Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My New Diet and Exercise Plan is Working!

And on a serious note,
does that back strap make my butt look big?

Instead of a Puppy

Mink pants.
Looks like you don't even have to wear a Spanx under 'em.

And Today?

This week is just getting better and better...I say the heck with all responsibility!  And job?  I don't need a stinkin' job.  Just read my horoscope.  

Today's Aquarius Horoscope:
Mar 31, 2009

Be yourself today - 100% you, dear Aquarius. The world needs more individuality. Revel in your unique qualities and be generous with sharing them with the world. Feel free to adopt a new and unconventional way of doing things - anything. Beware, however, that there may be a strong, grounding force that is trying to tie you down to tradition. Don't feel pressured to give in to the social norm.

Check out your horoscope, and then lets go play.  I think the people who write this must be Aquarians.  I also think this is gonna be a fun day.  I'll keep you posted.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Inspired and Explosive? Yup

This is really turning into a fun day...

Your Name's Power is Hope

Your name's power is that it helps you be hopeful.

Your name conveys both hardiness and charisma.

People who meet you can't help but think you are personable.

You try to live an inspired, sometimes explosive life.

Monday Goals?

My Horoscope tells me to do whatever I want to do today. 
 I consider that a good thing.
 My Angel Card says "Beauty."  
Also a good thing.
So, what do I do with this beautiful day?
Suggestions please.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday Serenity

I like a nice, cozy day of rain.
I like how it washes all the sand and salt of Winter away.
But there is one side effect of heavy Spring rains I cannot bear.
And if I write about it, it will make me physically sick.
So you have to guess.
UPDATE:  you are right, worm people.  And I am sorry if I have been quiet, but I really am sick from them.  Can't. Eat. Just. Gag.

Saturday, March 28, 2009


What kind of puppy is this?
And where can I get one?

Friday, March 27, 2009

Forward thinking

Because my nest will be empty in a few months,
I have become accustomed to thinking about the future.
I am already thinking about my Mother's Day Wish List.  
I need some advice....
Should I ask for potting soil or liposuction?
What's on your wish list?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

This-n-That Thursday

Hot off my two brain cells...
  • I think I spend an hour a week unsubscribing from email spam.  Where's the filter Kenneth?
  • Do you remember who infamously said, "What's the frequency, Kenneth?"
  • Speaking of unsubscribing, I cannot tolerate another newsletter update from Gwyneth Paltrow's blog GOOP.  It is, in one word, vapid. What was I thinking?
  • Speaking of vapid, I am missing Shauna Sand this week.  Wonder if she has bunions or something.
  • I am having a private contest with myself: How many pounds of groceries can I buy for $100 or less?  We are eating a lot of fluffy food.  You?
  • I have developed an unhealthy attraction to Keith Urban.  I consider this a problem.
  • How high do reading glasses go?  I'm starting to be a concerned 2.50.
  • You must go to Trader Joe's and get their White Bean and Basil Hummus.  Now.  
  • I continue to read the UVa Admissions blog even though The Bird has already been accepted.  I can see this problem getting even worse.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

VIA Starbucks

If you've spent more than 30 seconds reading any of my previous posts, then you know I am a nuisance happy volunteer to try something new.  So, when Asthma Girl asked for volunteers to try the new instant coffee from Starbucks, guess who got in on it?  Yup.

First of all, if any of you have ever received anything from her, that handwriting is like a fairy tale.  Seriously, AG, you should start a calligraphy business.  Even Squazz commented on the beauty of the envelope.  And I need you to know: that is rare.  But, I am off track, and that is not rare.

Anyway, the VIA:  it is surprisingly Stabucksesque.  And, yes, that is a word.  It is not like any other instant coffee I have ever had, and I must confess to being a Keurig K-cup girl.  The beauty of the VIA (which is Italian for "road") is that you can take it on the road.  If you are on the go, or in a hurry, I would recommend this easy way to get your joe.  It has the distinctive Starbucks well-roasted flavor, and it is wonderfully packaged in its own easy to carry slim pack.

