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What it’s like to go to the Emmys

Where do I begin?

Have you ever been so joyously happy and miserable all at the same time? And don’t get me wrong, I loved every minute of the night, but gosh darn it, I need a team! A team people! Celebrities have it good. They have stylists, assistants, handlers, you name it. I have just myself. But enough complaining- here goes.

As you may or may not know, I won tickets to the Emmys through the Galderma Breakup With Your Makeup Contest.

We happen to be in the LA area on vacation anyway. So as fun as it would have been to fully take advantage of hotel and air travel the contest provided, we were already down in Southern Cal.

The limo picked us up that Monday afternoon. It takes a solid hour to get through LA traffic. I’m not sure who’s job it was, but I didn’t get a limo pass or a parking pass for the driver. Our driver, Felix, has done this for 20 years or so. He takes celebrities and guests to all the award shows. He knows the drill. So when he asked me for my pass, I didn’t have anything to give him. I’m guessing this was so I could be dropped off for the red carpet. Huge sad face here for not getting that privilege. But I also felt bad for Felix since he couldn’t park in the designated limo lot and had to bide his time for 3 hours while waiting for us.

Because we got dropped off 2 blocks away, we had to walk. No biggy. But our shoes were brand new. What idiot wears new shoes to an awards show? These idiots. I thought since my shoes were flat with a tiny heel, I’d be good. No. Patent leather doesn’t give. Add 85 degree temperatures and sweaty feet and what do you get? Blisters.

Holy shit the blisters killed me and we hadn’t even gotten in the door!

Speaking of the door. Our entrance was not the red carpet, but it was parallel to the red carpet of all the celebs, entertainment reporters and the who’s who of Hollywood. They went in the same door though to the lobby as we did. When I started to get a glimpse of stars like Taylor Kitsch (Friday Night Lights) and Kiernan Shipka (Mad Men) I started to get a little flustered!

Then I saw Laverne Cox from Orange is the New Black and I almost shrieked out loud.

Frugie Blog at the Emmys Laverne Cox

There’s Laverne Cox walking right by me!

Emma and I only had 15 minutes until air time and they are strict about you being in your seats when cameras are rolling. They don’t let you in except for commercial breaks if you don’t make it to your seats. So I wasn’t going to miss anything!

We slipped into the ladies room for a quick pre-show tinkle (heck, it was supposed to be a 3 hour broadcast!)  I turn the corner and there is Laura Prepon from Orange is the New Black!

Then out comes from a stall, Uzo Aduba “Crazy Eyes” from Orange is the New Black! What the hell? Are they all in here?

Frugie goes to the Emmys

Uzo “Crazy Eyes” Aduba from Orange is the New Black. In the bathroom!

I take note of the free eyeliner and lip gloss left in glass jars provided by L’Oreal at the sinks. I shove a few in my clutch. Normally I’d be flipping out over free makeup, but seeing your favorite Netflix actors in person kind of trumps product!

As much as I wanted to see what other actors were going to come out of bathroom stalls, it was really time to get to our seats. There was a throng of folks pushing through the lobby. Oh and you know, Laura Prepon was right behind Emma. I’m trying to take a selfie, but unsuccessful. I can’t walk and take pictures at the same time. The number of times I saw that woman you’d think I would have gotten a picture!

We go up to our seats in the Loge section.

Once we were in our places, we look out and the whole Nokia Theater is amazing! It’s just like on TV only better! We’re here! We’re actually here!

Frugie Blog at the Emmys

The view from our seats at the Nokia Theater.

We sit down and they are doing all kinds of prepping for the audience over the intercom. Counting down until broadcast, asking folks to applaud when we’re on the air. That kind of thing.

Perched above in our seats, we could look below at all the celebs in the front section. Is it weird that I could spot and recognize Sofia Vergara from 300 feet away?

I was looking for Kevin Spacey and tweeted him my seat number, but he didn’t reply.

My blisters were killing me and I took off my shoes. It’s dark, no one could see.  And then I realized that it had been several hours since I ate and it will be several more hours until I will eat again. Hmm, is this how celebs stay so skinny?

I was starving!! Emma and I chewed on sticks of gum and I had a packet of dried apricots in my evening bag. What I wanted was a giant basket of fish and chips and a cold Gin and tonic, but sadly, gum and apricots were all we had.

If the show seems long while watching from home, it flies by when you’re sitting in the audience. For real. It went so quickly.

