Friday, November 30, 2012

Alopecia and Internal Affairs

#1: Alopecia - Optimus Style

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about our dear first-born, Optimus. His hair was falling out for no reason that we could see.

We took him to the vet. And in this post, I outlined all of the choices that she gave us regarding how to deal with his balding issue. We decided to have the blood panel done to see if there was anything abnormal going on with his hormones or enzymes and make sure there was nothing systemic going on. Well she called us the following week and all was well with his blood work.

Fortunately, his hair is growing back in. Unfortunately, it is continuing to thin in other areas. The whole right side of his body looks like a cheetah. He's mostly red and then where it is thinning, the fur is very blonde. So he's kinda polka dotted looking on his side. Poor baby.

Our policy for dealing with it is, if it doesn't bother him, it doesn't bother us. The highs here are in the low 70s. You read that right. He isn't used to that kind of heat year round, so for now we are assuming that his beastly self isn't used to the weather. He's adjusting. Like us. But he's eating and pooping fine. He's acting like his normal self so we are letting it go for now.

#2: My Speeding Ticket

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about the asshole cop that pulled me over and gave me a ticket. He wasn't an asshole for pulling me over, but for the unprofessional way in which he conducted himself when he pulled me over. You can read more about that with direct quotes here.

I did file an online complaint through their official site on monday afternoon. I received a phone call regarding my complaint from the internal affairs office on wednesday, 2 days later. The officer took a statement from me over the phone and asked me a lot of questions regarding what happened when.

He also asked me what I would like to see happen to rectify the situation and laid out all of my options.

1. He could inform the officers boss and make sure he is not a repeat offender or have any other complaints of this nature against him.

2. I could file an official complaint and a file on the officer would be opened. This would entail me going down to the station for a tape recorded session and there could be court charges filed against him if it was shown that he violated the code of conduct.

I told him that what I REALLY wanted was for the officer to apologize to me. I told him that even though I knew it was unreasonable, I wanted an apology and an acknowledgement that the officer knew his behavior was wrong. I expected the investigator to be like, "Ma'am that is never going to happen." But instead, he was like, "Okay, well let me see when your court date is. It should be on your ticket that you were issued. Let me pull it up."

Troy had noticed it on monday, but the officer had put TROY'S name under the driver line (the car is insured and registered in Troy's name) and put the vehicle vin number under the license number AS WELL AS putting the wrong car color. The officer said that he would have to look into that and get back to me regarding the validity of the ticket, considering it was improperly filled out.

However, I was encouraged by the fact that the officer was like, "Oh let me see when your court date is" when I told him I wanted an apology. I felt like he ACKNOWLEDGED that I had been mistreated and was deserving of an apology after I told him my story. And I was glad that it seemed like he believed me. I felt SO much better just having someone who would be considered a co-worker of that jerk make it seem like he also thought I was owed an apology.

I told him that I wanted to go with option 1. I just wanted this officer's supervisor to know that he had acted unprofessionally. I am not sure if he was having a bad day or what. I would hope that this is an isolated incident, but if not, his supervisor would be made aware and could reprimand him in whichever way he deemed appropriate.

We hung up with him saying that he would get back to me regarding the ticket. We'll see. I have the number of a law group that one of my co-workers recommended. I haven't heard back from the internal affairs officer and it's been about 2 weeks. So I'm thinking I'll give the law office a call and figure out what I'm supposed to do now. Because I am certainly not going to just PAY the penalty, when it appears the points and fines would go towards Troy's license. So I guess I owe you guys another update about this. Especially if I wind up in court face to face with this guy...

Monday, November 26, 2012

Our Fall Line Up

Shows on our fall line up include (but are not limited to):


- Hoarders - This show just makes me feel good about my life. How do people do this to themselves? It's crazy. There are the nasty episodes where people save all their poop and pee in jars. It's gross. BUT THEN there are people who collect BOOKS. Like tens of thousands of books. It's scary because if my mom didn't reign in my stepdad, I totally feel like this could be him. I just love seeing what people consider their "treasures." It's fascinating.

- Intervention - Ditto for this show. These people are a hot mess. I feel like every ending is a surprise twist. Not as intense as "The 6th Sense." But just enough to keep me coming back for more. I. Can't. Look. Away. 18 year old alcoholic? Check! 70 year old meth addict? Check! 30 year old addicted to bath salts? Check! It really shows that no age, race, or background is off limits. It makes me scared that I could really mess up my kids though...definitely something to think about.


