How I Spent My Spring Vacation – Or At Least I Didn’t go to the Emergency Room

Mother Nature finally came through for us. The weather here has been so damp and dank, with rain and unseasonably chilly temperatures for so long, I was beginning to fear that summer would never come. Our vacation was rapidly approaching and we had not made any plans yet, no destination in mind, we just knew that we did not want to stick around here for more misery. As the first vacation day approached, the weather forecast started looking a bit more promising with temperatures ranging in the eighties and lots of sunshine, so in the end we decided to stay here and go exploring locally.

Our first day was a trip to Woodinville, for a day of wine tasting. Hey, I have my priorities. And yes, we tasted many nice wines and bought a few bottles. Our second day we included the dogs on our day trip. We drove over to Point Defiance on Puget Sound and let the dogs run around and play in the ocean. One day we did some yard work and finished our newly built and planted raised beds. We drove down to Olympia and went to Tumwater Falls Park. It was a bit of a disappointment, I was hoping for bigger falls and a longer hike, but that was not the reality. The falls were small and the trek around them was short, maybe a mile at most.

We took a longer day trip with the dogs to the Green River Nature Area O’Grady Trail and had a longer hike. The trail was partially a road access that could handle cars and trucks with offshoot trails that were dirt paths wide enough for a horse or single file hikers. The trails had nice carved wooden signs that not only showed where the trail went but also had a “you are here” notation on each so we could place ourselves on the trail and where in the area we wanted to go. We found a homemade Tic Tac Toe Board carved into a stump complete with rocks for markers. We hiked down to the Green River, saw how fast it was running and decided it was not a good idea to let the dogs go in. We would have to drive to Puget Sound to save them.

To finish off our vacation, we decided to go kayaking. The dilemma was where? We thought about Point Defiance Park and go kayaking in Puget Sound, but common sense won out. I had only been kayaking once before, on a nice calm lake where the boats had to have a motor no larger than fifteen horse power and Mitch has never been kayaking. Out here the sky is the limit, plus there is the tides to consider. We talked it out and decided a lake would be safer and a better first time experience. We checked on kayak rentals around Lake Washington and found one in Bellevue. We got there before the rental office opened, about thirty minutes early and found a line had already formed. We rented two single kayaks so we could each experience paddling and maneuvering our own kayak, plus I watched other people in double kayaks and most weren’t paddling in unison, one paddle would be up and one paddle would be down, the kayak going nowhere.

The water was still very chilly, around sixty degrees or so, but the sky was clear no clouds for as far as the eye could see. We set off heading north crossing under the I-90 bridge to run along the coast gawking at houses on the shore. Most were very large and new, but there were some older smaller homes tucked in between the larger estate homes. We watched the boats go up and down the main channel, a few smaller boats but most were larger vessels, suitable for the ocean and felt the wake of each one. I was glad we chose a lake to start on first. After about forty-five minutes we turned around and headed in the opposite direction to see what was on the other side of the bridge and farther south. We headed into the back of the cove and gawked at some more houses.

We decided to call it a day and head back to the boat launch. We talked about how much we enjoyed this and as I headed toward the launch I made a comment about shopping for a kayak online. I got no response, so I looked around and couldn’t find Mitch. He was right there and then he was gone. I slowed my kayak and turned around to look for him and saw in the water about three hundred feet or so, his kayak flipped upside down. I looked next to his kayak and there was his head bobbing beside it. I paddled as fast I could and as I got closer, I could see him hanging on, so at least he was conscious. As I got close enough to talk to him, I asked what he did. He answered he didn’t know, not that succinctly but with more descriptive adjectives and adverbs. I asked if he was okay, but was not sure how I could help get the kayak righted without rolling myself, and not being that selfless, I didn’t offer to help right it. That’s what you get when you’re dealing with amateurs, dumb and dumber. Two guys and a little girl in a canoe came and offered help, but Mitch declined, saying he could make it to the launch. Another couple came up and offered assistance and again Mitch declined, I don’t know what he was thinking, that maybe AAA was going to show, or maybe he was suffering hypothermia. Probably not, his teeth weren’t chattering.

