Gusto Gal!

Thursday, September 25, 2003

This...ER...That: Puter stuff, compliments of Sunshine!
1. Search engine: Yahoo or Google? Yahoo is what I use for basic Web searches. Google is my choice for news searches.
2. Printer: Inkjet or laser? Our laserjet gets 95 percent of the use. Even though it is an oldie, it produces clean, crisp copies. The inkjet is needed mostly for faxing and color capability.
3. Browser: AOL or Explorer? I'm used to AOL now, using version 8.0, but I could adjust to MSN, if necessary.
4. E-mail: forward or copy/paste? Copy/paste. I'm a copy/paste queen.
5. Sound: volume on or off? On. I must hear my IM calling. Plus, "Welcome. You've got mail" is such a cheery greeting.
6. Screen saver: standard or unique? My computer blanks out after some number of idle minutes.
7. Out-of-town: e-mail to universal e-mail (yahoo, hotmail, etc.) or home account? My AOL account is the primary one for me, but I do have a back-up Yahoo.
8. Protection: Norton's or McAffee? Norton's.
9. Playing: News or games? I like both, but not too many games, Mah-Jong solitaire and jigsaw puzzles.
10. Being social: Chat rooms or message boards? I guess I am not much of a social butterfly, because I rarely chatr or a post. If I venture into any of thes forums, I am usually a lurker.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Vacation This...ER...That, compliments of Sunshine!
1. Black or white clothes? I suppose black because how can you get more classic? In reality, though, I am a more colorful gal. I like blues and pinks and purples.
2. Easter or Halloween? I love yellow chicks, spring tulips and the hopefulness of Easter.
3. Long weekend: Friday or Monday off? Friday off makes a good goal to reach at the end of a productive week.
4. Summer or winter? I'm a sunshine babe, I guess, so summer it is.
5. NYC or London? I haven't been to either and I would like to go to both, but my first choice would be New York.
6. Culture or kitsch? Both have their place, but kitsch is more comfy.
7. Postcards or trinket souvenirs? I like to use postcards for bookmarks.
8. Bright lights/big city or quiet hicktown? Moderate me probably would not make it in either setting. I feel more like a city mouse, however, than a country mouse.
9. New clothes or pack from your closet? On a trip, it is important to have homey reminders, so packing from my closet is my choice.
10. Daily routine or whatever comes to mind? I get rundown if I get too off my routine, but an occasional surprise keeps life exciting!

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

The workday at this home office seems a little cozier with Tommy the Cat as a companion. Now, even I can check on a feline and find out what sublime way he is passing his time. Plus, I need not worry about kitty on the keyboard.

Saturday, September 06, 2003

This OR That, complements of Sunshine.
1. or the real book? I have just become acquainted with on Sunshine's recommend. It is really handy and more comprehensive than the thesaurus feature in Word. When I really have a sticky-wicket, though, the last word, literally, is our jumbo real dictionary, the unabridged version.
2. Google news or Yahoo news? When I am in serious search mode for a news story, Google news is my definite preference. I do glance at the headlines on the main Yahoo page, but only if an item really grabs my attention, do I delve further intoYahoo news.
3. CBS or NBC? I am determined to see ER through to the end, so I'm tuning into NBC.
4. Whitening toothpaste or tartar control toothpaste? Toothpaste for sensitive teeth is what I use.
5. Gold or silver? Mostly gold. Silver has more of a "summery" feel to me ... I'm not sure why?
6. Hand sanitizer or Wet Naps (R)? We always have Wet Ones (R) in our vehicles.
7. Margarine sticks or tubs? Margarine in tubs; butter in sticks.
8. Roller ball mouse or laser mouse? A standard mouse is fine by me. I simply cannot get used to the built-in jobeedoo on my dad's laptop.
9. Dice games or card games? I would give a slight edge to card games, but I am not a real gamer. I am more of a puzzler.
10. French fries or Freedom fries? I'm sticking with french fries; why fuss with a good fry?

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Red - Stop! Take a moment from your busy day and let us know what it's like now that the kids are back in school. Hey, even if you don't have kids, I'm betting the traffic pattern has changed on your commute! ... and not for the better, eh?
Well, we are completely off our summer schedule now and back to our full-throttle work routine. I think I am fair in saying there are plusses and minuses to ordinary days. I like knowing basically what to expect the day to bring. I like Sunshine's company. I like feeling accomplished. I like being home and having a wider variety of channels to watch and places to do business. I miss sleeping in until 8ish. I miss boat trips for soaking up sun. I miss small town celebrations. I miss the spontaneous fun that had a way of splashing into my agenda.

Yellow - The leaves will be yellow and gold soon in New England! Who's your team this year? Oh, college of course! (Okay, you can go NFL if you'd like ...)
I could care less about sports, but this made me think of a cute bit of dialog I heard the other day. A woman was asking a high school senior, "So, are you on the football team?"