- Parenthood - I literally cannot tell you how good this show is. If it EVER gets cancelled I will cry. Loudly and profusely. Outside the studio. While holding protest signs. Is that a threat? No. It's a promise. You heard it here first. If Congress is going to stop funding PBS, it can start funding a good family show like Parenthood. It is far too wholesome, real, and educational (about social situations) to be cancelled.

If you are not watching this show, you need to watch it. Immediately. It will SHOCK you how well this show is acted. Especially for the ages of some of the children. Troy thinks that one of the kids HAS to actually have autism because there is NO way he can be that awesome of an actor. He deserves an Emmy.

I can't say enough good things. No topic is off limits. PTSD. Cancer. Autism. Blended families. Biracial marriage. Adoption. Teen sex. Drug use. Divorce. Empty nest syndrome. It's just awesome. Watch it. This is the ONE show that Troy and I sit and watch without distractions every single week. It will really show that you have NO idea what someone is going through and to try and be patient and understanding with every single person you will ever meet.

- New Girl - This is quirky, HILARIOUS humor. How this girl gets into these situations, I will never know. Also how the writers make a 30 minute show out of some of these topics is genius. The 1 liners are quick, fast, and witty. This is SMART humor and I've never watched another show like it. I wish I knew these people in real life. They are so relatable. It's like the way to want to act, but don't have the guts to act. I was introduced to this show by my brother, Tyler, and his wife, Meridith. I watched the first show with them and haven't missed an episode since.

PS. Something about Jess's character reminds me SO much of Meridith and something about Schmidt reminds me of Tyler. I think it's Tyler's blatant disregard for what other people think about his quirks. Let your freak flag fly, bro.


- Survivor - I just can't stop. It's good every season.


- Grey's Anatomy - Part of me is so ready to quit this show. And then they'll have a GREAT episode. And it reels me back in. I hear it's getting cancelled soon. I think I'll be ready. Not like Parenthood (I'll never be ready).

- Glee - They are currently doing this thing where they introduce new characters because others are graduating and moving on with their "post Glee Club" life. Which I totally support. I hate shows where you're like, "Um, this has been on for 6 years and you can't pull off 16 anymore, buddy." And they're doing a great job of integrating them into the show. So well done Ryan Murphy. Well done. The cover they did of "Some Nights" last week was AMAZEBALLS.

- Big Bang Theory - I LOVE THIS SHOW. Troy and I didn't get into it until about 6 months ago. We were living in TLF in New Mexico and didn't really have anything else to do except for watch re-runs of shows on TBS. And we started watching Big Bang re-runs religiously. And on Netflix. It is SO funny. I love it. The writing is genius. Literally. I makes nerds cool. And physics cool. And comic books. And action figures. It's great. I need tissues for this show too. To wipe away the tears of laughter.


- Once Upon a Time - I am starting to have a hard time following this. It's getting complicated and introducing new characters right now should not be allowed. Now, we watched "Lost" so I am accustomed with how the writers like to do things, but I'm getting a little "Lost." I'm pun-ny... If anyone has a suggestion (other than keeping a diary or joining a forum) for how to keep up with all the story lines on this show right now, that would be awesome. I love this show when I can follow it, but it's haaaaaaaard.

What is everyone else watching? Make no mistake, we have a DVR. We are almost ALWAYS over a week behind. Last night we watched Parenthood and Glee from Thanksgiving week, so we were doing okay keeping caught up. Any good recommendations?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Avery and the Barnyard!!

Avery is the best. She is such a joy and blessing in our lives everyday. She makes us laugh constantly. Avery has got MOST of the animals noises down. She is walking around the house cockadoodledoing (more like a yodel) and I just want to squeeze her it's so cute. Here are the animals she's got down:

- Cow (moo)
- Sheep (baa)
- Monkey (aaaaaaaaah)
- Horse (nay)
- Rooster (doodleloodleloo)
- Cat (mow)
- Dog (woooof)
- Duck (wey wey)
- Lion (raaaaaaaw)

That's a terrible explanation. So without further ado, Avery making animal noises:

Totally adorable, right?

