Friday, January 30, 2015

Week 32 - Cheerios, I love you!

Yes, here is another offering from the early/love letter days of the CONTEST

Cheerio Cheerios!

I was not a big fan of sweets when I was a kid. Yes, that should have been the first sign that there might have been a problem with me. Luckily, Cheerios were there to greet me with their bright yellow box and simply delicious toasted oat rings every morning. One of the perks that my six-year old self was aware of was the fact that taking a sip of orange juice after a mouthful of your cereal was not an unpleasant experience like it was with super sweet cereals. On the days when I was looking for a little pizzazz, I had the option to sprinkle a small regulated amount of sugar in my bowl, or sometimes I got lucky and sliced bananas were available.

The year was 1979, and I remember dragging my sleepy-eyed, ten-year old self to the breakfast table at my grandparents' house, only to find a suspiciously familiar, yet different box in front of me. Honey Nut Cheerios? What was that bee doing, and where was my usual? As a kid who did not like change, I experienced some initial panic at the thought that my bright yellow box had been replaced. I was assured that there was just a new variety available. I wanted to like them. I really wanted to, but remained a creature of habit.

I remember sitting around one evening, chatting with my sister, cramming mouthfuls of Frosted Cheerios in our faces. My father walked in and pondered why we weren't eating regular snack food. We really had no interest in chips or pretzels, as we were loving the treat.

Flash forward to the years of my own small children sitting in their high chairs with that first solid food feast of a tray covered in little o's. The smell of Cheerios slowly took over that baby smell. They rolled and traveled to the floor, under the couch cushions, the car seats...everywhere. We were never without a snack, and always had enough to share with new friends as the universal toddler treat.

Now that I am older (as in older than my thirties, but not older than dirt yet), and have been told to watch my cholesterol, I am still reaching for the bright yellow Cheerios box. They are as good as ever plain, or dressed up a little with some berries. As a matter of fact, I am eating a bowl of Cheerios as a snack while I type. Yes, just a bowl of plain dry Cheerios. I fling a few to the dog every now and then. We use them as treats for our small dog whenever he comes inside, or looks particularly pathetic. The vet is impressed that he is not overweight, as is often a problem in small dogs. We decided using Cheerios for snacks has helped. He is currently taking some medication, so I just put half of his pill right through the center of the o, and all is good.

Anyway, I admit to wondering if my beloved cereal was suffering from an identity crisis over the past decade. I also admit to a brief obsession with Team Cheerios. The red and blue box made me really feel like I was trying new things. The Multi-grain Cheerios? I could sit down and eat an entire box by the handful. Yes, that is the problem I currently have-no ability to stop eating Cheerios. I was at a friend's house when I tried the peanut butter ones, but was pretty sure she did not intend for me to sit down and devour the whole box. It took a lot of will power for me to just smile, with my mouth stuffed, and nod agreement to the notion of them being delicious.

I would like to mention that I think the summer commercial with the little girl pouring Cheerios on her father to "help his heart" was adorable. It was a fun look at how a child's mind works, as well as how trusted and recognizable the cereal is. Those were my thoughts when I saw the commercial. While I have truly grown to appreciate the diverse variety that Cheerios provides to the shelf in our pantry, I am impressed by their respect for diversity as well.

My husband is a coupon cutting lunatic, and of course Honey Nut is his favorite variety. Luckily, he does think of me and uses his multi box discount buying power to indulge my multi-grain and plain wants. I have also been joyously ripping those box tops off for over twelve years now, and have found a new crop of elementary school children to share them with.

This writing has made me hungry, so I think it must be time to try mixing up a bowl of Dark Chocolate mixed with Peanut Butter Cheerios. That will be my dry munching snack of choice this evening. Still finding cereal in the couch cushions after all these years!

The One and Only,
Blogger at Maybe It’s Just Me

Was my unsinkable love for those floatation device shaped cereal pieces returned? Well, I might have made a tactical error in sending my letter amidst what I am sure was a ton of mail related to a certain ad campaign. It seems that my opinion on the commercial was the main focus of my letter…or could possibly have been the only part that was read, because gosh that was a lengthy piece of literature.
Just curious, do you think if I had located this picture of my daughter from 2001 sooner, and included it with my letter, the response would have been more overwhelming?