The student who had recently spent hours filling out college applications replied, "No, I'm on my school's homework team."

Green - Go ahead, tell us what is happening in your neck of the woods as Autumn approaches. I've heard tales of the ash trees turning golden in Pennsylvania while central California is still in triple digits. What are you seeing when you're out on your porch?
It is still slightly early for major color changes where I live. As far as I know, however, the cider mill is open. Time to get a bushel of apples and warm cinnamon doghnuts.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

It is REALLY hot today.

That's in all caps, because on the radio, I heard the meteorologist say it could reach 100 degrees. We, of course, have our AC running, so this morning I kept my legs wrapped in a blanket. When we ran our noon errands, the warmth initially felt good, thawing my freezing feet.

Then, I reached the melting point. No complaints from me about that because I refuse to curse the sun. Now, however, I'm home in the AC again and I am cold to the bone.

Am I living in Anarctica or Aruba; is it sub-zero or sizzling?

Sunday, August 17, 2003

Transitioning from one location to the next is hardly my favorite effort, but this seems like the perfect time for reflecting on favorite summer elements. The following memories are tops on my fun list for the 2003 season in the sun.

1. Wrapping a gift in Shipshewana without any tape after a late night Wal-Mart run. Yes, it can be done!
2. Meeting a poodle with painted red nails.
3. Catching rays on the boat while eating a cool key lime dessert.
4. Hearing Jimmy Buffett on the Today show one Friday morning sing, "Cheeseburgers in Paradise."
5. Delving into mile high lemon meringue pie at the Iroquois Hotel on Mackinac Island.
6. Wearing a sparkling blue stone that was a gift to me from an exhibitor at the Elk Rapids art fair.
7. Enjoying a farewell lunch with our friends who flew into town. Dining on the west bay harbor is so beautiful. It was a blustery afternoon, and our server's name was Abundance.
8. Watching "Seabiscuit," a really good movie, on one of the summer's rainiest days.
9. The first trip of the season to Cherry Hut, complete with Cherryade and warm cherry pie. Dad went with us on that visit. Mom and I returned about three other times. On one trip, we stopped at Gwen Frostic's shop/press. On another Beulah run, a stranger from Northport who frequents the Cherry Hut, surprised us by treating us to lunch.
10. Keeping Heidi's Web community running, with help from Sunshine, our little team and hard work. It feels good to see it survive through changing times. I think I can, I think I can ....

Monday, August 11, 2003

Friday's Weekly Wrap-up on Monday:

1. What was the first Disney movie you remember seeing? How did you like it? I think it may have been "Cinderella." I saw all of those animated Disney movies with my mom at the Huron theatre. It was close to the hairdresser where she took me to get my hair cut. So, a girl's afternoon would mean getting a new "doo" and seeing a show.

2. What was your favorite Disney movie as a child? Why? I liked "Mary Poppins" quite a bit, with its mixture of actual acting, animation and sing-songy music. When I think about it now, it may be because there really wasn't a scary scene or frightening villain. I am still such a fraidy cat ...

3. What is your favorite Disney movie now? Why? With my mermaid fascination as strong as it is, "The Little Mermaid" is certainly high on my list of faves.

4. What Disney character(s) do you most identify with? Why? I have a Minnie Mouse voice.

5. Describe your ideas for the next Disney movie (animated or live-action). I would love to see Nellie Bly as a Disney heroine. She made the round-the-world trip in 80 days, so her story as enough action potential.

Friday, August 08, 2003

Since This-or-That is on hiatus, here's something Sunshine devised to keep us fresh!
1. AOL IM or Yahoo! Messenger? AOL IM, because I have it automatically with my AOL membership ... no download necessary.
2. Chocolate chip cookies or oatmeal raisin cookies? Oatmeal can be a little chokey for me.
3. Bar soap or liquid soap? Liquid comes in some really cute bottles. We have one with a mermaid.
4. Bulk warehouse or 24-hour megastore? I love rock-around-the-clock shops. I never need pies the size of wagon wheels or monster-size Miracle Whip. I have, however, been known to cruise down Meijer aisles after midnight.
5. Home Depot or Lowe's? Home Depot. We do not yet have a Lowe's in TC, as far as I know.
6. Kentucky Fried Chicken or Arby's? KFC is better for picnicing purposes. Besides everybody needs a little KFC occasionally, right?
7. Mutt or pedigree? I am not a dog lover, but dogs with fancy papers certainly hold no special appeal for me. We do have a local training place at home, called, "Yuppie Puppy," which I think is a cute name.
8. Seafood or steak? I know it is fishy, but seafood is my choice.
9. Staples or paperclips? A girl can change her mind, and paperclips allow for that right. Plus, they come in pretty colors ... bubble gum pink and banana yellow.
10. Frankenmuth or Mackinaw(c)? Mackinac is a bit more of a treat, because we generally visit the island a single time each summer. We have it planned into a comfortable routine. Get on the earliest Arnold Line catamaran that we can. Stop at the Scrimshander first. Take our carriage ride past the mammoth, magnificient homes. Lunch at the Iriquois, where lemon meringue pie is a must for dessert. Tour the Grand, including the shops, the porch and the cupola bar. Stroll through back street shops. Buy fudge. Hit select front street shops. Boat off island as day is dusking into night. Eat speedy, substanitive dinner. Sweet dreams.