Monday, November 19, 2012

DIY Play Kitchen Part 1: Planning

I started trolling Pinterest over a year ago for ideas for a play kitchen. Here are some of my favorites (from here, here, and here):

This one is from vintagesongbird:

This one is from giggleberrycreations:

And this one is from YoungHouseLove. If you haven't picked up their book yet, you are MISSING OUT! It's awesome.

I hit up Craigslist looking for something to use as a base. I didn't have luck. Why does everyone think their stuff is worth SO much. It's used, people! Price fairly! I'm not paying 50 bucks for a tiny overhead cabinet that I can buy new for less! I'm not buying a LAMINATE entertainment center that's rocking for over 100 bucks. Get real.

I decided to go to the Habitat for Humanity Restore and picked up this stuff:

An old kitchen cabinet for 39$

An old sink for 25$. I could have gotten a mixing bowl for a sink and a fake faucet, but I really wanted a real one because it is a fine motor manipulative that really turns and works. So the price was higher for the sink rather than individual pieces, but it was worth it for me. And less work. All we'll have to do is cut one hole and caulk around the sink rather than cut a hole for a bowl and glue it and find/paint/glue a faucet and knobs that wouldn't turn.

A little towel holder for 3$ NEW IN THE BOX! 2 drawer pulls for 1.50 each. 1 for the oven door and 1 for the cabinet.

Oven knobs off of a broken oven FREE!! There was a sign on the oven that said it was broken. I asked how long it had been there (over 4 months) and if I could have the knobs...WIN!

As I stated above, I have been planning to do this for over a year and finally (with Christmas breathing down my neck) I jumped the gun. In my planning, I had picked up a couple things from IKEA last fall. That I miraculously did not lose in our moves.

A basket of veggies

A fish tray

I asked my cousin Laura to swing by IKEA in San Diego and pick up a few things for me before they come for Thanksgiving:

Pots and pans

A baking set

Breakfast food


I'm planning on covering the hole in the backing with some art. I don't know if I will make the spot look like a window and put an outdoor scene in a frame or just make it abstract art. I'm still planning.

Troy said that after all the projects I have tackled in the past few months, I'm on hold until after my sister's wedding in April. I may actually die before then. Or paint and repurpose stuff in our house that he already likes...we'll see how he takes that...MUAHAHAHAHAHA (that's my evil laugh).

Now that you've seen the plan, I need some help. If you live in the Vegas area:

1. I need to borrow a jig-saw. Do you have one that we can borrow for the afternoon?

2. Now that Troy has given me the project ultimatum until April, do you need help with something? I VOLUNTEER AS TRIBUTE!!! I may actually die between Christmas and April 14th. Contact me via email or text message or facebook message if you need someone with elbow grease. I'm your girl :)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

MAP Nightstands! Seriously My Favorite Project to Date!

I cannot say it enough. I LOVE CRAIGSLIST! There is evidence of my love affair with Craigslist (here, here, and here). Up next on the "decorate the house on the cheap" is our bedroom. We have all the same furniture in our room that we got when we were married. And by "got" I mean given. Our bed we got from neighbors the day we moved into our house. I think they had pity on us. We literally had no furniture. Our nightstands were in Troy's bedroom when he was growing up. My dresser is from my childhood bedroom. Troy's dresser was given to us by one of my friends parents. NOTHING matches. Until now :) I saw the idea for using modge podge in the Young House Love book. But I didn't want to use wallpaper. I got the map idea from here and here. Gotta love execution of projects on Pinterest.

Have a look at our "new nightstands" in all their glory!

Our master bedroom was definitely designed for a king sized bed. Now I know that there are pros and cons to king sized beds. Everyone we know has one LOVES it. "Once you get a king bed you'll never go back." We know, we know. HOWEVER, I don't want to sleep in a different bed than Troy. Which is what I feel like a king sized bed would feel like. AND with Troy being in the military, you never know what your housing situation will be. You could have switchback stairs (folding your king mattress like a taco), or a tiny bedroom in Japan (where you can't use nightstands), or a tiny townhouse in Northern Virginia (where all the colonial style bedrooms are TEENY). So a queen is just a smarter move for us right now. Ask me again in a few years when Troy and I have been married for ten years. I kid, honey. Not really.

So this was our bedroom situation. The nightstands were barely large enough for a lamp and a book with the alarm clock on top. TEENY. And because the room was designed for a big bed, the furniture looks tiny on that big wall. Not having art is not helping proportions either. But I hit Craigslist hard for nightstands.

