Meet Me In St. Louis Part 1 (a tour of my city on Julia’s 15th birthday)

I’m BAaaaaaack!!!  Show of hands….  did anybody miss me?  Ah, no matter, I missed YOU enough for all of us!  lol  My life has been PACKED with so much excitement and activity and I don’t really know where a good place to begin!  I feel like I’ve crammed enough living for a year in these past couple of days.  Or close to it 🙂

So, you all know that last week was my baby girls 15th birthday, right?  I asked you guys for some ideas to help us celebrate in a special way.  You all had some fantastic ideas and we used some of them, so for that I thank you!  Carla suggested a photo shoot and a makeover.  These girls live their LIVES doing makeovers so we didn’t choose that but we DID have a blast doing photo shoots.  We spent the weekend touring the city of St. Louis and took over 500 shots.  By the end of the weekend I think the girls wanted to HURT my camera!  Maybe I over did it a little? Nah.  But they really did have fun and felt so special being the star of the show.  So Carla, THANK YOU!  The girls and I had a BLAST and more importantly, we made some memories that we won’t soon forget.

You know how I am about showing you too many pictures, right?  I do that because I’m proud AND I can’t decide which ones are the more important shots.  ALL of them are important to me.  Don’t worry though, I won’t show you all 500 of them!  lol  I’m going to do little segments, one day at a time.

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(I think Hannah was the one to smash the cupcakes… look at her evil face!  She wouldn’t admit it though)

We arrived at the Hilton with Julia’s birthday cupcakes NOT in one piece!  lol  One of the girls threw their luggage on top of the special cupcakes that I had made for the occasion!  ARGH!  NOT a good way to start the weekend.  These cupcakes were delicious and SO pretty before they got smashed.  There’s a place in a town near us called Sweet-T-Pies and they make the best cupcakes filled with any kind of filling you could dream of!  OMG!  They’re the most delicious little cakes any of us have ever tasted! Still divine even if they WERE smashed 🙂  Oh well, it’s the thought that counts, right?

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Once we got checked into our room, we made Julia hide in the bathroom so we could decorate for her.  Notice the little princess crown on her head?  Part of the deal was that she had to wear her birthday tiara everywhere we went so that the whole world would know that my princess was having a birthday!  Did she do it?  Nope.  She’s way too shy and doesn’t like unnecessary attention.  I’d say this was a weekend where the attention was NECESSARY!  lol

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Remember those expensive pretty little smashed cupcakes?  Yeah, as IF smashing them wasn’t enough, HANNAH (Julia’s bff) decided Julia should wear one too!  Silly girls 😉

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(Street car or trolley like the one used in Meet me in St. Louis.  Don’t mind the white cloud streaming into the pic.  It’s not a ghost… just the smoke from my cigarette cause I’m classy like that!  lol)

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Do any of you know the Judy Garland movie “Meet Me in St. Louis”?  Of course, being a St. Louis native, I grew up watching this classic and LOVE it still.  Every Christmas, it’s a family tradition at my house and we all sit down with popcorn and watch.  The song “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” was first sang by Judy Garland in this movie.  The whole movie was filmed in University City on the Delmar Loop.  It used to be known for it’s streetcars or “trolleys”.  Well here’s a street car just like the one featured in “Meet Me In St. Louis”.  I can’t get the “Trolley Song” out of my head now!  lol

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(I know this is too dark but I wanted to show you the neon sign for the Blueberry Hill restaurant)

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(Chuck Berry’s guitar and other music memorabilia)

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(Julia can’t decide which crappy food item to order)

The first stop of the night (besides shopping at one of the cool stores on the strip) was Blueberry Hill Restaurant.  You all know Chuck Berry, right?  He’s a St. Louis native who’s legendary for his guitar playing and song writing.  One of my favorites is “Roll Over Beethoven”…  Anyway, this is his restaurant.  It’s a landmark, for sure but if you ever come to St. Louis and decide to visit Blueberry Hill, don’t judge our cuisine based on what you find in this restaurant!  It’s pretty sucky.  Only go here for the atmosphere, the music and their toy collection.  As soon as we walked through the door, we were greeted by a young college kid who didn’t say hello, instead he barked, “All minors have to be outta here by 10:00 p.m.”.  As IF I was going to keep my kids there doing shots of tequila!  So, not only was the food bad but they weren’t even friendly.  Too bad cause I’m generally a really good tipper and I LOVE to write reviews!  lol The girls had fun and soaked in the music and atmosphere though.  THAT was the important thing 🙂

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(I love neon signs and city streets at night)

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(the Tivoli lobby where we spent most of our time waiting for the couple to stop their love making inside the theater…  it was beautiful though *NOT the love making* …  I felt like we were transported back to the year 1924 when this place was new)

