Don't forget to visit my website! Jackie Coleman - Author

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Great-Aunt Carrie's Toy Chairs

When I was growing up, my mom would take us kids to see my Grandma, who lived with her spinster sister (Great-Aunt Addie) and her brother's widow (Great-Aunt Carrie).

Aunt Addie and Aunt Carrie tried to stay out of the way and let Grandma visit with us kids, but I'd always wander into Aunt Carrie's room ... and stare at the three little chairs her father whittled for her when she was a little girl. She was born in 1901, so these chairs are over 100 years old now. Aunt Carrie was a sweet old lady. She never had any children, but I suspect she would have been a wonderful, loving mother. I liked being around Aunt Carrie ... and I absolutely adored those chairs!

After Aunt Carrie died, my mom got the three little chairs. I (morbidly) told my mom (often) that when she died, I wanted Aunt Carrie's chairs. When my mother died, my brothers and sisters asked what I wanted. I told them that all I wanted was Aunt Carrie's chairs.

I did get Aunt Carrie's chairs ... and all these years later, I love them as much as I did as a child. Every time I look at them I think of Aunt Carrie's kind eyes and sweet smile. I'm sure it makes her happy when she looks down from heaven to see those chairs taken care of and protected, and that she knows I treasure them as much as she did.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

WWII Memorial in Washington DC

The World War II Memorial in Washington, DC
The World War II Memorial in Washington, DC was dedicated on April 29, 2004 to honor the brave men and women who served during the war. I think it's a shame that it took 59 years to honor these patriotic American's. Sadly, many of those who served never lived to see this monument ... my father included. My kids and I went to Washington DC on Thanksgiving Day, 2004. The memorial was still under construction and hidden from view ... and I really wanted a glimpse!

Four Hundred Thousand Americans lost their lives during World War II. One wall of the monument holds four thousand stars, one star for each one hundred American's killed. Had these men and women lived, most would have came home and started a family. It's hard not to wonder what these men and women, and their children and grandchildren, could have accomplished. Perhaps a cure for cancer ... or, on a lighter note, perhaps they would have perfected the hovering skateboard from 'Back to the Future'.
Field of Stars to commemorate the 400,000 men and women who gave their lives for the war.
My father fought during World War II in the Pacific Theater. I wrote a blog post about my father's service during the war (you can read it here), and his crossing the equator on D-Day, June 6, 1944, as part of General MacAuthor's promise to return to the Philippines and liberate them from the Japanese.

Those who fought this war, both at home and abroad, are often referred to as 'The Greatest Generation', and I couldn't agree more. I do wish, however, that my generation or my children's generation could be called that, but we won't be, and we shouldn't be ... because we aren't.

Maybe one day a new generation of children will be raised with the same faith and patriotic spirit of my parents and they will emerge as a new 'Greatest Generation'.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Safari Cat

Louie, Thing 1's silly cat, was always trying to escape and go outside ... so she bought him a harness and leash. Surprisingly, Louie doesn't seem to mind the harness or the leash at all, which is surprising because, well ... he's a cat ... and they generally don't let on that they enjoy anything.

A cat that tolerates this is new to our family. Years ago we bought Mr. Whiskers a harness and leash, and he slunk (is that a word?) around the yard crouched down and terrified. Sweet little Maggie never wanted to go outside, and Olivia can only walk backwards when wearing anything other than a collar ... or she falls over, stiff-legged as though rigor mortis has set in!

We can rest secure in the knowledge that Louie is okay with the leash because he didn't yell at my daughter. Louie is very vocal. When he isn't happy, he tells you. When Thing 1 gets up in the morning, Louie meets her at her bedroom door, complaining that he was locked out of the room all night ... and why does the stupid dog get to stay in there and not him? When she comes home from work, he meets her at the door and tells her all about his day. He goes on for quite a while, so apparently, no detail is too small to include in his litany.

Now that Louie knows he can go outside, I expect him to pester Thing 1 to take him outside all the time. I fear, in her sweet innocence, she's created a monster.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Happy Birthday to My Friend!

Last Saturday was a good friend's 50th birthday. We invited the couple over for lunch and grilled out, then sat around talking and laughing. It was my boyfriend's job to get the birthday boy away from the house, so I went into the other room and called him, pretending to be the security company and inform him that the alarm was going off at his business. The guys took off to go fight evil, while my friend and I decorated and waited for her kids to run all over town picking up the food and deliver it to us.

The birthday boy never suspected a thing and was completely surprised when the garage door opened to reveal his friends and family, packed in like sardines, screaming "Surprise!"

