Sunday, April 23, 2006

Phantom of the Opera... again... sorta

I went to the Pocket Sandwich Theater (PST) tonight to see Phantom of the Opera with a bunch of friends for a surprise birthday party. And yes, party guy was suitably surprised. LOL There were 15 of us total who went and it was an experience.

Now before I go any farther, let me explain PST to you. This was my first time going but what an experience. If you like watching plays that are complete and total spoofs and you enjoy food fights (just popcorn permitted for the fighting though), then this is the place for you. It's a dinner theater with a twist. The whole point of this place is to laugh your head off, heckle the actors, and watch some complete and total on-purpose over-acting and bad acting. My goodness I did not stop laughing all night long!

We arrived about 5:30 as the birthday boy was going to be arriving shortly after that. The doors opened at 5:30 and we had reservations for our group (right smack front and center - all the better for popcorn throwing my dears.) They serve dinner first (and this place is best known for their, yes you guessed it "pocket sandwiches" i.e.. pitas). So I ordered the pocket sandwich with turkey that was quite good (and relatively inexpensive) and followed it up with this really yummy apple dessert ala mode with caramel. Anyone who knows me knows one of my favorite desserts is apple pie with ice cream and caramel and this dessert was pretty much that.

Anyhow, we all ate dinner then the popcorn comes out. They deliver little trays full of popcorn for every two people for throwing at the stage, each other, complete strangers, etc etc. Of course you can always buy as much as you want in addition to that. :-) And yes they have RULES for popcorn etiquette. no dirty corn, no corn that's been on the floor, no corn is anything but clean and dry. So of course, this was the perfect opportunity for our inner children to come out and play. We were screaming yelling, throwing popcorn like mad at everyone and their mother. And this all before the actual play even started.

Then the show starts, Phantom of the Opera, and it is absolutely hilarious! All the actors go over and above board, except the one who delivered every single line totally deadpanned and straight faced, which made it all the funnier in the midst of hilarity from everyone else.

Totally cheesy, totally corny (no this pun was not intentional. LOL I just caught it as I was editing before mailing), totally silly, and one of the best evenings I've had in a long time. A big group of friends and a few new acquaintances, relatively inexpensive, and a laugh riot. Heck it was even more amusing to see all of us dropping popcorn out of our clothing and hair as we trekked out to our cars.

I am SO going back to this place again in the near future!

My brother and sister would totally get a kick out of this. (Yes dear siblings of mine, if you ever find time and finances in your busy schedules to come visit me we are definitely going here!)


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Saturday, April 22, 2006

Happy Earth Day!

Just wanted to say Happy Earth Day everyone! What did YOU do to respect, protect and celebrate Mother Earth today?

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

CK2S Kwips and Kritiques website updated

APRIL 2006

***We had 5 new reviewers join our team this month

***We have several new reviews posted that CK2S K2 hopes you'll take the time to read.

*** Check out our interviews page to find a link to our interview with Holly Jacobs. 

***We have a few new banners on our Links page. If you are not on the page and would like to be, please send your banner to Kelley and she will get it posted.

***Please visit our News from the Web page to find out the latest happenings in the romance world.

***Authors, are you interested in having your books reviewed here? If so please send requests to

We are looking for a few more dedicated members to join our staff. Some review experience is appreciated but not required. If you are interested in joining our staff, please submit a sample review to We will read it and get back to you as soon as we can.


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Now open! CK2S Kwips and Kritiques


Sunday, April 16, 2006

I just LOVE Spring!

That is the most wonderful time of year for me! Everything is new and fresh and waking up from its long winter sleep! I can't think of any other time of year that is such a beautiful time of rebirth and renewal with little miracles every day. Such a reminder of a greater power than ourselves.

How can anyone NOT love spring? The blue bonnets are brilliantly poking up all over the place and along the highways, as are so many other types of wild flowers. Everything is fresh and green and even smells clean. And the GREEN! I always forget just how many millions of shades of green there are until all the trees start unfurling their new leaves and flowers pop up everywhere amid leaves of green ranging from bright jade green to grass green to pale yellow green.

When the wind blows right you just inhale the scents of so many kinds of flowers intermingled together that can never be recreated. Every year is different, but every year is the same too. Some years spring greets us earlier in the year, others it comes late, but we never have to doubt that it WILL come.

I guess that is why I love Easter so much. There is no better holiday for representing renewal of all things good and wonderful then Easter in the spring. We are reminded by looking out the window of the miracle of life and love. And sacrifice even. We spend hours tending to our flowers trying to make them even more perfect, sacrificing our free time to tend to new life. And then of course Easter itself representing the greatest sacrifice of all and the most amazing symbol of new life we can ever experience.