They're just too small...

Sorry I didn't get a full "before pic." The one on the left hasn't had anything done to it, but the one on the right I had already started on with the sander. I love the lines and the hardware. :) They're awesome.

I love love love the parkay top. You can see that there were some water stains and overall wearing down. After some work, it re-stained awesome!

Here is one fully sanded. Mistake #1 : I got a little too aggressive with the sander around the edge. It didn't take the stain that well...BUT that's okay. It gives it a little more texture.

I stained them with Minawax Dark Walnut and wiped them down really well. I didn't want the color as dark as the table top from the kitchen. After they dried, I put on a coat of polyacrylic clear gloss. I bought 2 giant fold out maps off Amazon. Troy was born in Texas and I was born in South Carolina, so that's what I went with. I used Modge-Podge to apply the maps to the front of the drawers. Troy was like "Really? That's weird." You wait and see who gets the last laugh (it's me, by the way).

I love how you can see where the maps would have connected. The highways are a little offset, but overall, I'm super happy with them.

Here is the after shot. See how the wall doesn't look so huge? No more Alice in Wonderland furniture!! YAY!

And here it is at night with some mood lighting? Oooh la la! And now we both have 3 drawers instead of one and tons of space to avoid stacking everything up. It was like an avalanche waiting to happen on Avery's head. And direct quote from Troy, "Ok now that I see them up here, they're pretty awesome." Win.

If I was going to do this project over again, I would have tea-stained the maps. The white backdrop of the map is a little stark white with the cream and gold tones in the bedding. But overall, 9/10. And still winning for my favorite project in the house. So far...

I've got a SWEEEEEEET project coming up. I'll give you a hint. It starts with play and ends with kitchen. For Avery. An EPIC trip to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore was in order. I CANNOT WAIT!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Pop of Color/My Devil Furniture

This is the story of how our breakfast nook table went from this:

To this:

The color is a little orange in the picture because of the time of day that I took the photo. The sunlight streams into the kitchen in the morning and it's super bright. So sorry for that :(

I bought this table on Craigslist for $100 while we were still in San Antonio. It's a typical table that can be found at any big box store. I thought it would be great in our kitchen, knowing that I was already planning to refinish the wood to a darker stain.

After looking at it in our kitchen for 2 and a half months, I decided that the white was not working. At all. The tile floor is more of a tan and the backsplash is all different shades of cream, brown, and tan:

Troy knew that I was staining the table a dark color, but when I told him that I was planning to paint the white to a color, he was like, "NO! The white is going to look so clean and modern when you stain the top." And I was like, "but there is literally NO white in the kitchen and the table looks sterile. And SO white. It's a little jarring."

He wanted me to paint it cream. But I thought that would look dirty. And I always do what I want around the house. It's only fair. I move 4 places in 1 year for his job = getting extra votes for home decor. So I picked red. Spray paint. Less work. WIN.

Here is a side by side comparison. I feel like this picture is also the most true to color.

I first used a palm sander to roughen up all the wood on the table top and seats of the chairs. It took about 45 minutes to do all 5 surfaces. Then I used a paintbrush to stain all the wood with Minwax Dark Walnut ($7 and I only used about a 1/5th of the can). I did 2 coats and made sure to ALWAYS brush the same direction as the wood grain. This took me about 1.5 hours. I was able to do all that during Avery's afternoon nap.

I let that sit outside for 2 days. Then I went out and put a coat of clear finish on top with a paintbrush. That sat for 2 days. I covered the newly stained wooden chairs and table top with a clear drop cloth and used blue painters tape protect the wood. I drug the furniture into the unfinished part of the yard on cardboard and drop cloths and went to town.

I used a spray paint and primer in 1 because I am lazy. I didn't want to spray with primer and then with paint. I could have used a paint and a brush but (again) I am lazy.

I tried to do 3 thin and even coats with the spray paint on all surfaces. I kept finding spots that would peek through white when I thought I was done. For all 5 pieces, I went through 4 cans of spray paint. I'm really happy with the color.

Now for the title of the post. Troy is calling it my "Devil Furniture."

1. Because it is red.
2. Because he is trying to get back at me because I didn't keep it white. And he knows I was right. The red is better. And he can never just say that I was right. Which I was. I can admit when I was wrong. But not this time. Because I was right.