Finally, a man paddled over on a paddleboard that knew what he was doing and grabbed Mitch’s kayak and pulled it up on his paddleboard to steady it, then righted it and held it still for Mitch to climb back into the seat. Just like the Lone Ranger, after saving the town he paddled off to save the next unlucky soul. I think all in all, Mitch was a bit embarrassed that he rolled it and I didn’t. I contained myself and followed him in to the launch, but the whole time I kept saying over and over, “It wasn’t me, I didn’t roll it, it wasn’t me. Woo Hoo!”

We had a great time and have decided to get our own kayaks, but I think some lessons might be prudent. How could you ask for a better vacation, wine, hiking, kayaking and watching someone else crash and burn and for once it wasn’t you?

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Today The Pacific Ocean

Today we drove out to the coast to let Orso play in the ocean. There were a few surfers out there trying to catch a few waves. Overall the day was beautiful, a mild breeze, partly cloudy and mild temperatures. I found some intact sand dollars and made Mitch put them in his pockets to carry for me.

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We took Orso to an inlet first to see how he would do in the ocean with the salt water.

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Then we moved to the ocean shore to explore.

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Our Vacation

We took a much needed vacation last week. I have cheated Mitch out of a proper vacation on the last three out of four vacations we had scheduled. All three vacations I had scheduled surgeries. One bunionectomy so I would look good in shoes, a bilateral mastectomy because I got stupid breast cancer and the reconstruction of the mastectomy so I would look somewhat normal in clothes again. So I decided that regardless of anything else, I was going to take Mitch on vacation, anywhere he wanted to go. He and I deserved that.

We had decided that we would drive to Washington State and go wine tasting in the Yakima Valley. Well fate has a sense of humor. The week before we were to leave, Murphy decided to come and stay as a houseguest for a few days. That Monday afternoon Mitch called me at work to inform me that the microwave went out. The really nice three year old microwave died. Yippee! Thursday Mitch called me again at work to relate the story on how the outside faucet disintegrated when he started hooking up the really cool soaker hose system he made. I am going to have to stop answering my phone at work. Sunday was the final blow. I took Mitch to work as usual, came back did my usual Sunday morning stuff and waited for Mitch to call for his ride home. I loaded up the dogs in the station wagon, climbed in and put the key in the ignition and turned the key. Nothing, nada, zilch. The car was dead as a door nail. This meant that I had to unload the dogs, take them back in the house, fix them kongs stuffed with carrots to keep them occupied and jump in the firebird to go get Mitch. Mitch diagnosed the car and determined that we needed a new starter. Someone was trying to tell me something.

Mitch installed the new microwave, a much cheaper not as nice microwave without a hitch. Something went right for once. The new faucet took three trips to the hardware store and one afternoon to install. The starter for the car took two trips to the auto parts store (one to buy the starter and one to take it back) and an online order to get the right starter for our old station wagon. It seems our vintage car also has special vintage general motors parts. After I added up the costs of the new “fun” stuff, I decided that we should stay a little closer to home for our vacation.

Second choice was a trip to Texas. We drove to San Antonio for the River Walk and the Alamo. We both have been there, but it was decades ago and decided that it would be a nice place to go in the spring. The River Walk was beautiful and peaceful even with all of the people there. Down along the River Walk, there were cool breezes and shade, making the stroll very pleasant. Dinner was at a very nice restaurant. Very nice, meaning the steaks started at thirty five dollars and the wine list started at sixty dollars a bottle. I kept a straight face while the steward pointed out the better selections at three hundred and fifty dollars and up. I was pretty proud of Mitch and myself for not dropping our jaws and saying something totally inappropriate. We settled on a nice half bottle of wine saying that we couldn’t drink a whole bottle. The steaks were done to perfection and the wine was very good. A wonderful dinner and one we won’t be repeating anytime soon.

After spending two days at San Antonio playing total tourists, we headed up to Fredericksburg, Texas, the heart of the Texas hill country wine area. You know me I am not going to pass up wine tasting if at all possible. We found out Texas is number five after California, New York, Oregon and Washington in wine production and sales. Plus because of the size of Texas there are so many microclimates and soil types that the same grape planted in one area will taste totally different in a different region.

It’s a good thing that Mitch was the designated driver and adult because I was like a kid in a candy store. I wanted to stop at every one of the wineries I saw. Mitch being the adult and not totally feeding my wine habit stopped at a few. I tasted many wines and even brought a few bottles home.

