You know how it is when you purchase a new car...and even though you think you are oh-so-original in your purchase...every other car seems to be the model you just bought? Yeah. Well, just so you know, when you sit down to think of your favorite things...you'll start writing about something and that will spawn something else that wasn't on one of the other umpteen lists...and before long...you've gone from 1 to 21.
It is a bit like Pinterest, frankly.
You hear the word "Pinterest" and you say to yourself..."Self...you need to be up on things and hip and all of that...find out what this 'Pinterest' business is before you end up out of touch and behind the times..." And so you get an invitation, figure out how to install that ridiculous "pin it" button (because in spite of a YouTube video that walks you through the process like you are in second grade...it still took me getting Brian in here to get it to work and I'm somewhat tech-savvy), and then you...
Do...what...exactly...? I knew not. So, I stuck a few things on a few boards and looked around a bit, but I never got all hot and heavy into it because I still didn't quite "get" it.
I think you have to see something that inspires you...or you have to have a purpose for being on...OR you can go to lunch with a bunch of ladies who direct your attention to the "search" box to the left that you had previously ignored.
Yeah, that whole "search" thing made it all make a whole lot more sense to me.
So, today, I've been pinning stuff on weddings all over my board. Not that Jill is anywhere near walking down the aisle (although she turns 22 on Monday...and I was 22 when I got married...)...
Still...I like to plan, dream, and start paying attention to what is going on out there in the do-it-yourself (or DIY for those of you who are totally into acronyms...I get enough of that at work as I'm a banker) world. I also just like passing through and admiring what other people are doing ahead of me when I don't have a dog in the fight, so to speak. Plus, my friend, Beve's daughter, Courtney, is getting married this year as is my friend Carrie's daughter, Caroline. I'm going to get the Cliff's Notes on weddings from them.
In the meantime...I'm still thinking of favorites...and here we go...
61. Homemade Biscuits
Yeah...I came out of the box with that one, huh? It is one of my favorite things precisely because I cannot do this. I've tried since I was a teenager...and with one exception (after which I quit)...my biscuits taste like the ingredients...not like a biscuit. They tend to be heavy, hard, and crunchy instead of buttery, soft and edible.
Every so often, I just love to go to Hardees or Cracker Barrel and have a biscuit as God intended. When I was young, my friend, Pam's mother, Becky, could turn out a pan of biscuits with little to no effort. They were amazing.
I worry about the future of homemade biscuits because everyone is all anti-carb (myself included right now) and microwave-happy. MeeMaws don't make biscuits like they used to for Sunday lunch...and I'm afraid in a generation or two...we're going to think that biscuits come from the freezer section at Publix. My family already thinks that.
So, if you are offered a homemade biscuit...enjoy it. It is on the endangered species list, I'm afraid.
62. Playing Jacks
Years ago, I used to be all into playing jacks with my friend, Dee. She was left handed and better at it than I was, but we played this game for hours growing up. I wonder sometimes in this technology-driven, kid-centric society if games like jacks ever get played anymore. They may have gone out of style with the hula hoop, ping-pong, punching balls, Big Wheels, Play-Doh, and that paddle with the ball and elastic string that we played with for fifteen minutes before we tore it up.
Of course, our mothers located said paddles and used them as weapons of mass destruction (minus the "m", of course) along with wooden spoons, hairbrushes and switches. Or maybe that was just MY house.
Not too long ago I saw a set of jacks and entertained purchasing them. They felt lightweight and flimsy...and it made me sad. But what makes me happy is the hours I spent trying to beat Dee and get all the way through without messing up. It is kind of like bowling a 300 game...you just keep at it in the vain hope that you will one day persevere.
And sometimes you actually do. Which rocks. Totally.
63. Peacock Feathers
I was born in 1963, which means that I spent my childhood in the 60s and early 70s. You know...the era of the most gosh-awful fashion EVER...avocado green, harvest gold, and burnt orange appliances...and earthy things...like peacock feathers. I have always liked the blue and green together and was delighted that my sister, Lara, had peacocks roaming around the grounds at her wedding venue in November 2010.
Back in the day, it was some serious decorating to have a vase of peacock feathers somewhere around. But then again, this was also the era of shag carpeting...so...um...whatever.
A few years ago, Vera Bradley came out with a pattern called Peacock that I just loved. In fact, I bought it for friends and for myself.
See? Way better, yes?
You know how you just love a song...and then someone figures out how to blend another song you like with it to create something entirely new? In my opinion, rap music has been pretty smart about doing that ever since I can remember. You'll remember this musical gem...
Which includes...if you recall...part of this song by Queen...
Or how M.C. Hammer's "Can't Touch This" had riffs from "Superfreak"? Yeah.
But the mashup is actually two separate songs mixed together to form something entirely different...which totally rocks. Like this...
"We Will Rock You" by Queen and "Back In Black" by AC/DC.
Or Pink Floyd's "The Wall" and the Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive"? Absolutely!
Green Day and Oasis? Uh huh.