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(the ceiling of the Tivoli… LOVE the decor of these old city buildings)

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(my girls were a little bored and didn’t know when it would be appropriate to enter the theater room where the couple was making out… they didn’t want to interrupt)

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The big event of our first night was to catch a midnight showing of “A Place Beyond The Pines” with Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper.  I couldn’t WAIT to show the girls the Landmark Tivoli theater!  This was a theater that made it”s debut in 1924 and it was known for it’s luxury.  For the day, The Tivoli was considered one of the most luxurious theaters in the USA.  It went through a period of decline in the early 90’s and eventually shut down.  The owners of Blueberry Hill renovated it in the mid 90’s and restored it to it’s original state.  However, it would appear to be going through another period of decline.  First of all, I should tell you that the Tivoli is THE place to go if you want to catch an “artsy” film.  Granted, “A Place Beyond The Pines” is NOT an artsy film (the girls HAD to see this one because they’re all in major LOVE with Ryan Gosling, and REALLY…. who could blame them?).  That being said, you’d think that a theater known for their showings of the “artsy film genre” would be a clean and well kept theater.  Or at least I would think that to be true.  Well…  it was clean in the lobby.  The room where we watched the movie had sticky floors and the seats were worn and appeared to have been new in the ’90’s, when it was last renovated.  Upon walking through the door, we were a little shocked to find a college couple doing some pretty HEAVY “petting” and making out!  The girls felt uncomfortable to have interrupted this lovely couple.  Soooo… we had to wait in the lobby until the movie started.  You all know me and MY big mouth!  I suggested LOUDLY that they get a room, which only seemed to embarrass my girls further!  lol  I’ve said this several times before… SUCKS TO BE MY KID!  lol  However, the couple didn’t take me up on my suggestion.  All in all, it was fun to stay out late and watch a midnight movie.  What was scary?  Walking the streets of Delmar after the bars closed down.  We were followed by a man who appeared to be way TOO interested in my girls.  I invited him to let me know what his intentions were.  He didn’t appear to want to mess with “Mama Bear”.  GOOD for him.  He, apparently wasn’t TOO drunk to miss the evil gleam in my eye 😉

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And this is how our night ended!  2 of the crazy girls crashed just as soon as we got back to our room!  I wanted to sit up and talk but THEY were tired and wouldn’t humor me!  lol

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Landslide / Happy Birthday Baby Girl

My baby turns 15 today! Wow. As if I didn’t already feel old.

Here’s a song Julia grew up listening to (the Dixie Chick version was the only one she knew). To me though, as much as I adore the Dixie Chicks, NOBODY can sing it like Stevie Nicks.

NOW, this song is appropriate. Now, she’s older and I’m watching my baby turn from a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly. Soon she will fly.

Today, we listened to this song and she cried a little. She’s always cherished being the baby of the family. She’s not sure she wants to grow up but we all know that we can’t stop time. We can’t even slow it down a little.

Landslide

Songwriters: NICKS, STEVIE
I took my love and I took it down
Climbed a mountain then I turned around
And I saw my reflection in the snow covered hills
Well the landslide brought me down

Oh, mirror in the sky
What is love?
Can the child within my heart rise above
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides
Can I handle the seasons of my life

Uh ah … uh ah …. uh ah …

Well, I’ve been afraid of changin’
‘Cause I built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Children get older
I’m getting older too

Well …

(Instrumental)

Well, I’ve been afraid of changin’
‘Cause I built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Children get older
I’m getting older too

Well, I’m getting older too

So, take this love and take it down
Yeah, and if you climb a mountain and ya turn around
And If you see my reflection in the snow covered hills
Well the landslide brought me down

If you see my reflection in the snow covered hills

Well maybe …
Well maybe …
Well maybe …

The landslide will bring you down.

Wish You Were Here….

I want to send a great big Happy Birthday, across the heavens to my little brother, my best friend always, the other half of my soul, my twin.

I’ll never forget you little bro. I miss you but I have a job to do and you already finished yours. I wish you were here so that I can see your eyes one more time when you laugh but truly, I know you wouldn’t come back even if you could. Your half of the soul was too good for this world, I think. This place hurt you too much. Now, I have peace knowing you’re happy and free once again, surrounded by all the love of heaven. You’ll be waiting when it’s my time, waiting to take my hand and show me all you already know.

I love you little brother. Happy Birthday. It’s so surreal thinking you’d be 46 (would you be fat and balding?) if you were still here but in reality, you’ll always be 18 for all eternity. Frozen in time.