The party had to be moved inside due to rain, but we were able to move back outside after the storm passed. Other than the rain, the party went off without a hitch and everyone had a blast.

I kind of felt obligated to host his birthday party ... I'm the one who talked her into going out with him years ago. If I hadn't done that, they would never have gotten married, and she wouldn't be planning his birthday party. It's my "fault" that she's married to him, so the least I could do was offer my boyfriend's house for the party, right?!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

I Will NOT Be Traversing El Caminito del Rey When it Re-Opens

Spain's El Caminito del Rey, said to be the world's most dangerous walkway, is set to re-open soon. As someone with a paralyzing fear of heights, I cannot wrap my head around the mindset of people who enjoy this type of "thrill", but they do exist ... by the hundreds of thousands. I, however, am not one of those people. Nothing could ever convince me to get on that trail ... not even a gun to my head.

Take a few moments to search for video's of it. They make my stomach do flip-flops. I'm sure it's on more than one "Bucket List" ... but it's definitely not on mine!

Oddly, I wrote this blog post about a week ago, and the other night, my sweetie told me about a video he'd seen of an insane hike. I asked him if it was El Caminito del Rey. His mouth fell open and he asked how I knew that. I told him I had a blog post already written about it! He found that coincidence incredulous!

Together we looked up a few video's on it and watched them. He watched with a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye ... while I looked on like I was watching an autopsy. I asked him if he would actually hike it, and he said yes. I don't do "scary", and he knows that. When he wants to watch a scary movie, I tell him I think that's a "Daddy/Daughter" activity, which is what I told him about this. He said he'd have a heart attack if one of his daughters attempted this hike ... but he'd do it in a heartbeat. I told him "Not if I have any say in it" ... which I don't. As much as I want him to experience all the things his heart desires, this is one adventure I'm not keen for him to participate in. I wouldn't even be able to watch him from the safety of the ground ... I'd have to be back at the hotel ... sedated!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Answer is "Yes" ...

Yes, you do look fat.
And yes, this picture is going on the internet.
And finally, giving me the evil eye
won't change my mind.

Friday, April 24, 2015

A Smack?

This was funnier when I read it without my reading glasses! I thought it said a group of jellyfish were called a SNACK ... and I wondered who thought up that name. Sharks?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Titus 2:12

My daughter and I recently went to see someone in the hospital ... one whose poor decision led to them being there in the first place. She left this nugget of wisdom on the whiteboard in the room ... words that this young person desperately needs to heed.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I Did Not Know That

There are a lot of traits I envy in animals. It would be amazing to be able to fly like a bird, run as fast as a gazelle, or even curl up into a perfect little ball like a roly-poly bug ... but I'm not sure licking my eyes would make the list!

Monday, April 20, 2015


After waiting SEVEN HOURS for 182 Windows updates to install, I get this message. I was able to fix the problem and get all the updates installed ... and then install many, many more updates ... but this meant an entire day wasted. Very frustrating!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Neighbor Holds Picnic Table Hostage

I'll bet one neighbor won't be invited to any more barbecues ... and the other neighbor is going to have to go to the library the next time they want to borrow a book!!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Friday, April 17, 2015

She Looks Guilty

She looks like she's worried we'll find out what she did.
 Which leads me to wonder ... 
what, exactly, did she do?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

It's National High-Five Day!

You are encouraged to celebrate National High-Five Day by high-fiving friends, family, co-workers, and strangers on the street. Since I won't be able to get around to everyone, I'm sending a virtual high-five!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Trying to Get Me to Pet Her

Olivia, pretending she's asleep, trying to get me to pet her.
It didn't work.
I'll pet her when she's the one cleaning up her hairballs.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Thing 2 Babysat the Other Night

The little guy ate and played, then we came inside to wash up and cuddle. I told her I was going upstairs to get ready for bed. She said they'd come "hang out" with me. She fell asleep before the baby did! 

(P.S. The cheetah throw belongs to Thing 2 ... not me!)

Monday, April 13, 2015

How Long Has THIS Been There?

My daughter and her husband stayed with me for about a month last year while they looked for another house after their lease ran out. They brought their dog and cat with them. I thought it might be awkward or an imposition to have them, here ... but it turns out it was rather nice! I enjoyed having them here and was sad to see them go when they found another place.

The other day I was looking out the dining room window at the backyard when I noticed something on the swing rope. It's hard to see in the picture to the left (a larger one is below).

I have looked out this window every day since I bought this house in 1999. Granted, this pooper scooper hasn't been hanging there since 1999, but it has to have been there since last spring ... close to a year! How did I not see this before now???