I got to find my vice, wine tasting, so next up was feeding Mitch’s vice, history. There is a National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg and Mitch wanted to go so we did. I should have paid more attention when the nice lady explained that the tickets were good for two days and that we could come and go in the museum multiple times. The tickets also included the Admiral Nimitz Museum, Pacific Combat Zone, Japanese Garden of Peace Memorial Courtyard and Plaza of the Presidents. The first museum, George H.W. Bush Gallery was huge. I had no idea how much time, effort and money had gone into the museum. There was so much detail and photos throughout; there were even planes and a jeep in the museum. It was Mitch’s turn to be the kid in the candy store. I wandered around and looked at the photos, read some of the stories, but he was totally enthralled absorbing everything he could.

Three hours into the museum and only about two thirds of the way through, I was getting a bit antsy. I wanted to be outside in the fresh air, taking pictures and people watching, but I controlled myself and acted like an adult. I kept reminding myself this was also Mitch’s vacation and I had my turn, now it was his turn. Sometimes it sucks to be grownup. It took us four and a half hours to get through the first museum. I felt like I was back in school. I couldn’t wait to get outside. Poor Mitch, by the end of the tour I almost dragged him out.

On our way back north we wanted to stop at this huge outlet mall in Gainesville that Mitch had gone to about twenty five years ago. The mall he remembered was huge with so many stores and the parking lot was filled with cars making it difficult finding a parking spot. So we stopped in Gainesville and checked into a hotel for the night, planning on doing some serious shopping in the morning. After breakfast I asked the front desk clerk if there was a map of the outlet mall so we could chart our shopping trip for expediency. She looked at me and said that almost all of the store fronts were empty that there were only about six shops still open. We couldn’t believe it so we walked over ourselves, just to see. It was like a ghost town, store after store front empty. This would be a great place to shoot a zombie apocalypse movie. What a disappointment. There was nothing left to do but hop in the car and head home.

After we got home, the really fun stuff started, unloading the car, getting the dogs out of hock, washing all of the clothes we wore and putting everything back on hangers that we didn’t wear, because I am a firm believer in over packing. Of course the yard has gone to seed and needs to be mowed and the weeds are planning a coup on tomato plants. I wonder why we came back.

What I did on My Vacation

We were on vacation this week and it didn’t come a moment too soon. I was in desperate need of some de-stressing. Our original vacation plans were to drive to Washington State and go on a serious week long wine tasting trek with some scenic vistas thrown in. But after going over the vacation budget and the cost estimates, we were a bit short and I am loathe to running up a huge credit card debt for a week of drinking and debauchery. Even though I am always up for debauchery and of course, drinking, I do have some limits.

After plan A tanked, we decided on plan B, a driving trip to New Mexico, going the NRA shooting center in Roton, New Mexico then driving on to Taos and tasting some of New Mexico’s wines. New Mexico is half the distance to Washington so I figured half the cost. Logical right? So that is what we decided on, drive to New Mexico, shoot up a bunch of ammunition, drive some wine and eat spicy food, what could be better?

Well fate decided that she had a better plan and evidently a sense of humor too. Not something I saw any humor in but I guess someone else might. There is a homeowner in this tiny burg that had let her property fall into extreme disrepair and the neighbors had been complaining. Original plans were made to condemn the property and tear it down. At the eleven hour the property owner showed up to a city meeting last fall to plead her case and of course our soft hearted codes enforcement officer, Mitch, fell for it. The city ended up giving her time to clean up the property and guess what, nothing was done. After many months of fruitless efforts to contact the owner, Mitch was finally able to serve her with a summons to come to court and guess what, the court date was smack dab in the middle of our vacation. There went plan B, straight down the tubes.

That left us with a very short window for any time away. We ended up with plan C, a quick sashay to other end of the state for a couple of days with Mitch and my camera. The two hooligans went to a pet spa to corrupt many new dogs and we got to sleep in hotel beds by ourselves, something very novel. We found out that we could sleep in a much smaller bed when it was just the two of us. We tasted a few Missouri wines though, I am not a fan of the wines here but I did buy an awesome t-shirt.

We found a few places to hike and got lost a couple of times hiking. You would think that being at a nature sanctuary with marked trails one would not get lost, but then one has never hiked with us. The nice lady at the Wildcat Nature Sanctuary even gave us a trail map and told us the direction to take and we still made the wrong turn, took the course backwards and ended up on the wrong side of the highway in the middle of a dry creek bed totally lost. Thank god we are smarter than most or you would be reading about a couple of idiots lost in the woods in southern Missouri.