I will gladly take my one point, as I continue to crawl my way to the finish line. I wonder where the finish line is anyway?

Current total 66 POINTS!

Check out the competition's recent post, I saw the title and thought there'd been a contest-related scandal!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015


The sun played a nasty trick on me just a little while ago. It was all shiny and stuff, so I could think of no good excuse to not go for a walk. I was fresh on the heels of a pancake brunch that was seriously threatening to glue me to the couch. The battery on my pedometer was a bit unpredictable yesterday, but after confirming that I did have steps registering, I threw on a few more layers and headed out. The sun was shining! What was the point in checking the temperature, as I am not sure what the magic number for a change of plans would have been. Suffice to say, I now have some idea. It was cold out you guys! Not like "duh, it's winter" cold, more like "this is why you own a balaclava" (and why the hell didn't you wear it) cold. I trucked along figuring I just needed to get more blood pumping. Twenty-four minutes later, I checked the weather report when I got back inside to find that the windchill was -2.

Speaking of things that make me feel all warm and fuzzy...Yesterday, at my daughter's school, a ninth grade girl hit another girl in the head with a hammer. Initial reports were that she had brought the hammer from home, and that premeditation piece was rather disturbing. Later it was said that she had actually gone to one of the tech rooms and grabbed the hammer, and that level of planning was no less disturbing. I am not sure what we are to expect the school to do to insure that such a scary ass thing does not happen again in the future, because who the hell thought this was a possible scenario? This girl is also said to be the same child who slammed a girl's head against the ground a couple of years ago back in middle school...with her mother's permission. I vaguely recall that story, but no explanation of why such permission was sought, let alone granted, let alone whether any of that would have made a difference.

Hmmm...that last bit doesn't really segue easily into any other bits of random. I'll just skip a few lines and give us each a second to regroup...

I have created a monster by passing on my collector genes to my son. Back in 2012, I gave the first glimpse into a few of our collections and the quests associated with them. We are on the thirteenth series of Lego minifigures, but my son has taken on his own journey into madness by seeking out certain amiibos for the WiiU. If you don't know what they are, consider yourself lucky. I am trying really hard to let him conduct this search solo, but admit to stopping by four stores on his behalf last Friday. (In my defense, I was passing all four stores anyway. Really, I was.) The obsession grew to ebay, more than initial selling price levels. I cannot pretend I don't understand how or why this is happening.

Don't I have any photos this week? Sheesh! Oh, I tried to get one of Fozzie this morning when he found himself a little chilly out in the yard, just sitting there like a meerkat with both front feet in the air. Somehow the sight of the camera gave him enough power to get himself back to the house.

Aha! Luckily I saw this sand trap while we were cross-country skiing on a golf course before I landed in it!
Aaand, evidence that I cooked something following a recipe that required more than adding water to the contents of a box! Meet my new friends leek, swiss chard and purple potato.

Well that appears to be all of the random I can gather for this week. Plus, my fingers are getting very cold typing!

Note: When I googled balaclava to make sure I spelled it correctly, one popped up from Dolce & Gabbana for $1,622.50…granted it is embellished.

Stacy Uncorked

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Superhero Sunday - My lesson

I arrived a little early for speech class, so I had to wait in the lobby at school. My stomach was in knots and trying to decide in which direction it wanted to vacate. Suddenly there was a swarm of activity and I had to steady my footing as to not be swept away by the only vaguely familiar wave of faces. Some of the language flying through the air was a bit harsh, but not terribly offensive. I was trying to mind my own business, while also staying tuned to all of the dialogues and scanning the crowd.

There she was...slumped down against the wall, crying, surrounded by six of her closest friends. They seemed to have the situation under control, provided hugs were going to fix things. I knew better than to insert myself into the situation, but it was still tempting. A security guard walked too close to the scene and attempts were made to lure him in. I was not surprised to hear that the catalyst for this drama was related to something her boyfriend had done, but unfortunately I couldn't make out the rest of the story. The security guard was backing away quietly, so I figured we could all relax, or at least all one of me who seemed interested to begin with.

