All I've ever wanted is to make a difference in someone's life.

Monday, December 29, 2008

GORGEOUS bling from ice.com

Okay - now all you husbands and/or boyfriends who are in the dog house because you got the wife/girlfriend a vacuum cleaner or something "practical" for Christmas can redeem yourselves. Do your woman right this Valentines day with diamonds or jewelry at affordable prices! A GF of mine recently turned me onto this site called Ice.com. It's a discount site for some awesomely sparkly baubles! Check it out (my personal fav) 1/2 Carat Princess Cut Diamond 14K White Gold Earrings:



Evidently, these (above) were shown on the Dr. Phil show. They retail for $1,000 but you can get them on the website for the low, low price of $495 OR 5 payments of $99. They also received rave reviews!

They literally cut prices in half, allow for payment plans and offer FREE shipping on anything over $150. Here are a few more examples:
These babies also retail for $1000. On sale for $495. (9-10mm Cultured Tahitian Pearl and 1/5 Carat Diamond 14K White Gold Leverback Earrings)
Ditto as above for these. (Michiko-3/8 Carat Black Diamond and Cultured Pearl 14K White Gold Spiral Earrings)




The site is having its 2009 Winter clearance sale now as well - up to 75% off! Hurry and make that lady happy! Or, start shopping for Valentines Day, which is right around the corner (hint hint hubby)!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Vegas day two, and three

Woke up Sunday morning around 6am and took 2 Aleve to stop the throbbing in my head.

Woke up again around 10 and took 2 more. Note to self: don't try to keep up with Al in the alcoholic beverage drinking department (yes, I tell myself this every year).

We decided to have breakfast in the room. It's always good to get something greasy in the tummy to help with a hang over. So we got to IP a little late - around 2pm, during the 2nd round of football games. Our first stop was the bar to get our bucket of beer (hair of the dog), then headed over to find a table amidst all the other bloggers. My next goal was to search out Falstaff.

Soon after we sat down, however, he appeared at my side, saving me the search. Falstaff!!! Always good to see you! We talked for a long while about the Charlotte area, and he gave us advice about certain areas to scout out for our move in the next year and a half or so (thanks!). Then Dawn Summers shows up and Falstaff bets her that he can name more former Panthers players than she can name current Pats. Falstaff's 15 went down to Dawn's 35 players. Here are some pics:

Soon after that, the very lucky team of Joanne and Buddy started buying shots. Here's a pic of Recess Rampage, Joanne, BD, Smokkee, Joshua Carlson and me, the love elf, doing our first of several (ugg) shots that day:

Oh, and Bayne finally showed up sometime into the second games. I always have to get my pic with him - it's tradition. I just decided that right now - lol.


The happy couple:



On our way home Monday, we hit some pretty nasty weather:

So that's it for this year's trip report. It was a great time and always fun to see friends. As usual, I wish I would have spent more time with the many other bloggers there, but there's always next year, and the next. A special thanks to Peaker for going to dinner with us Saturday. Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures of us! boooooo elf.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Gideon needs our help.



Dear Compassionate Animal Lover,

Gideon is a one year old, white German Shepherd who has endured one of the most horrific injuries a dog can endure. He was found in an Orange County park in terrible condition with maggots covering over half of his body; he was then impounded with Orange County Animal Shelter. Coastal German Shepherd Rescue (CGSR) was asked to assist with rescuing Gideon and getting him the appropriate medical care. He was rescued from their shelter on 11/18/08.



I am a faithful donator to CGSR and believe in thier mission. In fact, we adopted our baby Smokkee from this organization. I can vouch for them. I have no alterior motive for this post (no ad $$ for example), other than simply doing the right thing. We are reaching out to anyone who can help us fund the enormous medical bill that Gideon will be facing. Medical bills exceeding $12,000 are anticipated.

Read more below about Gideon's journey.....

Gideon en route to Dr. Wheaton's (no, not Wil !)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
He is safe with us now, but he has a very long recovery ahead of him. It is believed that he was hit by a car and then dragged. He is missing most of the skin on his left side and pockets of skin are missing on his right side. His injury is a few days old and therefore there is a lot of necrotic skin. He is resting comfortably under the care of a wonderful vet team. Dr. Wheaton feels that even though this is the largest degloving injury he has ever seen....that with vet care, patience and a lot of love...we can pull him through! His recovery is going to be a minimum of 6 months.
Strength in a name....
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



We are now calling him Gideon, meaning strength. He is very stoic and although he is in unimaginable pain, he rests his head on your hands to look up to you for reassurance. He is no more than a year old and will be a stunning boy once he heals. We need all of your well wishes and paws crossed so that he can stay strong through this next crucial period.
Join us to help Gideon!


(The staff changes Gideon's bandages twice a day and also packs his wound with sugar. The sugar acts as an antibacterial and encourages the regranulation of new tissue.
Please make a donation today! Anything helps - $10, $15 or $20. Together, we will make a difference. WE ARE ONLY A FEW HUNDRED DOLLARS AWAY FROM REACHING OUR GOAL.

Mail:
Coastal German Shepherd Rescue
PO Box 50726
Irvine, CA 92619

Online:
Coastal German Shepherd Rescue
Telephone:
Alicia Pet Care Center (Gideon's Fund): 949-768-1313

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Vegas Day One

We got up at the crack of dawn yesterday morning, got ready, packed and dropped baby Smokkee off at the doggy hotel, then made the 4 hour trek out to Vegas. We got to our room around 1:30 so Smokkee had to rush off and get registered for the tourney. I spent the next few hours "luxuriating" in the room - you know, girly stuff like doing my hair, makeup, hanging out having some "me" time.

I headed over to the Venetian around 4pm and the bloggers happen to be on their first break from the tourney. I saw Kat first, then CK and Peaker! I was so excited to see everyone! However, it was during break and conversations were short - something like "Love Elf! Great to see you! Gotta pee - we'll talk more later!" I headed over to the poker room to look for Smokkee and also saw Don, Blinders, Aston, Bayne, BadBlood and several others. Break was soon over and everyone returned to their respective tables. I headed to the bar to find my very good friend Al.

He was sitting with Joanne and another friend, Mike. We proceeded to order drinks and talked for hours. As other bloggers busted out and made their way to the "losers lounge" as some called it, I captured the moment in photos:

Al and me:



Bobby, me and Al:



The famous Dr. Pauly and me:



Smokkee, Joe Speaker and Al:



BuddyDank and me:



More to come later. I'll link everyone up later, too. Just wanted to get a brief update out!
Oh - and I'm disapointed to report that one of my very favorite bloggers, Waffles, is not in attendence this December. Miss you Waffs!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Almost there

I can't believe this is the last week of Fall semester!
Whew - I've almost made it through. I have one more final paper due, then I'm done. For now. Well at least done with school for the next month or so. Then, it's back to the grind.

One and a half more years of classes. Then a year of internship.
The time is actually goring pretty fast. But, the last 3-4 months has been tough. I'm learning a lot though, which I guess is the point.

So, I'm really excited about seeing everyone in Vegas. Hotels and gas are so cheap right now that we really couldn't pass on it. And, it will be nice to get away and celebrate the semester end. During break, I hope to blog more and post lots of pictures of the last 3 months - so much has happened.