Even though I am not a Starbucks coffee devotee, I do like their latte;), I would truly recommend this for ease of portability and convenience.  Mama's Grade: B+

Asthma Girl's Penmanship: A+

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Dog Tired

I bet I'm not the only one who feels like this.
Am I?

Monday, March 23, 2009


It all started with a drinking dinner out with my best girls.
Annie, Jules and I were having a simply lovely evening.
All was well in the land of chardonnay and laughter.
And then it happened.
A twitch.  An itch. 
Estrogen levels began to plummet.
Frothing and writhing ensued.
Me, not them.
Before I knew it, my neck was being lacerated.
There was a tag in my shirt.
How'd that get there?
ZOMG the agony of it all.
The clawing was fierce.
I think I caught a glimpse of their horrified faces...
In between the weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Mine.  Not theirs.
Annie and Jules were apoplectic....
(And that, my friends, could be a first.)
All they could do was sip and stare.
But I digress.
They were afraid and cried out:
"Mental P!  Your shirt! It's tearing!"
And I was all, "shirt?"
"I don't need no stinkin' shirt." 
And with that, the offending article was extricated with a flourish.
And all was right in the world.
Then, if memory serves, we ordered another round.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Wildcat in the House

Baby Augie is rocking the nest.
According to 'Nova, he's passed the test.
And Mama wants to hold his wings
just a little bit more....
Even though she's proud
of this baby boy we all adore.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Springtime Sunday Serenity

If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant;
if we did not sometimes taste of adversity,
prosperity would not be so welcome.
--Anne Bradstreet
If you worked on the flowers at my church with me,
you would already know the following chart.
--Mental P Mama
Have a Super Sunday.

Vicarious Exercising...

...I Haz it

The Form
The Style
The Reward
That's it.
Dora says we can sit around the rest of the day.
Happy Saturday.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Got Green?

I do.
Thank goodness.
And a backup as well.
You never know how many you'll need...
On a long, cold weekend.
Besides, a dirty martini is a fine way to toast Spring.
Especially when it is 39 cold and windy degrees.

I think I'm going to enter one of these in Kacey's March Photo Contest.
The theme is green.  Go check it out.
Oh, and have a wonderful Friday.

This-n-That Thursday

Just because...
  • I am trying to stay away from FaceBook a bit more.
  • So look for more tweets from me...
  • Since my hair got blonder this week, I want to have a little touch of sun now.
  • What is a good self tanner that doesn't stink?
  • I do not understand this "Flair" business.  At all.
  • Why do I keep getting spam from the flat belly/acai berry people?
  • And the Hoveround?  Seriously.  Gah.
  • I think I could eat nothing but vidalia onions 24/7.  Of course, I would have to get used to living alone.
  • Is there anything more happy than the first robin sighting of the year?
  • I'm wondering if I promise to potty train it--to the actual potty--if Squazz will let me have a new puppy.
  • Why did I sign up for that half marathon?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


God Bless us Everyone.
And this beautiful mama....
My heart aches for her family.
She is all of us-- little bump on the head--
And poof--it's over.  May God Bless them all.
And all of us.

God Bless Us Everyone.

A Big College Wahoo

The Baby Bird got into her first choice.
I am a proud Mama.
And a sighing Mama.
Next week, we expect Augie to be flexing his wings.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My Mama

Mental P and her Mama: Summer 1960
Today would have been my mother's 79th birthday.
She was a smart, beautiful and fun Southern Lady.
We had our moments, and we had our laughs.
And I miss her terribly.

Posh, Where'd You Go?

Check out that neck!
How old is this girl?
Seriously in need of a burger.
And a beer.
And what are those on her feet?

Okay, enough of Victoria Beckham.
And that reminds me...
I need to go do my cardio.


