Tuesday, December 22, 2009

See You Next Year!

Like many of you, I'll be taking a blog break to spend the next few weeks with my family. I hope you all enjoy special times with your family and friends. See you in 2010!
What does my blog have in store next year? I have three vlogs in the works, my quest for an agent, more tunes for Tuesday, concert reviews (I haven't been to one in almost two months! I'm slipping...), poetry, a meme tag from MG Higgins, writing stuff, excerpts from my grade school diary, and general nonsense! Hope to see you then!
A quick thank you to author Mary Rand Hess! I won her book, The Day I Met the Nuts, on her blog last week! The Day I Met the Nuts is a story about food allergies and is published by Earth Day Publishing. Thanks so much, Mary!!
I'm still listening to my Christmas mix on the iPod with my fave Elvis, Jewel, Weezer, Smashing Pumpkins, My Chemical Romance and No Doubt holiday tunes.
But here's my all time favorite.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Poetry Friday, Holiday Fun

Holiday festivities have begun! A Christmas party last weekend, my preschooler's Christmas program this morning, my daughter's class Christmas party this afternoon, a family get together tomorrow night and the list goes on.
Here's some easy and festive food fun for the kiddos.

1/2 cup dry oatmeal
1 TB red and green sugar crystals or glitter
Mix up!
Write on the bag...
Sprinkle this reindeer food out tonight.
The moonlight will make it sparkle bright.
As the reindeer fly and roam,
this will guide them to your home.

Fun holiday food for kids:
Here's a nutritious and fun snack that I make throughout the year for my kids. For the holidays, I use green and red jello. I brought this to my daughter's class party today.

Cantaloupe Jello Slices

1. Cut cantaloupe in half and spoon out seeds. I put the cantaloupe halves in a bowl to keep them steady.

2. Boil one cup of water, mix boiling water with one 3 oz package of Jello gelatin.

3. Let cool five minutes then fill holes of cantaloupe with jello water.

4. Put in refrigerator for four hours or more to firm.

And here's a link to the most famous Christmas poem of all!

Love this quote:
The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other. - Burton Hillis

Have a blessed holiday!
Susan Taylor Brown has the Poetry Roundup today!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Teacher Gifts

It's that time of year again. Time for gifts for everyone, including your child's teacher. Most teachers seriously do not expect a holiday gift from their students, but it is a nice gesture. Your child's teacher spends the majority of the week with your child. What are some good ways to thank them for this?
One: Thank them! Yes, especially if money is tight this year, write a sincere thank you note to your child's teacher. Mention specific things on how he/she helped your child or lessons you or your child enjoyed. Your child can also make his/her own thank you or holiday card as well.

Two: Gift Card. Let them splurge a little or be practical. I know from experience that most teachers use their own money for some supplies in the classroom. They can spend the gift card on themselves or use it towards the classroom. Better yet, have a parent collect $5-10 from each student to buy one gift card or certificate from the class. If a class of 20 each gives $5, that's a nice $100 gift certificate for the teacher and a small price to pay for the students' families as well.

Three: You and your child can create something for your teacher. Every year when my children and I hang ornaments on our tree, I put up homemade ones from former students and tell my children about that student who made me the ornament. A parent also once made me a beautiful ceramic Christmas tree that adorns my house each year.

Four: Supplies for the classroom. Ask ahead of time if the teacher needs anything specific from extra pencils or paper to manipulatives or books (most likely he/she will have needs these days).

I'm a former teacher who now buys gifts for my children's teachers. In the past, I have given a Target gift card with sometimes a book to the teachers. This year money is tighter, so I bought Frango chocolate mints on sale and a book for the teacher to use in the classroom. For my preschooler's teacher, I bought a book on games from all around the world (they study a different country each week). For my second grader's teacher, I bought Insectlopedia by Douglas Florian. I looked on the website to see the second grade curriculum and insects and poetry were both on the list so I knew this would be a good fit. For my fifth grader's teacher, I bought Operation Yes! by Sara Lewis Holmes. I just read this book and it's a great, inspirational story that fifth grade boys and girls will enjoy.

What gifts did I enjoy when I was a teacher? Ones that stick out in my mind are the homemade ornaments mentioned above. One student gave me a Christopher Radko angel ornament that was lovely, but what stands out in the gift was the sentiment along with it. The parent told me I was an angel to her daughter which I really warmed my heart. I only received a gift card once or twice and that seriously was like a little bonus, too. Not everyone enjoys extra food at the holidays, but I've never said no to a box of chocolates either!

So if you do decide to give a gift for your child's teacher, give it some thought, write a sincere sentiment to go along with it, and your child's teacher will appreciate it! Do you have any other good ideas for teacher gifts?

Here's a holiday tune from the Smashing Pumpkins. I just heard that lead singer Billy Corgan was dating Jessica Simpson! That is a unique match. I hope some good new Smashing Pumpkins tunes comes out of it at least!
Enjoy "Christmastime." I love this song!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Wish List

I do like the holidays. It's crazy busy, but it is fun to buy for others. It's even enjoyable to get a few merry gifts, too. I'm having trouble this year though making my "wish list." My family is very practical and has the adults and the children make a wish list each Christmas. You get what you want, and no one has to return anything, and well, it's just easier.
Since my sister and I were in junior high, my mom has taken us shopping the day after Thanksgiving to buy us our Christmas presents. She said she was sick of returning gifts we didn't love back to the store (who has time for that?), and it's a fun day of girlie shopping. When I met my husband, he couldn't believe that's the way we received our gifts, but we really, really like it that way. We even still do this! Yes, my mother takes her two adult daughters out to the mall. My sister and I all try on clothes in the same fitting room (which isn't as much fun for me to see my sis and my bare midriffs side by side as my sister is extremely tall and thin, but hey, we're family), and my mom even squeezes in for commentary. You want honesty if that shirt looks tight or the jeans look awesome!
This year I'm getting two pairs of jeans, two cute tops and a belt from my mom! I know it sounds a little weird, but we love the day together and sometimes we even forget an item or two when it comes to Christmas Day. Don't worry, we buy Mom lunch that day!
Besides this shopping trip, we also make lists for the inlaws and my dad's side of the family, and this year I'm having trouble making mine. This year our household has been majorly budgeting due to the recession, and I really haven't splurged all year on myself. I received a TJ Maxx gift card for Christmas last year and used a little at a time to stretch it out til October! You'd think I'd have a full list, but I guess I'm realizing I don't need much.
So, I have a few CD's on my list, a few books, a Wii fitness game, and that's about it. I cannot think of anything else! I do love concerts so was thinking of putting a Ticketmaster gift certificate on there....but is that lame? I can't afford the price of good seats for my fave concerts right now, so that would make me happy. I know, I know I should wish for world peace and a publishing contract, but seriously we are living in a material world (and if I could really wish for those and they would happen, I would!).