John Clyde Akers II
April 10, 1967 to May 25, 1985

“Wish You Were Here”
Pink Floyd

So, so you think you can tell Heaven from Hell,
blue skies from pain.
Can you tell a green field from a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil?
Do you think you can tell?
And did they get you to trade your heroes for ghosts?
Hot ashes for trees?
Hot air for a cool breeze?
Cold comfort for change?
And did you exchange a walk on part in the war for a lead role in a cage?
How I wish, how I wish you were here.
We’re just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year,
Running over the same old ground.
What have we found? The same old fears.
Wish you were here.

Last day of sanity and a peek into Hubby’s future ;-)

Here’s the song that reminds Hubby of me especially when I have no synthetic hormones (refer to my last post “And you think I’m crazy now?”). lol

Watch the video and it will scare the crap out of you! I asked Hubby if Pink really reminds him of me and he says “Honestly, yes. On a bad day”. Well, honey, it’s about to be a bad day! I just took my last little life saver! lol So today we’ll celebrate, cause all should be good 🙂 Tomorrow…. I pity you 😉

Of course I’d love to tell you all I’m joking. And I’ll even go so far as to say I kind of am… the reality of it is, I can be BAD when it comes to mood swings and lack of hormones. How come nobody ever talks about these things? I guess no woman wants to admit to their own psycho menopausal behavior? Come on now, I CAN’T be the ONLY one! Well, I’m about to break the cycle of silence! lol Here I am telling you that it’s NOT a pretty picture. At least for ME, it’s not.

Pink
Please Don’t Leave Me

Da da da da, da da da da
Da da da, da da
Da da da, da da

I don’t know if I can yell any louder
How many time I’ve kicked you outta here?
Or said something insulting?
Da da da, da da

I can be so mean when I wanna be
I am capable of really anything
I can cut you into pieces
But my heart is broken
Da da da, da da

Please don’t leave me
Please don’t leave me
I always say how I don’t need you
But it’s always gonna come right back to this
Please, don’t leave me

How did I become so obnoxious?
What is it with you that makes me act like this?
I’ve never been this nasty
Da da da, da da

Can’t you tell that this is all just a contest?
The one that wins will be the one that hits the hardest
But baby I don’t mean it
I mean it, I promise
Da da da, da da

Please don’t leave me
Oh please don’t leave me
I always say how I don’t need you
But it’s always gonna come right back to this
Please, don’t leave me

I forgot to say out loud how beautiful you really are to me
I cannot be without, you’re my perfect little punching bag
And I need you, I’m sorry
Da da da, da da

Da da da da, da da da da
Da da da, da da
Please, please don’t leave me
(Da da da, da da)

Baby please don’t leave me
(Da da da, da da)
No, don’t leave me
Please don’t leave me no no no

You say I don’t need you
But it’s always gonna come right back
It’s gonna come right back to this
Please, don’t leave me

Please don’t leave me, oh no no no.
I always say how I don’t need you
But it’s always gonna come right back to this

Please don’t leave me
Baby, please, please don’t leave me

That’s what I said!

We come into this world unknown
But know that we are not alone
They try and knock us down
But change is coming, it’s our time now

Hey… everybody loses it,
Everybody wants to throw it all away sometimes
And hey… yeah I know what you’re going through
Don’t let it get the best of you, you’ll make it out alive
Ohh

People like us we’ve gotta stick together
Keep your head up, nothing lasts forever
Here’s to the damned, to the lost and forgotten
It’s hard to get high when you’re living on the bottom

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
We are all misfits living in a world on fire
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

Hey, this is not a funeral
It’s a revolution, after all your tears have turned to rage
Just wait, everything will be okay
Even when you’re feeling like it’s going down in flames
Ohh

People like us we’ve gotta stick together
Keep your head up nothing lasts forever
Here’s to the damned, to the lost and forgotten
It’s hard to get high when you’re living on the bottom

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
We are all misfits living in a world on fire
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
You’ve just gotta turn it up loud when the flames get higher
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

They can’t do nothing to you, they can’t do nothing to me
This is the life that we choose, this is the life that we bleed
So throw your fists in the air, come out, come out if you dare
Tonight we’re gonna change forever

Everybody loses it, everybody wants to throw it all away sometimes
Ohh

People like us we’ve gotta stick together
Keep your head up nothing lasts forever
Here’s to the damned, to the lost and forgotten
It’s hard to get high when you’re living on the bottom

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
We are all misfits living in a world on fire
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
You’ve just got to turn it up loud when the flames get higher
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
This one goes out to ALL my fellow misfits! lol Crank it up and DANCE. Celebrate life… it’s too short to be sad 🙂 Remember YOU are loved, very much!

