Friday, December 30, 2005

Feline Friday -- Serena

I'm going to show you something that most people, including my family, don't ever get to see...

This is Serena, and she makes herself scarce when anyone is around. Somehow she seems to know when it's a weekend and the family will be in. She hides in my closet on top of some storage boxes behind my clothes. She has been with me almost 4 years now, and you would think she would be used to the kids and family, but she's not. I take pictures of her to prove to everyone that she really does exist. Honest, she's not a figment of my imagination!

These pictures were taken last weekend after everyone had left. The last car no sooner clears the gate, and out she comes. She just tolerates the dog, doesn't let Kelly get too close. I guess she is afraid of doggy cooties :o) I'm going to post a link over at Steven's (sometime)photoblog for his Feline-Friday post.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


It was quite chilly here this morning which is not good for this Auntie's old bones. It was 34ºF this morning at 7am. What you can't see clearly in this picture is the house behind mine. Their back yard is covered with a coating of frost, and a low lying cloud/fog is draping them in coldness and their roof is almost white (which is not good as it's a brown roof). Brrrrrr!

Well, Christmas is now officially over, and I stand on the edge of a new year. I wonder what changes 2006 will bring. I've never been one to make resolutions, so I won't start this year, but there are some hopes and dreams buried deep inside which hope to see the light of day. This year literally flew by, and I can only imagine that next year will also. Why is it, the older I get the faster time moves. Maybe it's just that I'm moving slower?

And what's up with this? Did you hear about them adding time this year? As quoted from an article in Linux Electrons.
::Washington, DC – On December 31, 2005 a “leap second” will be added to the world’s clocks at 23 hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). This corresponds to 6:59:59 pm Eastern Standard Time, when the extra second will be inserted at the U.S. Naval Observatory. This marks the 23rd leap second to be added to UTC, a uniform time-scale kept by atomic clocks around the world. ::

Now, I'm a little confused here. Does adding a second make time longer/slower, or does it make it shorter/faster? Can't we just leave well enough alone? I think I need to go get another sweet roll and cup of coffee and mull all this over some more. I will get back to you in a few seconds... by that time it will be February '06.

Sunday, December 25, 2005


Here's the latest picture of Santa and one of his elf's now that the gift giving is done!

With all the hoopla about the political correctness of the season: Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyful Winter Solstice, Happy Newton's Birthday, Fabulous Festivus, or whatever other celebration you cherish...

What ever you do to celebrate this time of year, please accept the very best wishes for the season -- from me,
Auntie Lyn

Saturday, December 24, 2005

The Saturday 6 with Patrick

Here we go. Patrick's Saturday 6

1. Which of the following generally costs you more: a normal trip to your barber/hairstylist, your usual lunch at your favorite restaurant, the most recent amount you paid to fill up your gas tank, or your biggest single contribution to a single charity in 2005?

Boy is that a tough one. The meals remain reasonable, the haircuts are getting to be so high, and the gasoline... let's not even go there trying to fill my gas hog. But, thank God, the charity contribution exceeded them all. :0)

2. What drink -- alcoholic or not -- do you drink entirely too much of?

Water? but then again, they say you can't drink enough water right?

3. Did you receive a Christmas card from anyone you didn't send one to? Did you send them a belated card in return?

This year this hasn't happened, but last year I missed two people entirely that sent a card out to me. I didn't bother to send out a card, but did give them a Christmas call on the phone.

4. Take this quiz (if you haven't already!): What is most important in your life?

Health is most important in your life.

Having a high focus on health indicates that you are very health-conscious and you realize that if you don't have your health, you have nothing. You are devoted to living healthy.

Life Piechart -

Take this quiz at

5. Before taking the quiz, which of its categories (career, love, money, health, family or fun) would you have said would be your answer?


6. Do you believe in soulmates? Do you think that there are at least one out there for every person, that there is a single "true" soulmate for every person, or that there aren't soulmates for everyone?

Yes, I do believe that there are "soul-mates" out there for each of us. In my opinion a soulmate is a person who helps to complete us, who helps us to grow. A soulmate brings out those qualities which lay dormant in us for one reason or another and helps us to become more than we thought we were capable of. I was so blessed to marry my best friend and soulmate. We each completed the other, like two halves that found their niche. Bob fitted into my jagged edges and softened them, and I rounded him out. We fit perfectly together. Do I believe that there is another "soulmate" out there for me, that I don't know. But if there is, I will welcome that person into my life. Oh, do I think that a soulmate is necessarily a lover/spouse type person, no. I believe a soulmate is a friend. It's just an added bonus when that person is the object of your love. Here's a link to our story in case you want to check it out. My other half...