All in all though the time away was short, we had fun just being away and hopefully my mental health has improved. By the way, here is the t-shirt I bought. It fits me don’t you think?

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I Am Such a Sissy

We just got back from a long weekend trip to Castle Rock, Colorado to see my best friend in the whole world.  Castle Rock is located on the eastern side of the Rocky Mountains about 2 hours or so from the foothills.  It has been decades since either Mitch or I have been to Colorado.  So we went sightseeing to some of the areas attractions.  On a whim the four of us decided to drive up to the top of Pike’s Peak.  My parents had taken me up when I was a child but I had forgotten anything about it other than going.

Pike’s Peak has an elevation of 14,110 feet above sea level, 31st highest peak out of 54 so it’s no slouch.  For some reason though, I didn’t think that 14,110 feet was so high, I don’t know, maybe I was suffering altitude sickness or just that impoverished model of reality that I live in.  Because for someone that is not a fan of heights I thought that driving up a winding narrow two lane road in thin air sounded like a great idea.  The ride started off nicely with great vistas of the mountains in the background and dramatic cliffs climbing all the way up to heaven. 

We hadn’t even gotten half way up when one side of the road was a huge drop off with no shoulder.  The side of the road just ended and there was nothing but space.   I was terrified to look out the window and over the drop off for fear that the mere force of my body weight angled toward the car window would cause us to veer off the side and plummet down to our deaths.  Consequently I found myself leaning over toward my friend trying to will the car’s weight and balance toward the middle of the road.  Yes I know a truly rational thought. 

When we finally reached the top of Pike’s Peak and got out of the car the second thing that totally surprised me was how cold it was.  Yes I know, we just drove vertically 14,110 feet and the air should be colder, but at the base the air temperature was 68 degrees why was it now 28 degrees and I was not dressed for 28 degrees.  Plus I was shocked at how little air there was to breathe and I was sucking in as much I could get, but there wasn’t much to go around.

Once I finally decided to quit being such a baby I marveled at the height we were at.  We were two thousand feet above the tree line with only tundra and rocks scattered around.  The view was magnificent, which as a matter of fact, was what inspired the song, America the Beautiful.  After warming up in the visitors’ center, we loaded up and headed off back down the mountain.  Lucky me we are going to be hurtling out of control down the mountain at break neck speeds around fifteen miles an hour or so.  Woo hoo.

The Weremoth

I had no idea that danger was lurking waiting for me this morning as I went through my morning routine.  I took the dogs for their early morning walk, where we dodge deer, raccoons and loose gravel (you have no idea how dangerous the lone piece of gravel is until you step on it in the dark).  Thankfully, the morning walk was without incident, for a change. 

Coming back home, the dogs got their carrots and I jumped into the shower.  After my shower, I started putting on my makeup, totally unaware of the danger just waiting for me.  I pulled out my makeup drawer reached in and grabbed my moisturizer smeared it on my face, and then went after the eye cream when I felt the ever so slight flutter against my hand.  I jerked my hand back just in time to see the rare extremely dangerous weremoth make its escape to the back of the drawer and into the dark recesses of the cabinet.   I just narrowly escaped with my life.  Not sure what a weremoth is, well they are big, huge, black, white or maybe purple, it doesn’t matter.  They strike just when your guard is down and you’re totally relaxed, like putting on your makeup.  I knew without a doubt that it would fly out of the drawer and latch onto my neck and suck out all my blood. 

Having only just started putting on my makeup I had no choice but to finish as quickly as possible keeping one eye on the mirror and what I was doing and one eye on the drawer hoping the weremoth wouldn’t sneak out and stage a blitz attack on me.  Where was Charlie when I needed him?  He always loves to eat moths.

I just hope I remember that it’s in there waiting and lurking for the perfect moment to fly out and kill us all in the middle of the night.  Maybe Mitch will find it first…

And It Just Doesn’t End

Two coats of gray primer and three coats of red paint just to paint a door and I’m not sure that three coats of paint will be enough to give that finished look.  Seriously?  If I had known that red was such a difficult color to work with, I would have gone with blue or green or anything else, maybe purple.  A simple one day project has taken all week and I’m not sure it’s really done yet.  I’m waiting for the third coat of paint to dry.