The only thing I can even imagine coming close to this feeling is a mother giving birth and seeing her newborn baby for the first time.

How can anyone not appreciate this time of year for the fabulous thing it is?

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The Cat that loved chocolate brownies...

and cheetos

Let me tell you a story....

Last Sunday was the big Sadie Hawkins event for IBC Thrive and the women were treating the guys to a baseball game, homemade lunches and baked goods, as well as some refreshments at the game.

Saturday was the day we got together to make up all the lunches and baked good bags for the guys. Well the girls came through big time and we had TONS of baked goods left over that we all took home. I had a whole bunch of individually bagged brownies in a bigger shopping bag that I brought home. I also brought home some of the left over snack packs of chips. Well we had another Thrive event that evening so when I got home from making the lunches I had about two hours to finish up the last minute preparations I was responsible for on Sunday and then I had to run out for the next event.

So stupid me, I left the shopping bag on the couch with the Ziploc bags of brownies in it figuring they'd be fine until I got home that night to put them away. After all, all the bags were sealed so wouldn't attract bugs or anything in the few hours I would be gone gone. And the individual chips bags were in the shopping bag also.

Well I wasn't counting on my sweet little Amun who sometimes is a little demon-cat. LOL But I still love him.

I got home Saturday night about 11 or so and what do I find? All the Ziploc bags are chewed through in the shopping bag and brownie crumbs all on the inside of the shopping bag. And one of the bags of cheetos chewed open and GONE! yes all gone! And how did I know Amun was the culprit? Well he was still IN the shopping bag surrounded by chocolate crumbs and his face stuffed inside the empty cheetos bag licking the inside of the bag clean!

Never in a million years would I have expected that my CAT would have a bigger sweet tooth than I do and would have a passion for cheetos as well. So all those yummy home made brownies (I had eaten one before I left Sat evening so I KNOW they were good.) were nibbled on my my evil little fur ball!! And I had to throw ALL of them away. I love my cats dearly, they are my "children," but I do not care to share my food with them, especially after they've gone to town on it!

Bright side? He's most definitely MY cat loving chocolate like he does and as much as I do. So I guess I couldn't have picked a more perfect cat personality wise. Or rather he picked me since it was him curling up on my shoulder and immediately starting to purr away when his brothers weren't interested that made me bring him home.

I love my little guy but from now on? All chocolate and cheetos are getting stashed somewhere HE can't get to them! Which means the fridge since he even knows how to open the cabinets.


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Which Gargoyle Are You?

Which Gargoyle are you?

What Sci Fi Character Are You?

Princess Leia

A strong-willed herald of causes against injustice, you passionately strive to right the wrongs around you.

Somebody has to save our skins!

Leia is a character in the Star Wars universe. See her character entry at the Star Wars Databank for more information.

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

What Celtic Goddess Are You?

What Celtic Goddess are You? (With pictures)

Epona is the wise and humble Goddess of horses. She enlightened fools, and aided those in need. You have a sweet persona, but that dosent mean you're innocent. If you see one being unjustly persecuted, you're there to help.
Take this


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What Is Your Vampire Name?

What is your Vampire name?

Adritha is your Vampire name.You are stunning to look at and to talk to. No other type of Vampire has your creativity.To use your new Vampire name and become a Vampire, go here:
Take this


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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Woo Hoo! I passed!

Some of you will remember several weeks ago when I was off taking the prep course and certification exam for work that I really wanted. Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM) is something I've wanted for a while but never did anything about until this year. The class was REALLY hard and I actually failed the exam for the class itself, by only 6 points! That wasn't the exam that counted though.

Well I got home from work a few minutes ago and when I got my mail there was the dreaded yet eagerly anticipated envelope from the certifying agency. It was slightly think, which is usually a good thing. So I nervously opened it up.

First thing I see? Congratulations! YAY!!! Woo hoo! I passed the exam! I don't know what my score was since they don't tell you, but I know I passed! Now I need to read and sign the code of ethics and pay my annual dues and I'm officially a member!

I'm so excited! I was really worried about this since I wanted it so badly and the exam was so difficult. Now I have one thing less to be worrying about. Thank God!

They did spell my name wrong, which I have asked three times to have corrected, but it looks like I'll have to do that again. That's nothing though and shouldn't take too long to get fixed.

my worst travel experience in a long time!

I guess it probably makes the top 3 of bad travel experiences I've had.