Friday, December 23, 2005


Auntie Lyn's Pathetic Excuse for a Christmas Tree

It's not much, but it's up. Still having difficulties getting myself into the groove of Christmas, but gifts have been bought, at least I think I got everyone on my list. (BTW, the gifts under the tree are not what I bought, but what my aunt brought for the family. I haven't even thought about wrapping anything yet.) Christmas will be at my sisters this year with the nephews and nieces doing the planning and cooking the meal. I have offered my services to help with what ever is needed, but only have been instructed to bring plates, napkins and bowls. From what I hear we are going non traditional this year (Italian and something else). My mom is having a conniption fit about it. I promised her that if she just eats whatever they serve, that next weekend I will cook her a traditional Christmas dinner. I think I have her convinced.

A Christmas Haiku:
Shining from above,
the star, a beacon of hope...
the Christ Child of Love.

and a Christmas rhyme:
I tend to fight and push away,
the trappings of the season;
but down inside, within my heart
I know that Christ is the reason.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Ten Things...

I've been tagged by Patrick from Patrick's Place to add my input in this meme that is making it's way around blogland. Here are the instructions as I read them, "List ten things that make you happy (in no particular order) and tag five others to do the same."

Well here goes:

  1. When the little ones crawl up into my lap on Saturday night's while we adults are playing cards, and they plead with "Aunie In" to please come play with them.
  2. A toasted Italian BMT on fresh Italian Parmesan bread, even tho it's not on my diet.
  3. The peace of mind that comes from having paid my mortgage off early and not worrying about having to write that check the first of the month. (Which brings me to the next one.)
  4. Cutting back on my work schedule and not worrying that I wont have enough to make ends meet that month. Being able to say no to work when I want time to myself.
  5. When the air turns cool and dry and I can open the windows and turn off the air conditioning.
  6. Waking up early in the morning and realizing that I don't have to go anywhere that day, and I can roll over and go back to sleep.
  7. Playing with family photos on the computer and sharing them.
  8. Kelly (my golden) greeting me every time I come thru the door as if she hadn't seen me for 100 years or more even tho it's only been 15 minutes.
  9. A fresh hot Krispy Kreme donut.
  10. Dreaming about Bob and waking up feeling like he is still right beside me.

Now for those I tag:

  1. Alex (College Life)
  2. Jackie (Not Wierd, I'm Eccentric)
  3. Margo (MagogoSMusing)
  4. Virginia (Animal Spirits)
  5. Gabreael (Gabreael's Body, Mind & Spirit)

Friday, December 09, 2005



2 entries found for lineage.
To select an entry, click on it.
Main Entry: 1lin·e·age
Pronunciation: 'li-nE-ij also 'li-nij
Function: noun
1 a : descent in a line from a common progenitor b : DERIVATION
2 : a group of individuals tracing descent from a common ancestor; especially : such a group of persons whose common ancestor is regarded as its founder

Lineage, that is what makes us what we are. Whatever our ancestors were, we are the sum of them. So, I'm convinced something really odd must have taken place several generations ago in my family. I think some ole hunter must have gotten lonely and decided to take up with some bear in the woods, and somehow we got BEAR in our bloodline. How else can I explain that I totally relate to the above picture. It all makes perfect sense now, and kinda ticks me off that I can't find some big old stinky cave to crawl into and wait for winter to pass me by.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Eeek!! I only have 16 more shopping days!

My little stepping stones.
My great nieces and nephews 11/24/05.

This picture was taken this past Thanksgiving. There is Avery (8), Garrett (6), CJ (6), Brooke (3.5), Megan (3.75) and Bryce (9mos). [I added Bryce's picture with my photoshop.] My oldest great niece Amanda is missing, she will be 15 this January. Amanda lives with her mom, and we haven't seen her now in 4.5 years. Her mom punishes her ex (my nephew) by putting him and his family down to Amanda, returning our letters, gifts and cards, and telling her that we don't love her. I just wait for the day she trys to contact one of us. Her gifts are all here, all the cards and the letters that were returned. Proof that she was never forgotten by any of us, that no matter what her mom has said to her, she has always mattered to each of us.