Saturday, August 02, 2003

A This-or-That from the past: Audience potpourri participation!
1) DVD or VHS? Our TV equipment belongs in the Smithsonian it is so antique. If I am choosing what we use, I have to pick VHS.
2) Best literary/movie villain: Voldemort (Harry Potter) or Sauron (LoTR)?
Voldermort. This has been my summer for learning about the Harry Potter phenomena. Right now, I am close to reaching the finale of book two.
3) Meat: rare or well-done? Well-done as opposed to rare, but when I am dining at a restaurant, usually I order medium-well.
4) High Speed Internet-Cable or DSL? Let's see ... DSL is just an ordinary line-into-the-wall connection, right? That's what we have and it suits me fine. I'm sure if I switched to high speed, I could get spoiled and become impatient with my sloooow setup.
5) Women: one-piece bathing suit or bikini? I like classic black one-piecer as a primary suit.
6) To be fair--Men: boxers or briefs? Boxers ... how about with yellow smileys on them?
7) Beer or liquor/wine? Champagne, because it means there is a reason to celebrate and toast.
8) Coke or Mountain Dew? Coke is it! Actually, I am not sure if I have ever tasted Mountain Dew.
9) Morning or afternoon/night wedding? Evening, because when you are putting on a "to-do," it takes prep time. However many hours I have to get ready, I always wish for a few more.
10) Carpet or hardwood floors? We have carpet at home and hardwood floors up north. Carpet is warmer, I think, but for accessibility reasons, I am favoring the hardwood.
11) American cars or foreign? Any wheels that roll are fine by me.
12) Cutest TV twin: Mary-Kate or Ashley Olsen? Mary-Kate, plus, I think her name is cuter, too.
13) Coffee: caffeinated or decaf? I'm a tea-sipper, really, but I figure if people are going to bear the bitter of coffee, they might as well get the benefit of a boost from caffeine.
14) Computers: Do they make life better or worse? Why? Sheeesh! This is a no-brainer for me ... of course, computers make the world better. I would probably go berserk without mine.

Monday, July 28, 2003

3 for Thursday: Even though it is Monday, nearly two weeks after the fact. Here are the details on my city/town.

1. Where do you live? For the summer, I am living in northern Michigan, still the lower peninsula, but plenty of woods and waves, pawed feet and flutterers around me.

2. What are 3 attractions/cool things about the city you live in? The little zoo, on the water, with native Michigan animals is quite cute. Then, the pie company with its assortment of crusted delights is comforting. For a slightly-distant pleasure Mackinac Island is a must mention.

3. What are 3 things you want in your city that it doesn't have? Good Chinese food, tropical temperatures and my kindred spirit, Sunshine.

4. What are 3 natural things (mountains, lakes, etc.) in your area? Lake Michigan, the Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes and tons of trilliums.

Bonus: What are the things you liked best/or disliked about the town you grew up? or If you lived in several places, what was your favorite place and why? I like the fact that I have always lived in the same general area. I like knowing where to find the best choices ... the best chicken noodle soup, the best bookstore. I like living close to my family and friends and occasionally driving by my first little school.

Friday, July 18, 2003

This-or-that: Summer Re-run!
1. Bugs Bunny or Daffy Duck? What's up, Doc?
2. Tom or Jerry? I'm from the mouse family, so Jerry is my choice.
3. Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck? I used to have a monogramed set of mouse ears.
4. Rocky & Bullwinkle or Boris & Natasha? Rocky & Bullwinkle, because I have never heard of Boris & Natasha.
5. Road Runner or Wile E. Coyote? Beep-beep!
6. Sylvester or Tweety? Tweety is a sweetie.
7. Popeye or Bluto? I better keep eating my spinach.
8. South Park or The Simpsons? Neither, really, but of the two, The Simpsons.
9. Jetsons or Flintstones? Flintstones vitamins were fascinating to me at one time.
10. And finally, the eternal question asked by all good Scooby-Doo fans: Velma or Daphne? Velma had glasses, right? I think I'm more of a Velma.

Sunday, July 13, 2003

I have already seen two fireworks displays this summer - one on the fourth and the close-of-Cherry-Festival celebration last evening. Each display had its own charm, and as far as I am concerned a person can never see too many fireworks in a lifetime.