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Thank You ... That Is Very Helpful ...

If you're not going to include any information in the article, you don't really need to make a special link to the article ... all you really need is a headline!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Wine Tasting & Power Tools ...

Is this really a good idea?

My Sweetie Cooked Me Dinner Last Night

Looks tasty, huh?!
He tried to blame the new stove ... and me ... but I didn't buy it! Chivalry, however, is not dead ... he ate the really burnt one. But I'm not complaining. It was sweet that he wanted to cook for me ... and a grilled cheese sandwich cooked by someone else tastes good ... even if it is a little "overdone".

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

ACTUAL Email to Tech Support Where I Work

I've redacted all identifying info to protect the "innocent" ... "innocent" not as in "not guilty", but rather innocent as in "bless her heart"! We get a lot of emails from less-than-tech-savvy users ... but this was the first where one couldn't find their desktop!

This, my friends, is what we in the industry like to call "job security" :)

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Today is National Beer Day

I'm not a big beer drinker, or a big drinker in general, but if I were, today would be a good day. National Beer Day is celebrated April 7th to commemorate the Cullen-Harrison Act, which made it legal to sell beer again after thirteen years of Prohibition.

In light of two horrific car crashes here recently involving drunk drivers, one that left a sixteen year old dead and seven others injured (six critically), I sure hope that those who plan to celebrate tonight designate a sober driver or take a taxi home.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Sunday, April 5, 2015

The Easter Bunny Has Been Busy

The Easter Bunny spent a few hours yesterday delivering baskets to my kids, my little nephew, and my boyfriends kids and grandkids yesterday. Missing from the photo is my sweetie's delivery, and Thing 2 talked the Bunny into getting her Easter basket a few weeks ago.

Each basket was tailored to the recipient. Cupcake-obsessed Thing 1 got watermelon cupcake mix, watermelon frosting, cupcake wrappers, and a Cupcake-2-Go holder (to easily take a cupcake to work for lunch), all tucked into a mixing bowl.

But the cutest gift was for my boyfriend's youngest daughter and her new husband ... Lindt chocolate kissing bunnies. Tucked in behind the bunnies (not visible in the photo) are packets of herb seeds. She loves growing fresh herbs and salad fixin's. Aren't the bunnies adorable?!!

I saw the Easter Bunny hopping across my boyfriend's driveway last night, but I didn't have time to get my camera out and take his picture. He wasn't carrying anything, so I guess he had already finished all of his deliveries.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Not Sure What's Going On With This Little One ...

My boyfriend recently bought a new stove and it came with a bracket to attach it to the wall so that children don't tip it over on them. I didn't realize this was a problem ... I just taught my kids "hot", and they stayed away from the oven. Mine were a little more ingenious than this child ... they just dragged a chair over to the counter if they couldn't reach something.

Anyway, it's not the warning that perplexes me much as the accompanying illustration ...

Does this kid have two heads ... or a giant rear-end?

Friday, April 3, 2015

The Trees Are Blooming ... It's REALLY Spring!

I didn't notice this tree until lunchtime yesterday. I had noticed that the grass is greening up, so I'm not completely oblivious to the changes around me ... but I hadn't noticed the trees. After seeing this breath of fresh air, I started looking around and realized flowering trees are blooming everywhere, and the other types of trees are budding. I guess I've been driving around with my head in a hole!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Today is National PB&J Day

Photo courtesy of
I eat peanut butter sandwiches all the time ... spread so think you could read through it ... but I eat it because it's fast and easy, not because I particularly like it. I don't hate peanut butter, I just don't love it. If someone told me I could never have peanut butter ever again, I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

When I was growing up, my mother would make us kids pb&j sandwiches. She was always heavy on the peanut butter, light on the jelly. Actually, I prefer it the other way around!

On the news this morning, the anchor said 60% of Americans prefer smooth peanut butter, while 40% prefer chunky. That really surprised me! I figured it would be closer to 97% smooth/3% chunky! If I want peanut butter, I'll eat peanut butter. If I want peanuts, I'll eat peanuts. As strange as it sounds, I don't want peanuts in my peanut butter!

Honestly, I truly hope I'm never so hungry that chunky peanut butter sounds good.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Bridal Shower/Wedding Season Has Begun

The girl's and I attended a Bridal Shower last weekend. It was for a very, very sweet childhood friend of Thing 1. We played a game that involved holding up mustache's or lips. Sorry, but I can't explain the game ... what happens at bridal showers, stays at bridal showers!