Any suggestions for my wish list? What's on yours?

Really, all I want for Christmas is front row to a My Chemical Romance concert. (They aren't on tour right now, but I hope they will be in 2010!)
Here's their version of "All I Want for Christmas Is You."

Sunday, December 6, 2009


I love to laugh, and I'll share some things that made me giggle this week.
1. Rihanna and Shy Ronnie
Did anyone watch SNL last night? I watched the first fifteen minutes or so and this SNL Digital Short made me laugh. Andy Samberg is always so funny, and Rihanna has an incredible voice. This is goofy, but the song is actually pretty catchy, too. I can't get this song out of my head. Now I'll be singing "Speak up!" for days. (the clip is PG-13)

Adrienne posted about this My Life is Average website and I've checked it several times since. It cracks me up. A sample MLIA post:
"Today I got a papercut opening a Bandaid box. MLIA."

3. I've mentioned that the tv show, The Soup, makes me laugh every time I watch it. Another favorite is How I Met Your Mother. My third favorite comedy show this year is the new one, Modern Family. Anyone else watch it? The dad is deadpan funny!

4. My pups
I dressed up my dogs for a holiday picture. Don't they look cute? My son said it was animal cruelty to do this to them, but it made me laugh anyway. But I only made them wear these silly outfits for ten minutes. Daisy, my puppy, really did act like she was humiliated, so I felt slightly bad. Goofy, my old dog, didn't mind, but probably because she's blind and didn't realize how ridiculous she and Daisy looked!

5. Tabitha at Writer Musings is having an amazing book giveaway. Go to her blog and comment and/or follow and you can win one of three piles of awesome books!! That will make you smile!

What made you laugh lately?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Tuesday, December 1

Can you believe it is December already? Where does the time go? This week I'll be putting up my Christmas decorations. Luckily my kids are wonderful about helping me put the tree and ornaments up while listening to Elvis, Jewel, and Chicago Christmas carols. I still need to buy that Weezer Christmas CD....I also know seven people that have a birthday today (four friends, my cousin, my goddaughter and my grandma!). Happy Birthday!
Today is also World Aids Day. I'm wearing red today to commemorate it. I also became a fan of (RED) on Facebook, you can also go RED on Twitter too! Click here to see other RED products that support AIDS programs in Africa. Also, find more info at my last year's World Aids Day post!
Today's Tune for Tuesday is by the band, Creed. I think you either love or hate Creed. I so loved that band in its heyday. I spent way too much money on a concert ticket to see them once, because it was sold out. It was a great concert, but I cringe thinking how much I spent to go. I have also seen the lead singer, Scott Stapp, solo in concert (for much less money and much better seats). I went to a concert to see INXS (with the new lead singer, JD from the Rockstar:INXS show), and Scott Stapp happened to be opening for them! Speaking of him, I have read that he's a bit of a d-bag, and that may have contributed to Creed's break up. The other members formed a band called Alter Bridge with another lead singer for a while. But now Creed is back together, and hopefully Scott is more amiable. But the guy does have a great voice!
Some of my favorite Creed songs are "My Own Prison," "With Arms Wide Open," and "My Sacrifice." When my oldest son was 2 1/2 and in a Mom and Me class with me, the children would take turns picking songs for the class to sing. Usually it was "Wheels on the Bus" or "Itsy Bitsy Spider." J-Man stood up and sang the chorus to "My Sacrifice!"
Today's tunes for Tuesday are by Creed. One current song and one from 1998.
"One" is an inspirational song (and my favorite Creed song) that fits World Aids Day.

"Rain" is their newest release from their album Full Circle. (and it's the title of the song, not the hunky singer/actor that Ello keeps posting about ;)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Things I Like

Paul Michael Murphy of Murphblog made a list of things he likes and has encouraged other bloggers to do so. Tracy, Anita, MG Higgins, and more have followed in this internet sensation. So, I will too. And you should too! Come on, everyone's doing it!

I'll start by saying of course God, family, friends are first in my heart, but here are some every day things that this girl likes (and is thankful for).

1. Snuggling

2. Fountain Coca Cola

3. Being close to the stage at a concert

4. Chocolate Cake from Red Lobster or Portillo's

5. Facebook

6. The Soup on E! (Joel McHale is hilarious.)

7. Arched eyebrows

8. My iPod

9. Sunny 74 degree days

10. My bed

11. Laughing

12. Buddy the Elf

13. Puppies (especially mine)

14. Super Target

15. Hoop earrings

16. Red lipstick (only on special occasions or my kids faces would always be covered in red)

17. Singing and/or listening to rock n' roll music (especially MCR, Crue, Foo, A7X, Killers, Papa Roach, Buckcherry and more)

18. Top three rockstars: Nikki Sixx, Dave Grohl, Gerard Way

19. Chinese food specifically egg rolls and Hong Kong Chicken

20. Finishing a poem or a manuscript

21. Loving a book so much I can't put it down

22. Photographs

23. Creme brulee with fresh berries around it

24. Comedies (tv shows and movies)

25. Top Three Actors: Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Matthew McConaughey

26. The smell of burning leaves

27. The smell of my kids hair when it's just washed

28. Ketchup (we go through a huge jug a month)

29. Chocolate milk

30. Sarcasm (that's not hurtful)

31. Did I mention concerts?

32. Wii (especially Wii Fit and Rock Band)

33. Commenting and comments on blogs ;)

34. 35. I also like music videos and.... I like to move it, move it!

Monday, November 23, 2009

New Moon on Monday

Oh, yes, I did. I saw New Moon this weekend. Did you hear that it broke the record for biggest opening day? So like so many of the female persuasion, Friday night was girl's night out to the movie theater. We arrived almost an hour early to make sure we got a seat. I purchased my ticket earlier in the week through Fandango.com. My dinner that night was buttered popcorn and these tasty treats.

I have never gone to a movie on opening weekend before. Even though the screaming teenage girls were loud, I had fun observing which parts they liked and which parts they thought were cheesy. I was surprised that Jacob received more hoots and hollers when he first appeared on the screen than Edward (though he got plenty of catcalls). The biggest burst of cheers and screams came when Jacob took off his shirt to mop up the blood on Bella's forehead (if you saw it, I know you remember that seen!). There were a few parts that many girls burst out laughing (one being of a scene where Bella and Edward run through a meadow). It was a cheesy scene, so I laughed at the scene and at the laughter too. The book of course was better, but the movie entertained me. It was good, not great, but I enjoyed my night at the movies.

