Twelve Warning Signs The Holidays Have Taken Over

The holidays are never perfect. It’s a hectic time of year and somehow they always take over my life.

Although I dream of a wonderful holiday where everything has been carefully planned and executed. Stockings hang near a roaring fire. Wrapped presents are piled high around a decorated tree. Family and friends gather round the piano and sing while the heavenly aroma of a gourmet dinner cooks in the oven. That never happens.

I’ve compiled a list of warning signs for you!

You know the holidays are taking over your life when:

Every surface in your house is sticky.

It would be easier to move than to clean.

https://31.media.tumblr.com/85813c670a426d8a9a4dc2de4f5a839d/tumblr_inline_n307q0h9o31rt6qr4.gif Continue reading

The Nutcracker Sweet – A Video

A few days ago, I mentioned a few of my Christmas traditions, but excluded my favorite. There were many guesses. Some readers were right. BAKING. We used to watch my daughter, Courtney, dance in the Nutcracker. I had an idea. I could combine the two!

gingerbread dancers 1

I saw an adaptation of the traditional gingerbread man on The Rachael Ray Show and had an BRILLIANT idea. I had to bake them and make a movie. It seemed like the logical thing to do after creating 80+ handmade Christmas cards, right?

With a little bit of help from my daughter, Courtney, the “show” was a success!  It’s been years since she performed in a ballet. *chuckle*

Tune in to see what I’m talking about. It’s a totally sweet production! You can hear me cracking up while making the video. Continue reading

Disaster Area in My Rear View

Decades ago, I played with a three-way mirror while my mother tried on dresses. It seemed magical to study my profile and the  curly back of my head. While standing in my Mary Janes and appraising my rear view, I must have thought, “Good enough.”

Self portrait - Susie Lindau (McCartan) 1

I always thought the back of my head resembled this self-portrait painted in college.

Flash forward years and many hairstyles later:

While leaving the physical therapist last summer, the receptionist practically leapt over the counter and tackled me. “You have a hole in your head!” She shouted. Everyone in the waiting room looked up from their cell phones and magazines. They shook their heads in disgust.

“What do you mean?” I replied. Continue reading

“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?

How to Survive the Polar Vortex

polar vortex 1

In case you haven’t heard, half the US is in a cyclonic weather pattern. It seems the center of the Polar Ice Cap has relocated somewhere between Madison, Wisconsin and Cleveland. The Polar Vortex is threatening to stick around and continue to break low temperature records all over the world. It spawned Winter Storm Leon which trounced through the South. It sprinkled the white stuff on several states which rarely see snow and wreaked havoc with highways and airports. His brother Maximus is bounding in from the west and is licking his heels. Is there no end to PV’s fury?

Noaa_current_snow_ice_canada_usa_1-6-2014Snow cover on January 6th, 2014

Looks like an ice age to me. Will spring ever arrive in our Northern states?

Breck snowstorm 2011

Here are some tips to help you survive the coldest winter on record.

  • Wear a hat to bed. Heat rises and your pillow could cause your ears to freeze off.
  • Get acclimated. Strip down and jump in the snow. Roll around and count to 10. Then hit a warm shower. Repeat this exercise a couple times a day and soon you’ll be wearing shorts and a t-shirt while picking up your newspaper from the snowy curb.
  • Quit shaving. This goes for women too. All those little hairs trap body heat. Make a waxing appointment for May or June.
  • Sleep with a friend, a lover, a neighbor or all of the above. Hey. This is serious. You have to stay warm.
  • Don’t have any friends? Buy or adopt a dog. With a record-breaking winter like this, you’ll need three of them to keep you warm. You’re a cat person? You’ll need twenty.
  • Layer up. To stay warm indoors, slip on your Lycra workout clothes and wool socks. Throw on your long undies, sweat pants, turtleneck, and wool sweater. Don’t go outdoors without a one-piece ski or snowmobile suit, hat, face mask and goggles. Wear wool gloves under your mittens. Make sure to pee before you dress.
  •  Start baking bread, buns, cakes and cookies. Leave the oven door open after you finish to help heat the room. The couple extra pounds you will gain will create a nice layer of fat to keep you warm.

Continue reading

Christmas Stalkings

One year, I took extreme measures to find the perfect Christmas gift.

We used to own a wholesale toy and school supply business. On Christmas Eve, my husband Danny would come home with a trash bag full of toys. We would spend hours wrapping the little gifts. Our children grew up and we sold the business. Soon I received my children’s Christmas lists which took me on quests encompassing much of the Denver Metro area.

One year, my son Kelly asked for a Playstation 2. It was the only item on his list. I thought, “Wow! This will be so easy this year. I’ll pick it up and buy a couple of small presents. DONE!”

PS4-Console-wDS4

Not so fast. I walked into Target and stood in front of an empty shelf. I asked the salesman when the next shipment was due to arrive. “We never know when they’re coming in.”  I drove to Best Buy and several other stores. The salespeople gave me the same response.

I started to panic. Where would I find the holy grail of Christmas gifts this year if they manufactured so few of them? I compiled a list of stores and started calling every day. I started recognizing the operator’s voices. Continue reading