Time rescued me from one storyline and propelled me quickly into another as I arrived in class. "I hope my slides saved to the flash drive." My gosh, what was the alternative? The pounding of my heart began to be palpable and then grew even faster and harder. I gripped the edges of my desk and focused on the posted handwritten schedule where my last name appeared. It was time. Thankfully the computer projected a familiar face up on the screen. One more deep breath, as I hoped I would not pass out…exhale, and it began...
Apparently for some, including my son, a cape is not necessary. This may have been the confirmation I needed that it was finally time to stop projecting my fears and insecurities onto my children…even in the quietest moments, surrounded by my hidden candy stashes.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Week 31 - Still having fun!

It is kind of strange marking the passage of time, in one week increments, with this contest. Thirty-one weeks (give or take a week or two for laziness and other issues) into one year already. Got any teenagers in your house? If so, this letter might be near and dear to your heart as well...


Teenage boys are stinky, but it was also brought to my attention, in a not so subtle manner, that teenage girls brew up their own brand of smelliness. Our hampers and home breathed a sigh of fresh relief after trying your clinical strength sport scented product. The girl in question swears that scent works better, even though she only tried one other, and I feel it is safer to just believe her. I put the box on the vanity and step away.

At first it was a big step getting used to the price difference between clinical strength and regular strength Secret anti-perspirants. I reflected back to my own teenage years, spent wearing very dark or very light clothes that were less likely to display enormous wet underarm circles, and quickly threw a box in the shopping cart. Plus, when I considered the alternative, with regard to the deodorant’s powers, I gladly threw in another box.

The packaging of your product makes it easier to hand to my teenage daughter as well. The fearlessly fresh scent boasting that “mean stinks” with its hip doodles, the sporty girl and the note that the products help with stress sweat are inviting, help to remove any stigma one might feel about their sweaty, smelly armpits. It’s all cool and okay! Clinical doesn’t always have to be scary and old lady mom like.

Your Secret is safe with us,
Mother of a teenage girl and blogger

Did they get my subtle hints that coupons would be super swell?
Apparently I was too subtle (and secretive)! Most of the other companies seem to have grabbed on to one mere morsel of an issue, but Megan did not concern herself with my reference to the price of this product. I had to laugh when I also later found out that there is actually a loyalty program in which four UPC codes will get you a free deodorant, as that was not mentioned either. Hey, one point for the response though!

64 + 1 = 65 TOTAL POINTS

There is a chance that Marianne is still recovering from all of her family bonding time last weekend, fingers crossed that she's still sharing some love!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Are you randomly certain?

It just doesn't feel like a Tuesday. I did my usual Tuesday things, but the random thoughts have yet to wash over me. The monkey in the field did send a link to the fancy fresh adult toys that Groupon sent her an email about. I am opting out of posting that one. Although it seems my other online options are to continue reading horrible and tragic stories, or drive myself crazy looking for new office furniture. Sometimes it isn't so much a matter of having nothing to say, but rather such an overabundance of topics that you just can't sift through. I suppose I could tackle something on the project list.
In case you were wondering, Fozzie has no interest in helping.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Week 30 - Still chugging along!

I just dusted off my folder of letters and responses, and picked one that can hopefully help me claw my way to victory in this thing…slow and steady wins the race?

The photograph included with this letter will come as no surprise to those of you who are frequent visitors. Without further ado, let's get some Quazy Quisp!

Dear Quaker Oats,

I realize that to the indiscriminating eye this photo of our cereal shelf look adequate. 
Some may even say that we have an overabundance of offerings, considering that only two out of the four people who live in our house reach for any of these boxes regularly. However, my husband and I each know something is missing.

My husband sits down next to me on the couch every night with a bowl of vitamin and mineral fortified goodness. Every now and then I see his gaze shift off into the distance, and I know where his thoughts have turned to…Quisp cereal. There have only been a couple of occasions in our travels when I have had the opportunity to see the glimmer in his eyes when spotting a box of Quisp on the grocery store shelf. I just confirmed via your online store locator that there is no Quisp available at grocery stores within fifty miles of us. Hopes dashed, fears realized, and disappointment in no quazy energy sinking in.