My nephew turned 2, Ray and I celebrated our 1 year anniversary and my mom turned 60. None of which I posted about. Ho hum...
Busy bee, busy bee.

So I'm mostly done with Christmas shopping, which is awesome. I have a few more things to buy, but I know what they are. These days I go with a lot of gift cards. They are a no-brainer, and the shipping cost is minimal! Ray and I are traveling to Charlotte for Christmas to see my mom and her husband. He was diagnosed with cancer about 4 months ago and it will be good to see them. After some pretty intense chemo, radiation and surgery, the docs report that they got all the tumor and the prognosis is positive. Now we just have to fatten him back up!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

We Vegas!

As some of you may now know, we have decided to make the treck to Las Vegaaaaaahhhhhhhssssssssss!!!!!!!!

So, we are driving out Saturday morning and staying @ TI.
Looking forward to seeing everyone!!!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Rakeback, anyone?

Decided to look into some rakeback deals and promotions that are being offered for the last month of the year. Of course as always the big 3 of rakeback are the ones that had the best stuff on their sites.

RakeBrain.com caught my attention the most. As always they have very good sign-up bonuses and return percentages but they got some pretty cool rake chases this month. For Betfair Poker they got a free roll up for grabs where the top 9 raker's of the month battle for the prize pool, which is their rake total and will probably reach a substantial number as the clock to the deadline winds down. CelebPoker is offering something pretty sweet in my opinion as well. They are hosting a 30,000 Euro prize pool game which different levels of raker's could qualify for and they have until January 15th to do so. Found this pretty cool so hopefully you guys will use this and get some free money from RakeBrain.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Smokkee and Iggy have bounties in this week's Bodonkey

On Tuesday December 9th, the Blogfather sits with a T$109 bounty and on Thursday December 11th, Smokkee will play with a T$109 bounty on his head. Last time Smokkee played The Bodonkey with a bounty, he took it down and captured his own bounty.

You can download poker for free and play the Bodonkey Tue and Thu nights at 9:05pm ET. T$600 is added to the prize pool every week.



Bodog is also offering prop bets on several poker bloggers. Smokkee is the overall favorite to finish on top of the leaderboard and win the Tournament of Champions December 18th. That should be some trick since he's gonna miss the first hour and blind down while we pick up our luggage from the airport and drive to my Mom's in Charlotte, NC.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Day Donkery

Made a rare appearance in last night’s Bodonkey

We rushed back from smokkee’s brother’s house after Thanksgiving dinner to play in the Bodonkey.

I haven’t played in a while so I was a bit rusty. I lost a bunch of chips early on with QQ vs. AA. Fortunately, I didn’t go broke with it and was able to stick around a while. After limping too much and hanging around pots I had no business being in, I found myself with about 700 chips.

I then looked down at AK.

Love_elf’s poker tip of the day: don’t min-raise AK in a blogger game then shove on a low flop into another player’s set of 2’s.

I don’t get to play that much and even though I was unlucky a couple of times, I still had a fun time.

Smokkee won $100+T$109 for 1st and sits atop the leaderboard after 10 tournaments in the Bodog Blogger Series II.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bounty on Waffles tonight!

T$109 Bounty on Waffles Tonight @ 9:05pm ET

9:05pm ET: Bodonkey II
Buy-in: $10 + $1
2500 Starting Chips / 15 min blind levels
Prize Pool will be distributed as per Bodog's standard multi-table payout table.

BONUS PRIZES:
1st place: T$109 ($100K Buy-in) + $25 Casino Credit
2nd place: T$75
3rd place: T$50
3 bubble players: T$11 (entry refunded)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Knock out Evelyn Ng tomorrow (Thu 11/13) and get T$109

On Thursday November 13th, 2008 poker sensation, Evelyn Ng will compete in the Bodog Blogger Tournament Series.

There will be a bounty on her head for T$109 to play in Bodog's $100K Guaranteed Tournament occurring each Sunday at 4 PM. If Evelyn wins this tournament, the T$109 credit to play in Bodog's $100K Guaranteed Tournament will go to the poker blogger that places 1st runner up.



This blogger tournament series is open to poker bloggers worldwide and runs on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 9:05 PM ET.

More details are available at the official blogger series site at http://www.bodogbloggertournament.com/

Learn more about Professional Poker Player Evelyn Ng at http://poker.bodoglife.com/team-bodog/evelyn-ng.html

Just what is Bodog's 100K Guaranteed Tournament? With one of the biggest overlays in the industry, the value of this tournament is literally unbeatable!
Find out more at http://poker.bodoglife.com/tournaments/100k-guaranteed-tournament.html

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Today, I rest.

Last night I worked until about midnight, came home and watched a movie with Ray. Actually 1 and 1/2 movies. Went to bed around 3am. Silly, huh? I had to get back up at 6am to do some work (I'm on call). After I worked, I called my sis to do a webcam with her and my precious nephew. His 2-yr birthday was Thursday and they are having his party today. Ray and I got him a play kitchen. Ray thinks it's too girly, but I think it's fine. He loved it! He's so inquisitive and easy to please. I'm lucky 'cause I get all the good stuff and don't have to deal with the bad stuff - all the "no's" and "I don't want to's". LOL

Anyway, I went back to bed after this and slept until noon.

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Stories of an Intern...part I

Last week I was doing an intake interview with a man who is severely depressed. His depression began about two years ago when his father died from multiple strokes. He became unable to function to the point where he lost his business, his wife and his house. He started drinking and wrapped his $90K car around a tree. At present, he’s homeless. And depressed. And suicidal. As I’m sitting in the room with this man, I’m feeling totally incompetent to help him. What do you say to someone who says “I want to die.” He literally almost threw himself in front of a train 3 weeks ago. The only thing that saved him was his daughter. He thought of her. He did not want her to go through the loss of her father, like he had lost his father. Oh – and about 6 weeks ago he got a brief construction gig. While at the site, another homeless man and former inmate started a fight with him. The inmate won. Big time. My client suffered a concussion and needed several stitches.

This is just one person’s story I’ve heard since starting this internship 2 months ago.

Another client was molested by her sister when she was 7 years old. This continued for over ten years. She was beaten by her older sister too. As adults now, they are estranged.
But the younger sister decided to invite her older sis over to spend the night with her kids. They both have kids now, and her intention was for the cousins to have a play date/sleep over. The two sisters ended up in the same bed. Normally, this is fine. This is what sisters do. However, in this case, it was not fine. The older sister, now in her late 30s, tried to molest her younger sister again. Can you believe that? The worst part of the story is that the older sister has children….

A client of one of my professors comes to therapy with a severe history of sexual and physical abuse. She was molested by her brother beginning at age 9. This went on for about ten years. At one point, she got pregnant from her brother and had a miscarriage. Her mother died when she was about 5 years old. Her father remarried shortly after and the new wife beat this little girl senseless. She still has scares on her face from the beatings. She eventually left the home and got married to a man that was abusive in every way. One night she left him and went to her father’s home, 2 kids in tow, bloodied and battered. Her father turned her away saying “you made your bed now lie in it.”