Today's Aquarius Horoscope:
Mar 16, 2009

Today should be a gratifying day, dear Aquarius, full of great news, pleasant surprises and opening up doors of opportunity on just about every level. Career breaks and opportunities to earn more money could come your way; new friends could be introduced to you, and opportunities for education and travel also may be presented. Whatever actually manifests out of all this, however, is up to you. You might find decisions difficult.

I am taking this to the bank!  And I hope whatever decisions I have to make can be answered by my Ouija Board.  Get your Horoscope here.  I hope yours is as good as this!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Baby Bird

Has her eyes on the future.
Is getting painfully close to fledging.
And Mama is cheering her on.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Not Lucite

Shauna's got some new shoes.
Happy Friday y'all.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Bloggy Love: The Coasts and The Others

As we wind down our first week of ignoring the news Bloggy Love, I would like to take some time to recognize our buddies on each side of the country.  I have to tell you all how much I love visiting you, and how much I have learned and laughed this past year.  I hope we continue to do this long after I can simply dictate to my computer.

Now: On with the love.

The West Coast Babes:  This is a fun and creative lot.  Must be all that clean living.  One of my first favorites (besides AsthmaGirl) was Mrs. G.  She has finally launched The Women's Colony, and I think you should pay her a visit if you already haven't.  Then there's our friend at the Little Egg Farm--never a dull moment there.  Ever.  A newcomer is imom, who is coming to the Virginia Blogfest!  Foolery is coming, too, and MommyPie probably would, but she is busy with her new site Swap Mama's where you need to go right now and sign up to trade all your gently used children's things.  Oops:  I almost forgot jojo--go  check out her random insanities;)

Our chefs on the left coast are Noble Pig who can also pour you a nice glass of wine, and Evil Chef Mom who manages to cook awesome meals for her brood and for us!

Grandma J lives in Texas now, but I cannot think of her as anything but a California girl, so she stays here for now.  Until she comes to Virginia in July! And you must not overlook Suz--a superb photographer and writer who will take you on a glorious tour of SoCal every single day.  Just overlook her hockey fixation.

Our Canadian Friends:  The Baroness is coming to the Virginia Blogfest with AsthmaGirl, and I cannot wait to meet her.  She is quite regal and reserved.  Unless you get her talking about Elvis.  The Smitten Image is another wonderful place to view spectacular photography.  And Benny the Jack Russell is the star of the show.  Bear Naked has been on hiatus due to some serious illness in the den, but I hope she'll be back soon.  Stop by and send them some good wishes.

Across the Pond: First, we have Jeri whose husband is deployed right now.  She manages to keep her wits about her, and I am not sure how she does it.  She really has her hands full.  And Holly.  She is on a break.  I hope it's just a break.  Please stop by and tell her to hurry back.

The East Coasters:  We are a spirited group.  I can say this because I know most of us!  The three EST bloggers I have yet to meet are Dyln (hello? Riley and cocktails on the porch?), Maggie (she of the witty blog and beautiful daughter) and Mary (in her exquisite Red House).  Beware ladies, I plan on meeting you all before too long.

If you have spent more than two minutes here, you know my friends Annie and Jules.  We do our best to stay out of trouble, but we are not always successful.  But we do have fun.  Too much fun.  And blogging has brought me face to face with these wonderful peeps:  Daryl (a fantastic NYCer who is an amazing photographer--we are traveling to Blogfest together!), Ellen (a fun new friend who has a whiskey cake in her kitchen right this very minute), One Stitch Two Stitch, who I knew because our daughters are in school together, but she has a newish blog, and she is a hoot!  And there's Debbie--my North Carolina friend, another GRITS, who was very brave and came out to meet me when I was with my children in North Carolina last Summer.  I know she didn't want to--but she lived to tell the story;)

I want to thank you all again for bringing light, wit and humor into my life.  Every. Single. Day.  Keep up the good work.  xoxo, Lauren

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bloggy Love: GRITS, GLITS and GLIMS

I am still ignoring the news and spreading the bloggy love.  Today, we are going to celebrate lots of my bloggy buddies.  To make things easier, I have divided them into three groups.  Try to follow along.