Now as for myself, I long for the Crunchy Corn Bran. I have seen it here and there at times over the past fifteen years. My step-father and I used to report our sightings to each other, until they sort of faded out. Apparently Target is where we can find those golden yellow boxes. I have to admit that there are a lot of things at Target that distract me from their grocery section, but I will be sure to check the next time I am there.

For now the Quaker is hanging out in our pantry on the boxes of Life, but he is lonely and wants more company. Milk, spoons and bowls at the ready!

Quispy and crunchy,

Blogger at Maybe It’s Just Me

Did they take pity on our Quisp-deficient souls? Certainly they'd send at least one box, right? Wrong! Roberto sent me this fine letter confirming that we were basically out of luck.
He did also include a shiny coupon, that of course I cannot find my picture of. It was basically for any product that fell under the giant Pepsico umbrella, except for cereal. It seemed to add a little bit of insult to injury, as Roberto had clearly given up hope for our Quisp plight. Within a week of receiving the letter, however, my husband took matters into his own hands and merely wandered into a different nearby grocery store and found…AN ENTIRE ENDCAP DISPLAY OF QUISP! His look of satisfaction made it difficult to reprimand him for not gathering photographic evidence.

I could probably take 25 points for magically having Quisp appear on a local grocery store shelf, but I will just take my two points for the shiny coupon. 


Check in to see who the competition is loving this week!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Just a little random

Greetings from the balmy tropics of our garage...
…yes, that means it was even colder outside this morning! I know a lot of you are experiencing the same bit of frostiness -hooray us! My daughter and I just read in a magazine that people should lower their thermostats at night because sleeping in temperatures under sixty-six degrees can promote weight loss. We both laughed because our house isn't set as high as sixty-six even during the day. Maybe it's the shivering that burns calories.

Fozzie wants your sympathy for the disruption this bitter cold has caused to his neighborhood walking routine.
I am trying to explain to him that nobody is going to take pity on his fleece blanket bundled, head on a monogrammed flannel pillow, furry self.

Did you know you could order things in "eaches"?
How many "eaches" are in a "some" I wonder?

I do not want to name names, but somebody gave me some storage containers the other day that had been cleaned out of a cupboard. I admit that I was happy to see the top and bottom of one that is not pictured, but we all pretty much cracked up at this useful assortment.
Seven lids and one bottom that none of those lids fit. The main problem? You know I am having a hard time throwing any of them away for fear that their mates will somehow appear in the next bag I get. Although this might be even just a little too random of a selection for me!

Stacy is still hosting and rocking the random! Thanks, Stacy!
Stacy Uncorked

Monday, January 12, 2015


I was doing some reading over at my friend Kirby's place. She is hip and happening, and in addition to being a more than capable DIY lady, she is also very cape-able! Oh yes, we went there...
On New Year's Day she posted her words for this year (that link up there will show them to you), and asked for ours. Last year I just sort of glommed on to her word, which was purge. No harm no foul there, as I did get rid of a lot of stuff! This year though should be different. There are a lot of words, and I even know what some of them mean. I considered the first one that popped into my mind…reinvent?

Quite frankly it sounded exhausting. I felt defeated before I could even entertain the possibility of drawing up a plan for such an overhaul. Plus, if I were to reinvent myself, would I then become someone else? Various parts of my body snapped to attention at the notion:

  • "She isn't going to start wearing high heels, is she? We love our Nikes!"
  • "She isn't going to give up candy is she?"
  • "Oh great, she's going to be less sarcastic?"

Everybody just calm down! There must be some good bits of a person in here somewhere, so let's dust them off and revive them. Yes…REVIVE! Step away from the Christmas cookies and Twix bars. Save those for special treats, and those salted caramels? Save them for when you need to feel a little fancy. Get back to what you know, Andrea. Grab a handful of those peanut m&m's that are as comfy and vital to your well-being as a cup of coffee is to others, and revive yourself!