After the second coat of paint had dried I peeled off the tape protecting the glass panes and the door knob.  That went badly as well.  I should have used Frog tape, but no I used the regular blue that has worked in the past.  The blue tape hung on to the red paint with great tenacity.  I peeled off huge chunks of red paint on the metal strips between the window panes.  This meant that I had to make another trip to Lowes to buy tiny paint brushes to touch up the flubs.  I have started to doubt my sanity at attempting this project. 

I have only painted one side of the three doors mind you.  I still have the back side of the doors to paint.  Today is Sunday one week ago on last Sunday I started this insanity.  Guess what, vacation is officially over, tomorrow I get to go back to work, who hoo. 

At least Mitch has had a productive project laden vacation.  He gutted the bathroom, ripped out the tile floor, floor below and the subfloor in four days and in the last two he has re-installed the subfloor and floor.  He’s now ready to go buy the backer board for the tile and tile the floor, which he’ll get done this week.  Me, I’ll probably have to apply another coat of paint. 

A wadded up newspaper and a match is looking awfully good right now.

Another DIY Project Gone Horribly Wrong

Another stay at home working vacation for us.  This one is to redo a recent remodel, which sucks.  We gutted the second bathroom off the kitchen four years ago.  We removed the old ugly gold enamel cast iron tub and institutional sink and replaced them with a corner shower stall and cute pedestal sink.  It looked great, but the shower started to leak so we have to rip it out and fix the leak.  This has entailed ripping out the shower and the tile floor to see how much of the floor underneath the tile was ruined.  Most of the floor was water soaked so Mitch has had to tear out the floor and a large section of subfloor, leaving a huge hole in the floor looking down into the basement.  What fun redoing a remodel.

While he is immersed in the redo I thought that this would be the perfect time to do some of my pet projects that need to be done and haven’t had the time to accomplish.  One of the projects is a quick and easy one day spiff up.  I wanted to paint the three metal entry doors a new color to brighten up the look of the house.  Simple easy project, pick out a color, buy the paint and paint the door, right?  Leave it to me to turn a simple three step process into a four day ordeal. 

After weeks of looking at paint chips, I finally decided on a red hue.  I bought the paint in a quart size can, playing it safe just in case the color didn’t look as good on as it did on the chip.  Sunday afternoon after I got home from Lowes with paint in hand, I covered the floor with newspapers, for the drips. There are always drips when I paint.  I taped off the door knobs and the little strips between the window panes in the kitchen door.  I will never have windows with the little panes of glass because taping off the little panes was a pain in the neck.  I was finally ready to paint.  I started with the kitchen door and all of its’ little window panes.   I stirred the paint again for good measure and dipped the brush in the can and spread the first coat on.  It was horrible.  The painted surface looked like I had used my hand and was finger painting.  Large streaks of the unpainted door below showed through.  I couldn’t believe it; I had never had that happen before.  I thought maybe because the kitchen door hadn’t been painted before it would look better after it dried and I applied a second coat.

I decided to paint the second door and see how it looked.  The other two doors have had three different colors on them so I was sure that they would look much better.  I was wrong.  Both the second and third doors looked as bad as the first one.  The only thing I could do was to wait for them to dry and hope a second coat would fix everything. 

Monday (day two) morning came and the paint was still tacky.  I couldn’t believe it, this has never happened before.  I grabbed the half full can of paint and headed off to Lowes for some help and guidance.  I explained the problem, what the doors look like and what could I do to fix it.  Those two women couldn’t have been more helpful.  They asked lots of questions and explained that red paint had lots of pigment in it and could account for some of the problem and the brand of paint I had picked out was not very good for coverage.  I wished that had been explained to me the day before when I bought it.  It was decided that I needed to prime the doors with gray primer because gray primer works best with red paint and switch brands to Valspar, which I’ve always had good luck with anyway.  The paint department manager didn’t think I would have to apply paint stripper and start all over.  After much discussion we decided that I could probably get by with just painting the primer over the top of the tacky painted surface.  They refunded the full price of the half used can of paint and of course the only size can in stock was a gallon, my usual luck, but they only charged me the price of a quart.  I went home and went about applying a coat of primer, hoping that this was just a little set back.  No, not my luck.

I applied the gray primer and it looked as bad as or worse than the red paint below.  The brush grabbed the paint and left blobs and smears all over the door.  A wadded up piece of paper and a match in the corner is starting to look really good right now.  And just because I’m a glutton for punishment, I decided to paint one of the other doors to see if it would turn out any better.  It didn’t.  This time I stopped at two.  I’m not a total masochist.  I decided this would be a good time to mow the yard.  That I can do without it turning into a major ordeal. 