GRITS -- If you are one of these, you already know who you are.  GRITS are very near and dear to my heart because I am one.  I just happen to live in Connecticut right now--that may all change when I go to college with The Bird.  Girls Raised In The South are a special lot.  Funny, charming, witty, pretty and outstanding cooks, GRITS are good bloggy friends as well.  We have our Virginia girls-- Chesapeake Bay Woman, Big Hair Envy, Marlene, and Noe Noe Girl--and I cannot wait to finally meet them at the Blogfest in July.

Flea lives in Oklahoma--she is a true GRITS, and she is incredibly talented.  She made me a neck wrap for our Pay it Forward days, it is filled with aromatics and you can zap it in the microwave for a spa experience...
and she made me my very own smocked blouse.  It is one of the prettiest things I've ever seen.

Other fun Okies are Lisa (a retired DARE cop and an incredibly talented photographer) and Tammy (a tireless ball of energy and a kook;). Check them out, and then hop over to Arkansas and pay Treasia a visit. Her Frugal Fridays are inspirational.

Another wonderful GRITS is Keetha.  She is in Mississippi (where I was born, early on a frosty morn, look away, look away, look away Dixieland).  As a matter of fact, we share the same birthday-- just a different year.  A decade to be exact.  I don't hold her youth against her, however, and neither should you.  Keetha sent me a postcard of one of my favorite college posters:
And for my birthday, I got a copy of her book!  A fantastic memoir and cookbook.  I love this so much I don't have time to be envious that this child is already published!
GLITS--These are the Girls Living In The South.  I don't know if they are actual GRITS, so I created this category for them.  If I made a mistake, I'm sorry. Please set me straight.  Anyway, in Georgia, we have lots of GLITS. Debra (another great photographer), Deb (a transplant whose husband thinks I'm an ax murderer), and Peach (who doesn't know Peach?).

In Texas, you'll find Snooty Primadonna (she was Lucille Ball's housekeeper in a former life!)  And now she is attempting to become a scratch golfer. And Trisha--a real trooper.

Arizona--I am calling this the South, so bear with me.  It's hot there. We have my good friend Sassy who sent me this clipboard that she decorated just for me!
And Pouty, who won the sheep from a contest at Kate's that I so desperately wanted?  She sent it to me.  How nice is that???
GLIMS -- Girls Living In Middle States -- another creative group.  Kacey (amazing photographer and recent empty-nester), Caution (busy and wise mother/teacher/diplomat), Maria (she of the turtles in the garden--I cannot wait for them to wake up), Starwood Gal (wonderful cook who just went to PW's new Ranch House!), and Kim (in the process of starting a whole new career--with some side trips and observations on life).

These ought to keep you busy for a while.  I'll be back with the two coasts and our offshore friends later.  Remember:  Stay away from the news and the stock market.  You do, however, have my permission to finish your taxes.  You're welcome.

You Must Watch This...

We Interrupt Bloggy Love for a bit to bring you this bit of information:

FDA Approves Depressant Drug For The Annoyingly Cheerful

You gotta love The Onion!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Bloggy Love: Part 2

Last year, about two months into my blogging addiction foray, I had the following conversation one morning with my dear husband (Squazz):

Mental P:  Squazz!  My friend in Seattle is going for a hike today with her three chihuahuas!  And she has asthma....!!!

Squazz (Yawning):  Squazz? (Yes, he calls me Squazz, too) Is this a real friend or a friend from that blog of yours? (Using the dreaded air quotes)

Mental P:  *&$#@*%$  What are you talking about?  She is a REAL friend and she happens to have a blog.