What amazed and surprised me most about New Moon was the number of people I knew that saw it on opening weekend. Like I said, I rarely go to the movie theater, let alone on opening weekend. On Facebook, there were so many posts of friends going to see New Moon. I went to a family birthday party and many of the ladies just went to the movie or were planning on going the next day. Amazing! We enjoyed hashing over the scenes and of course stating whether we were Team Edward or Team Jacob. (I'm Team Jacob) Are you a sucker for Edward or do you howl for Jacob (I stole that cheesy line from an article by the way)?

Also, did anyone else notice that the movie was released during the week of the new moon of this month???? Eclipse is my favorite book of the series, so I will certainly be in the theater watching that movie next summer!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New Blogger/New Prize/New Tune!

I want to welcome a new blogger to the wonderful world of blogging! My best friend, Becky who you may have read about in my road trip posts, started a blog! She is writing a novel about a dog rescued from a puppy mill, and she also writes for a local newspaper. Her blog is Truths and Tails, please stop by and welcome her to the blog community! She's candid, she's funny, and she's a best friend of creatures big and small (and don't even try getting any dirt about me from her ;).

I also want to thank Donna at Word Wrangler for having a free verse poetry contest. I'm more of a rhymer, but her contest forced me to do something different...and I won! Thank you, Donna, for the Nikki Grimes poetry book as my prize!

Also, congratulations to Debra Shubert of Write on Target for snagging an agent! Read about how perseverance, her blog and twitter helped make this happen for her! It's a fun, inspirational story!!

Today's tune for Tuesday is just a tune that I've been singing along to lately. I'm more of a rocker, but sometimes a pop song makes me dance and sing, too! The video is Lady Gaga's song, "Paparazzi" from her debut album The Fame. (I should've been Lady Gaga for Halloween, what a great costume that would have been!!) If you are a True Blood viewer, notice that Eric the vampire (Alexander Skarsgard) is in this video (and in the picture above).

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Dare 2 Dream

Last Thursday my sister and I attended the Dare 2 Dream benefit concert to hear some great music and to support pediatric blood cancer research. When I was a teacher, one of the students (who was also the daughter of a bus driver) at our school died of leukemia. It was absolutely heartbreaking. Cancer is such a difficult illness in the first place, but when it affects a child it is all the more tragic. We were happy to be part of this event and support the children in need. Of course I'm happy to listen to live music, so to listen to it and support a great cause is twice as nice!
I took the train to Chicago to meet my sister Denise, and we walked in to the House of Blues in time to hear the second musical act, The Lovehammers. Does anyone remember the NBC show, Rockstar: INXS where the members of INXS tried to find a new lead singer? I loved that show, and the runner up was the singer, Marty Casey, from the Lovehammers, a Chicago area band. Marty Casey also attended the University of Illinois a few years behind me! I had always wanted to see the Lovehammers, so I was excited to finally hear them live. They were great!
Next was Gavin Rossdale - lead singer of 90's band Bush, husband of Gwen Stefani, and now solo artist. Last year I bought several songs from his latest solo album, Wanderlust. His song, "Love Remains the Same" was a featured Tune for Tuesday also last year. This was my first time seeing him live, and I love his music even more now! A 6'1", very lean and muscular Gavin played several songs from his Bush career like "Machinehead," "Glycerine," and "Come Down." He also played favorites of mine from his solo album and sang a cover of Stevie Nick's "Landslide," another one of my favorite songs. Here is the actual set list. (Thanks to Tony for the pics, I had to check my camera at the concert!)

This man can rock it out and make the ladies swoon. During the rock songs, he jumped up and down and headbanged so much I thought he was going to bump his head on the microphone stand! During the slower songs, he'd hold onto a (very lucky) front row gal's hand and look into her eyes and sing the song to them! He did this with many of the ladies in the front row, and they were smiling ear to ear. (And I tell you next Gavin Rossdale concert I go to, I am getting my buttinsky in that front row!!) My sis and I were pretty darn close to the stage, but I'm getting to the venue earlier next time to secure a front row spot! That man is one swoon worthy rockstar!


My sister and I had a fun girly night out. The benefit ended at 9:30 (this old lady wishes all concerts ended this early!), so we went out for a martini (chocolate martini for me) afterwards. And I learned a have a very low tolerance for hard liquor. One martini got me loopy I tell you!

Here's Gavin singing Bush song, "Glycerine" at Dare 2 Dream! (sigh!)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

This is Happiness

Today's Tune for Tuesday is by Gavin Rossdale -lead singer of 90's rock band Bush, current solo artist, and husband of Gwen Stefani. Gavin will also be on the TV show Criminal Minds on CBS Wednesday. My sister and I went to his concert last week (review in a few), and it was awesome! He is an amazing frontman (and a cutie to boot)!
Here are a few other contests to check out!

Wow! Women on Writing is holding their fall 2009 Flash Fiction contest. Deadline is November 30! (My entry is titled Temptation and is a little saucy!)

Word Wrangler Donna at is having a free prose poetry contest. You can win a Nikki Grimes poetry book! This contest ends today!

Sherrie has even more contests listed on this blog post!

And for Star Wars geeks like me, Hasbro is having a contest for the best diorama using Star Wars figurines. (I wish I had time to enter this one...)

A big thank you to author Rena Jones! She sent me a beautiful Yellowstone book and a yummy candy bar for winning her photo caption contest!

Here's a bonus Gavin video with Gavin actually in it, too. He has his shirt off in it. (I seriously yelled "Take your shirt off!" at the concert. I'm not proud of myself. My sister told me to yell it louder, which made me laugh because at the Motley Crue concert we attended together, she was disgusted with Tommy Lee and his pleas for girls to lift up their shirts!)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Road Trip Day 5 - Our Old Stomping Grounds

Becky and I continued our road trip up Illinois on to Champaign, Illinois. Not only did Becky and I grow up in the same neighborhood, but we attended the same grade school, high school, and even college - the University of Illinois (see picture of us our first semester of college). We decided to be roommates in the dorms our freshman year. Everyone said that it would be the end of our friendship, we'd get on each other's nerves. But we were friends already for so long and had only one true fight (over a boy) that we knew we could live with one another in harmony. And we did, our friendship grew, and we only had one fight (over a beer) in the two years we lived together.

Here's a pic of us below in front of Snyder Hall, the dorm we lived in (Room 306). We lived in that small room and made many friendships (and plenty of shenanigans - some I'd be happy to tell you, some I may keep to myself!) in those halls. Half of our floor was for girls and half the floor was for guys separated by a locked door. One funny fact about Room 306 is that when we connected our TV, we'd only get two channels: CBS and Mtv (maybe another reason I love music). All we had to do was fill out a maintenance report and probably have it fixed. Did we? No, for some odd (lazy) reason, we didn't for TWO years! Our daily routine was pretty much this: go to classes, come home and take a nap, watch the video countdown on Mtv, go to dinner in the cafeteria, study (yes, we really did study and got good grades!) and at about 11pm go out! Yes, go out at 11pm. We didn't go out every night, but I'd say 4-5 nights a week, we'd be social! This was our freshman year schedule. Our sophomore year we both joined sororities and the Human Development and Family Studies Club, so we had added meetings and events as well. Word on the street is that Snyder Hall is now considered the "Clean Teen" dorm: no drinking, no smoking, no opposite sex sleepovers. What is funny about that is that is probably what the rules were when we went there, but no one really enforced them (or maybe our floor was really sneaky...I remember a time where some guys smuggled in a Party Ball full of beer).