Or the MOST unlikely...Rick Astley and Nirvana. By the way, why yes, that IS Dave Grohl of Foo Fighers wearing out that drum set. Rock on.
I do realize that we are all different, and that many people like to limit their exposure to French culture to French fries...but I'm in love with France. Part of that reason is because part of my heart is there in the form of my little sister, Linda, and her children Alex and Tara as well as my brother-in-law, Eric and children Thibault, Aurore, Amaury, Benjamin, and Engie. They live about two and a half hours from Paris...in a castle on property that has dwellings back from the 1200s. The 1200s!
Eric is the great-great-great grandson of Georges Clemenceau...the Prime Minister of France during WWI.
In 2006, Jill, Brian, the folks, a boy Jill was dating who had just graduated from high school and my aunt ended up in France for a visit. To say that it was amazing is an understatement. We saw the "Mona Lisa" at the Louvre. Saw "The Thinker" at the Rodan Museum, the Eiffel Tower, and Impressionist paintings at the Musee' d'Orsay.
66. Rachel McAdams
I am not judging her acting ability because I'm not in a position to do that...but I can say this...if Rachel McAdams is in a movie...I'm probably going to like it. I mean...who can beat that performance in "The Notebook"?
Or "Wedding Crashers"..."Morning Glory"..."Sherlock Holmes"..."The Hot Chick"...and "Mean Girls." Soon, she will be in "The Vow" with Channing Tatum. Did you read that? CHANNING TATUM.
Yes. Just yes.
67. Pedicures and OPI Nail Polish
I was in my 40's before I sat down in one of those magical massage chairs, set my feet in a warm whirlpool and swore I'd go every month if I could. Well...I haven't been able to do that...and I'm reminded of this when I actually DO go by the little man who tells me..."You come in more often. Feet crusty."
Yes. Crusty feet. Me.
At first I was mortified by this...but then came to understand that everyone my age is told the same thing as they bring out the cheese grater and scrape off a layer or twelve of crust. I get over my mortification, however, when they put that hot towel on my legs. Talk about awesome! Wow.
After that, they paint my toenails with a color like "My Chihuahua Bites," "Bubble Bath," or "You Don't Know Jacques" by OPI. I don't know if it is pronounced "O-pee" or "O.P.I" but...it is the only nail polish I use. I normally just bring my own to the salon so that I can fix what I will inevitably do the second I walk out of the salon.
Works for me.
If you are male and reading this...you need to go out right now and purchase a pedicure for your significant other. If you are female...take yourself on to the salon, girl. You totally deserve it.
68. People Who Have Your Back
In this day and age, it seems that people are more self-centered than others-centered than ever before. I know plenty of people who put others first...but as a general rule...times have changed. Isn't it nice when someone has your back? When something is said and you are defended because a person is more determined to tell the truth than to fit in?
Awesome, isn't it?
During the junior high years, girls have a way of tearing into each other...and sadly, the mothers join right in. It is worse for those with pretty daughters or high achievers. The level of jealousy is just breathtaking and the lengths that some girls and their mothers will go to is actually quite shocking. So shocking to me, in fact, that I crept silently away and made friends with the "boy moms" in my daughter's class because not only were they judgmental...they were fun! They are still among my closest friends...and yes...they have my back.
Not only my back...but my daughter's. She grew up with "other mothers" who loved her and taught her that it is not only possible...but wonderful...to have female friends. Trust me when I tell you that if you attend her wedding one day and you see several women being escorted in and noted in the wedding program...you'll know how much it meant to her.
As for me...I already do. I also know that if you are my friend...I have your back. Count on it.
69. Goodnight Moon
The other day, my friend, Bette, mentioned "Goodnight Moon" in an e-mail to me. We worked on a scrapbook page long ago...and apparently something reminded her of it so she wrote me. This book was one of the two books that Jill demanded as a little girl as part of her bedtime routine. Never mind that we didn't actually have to read it because we had both committed most of it to memory.
I don't know if I could recite it all...but I do know that it begins..."In the great green room...there was a telephone...and a red balloon...and a picture of...the cow jumping over the moon. There were three little bears...sitting on chairs..." and so on.
I cannot tell you how much I love this book. But honestly...I don't know if it is the book that I'm so enamored with or the rememberance of the smell of her hair, the weight of her little body in my lap, or the raspy little girl voice that read along with me. Possibly all of the above.
If you have little people in your life...buy this book. And enjoy that special, precious, sweet, wonderful time.
I know I did.
70. Dave Ramsey
Although this has been on my "list" for several days...one of my Facebook friends and her fiance' are currently in Atlanta listening to the master of "living like noone else...so that one day you can live like noone else" - Dave Ramsey.
He has a daily radio show, has written books, and has developed a program that helps people get out of debt. I don't know about you...but I'm a fan. A big one. Not only of Dave...but of debt-free living.
I'm a fan of it right now...but I'm not living it. But I am headed in that direction. Big time.
Thank you for reading this list and for encouraging me to write more! I love that you have my back.