Squazz: ... (Yawning more)

Fast forward a few weeks:  Mental P wakes up a little late on a Saturday morning and eventually stumbles gets to her desk.  Because it had been such a busy night before on Cocktail Corner (hiccup), Mental has not had a chance to blather on compose her masterpiece for the blogosphere that day.  There is an email waiting--a fretful one.  It says:  "I hope you are okay.  You usually post by this time, and I am worried about you.  Love,  AsthmaGirl"

That was all I needed.  We became best friends that day in my book.  And so it goes.  I am very happy to be AsthmaGirl's friend.  At least I think we're friends.  (Aren't we D?) I love her dogs--The Brute Squad.   

 And I love her.  A tireless champion of the underdog, and a big soul with some cranky-butt lungs that cannot keep her down, no matter how much they try!  She is going to the Virginia Blogfest in July--so am I.  And I cannot wait.  Go visit AsthmaGirl.  You'll be glad you did.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Bloggy Love

Since I decided to stop paying so much attention to the media hysteria news last week, I have started noticing the nicer things in my life.  And there is a lot of good stuff out there.  Like my blog buddies.  When I started this madness known as blogging, I never imagined how many friends I would have out there by the end of my first year.  And I consider you all my friends.  I love our chats.  I love our laughs.  I love how you make me think.  And I love being Mental P.

One of my first blog friends was Kate.  She is a kind, generous, loving friend who lives with her husband and beautiful border collie George in an historic house in Maryland that George Washington reportedly visited.  Really.  I have even invited myself down for a visit.  I am hoping Daryl and Annie will go with me, but I keep forgetting to tell them about this plan.  Anyway, Kate takes amazing pictures and is on a new streak of adding wonderful textures to everything she gets her hands on...  I pimped out her texturized goldfinch shot a few weeks ago when she had a giveaway.
I didn't win, but that's okay.  You can see her amazing work on her photo site and her Etsy shop.  Kate sometimes takes pity on me and gives me a present anyway.  Like this one:
This is one of my favorites, and I have it framed and hanging here in my office with me.  If that doesn't make you smile, there is something wrong with you.  I am serious.  If you're not smiling, then just get straight to the doctor.

Last week, I sent her some pictures of my new red cowboy boots.  I took them on an outing to the beach.  I still haven't worn them, and I don't know when I'll get around to that, but in my defense, they are too much fun to play with.  They're like my own grown-up barbie doll.  Maybe I should go to the doctor.  
But on a serious note, look at those puppies.  You can't beat a good texture on your red cowboy boot shot.  Nope.  Go visit Kate.  You'll be glad you did, and you won't think about the crappy news at all.  I promise.  I am going to share the bloggy love all week.  Won't you join me?  It makes you feel good.  I promise.

Monday Monday...

Monday Monday, so good to me,
Monday Monday, it was all I hoped it would be
Oh Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening you would still be here with me.

Monday Monday, can't trust that day,
Monday Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way
Oh Monday morning, you gave me no warning of what was to be
Oh Monday Monday, how yould could leave and not take me.

Every other day, every other day,
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes
You can find me cryin' all of the time

Monday Monday, so good to me,
Monday Monday, it was all I hoped it would be
Oh Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening you would still be here with me.

Every other day, every other day,
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes
You can find me cryin' all of the time
-The Mamas and The Papas

And me?  I'm still here ignoring the news.  Have a great day my friends!   xoxo, Mama

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Twelve Days and Counting...

Vernal Equinox
March 20, 2009; 7:44 AM (EST):  
The Sun will cross directly over the Earth's equator.
Bring it.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Springing Forward

Nina Ricci's newest.
I'm sticking with my New Balance running shoes.
What are your shoes today?
And if any of you Southern braggarts tell me flip flops...
Well, just try to do it nicely.