Becky and I thoroughly enjoyed exploring our old campus together. It was a beautiful fall day, and we walked on "the quad" where many buildings where we attended classes were (see the Illini Union in the background where we occasionally went bowling!). The students looked young and scholarly, many were texting and walking. I wished I'd have brought a backpack to pretend I was going to class. If we'd had more time, I may have even sat in on one in the auditorium!


We then headed towards where our favorite bars/hangouts were in town. Here's us in front of Kam's, the bar we frequented the most. We were all set to go in and have a Coke and "take a lap" there, but it was closed. Back in college, we'd take a lap and see who was there and if anyone there was cute! Anyone else remember the terms scam and mash? (To scam was to flirt, mash was make out. There was plenty of both going on at Kam's back in the day.) A few of our favorite restaurants and bars were gone, but we ate lunch at a pub that was there way back when. We also had to stop and buy Illini wear for ourselves and our kids! (Becky and I even bought the same tshirt.)
After our trip down Green Street and memory lane, we headed north home. We still had plenty to talk about (now mostly reminiscing and laughing about crazy college days) on the three hours left in our road trip. I feel so fortunate to have a lifelong friend that I can take off with like that and also fortunate to come home to be smothered in kisses from my family.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Road Trip Day 1-4!

As many of you know, last week I took a road trip with my best friend, Becky. Becky, our other best friend Mary (who now lives in Spain), and I grew up in the same neighborhood. We flew to Fort Myers, Florida on Sunday night. I was a little nervous being away from my kids for so long (I cried when they left!), but I knew that a getaway would be good for a mom of three who rarely gets a day away, let alone five!

The plane ride started out as silly as expected. Becky and I were talking in our seats, and I was holding my Us Weekly magazine against my face as we spoke. Later Becky says, "Kelly, you have blue stripes on your face!" (see picture) We giggled and giggled. (Sorry to the man next to us, we probably laughed and talked most of the trip) Then the beverage guy comes along and I drink my water in about one gulp. A few minutes later, he asks if I want more (Why, yes I do!) Becky asks if she could have some more Coke. (Why, yes she can.) I tell Becky that I brought some Reese's peanut butter cups for us in my purse. I hand her stuff in my purse as I dig through it for chocolate! Then her filled to the brim cup full of Coke decides to slide down the tray and all over my lap! So my pants are soaked. What do we do? We laugh. Then laugh some more. What else can you do?

That night we ate a nice dinner out and slept at her parents' house. The next morning we took a walk with her dad and his dog to coffee where many neighbors congregate with their dogs. We had chocolate milk (we don't drink coffee). We walked about three miles (me in sandals) then her parents drove us to beautiful Captiva Island. We ate lunch and layed next to the pool overlooking the ocean. It was heavenly. I was so relaxed. I haven't layed by a pool minus kids in over ten years! We had a delicious dinner and hit the sack since our three day trek in the car home would start the next morning.


Next day we got up and started our 1400+ mile trek home. Has anyone else driven in northern Florida? I have never seen so many billboards for strip clubs in my life! Yikes! During the long ride we also had my iPod going and talked, talked, and talked some more. Becky and I also were excited to see cotton fields for the first time. We made it to Macon, Georgia, ate at a Mexican restaurant, checked Facebook, and went to bed.

On Wednesday we drove to Atlanta, Georgia. What a clean, picturesque city! Becky and I also noted that people were extra friendly in the south. We stopped at World of Coca Cola. Becky and I are both fans of Coke, so we knew we'd get a kick out of it. We saw lots of Coke memoribilia, saw a few short films and a 4D show. The best part was going to the Tasting Room. There were over 60 Coca Cola products from all over the world in fountain stations. We tasted Inca Cola from Peru, raspberry tea from Spain, my favorite Barq's Red Cream Soda, and more. It was fun walking around sipping different drinks. Most were good, some were not! I also bought a red Coca Cola tshirt made from recyclable bottles!
Here's the Coca Cola polar bear with us. I thought he was a statue because he didn't move for the first couple, but when I approached him, he reached to grab me and I screamed!!


After Atlanta, we drove until 8pm until we reached Mount Vernon, Illinois. We ate in a sports bar in the hotel, and I seriously went to sleep right when my head hit the pillow. It was a long day (and yes, we were still talking incessantly the whole way!). More tomorrow...

Sunday, November 1, 2009

This is Halloween.

My family loves Halloween. We enjoyed trick or treating yesterday in the neighborhood. It was a colder Halloween than years past, so halfway through I left the kids with the grandmas and ran and got the car. The houses in our neighborhood are far apart, so it was worth it! My ten year old son wanted to trick or treat alone with his fifth grade friend, but I'm not ready for that yet. They sometimes walked a few steps ahead of us, but I really don't think they minded sticking with us after all. His friend also spilled the beans that my son has his first girlfriend. As if Halloween isn't frightening enough!

So what did the Polark family dress up as? My oldest son J-Man went as some scary pumpkin face guy, my drama queen daughter went as a movie star, and my youngest son went as Star Wars clone trooper, Commander Fox. I was a punk rocker complete with lip curl and tattoos. My husband was a convict in an orange jumpsuit.
As I was putting the children to bed Friday night, the door bell rang, hubby went to answer it, made some screams and yelled "Escaped Convict!". My daughter jumped out of bed to see (she's the brave one - or she doesn't know what a convict is). Hubby then ran upstairs in his orange Department of Corrections jumpsuit. I was more annoyed than scared as he riled up the kids, but the last two nights I've had escaped convict nightmares. Aaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!

Last night we had our usual family Halloween bash. Fun costumes and lots and lots of good eats (and great leftovers for lunch today, my husband couldn't stand it and ate some for breakfast already). I had Whoppers and Halloween cookies for breakfast. The huge basket of leftover candy keeps taunting me. I think I'm going to keep myself busy by putting the Halloween decorations away in the huge three tubs for storage. I love Halloween, but holy crow, Thanksgiving will be here before I know it!
Hope you had a fun Halloween weekend too!
Here's a few fun pics:
My kids plus a friend trick or treating.

