and look over to see .... an ant army marching along the branches of our tree !!! Let alone, eating those cookies.

PLEASE POST A COMMENT -- I really want to know if it's a good idea to hang cookies on the tree.

-- Davi


I just posted A COLLAGE A DAY by Randel Plowman on my other blogspot ... you know, I AM PRINCESS MAGPIE ... that one.
http://iamprincessmagpie.blogspot.com/ {just in case you forgot how to find it !!!}

I am SO taken with what this artist in Kentucky is doing ... creating a 4 x 4" collage EVERY DAY, and posting it to http://www.acollageaday.blogspot.com/
... for all to see.

I don't want to duplicate POSTS today, but if you have not visited MY other blog, please do and take a look at a very neat little piece by Randel called "The Secret". {it has to do with America's favorite pasttime ... baseball!}

Oh, okay -- here's ANOTHER little collage by Randel for you to get a peak at, in the upper left corner of this post ... it's called BIRD RAPTURE and I just love it.
-- Davielle

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


How much do you love year-round baseball? In our family, it's a new phenom ... Trevor used to play Little League, and then for a number of years, added Winter Ball to the calendar. But this TRAVEL BALL league stuff -- which goes all year 'round -- makes it an every-week-there's-baseball-somewhere world for us!

A couple weekends ago, we saw Trevor and his AZTECS play here in our town, at night, and it sure was fun. A nice way to end a Sunday.

This most recent weekend, there was a TOURNAMENT in Poway, and I went out on Saturday for their first game, and again on Sunday for their first game. THEY WON BOTH OF THOSE.

a couple of the AZTECS {and Trevor's!} biggest fans ... T's mom and sister

On both days, though, they valiantly lost their second games, putting them out of the running for the Championship Game of the weekend.

I know the AZTECS were disappointed, but with player injuries, illnesses, and some being away on holiday for Thanksgiving, our Trevor was catching for ALL their games, and they were down a few pitchers, too. That makes for a little sore, and at times, a LOT tired team, I would think. {but you know The Rule: THERE'S NO CRYING IN BASEBALL !!! these kids are tough - no whining from them} photo - Trevor, catching

Trevor made several attempts to steal second base {and eventually, he did just that} -- this, at FIRST BASE, making sure he is SAFE before the baseman gets that ball {which you can see in the photo!}

I'm happy to say that his right hand, the one he broke recently {during football season}, is all healed now - although he's not back to pitching yet.

I took plenty of photos ... those herein are just some of the many!

the AZTECS won this game handily against the Turbos;
here, Trevor coming in to home

-- D.

All is Well ...

... a quick update - after much ice-packing {his back} and some Tylenol, a good movie, and then a really long, good night's sleep -- MARK is up and hobbling around. Stiff and Sore, but Still Here! As for the stooooopid Christmas Lights -- I've done my best to order him to STAY OFF THE ROOF and to FORGET THE LIGHTS ... although if you know Marky Mark, you know that telling or asking him to do {and especially NOT to do} something -- is tantamount to a Challenge, and he can't resist a Challenge. It's insane! Pray for us ...

-- D.

Monday, December 1, 2008

HO HO HO {or in this case, OW OW OW}

What price Christmas Cheer? See the LIGHTS {at right of photo}? See the broken roof tiles {the rest of the photo}? READ ON, gentle readers.

We had quite the fright here this evening. Cara and Kaia were here, with K's friend Maddy, and I was patiently awaiting the GE repair guy {yes, AGAIN} ... just getting homemade turkey soup started ...
Unbeknownst to any of us, my adorable husband was UP ON THE ROOFTOP, well, the middle one, anyway, getting the rest of the Christmas lights hung ... using one of those extension ladders with the grippy feet, made for uneven surfaces and such .... YEAH, right. Somehow I get that they're for uneven surfaces, but I'm guessing they're not meant to be used on concrete roof tiles? Hmmm ... you be the judge.

From all points of the house, a HUGE CRASH was heard, with much clanging, and then the sorts of expletives you don't want your "grand" hearing, let alone her little guest ...

From all said points, we went running, meeting up in the upstairs hall, trying to figure out who did what to whom ... and where. Once all us girls were accounted for, it dawned on us that it had to have been ... MARK.