Stop using the pedometer only to check the time of day. Try following a recipe that isn't on a packet of taco seasoning or the back of a rice box. Come on, girl, you know this person! Get rid of that box of hair color that has been hanging around by actually putting it IN your hair! Clear out some more clutter, you know how you love that. Write down that mental to-do list and stop ignoring it, you know how you get crap done just for the thrill of crossing it off your list. Ask your daughter again nicely to help redesign your blog, maybe even write an actual post. Put on a cape, write a letter and laugh! It is time to revive yourself! Phew! 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Superhero Sunday - Elixir

Popeye had his spinach and now, in addition to this beautiful cape, there has been some restocking...
…stay tuned for…

Friday, January 9, 2015

Week 29 - an update

Let's go back to where this started for me. You don't remember where? Well then let me show you wear…as in 'wears…as in underWEARS! My letter to Hanes was the first one I posted for this CONTEST.

Sadly, I received no response from the panty people. A super awesome friend swooped in and was able to provide actual names of people I could send my letters to. I resent the original letter to the vp of something or other, and then decided to whip up a little something extra for the VP of women's underwear...

Dear Hanes Brains,

A few months ago I sent a letter of appreciation to your company. While I was disappointed that I did not hear anything back, I realized maybe either I hadn’t included enough love for Hanes her Way, or my envelope had not found its way out of the mailroom yet. A friend of mine in Winston-Salem gave me this specific address to write to, so I thought I would try again. May I present…

Ode to Undies

Methinks it’s neat
How you cover my seat
No need to feel edgy
Retrieving a wedgie
Your lo-rise briefs rule
Cottony soft and cool
Softly hugging my fanny
The fit is uncanny
Not too loose or tight
Sized just right
Thanks to the low cost
The college fund is not lost.

Thanks for having us covered!

Wearing the ‘wears,

So did I fare better with my 'wears this time, or was I left dangling in the breeze like stretched out elastic? BOING! Um, yeah, that would be the sound of a waistband snapping. No points for me, butt at least my underwear fit!

Current point total = 62

The competition had a pretty bad case of the windchills and kids out of school this week, so her return to the contest is operating on a slight delay.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Return of the Random

Despite the snow day we had yesterday for what would have been the first day back to school… has come to my attention that today is Tuesday…all day long! Let's try to stir up some random, shall we. Gosh, the holidays seem like such a blur, don't they?
Oh wait, sorry, that was just my camera.

Hope you all had visions of sugarplums dancing in your heads…if you like that sort of thing. Maybe you're more of a carnivore? 
All I could picture was Fred Flintstone's car tipping over when his meal was served as I saw the portion of meat my father dished up for my son.

Hope you all had joyous tunes in your head. My son played the viola as part of a string quartet at our local library. I had signed out one book and purchased three others before I even sat down. (Yes, I purchase books at the library, don't ask.)
Fifty-five minutes of fabulous holiday tunes…fifty-five minutes of oh-my-gosh-look-at-all-of-the-books - MUST READ THE BOOKS!!!!!

Hope you all got to spoil yourselves…you know by getting some "clean" legos instead of dusty ones! (Go ahead and click here if you didn't get that reference.)

Hope you all had good hair days…never once accidentally getting a hammerhead shark caught in your locks. 
Oops, poor baby girl! (She was immediately helped once the photo was taken.)

Hope you are all settling back in to your regular, and no doubt glamorous, routines! 
Yes, the thirteenth series of Lego mini figures is out, so I made myself comfortable as a new quest began! Well, it is really more of an old recurring quest, I suppose.)

Happy New Year and cheers to all of you!

Stacy Uncorked

As far as resolutions go for this year, I am planning to try to floss my teeth more often and maintain my sanity…and also apparently giving you all the opportunity to feel like you are better at making resolutions than I am! (You're welcome.)

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Superhero Sunday - GADS!

It might take more than a cape to get this show back in the road! Is this thing on? Is there anybody still out there? Seriously, did my cape get thrown out with the wadded up wrapping paper? Is it reasonable that the gingerbread man in the foil cape is still on the counter?