Our front porch (I missed out on pumpkin carving this year...but they sure turned out cute!)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Spooky Poetry Friday

Halloween is big in our house. I wanted to write a Halloween themed book for my children (and hopefully one day share it with other children), so I started writing Halloween parodies a few years ago. It turned into a collection, and it is titled I'm A Little Green Witch. I love parodies. I find myself singing different words to popular songs all the time, so it's only natural I wrote some down.
Here is one that did not make the cut for my manuscript. (I thought it might be too scary...what do you think?)


Do you know the bogeyman?
The bogeyman?
The bogeyman?
Do you know the bogeyman
Who lives under your bed?

Yes, I know the bogeyman.
The bogeyman.
The bogeyman.
Yes, I know the bogeyman.
Can I sleep with Mom instead?!
-by Kelly Polark, all rights reserved
Today's poetry roundup is at Bibliophile! Enjoy Halloween weekend!
Here are some past jack'o'lanterns from our home to get you into the Halloween spirit!


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Vampire Music

Did I mention that I liked vampires?
I am missing True Blood about now.
I am watching the Vampire Diaries. Good, but not True Blood.
(I discovered two things before I left for Florida: Face in Hole and how to schedule future blog posts! And FYI that was so not my body in the previous post! It was a model's body from Face in the Hole.com. I haven't worn a bikini since my third child did a number on my abs! Ha, ha!)

Today's tune for Tuesday is my most played song this month. I've been on a My Chemical Romance kick lately. Here is one of their earlier tunes. Perfect for vampire fans like me (and for the week before Halloween).
Listen to "Vampires Will Never Hurt You."

Monday, October 26, 2009

Greetings from Florida

I'm here!
In sunny Florida!
With my best friend and her family!
Tomorrow we are making the three day trek home.
Check out our driver!

Also, I recently received another acceptance to Highlights Puzzlemania! My word puzzle, Friend to the End, will be in a future issue! (very appropriate as I'm traveling with my friend to the end this week!)

Have a great week!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

5 Questions with Picture Book Author Amanda Noll

Need a fun monster themed book for Halloween? Want a refreshingly different monster under the bed story? Check out I Need My Monster by Amanda Noll ,published by Flashlight Press.
"A unique monster-under-the-bed story with the perfect balance of giggles and shivers, this picture book relies on the power of humor over fear, appeals to a child’s love for creatures both alarming and absurd, and glorifies the scope of a child’s imagination. One night, when Ethan checks under his bed for his monster, Gabe, he finds a note from him instead: "Gone fishing. Back in a week." Ethan knows that without Gabe’s familiar nightly scares he doesn't stand a chance of getting to sleep, so Ethan interviews potential substitutes to see if they've got the right equipment for the job." Read the rest of Barnes & Nobles synopsis and info here.

Here are my FIVE QUESTIONS with Amanda!

1. How did you get your idea for your book?
It came about because I wished my three year old daughter would stay in bed. It wasn’t my finest parenting moment.

2. Can you tell me a little about your road to publication?
I wrote (and rewrote) the story in mid 2005. By the end of 2005 I was submitting it to publishing houses. Flashlight Press was one of the first houses I sent it to. They held it in consideration and suggested revisions. By 2007 an offer was made. It was released in April of 2009.

3. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. What is your favorite Halloween costume?
I grew up in Australia, where we didn’t celebrate Halloween, so the dressing up was new to me. My ideal costume would be something from Dr. Who, although most people are unfamiliar with the science fiction series.

4. I am a huge music lover so I have to ask. What kind of music do you enjoy? Any favorite bands?
I love to write to music. Being a child of the 80’s and having spent my teen years in Australia, I tend to gravitate to music from: Ice House, Rick Astley, Men at Work, Crowded House, Duran Duran, and Wham. I also love ABBA.

5. Any advice to share for us writers?
Start writing. Write anything. Don’t make excuses about why you can’t write, don’t wait until the *perfect* time – it doesn’t exist.

Thank you so much, Amanda! Great answers (and I love Duran Duran, too)!

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Magic Show

Just an FYI to my blogger buds, I won't be as active in the blogworld the next few weeks. I am substitute teaching for first grade this week. The class is so sweet, and I'm having lots of fun with them so far! And next week my best friend and I are going to do an Oprah/Gayle trip for five days so I will be off the grid a bit. We are flying to her parents' house to Florida, staying two nights, and one full day, then we are driving back home! It will be a rare kids-free getaway. I'm a little nervous as it will be the longest I've been away from my kids, but it will be also good for me to get a break from the daily routine. I will have a long list of daily schedules and reminders for my husband (and probably grandmas) when I'm gone.
What does this have to do with my blog post title today? Nothing!
But I do have a short story in this month's issue of Stories for Children magazine titled "The Magic Show."
This short story was one of the first stories I wrote when I started writing for children about three or four years ago. I took an online class with a local author, and this was one of the assignments. I looked at the story again this year, and I realized how much I have learned from reading tips on blogs, Verla Kay's message board, and SCBWI meetings and conferences in the last few years. I tweaked and revised the crap out of it, and you can read it here! I love the illustration that Beverly Luria created to go along perfectly with the story.
Today's tune for Tuesday is a classic Police song.
"Everything She Does is Magic."

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tune for Tuesday/Scream 2009

Have you voted for the Scream 2009 Awards?? Do you love horror, science fiction or fantasy? Vote for your favorite movies, TV shows, songs, and more! Click here to vote! You can then watch the results on Spike TV on October 27.
I had a hard time choosing some categories as I’m a True Blood, Harry Potter and Twilight fan. I found I leaned toward Harry Potter votes though more than any other. Fun voting except they do have comic books represented which is cool, but not other books (which is not cool as many of the movies nominated come from awesome books!). I chose Harry Potter's Bellatrix for Best Villain, True Blood for Best TV Show and Robert Pattinson for Best Breakthrough Performance (I had to, it's Edward! Though I'm Team Jacob...but he wasn't in Twilight as much as he'll be in the next movie).
For Best Scream Song 2009 I voted for this song, today’s Tune for Tuesday.
It’s a remake of Bob Dylan’s “Desolation Row” by one of my fave bands, My Chemical Romance. One of my characters in my latest WIP, Rock 'n' Roll Princesses Wear Black, is named after the lead singer. This song is from the Watchmen soundtrack.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Three Cool Things

1. Congrats to PJ Hoover! Her sequel The Navel of the World was released today! My oldest son and I enjoyed The Emerald Tablet, and we are excited to read the newest book!

2. I won this cool illustration by MG Higgins on her blog (see pic). She will be having another veggie pun contest on November 1! This was titled "Peas March." Thanks, MG!