Two hours later the paint was dry so I thought why not put another coat of paint on to see if there was any improvement.  What did I have to lose, what’s one more coat for the paint stripper to have to take off if it didn’t work?   Surprise there is a god.  The second coat covered the first very nicely.  It looked like what primer should have looked like.  Maybe there is hope. 

Tuesday (day three) I wake up ready to paint a second coat of primer on the remaining door so I can apply the real color.  Tuesday morning, it’s also only forty five degrees outside, too cold to paint a metal door.  I have to wait for the sun to warm up the metal before I can apply any paint.  Waiting sucks.

Look Ma No Destruction

Sometimes my dogs really surprise me.  This past weekend was a complete blur.  It was nonstop go here, go there and get this done in a two day period.  This meant the dogs had to stay home by themselves and left to their own devices.  This has not translated well for us in the past.  We’ve come home to mass destruction and chaos throughout the house.  It has always amazed me how much mayhem they can wreak in a short period of time, so you can imagine my trepidation at abandoning them for the major part of a two day period.

Saturday morning started off with the first stop of the day going to the grocery store.  We took the dogs and left them barking in the back of the car, which caused the usual head turning and stares of the other patrons.  After the unloading the groceries and putting everything out of harm’s way, the marathon of go here go there began.  First stop was to go watch my granddaughter play soccer.  You can imagine the group chaos with a bunch of three and four year olds running around chasing a ball.  I wish I had brought my camera.  After the “Toddler Pre-Olympic” soccer match, we headed off to Menards in search of a corner shower stall.  The one Mitch replaced four years ago is leaking, so now he has to take that one out and replace it with a new one.  Re-do of a remodel, oh joy. 

We had great success and found what we needed and it was on sale.  Bonus!  We loaded it up and headed home with enough time for me to mow the yard and run the weed eater.  Sunday we spent the whole day helping a friend pack and move all of her belongings to a new home.  It was a rushed move, so a lot of packing was also involved.  By the time we finished up with the chaotic move I still had to buy dog food, because there wasn’t enough for dinner Sunday evening.  I don’t think I would have survived the night without dog food for them. 

Walking in the house with one eye closed in hopes that at least a couple of walls survived the weekend, I was totally amazed to find all three of them patiently waiting at the door for me.  Barking and raising a huge fuss but I would expect nothing less from them.  They had been perfect angels, nothing out of place.  Maybe there is hope.

My Birthday

Today is my birthday.  I’m not announcing this to get birthday wishes, even though birthday wishes are always on my top ten list of good things.  I’m just always a bit amazed at the people I know, my sons included, who pooh pooh birthdays as they get older.  Do they think that by denying a birthday is denying age.  Not me, I love birthdays, the more the better.  I would celebrate my birthday twice a year if I could.  Birthdays are not about getting older, but getting better.  Getting another chance to do something special.  A chance to make a difference in your life and other lives that you touch.  Birthdays are not just the day to celebrate the day you were born (even though it’s a great excuse for cake)  but a chance to begin a re-birth of sorts. 

Birthdays are like New Year’s Resolutions, they are great way to make changes in ourselves.  Opportunities to grow, to be more, to never stop learning and loving life.  I recently found a ring that says it all.  “Love Life” is inscribed on the outside and on the inside the words “Be Brave”.  I wear it on my left thumb and every time I look at it, I smile.  It reminds me that if the day is not going to way I want, I still love life and every minute in it counts.  I would also add “Be Bold”.   I want to go through each day strong facing every challenge and opportunity with my chin stuck out.

There are so many things I want to do, places to go and people to meet.  There are not enough birthdays out there for me to accomplish all that I want with the years that I have left.  There is no way I going pass up a birthday just because a number changes and gets higher. 

I am not going pass up a birthday for vanity’s sake.  The important milestones in age are old enough to start going to school, getting your driver’s license, getting to vote and old enough to know better.  I don’t think some people ever learn the last part.  I’m sure some would add old enough to drink, but after getting old enough to know better, drinking is for taste and not drinking to get drunk. Besides the longer I’m around the longer I get to really annoy certain people. 

So Happy Birthday to me, it’s going to be great.