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Sunday’s Ramblings

I always sit on a Sunday night and dread the proverbial Monday. Tonight is no different - other than the fact that I had a great weekend. Here’s what is flying around in my head…

It was good having a weekend off with the hubby. We don’t always see much of one another, and I really enjoyed being with him!

I had a stupid CT scan on Friday to see if I have kidney stones. I am supposed to find out tomorrow. Keep your fingers crossed! If they are there, perhaps they are only small ones!

We took full advantage of our new backyard Saturday night - and my new smoothie maker (yes, it does make alcohol-laden fruity drinks…just the way I like it!). We grilled great steaks, had potatoes on the grill, corn on the cob and smores by the fire pit. We were in heaven!

We started adding color to the yard today, with a full host of bushes, flowers and plants added to our ever improving landscape. It was so nice planting some living things and beautifying our yard! It will only get better!

We grilled burgers tonight…even though it was cloudy and in the low 60s, we couldn’t help but sit out on the patio and eat dinner. Did I tell you that we love our new yard? HA!

Hubby picked out some pepper plants to grow - only one isn’t hot (my red bell peppers…yum!). The rest…wow…all I gotta say is that I need to pick up some Tums! :-)

Lastly, I do dread going into work tomorrow. I work for a great company, don’t get me wrong, but I just don’t want the weekend to end. But there’s light at the end of the tunnel. I will be off work for a month in less than a month now! The kids are out of school soon and we’re going to have plenty of time to play!

Tomorrow night is Bauer night! I can’t believe the final show of the season is coming this month (whahhhhhhhh!)!!! I LOVE MONDAYS!

Anyway….blah blah blah. I just had to ramble on for a bit…now I feel normal again! BWHAHAH!

UPDATE: So, according to my CT scan, I don’t have kidney stones and everything appeared to be normal. So why is it that my kidneys hurt now? I’m sure it’s psychological. Time will tell! :-)

United 93

Hubby and I had a chance to watch United 93 today. I think his post sums up some of what I felt. The part about feeling helpless was spot on.

The tears started cranking up when the last passenger on almost missed the flight - I’ll bet the thought of “I wish I had been delayed one or two more minutes” went through his mind time and again. The full blown tears started when the door on the plane actually closed and locked, sealing their fate. There were segments of time during which those tears were replaced by anger which, for me, inevitably results in more tears.

I was extremely surprised when I almost found myself in a position to have to walk out of the movie. I seriously thought I was having some kind of anxiety attack. My heart was racing, I was shaking and I couldn’t sit still. I did make it through the movie, only to find myself a blubbering fool once the screen went black. I wore my sunglasses out of the theater to cover up my red-rimmed eyes. I wasn’t alone, though. Women were fixing their mascara, even a number of men were wiping away tears.

Why did this touch me as strongly as it did? I did not lose a loved one that day, but I think most of us lost a part of our former selves. Throughout the movie, I was reliving that day in my head along with what was happening on the screen. Pissed off that this happened 2 days after our son’s birthday. Crying that my infant daughter was so innocent, but would be brought up in a world far less carefree than when I was a kid. Furious that people would have the stupid idea that this was something that should be done. I remember going to work that day (I worked swings at the time so had been sitting at home absorbed in the coverage all day). I remember a girl on my team who came to work even though her cousin was missing. I clearly remember the call she got when her cousin, although seriously injured in the Pentagon, was found alive and would make it. The prayer circles, the customers calling in that night not because they had a problem, just because they wanted to hear another voice…and perhaps do something normal. I remember the long lines outside the building because people thought they needed to get gasoline before it ran out. …and I remember the looming silence as there were no planes flying through the normal flight pattern that took many planes within earshot of our facility. Those days were freightening for me as I usually spent an hour in the building alone before I went home at 1am. The first time the fighter jet flew by our building at about 12:30am, I was on the floor under my cubicle, thinking I was going to die. I left work early that day. And then they hired guards to walk us to our cars and ensure we were safe not long after that. All of these memories came flooding back while the horror played out on the screen. I think both the movie and those memories playing together in my head almost had me.