3. Check out this cool giveaway blogsite. They have different giveaways each week. This week they are giving away a shirt from my sister's VaVaVroom business! Follow directions and enter to win by October 14!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

S is for Story

Last night I had the pleasure of meeting author/teacher/facilitator/speaker Esther Hershenhorn at my local SCBWI chapter meeting. Esther is the author of a fabulous new book for children (and us writers) titled S is for Story: A Writer's Alphabet published by Sleeping Bear Press. This wonderful book is beautifully illustrated by Zachary Pullen. Isn't the cover fantastic?
Esther is the former Regional Director of Illinois SCBWI. Not only is she an author, but she teaches adult "Writing for Children" courses and facilitates Young Writers Workshops at schools.
Last night Esther detailed her journey from proposal to publication for us. Sleeping Bear Press alphabet books are all similar in format. They share the ABC's in rhyming couplets for little ones to enjoy, then there is a sidebar with further information about the topic (about 180 words worth of info). Esther also added a quote from an author for each subject as well. One of my favorite quotes in the book is by Linda Sue Park. Esther called her up to ask her for a riveting quote on plot for the letter P. She came up with a great one: "If everything goes smoothly, it's not a story!"
After she spoke, Esther signed books for us. Here she is signing one for my three kids.
Esther is such a lovely and lively woman. Her presentation was informative and entertaining, and I love her new book. Visit Esther on her website and blog! Her recent blog entries tell more about S is for Story!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Tales from Middle School

My oldest son started middle school this year. He is in fifth grade and due to large enrollments in each grade level, fifth grade is now housed with the 6th, 7th, and 8th graders in the middle school. I’m not thrilled about fifth graders being with eighth graders, but I do know he can handle it. My husband and I even had “The Talk” with him before school started. I was afraid of what he might hear on the bus, and I just wanted to make sure he had the correct information. “The Talk” was slightly embarrassing, but it actually went quite well. We went through a pamphlet we got from the Mayo Clinic about puberty and went from there. Except for a few inappropriate comments from my husband (which is expected), we had a very good discussion.
Due to being the youngest in the school now, J-Man was a little nervous the first few weeks of school, but he seems to be taking it in stride now.
Here are a few conversations from the first few weeks of middle school.
Day One:
J-Man: “The eighth graders are HUGE! They are so tall!”
(And this is coming from J-Man who is one of the youngest yet tallest in his grade.)
Week One:
J-Man: “Mom! An 8th grader told me he liked my shirt today!” See shirt in picture. And now this is the shirt most frequently worn by J-Man this school year.
Week Two:
J-Man: “Mom, I accidentally tripped an 8th grader going down the stairs today!”
Mom: “Oh, no! Did you say you were sorry? What did you do?”
J-Man: “No, I ran!”
Week Three:
J-Man: “Mom, an 8th grader sat on the bus with me today.”
Mom: “So, did he talk to you?”
J-Man: “Yeah!”
Mom: “What did he say?”
J-Man: “Well, the bus started moving so he had to sit down quickly, and he sat in my seat. He said, “ I’m just going to sit here until the bus stops again.”
Mom: “What did you say?”
J-Man: “Nothing. I scooted closer to the window!”

My sweet little fifth grader.

Today’s tune for Tuesday is by Disturbed. The band from my son’s now most prized t-shirt. Disturbed is a successful rock band from Chicago. Their most famous song is probably 2001’s “Down with the Sickness.” My husband and I saw them live at Ozzfest in 2006, they were really great live! Here is a video from their most recent album, Indestructible. My son just bought this CD, but there are a few inappropriate songs on it, so I had to import it on my computer then burn him a CD with 9/12 songs on it. “Inside the Fire” is a number one hit from this album and is today's tune. And I've only let J-Man watch the first half of this video, the end is a little gruesome...but perfect for the month of October.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Poetry Friday

As you may or may have not noticed in my last post, I'm quite the fangirl of Adam Rex. He's terribly witty, clever, and wow, what an amazing illustrator! And his blog is funny, too!
Since it is October and the time of year for monsters and things all spooky and crazy, I want to revisit two of Adam Rex's books: Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich and and 2008's Frankenstein Takes the Cake. My kids and I have read and reread these books and giggled, guffawed, snickered, busted a gut, and even cringed a few times. If you haven't read these yet, buy them, check them out at the library, or borrow my copies and read them! But really you should buy them, because you'll want to read them more than once. Really.
For Poetry Friday this week I have a link to one of Adam's poems, "New Glasses," from his book Frankenstein Takes the Cake. Check it out, straight from the man's blog HERE!

Today's poetry roundup is at Crossover!

Wait, there's more!
Here's silly video from Adam Rex about how he got Frankenstein to write the sequel to Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich. I hope he gets the torch out again, and gets Frank to write another! How about Frankenstein Becomes a Vegetarian? Frankenstein Starts a Band? Frankenstein Joins the Cast of Dancing With the Stars? Bella Leaves Edward for Frankenstein? Anything! Get to it, Frank!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Picture Book Tunes For Tuesday

I love books. (Duh.) So whenever there is a holiday or birthday, I always make sure books are part of the gift for my kids, cousins, and friends. My youngest, JD, turned five this month. Along with some Star Wars toys, I gave him two awesome picture books: A New Job For Dilly (written by Rena Jones, illustrated by Lisa Oakman) and Billy Twitters and his Blue Whale Problem (written by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Adam Rex). See the lil guy above with his new books!
JD is a preschooler, so I love the ABC concept of A New Job For Dilly. As Dilly looked for each job, JD would say "Awwww" if a job didn't work out. And when Dilly did find a job, JD cheered for him! If your child interacts with you during the book like that, you know he is interested and having fun.

JD did this as well with Billy Twitters. When Billy received a blue whale in the mail (from a Fed Up delivery man who suspiciously looks like illustrator Adam Rex), JD exclaimed, " A blue whale! In the mail?!!" He loved the pure ludicrousness (yes, this is a word, I just looked it up) that this little boy would actually have a blue whale and giggled throughout the story. He also loved the illustrations. Even on the inside of the book cover, he studied each illustration and asked me a million questions about them.
So do I recommend these books? Absofreakinglutely! And better yet, all these authors are bloggers. Click on the author's names in this paragraph to go to their blogs. Adam Rex shares his early work as a child (with hilarious commentary) and gives sneak peeks on his blog. If you haven't read his Frankenstein picture books, you are missing out. The True Meaning of Smekday was a fun read, too. Rex and Barnett also have a new book titled Guess Again! that I will be purchasing soon. Also, Adam, Mac, Jon Scieszka, and David Shannon and are in the middle of a book tour. See the tour info on their Guys With Books blog here!
Rena's next book is The Marshmallow Man (coming out in December). Rena also is a talented nature photographer, see her recent pics of Yellowstone here.
So I have two tunes for today.
Here's "Why Don't You Get a Job" by the Offspring. There are expletives in this song, so Dilly, Billy, nor other little ones should listen. But I like the Offspring. It seems like their singing is borderline yelling, yet it entertains me.

and indie rocker's Modest Mouse's "Whale Song" is my second tune for the day. Great bass on this one.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Poetry Friday

Today for Poetry Friday I have an original cinquain. The picture is of my puppy, Daisy, on the day we adopted her from the dog rescue. Since then she's grown longer and longer. Her mom was a cavalier spaniel/terrier mix and the father was unknown. Now that we've had her for six months, we are pretty sure the dad was a dachsund. She is SO darn long! And cute. When we were looking at breeds to adopt, my husband wanted a spaniel, but also said he did not want a dachsund. Well, we got ourselves a dachsund it turns out. And he (and the rest of the family) couldn't love her more!
Enjoy the cinquain and check out more poetry links at Susan Taylor Brown today.