The In Memoriam tribute for those lost in the industry, and the special Robin Williams tribute by Billy Crystal weighed heavy in the room. I was crying. Not sure about anyone else, but it was incredibly heartfelt.

At the last commercial break, there was an announcement that those with Governor’s Ball tickets are to exit the side door, and those without are to exit through the back door. Sad trombone here.

Gee whiz. How I wish I could’ve snagged a few of THOSE tickets!

As we file out and head down the escalator, I’m rubber necking around to see any glimpse of folks that I’m dying to rub elbows with. And low and behold, there he was. Off to the side. Standing like he really didn’t want anyone to notice him. But his 6 foot plus frame is hard to miss. Not like a lot of other actors who are short and blend, mind you! But I could tell immediately it was Idris Elba. He’d been nominated for his role in Luther and come from the UK just for me, er us. Er, the show.

I told Emma, “hang on a sec.” And bee-lined for Idris. I touched him on his arm and said, “Sir, may I have a picture?” He seemed reluctant, but answered, “Sure.”

I fumbled with my phone (holy shit, holy shit, holy shit) and snapped the selfie hoping and praying that it looked good. You only get one shot kid!

I looked him in the eyes and gave him a most sincere “thank you” and I think I might have curtsied, but whatever. He nodded back and said “thank you” as well.

I met back up with Emma and she was all, “who was that?” I told her and she didn’t seem to get the magnitude of what had just happened. I felt my knees go weak and my heart race. HOLY SHIT I JUST GOT A SELFIE WITH IDRIS ELBA!

Frugie with Idris Elba at the Emmys

Look! It’s Oscar and Emmy nominee Idris Elba!

I immediately posted it to social media. My Facebook friends were freaking out. My mom texts me, “who is the handsome man with you in the picture?” My night was made. Boom.

And then, Emma and I hobbled our way out the back door, just like we were supposed to. We texted Felix that we were approaching. How I wish we had that frickin’ limo pass to pick us up at the door!

Part of me didn’t want to leave and the other part, my feet and stomach part, wanted desperately to get home. Or to our hotel in Disneyland with the boys.

Emma and I did something so awful and disgusting. We took off our shoes on the streets of LA to walk the 2 blocks to our waiting limo. Yes, people gave us sideways glances. Sure there was probably urine and God knows what on the concrete. Who cares? We were miserable.

Heading to the hotel to Disneyland in the limo, Felix asked about the show and what celebrities we saw. He got a real kick out of all the ones I spotted in the ladies’ room.

Arriving at Disneyland only kept us on our cloud and getting in our hotel room to the room service waiting that McSweetie ordered (a pot of tea, bless him!). We chowed down on our Ceasar salad and quesadilla while rattling off everything we could to the boys.

And that’s our Emmys night folks.

It was a thrill and a half.

Now I just need to go to the Oscars! A girl can dream.

 

 

The lost bouquet

 

 The Lost Bouquet by Frugalista Blog, wedding, anniversaries, marriage, bridal

 

If you’re like me, you pretty much obsessed over every wedding detail since you were five.

Of course, by the time I was 25 things changed. Like, I wasn’t going to have a horse-drawn carriage or a dress with a hoop skirt. The 80s of my childhood consisted of a lot of Princess Diana wedding dreams. Then my teens and early twenties took me to an obsession with Jackie Kennedy. So much so that I found a very similar wedding dress like the one she wore when she married John.

And in my typical fashion, it was on sale!

That’s pretty much where my Jackie Kennedy vision ended. Except for the wrist length gloves and strand of pearls I wore. But there were no dignitaries, senators, or heads of state at our wedding. And we also had a budget, so no old Bouvier money to pay for the jazz band I ordered.

I found a florist that I simply fell in love with. She created a ‘Martha Stewart’ type portfolio of lush foliage. And actually, Martha Stewart had only just started her Weddings empire in the early 90s, so all of this seemed ahead of its time. I kept in mind the orange blossom and narcissus flowers Jackie had used, but I also had a theme of hydrangeas throughout. Hydrangeas everywhere!

When we headed out for pictures the morning of the wedding with my bridesmaids, I was tucked in the backseat of my dear friend, Melissa’s Subaru Outback. My dress spilling over me, I dare not move, but the flowers had arrived and I wanted to see my bouquet. She brought it to me in the car and I carried it on my lap in its delicate cool-petaled glory. It was fragrant and felt just the right weight in my hand. I arrived at the park that had the rose garden we reserved  for pictures and for my groom to get his first glimpse of his bride.

