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Surprise Me Sunday

We are constantly reading around here.  Ariel is more of a book reader these days than I am, simply because she has more free time than I do.  She usually has at least two or three novels going at once and has no problem keeping the storylines straight.  Me, I have to read one at a time and my biggest problem is that time comes to a screeching halt when I am in the midst of a good read.  Laundry?  No time for that.  Dinner?  Order take-out.  Sleep?  Who needs it?  :D

So it was quite the shock tonight when I asked Ariel what she was reading these days.  (They just finished Number the Stars in school and I had ordered Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl for her (gotta love Scholastic!) because I thought it would tie in well.  Unfortunately, she got a little too much exposure to the Holocaust and now doesn’t have the desire to read more about it.  And that’s fine, because it is a very strong topic for most of us.)  She replied, with a start, “Nothing!”  And immediately went to her bookshelf to find a new book.

She found Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt.  I had also ordered it from Scholastic.  It earned 4 out of 5 stars from Amazon reviewers, so I have high expectations of it.  I’ll let you know what she thinks!

 

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt

And lest you think less of me, I *did* just download the Audible version of The Book Thief and plan on listening to it while on my treadmill this week.  I gotta get back with that and am hoping the bribe of a good book will be just the kickstart I need!

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Okay, there’s not much better at least to me than an ice cold Diet Coke.  Except I just heard of having a Coke in a bottle made of ice.  Ummmm, yeah.  It would be ice cold down to the last sip!!  What a brilliant idea!!

Frozen Coke Bottle

 

And it would be eco-friendly too!  No glass to recycle (or end up in the trash if folks didn’t recycle it–grrr….)…. I LOVE IT!!  Now to get Coke to sell them in the US….  Currently, they’re just for sale in Colombia (yes, the country!), but we can hope, right?!?

Want more details…. or to convince Coke to try it here?  Here’s their website.  And in the meantime, love this video promoting the Frozen Coke Bottle!!

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There must be a bazillion ways to cook corn on the cob—and they are all posted online!!

I found a method that really works for us, since I abhor all those darn silks…. and having to pull them all off makes me nuts and not want to serve fresh corn as much as I should.

Here’s Ken describing his super-easy method:

 

Isn’t that amazing?  And we just did it tonight!  IT REALLY WORKS!! I was so surprised that I hadn’t heard about it before now!

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Ariel pulled out her viola today to practice… and something struck me funny.  It was when she was applying rosin to her bow. I *know* the difference between a viola and a violin/fiddle, but I couldn’t stop singing “The Devil Went Down to Georgia”… slightly off-key ’cause that’s how I sing…. and then I realized she wasn’t giving me that scared look because I was off-tune…. it was because I was singing ALL. THE. WORDS. to a song she’d never heard before.

And now, I’ve had to look up the lyrics so she could sing along….as well look on YouTube for a non-expletive version to play for her.

Her surprise:  that I knew all the words to a song she didn’t know.

My surprise:  that I didn’t know all of the words that she thought I did!!

I did forget some of the words, although I didn’t let her know that! And I don’t know that I ever knew that the song referred to some old Appalachian songs.   I never caught those titles before.  “Fire on the Mountain,” “House of the Rising Sun,” and “Chicken in the Bread Pan” are all well-known folktales that Charlie Daniels mentions in his lyrics.

Here’s a version of the song, in case you’re interested.  And, yes, the objectionable word is bleeped out.  ;)

 

 

Did you know ALL of the words and what they’re referring to?

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I *knew* I wasn’t the only one!  Thanks, Jessica, for affirming my belief!!

 

What if I NEED that empty toilet paper roll later?

 

Thanks, Pinterest, for validating my {ahem!} not-quite-hoarding-but-really-close tendencies!

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I probably shouldn’t be surprised, but I am.  I had not heard of Puppy Bowl before.

It’s a cute show, full of cute puppies playing and roughhousing, complete with a lined field, hedgehog cheerleaders, sunken waterbowls and a lot of ball shaped toys.

 

Here’s a taste:

 

 

 

Puppy Bowl will air most of tonight and some tomorrow.  Enjoy!

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cute cow Christmas lights, ornaments, stockings, and books

 

How/when did cows become a Christmas symbol?  Well, I don’t know that they are an official symbol, but cute bovines sure have been incorporated into some great holiday books and decor.  How adorable are those cow ornaments?!