I got another picture when the color was a little better:

What do you think? Too much? I love my "devil furniture." Red as a great color. And it's keeping our main living area from being too "blah." It makes my "big box" furniture look more custom and special.

Monday, November 12, 2012

So. I Got My First Speeding Ticket. And the Police Officer COULD NOT HAVE BEEN MORE RUDE.

This morning, I woke up and took a shower. And got ready for work. And got Avery out of bed to go to Carolyn's house (our nanny). I dropped Avery off and got on 215 going east for 2 miles and then merged to get onto 95 going south.

I look in my review mirror and see a motorcycle cop while I am on the 1/2 mile ramp from the beltway to merge on the highway and going about 60 mph. I think nothing of it because I wasn't speeding or breaking the law. I am getting ready to move onto 95 south and I see his motorcycle lights flash for about 5 seconds and I am confused. I think that he is signaling me to get out of the way so that he can get by faster. So I drive a bit to the right side of the road to let him by (the exit ramp is long and raised and only 1 lane) but he keeps on my bumper and so I merge off the road.

I was FREAKIN SCARED. I have NEVER been pulled over. EVER. No warnings, no traffic violations, no nothing. Perfect driving record. Until today. SO I am shaking. He takes his sweet time and gets off the bike and walks up to my side of the car and while I get my license and registration. This is what I am thinking:

Oh God. License and registration. That's what the cops say in movies. I have both. Go me. And I found them. Crap. I'm going to be so late for work. I don't have anyone's phone numbers. How am I going to call them? If I reach for my phone, will he think I have a gun and shoot me? Was I speeding? Nope. Oh crap, I wonder if my plates are expired. Hmmm (looking at registration), nope I'm good. Maybe my taillight is out. Oh no. I hope he takes his helmet and sunglasses off. He looks scary. I would hate to drive a motorcycle when it's this cold outside. Yuck. Oh CRAP here he comes. Maybe if I leave my Christian radio on he'll have pity. Oh God. Stop shaking. Don't cry. DON'T be that girl who cries. Don't do it.

He walks up to my window and I roll it down. He does not remove his helmet, sunglasses or move his little microphone from in front of his mouth. So I can see NO identifying features of his face.

Cop: (while yelling because we were on the highway and he didn't take off his helmet to hear me) License, registration, and proof of insurance.

I hand it to him and wait a beat while he looks at my license.

Me: Is there a problem?

Cop: (very rudely) Oh. So you think I'd give you a ticket without telling you what your traffic citation is?

Me: What? No. I just don't know what's wrong.

Cop: Are you telling me that you don't know what your speed was back there?

Me: I was going 65.

Cop: Right. I clocked you going 66.

Me: Okkkkaaaaaayyyyy?? (still waiting for an explanation)

Cop: The speed changes from 65 to 45 within a mile or so as you approach 95 because lights start on the north side of 215.

Me: Oh ok, I didn't realize that. I was on the highway for less than 2 miles.

Cop: (dripping with sarcasm) Did you pass your test for your drivers license?

Um Hello. The sarcasm AND question is just mean. Of course I passed the test. Would I be driving if I hadn't? You are in the suburbs of Las Vegas. This is not the strip at midnight. I am not drunk. Or a prostitute. Don't treat me like that. I am wearing scrubs and on my way to work with a car seat in the back. Hello. Sarcasm not needed. Suburban mom right here.

Me: Excuse me?

Cop: Why did it take so long for you to pull over?

Me: Your lights weren't flashing when I saw you. There are cops on the highways all the time. And I didn't feel safe pulling off to the side on a 1 lane, raised highway, entrance ramp where people are getting ready to merge at 70 mph.

Cop: (still dripping sarcastic and yelling over the noise) Well if you had passed your test, you'd know that you are supposed to pull over when you see an officer behind you.

I OBJECT!! But I didn't say that. I know that you are allowed to pull off at ANY spot where you feel comfortable. Which I definitely didn't. As it was, I pulled over in a construction zone between cones. Just sayin'. I could have called the police department to confirm that a real police officer was following me if I wanted. All within my rights okay?

Me: awkward silence while thinking ^this^ over.

Cop: (While looking at my license because it is from Delaware) Are you visiting Las Vegas or are you a local?

Me: I'm a local, we just moved here in mid August.