Friday, March 6, 2009

We Can Do It

Yesterday, I finally had to push back from my media addiction.
I have always loved all things financial and political.
But now it is making me sick.
So, I turned off all my electronic boxes.
I cooked.
I read.
I slept well.
Today is a new day.
And I think we all need to declare war on our gloomy outlooks.
We've been through worse in this country.
It is going to be okay.
So go out and have a great day.
And an even better weekend.
Mama said so.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

This-n-That Thursday

Of all the things I've lost, it's my mind I miss the most:
  • Raquel Welch is doing commercials for Foster Grants glasses again.  Foster Grant reading glasses.  Gah.
  • I am never watching The Bachelor again.  I have seen three episodes in my entire life.  The last three.  I am totally Team Melissa.  And I cannot stand that phony Jason.
  • Why do bruises last longer the older you get?
  • I haven't worn my new red cowboy boots yet.  I just look at them and take pictures of them.  And wait til you see what Kate has done to the pictures!  Can you say texturitization?
  • I saw somewhere that Ron Howard's daughter just turned 28!  Opie Taylor has a 28 year old kid???  I am officially old.  
  • Speaking of Opie, I wish they would play other old shows on TVland.  Like Family Affair.  Didn't you just love Uncle Bill?  And Mr. French? And My Three Sons?  That was another good one.  Uncle Charlie was awesome.  
  • I also wish Shauna Sand would go walking about in those lucite shoes soon.  I miss her.  I might need help.
  • I need a life.
  • But wait.  What old shows do you want to see back on the tube?  Let's start a petition.  Some more from me:
Big Valley
The High Chaparral
The Courtship of Eddie's Father
Medical Center
Get Smart
Scooby Doo (the hour-long one)
Petticoat Junction
The Dick Van Dyke Show
Sonny and Cher Hour
Laugh In
That Girl
Bullwinkle and Rocky
Dark Shadows
Bewitched (pre-Tabitha)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Why Did the Pig Cross the Road?

Well, in Fairfield, Connecticut, apparently they do it to go to Victoria's Secret.

This shot was taken last week by my sister-in-law's sister.  Got that?  Anyway, she reports that the little piggy has quite the stubborn streak and had no interest in crossing the road or continuing their walk at all.  I wonder if PetSmart has pig obedience classes.  They should go.  I mean, how horrible must it be to be out for a stroll with your pig, and it doesn't obey a simple command?  Gah.  I am going to stake out that corner to see if I can observe this duo for myself.  I think there's a little bistro nearby.  Maybe I could talk my Cocktail Corner friends into the field trip.  They're usually game for an adventure and a sip.
And I also have a strong hankering for a BLT.

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

More humor for your pleasure.  Hey, at least I can keep your mind off AIG. For a minute:

"Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer. His whole thing is entertainment. Yes, it's incendiary. Yes, it's ugly."
-- RNC Chairman Michael Steele

"I have enormous respect for Rush Limbaugh. I was maybe a little bit inarticulate. There was no attempt on my part to diminish his voice or his leadership."
-- Michael Steele, two days later

"I realized words that I said weren't what I was thinking. It was one of those things where I thinking I was saying one thing, and it came out differently."
-- Michael Steele, in a further clarification

Happy Thoughts

Today, when I feel tempted to watch MSNBC or glance at the Dow, I am going to rest my eyes upon this treasure instead:
This baby albino dolphin lives with its mother in a small pod of other dolphins in a saltwater lake in Louisiana.  But instead of being white, it is a bright, cheery pink.  If that doesn't put a smile on your face, then I think you should just get back in bed and pull the covers over your head.  Get the whole story here.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Cabin Fever

During my snow-day Internet crawl, I have discovered many things.
The New England Patriots had their cheerleader tryouts yesterday.
#225 looks a little like Squazz's ex-wife.
Just keeping it real, folks.
Just keeping it real.

In Like a Lion

March never disappoints.
We have over a foot of the white stuff.
And 4 more inches on the way.
We are having a snow day and then some.
I want to play in my garden.
But today, I will supervise the shoveling.
I will supervise all things food.
Ribs, cornbread, wine, corn chowder, wine, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.
And just sit around and wish.
For this.
And when I get to the Virginia Blogfest in July?
I am going to smack Marlene for wishing for all this snow.
I swear.