Sources:

It’s a Cow Christmas Audio CD

Holy Cow Christmas:  Texas Style! Audio CD

Cow (and Goat and Horse) Plush Christmas Farm Animals

Kurt Adler Resin Ornaments (set of 3)

Cow Christmas Ornament

30″ Pre-Lit LED Outdoor Chenille Angel Cow Yard Art Decoration

Santa Cows book by Cooper Edens

Kurt Adler Indoor/Outdoor Cow Light Set

Cowhide Christmas Stocking

 

Surprised at the variety of holiday products featuring cows?  I sure am!!  ;)

 

 

 

 

 

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Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean

What a pleasant surprise!!  I just found out that Royal Caribbean is offering a Barbie Cruise!  How much fun is that?!

Available to book starting in October, the actual cruises will begin in January.

Imagine the fabulousness of the Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean:

Complete room decor in Barbie’s signature pink (and lots of great take-home gifts)

Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean

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A Mermaid Dance Class…

Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean

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A Tea Party (with pink cupcakes, of course!)…

Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean .

A Fashion Designer Workshop…

Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean .

And a Fashion Show!

Barbie Premium Experience on Royal Caribbean .

I’m totally in love with this idea and know that Barbie fans of all ages will enjoy the Barbie fun, even though it is designed specially for girls 4-11.

I guess the biggest surprise (to me, anyway) is that this wasn’t created before!

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September holidays, events, and remembrances

Who knew there were so many strange observances and holidays in September???  Not me, that’s for sure.

I mean, I understand Labor Day.  It’s been around for a while.  And the newer-instituted-but-very-important Patriots Day on September 11.  That makes sense to me too.

But National Beheading Day on September 2?  (That’s today, BTW.)  Ummm… is that a holiday/observance/event designated on your calendar?  I’m really surprised by that one.

Because I was so surprised by National Beheading Day, I just had to do a little bit of research to see what else September might be hiding in its 30 days.

And… OMG!  There’s a lot crammed into this seemingly boring month.  Take a peek!

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September Observances, Events, and Holidays 2012

  • National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month
  • National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
  • National Potato Month
  • National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
  • Fall Hat Month
  • National Wilderness Month
  • Whole Grains Month
  • National Yoga Month
  • Little League Month
  • National Honey Month
  • National School Success Month
  • California Wine Month
  • Self Improvement Month
  • National Chicken Month
  • National Blood Cancer Awareness Month
  • National Biscuit Month
  • Women of Achievement Month
  • National ADHD Awareness Month
  • National Cholesterol Education
  • Better Breakfast Month
  • National Head Lice Prevention Month
  • National Organic Harvest Month
  • Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
  • National Rice Month
  • International Square Dancing Month
  • National Sewing Month
  • National Mushroom Month
  • National Mind Mapping Month
  • National Courtesy Month
  • National Papaya Month
  • National Piano Month
  • National Guide Dog Month
  • Baby Safety Month
  • National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month
  • Library Card Sign-Up Month
  • National Bourbon Heritage Month
  • National Preparedness Month
  • Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 – October 15)
  • Classical Music Month

Week-Long Observances

  • 1st Week–Child Injury Prevention Week (every September 1-7)
  • 2nd Week–National Waffle Week
  • 2nd Week–International Housekeepers Week
  • 2nd Week–Biscuit and Gravy Week
  • 2nd Week–Vegetarian Awareness Week
  • 3rd Week–National Farm Animals Awareness Week
  • 3rd Week–National Flower Week
  • 4th Week–Equal Parents’ Week
  • 4th Week–National Dog Week
  • 4th Week–National Wild Rice Week
  • 4th Week–National Roller Skating Week