Pretty heavy stuff. I always knew this stuff existed. But have never been faced with it live and in person. Hearing the stories of the beaten, the battered, the depressed and the lonely certainly has an effect on a person. It’s just so sad what human beings do to each other. I’m not surprised by anything anymore. Well, not much. I know I haven’t heard it all. Every day brings new stories and new discoveries. As I travel this journey, I learn the most about myself. What I can handle, what I can’t, and what I won’t even consider working with. I’m learning how to help people cope, how to communicate with them in a way that no one has ever communicated to them in the past. It can be life changing. It’s all very fascinating really. How people survive. Sometimes, when someone is bitching to me about something stupid, I just look at them and think “it could be so much worse.” The things that people go through. It really gives me a perspective about my own life. I feel so lucky. Yes, I’m exhausted and frustrated at times, but that’s nothing. Nothing at all.

Friday, November 07, 2008

To Vegas or not to Vegas?

Ray and I are undecided about going to Vegas in December.
On the one hand, I will have just finished this semester in school and would really love a visit to the spa, doing some shopping, ect. (hopefully no more "shoe incidents" like last time).
But on the other hand, If we go, I'll want to stay someplace nice and Ray will play poker, and we'll want to fly of course....eventually costing us several hundred dollars.

So, we're undecided. Who's all going from blogger land?
I've been pretty out of the blogger loop lately and would love to see everyone!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

BoDonkey is Back!

Bust Eric “Rizen” Lynch in tonight’s Bodonkey and receive $75 cash $$$ money in a addition to a signed copy of his book, “Winning Poker Tournaments One Hand a Time”.

Buy In: $10 + $1
Game: NL Holdem
Starting Chips: 2500
Level Duration: 15 minutes
Blind Structure: Bodog's standard structure
Prize: Prize Pool will be distributed as per Bodog's standard payout structure.

In addition, the top 3 finishers and the 3 bubble players win bonuses.
BONUS PRIZES1st place: T$109 + $25 Casino Credit ($100K Buy in)2nd place: T$753rd place: T$503 bubble players*: T$11 (entry refunded)

Friday, October 24, 2008

How to Get Started In Online Poker

Playing poker online is ever increasingly popular and the game with the greatest following is Texas hold'em. Around the world thousands of people are playing Texas hold'em online every day. If you have decided to try your hand at this growing phenomenon, you may find the following tips very helpful. As you get more advanced you will realize that understanding marginal situations is crucial in poker.

The Switch -- Live Play to Online Texas Hold'em

Switching from live play to online Texas hold'em is extremely easy in practical terms. You will no longer have to worry about keeping play-dates with friends or finding enough people to play poker at any given time, as there are Texas hold'em hands running 24/7 online.

There is no longer a need to leave your home in order to play or a need to spend money on the venture. Tactically your arsenal has changed, as you will no longer be face to face with the opposition, thus reading their physical tells is not an option and you no longer have to maintain your "poker face" in play.

Instead of physical tells, you will be utilizing data collection on your opponents and paying attention to the speed and frequency with which they bet. There are also many software programs available that calculate poker odds and can assist your decision making process.

Texas Hold'em as a New Experience

If you have no experience in playing Texas hold'em, or poker in general, it is a good idea to prepare yourself ahead of time by learning the rules and basic strategies involved in Texas hold'em. The first piece of advice that you might hear repeatedly is to carefully select the hands you choose to play. Playing too many hands is the most recurring newcomer mistake in Texas hold'em.

Visiting large poker sites with free-play tables or "freerolls" is the best way to get started. Additionally, asking experienced players for advice is a good move to make.

Stepping Up the Game

The odds are against your doing well in your very first game of online Texas hold'em, but don't get discouraged. It could take some time for you to learn and or adjust to online Texas hold'em, but you will improve with time and experience. In fact, the only real way to improve is to continue playing.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Midterms.....uuuuuuuuuggggg

Short post:
Since when did midterms span several weeks?
And, most of them have a "Part 1" and a "Part 2". sick.
Example:

Law and Ethics -
Part 1: in class midterm - 10 essay questions
Part 2: presentation on an ethical dilemma

Psychoanalytic Theory and Therapy:
Part 1: Take home midterm - 10 pages (bs)
Part 2: Take home midterm - a million pages (more bs)

Then, I have a 20 page paper due tomorrow, a psychological report due ASAP and 3 more clients I have set appointments with. Feel my pain?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fantasy Football and Depression (an unintentional combo)

Well, I did better last week - squeaked into the points.
But, I still have a way to go! I think I'm in like 22nd place or something - pretty sad compared to last year.

By the way, today is National Depression Screening day. We are holding screenings at ICC, the center where I intern. The screening consists of a questionnaire that actually addresses depression, anxiety, mood disorder and PTSD. The depression section asks you to rate (all of the time, most of the time, some of the time or none of the time) how you've been feeling over the past two weeks on the following:

Have you...

1. been feeling low in energy, slowed down?

2. been blaming yourself for things?

3. had poor appetite?

4. had difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep?

5. been feeling hopeless about the future?

6. been feeling blue?

7. been feeling no interest in things?

8. had feelings of worthlessness?

9. thought about or wanted to commit suicide?

10. had difficulty concentrating or making decisions?

If anyone out there thinks they might be suffering from depression and would like to talk, I'm here. Please don't hesitate to contact me.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

My birthday

My birthday was this past Wednesday. Ray took me to this really great restaurant in Laguna Beach called French 75 over the weekend to celebrate! I had the 3-way (he he) duck with plum sauce and Ray had Fillet Mignon. I also enjoyed a glass or two of the vino. For dessert, we had chocolate souffle...mmmmm. And, our waiter was actually French! Go figure.





Thursday, September 25, 2008

Ut Oh.......could Lady Fate be any more generous?


So much for the Pac-10 being No. 1 USC's personal stomping ground. Oregon State shook up the BCS on Thursday night by upsetting USC, building a 21-point halftime lead before holding off the Trojans 27-21.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Bad football weekend

I know you can't win 'em all, but Come On......seriously?
Cleveland 6, Pittsburgh 10
San Diego 38, Denver 39
Ohio State 3, USC 35
And to top it all off, I'm in 35th place in the Fantasy Sports Live tourney!
Uggggg........

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Can they do it?


Most everyone says that Ohio State has no chance tomorrow. I say they do.

After all, everyone loves an underdog, right?


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Can we talk??? It's only the game of the year!

Lots going on, peeps! Ray and I went to the Chargers game last Sunday. They ended up losing to the Panthers in the last 2 seconds!! Ugg....
For a complete game recap, go here.
It was a good day though. We saw our "homies" - our other season ticket holder friends. Does anyone out there have season tix to anything? Isn't it great the comradery you build between your fellow fans?

Also, the BIGGEST GAME of the year is coming up the Saturday!!

I know USC is underestimating the Bucks. But, so are a lot of people.

Just watch our offense boyz! ya, that's them, racing past you as you wonder if the ball has even been snapped.
Good catch, Mr. Wells. Nice pass, Mr. Boeckman.

There is NOTHING like a Buckeye win!
Oh, and I'm playing the Fantasy Sport Live again this football season.
So far, I'm holding my own in 14th place, but have to do better!
Hopefully next week, I'll catch up!



Saturday, September 06, 2008

Help Save Andy!