A patch of light
Encompasses the cold
puppy, now bathed in nature's warmth.

-by Kelly Polark

Monday, September 21, 2009

And the winner is...

Thank you to all who entered my blogaversary contest! I loved reading the captions and comments about my doggies. My fave was “Paws off, he’s mine” by Sherrie! I put everyone’s names on strips of paper to have my son pull one, but my puppy Daisy grabbed one first! So I pulled the strip of paper out of her mouth, and it was Rena! Congrats! Rena, message me with your address, and your prize will be on its way!
Did anyone else watch the Emmy’s last night? See who won here as I won't list them. Who do I look like Giuliana Rancic?
Here’s my usual
Random Thoughts while watching the Emmy’s!
1. I didn’t know Doogie could sing!
2. Too long of a montage before each genre intro.
3. The eye props were a little goofy when showing the nominees of Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.
4. Kristen Chenowith is such a cute lil thing! She looks amazing in her silver dress. She won for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy and was so sincere and funny.
5. The two women from How I Met Your Mother (one of my fave shows) just had babies in the spring. They already look slim and trim!
6. JT is brunette now? And wears specs? Is he bringing average Joe back?
7. Rob Lowe still looks as handsome as when he was Sodapop in the Outsiders movie…but he’s not terribly funny as a presenter.
8. Okay, the mustache on Sarah Silverman who was nominated was funny.
9. Wow, big names for Lead Actress in a Mini Series! Jessica Lange won!
10. Sarah McLachlin has a beautiful voice. Some very famous names in the Memoriam section…and many I’ve never heard of.
11. Niiiiiiice. Two vampires: Stephen Moyer and David Boreanaz. Whoa! I didn’t know that Stephen Moyer was English! He does the Southern drawl so well in True Blood.
12. Yay! Nip/Tuck is back on next month! (okay, that was a commercial)
13. Sigourney Weaver looks exactly the same as she did twenty years ago. Wow, what a statuesque woman.
14. Woo hoo! True Blood won for Breakthrough Performance of the Year.

That’s my wrap up! I thought Neil Patrick Harris did a good job as host, he seemed a little nervous at first, but he is a funny, talented actor. My best dressed for the evening goes to two ladies in red: Mila Kunis and Blake Lively. They both looked stunning in red (which is supposed to be a hot color this fall season). Honorable mentions: Vanessa Williams always looks gorgeous too at the awards show, she was in a vibrant blue. Mariska Hargitay looked beautiful in a metallic dress, too. I actually had to look at internet photos of the dresses as during the night not everyone was showcased.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Blogoversary Contest!

Wow. It’s been one year since I published my first blog post. Can you believe it? Sometimes I can’t believe anyone comes by to see what the heck is up with me. So a sincere thank you.
My first post, Here I Am, was a quick introductory post. The first commenters on my first post were my husband, my sister, Rena Jones, Brenda Zirkle, and Jill Corcoran (thanks!). My second post, Paint It Black, was about black fingernail polish. My third post, Crazy B’s, was about a concert I had attended (what a surprise).
Through this first blogging year I have accumulated 155 posts, 11,287 hits, 50 followers, and most importantly several cyber friends I’ve connected through my blog and through reading their blogs.
So as a thank you to you all, I am having a lil contest. A caption contest. Look at the pic below, and give me your best caption (or comment).
What will you win? You will win a pack of recycled pencils and an Ed Hardy notepad to scribble a quick writing idea or a grocery list in. You can be cool and be green at the same time! I wish I could give away more, but it’s a recession, yo.
So give me your best caption (yes, those are my pups)! Contest closes on Sunday. I’ll announce a winner on Monday!
And thanks a million for reading my blog!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Saliva Tune for Tuesday

Today’s tune for Tuesday is by the rock group, Saliva. My mom and I saw them live in concert on Friday night. When my husband asked who we were going to see, I told him, “Saliva.” He busted out laughing. It is a funny name. Then I sang some of their hits like “Ladies and Gentlemen” and he was familiar with a few tunes. “Ladies and Gentlemen” seems to be played at so many sports events so that is one reason he knew that song.
Saliva is a platinum album selling rock band from Tennessee. Their fifth album Cinco Diablo came out in late 2008. The band was playing less than a half hour from me on Friday night, and I enjoy many of their songs, so my mom and I decided to go. Unfortunately, the concert started late (at 9) with two bands ahead of Saliva. My mom and I decided to sit and chat at the bar area for the two bands and went inside the concert area at the second bands’ last song. We secured a great spot on the left side in front of the stage even with our late entry. Saliva didn’t play until 11pm (which I’m in bed usually by then), but their energy and cool songs kept me very awake.
Here's my mom and me.
Saliva frontman, Josey Scott, is pretty reserved and stayed at the microphone, but he sounded really good. (Sidenote, Josey is married to an adult film star named Kendra something or other, is that a rock n roll cliche or what?). Back to the concert, luckily for us, we discovered that Saliva’s rhythm guitarist, Jonathan Montoya, was pure entertainment just by himself. Jonathan was like the court jester of rock and roll with his expressions, sometimes lewd gestures. He sang and danced throughout the whole show. He also poured beer all over himself, spit water into the audience (what did I expect with a band name like Saliva?). My mom and I had to turn and duck a few times so we weren’t sprayed too much. We giggled throughout the show because of Montoya’s over the top antics and outrageous personality.
Here’s a few short clips of him playing guitar, but it isn’t even his funniest moments, but still a little crazy.

Here’s also a short clip of “Ladies and Gentlemen” (embarrassingly enough, I believe you can hear me singing along, too).

