Sunday, April 30, 2006

Shadows Of The Setting Sun

This picture was taken at Pointe View Lodge in Jamestown, Tennessee. It's a breathtakingly serene place. Call today to reserve a spot!

Friday, April 28, 2006

Working The Yard


Two of my three nephews, helping Papa in the yard.

They are putting their construction genes to work. They love digging, weeding, raking, helping Papa "machete" the cactus and anything to do with a wheelbarrow.

They're young. What the hell do they know???

Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Toes Of Summer Are Peeking Out

I was settin' on the porch the other day and this is what was settin' next to me. I guess summer is right around the corner, evidenced by this full color preview!!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Last, Best Chance

I don't know if being with Mina is enlightening or depressing. The other day while I was putting on my makeup, she asked me to put some on her also. I said something to the effect of "Well, you'll have to ask Mommy if its okay..."

She responded with this:

"But, I'm suuure Mommy would let me if you said it was okay. She would. You're a grown up. But you're not married yet (she paused to ponder this), so you're not a grown up grown up. But you're grown. Like a sister. Yeah! Like a big sister! That's what you're like. So I'm sure Mommy would let me if you said so."

OK, what does this mean? You're only a real grown up if you're married???

Well, she is only five. Perhaps her perspective is a little limited.


"Marriage is our last, best chance to grow up." ~ Joseph Barth

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Blurry Super Hero

If you know Nashville, you know this building. It's the Bell South tower, but everyone calles it the "The Batman Building". Can you see the blurry resemblance to said super hero??

Monday, April 24, 2006

This Mary Doesn't Go To Pre-School

While out to lunch today with Mina, I was listening to her tell me stories about her little friends at school. All of a sudden, I hear this come out of her mouth:

"...and then Mary, not Mary from God, but another Mary..."

Clearly, she thought I was going to be confused and think 'Mary from God' was attending her pre-school class.

Funniest part about the whole conversation is that I actually nodded my head in acknowledgment, as if to let her know, Oh, right. I know which Mary you mean. Not the one from God. Please, continue.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Glittering Pasties And Swinging Tassles

Last night, I had the pleasure of joining my friends at the Mercy Lounge in Nashville, starting off the night listening to a band called Sweater Weather play some rockin' swing tunes. The crowd was interesting and eclectic; girls in hairstyles, makeup and clothing reminiscent of the 40's and 50's and guys running the gamut from clean shaven suits to pierced eyebrow mohawks.

I wasn't there five minutes when I met a nice guy named David, a custom silk screen artist, at the merchandise table. He was tall, handsome and polite. You can always count on polite in the South, especially from a native Nashvillian. He was a pleasure to talk with until the music started and sucked the sound from our mouths. We exchanged a look that said I can't hear you anymore, smiled and parted ways back to our group of respective friends.

After the band finished their set and got the crowd good and riled up, the main attraction began; a Burlesque show performed by a group of gorgeous women called
Panty Raid.

They entertained us in true Burlesque style with ribald comedy, a little bit of dancing and a whole lot of striptease. Imagine
Bettie Page looks and Gypsy Rose Lee moves. It was a fantastic night and a great way to begin my mini-vacation in Nashville.

All of a sudden, I'm thinking I could probably make good use of a set of pasties and tassles; I think Eddie might just like a little hip shimmy and bosom swaying.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Southern Hideaway

Here is my beautiful little Nashville retreat.

Across the street from an 18,000 acre lake, minutes from shopping, the airport, downtown and Starbucks. I have my own room, the house is air conditioned, boasts a lightning fast cable modem, the yard is lush, the porch has rockers and the food is PHENOMENAL.

This morning, I sat on the porch eating breakfast and waved as the neighbors drove by. The sun was gleaming and the air was filled with the laughter of children and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee.

It gets a four star rating in my book; and no, I'm not telling you where it is.

Friday, April 21, 2006

An Eye For Fashion...And Other Things

Today, Mina and I went to the mall. In addition to hitting Claire's, the food court, the bookstore, The Pampered Something Or Other, I got the pleasure of watching her mesmerized by every "big girl" that walked by. The teenage girls talking on their cell phones, the girls flirting with the boys, the girls carrying "big girl" purses. Believe me, she doesn't miss ANYTHING.

All of a sudden, she turns to me and says, "A girlie store!!" and then proceeds to drag me into Victoria's Secret. She touched everything. Then after she points out the, in her words, "gorgeous heels" the mannequin in the window was wearing, she tells the fifty-trying-to-look-twenty year old sales woman that she loves her rhinestone bracelet and high heeled shoes! Everything, I tell you; she notices everything. And she's only five.

Here she is perusing the merchandise. Oh. My. God. I am in SO much trouble with her mother when I get home.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The Pressure

I never felt, nor succumbed to peer pressure when I was younger. I don't know why, I just wasn't easily persuaded to do things that others were doing. I was my own person. I was confident and secure. I was taught to be a leader, not a follower.