Coastal German Shepherd Rescue is a non-profit 501(c)3 public charity dedicated to finding loving homes for abandoned German Shepherds in Southern California.

Coastal exists solely because of your tax deductible donations, which support our efforts to save these very deserving animals. Please donate today and help us save German Shepherds.

Fundraising target:
$3,500
Total raised so far:
$2,100.00


Special Funds Needed! Often, the decision to save a dog's life is determined by our ability to pay their medical bills, which is very disheartening.We have not been able to assist as many medical cases as our hearts have wanted to over the past couple of months due to a depleted medical fund.

We rescued Andy on his very last day, not knowing that he was very sick.
Our Boy Andy Has Pnuemonia!

Andy was rescued from a high-kill animal shelter on Friday and was quickly diagnosed with severe pneumonia. He is receiving oxygen treatments, IV antibiotics and fluids. He is initially responding, so we are very hopeful. However, we have already incurred bills of over $3000 for the first couple of days. Please help us in any way you can!
Please make a donation to help Andy!

Andy is fighting for his life!
Can you please help?

Sunday, August 31, 2008

It's Hell getting old

For the past two weeks, I've been working second shift (4pm to midnight). This is mostly because of my upcoming school schedule; most of my classes and my practicum (internship) hours are during the day. School starts next week and during the day of the past two weeks I've had really nothing to do. So, I got really used to sleeping in, waking up around 10 every morning, working out, going to the jacuzzi and the pool, then having lunch with Ray and finally heading to work around 3pm. I'm more of a night person anyways, so this schedule suits me just fine. Plus, we've been painfully slow at work so I have not had to stay later than midnight and often get to leave early.

The working out thing is new too. I have not worked out for about two years so have put on some weight living the good life: lots of food, lots of booze. So, I cut out the booze (mostly), started eating better and have been working out for the last several weeks. Last Wednesday I hurt myself while working out to Billy Blank's Advanced Taebo DVD. I pulled a muscle or something in my back. It's hell getting old....

I go to a chiropractor on a regular basis since I have a bad back anyway and had my regular standing appointment Saturday at 11:30am. Brainchild that I am, I also made an appointment to have my hair cut and colored - at 8:30am - the same morning. The problem? Ray and I stayed up until 2:30am Friday night. So, I only got about 4 hours of sleep before the alarm went off and I had to get up for all this shit. When I was younger, this would not have been a problem. But now I find it hard to function with this little sleep. It's hell getting old.....

Needless to say, my fuse was pretty short due to sleep deprivation.

So I drag myself up (back still aching), take the dog out, jump in the shower and head out the door....at 7:30am....uggggg. The salon I go to is in Newport Beach, which is about 20 miles away. On a good day it takes 30 minutes to get there, on a bad day an hour. With this being a holiday weekend I decided to play it safe and left an hour early. I did not want to get there late. My hairdresser is sooo awesome at what she does and I did not want to piss her off by causing her to be behind schedule. I usually take Pacific Coast Highway to get there, and it can get pretty jammed up around downtown Laguna Beach (tourists.....ick).

On my way there, I decided to see what was on the radio. One of my biggest complaints about living here is that all the radio stations Suck! I'm more of a hip hop or hard rock kinda girl and they have stations that play that stuff, sure, but it's like this: play one good song, then two crappy songs, then fifteen commercials, then talk about stupid shit, then maybe play another good song. It's frustrating! Well, the usual happened, and I got one good song then had to search for something else. God! Nothing else was on, so I played my Jimmy Buffet's greatest hits tape (yes, tape). This calms me down.

Then comes the Prias parade. Have you guys seen these cars? They are EVERYWHERE here in Cali. Not only are they ugly, but the drivers suck. They may be worse than minivan drivers. And, you can't hear them. You literally could be standing somewhere, and one of these things pulls up beside you and you wouldn't know it! I get behind one of these things, and it's going like 30 in a 40 zone and there is a stupid bus in the other lane. I exhale loudly, roll my eyes and drive probably too close to his bumper. Eventually I get around him. But there are others - all I swear just trying to piss me off!

I finally get through Laguna into a more highway type area and THEN come the bicyclers! God! Now these people are everywhere, too, in Cali. They have bike lanes - even in areas that are 55 mph! And these people usually ride in packs. And, they all have their gay-ass spandex uniforms and pointy helmets on. They show complete disregard for staying in the bike lane, and I am actually very surprised that I don't hear more on the news about bicyclers getting killed by cars. So, I have to swerve (a few times) just to get around these stupid bicyclers.

I get to the salon thirty minutes early and take a 15 minute speed nap in my car. Lindsay, my stylist, does her thing and I'm out of there in about two hours, feeling more refreshed (after several cups of coffee, a shampoo, cut and color). Then I head back the way I came. Traffic was much better this time and there were no annoying bikers. In fact, I had extra time to stop at CVS and pick up some school supplies before heading to my chiropractor appointment.

I get there and the first half hour is electrodes and ultrasound. Then comes the good part - a 30-minute massage! This is really why I continue to go so often. I mean, I do have a bad back, but with a $45 co-pay every time I go, plus a tip for the masseuse, it can get pricey if I go a few times a month. But, I chalk it up to something I do for myself, and only go once a month now. After the appointment, my back feels worse. So I limp out of the office, crawl into my car and head home. In the meantime, I notice that I have a voice message on my phone. It's my sis calling from the OSU stadium where she is watching the Buckeyes kill the fierce Youngstown State Penguins. I had forgotten about the game - oops - and by the time I got home from my morning extravaganza, the game was over. The Bucks won 43-0. Oh well. I'll catch the next one.
So I get home feeling worse and try to take a quick nap (2nd one of the day). This lasts about 30 minutes before Ray gets home and wants to go out for lunch. Great. We head over to this micro brew place called Stadium Brewery and split a pitcher of blueberry beer and get some food. After this, we run some errands and head back home. It's like 4:30 now, and I'm hurting from the lack of sleep and the intense back pain. So, I take another, yes another, nap. The third one of the day. This one, however, lasts 3 hours and I finally wake up at 7:30pm refreshed and ready to start my day...

Damn it's hell getting old.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Dear Poker, I'm just not that into you.

Lately I've been feeling completely unmotivated to blog about anything. I don't play a ton of poker anymore and this was always supposed to be more of a poker blog. I decided to play a small tourney the other day thinking that it would be a nice change of pace and perhaps rekindle my interest in the game. Once into the game, pretty much the usual stuff happened: I got mostly crappy cards, and when I did get good cards nobody called. I guess I played OK because I made it to the final table. Or, maybe it was the fact that there were only 35 people in the entire thing. At the final table I had a pretty short stack and the two biggest stacks were to my left. I ended up getting sick of being pushed around, went all in with AT and got knocked out when big stack to my left had AK. uggggg......

This did nothing to rekindle the romance.

In fact, I swore I would never ever play again. I could have bought a pair of shoes. Well, not really, but that's how I think of poker in general: I would rather buy something I can keep because I know I don't play enough to really improve my game. I don't have the time. I honestly don't have the patience. And, I don't really care to. You all know my interests lie elsewhere.