Cop: And you're on your way to work?

Me: Yes.

Cop: I need your local address. What is it?

Me: (Gives him address)

Cop: (yelling) I need you to speak up!!

Me: (shouts address)

Cop: (still yelling) LOUDER!

Me: (shouts address)

Cop: (yelling louder) LOUDER THAN THAT!

Me: (takes registration from Cop and writes address on it)

He goes back to his motorcycle to write up my ticket. And I proceed to cry. He was so mean, sarcastic, and inappropriate. I literally couldn't believe how rude he was. And my only reaction was to cry. Not sobbing. Just a tear every once in a while.

So he comes back with my ticket(s) and hands me my speeding ticket. So then he says:

Cop: Here's your ticket. Sign here. I reduced the speed to just say that you were 5 over. (only good thing he did or it was a reckless driving...ew)

Me: Thanks. What do I do now? Do I pay, do I call court, do I call my insurance? I've never done this.

Cop: Directions on the back. And I have to write you an additional ticket.

Me: What? Why?

Cop: You told me that you moved here in mid August. Thats two and half months ago.

Me: Okkkaaaaaayyyy

Cop: It's Nevada state law that you change your license, registration and insurance within 30 days of taking residence. (tries to hand me ticket)

Me: (puts hands up and pulls them away from the ticket) WHOA WAIT. My husband is active duty military and our insurance and registration is in his name. We don't have to change that stuff because he is active duty.

Happy Veterans Day you JERK! Kidding. I didn't say that.

Cop: (awkward pause with ugly look on his face because I was right and he wasn't expecting that response) Oh......well I didn't know that.

Me: (voice shaking and tear coming down face) You've been very rude, sarcastic and unprofessional (I may have said inappropriate). Be nice. I've never done this before and don't know what to expect.

Cop: Well, act like an adult and suck it up. It's time to put on your big girl pants. (I am shocked into silence) Have a good day.

And he turns around and walks back to his bike.

Seriously. If I was speeding, that's fine. I get a ticket. But really? No need to be rude. He was on a serious power trip.

Here's the kicker. I got back to Carolyn's and told her and her husband (who is from Las Vegas) what happened. Talon said I should file a complaint for his behavior and that his name and badge number should be on the ticket. I pull the ticket out and hand it to him and he's like "NO. WAY. I have to call my sister."

He calls his sister and sure enough, the cop is her ex-fiance. I tell her the whole story and she's like, "I CAN'T BELIEVE THAT!! I KNEW HE WAS A JERK. I'm so glad I broke it off with him."

Small world. I did file a complaint. Because really? SO rude.

Advice anyone? Pay the ticket? Contest? Anyone else have a horrid police interaction? Make me laugh please. I still haven't talked to Troy. Maybe he'll take pity on me because he was so mean.

Anyway, here's the picture. Opinions?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

AIRPLANE! And Some of the Sweetest Daddy/Baby Shots I Ever Did See...

So our house is right in the flight pattern for the North Las Vegas Airport. I think we must be right under the pattern for the runway to land. Most of the planes are pretty small...don't ask me what kind or how big because I don't know. I should because I am an Air Force spouse, but here's the thing....I can't tell the difference between a F-16 and an F-15. BUT I can tell the difference between a T-38 and a C-5. I kid...I can do better than that. Most of the time. If I have a 50/50 guess.

But for real. The planes landing at the airport look like tourist planes...maybe somewhere between 4 to 8 people could sit in them. And some helicopters too. But to Avery EVERYTHING is an airplane. And it doesn't matter where we are in the house, if she can hear it, she's pointing to the sky and making a plane noise with her mouth.

As a side note, these are some of my absolute FAVORITE pictures of Troy and Avery together. FAVORITE!! They are looking up at the airplanes. It was a particularly busy evening over there. It is important to note that these were taken BEFORE daylight savings. It is PITCH BLACK here at 5:15 now. It is awful.

How cute are they!?!? I love her chubby baby fingers pointing up at the plane.

And this is her making her "OOOOOOOH" face when the next plane came over! She wants to make she we know it's there. I love her.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I Walked Out in the Garage and the Bumper was HANGING TOTALLY OFF THE CAR. And Troy was Getting Directions Off YouTube.

Troy and I are the kind of people that pay for service. If something will take too long or be a big pain in the butt, we'll pay a lot to get out of doing it ourselves.