People Like us by Kelly Clarkson

We’re all misfits living in a world on fire
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

Oh woah oh oh woah oh
You’ve just got to turn it up loud when the flames get higher
Oh woah oh oh woah oh
Sing it for the people like us, the people like us

“The Rain” , Here she comes…

Happy 20th Birthday Danielle Elizabeth! March 5, 1993.

20 years ago today, I gave birth to the tiniest little baby girl but the HUGEST fireball that ever blessed the County of Jefferson! lol I could hear the doctors excitedly say, “this one’s a WILD one” when she flipped her angry little baby body right out of their hands. She flipped her little body right off the scales when they were weighing her, as if she were a fish out of water. I should have known then that she was going to keep me on my toes. The first half of her life, she brought me chaos but more joy than I ever thought possible with a child. She was creative and had the brightest imagination of ALL my girls. She loved beautiful things, music, flowers and had so much passion. She was every bit as intense as I knew she would be. Mom’s just know things even when they’re carrying their babies inside, safe and warm. It wasn’t an easy pregnancy and she danced and did acrobats on my kidney’s and bladder and liver every single night and day of the 9 months I carried her. I used to BEG her to let me sleep but she wouldn’t comply, ever. I used to cry because it actually HURT to carry her. I couldn’t have known then that those would be some of the best days. The days when I didn’t have to share her with anyone else. I wish I would have known to cherish them. I don’t share well now and I never did.

I haven’t spent time with Danielle for 3 years now. She wanted her own life and we didn’t agree on the “rules”. I tried to protect her from herself and this big ole bad world. You can’t keep a butterfly alive in a jar with a tight lid. They’ll die. I thought I could though. I tried, I really did. People tell me she’s doing fine now and conquering the world. Yet, I hear from others that she’s her own worst enemy and does things to put her life in danger. She chose a life of drugs and endless partying. That was precisely what I was trying to protect her from because I saw it coming. Her father is an addict and she ran to him because she knew she could get away with anything… and she did.

I pray that God keeps her safe from herself and shows her all the potential that she was born with. I pray that she grows out of this phase of life where she feels indestructible and she eventually remembers all the love that we used to share. I pray that she remembers ALL of us who loved her so very much. She’s a stubborn one though. Even more so that me. She’s got my temper and stubbornness and her fathers idealism and stubbornness and it will take a miracle to break down those walls. I’ve got time though. We never really give up on our children, do we? Even when it would be easier to just walk away. I’m thankful for the time we DID have and I’m thankful for the blessings she’s shown me. God, PLEASE keep her in your loving arms, safe and warm like she used to be.

Every year I post the song that was playing when she was born. I had the radio on in my room and at the exact minute of her arrival, “Here Comes the Rain” by the Cult came on. It was prophetic, really. AND strange because it was one of her father’s favorite songs. She’s HIS girl now but she sure used to be a mommy’s girl. Happy birthday baby. You’ll NEVER be able to kill my love ♥

Music Tuesday! Me and my piano :-)

By now, all of my friends know that Tuesdays are my piano lessons with my Russian Piano Nazi.  I’ve written enough about her and I think most people can forgive me all my political INcorectness!   In my defense, she really IS Russian and I COULD be right about the whole Nazi thing.  lol  In reality,  I actually really am starting to like this girl.  My main problem was that she’s 20 and I’m 46.  While I’m VERY willing to give credit where credit is due, even to someone who’s younger than most of my wardrobe, I have a hard time explaining to her that my fingers don’t work like they used to work. She just doesn’t get it.  It’s okay.  I’m going to break her if it’s the last thing I do!  Maybe she’ll learn to love my excuses?  That’s what I’m hoping.

I’ve complained before that I’m just not FEELING the music that she chooses for me.  I realize I need to learn theory and there’s a variety of pieces that can help me achieve this.  I can’t complain if I don’t want to put the work into it, right?  THIS week, I put the work into it! YAY me!  Here’s how it’s been going;  She’ll pick out a couple of pieces and a whole lot of theory and finger strengthening exercises and I’ll learn them and more.  This week was no exception.  She’s been telling me that I’ve “nailed” it and that I can skip FAR ahead.  This week, I learned all my pieces in both books AND a couple of pieces she didn’t assign.

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new music came today and not a second too soon!

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Now THIS, my piano instructor will be SO excited about!  She’s been making me do exercises where I spend a half hour each day clapping and stomping out the time because I didn’t use a metronome.  lol  I felt like I knew how the song should sound (at least in my OWN head) so why did I need one of these?  I’m a little scared of this thing….

I’m just getting bored with the music.  FINALLY, my Amazon order came in with my new sheet music!  AND my metronome.  I’m SO very excited and can’t wait to start learning.  They look a little too easy though.  We’ll see.

I’m off here to go start having some fun 😉