So, for a while I just did not even want to blog. My so-called "poker" blog was not a poker blog anymore because there was not a lot of poker content. I got lazy and my posts became a regurgitation of facts and stories straight out of cnn.com. I was completely unmotivated to a. play poker and b. blog. I didn't have anything to blog about. Every time I sat down to draft a post, I couldn't think of anything. I didn't want to whine about my schedule or school or how sleepy I was going to be this Fall. I didn't want to blog about poker. And I certainly didn't want to post any more cnn articles. So, I just didn't post anything at all.

While talking to Ray about this, I actually decided that I wanted to abandon the whole blogging thing and give up. He reminded me that I don't have to say the right things all the time and that I don't have to deliver something full of sage wisdom. A blog can just be a journal of sorts. "Write about anything funny or stupid that happened that day", he said. And all the pressure I had put on myself to write something smart or meaningful started to subside.

So rather than trying to be smart or funny, I'm just going to be me. Which, by the way, is hopefully a little smart and a lot funny. I'll try to write more about every day experiences and my journey to become the person I've always wanted to be. This, perhaps speckled with some sage wisdom will be the "new" blog content. And, if I do play some poker along the way, I will certainly include that too.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Olympic Heroes.....

Try JibJab Sendables® eCards today!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Murder Trial, part II

From there, the situation escalates to a verbal confrontation. Both groups begin yelling racial slurs. The defendant yells "skin head" and "red neck" to the guy and calls the girl "slut, bitch and whore". He eggs on the other group, yelling, "do you wanna fight? do you wanna fight?". The other group yells back, calling him "fucking beaner" and tells him to "go back to your country".

The defendant is raging at this point, but his two friends manage to push him back to an area of the parking lot where their other car was. Midway there, the defendant yells out "fucking white people". This infuriates the man in the other group, who throws off his shirt and runs back to the bar to get his friend (the victim). The victim runs out of the bar, also rips off his shirt, and they head over to the car. One guy kicks the car, putting a large dent in it. The defendant gets out of the car, and a fistfight ensues.

Things get a little "fuzzy" at this point, as we heard testimony from several witnesses that contradicts where each person was located. One version says that the defendant and the victim were fighting on the ground. The defendant was on top of the victim and they were both punching each other. The other two white men were also fighting on the ground. The Korean man (friend of the defendant) pulls the defendant off the victim and that fight stops briefly. The defendant sees his friend fighting with the other man, and takes out his knife. He yells "I have a knife", intending to stop the other fight. It works for a moment and he puts the knife away. But, then the girl runs by and tags his friend (defendant's white friend) three times in the head as he is getting off the other guy.

This starts the fighting again, and the Korean man again tries to pull the defendant out of the fighting. The defendant breaks away from him, and runs to another area of the parking lot, towards the other men. He again pulls out his knife. Then, the girl runs by him, hitting him in the head once. He calls her a "f-ing bitch". Her boyfriend, the victim, charges towards him, swinging. The defendant throws what looks like three "round-house" punches. The bouncer of the establishment is close by and yells out "you've been stabbed!". The victim looks down, seeing the stab wounds and says "you f-in stabbed me???" He attempts to walk away, making it only about 20 feet and then collapses. His girlfriend, friend and the bouncer rush over to him, trying to revive him. The friend of the defendant had called 911 moments earlier, but help arrives too late.

After the stabbing, the defendant folded his knife and tried to throw it on the roof of a nearby building. It slid down, falling to the ground, where it stayed until the authorities arrived.

This happened in May of 2007. The victim was 26 at the time, and the defendant was 23; he has been in jail since the incident. The girl was convicted of 2 counts of assault, and is currently serving time in jail, now pregnant with another man's child.

The jury deliberated for two days. We found the defendant guilty of Voluntary Manslaughter. The sentencing is Sept. 26th.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Murder Trial, part I

The trial is over. The verdict has been read. The story is as follows.....

The stabbing murder of Mr. J took place last year during the early morning hours of May 8th, 2007. Two groups of three people, one group of 3 men, and the other group of 2 men and 1 woman, were playing pool at a local pool hall. The first group of 3 men included the defendant, Mr. C, and his two best friends, Mr. P and Mr. Y. Mr. Y. is a large Korean man, and he drank water all night. The second man, Mr. P, is a Caucasian man, who drank one alcoholic beverage at the beginning of the night. The defendant, Mr. C, had between 6 and 8 rum and cokes.

The other group consisted of the Victim, Mr. J, his girlfriend, Miss. L, and their friend, Mr. D. They consumed several drinks throughout the night, including several shots of red-headed slut, several Red Bull and Vodkas, and two pitchers of beer. There were no problems between the two groups while inside the bar that night. After last call, around 12:30am the groups started heading out of the bar. Mr. P headed out first, followed shortly after Mr. C and Mr. Y. They continued to chit-chat outside the bar, and two of the men smoked cigarettes. They were standing by Mr. Y’s car, which was parked just to the right of the door, next to an exit ramp.

Next, Mr. D and Miss L exit. She is riding piggy-back on him, and they are spinning round and round. They then bump into Mr. P accidentally. She dismounts, and they apologize to Mr. P. Now, Mr. P has a pool stick in his right hand. It has been broken down into two pieces, folded and is down at his right side. For some reason, Mr. D notices the pool stick, and says something like “What are you going to do with that pool cue?” Mr. P does not reply. Instead, the defendant, Mr. C responds “P is not doing anything with the pool stick”. The attention of Mr. D and Miss L turns towards the defendant. Mr. D tells Mr. C “fuck you”.

To be continued....

Tao poker

LOLOLOL

I played in Dr. Pauly's tourney tonight and donked out 400-something.
QQ vs. KK......oops!

Ray just shook his head.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Coconut Shrimp Recipe

This is really great!

Coconut Shrimp with Orange Marmalade

2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
2 cups bread crumbs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 large eggs, beaten
24 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
Vegetable oil, for frying

Dipping Sauce:
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1 to 2 tablespoons dark rum

In a large bowl, combine coconut and bread crumbs and season with salt and pepper. Place flour, eggs, and bread crumb mixture into 3 separate bowls. Dredge the shrimp in flour and shake off excess. Next, dip the shrimp thoroughly in the egg and rub against the side of the bowl to lightly remove excess. Finally, coat the shrimp thoroughly with the bread crumb mixture. Lay out the shrimp so they do not touch on a parchment-lined baking sheet or platter until ready to fry. In a large Dutch oven, heat several inches of oil to 350 degrees F. Fry the shrimp in batches until golden brown and cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes per batch. Be careful not to overcrowd shrimp in the oil while frying. Drain on paper towels.

For the Dipping Sauce: heat the marmalade in a small saucepan over low heat. Thin with rum as desired.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Last Lecture

(CNN) -- Randy Pausch, the professor whose "last lecture" became a runaway phenomenon on the Internet and was turned into a best-selling book, died Friday of pancreatic cancer, Carnegie Mellon University announced on its Web site.

Pausch, 47, a computer science professor, delivered the lecture, "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams," at Carnegie Mellon in September 2007, a month after being told he had three to six months to live because his cancer had returned.

The lanky, energetic Pausch talked about goals he had accomplished, like experiencing zero gravity and creating Disney attractions, and those he had not, including becoming a professional football player.