Day-Long Observances

1. Emma M. Nutt Day (she was the first woman telephone operator)

1.  National No Rhyme (Nor Reason) Day

2. National Beheading Day

2.  International Bacon Day (the Saturday before Labor Day)

2.  National “Grits for Breakfast” Day

2.  VJ Day (surrender ceremony aboard the USS Missouri formally ended WWII)

3.  Labor Day (always the first Monday of September)

3.  US Bowling League Day

3.  National Blueberry Popsicle Day

3. Skyscraper Day

3.  National Welsh Rarebit Day

4. National Newspaper Carrier Day

4.  Eat an Extra Dessert Day

4.  National Macadamia Nut Day

5. Be Late for Something Day

5.  Cheese Pizza Day

6. National Fight Procrastination Day

7. Neither Rain nor Snow Day

7.  National Acorn Squash Day

8. Pardon Day

8.  International Literacy Day

8. National Date Nut Bread Day

9.  Grandparent’s Day (1st Sunday after Labor Day)

9.  National Pet Memorial Day (2nd Sunday in September)

9. Teddy Bear Day

9.  Weinerschnitzel Day

10. National Swap Ideas Day

10.  Sewing Machine Day

10.  TV Dinner Day

11. No News is Good News Day

11.  Patriots Day

11.  Make Your Bed Day

11.  “I Want To Start My Own Business” Day

12.  National Chocolate Milkshake Day

12.  National Video Games Day

13. National Defy Superstition Day

13.  Fortune Cookie Day

13.  National Peanut Day

13.  Snack a Pickle Time

13.  Positive Thinking Day

13. Uncle Sam Day

14. National Cream-filled Donut Day

15. National Felt Hat Day

15.  Make a Hat Day

16. Step-Family Day

16.  Mayflower day

16.  Mexican Independence Day

16.  National Women’s Friendship Day (3rd Sunday in September)

16.  Working Parents Day

16.  National Guacamole Day

16.  National Wife Appreciation Day

16. National Play-doh Day

16.  National Cinnamon Raisin Bread Day

16.  National Collect Rocks Day

17. National Apple Dumpling Day

17.  Citizenship Day

17.  Constitution Day

18.  National Cheeseburger Day

18.  Rice Krispies Treat Day

19. National Butterscotch Pudding Day

19.  International Talk Like A Pirate Day

19.  National Butterscotch Pudding Day

20. National Punch Day

21. International Banana Festival

21.  International Peace Day

21.  Miniature Golf Day

21.  POW/MIA Recognition Day (3rd Friday of September)

21.  World Gratitude day

22. Dear Diary Day

22.  Business Women’s Day

22.  National Ice Cream Cone Day

22.  Elephant Appreciation Day

22.  National White Chocolate Day

22.  International Rabbit Day (4th Saturday in September)

22.  Oktoberfest Begins

22.  National Hobbit Day

23. Dogs in Politics Day

23.  National Checkers Day

24. Festival of Latest Novelties

24.  National Cherries Jubilee Day

25. National Comic Book Day

25.  National One Hit Wonder Day

26.  Johnny Appleseed Day

26.  National Pancake Day

27. Crush a Can Day

27.  Ancestor Appreciation Day

27.  National Thank You Day

28. Ask a Stupid Question Day

28.  Drink Beer Day

28.  National Good Neighbor Day

28.  Native American Day (4th Friday of the month)

28.  National Strawberry Cream Pie Day

29. Poisoned Blackberries Day

29.  Confucius Day

29.  National Coffee Day

29.  Happy Goose Day

30.  Chewing Gum Day

30. National Mud Pack Day

Did you know that some of these holidays existed?  Me neither!

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(photo credit:  Ariel, who created it with the awesome iPhone app, CamWow)

 

 

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I never expected it.  Ever.

Mustaches.

Really?  Mustaches????

I honestly can’t think of any males in our lives that have mustaches (or any facial hair even) so I guess maybe it’s the appeal of the unknown.

And not just any mustaches.  Handlebar mustaches.  On duct tape.

Mustache Duct Tape or Mustache Duck Tape

Oh, yes.

It all started innocuously enough.  A friend at camp offered her a small strip of tape.  Just enough for a bracelet.  But more than enough to get her enthralled.  Enchanted.  Enamored.  Addicted, even, some might say.  Oh, no, my daughter couldn’t possibly be addicted to duct tape.  Not my daughter.

This is a moment we will look back on and say, “This is when it started.”

Well, we’ll say that if we can still talk. I’m kind of afraid that if we don’t hold an intervention soon, we’ll allll be covered with duct tape.  Especially our mouths.  Decorative duct tape, no less.  But still duct tape.

And I’ll be thinking to myself how utterly surprised — how completely caught off-guard — I was by that one bracelet.

Mustaches, really?

Mustaches.

Really.

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