I haven't done any of my holiday shopping for these kids, and I really need to get busy. (You know, it's a pain in the neck when working interferes with those things you want to do.) This weekend, Avery and Brooke's mom will meet my mom, sister and myself and help us as far as sizes and what the girls like. Next Friday, we will meet with Garrett and Bryce's mom for suggestions for them, then that next Saturday, CJ and Megan's mom will meet with us. Too bad we make all this so complicated.

I can't believe that Christmas is just around the corner, and I am so far behind, I don't really feel like doing much of anything. I haven't got my cards made, let alone sent out. No tree or decorations up yet. Only 2 presents for Bob's aunt bought so far. Seems like this might be a good year to crawl into a hole and wait it out, but that is just not an option. Well, I need to pull myself out of this funk and get busy. This weekend will be a good start I think ... or at least I hope.

Monday, December 05, 2005

what ornament are you?

What Christmas ornament are you?
Take this quiz and find out for yourself.

Here'e my reusults:
christmas angel
You are the Christmas Angel.

What Christmas Ornament are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Relocated J-Land Bloggers

Mentos Cannon

John Scalzi, from By the Way over at AOL Journals, was stating he is going to try out the Mentos Fountain tomorrow when Athena is not home. Well John, last Saturday the 26th, my nephew Steve and his wife brought the experiment to a birthday party we were having for 2 of my great nephews. They came equipped with six 2 liter bottles of diet Coke and 6 packages of Mentos.
Here is a picture of Steve loading up the cannon.

And then here is a picture of the end results. Needless to say, with an 8 year old, two 6 year olds, two 3½ year olds, a 9 month old and an Auntie that still likes to get into the thick of things, a sticky, icky time was had by all.
Better late than never... Patrick's Saturday 6 Answers:

1. Is it a "Christmas Tree" or a "Holiday Tree?"
It's definitely a Christmas Tree for me. I don't care if I'm politically correct or not, it is what it is. When I was a child, up until I was led astray by my wise old sister (6 years older than me), Santa Claus brought our Christmas Tree to the house. I would go to bed leaving a glass of milk with home made cookies that mom had made the day before, and when I got up in the morning, the tree would be there filled with my presents from Santa. Of course the empty milk glass and plate with a half eaten cookie would be on the coffee table where I had left it. Then when I was around 6 or 7 my sister told me that Santa didn't bring our tree, mom and daddy did. So, from then on, we would go out about the week before Christmas and find the perfect tree, hitting all the lots around town and usually winding back up at the first lot we went to. When we got home, daddy would cut the bottom off the stump and put it in a tub of water. Then on Christmas eve, daddy would bring in the tree, set it up and he and mom would put on the star, the lights, and the garland, then it was up to my sister and me to put on the decorations. We both had a special decoration we had gotten as babies, and that would be the first one we placed on the tree. My decoration was a blue pine cone that my mom's best friend gave me for my first Christmas. *see above* I still have that decoration, it's broke up where the filial goes into it, and I have to be very careful with it, but it is always the first one I hang, and there were a few years it was the only one I hung up.

2. When you purchase a DVD, what of the following are you most interested in watching first: the movie itself, the director's commentary, the deleted scenes, the bloopers or the behind-the-scenes documentary, and why?
I watch the movie first, then I watch the out takes and bloopers, then the deleted scenes. There have only been a few movies I watched where I was even interested in watching the commentaries. The last one I can remember watching was "Miss Congeniality" and the commentary was with Sandra Bullock and co-screen writer Marc Lawrence. I stumbled upon that one by mistake, and it was funnier than the movie in places.

3. What would you most like to accomplish before the year is over?
Can't really think of anything I would like to accomplish, maybe getting this blog more in line with how I would like it to look. I would like to get a new computer and get it all set up before the first of the year. I have a printer I bought 5 months ago, but I wont take it out of the box and install it on this antique. I want to run it on a new computer. By the time I get it done the warranty will be run out and the software obsolete.

4. Take this quiz: After you enter your birthday, you'll be given a lot of facts about your age and astrology: How old are you in dog years?
Your age is the equivalent of a dog that is 7.93111545988258 years old. (You old hound dog, you!)

5. From the same quiz, what does it say your "Life Path Number" is, and do you agree with its description?
Your life path number is 6. Yes, it pretty much describes me to a T, even down to the negative traits.