He used rejections he was handed when he applied for jobs at Disney to comment on the importance of persistence.

"The brick walls are there for a reason ... to show us how badly we want something," he said. "Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don't want it badly enough. They're there to stop the other people."

Thursday, July 24, 2008

On Jury Duty

I've been selected for jury duty.
It's a murder trial.
Can't say anything about it now, but will let you know what's up latah.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Ray's Birthday

Tomorrow is Ray's birthday!
I took him out to a nice dinner on Saturday at the Salt Creek Grill in Dana Point.
Sunday we went on Ray's brother's boat for some ocean fishing.
We both got a few nibbles, but weren't able to pull anything up.
As part of Ray's birthday gifts, I got him a new fishing poll. He was so excited!!
And, we got a tutorial on how to tie knots from the guy at SportMart.
Good times.
I got a little sick on the boat, but was able to keep my lunch down. Whew!
Tomorrow I have a special little surprise for Ray.....

Next Saturday we are hosting an OCPT home game.
It's a standard $20+Rebuy special event structure.
Cards are in the air at 6PM.
Look here for info on the record breaking attendance and prize pool the last time we hosted an event.

I'm in charge of the food again.
This time, I think I will make the meatballs I made last time, a sweet and sour keilbasa dish, maybe a pasta, and perhaps some pizza bagels. Plus the regular stuff like chips and a cheese plate with crackers. If anyone knows of any other quick and easy appetizers, lemme know. I'm alway game to try something new!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Practicum

I have my practicum (mini internship - 16 hours a week for a year) assignment for this fall/spring/summer.
I'll be working at the Intercommunity Counseling Center, in Whittier, doing Psychological testing. I'll basically be doing cognitive testing, which determines IQ, information processing speed, abstract reasoning, etc, maybe some learning disability testing, including ADHD and reading/math problems.

I'll also be doing personality testing with the MMPI, the PAI and the Rorschach.
These tests tell us more about how the individual performs on an intimate level - personality type, tendencies; potentially why people do what they do.

Weeeeeeeeeeeee.....grades

Getting good grades is FUN.
I got an A from Dr. A-(and I didn't even have to wear The Hoochie Shirt)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Weeeeeeeeeeeee!!

Well, not sure it's fun. But it's a lot of hard work. And it feels goooood.
Lana - to answer your previous question, yes, I would post if I got a B or C.
If I get anything lower, I'm O-U-T of the program.
Let's just hope I have the strength and will to work my ass off to get more A's.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Prayers, please

I'll continue the Vegas trip report after I finish my final paper tomorrow.
But for now, our brother needs us.
If you are the praying kind, please include them in your prayers.
If not, please keep them in your thoughts.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Vegas Day 2


Saturday morning I headed down to the spa for my massage/detox/relaxation.

After about 3 bottles of water my name was called by this tiny little Japanese woman who announced she would be my therapist. She chatted rapidly as we walked to the massage room, and I simply nodded my head several times as I could not understand half of what she was saying. This little lady proceeded to give me the best massage I think I've ever had! I get massages on a pretty regular basis - part of physical therapy for a bad back - and this one was truly amazing! I will definitely go back to her the next time I'm in Vegas. She even massaged my scalp - I love that - and ended with a eucalyptus wrap on my feet, and at my temples while she massaged them too.

I also jumped into the jacuzzi for a while. It was very hot and bubbly. I was the only one there (good thing, cause I forgot my suit). After my morning of relaxation, I headed back up to the room to meet my hubby. He was happily blogging and playing on line cash games.

Before catching a cab to the Caesars, I wanted to return those horrible shoes I bought the night before. Luckily, we spotted the same store, Shooz, at the Paris. We went in and I explained that I had bought these shoes the night before at the Venetian, I hardly wore them, and they are painfully uncomfortable. The snobby sales girl raised her eyebrow at me, as if to say, "ya, you probably wore these out partying last night, and can't afford them, so want to return them." (she and I hit it off immediately, as I called her Bio-tch several times in my head). She called her manager over and she looked at the bottom of the shoes, shaking her head and smirking, she said "Oh, these have been worn. We can only give you an in-store credit. And, Oh, since they've been worn, we'll have to adjust the price down". BITCH! Anyway, I looked around the store and found this really cute Guess handbag. But, it had a little scratch on the front. I asked the first girl if she had another one in the back, and without checking, she said, "no, I'm sorry, we don't". She did ofter to try and "clean" the scratch off. This only made it worse. I asked her if she "could adjust the price down" because of the scratch, and she said "no, because someone else might want to buy it." BITCH! At this point I'm in tears, frustrated about being treated this way, and sick because I spent the money foolishly the night before. I basically decided to keep the original shoes and left that store. I will never buy from them again.

After this great experience, Ray and I went for lunch. He had promised me that we would have sushi this weekend, and we did. We ended up at Ichiban @ Bally's. We had a great little waitress! I ordered a glass of plum wine, and when she brought it, it actually had a small, unripened plum in it. It kinda looked like a brain, and made me laugh, dissolving the tension and frustration from that stupid shoe store - aaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh back to my Zen place.

We took a quick little detour to the Rio to meet up with Pauly, Cali Jen and to check on F-Train. Pauly was awesome, as usual, and was on his way out to a concert. Before he left, he introduced us to Cali Jen. She and Ray talked business for a second, then Ray and Pauly chatted. Jen and I joked about poker, the players, getting into the Main Event, etc., girl-talking until Ray was ready to go. We said our good-byes and headed out.

We went over to Caesars from there to see how everyone was doing in the noon $340 Megastack tournament. We got there around 5:30pm to find out only Astin and Weak_Player were still alive riding short stacks. Ray played cash games, and I continued my "luxuriation" and went shopping. I ended up at the best little lingerie shop in the world. Yes, I made a purchase. Ray was in heaven. This is one purchase I will not be returning. We headed back to our room @ the Paris...

When we got there, we discovered a cold bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries that were delivered seemingly several hours prior. The ice was almost completely melted but the bottle was still cold. I immediately told Ray that it was probably from Naida at Bodog. But, since there was no card or note I got on the phone to room service to identify the culprit. Evidentally, they had no record of the delivery, and therefore no name. They said to "enjoy" the mix-up (this was no cheap bottle of champagne, by the way).

Since we were dead tired, we decided to save it for the morning and have mimosas with breakfast in the room. However, I couldn't resist the urge to take in one of the strawberries. It put a BIG smile on my face and sent me happily off to dreamland.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Vegas Trip Report - Day 1

We got up pretty early on Friday morning, finished packing, loaded the car with our luggage and were on our way. We first had to drop off the baby donkey, and he was NOT happy about leaving his Mamma! The guy at the "Pet Hotel" had to drag little Smokkee away, and as he was being dragged away, he gave me the saddest look....... it broke my heart!

Once that was over, Ray and I headed to the airport. The flight was over in the blink of an eye and we were in Vegas. We got to our hotel quickly as well (the room was awesome and we got a view of the strip and the Bellagio fountains!), unpacked and freshened up, then headed to the Venetian, as planned. As soon as we walked up to the poker room we ran into Bayne, CK, LJ and VinNay. Later, Cmitch stopped to chat. I made Bayne promise to come find me if he hit the craps tables up again - I wanted to check out his method of play. Ray and I have been playing on the Bodog online Casino recently and I wanted to compare notes with Bayne. But, I never saw Bayne again.....