I already went in to the details of swing dance night and I mentioned I had to leave the next day to go to Denver. I was heading out there for the week for a big convention for work. My flight was supposed to leave DFW around 12:15 and I was supposed to get in to Denver about 2:15, Denver time. well this trip was just bad from the start! Weather was bad in Dallas with miserable rain and cold in the morning but we were still supposed to be able to take off on time. We boarded, headed out to the runway, and found we had to wait a while for our turn to take off. While out there, we had a medical emergency and had to go back to the gate to let the person off the plane for medical attention.

Of course that meant we lost our place in line and had to start all over again. Then we found while on our second waiting that Denver weather was pretty bad and we may have to fly in a different route. While waiting, the flight attendants gave out glasses of water to everyone who wanted one since it had already been about two hours since we were supposed to take off. Then, we had a SECOND medical emergency and had to head back to the gate to let the person off the plane. I've never been on a plane where there was a medical emergency before and it figures my first time we'd have two of them!

So we head back to the gate, release the sick passenger, had the water supplies replenished since we finished it all up, and had to refuel since we got word we were flying by a different route to Denver. About this time, storms got REALLY bad in Dallas with microbursts and everything so all flights were grounded till the storms let up.

Finally after all this we got to take off. I forget what time it was now, but It was either 5:30 or 6:30, several hours after we were supposed to have landed in Denver! When the flight finally took off, the entire body of passengers started cheering and clapping, myself included.

So you think that's it? That it got better after that? NOPE!

We finally got to Denver about 830 or so I think it was and I go to collect my luggage. guess what, one of my bags is missing! So I go to file a claim and am told to wait a little longer since their records show it did make it off the plane so it was there somewhere. they set to wait 10 more minutes. I waited 15 and still no bag. Fortunately, it was just my tote bag, so I at least had my clothing. I go and they let me file the claim this time.

Then I'm off to catch a shuttle since I didn't get a rental. And what do I find But the shuttle is sold out and has been for two or three hours! So I asked for an alternative and what do they tell me? "Oh just go outside and wait, some other shuttles will show up at some point." WTF?!? Fortunately I get out there and there is a guy with a shuttle and he has ONE seat left, so I snag it and the 45 minute drive to the hotel starts. Finally got to the hotel about 9:00 Denver time, called home to let Mom and Dad know I finally made it. (I had called them from the plane in Dallas to tell them what was going on.)

I unpacked what I could and by this point am SOOO hungry since all I had had to eat since 10:30 in the morning was a granola bar they gave me on the plane. So I called room service and finally got to eat dinner about 11:00 at night. I was so exhausted and worn out and stressed over all this that Monday morning I went over to the convention long enough to register, then came back to the hotel to take a nap for a few hours. Went back to the conference around noon or so on Monday. The real bulk of it wasn't to start till Tuesday anyhow, which I didn't realize when I made my flight arrangements initially.

And this rounds out the top three worst travel experiences of my life. ;-) The other two? ~~ Arriving in Rome Italy at the beginning of a 10 day trip to find my suitcase wasn't there. I had to wear the same clothes for three days until my luggage caught up with is!
~~ Flying to Chicago for a three hour meeting which turned into an 18 hour day due to bad weather, cancelled flights and then some which caused some of the folks to never even make the meeting.

Now I'm almost caught up on activities to talk about in here. I only owe a rundown of Phantom of the Opera last weekend. :-)


Swing Dancing last month

yes I'm long overdue with the promised stories. So here we go, as much as I can remember anyhow.

For me it was something of an extra birthday celebration since my birthday had been just a couple days before we all went out. I had had a very busy day that day, running around all morning, DFW tea in the afternoon and swing dancing that night. I also ate SO much food between everything. I was rushed getting to swing dancing because I got home all of 10 minutes before I had to turn around a leave again. Long enough to comb my hair, touch up the makeup, give the "kids" a few minutes each of undivided attention, then off and running again.

We all met up at IBC in the Commons area to carpool downtown. Before dancing we went to dinner at Pei Wei, a good oriental food restaurant. I didn't order too much food since I had eaten so much at tea and was not going to be able to take left overs home because I was on my way to Denver the next day. So I ordered some edamame that I shared with folks and some fried rice. Finished the edamame but barely touched the rice.

After dinner we headed off to the swing dance event. We got there a little bit before 8 and waited for them to open the ball room doors. There was a lesson from 8 to 9 and I took the class since it's been three years since I last went dancing. Turns out I remembered quite a bit more than I would have expected after no practice for so long. So I took the class, helped some of my fellow Thrivers get the basics down and all that.

