Snowshoeing Photo Essay – Get Featured!

After my big adventure, I had to take Danny snowshoeing. Roxy raced ahead.

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Danny followed my lead down to the Sally Barber Road.

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Once we hit the mining trail, we cruised on the hard-packed snow.

snowshoeing the Sally Barber

We ran into a runner who suggested trekking to the mine or looping around by taking Nightmare on Bald Mountain Trail. We couldn’t find the trail, so we made our own tracks up old Baldy.

The slow and steady climb through heavy snow proved to be too much for Roxy.

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We found the trail back home and Roxy sprinted ahead.

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Our little outing took more than two hours, but the exercise while taking in Colorado’s beauty was worth every minute.

Come up with a caption for “backpacking Roxy” and get featured on the Wild Ride!

snowshoeing with RoxyLeave your caption in the comment section below. The winner will be featured on my sidebar until next month’s contest! My kids, Kelly and Courtney, will choose the finalists.  Good luck!

Happy first day of spring!

Daily Prompt: The Happy Wanderer

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Wearing It Proudly!

Last Saturday, Danny and I rode the chairlift with a friendly gentleman. We commented on the the fine weather and fresh snow and noticed his accent.  This started a guessing game. He removed his goggles and squinted into the bright sunshine as Danny and I tried to guess his nationality. After naming 8 or 9 countries, we gave up. He said, “I’m Ukrainian.”

We continued talking after we arrived at the top. Then he wanted to guess my heritage. He asked me to take off my goggles and look at him straight on and then in profile. “Irish,” he said, “Your nose gave it away! It’s the same one they drew on Leprechaun’s in books and cartoons back in the day.”

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My father always claimed he was full-blooded Irish. Then out of the blue a couple of years ago, he mentioned a Scottish great grandmother who came to live with them for a while. “What?” My mother asked with skepticism and just about fell over.

Knowing that I’m more than 75% Irish (maybe closer to 70% with this recent revelation), always put a spring in my Irish step this time of year. Another part of that spring comes from nostalgic memories.

I grew up in a creative household. My dad was one of the original Madmen and my mom was always whipping something up in the kitchen or on the sewing machine. They started a new and unique tradition. Every year, on St. Patrick’s Day Eve, the Leprechauns visited our house. They were a messy lot and would spill their chocolate filled coins all over the house while we slept. My sister and I searched high and low for the little fellas, but we never found them. Later, my brother joined in the shenanigans.

gold coins

My mother would bake an apple pie while corned beef, carrots and cabbage simmered all afternoon on the stove top. The scent was heavenly. As if that weren’t enough, she baked soda bread. After my dad returned from work, we would sit down to an authentic Irish feast while traditional music played from my dad’s record player.

I continued this tradition with my own family. For my son Kelly, this is one of his favorite holidays. Every year, he makes an Irish feast for his friends. I am still working on an invitation.

An Irish Leprechaun

So when I look in the mirror at my pug Irish nose, I smile. I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world, even for a glimpse of those elusive Leprechauns.

 Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

To watch Danny and I dance an Irish jig – Click HERE!

For the more about my family’s fun with Leprechaun’s – Click HERE!

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The First of Many Wild Rides

Impulse and risky choices have taken me on all kinds of adventures. This story epitomizes who I am.

After graduating from college, I struggled to find illustration jobs. Every month or two, I drew promotional advertisements for an upscale women’s clothing store where I worked selling clothes. The intermittent opportunities paid a meager wage. I made more money selling clothes than drawing them.

Esprit Girl

Then, I had a brilliant idea. Madison, Wisconsin is only a few hours away from Chicago, so I took the Van Galder Bus to the Merchandise Mart. I hoped to find a few businesses willing to pay me to draw their clothing and accessories.

With an art portfolio held tight in my hand, I knocked on doors all day, but only found one interested company. I showed the owner my drawings and paintings. She picked a purse from a pile on a table and said, “Draw this one.” She handed me a #2 pencil, a piece of typing paper and escorted me to her desk. She and her staff watched as I drew. Perspiration dripped from every pore on my body. Somehow, I managed to finish. She smiled and paid me $10.00. It covered less than half of my bus fare.

Purse Illustration

I took the elevator down to the lobby and stepped into the chilly spring air. After reorienting myself, I made my way to the bus stop. I thought about my career choice and if it would be worth it to travel to Chicago again.

While I stood shivering on the curb with my back against the Lake Michigan wind, someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned and a thirty-something, unshaven man in a light jacket and jeans asked, “Are you waiting for the bus back to Madison?” Continue reading

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Are You Ready “to” Spring?