Here's a view from our room:

Ray sat down for some cash games and I walked around the floor seeking out bloggers. I saw Astin in the distance and nodded a hello, then spotted sprstoner closerby and headed over to chat. He was about to leave for the 2nd chance at the Rio, so our chat was a quick one. After he left, I headed back to Ray's table. He had been moved to another table that included Don, Weak, Cmitch, CK and later Astin. I pulled up a chair and observed the table happily (sipping my free white wine) until Ray had to leave for his 8pm tourney. After that I headed out for some shopping. I found this little shoe boutique (Shooz) and headed inside. After browsing, I found the cutest pair of shoes! I tried them on, bought them right away and headed back to Ray's table to show him my prize. On the way there, I stopped to change into them first. Once I got to Ray's table, I proudly showed off my new purchase and he barely batted an eye at them - humph!



"The Shoes":

As I was sitting with Ray during his tourney, I was glancing around and recognized this guy walking down the hall past me. I excitedly shouted "Hey! Are you Eugene Todd? (he grinned and shook his head yes) My husband is obsessed with you! Would you mind saying hello?" He jumped the tourney rope and struck up a conversation with Ray (who was beaming). I think that was the highlight of Ray's trip.

After this and some more walking around (feet hurting more and more), I met CK, Don, Weak, Cmitch and Astin for dinner. It was great to actually sit down and talk to everyone without having to worry about interrupting a hand. The food was great too! After dinner, I packaged up my leftovers, knowing my hubby would be hungry, and we all left. Everyone else called it a night and I headed back to Ray's tourney (feet hurting like a bitch now). He busted out shortly after. I changed back into my other shoes, cursing the new ones, and we headed back to our hotel to call it a night.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Tomorrow! tomorrow!


Tomorrow we leave for the Las Vegas!

Drop the baby donkey off at 11am, get to the airport by noon for lunch and a bloody mary.
Then, fly away!


See you there!

Incest dungeon teen wants to see ocean

UPDATE ON THIS CASE:
(CNN) -- The 19-year-old woman whose hospitalization exposed a shocking Austrian incest case is recovering well and wants to see the ocean and a pop concert, her doctors and a family lawyer said Wednesday.

Dr. Albert Reiter, who treated Kerstin, is confident Kerstin will make a full recovery in time.

She and other children who were held captive for years are slowly adapting to modern life, they said. Kerstin Fritzl, whom doctors placed in an artificial coma after she was admitted to a hospital in April for multiple organ failure, is now well enough to speak, stand and walk with assistance, her doctors said. Doctors said that "little novelties" such as seeing a cloud go by are now big events for the former captives.

Kerstin has said she wants to see the ocean and go to a concert by British singer Robbie Williams, said Dr. Berhold Kepplinger, director of the clinic where the family is living. He described how excited Kerstin was to hear Robbie Williams songs in her hospital room and said she was moving around to the music so much that doctors had to quiet her down.

The two parts of her family -- those who were locked in a basement, like Kerstin, and those who lived above ground, apparently unaware of the abuse of their mother and siblings -- are getting to know each other again, the doctors and the family's lawyer said.

"Kerstin is the oldest daughter of an incestuous relationship between Elisabeth, 43, and Elisabeth's father, Josef Fritzl, 73, according to police. He is awaiting trial. Police say he confessed to holding Elisabeth captive since 1984 and raping her repeatedly, fathering seven children with her. Six of the children survived.

Kerstin and two of her brothers, ages 18 and 5, had spent their entire lives trapped in the cellar with their mother, never seeing daylight. A television was their only contact with the outside world.The other three children Josef Fritzl fathered with Elisabeth were taken as infants to live above ground with Fritzl and his wife, who says she had no idea her daughter was being held captive.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

BoDonkey TOC tonight!!

TOC Qualifiers listed 1st-18th:

InstantTragedy

Grand Prize: $12,000 WSOP* Prize Package with Team Bodog
2nd: T$540
3rd: T$379
4th: T$270
5th: T$109
GOOD LUCK TO ALL!! (especially Smokkee)

Monday, June 09, 2008

Vegas in 4

We head to Vegas this Friday!
I'm very excited and have already been planning what I'm going to wear, and what shoes I need to pack. I know much of the time will be spent hanging out in poker rooms, but I don't care!
I love to dress up, and it's my vacation damn it! Anyway, not too many blogger peeps will be out there, so the gatherings will be smaller. But I will still take lots of pictures!

While we are there, Ray plans to play some tournaments and cash games.
I may even play some as well.
Most likely though I will spend my money on the spa or shoes. lol
We are staying at the Paris Hotel, which I'm pretty excited about.
I've always wanted to stay there.
They have some really cool shops, including a wine shop.
We will probably spend some time at the Rio also.
I don't mind this because they also have a wine shop, and they have wine and cheese tastings.
Hmmmm.....do I like wine?

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Thus ended one of the most horrible crimes ever committed against a single victim

Ray and I watched this movie last night.
It's a story about two girls who are in a car accident that not only claims the lives of their parents, but maims one of the girls. They are placed in the "care" of their Aunt Ruth after the accident.

It contains instances of shockingly violent and sadistic child abuse. The worst part is, it's based on true events.
This story haunts me - Child abuse is such a disturbing issue for me - especially at this level.

There is no reason, no excuse, no explanation for this other than it happened at the hands of a sick, psychotic, f-ed up bitch of a woman who has no soul and who now rots in Hell.

Here's the summary:
Inspired by true events, this thriller set in 1958 follows the harrowing story of two adolescent girls (Blythe Auffarth, Madeline Taylor), who upon losing their parents in an accident are sent to live with their Aunt Ruth (Blanche Baker), a sadistic psychopath. Unbeknownst to the residents of the small New Jersey suburb, the girls endure unthinkable punishment at the hands of their aunt and three cousins.

Some information about the real story of The Torturing Death of Sylvia Marie Likens:

On October 26, 1965, Indianapolis police answered a call saying that a girl had died. The call came from a pay telephone in front of a Shell station in a poor section of the city. The caller was a teenaged boy whose voice had not finished changing into that of an adult man. He sounded very nervous and directed the police to the address, 3850 East New York Street, at which they would find the dead female.

When the cops got to the dingy, rundown, clapboard home to which the anonymous caller had directed them, they found the emaciated dead body of 16-year-old Sylvia Marie Likens. She was covered with bruises and small wounds, later revealed to be cigarette and match burns that numbered over 100. There were also large areas where the outer layer of skin had peeled off. Likens also had a large letter "3" branded on her chest. However, the most remarkable injuries, by far, were the words in block letters that had been burned directly onto her stomach: "I'M A PROSTITUTE AND PROUD OF IT!"

Thus ended one of the most horrible crimes ever committed against a single victim.

The crime had been perpetrated by an informal group of teenagers and children, some as young as 11 and 12, led by a 37-year-old woman. That woman's name was Gertrude Baniszewski.