After Avery went to bed, Troy decided to do some DIY car work. Which he had never done before. I was a little nervous. If you read our last DIY story, you know how that went. He needed to change the lightbulbs in one of the headlights that were out. He has always paid for repairs for his car. It's a Volkswagon Jetta, and he's always been like, "it's a foreign car so it has to go to a dealer!" Like a Jiffy Lube won't know how to change the oil in a german car. Seriously.

So when he announced that he was going to AutoZone to get lightbulbs, I thought THEY were changing them. Nope.

He came home and brought his computer out in the garage.

Natalie (with a tremor in her voice, knowing that Troy has to drive it to work in 2 hours): Uhhhhhhh, what are you doing?

Troy (very calmly and confidently): Watching a "how to" video for this.

Natalie: Uhhhhhhh, what are you doing?

He ignored me. I avoided going out there for about an hour. And then I walked out and saw this:


Troy: I'm aware. I had to take it off to get access to the headlights. I've been here the whole time. I know it's off.

Natalie (voice squeaking): Are you seriously watching youtube?

Troy: Yep.


Troy: Hey look. There's a dead bird in the bumper where I took it off.

Natalie: WHAT!! GROSS! Get rid of it! (long pause) OK FINE! Let me see.

I took a picture of the dead bird inside the bumper, but I won't do that to you. Some of you may be eating breakfast. Yuck.

You saw it here first folks. Troy is wearing a head light. Like, for when you go hiking at night.

But for real. He figured it out calmly. Using a youtube video. I was seriously proud. He probably saved us 2 hours of paying for car labor at a shop. And thank God for dawn soap. It's the only thing that gets car grease off of skin.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dragging Troy to A Drag Show

So my mom came to visit a few weeks ago. She got here at 10pm on wednesday and then it was off to the races. We went to bed wednesday night and then got up thursday morning and drove to San Diego to visit Laura and her mom Kim (who is my mom's first cousin). You can read about my last visit here.

This is a picture of my mom with Laura (the brown hair) and me when Mom and Kim were about our age.

Isn't that cute??

Anyway... We were in San Diego doing girl stuff from Thursday to Saturday (when we drove back to Vegas). Then on Sunday we went to church and went to Costco. My mom's cousin came over with his daughter on Sunday night. Then on Monday, Troy and I both worked and Mom stayed home to have Grandma time with Avery. Tuesday morning, we were like, "OH GOD. You're leaving tomorrow and we haven't done ANYTHING Vegas-y." That's a word.

So I started looking online for a show that we could go to on a Tuesday night. Unfortunately, a lot of shows have their "off night" on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. There weren't a lot of choices, but I FINALLY found a "Vegas-y" one called "Las Vegas Divas." And you guessed it!! Based on the title of this post, it was a drag show.

It was at the Imperial Palace on the strip. I was able to get a sitter for Avery last minute (YAY!) and we headed downtown. We parked at the Imperial Palace and walked through the casino and grabbed some drinks at Fat Tuesdays. We have more cups to add to our collection. We keep cups from bars in our car so that when we go downtown we don't have to pay the "inital cup fee" again. Refills on drinks are like half the price. Anyway, we got some drinks and went out to watch the fountain show at the Bellagio, which was really cool. I'd seen it in lots of movies, but it's better live.

We walked back to the Imperial Palace. The hotel was kind of a shit hole. Let's be honest. Especially since we walked through Caesar's Palace and the Bellagio. The best part about the Imperial Palace was that all of the dealers were dressed up like a character. There was Michael Jackson and Dolly Parton and some others. That was fun.

We got refills on our drinks for Mom and Troy (I got voted the DD. Of. Course.) and snuck them into the show. We were LITERALLY in the front row. Which was awesome, because Mom and Troy were just drunk enough to let everyone around us hear that they were excited about being so close so they could check out "how well the guys hide their junk." Face-palm.

The show started and Joan Rivers was the host. She looked awesome. The real Joan Rivers already looks like a drag queen so it was pretty much perfect.

Each person played 2 personas. I didn't get pictures of all the people, but here are a few examples:

Whitney Houston and Diana Ross where played by the same guy. Girl? I don't know what's politically correct here...

This is Celine Dion and Cher. How awesome is Cher?? The answer is: THE MOST AWESOME!