I am consistently awestruck by the bravery of the passengers and crew on this flight. Their decision to fight back not only saved countless lives, they ensured that no more terrorists will *ever* do this again - no one will let them. If I have anything to say about how the actual film was done, I would say that they painted such a candid and frank picture of what must have happened on that flight without adding the normal Hollywood or Made-for-TV-Movie over-dramatization we typically see. They made me feel the frustration air traffic control must have felt - they made me feel confused when mixed messages were going on and they made me feel the fear and anxiety every person in this scenario had to have felt, no matter whether they were on that plane or a spectator to the situation on the ground. My heart breaks for the families of these heroes.

While it will likely never happen, I think this movie should be part of a high school’s American History lessons. It would truly help put a face to what happened that day - even for those who weren’t around to experience it. The bravery of these men and women should *never* fade away - to do so would be a disgrace. On the flipside, the brazen and hateful things the coward terrorists did should absolutely never be forgotten. In my mind, their faces are painted on the tip of every bullet and missile our servicemen and women use while fighting the W.O.T.

Both Hubby and I craved normalcy once we got out of that theater. The first thing we did was go get our children. The next thing we did was hug them.

Cotillion linked with United 93
Portia Rediscovered linked with United 93 Round Up
MY Vast Right Wing Conspiracy linked with My Experience With United 93
The Jawa Report linked with My Experience With United 93
Rachael Ray: One of Time’s Top 100

I certainly think Rachael Ray had some influence on my life - just look at my book shelf or my kitchen and it’s pretty clear. But Rachael has been identified by Time as one of the top 100 people who shape our world. Pretty awesome, don’t you think? …and who provided Rachael’s write up? Mario Batali! Here it is:

In fewer than five years, Rachael Ray, 38, has radically changed the way America cooks dinner. Her perky-girl-next-door swagger, her catchphrases for techniques and her dinner ideology of simpler, less expensive and just in time have sold billions of books and placed her at the top of the talent love heap at the Food Network, which has changed its focus from information exchange to helpful encouragement. Dinner at her house with my kids is tastier than I could have imagined. My boys went wild for the veal, meatball and pasta stoup, as she calls it, and, like her audience, were quickly softened to putty in her kitchen-confident hands, disarmed of their usual ingredient suspicions by Ray’s “just try one” allure.

At book signings and public appearances, I have seen her fans faint, tremble, mumble, moan and ultimately hit the front of the line and embrace their food hero, repeating her mantras such as “let’s run a knife through it” and “easy peasy” like Catholics at Sunday Mass. Mass—mass appeal—is the message. Ray dresses like a suburban American—not a chef (that is key)—and her ease with basic kitchen techniques and a simple-to-find-in-Topeka ingredient list does not challenge viewers but entices them to join her in the famous “carry the stuff from the fridge to the counter” move with her anti-food-stylist packaged groceries. The promise of a meal in less than 30 min. is delivered every day and is calculated to hit all those who ever had a family or thought of having one, coaxing them to eschew the trap of fast-food facility and truly cook—even the easy fast stuff—at home.

Nice write-up, Mario! I have to admit, Rachael Ray has influenced me in more ways that how my book shelf or my kitchen looks. She’s reminded me how simple and rewarding cooking for my family and others can be - and it doesn’t have to take hours to do it!

A Heart-Breaking Case of Baby Murders

I don’t know how I missed this story when it originally surfaced, but reading this article makes me sick to my stomach and full of disgust that a human being could possibly do something like this.

FRANKFURT AN DER ODER, Germany — Family members of a German mother accused of killing nine of her newborn babies testified Tuesday their suspicions she was pregnant were met with denials.

Sabine Hilschinz, who was arrested after the remains were found last July buried in flower pots and a fish tank in her parents’ back yard, has been standing trial in state court here since last week.

Yes, you read that right. Nine newborn babies. Carried the pregnancies to term and once the babies were born, she buried them in flower pots and fish tanks.

Hilschinz, 40, faces eight counts of manslaughter for the deaths, believed to have taken place between 1988 and 1998. She could be jailed for up to 15 years if convicted. She will not be prosecuted in the death of a ninth child because of the statute of limitations.

Frank Koenig, a nephew of Hilschinz, said he recalled the family discussing the possible pregnancies with her, but when she denied them, they accepted her story.