For Independence Day, we went to small-town Northport, complete with its local choir presenting patriotic music. The group sang, "Fifty, Nifty United States," a song I remember from one of my elementary school music programs. The purpose when I had to learn the words was to get us to memorize all of our states.

When the fireworks finally started, the pyrotechnicians shot the shells off slowly. We kept thinking the show was finished, but they seemingly found more to light. My favorite was a firework that exploded into a yellow smiley face, made a quick cheery impression and then disappeared among all of the other chrysanthemums and starbursts. It turns out the same firework smiled over New York spectators, too. It makes me feel good to know that little-bitty Northport can have a glittering moment like the big city.

Last night's firework display over Grand Traverse Bay was more dazzling and professional than the other production. It was beautiful to be on the water's edge and to see the colors reflect on the dark and shimmery surface. Crowds of people oohed and ahhhed. Boaters who enjoyed the fireworks finale honked their horns in appreciation.

It made me feel really ALIVE to be among so many people in the breezy night air. The traffic this past week with the festival parades and events has been nerve-wracking. It has been a feat just to return a video or get a few groceries. Many of the "fudgies" will be clearing out of town today. I think this town needs a new name for people like me...I will never be a "local" because that title only is attributed to people born here, but I'm breathing a sigh of relief that the swarms are scuttling home.

Thursday, July 10, 2003

Summer Potpourri This-or-That:
1. Strawberries or blueberries? Strawberries. Just add shortcake.
2. "Legally Blonde 2" or "Terminator 3"? I am not a huge sequel fan.
3. Hamburgers or hot dogs? Hamburgers, please. Where's the beef?
4. Boating or hiking? Boating, actually sunning on the boat.
5. Suntan lotion or sunblock? Lotion, but I realize that is living dangerously.
6. "Big Brother" or "The Amazing Race"? I have never watched either one.
7. Beach Boys or Jimmy Buffett? Beach Boys. I want to get to Kokomo.
8. Grow your own produce or buy from supermarket/greengrocer/farm stand? Fresh tomatoes from the farmer’s market taste like summer to me. Yummy!
9. Drive with car windows/top down, or with air-conditioning on? A/C. I’m spoiled.
10. Go away for vacation or stay at home? Getaways are great fun, but it is important to have a day at home for recovery prior to returning to the routine.

Sunday, July 06, 2003

This-or-that: Summer Fun!
1. Lemonade or ice cold beer? Fresh-squeezed lemonade, with lotsa ice and sweetener, please!
2. Swimming pool or beach? The beach because it gives people a chance to search for seashells, Petoskey Stones and, of course, even mermaids!
3. Long weekends here and there or a two-week vacation? To really feel in the free spirit, it takes me a little longer than a long weekend, I think, but getaways of any duration are a delight.
4. Destination: Acapulco or Hawaii? Aloha, Hawaii!
5. Destination: mountains or beach? Spread out the beach towels by the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea.
6. Hotel/motel/B&B or camping? I’m too wimpy, not tough enough to rough it
7. Carefully planned vacation or play it by ear? I am definitely a planner, but I am open to making changes and I expect for snafus.
8. Sneakers or sandals? Shoeless.
9. Air-conditioning or fans? AC when it is sizzling and sunny.
10. Concerts in the park or baseball games? Strike up the tunes, not the bats.

Sunday, June 29, 2003

Friday Five on "away-cations":

1. How are you planning to spend the summer [winter]? Mostly, in T.C., working and playing, the traditional routine. Fireworks in Northport on Independence Day. Cherry festival fashion luncheon. Lazy days catching rays floating on the boat. MWA coverage. Great Lakes fish dinners. Ice creams, homemade pies and lemonade. Light reading. Art fairs, the one in Glen Arbor is a favorite. Today, actually, we are leaving for our traditional girls' getaway to Shipshewana, Ind . Amish country, here we come!
2. What was your first summer job? Summer is traditionally my "down time." I take my pace a little slower than usual. It is a time for rejuicing my batteries.
3. If you could go anywhere this summer [winter], where would you go? I think I would go to Chicago. I haven't had enough "big city" experiences yet.
4. What was your worst vacation ever? Even vacations where I have been sick have had silver linings.
5. What was your best vacation ever? I think probably the trip where we stayed a few nights on Nantucket. Island life is enchanting. The streets were cobblestone. Guinea hens roosted outside our inn door. Even the car we rented was memorable ... it was a purple grape Neon.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

I'm just getting my feet wet with this new blog ... dipping in my big toe and testing the temperature. Actually, my new watering hole is rather refreshing during a time when it is easy to feel hot and bothered.

Thanks to Sunshine for keeping me afloat. With her help, I am somehow catching my breath!

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

I'm home!

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