The actual dance started around 9 and we were there the whole time. I guess about 20 or so people went all together so it was a good turn out. I had a blast dancing the night away. Danced with many of the guys form our group and some of the other folks who were there. No flips and not many dips, but lots of spins and turns and some of the more complicated moves. About halfway through the night they did the birthday ring (Swing City always used to do this too.) Rod, one of the guys form our group dragged me out to the center of the ring even though I wasn't going to participate in that part of the evening. but once I was in the center of the ring, there was no getting out of it. The whole dance worked just like it always did at Swing city did. they played a good long song and it was rotating partners. Someone would come out dance with the birthday folks (there were a few of us) for a short while then another person came in to the center from the ring and stole the birthday guy or girl. I was worn out after that dance! I think I danced with more people in those few minutes than I did all evening long!

We had some very good dancers in our group, who knew all kinds of fancy stuff that had learned from two stepping. Two step and basic swing steps are very similar so the different moves are very interchangeable between the two styles of dance.

all in all it was a great night of dancing and after it was over we headed to Denny's for a late night snack. Some of us got desserts, some got breakfasts, and I ordered an appetizer platter since by now I was very hungry again. While at the restaurant, we came up with the idea to do a demo in Thrive Sunday morning to show people who didn't come what they missed and to try to drum up interest for the next dance night. So Sunday morning in class we had two pairs, of which I was a part of one of them to demonstrate Swing dancing. Then we jumped into a spur of the moment salsa demo (which I really just did the cha cha since I don't know salsa) since our next dance outing is going to be salsa dancing.

And that was my dance night. I realized how much I miss my dancing and I'm all the more determined now to find a group here I can join. Lucky for me, one of the Thrivers is a member of the Dallas swing Dance Society and told me how I can go about joining if I want to. I haven't yet just because I'm so darn busy lately but I am certainly going to look in to it!


Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Birthplace:Pittsburgh, PA
Current Location:DFW, TX
Eye Color:Hazel
Hair Color:Red blonde
Right Handed or Left Handed:Right
Your Heritage:Caucasian but am a "Heinz 57"
The Shoes You Wore Today:Bass suede sandals
Your Weakness:which one?
Your Perfect Pizza:mushrooms, garlic, minimal cheese, lots of sauce
Goal You Would Like To Achieve This Year:again, which one? I got many. LOL
Thoughts First Waking Up:Do I have to get up already?
Your Best Physical Feature:eyes
Your Bedtime:whenever I get there, usually after 11
Your Most Missed Memory:Lordy I couldn't even begin to pick one
Pepsi or Coke:DIET Coke... with lime please
MacDonalds or Burger King:BK baby
Single or Group Dates:single
Lipton Ice Tea or Nestea:lipton
Chocolate or Vanilla:both
Cappuccino or Coffee:cappucino
Do you Smoke:heck no!
Do you Swear:more than I should... the joys of working for the military, picked up the bad habit
Do you Sing:who doesn't? Oh you mean do I sing well? not on your life!
Do you Shower Daily:duh
Have you Been in Love:several times
Do you want to go to College:been there done that got the certificate which I don't even use in my everyday life
Do you want to get Married:someday
Do you belive in yourself:yes
Do you get Motion Sickness:I never used to but now sometimes in the car. always have on boats
Do you think you are Attractive:passable
Are you a Health Freak:yeah right! have you seen me lately?
Do you get along with your Parents:yes
Do you like Thunderstorms:yes
Do you play an Instrument:no
In the past month have you Drank Alcohol:yes - two margaritas a couple weeks ago and that's all actually. LOL
In the past month have you Smoked:heck no!
In the past month have you gone on a Date:um... no
In the past month have you gone to a Mall:duh... the book store is there
In the past month have you eaten Sushi:yes, multiple times
In the past month have you been on Stage:nope. I was up in front of my class one weekend doing a dance demo though
In the past month have you been Dumped:no. you have to be dating someone for that
In the past month have you gone Skinny Dipping:no
In the past month have you Stolen Anything:heck no!
Ever been Drunk:yes
Ever been called a Tease:no
Ever been Beaten up:not unless you count fisticuffs with the siblings in the past
Ever Shoplifted:no
How do you want to Die:old and happy and after living a full life
What do you want to be when you Grow Up:i'll let you know when I figure that one out...
What country would you most like to Visit:Australia
In a Boy/Girl..
Favourite Eye Color:blue
Favourite Hair Color:brown
Short or Long Hair:depends on the person
Number of CDs I own:too many to count
Number of Piercings:none anymore. My body doesn't like having foreign metal objects forced through it
Number of Tattoos:two