Monday, September 29, 2008

The ups and downs of spray tanning

So, I decided to go get a spray tan tonight after work. Cat's wedding is coming up this weekend, and since I'll be wearing a black bridesmaid dress, I wanted to bring a little color into my pasty skin. My previous experiences with spray tan have not been good. A couple years ago I tried the Mystic Tan device (twice) to disastrous results - I looked like an Oompa Loompa for several days. Apparently the tanning components do not produce a natural reaction with my skin tone. Also, the experience was scary. You stand in this capsule, press the button, and it closes around you - then an electronic countdown gives you barely enough time to take a deep breath before you are vaporized by this strong smelling, foul tasting spray. (I guess you are supposed to hold your breath since it only takes about a minute, but invariably I would panic and take a big gulping breath, allowing the toxic tasting spray to coat the inside of my mouth). After my first Mystic experience, I for some reason thought the color was not too bad, so a few weeks later I did it again. (Later I saw pictures of myself and realized that it did not, in fact, look good). I didn't enjoy my second time any more than the first - it was actually even WORSE becuase I knew what was coming. For some reason the idea of being trapped inside that booth terrified me, and again I gulped a mouthful of tanning spray. Needless to say, I decided that my Mystic tanning days were over. A couple years passed...and now they have a new device - the VersaSpa. I'd heard that it is geared towards different skin tones, and people who looked orange-y with Mystic were impressed with the natural coloration in Versa. So, I decided to try it. And....I was pleasantly surprised. The best thing about it is that the booth is open, so there is less claustrophobia and more fresh air. Also, you can pick your grade of tanning - bronzer or clear (clear), and light, medium or dark (medium). Even though I was initially feeling panicky, it was actually quick and easy. And, I managed to get a nice even tan that looks natural, not orange. The only mishap came when I tried to put on the shower cap to cover my hair before the session started. I grabbed accap out of the bin and tried to squeeze it onto my head. It would not fit. I tried it at a different angle, but it still would not fit. I eventually forced it onto my head, thinking that either it was a toddler-sized shower cap or I have a gigantic head. Turns out, neither. The "shower cap" was actually one of the disposable foot booties that you can wear if you're worried about your feet/toenails getting too dark!!!!! No wonder I could not fit the thing over my entire head (and hair) goes on your FOOT!! Anyway, I figure if that is the worst thing that happened, I am doing well - VersaSpa is a success!!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bella's Bad Behavior

Animals are a lot smarter than people give them credit for...our cat Bella is a great example of this. Every night, she sleeps at the foot of our bed, and every morning between 6:00 - 7:00 she tries to get us out of bed by meowing incessantly. I don't know why she has decided that this is the perfect time to get up, no matter what day of the week it is or how much/little sleep we got that night. Most of the time, we are not quite ready to get up at 6:00 a.m. - OK, we are NEVER ready to get up that early - so we take turns getting up and locking her in the other half of the house (extra bedroom, TV room and office). That's where her food/water and cat tree perch are, so she usually settles back down and goes to sleep until we actually do get up and let her out. Lately her methods have been evolving in her quest to get us up early, and this is why I say that animals are quite clever. When we first moved into the house, she would jump onto bed with us (usually with a toy like her fuzzy mice or a hair elastic stolen from the bathroom) and meow in our faces. It was easy to just grab her and take her to "her room" for the rest of the night. Then, several months later, she started sitting in the doorway or at the foot of the bed to meow. So then we would get out of bed, grab her and put her up. WELL, she figured out quickly that every time we got out of bed to come to her, it wasn't to praise/pet/play with her, so she began sitting outside the bedroom doorway and meowing until we got up to come find her. She would make sure that we saw her as we came around the corner before taking off running down the hall, where she would either hide behind the couch or under the dining room table. I guess she thought that if she could keep us at bay for longer, we might just give up stay awake with her for good. She quickly realized that it was still pretty easy for us to reach under the table or behind the couch, so now she has figured out the BEST morning wake-up routine. What she has recently started doing is positioning herself UNDERNEATH our bed in the very center where neither of us can reach and then meowing as we stumble around in the dark and try to figure out where she is. She did this to me a few days ago, and when I could not find her after looking in all the rooms, I went back to bed. She waited about 10 minutes and then started up with the meowing again from under the bed!!!! So now when she does this, I have to go sit on the living room couch until she decides that maybe I actually did get up, at which point she saunters in to say good morning and I grab her and send her to her room!! I just have to wonder...what will she come up with next??