And then there's Lady Gaga and Britney. He/she was wearing jeweled PANTIES for each persona. And let's talk about this. We were sitting in the front row. And my mom is SLAMMED. And Troy is SLAMMED. And I was sitting between them. So to talk to each other, they are "whispering." Which has to be done over my lap. So they are doing like the stage whisper.

Troy: Ok, where's the penis?

Mom: That is an excellent tuck job.

Troy: I see no evidence of man there.

Mom: He's hot.

Natalie: Seriously, they can hear us.

But for real. The guy/girl who played Lady Gaga and Britney was AMAZING! Like better than real Britney. Had a better body than 95% of the girls I know. As a dude. For shame Natalie, for shame. GO TO THE GYM!

I got a picture with Britney after the show. I googled him just now and found out he is super famous. He was on "The X-Factor" as a Britney impersonator. His name is Derrick Barry. Google him.

Troy was relieved after he saw them all up close. He was like, "um, they're hot from far away." And then after seeing them up close with all their makeup and wig glory, he was like, "um, not so much hot from close up."

But for real. The thing I was most upset about was that there was NO live singing. I know that they are dudes and probably can't hit those notes. Their job is to IMITATE those divas in looks, swag and dancing, but I was still disappointed they they ALL were lip-syncing.

The other ladies that were there were Beyonce/Tina Turner, Mariah Carey/Liza Minnelli, Dolly Parton/Bette Midler.

It was pretty amazing overall. Go see it.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Things I am Horrible at: Reading Vanity License Plates

Seriously. Troy thinks this is hilarious. I am SO bad at deciphering them. Something else I am bad at??

DO NOT ask me to play this game. You will always win and I will have a bad attitude.

But back to the license plates. Here are a couple examples and how the conversation went while I would try to figure them out.

The first horrible incident from my memory was with my friend Kristen. She still makes fun of me for this. She almost peed her pants listening to me trying to figure it out.

This is what the license plate said:


Kristen: Oh that guy must be a horrible driver.

Natalie: Huh? Why? How can you tell that?

Kristen: His license plate.

Natalie: Huh? I'm for money? Infamy? No that's not it.

Kristen (almost crashing her car to sideways look at me): Are you kidding me right now? Natalie. Come on.

Natalie: WHAT? I don't know! How can you tell he's a horrible driver? He likes money! Or he has a rich family. Like "I'm from money." Maybe he needs a wife. I don't know....

Kristen (while snorting and laughing): I'M FROM NEW YORK!!!!

Natalie: OHHHHHH I get it.

Most recently, Troy and I were out on a day date and we saw this license plate:


Troy: Oh that's appropriate for Vegas.

Natalie: Huh? Not otherwise specified eightent? What?

Troy: You are the worst.

Natalie: COME ON! You know I suck at this.

Troy: What are you talking about "not otherwise specified"???

Natalie: That's what is on lab reports when a sample is abnormal but there is no categorization for the identification of the anomaly.

Troy: So you go with "not otherwise specified" rather than "no"?

Natalie: I'm going to stop talking you through my thought process if you are going to make fun of me.

Troy: Oh thank God, I better keep going!

Natalie: HEY!

Troy: Seriously. What do you think it says?

Natalie: Seriously I don't know. Just tell me. You are only going to make fun of me.


Natalie: OHHHHHHHHHH that makes sense.

Example 3. We saw this one on the same trip as the previous one. At this point, he is showing off his skills and trying to make me feel stupid/wanting to laugh at me and have a story to tell his friends about how dumb I am.


Troy: Ok what do you think that one is. This is going to be good.

Natalie: 2 dungerees? Like jeans? Maybe he has twins.

Troy: BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA you're ridiculous!

Natalie: Ok what is it??

Troy: Too dangerous!

Natalie: Ohhhhhhhh that makes sense.

Example 4:


Troy: Ok, this one is easy.

Natalie (very confidently yelling): SHE'S A REALTOR!!! HOMES LOVE!




Natalie: You almost always win at games anyway. Just add this to that pile. I'm just not as competitive as you. It doesn't matter.

Troy: She's probably a stay at home mom. It's home slave!

Natalie: You don't know. That could be any number of things. Homes love. Home: Southern Las Vegas.

Troy: Just stop. You lose.

Natalie: .............ok fine.

So yeah. I suck at deciphering license plates. And playing Mad Gab.