But where was he? Back up in the attic? OH NO, not the roof.
OH YES, the roof. We all stood in the upstairs hall, peering out the front window, and down onto my then-prone -- feet towards us {bare feet, no less} and head tilting down towards the edge of the roof -- moaning and muttering and trying to control the curse words he SO wanted to blurt. He could talk, he could wince, and so -- when I asked if I should call "911", he pretty much told me I was ridiculous.
Cara helped me find the nearest and biggest window for him to crawl back through - yes, he managed it all on his own - and he went in to survey his damages. Meanwhile, I ran downstairs before the shock could take over, I turned down the stove, and I grabbed my trusty camera.

first stop, outside the front door, where the ladder came to rest {well, with a little "help" from Mark, who was very angry with said ladder for failing him}

I then turned the camera up, where you can see Cara peeking out the window - horrified that her mother is TAKING PICTURES of the carnage ...

Here, the images of the aftermath. Too bad you can't see the enormous roofing nail that sticks up a good three inches above the broken ridge tiles now ... it's a sight to behold. That, and to top off his trick-of-the-day, somehow the accident tripped an electrical breaker, so that in our master bedroom, we have no power on two walls. Including our reading lamps at bedside.

next stop, upstairs, for the view out the window where we first found Mark -- he was lying on his back, to the right of that ridge line, feet at bottom of photo and head at top ... he's lucky it wasn't wet & slippery on that roof ...

Soooooooo, he's upstairs, having taken his Tylenol and with ice pack in hand -- while his turkey soup is brewing down here -- while his loving wife composes a BLOG post complete with photographs of the whole experience.
Oh, the drama ... and the trauma ... let this be a lesson, boys & girls: DO NOT try this at home. Hire a Professional Light Hanger, like Mark's brother Rex does {and make sure you have excellent liability insurance, just in case ...}.
-- D.

what on earth is a BUCKEYE BALL ??!!!!

Okay, for those who have e-mailed me asking what a BUCKEYE BALL is {other than a tidbit sized heart attack waiting to happen, that is}, here is a list of the ingredients:

Peanut Butter (smooth, not chunky)
Powdered Sugar
Paraffin Wax

I am not kidding. There is PARAFFIN WAX in these things. Well, ON them, anyway, all glommed in there with the melted chocolate. It helps the chocolate harden nicely. Yes, and if you add a wick, and give them with a book of matches, your friends can light themselves up this holiday season. ;-) {or am I displaying my ignorance here? is there paraffin wax in candles? or not? hmmm ...}

apparently, the making of Buckeye Balls is a laughter-filled experience. Here, Victoria is having a grand old time, just getting started.

thank goodness for the Pampered Chef measure thing-a-ma-bob thing. it makes quick & easy work of getting the PB measured AND into the pan ...

Seriously, that is all that is in these little goobers. They are tasty. It's like making home-made Reese's ...

in case you've never seen butter and peanut butter MELTING and MELDING, this is a nice little illustration ...

Victoria and I had fun making 'em, and they are now {far as I know, anyway} locked up in the vault {again, I am NOT kidding} up the Lane, where Victoria rents the cute little cottage. Don't even ask why that property has a vault. It's walk-in, by the way. DON'T ASK, like I said.

V, rolling rolling rolling ... how 'bout those Balls?

If you really cannot live without the recipe, we might be persuaded to part with it. Of course, anyone with any connection to the Buckeye state of OHIO was born with the recipe imprinted in their brain, so you can just ask them to recite it from the heart.

Happy holidays.

my Rock Star, wondering what on earth could be cuter than HIMSELF,

and trying to figure out just how to get us to DROP a Ball or two his way ... and wearing his ANTI-BARK collar since he thought if he barked at us, we might be shaken up enough to do just that !!!

-- Davielle

BY THE WAY, I did totally forget to mention the other day that our Limoncello-Buckeye Balls extravaganza was all PREFACED with the making of V's father's terrific CHEESECAKE on Wednesday night ... that's what Victoria brought to my brother's house on Thanksgiving, and I am here to tell you - thank God there wasn't a bite left over, 'cause I would be posting this from the local Weight Watcher's WARD ... you know, where they unstoppable go to spend the holiday season? As my friend Karyl might think to say right about now ... BUUUUURRRRRPPPPP !!!! {oooh, gross}