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The bad news:

This Sunday, March 9th, marks the beginning of Daylight Saving Time or what I like to call, “You Ripped Off an Hour of My Precious Sleeping Time.” We lose an hour at 2:00 AM when time springs ahead to 3:00 AM. Dawn will break an hour later and the sun won’t slide behind our mountains until 7:02 PM. It will be one of those groggy days which will oddly resemble jet lag. It will creep into Monday morning with an increase in traffic accidents and heart attacks.

I love when it ends in November and I have a whole extra hour to play, but the start-up is killer. I can’t believe one little hour can mess with our heads so much.

I wonder if anyone has ever screwed with time in order to win a war. I can imagine the enemy sneaking into camp and setting all the clocks ahead by one hour. Just think of the mayhem, friendly fire, and subsequent heart attacks.

Did you know that Ben Franklin is responsible for our abrupt and jarring time change? In 1784, he spent some time in Paris and came up with an idea to save on the cost of candles. It’s always about money and sometimes about the cost of wax.

The good news:

Here in Boulder, day lengthens by 2 minutes and 37-38 seconds every 24 hours. For all of you still in the eye of the Polar Vortex, spring will arrive on Thursday, March 20th, whether Weather likes it or not. The 4th of July is less than four months away. How can that be? Time is precise and controlled. It ticks on and on, with concise rhythm and constant meter. Weather is obstinate and unpredictable. It throws tantrums without warning. It has its way, always. It doesn’t care about Time or the season. It’s an emotional monster, a willful child, and a hormonal teenager.

On Sunday morning, when you set your clocks ahead, you’ll be one hour closer to spring. The days will lengthen, temperatures will rise, and snow will melt.

But don’t mention anything to Weather. We don’t want it to become a hot mess.

Are you for or against Daylight Saving Time?

Photo courtesy of Free Wallpaper

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Woohoo! 1337! What?

1337 followers

I reached a milestone with the post, “I Had a Little Adventure While You Were Dancing!” Since I scheduled it for 7:00 AM, I never got the satisfaction of seeing, “You published your 300th post.” Being a “gold star” person, I have strived to earn them since I was a little kid. I wondered if WordPress had added a golden trophy to my virtual case, so I clicked “Awards” at the bottom of the list located on the left side of my notifications. Nope. I surpassed 3,000 WordPress blog followers, but didn’t receive a trophy for that accomplishment or for my 200oth.

But there is a trophy in my case with a number so peculiar, I scratched my head. I earned it when I acquired my 1337th follower. Why 1337? After FSOG, Five Seconds On Google, a list of results appeared.

At the top of the list was The Urban Dictionary with a definition for 1337:

  • “Hacker “Sp33k” for leet, or elite. Originating from 31337 “eleet”, the UDP port used by Dead Cow Cult, a hacker group, to access Windows 95 using Back Orifice, a notorious hacking program.”

The Dead Cow Cult? Was I now a member of a notorious group of hackers and didn’t know it? I have returned when the cows came home, but I don’t believe any were dead. Continue reading

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Roxy and Squirrel and the Contest

Our dog Roxy has a friend. Squirrel hangs out in our oak trees or on the roof and waits for her to come out into the yard. He chirps and chatters and makes a ruckus. He acts like this is HIS yard.  Roxy knows better. A showdown occurs every day. I wouldn’t mind except our petite 15 pound Bichon has an enormous set of lungs. When she starts barking, it echoes off the Rocky Mountains. It sets off car alarms. The coyotes start howling out in the open space. I can’t stand it! 

My yard

After a few years of this relationship, I’ve learned squirrel doesn’t like the smell of vinegar. I sprayed in his general direction a couple of times when I was trying to get Roxy’s attention. Now all I have to do is step outside and Squirrel bolts. He flies through the air from the roof or from the tops of our trees all the way to the ground. I’ve finally earned some respect.

I took these photos yesterday.

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Squirrel knows who owns this yard. ME!

Roxy I

“This bitch is ready to go!”

And now for a big announcement. Kippfu from A’A in Paradise won the caption contest!

You should check out my Hawaiian friend’s blog and be sure to click on his surfing video on the side bar. It is waaaay too cool! You’ll see a few sexy photos since he posted a picture of discretely (barely), covered boobs every day in October for breast cancer awareness. They are his top posts!

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My favorite Kippfu post is Yoga Fire. It is hilarious.

Thanks to everyone who played along and voted. I’ll hold another caption contest in March. Click here to see the results. It was close.