But yesterday, at the mall with Mina, I broke down. I caved. I gave in to the pressure of a five year old.

This picture is the result of that breakdown; rhinestone butterfly bobby pins. Mina insisted I wear both the blue and the pink butterflies. So here I am, sporting the look that a five year old masterminded.

I have to say, I feel quite spring chickenish being in her company. I guess sometimes pressure, even if not from a peer, is a good thing.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Ten Of Life's Simplest Pleasures

I was tagged by Irene to offer up my idea of life's simplest pleasures, so here goes:

1. My best friend: I don't know what I'd do or how I'd laugh so much without her. I can't think of a more simple, more exquisite way to spend a day.


2. Shalimar: This scent reminds me of my mother when I was a little girl.

3. Driving with Eddie: What better way to see the country and relax than in the seat of an 18-wheeler; with someone else driving!

4. Cash: So much better than credit. Irene reminded me of what it feels like to not be in debt.

5. Napping: Oh, how I love a good nap. It just can't ever be beat.

6. Air Conditioning: The best thing on earth. I could not LIVE without it.

7. Music: The perfect way to get lost.

8. Movies: Another way to escape into another world. Best seen in the middle of the afternoon. On a Tuesday. Alone.

9. Blackberries: Eaten right off the bush in your very own yard.

10. Orgasm: So simple, yet so pleasurable.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The Result Of A Little Flax In Your Diet

Today when I arrived in Nashville, my friend's daughter Mina was glued to my side; she did not leave my side from the moment I arrived until she went to bed. She crawled into my lap as soon as I opened the car door and then scooched her chair closer to mine at dinner. And, as usual, she was mesmerized by my new lipgloss.

Last night I dyed my hair; so dark, it almost looks black. Tonight, while sitting at the table, we had this conversation:

Mina: Your hair really dark, Miss Salena.

Me: I know. I just did it last night.

Mina: How?

Me: Well, I put some stuff in it like shampoo, left it in for about thirty minutes and then washed it out. Why, do you like it?

Mina: Yes! Can I do that?

Vicki (Mina's mother): What? Make your hair dark?? Mina, your hair will never be dark.

Me: Well, you can do it when you're eighteen.

Vicki: No, not even when you're eighteen.

Me: Yeah, but you probably won't want to do it when you're eighteen, because by then you'll have experienced the Power of Blonde.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Heading South And Going Country

I left New York today; heading for Nashville.

It's interesting how I transitioned from North to South. The last thing I did before I left New York was have pizza for lunch (since I know I won't be tasting anything remotely resembling pizza once I get to Tennessee) and the first thing I bought for my trip were three new country CD's.

The new releases by Rascal Flatts, Toby Keith (my imaginary boyfriend, who would be perfect if he weren't a Republican Redneck) and Carrie Underwood. It's a fantastic CD. Jesus Take The Wheel - omg. The words. The tune. The voice. It's reverberating in my head. And it's soooo good.

So, I'm five hours away from my destination. I'll be there just in time for dinner. Hello?? I'm not stupid - I know what a great cook my best friend is and I timed my arrival so I can just slip right into "my chair" in the kitchen.

My favorite spot in the world.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Ah, But It Is SO Worth It


"Life is like eating artichokes, you have got to go through so much to get so little" - Thomas Aloysius Dorgan

Friday, April 14, 2006

Seven! Seven! Seven! Seven! Seveeeeennnn!

If you're a Friends fan, you will get the title. If not, it's really too much to explain; watch the re-runs.

Other than that episode, which highlights the joy of seven!, there is another important thing - the number seven key on my cell phone. It's the one used to delete messages. I was talking to my cousin the other night and we were laughing at how much we utilize the "seven" button.

She was referring to not listening to her parents messages and how as soon as she hears their voice, she hits SEVEN. I do the same thing depending on who it is. I'm very anti-voice mail.

Unless it's something absolutely pressing and I must have the information STORED, then please leave a message. If not, don't leave a voicemail. I hate calling the phone to access it - especially when I get messages like this:

Oh, we must have gotten cut off. I guess you have a weak signal. (duh)

It's 3pm here, just calling to say hello, talk to you later. (I talk to you nine million times a day - please don't call me just to tell me what time it is.)

You must be at the movies, I guess I'll talk to you later. (Well, yeah, I told you I was going to the movies when I talked to you 20 minutes ago.)

I can't think of anything important enough to leave on voicemail if I talk to you a hundred times a week. If I don't talk to you often, then by all means, leave a message. Sometimes I save them to hear your voice at a later date.

The only ones who can escape the dreaded seven key are my nephews and my best friends kids. Those are the message I save to listen to over and over again. But if we're not talking about phone messages, then by all means, seven is a good thing.