Sleeping dogs


Ray has often commneted on how much baby Smokkee sleeps.
I found this article about dogs' sleeping patterns:


There's no doubt about it: dogs sure know how to sleep. The amount of time spent napping varies from dog to dog and depends on the dog's age and personality. Counting little naps and longer snoozes, most dogs sleep about fourteen hours a day. Nobody is sure why dogs sleep so much. The amount of sleep that an animal needs depends upon its species.

Horses and cows may sleep only three or four hours daily, because they require long hours of grazing to supply their bodies with sufficient food. Bats and opossums may sleep closer to 20 hours. The various breeds of dogs also seem to have different sleep requirements. Some very large breeds of dogs, like Newfoundlands, Saint Bernards, and mastiffs, often spend a great deal of their lives sleeping – perhaps up to sixteen or even eighteen hours a day. For this reason they were often referred to as "mat dogs," because they could always be found lying in front of the fireplace, much like a giant, furry hearth mat.

Dogs sleep more than us, but they wake more frequently than we do. How much and when they sleep depends on the level of activity in their environment. A dog living as a pet in the home is likely to sleep more than a dog that works for a living, like a search and rescue dog or a dog working on a farm. Dogs are lucky – they are able to adjust their sleep pattern so that they can be awake when there is something to do, and asleep the rest of the time. Of course, today's modern indoor dog sometimes sleeps out of boredom.

You can help your pet by providing plenty of stimulation during the day – this can be in the form of toys, a companion, or plenty of walks and playtime with you. If he has enough to do during the day, he may stay awake when the sun is up and sleep at night when you do.

Sleep Patterns
Dogs have the same sleep patterns as humans. When your dog first goes to sleep, he enters the slow wave or quiet phase of sleep. He lies still and is oblivious to his surroundings. His breathing slows, his blood pressure and body temperature drop, and his heart rate decreases. After about ten minutes, your dog enters the rapid eye movement (REM) or active stage of sleep. He rolls his eyes under his closed lids, he may bark or whine, or may jerk his legs. During this stage, the brain activity is similar to that seen during the dreaming sleep of humans, and is evidence that dogs have dreams. Incidentally, adult dogs spend about 10 to 12 percent of their sleeping time in REM sleep. Puppies spend a much greater proportion of their sleep time in this type of sleep, no doubt compacting huge quantities of newly acquired data.

You may think your dog will sleep anywhere, but some dogs are very particular about where they sleep. In the wild, dogs sleep in dens, and your dog may seek out a sheltered place in your home, such as under a bed or in a closet. You may notice your dog circling or pawing at his sleeping place before he settles. This is to make a comfortable, den-like depression in which to sleep (even though it doesn't have much impact on a short pile rug). You can make a comfortable bed for your dog or choose from the variety of plush beds at your pet store. Some people love snuggling up to their dogs at night and there is no question dogs love sharing their owners' bed.

Advocates of this method say it strengthens the human-canine bond – not to mention the comfort and warmth your dog can provide for you. However, some animal behaviorists say this can upset the sometimes precarious hierarchy, because the dog may get delusions of grandeur. In other words, he may think he is higher on your household's social scale than some other members of the family. Four-on-the-floor may be the order of the day for some of these charac

Thursday, June 05, 2008

P.S. I Love You - Trailer

Ray and I saw this a few weeks ago.
I loved it, and so did he.
So, it's not just some chick flick!
Anyway, it has a really deep message and hits home personally. Highly Recommended!

Holly Kennedy (Hilary Swank), a young widow living in Dublin, has just lost her beloved husband Gerry (Gerard Butler) to a brain tumor. Inconsolable, Holly finds that Gerry left for her a series of letters to help cope with the grief. As months pass, Holly discovers new messages from Gerry encouraging her to go on living. And while Holly's friends fear the letters will mire her in the past, they, in fact, give her strength for the future

GREAT Winery!


I LOVE this vineyard! I visited their tasting room when Ray and I were in Santa Barbara for my birthday a year and a half ago. I joined their wine club then, and have loved every single wine I have gotten from them. And, its all organic. I highly recommend it!!

A blurb from their web page:
Presidio Vineyard & Winery’s goal is to produce handcrafted ultra-premium varietal wines from our certified organic and Biodynamic® estate vineyard (the Presidio Vineyard) located west of the Santa Rita Hills in Santa Barbara County. Over the years, Presidio has found that using chemical fertilizers leads to unbalanced wines with undesirable aromatics. In the Presidio Vineyard, organic and Biodynamic® techniques are practiced by using composts to create a healthy and more balanced soil, accentuating the desirable aromatics of the fruit. Presidio designed a trellising system unique to Santa Barbara County that positions the vine closer to the ground to maximize the refracted heat reaching the grape cluster. Presidio utilizes a French training system known as “Guyot Simple”, a Burgundian model incorporating a 9-bud cane to restrict yields and featuring increased vine density. Unlike most California vineyards, the Presidio Vineyard is planted on a 3’ x 7’ spacing with a plant density of 2,074 vines per acre. Increased vine density creates root competition and higher quality ultra-premium fruit. Additionally, the orientation of the rows is north/south to maximize the photosynthetic process by the sun’s movement. Presidio strongly believes in matching varietals to their preferred climactic regions. The Presidio Vineyard’s cool climate is particularly well-suited for Pinot Noir, Syrah, and Chardonnay.

Congrats to Smokkee!!

Way to go baby! I'm so proud of you for winning the Bodog Tourney this past Tuesday!

Monday, June 02, 2008

Hellllllooooooooooooo??

Has anyone seen my new site?
You no likey?

Hmph.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Biggest Bounty Ever - I gotta play this!

The BIGGEST Bounty EVER in the history of blogger tournaments will be placed on the head of $mokkee, the Bodog blogger tournament host on Tuesday June 3, 2008.

That's right, Bodog is adding an extra T$270 in value to Tuesday's June 3rd World Series of Poker qualifier tournament!

The lucky poker blogger to eliminate $mokkee will be rewarded with a seat in Bodog's WSOP* Semifinal 5 Seat Guaranteed Tournament to be held on June 8 at 3:15 pm ET.







Details at World Series of Poker qualifier tournament.

If you are new to Bodog, please sign up at http://poker.bodoglife.com/

Thursday, May 29, 2008

New blog

Hi! Had to update my blog to the "new" blogger version in order to make it view correctly in Firefox, what-not. The biggest thing I hate about blogger is that they have sucky templates - nothing creative or artistic. So, what you see is what I have come up with. Not exactly happy with it yet, so we'll see. My sis is working on a banner for me and that will hopefully be better.

We head to Las-Vegahhhhsss in a few weeks! It will be fun to see those of you who will be there and finally have some down time. Was with the family this past week in Charlotte, and that was very fun! But, I was on babysitting duty much of the time! I don't mind this, but, it included all the unpleasant things that an adoring Aunt should not have to face: dirty diapers. Whatever happened to spoiling them and sending them home? Uggg.....

I joke. I love my little nephew Jaiden, and he was TONS of fun! It's amazing how fast they grow up! He is so cute and funny to watch! What a sponge of information! He giggles at the faces I make, and then tries to imitate them. He was picking up these tickets for a fish fry (church thing), and stuffing them under his chin and walking around! THEN, he grabbed my sunglasses and put them around his waist! OMG - toooooo funny!!

More pics and trip updates later!
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