Imagine being a friend of the family and finding some of the remains while you were cleaning out their garage.

Initially she saw plastic bags, he said, but pulling it out they found the remains of the babies.

“And then lots of little bones fell out,” he said.

Further digging in several flower pots turned up a baby’s skull. A day after the discovery, family members decided to contact the police, he said.

How horrible! And this woman stated to a judge last August that she only really remembers two of the births because in all of the other births she got drunk when she went into labor.

I guess to her, abortion wasn’t the answer (likely due to her selfish concerns about her OWN health) , but it seemed okay to wait until the baby was born to kill it. Has she heard of adoption? How about contraception? How about keeping her legs together?

I see shit like this and I almost can’t see straight I’m so pissed. Gah!!

The Anti-American “Civil Liberties” Union…at it Again

They are at it again - saying they are doing it in the name of “free speech:”

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The American Civil Liberties Union is challenging a Kentucky law aimed at preventing protests from disrupting funerals for soldiers killed in Iraq.

Members of a Kansas Baptist church have protested at military funerals, claiming soldiers’ deaths are a sign that God is punishing America for tolerating homosexuality.

The new law, signed by Kentucky Gov. Ernie Fletcher in March, bans protests within 300 feet of memorial services, wakes and burials.

The ACLU says this goes way too far and limits free speech and expression too much. This is rich:

The ACLU argues that people could unknowingly violate it by stopping to chat on a public sidewalk near a funeral home. The civil liberties group said it could also prevent pro-military people from participating in counter-protests outside memorial services.

Oh yeah, sure. Here is Bob walking up the street and sees his friend Fred in front of a funeral home and they stop and chat. CHAT…not to demonstrate, not to protest, not to yell hateful things about a fallen soldier at his or her funeral, but to CHAT. And Bob and Fred would get arrested? What crap. …and I love the way the ACLU slips in that they are also challenging the law to protect the counter-protests. How admirable of them.

Let a family mourn the loss of their hero. No one is saying a person or people cannot protest, they just can’t sit by the casket while they are doing it.

Update: More at Protein Wisdom & Stop the ACLU!

The Sandbox linked with ACLU Fights Funeral Law in Kentucky
Stop The ACLU linked with ACLU Files Lawsuit Challenging Funeral Protest Bill
Miscalculation of Protestors in Omaha

Here at Merri Musings, we are proud to say that we are in a position to put to rest a discrepancy noted in the local news*:

Several thousand people participated in a rally at Omaha’s Tranquility Park on Monday afternoon. Police and organizer estimates conflict on exactly how many people marched. Omaha police estimated about 2,000 people participated, but organizers said it was three or four times that.

Our most effective reporters were on the scene and can, indeed, solve this debate. Omaha police, as well as rally organizers, were slightly off from the actual count. Here is a photo from today’s event:

*what you have just read in this post is sarcasm. Any confusion with actual events and/or anything like it will be solely and entirely blamed on the reader. Thank you, and have a great day!

One of the Best “24″ Lines Ever

There are many great lines that can be quoted from 24, but this one, via Bill Buchanan is one of the best (and is soon to be a classic):

“You don’t know what you’re dealing with, you little ass kisser.”

Oh, yeah. Now *that’s* what I’m talkin’ about!

A Day to Go Down in History!

Who cares if the rest of the world thinks this day is historical because it is “Don’t Bring Your Illegal Immigrant to Work Day” or whatever they say it is.

It is on *this* day, 5 years ago that our beautiful Bug, Emily, make her first appearance in this world - all 8 pounds, 8 ounces of her. She came right on her due date, even though Mommy’s doctor was out of town on business. Mommy could hardly believe she was in labor, but Emily made sure she figured it out in time to get an epidural! Bradley was so excited to become a big brother…not so sure he’s as excited now as he was then but he loves you all the same! :-)

…and today is the first day (and likely the last) that Emily’s favorite thing is Strawberry Shortcake. So we have a strawberry flavored, Strawberry Shortcake decorated birthday cake, just for her. She was up and at ‘em, bright and early at 6:00am, emphatically declaring that the birthday cake is “BEAUTIFUL!” Yay!!!!!!!!!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BUG! We love you!! :-)

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