Monday, September 15, 2008

What is wrong with Richard Simmons?

I am not kidding...what in the world is WRONG with this guy? OK, we all know he is silly, but his appearance on David Letterman tonight was beyond anything I can describe!! Did anyone else see this? I mean, he has to be on drugs, right?! In his 5minute segment, he (while wearing a red feathered tank top and his signature striped shorts) sang ABBA songs from Mamma Mia, bounced around stage and stood on the sofa, and grinned at the camera in a great impression of a manic chipmunk. I honestly think Letterman was a bit frightened...and who could blame him? I mean, Richard Simmons is AWESOME to watch on TV (in a horribly awkward way), but you honestly have to wonder about the kind of people who go on his get-fit self-help cruises...who actually wants to encounter this man in person, much less be stuck on a boat with him for a week?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Kauai here we come!

This weekend Jeff and I booked a Christmas vacation to Kauai! Our good friend Mike Morath has access to some excellent condos in Princeville, and his parents have an amazing home on the island as well. He was nice enough to invite us to stay for a while, and of course we can't wait to check out the beautiful island - hiking, kayaking, beaches...all the stuff we love! It should be awesome, and we are so excited!

Since this is our first year of holidays as a married couple, it takes some planning to coordinate visits to both families. Luckily, Tyler is only a 2 hour drive, so the Jones family is never too far away! So we will probably spend Thanksgiving out there and then do a Christmas visit in Tyler as well the weekend before actual Christmas. Our planning is also working out perfectly so that we get to have a Prudhomme family Christmas in Hawaii - Jeff's parents will be on Oahu visiting Mike and Amy (brother and sister-in-law) and their NEW BABY at that time. So, we'll be flying into Honolulu first to visit the Prudhommes and then later to Kauai to visit Mike Morath.

Now the mission is to get into great shape again before then...wish us luck!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


I think there is some kind of screw loose in my brain...

My mind sometimes poses questions to itself on the most random topics – they usually catch me off guard by coming to me at inexplicable times, like there is someone else in my head thinking of these ideas and springing them on me unexpectedly. Like today, I thought – “I wonder what would happen if I was forced to only breathe through a straw? How long would it be before I freaked out? Would I eventually die? It would probably be better if the straw was hard plastic, like the kind in a thermos, rather than soft plastic because the soft plastic could eventually cave in on itself or even disintegrate.” I am not sure when or if this random musing will ever be of any use to me – perhaps if I get trapped in an aquarium with only a few inches of air at the top (so likely).

Does anyone else ever think of weird stuff like this? Maybe it’s just a sign that I have too much time on my hands….but to that I can only thumb my nose at the abysmal job market.

Book Update

OK, so I finished The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. I am not going to give anything away in case anyone else wants to read it (let me know if you want to borrow my copy). It is beautifully written - the author obviously missed his calling (he was a software engineer for most of his life until publishing his first book, which is this one). I was surprised by the way it ended - anyone looking for a happy go-lucky, everything turns out perfectly type of ending will be disappointed. Once I picked it up, I couldn't put it down - I read it during breakfast and lunch, and then while I was riding my spin bike in the guest house! It is not the straightforward boy-and-his-dog story I expected - there are some elements of the supernatural thrown in and it's also very suspenseful. I came out of reading it a bit confused - on one hand, I was angry at the resolution of the conflict, but on the other, I couldn't deny that it is a great book! Read it for yourself to find out what I mean.

Also, I quickly read a fun little book about the secret life of children in Manhattan private schools. It's called "Schooled" by Anisha Lakhani. The basic gist is that the rich parents pay Ivy-league educated "tutors" to complete their children's homework, essays, reports, projects, etc for them so that they get better grades. The lady who wrote it is an ex-teacher/tutor from an elite private school. It is a hilarious, if disturbing, view into a world that seems totally unfathomable to me. For some reason I get immense pleasure out of books like this - others I've read include Prep and Nanny Diaries. I think I love it because even though some things seem absurd, the fact that these things actually happen makes it even more absurd. I definitely recommend it as a fun and mindless read!