Roxy just ran through the house to her doggy door. It’s dark outside and the coyotes are howling. I shut it two hours ago. She’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see her furry friend.

Do you have any pests in your neighborhood?

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The Boob Report – Sex and Yes! Sex!

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Warning. This is an explicit post about sex, aging and surviving breast cancer for August McLaughlin’s Beauty of a Woman Blogfest, Girl Boner Edition. Do NOT read it out loud to your child while he or she sits on your lap.

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Image from Wikimedia

Twenty years ago, I ran into Cybill Shepherd in the entrance of a New York restaurant. I never had the opportunity to say more than hello, but I’m sure we’d be besties. She impressed me as tall and very comfortable in her own skin since she wore very little make-up and a mink coat over a sweater, jeans, and gym shoes. A decade later, she was quoted that sex gets better with age. She’s telling the truth! Continue reading

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I Had a Little Adventure While You Were Dancing! A Photo Essay

Last week, my breast reconstruction doctor joined my radiologist in giving me the thumb’s up. I had been told I had no restrictions over the phone, but this appointment made it official. I won’t see either of them until next summer. Yeah baby. It’s all good! I just have to take a Tamoxifen pill every day.  I felt like celebrating so my husband Danny and I headed up to the mountains.

We left at 5:00 on Valentine’s Day and sailed up I-70. After Idaho Springs, we came to a halt and our progress could be measured in inches. I could have sworn I saw an elderly lady with a walker pass our car. Our two hour trip soon stretched to three. We worried that our 9:00 dinner reservation would be cancelled. Wet snowflakes flew and collected on the road. We suspected an accident had caused the jam. I used two of the hours stuck in traffic to hash out a screenplay I am working on. I figured out three plot lines, worked on casting it, finally decided on Robert Downey Jr., and we still crawled up the mountain highway.

Robert Downey Jr will be perfect for my screenplay

Image from Google+

At 8:30, I started cussing like the truck drivers crawling alongside us. We’d never make our dinner reservation. Approaching a curve in the road, we could see what happened. Idiots with front-wheel drive had spun out in the left lane tying up traffic for miles and miles! They had to be towed. I’ll never understand why Colorado stopped requiring chains for everyone without all-wheel drive. Once we got past the goofballs without chains or a clue, we drove through the Eisenhower Tunnel and flew down the mountain to Breckenridge. Continue reading

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“It’s Time to Vote!” said Roxy with a cramp in her paw

Thanks to everyone who competed. I’ll have another contest in March.

These captions are hysterical. Some of them got Roxy rolling on the floor laughing. She hasn’t laughed that hard since our family jumped for joy!

Roxy I

My daughter Courtney and son Kelly have made their decisions and the rest is up to you. Vote on the one you like the best and it will get featured on the Wild Ride. The photo of Roxy with the winner’s caption will appear on the right side of my blog. It will be up for a couple of weeks. Cool, right?

If your caption is a finalist, go out and tell your friends and family to come here and vote. Blast it out on Twitter and Facebook. Call your grandma. Email your uncle. Write a blog post. Give the link to your book club, your coworkers, and the random person behind you in the grocery store.

You have until 8:00 AM, Tuesday, February 25th. Mountain Standard Time.

The winner will be announced next Wednesday!

Good Luck!

Are you into pet photos on social media or have you hit the saturation point?

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The Ultimate Blog Party – Use Me and Abuse Me Days!

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Welcome to all of the new followers of the Wild Ride!  Here’s your chance to meet some of my friends. This virtual blog party always lasts for days.

Bring a link from ONE of your blog posts and paste it in my comment section. Then the party will begin. Click on a few. Check out their place. Tell them “Susie sent me!” Hang out for a while. Maybe you’ll like what you see and will subscribe. They’ll click back to check out your digs. Some may subscribe to your blog! See? It’s so much fun!

Only leave ONE link or you’ll end up in my spam filter. That can be so embarrassing.

If you leave a link, then click on a few. You wouldn’t go to a party with a doggy bag, fill up on food and take off, would you? Of course not. The more links you click, the more fun you’ll have!

DJ Ksmash in in the house and he’ll be spinning all day and night. Help yourself to the buffet and the bar. Rather have coffee? The barista is chillin’ and just waiting for your order. You might want to drink a Red Bull with me!

Have fun mingling and don’t forget to dance!

I’m going to take a few runs and will come back and read all of your posts.

Don’t forget to enter the caption contest! 

The more the merrier so spread the word on Twitter and Facebook!

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