Saliva played their hits (my favorite of the night was "Always") and some cool new tunes from their new album. A great concert. We even ducked out a door with the roadies to get to our car first, so we didn’t even have to fight traffic leaving. A fun night out with Mom.
Today's tune is my favorite Saliva song, "Rest in Pieces," which they did play at the concert in honor of 9/11. The video doesn't do the song justice, it's a little crass for a beautiful song. In fact I don't like the video (and it's not suitable for children), but I love the song! Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue/Sixx:A.M. cowrote this song, he has a cameo in the video.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bloody Good

Yes, yes, yes. I’ve been sucked into the vampire hype. First, I started watching HBO show, True Blood, last year. Wow. It’s campy, it’s funny, it’s suspenseful, it’s graphic. I love that show. The second season ends on Sunday, and I am so disappointed that I won’t be watching new episodes after Sunday (which I'll actually watch Monday because we are having people over for the Bears game Sunday night). The characters are such….characters! Sookie is strong and unique. Vampire Bill is such a protective Southerner. Eric the Nordic vampire somehow got even better looking this season. Jason is a riot. Tara has the most athletic body I have ever seen. Mariann was perfectly cast. I could go on and on. If you haven’t seen it, start with the first season DVD.
I actually just finished the first book this series is based on, Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris. (I’m holding the book in above picture. Do you like my Tru Blood t-shirt?) Great book, but I do wish I’d read it before the series. I always like reading the book first then the movie, this is no exception. I do think the series does the book justice and even elaborates well on other characters. But I will try and catch up on the books before the next season hits.
I read the Twilight series in February and March of this year. My sister just recently read through the four books in a week! I did enjoy the series. Eclipse was my favorite. And I’m Team Jacob. I’m a dog lover, and he’s just not as controlling as Edward. Not that Edward isn’t dreamy… The movie was good, not great, but good. I will go see New Moon in the theaters this fall!
Also, I will watch the new fall show, Vampire Diaries, to get my vamp fix. In fact I'm going to watch it after I post this blog. I know it won’t be as good as True Blood. But it will have to do.
Like my other vampire tshirt? If you can't read it from the pic, it says, "Only vampires can love you forever." Here I am holding not a vampire book, but Prada and Prejudice by Blueboarder Mandy Hubbard! I won it on Tabitha’s blog recently. Thank you, Tabitha! I have actually never read any Jane Austen. I am going to read Pride and Prejudice then this book. Just in case there are any fun parallels. I’m looking forward to it!
Are you into vampires too?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tune for Tuesday/75 Bands

Blog follower and fart poet, Murph, asked a good question last week that left me to ponder a while. How many concerts have I been to? This made me think, look back at some old pics to jog my memory, and look at ticket stubs (yes, I collect them, but I don’t have all of them…).
My first concert was REO Speedwagon/Survivor in 6th grade with my parents. Then came a wave of hair metal in the late 80’s. Then I went to a few concerts here and there, but I really picked up again after I became a stay at home mom. I love being at home, and family is my life. I'm a homebody, and really, usually I'm home. But sometimes I just need to get out and let loose and sing songs at the top of my lungs. So I started going to concerts regularly again. And again and again.
I really don’t know how many actual concerts I have been to, but here is a list of musicians/bands that I have seen live. Since most concerts feature 2-3 bands, I am guessing I’ve attended at least 50-60 concerts, and I’ve seen over 75 bands live.
Here’s a list.
30 Seconds to Mars, Aerosmith, Christina Aguilera, Avenged Sevenfold (2), Bad Company, Pat Benatar (2), Black Eyed Peas, Blondie (2), Bon Jovi, Brides of Destruction, Buckcherry (4), Mary Chapin Carpenter, Chevelle (2), Chicago, The Connells, Creed, Sheryl Crowe, Def Leppard, Disturbed, The Donnas, Dovetail Joint, Duran Duran (4), Eve 6, Foo Fighters (2), Great White (2), Guns n Roses, Hoobastank, INXS, Billy Joel, Elton John, Juke Kartel, The Killers, Kiss, LA Guns, Bret Michaels Band, The Monkees, Motley Crue (4), Vince Neil solo (4), Nelson, Our Lady Peace, Ozzy Osbourne, Panic Channel, Papa Roach (2), Poison (2), Prince, Queensryche (2), REO Speedwagon (2), Rick Springfield, Rockstar Supernova, Saving Abel, Scorpions, Seven Mary Three, Shinedown, Silvertide, Sixx AM, Skid Row (2), Slaughter (3), Smashing Pumpkins, Billy Squier, Styx (3), Sum 41, Survivor (2), System of a Down, Tantric (2), Third Eye Blind (2), Three Days Grace, Justin Timberlake, Trapt, The Tubes, Van Halen (2), Velvet Revolver, Warrant, Weezer, Whitesnake (3), Winger (3), Weird Al Yankovic

The band I’ve seen the most is Motley Crue/Vince Neil (Vince Neil sings Crue songs anyway when he’s solo). Bands I want to see live and haven’t yet are My Chemical Romance and Incubus. U2 would be awesome live, too. I’ll add Saliva to my list this weekend, too!
Today’s tune for Tuesday is from a band on my list that I haven’t played on my blog yet. Here’s another hair metal cutie. Listen to Slaughter’s 1990 hit “Fly to the Angels.” Good tune, except for the lyric, “And flowers bloom in your name.” That’s just plain goofy. Oh, and that’s lead singer, Mark Slaughter, me and my hubby’s cousins a few years ago in the top left photo.
Grab your hairspray and crank it!
Slaughter - Fly To The Angels- Watch more Videos at Vodpod.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Whateva Pic

1. Ray Veen of Big Plain V posted a meme to post ten pictures of whatever from your hard drive. Look at his link to find the rules. I'm not going to post them, because I am not really following them closely. (I'm such a rebel!)
My photos are 1000 to 1 family. Then I have some of rockstars. And a few cool scenery shots I guess. I haven't really saved many photos for book research yet, but for my blog I've saved musician photos and some logos. As I perused my photo files and I came across this one that I saved years ago. I think it is really cool. So I am going to post it for my Whateva photo. But I'm going to break the rules and talk about it.
This is an illustration from Virgin Digital that depicts 75 different band names. For example, see the roses and guns in a vase? That would be for the band, Guns N Roses. The green square on the calendar? Green Day. And so on. I have never found all 75, I believe my number was 50 something. But I thought it would be fun to share with you all. What band name (s) did you find?
Here is bigger picture of it with a list of the answers. But seriously, try to find as many as you can before looking! I haven't even checked the answers, because I want to keep looking!

2. Kim Kasch nominated me for the Kreativ Blogger award!! Thank you, my dear Kim! I appreciate the pat on the back! And since I am breaking rules today, I am going to give you a link to my seven things here!

3. I received good news this week. Ladybug magazine accepted a poem of mine to be published in a future issue! I was seriously close to tears when I read the email (I know, I'm a sap!), but I had been submitting them for a few years with no luck. I feel so honored to be able to say my poetry has been (well, will be) published with the Carus group.