Seven! Seven! Seven! Seven! Seven! Seven. Seven.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Five Guys I'm In Love With This Week

1. Vince D'Onofrio

2. Toby Keith

3. Viggo Mortensen

4. Hugh Grant

5. Simon Cowell

Eddie better stay on the straight and narrow, 'cause I'll be gone like *THAT* should any of these guys call.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

There Is Still A Chance

As you may know, I've been going through a lot of pictures since my Dad died and I've come up with some great ones that I haven't shared (why bore you THAT much?), but I couldn't keep these to myself.

Will you LOOK at my mother??? A natural beauty. This is the year I was born - where did that hair come from? How come mine never got that long? See - this is what I mean, I have to grow it now. If SHE is that gorgeous, maybe I can be too - it's the hair, right?
Here is the hair again - but she's pregnant with my brother. We didn't know Michael was going to be such a little fatty boom batty when he was a baby, but this belly should have been a clue. Helloooo?
It only gets better - the next two pictures are of my mother after two kids. Holy shit! I don't look that good and I don't even HAVE kids. Maybe that's the secret? Holy crap - I have to have kids??? I'm going to get all Irene and resurrect the white eye shadow. That, and my new long hair may bring me close to the height of beautiful perfection you see here:

That last pic has a pretty good story behind it.....something about the garbage guy finding the negatives of a scantily clad woman in the trash (hint - my mom) and my father almost taking his arm off. Uh, something like that.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Dings And Hos

Drake’s snack cakes are only found on the East Coast. Why, I do not know. But since we have several friends and family members on the West Coast who desire all things Drake’s, I might have to consider importing them; I do have a truck, you know.

Recently, my cousin Ro and I had this conversation about Ring Dings:

Ro: Do they still wrap Ring Dings in foil?

Me: Yeah.

Ro: Are you sure? ‘Cause I got them in a 2 pack and they weren’t in foil.

Me: Well, you have to buy the box; then they’re individually wrapped in foil. It’s funny, because I was just telling Ed the other day about Yodels and he was like, “What’s a yodel??” Shocked that he didn’t know, I tried to explain they were like Swiss Rolls but not the same. Like HoHos are kinda like Ring Dings, but not, you know what I mean?

Ro: Definitely not the same. You should just tell him that Yodels are chocolate, cream, cake and goodness and that Hos are no substitute for Ring Dings. Ever.

Although in some circles, one might choose a Ho over a Ding.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Relationship Deal Breakers

Girl A: I mean, John Doe and I had something different, where I think we "clicked" more. But, I guess that was only on my part - apparently he didn't feel that way.

Girl B: clicking is cool

Girl A: yeah, clicking is....until they stick their dick in someone else.

Girl B: yeah, that does ruin it doesn't it?

Girl A: uh, yeah. Sort of.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Basket of Knowledge

This was my cousin's dinner tonight; the Hunan Flower Basket (please forgive the crappy cell phone photo), prepared at a lovely little Chinese restaurant in Westchester called The Imperial Wok. Not only was it one of the most beautiful meals I've ever seen, but also one of the best I've ever eaten.

We had an amazing waiter, named Yong Lang Liu who was 19 years old, and only speaking English for about 3 years. He was extremely intelligent and the most personable waiter I've ever had; giving us the entire history of China before we finished our meal!

We already decided we'll be going back to this place, but only if Yong Lang is there to bring us another basket of knowledge.

Friday, April 07, 2006

One Stop Shopping

The perfect place for before AND after the party; beer for the party, aspirin for your headache and batteries for your vibrator. It's gonna be a goooood night.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

04 05 06

In the wee hours of this morning, at 2 minutes and 3 seconds after 1:00 a.m. the date and time will read:

01:02:03 04/05/06

Monday, April 03, 2006

One, Two, Three, Floor

You can't see them all in this picture, but we found eight tasty little ways to get ready for a nap.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Whadya Think This Is, The Waldorf??

Actually, yes. From left to right; my Uncle Roger, Aunt Vera, my mother and my father.

This was November 13, 1970 and they were in the Empire Room at The Waldorf Astoria to see Johnny Mathis.

I can see my father's "thick and thins", that's what they used to call the socks he is wearing, the ones that are sheer, with solid striped throughout. They were all the rage at the time and all the best dressed guys owned a pair; I think it was a New York thing.

My mother is wearing a chocolate satin hot pants outfit that she made, with a sequined scarf that hung to her waist.

I think my mother just inspired my next hairdo. I'm going to grow it all out and go retro; back to the seventies - white eyeshadow included!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

This Is No Joke

You saw the pile of hair. I know it's April Fool's Day, but this isn't a joke.

Old hair, shoulder length: New hair, after the hacking. (I took off about two and a half inches):
Aunt Vera loved it. What say you, Neilochka?