6. Do you have a piece of jewelry with your birthstone in it? If so, how often do you wear it?
My birthstone is listed as an Alexandrite. No I don't own any piece of jewlery with that stone in it, but the alternative birthstones are pearl, moonstone and opal. I do have a pair of pearl earrings that I wear. I tend to wear the same jewlery every day for years. The most that I change are the pearl earrings for gold balls maybe once every 6-8 months or so.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

talking heads

Well, today I asked journalseditor Joe for my Christmas present and he gave it to me. All I wanted was one of the executive heads to speak with the journalers, just give us an email address or phone number. We would make sure that they would hear what we had to say.

My wish was granted... This is directly copied out of Joe's journal "Magic Smoke"


Joe has told you that the senior executives here at AOL have been listening to your opinions and comments about the addition of ads on AOL Journals. I'm stopping by Magic Smoke to let you know he's been straight with you on that point.

I'm not here to report that we're changing our strategy on the ads. The ads are staying for the foreseeable future. Advertising is an important part of how we make money, and we're not ashamed of that.

I'll admit we'd all love a “do-over” when it comes to how this was communicated. On that score, the best we can do now is to work harder at making sure big changes don't occur again without proper communication.

We've learned a lot in the last two weeks... so thank you for your comments here and in email. We've heard loud and clear that you are passionate about what you write about in your blogs. Some of you are convinced that the addition of ads destroys that experience. I am less certain of that. I can't reconcile it with the fact that we have wonderful, passionate communities thriving in ad-supported pages in message boards, Groups, Chat, Hometown, Email, AIM... really across the entire network both inside the paid service and out.

Just like you, we don't all see eye-to-eye on this internally. That's understandable. Since AOL Journals had no ads for so long, I can understand why some believed that they never would. Some of you have moved on because of this and that's understandable too. We're sorry this change has affected the way you feel about us. We thank you for the contribution you made while you were here. We will miss your words. We will miss your passion. If you've moved on to another blog provider, we hope you'll maintain the relationships you've made here. You'll always be welcome in J-Land no matter where you choose to blog.

We've also learned how important the J-Land community is to the majority of you who have elected to stay. You are important to this community and to us, and we appreciate the understanding and support that you've shown. A special thanks to all the folks who have thrown a virtual hug around Joe here at Magic Smoke and in email. Thank you for putting this bump in the road in your rearview mirror. We're excited about moving on as well.

I've asked the team to double down and speed up the delivery of some new features you've requested. They are eager to get to it. Some of my favorites that are coming before the end of the year:

Buddy List Rostering: instantly set your Buddy List as the "roster" for your private Journal - changes to your Buddy List will update the roster automatically.
Blog This: a new feature that allows easy creation of new journals and blog entries that link back to other posts.
Partner Ping: makes it easier for 3rd party indexers such as Feedster, Technorati, BlogPulse, PubSub, Google and others to receive updates to your Journals. This will make your blog easier to find.

Early in 2006, we're working on mobile blogging, online presence, skinning, shared journals and other features that you've mentioned in the past. We would love to hear from you about which of these features you think you'd use the most and why.


Bill Schreiner, VP AOL Community Programming.
Email me at:, or leave your comments here.

Boy am I glad I was a good girl this year and got my wish of a talking Head.

Good ole Bill talks about how AOL wishes they could have a "do-over" but only about how the addition of the ads took place. Come on Bill, I'm an adult, there are no do-overs in this world. I am the only one responsible for my actions, no one else. This played out the way AOL wanted it to play out. Now, be an adult and accept responsibility for your actions. The manner in which the ad's showed up is only one part of the problem... If AOL had addressed the issue 2 weeks ago with the paying members of J-land, things could have been made better, easier to swallow, but to wait 2½ weeks and then continue with the same rhetoric, doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

Face it, AOL sucks bog water! AOL doesn't care about their subscribers. They don't care about their own integrity. They don't care about public opinion. The almighty dollar rules their heart and minds. Bill said it himself, ::
Advertising is an important part of how we make money, and we're not ashamed of that.:: So we have advertisements in our blogs, in our email, on our home pages, in our IM's, in the chat rooms, and message boards, everywhere where there is 1 bit of space, AOL has slipped in an advertisement spamming its paid members, all the while touting to the public that AOL is hard on spammers. What a joke! Tomorrow is officially the end of my connection with AOL. They can slide down that slippery slope all they want to now, but at least I wont be in the sled with them.