It all went perfectly well. The clouds hung over us like they were about to rain, but held off, not sprinkling but creating a reflective veil of lighting for the photographer.

I felt fabulous in my dress. I felt terribly uncomfortable in my shoes! But that’s another story. They sure were adorable. Everyone looked beautiful. I held on to my bouquet tightly. It was an anchor for the day. Giving me something to do with my hands, drawing me in to its delicate, sweet scent. Scent is a powerful thing. It settles back in our ole factory glands and burns itself in our memory vault.

I had the florist make a mini bouquet for the bouquet toss at the reception. It was a sweet little nosegay of similar flowers so I could spare my bouquet and have it as a keepsake.

By the end of the festivities and cake cutting, garter throwing and first dances, so much was happening and time was running out to get changed and to our honeymoon suite. I felt like Cinderella at the ball. I didn’t want it to end, but the clock kept ticking and even though I wasn’t going to turn into any pumpkins, we had to keep a schedule. I knew my bridal party would look after all the cleanup and details that bridal parties do. All our bouquets were on the cake table to add to the floral decor. I needed to change and run off with my husband for our wedding night. Things like where to store my petticoats and paying the caterer were left to all my ladies in waiting of moms, aunts, bridesmaids, sisters, etc. I knew things would be handled.

The next day at my parent’s house was a wedding breakfast. An all day open house that gave us time to soak up each others company and bask in the post wedding glow. For friends and family that traveled from afar to be with us, this was an extra special day that gave us that time to share without so much of the craziness of the previous day’s events.

I saw many of the centerpieces from the reception displayed throughout my mom’s living room and patio.

“Where’s my bouquet?” I asked her.

After going through each and every box, vase and display, my bouquet wasn’t anywhere. Not one of my bridesmaids remembers picking it up.

Strange, because most of the flowers made it back to my parent’s house. How could this particular piece not?

I didn’t get too upset over it. Heck. Lots of things could have gone awry for the occasion and that was such a minor thing. So many of my cherished people were working so hard to make this day a success, what was a little detail like ‘we lost the bride’s bouquet’ going to really add up to in the end?

Anyway, we had a two week honeymoon ahead of us to New England to see the sights of Cape Code, Vermont and the shores of Maine. There wasn’t any need to worry about some dumb flowers.

After returning from my honeymoon, I still needed to get some last few personal belongings from my apartment I shared with my roommate, also a bridesmaid. I let myself in when she was at work, and packed up my final box of whatever. I noticed her bridesmaid’s bouquet sitting on a side table. It was drying and looked like a still life reminder of the fabulous event that had just happened two weeks prior. I felt a let-down of sorts.

It was over. All the planning and dreaming, magazine clippings, dress shopping, fantasizing was done. I had had my wedding that I wanted. It was a dream come true.

I was jealous I didn’t have a bouquet of my own drying on an end table.

One year later, celebrating our first anniversary, we had planned a weekend getaway to Victoria, B.C. We were going to visit the gardens and have high tea. It would give us that feeling of the wedding that took place among the gardens and flowers a year prior.

The night before we were to leave as we’re packing, James tells me to close my eyes and he wants to give me my present.

I’ve had presents and surprises from him before. Mountain bikes. Hmm, that didn’t go over well. Ice cream cakes. Okay, sweet, but I’m lactose intolerant. I figured this would be something charming and funny in his typical style.

I didn’t cheat. I kept my eyes shut. But I could smell it before I could see it. The fragrance hit the back of my sensory triggers and brought me all the way back to the beautiful day a year before when I married this man.

There was my bouquet. Not the same one from the wedding, but an exact replica he had the florist recreate.

I cried.

Its petals were cool and soft. It had the same weight of the first one, anchoring me in place as a bride. Orange blossom, freesia, roses and narcissus wafted above.

I couldn’t stop looking at it, smelling it and holding it. Much like a little girl getting a new doll, I was enraptured with my bouquet! I also, was unbelievably overwhelmed with gratitude and fulfillment that the man I married could see into my feelings and heart so much to know this mattered to me.

It meant more than any jewelry or crystal, paper or clocks, that any anniversary list could have.

I kept that bouquet for 16 years. I only just threw it away after going through a revamp of my living room. It was disintegrating and dusty. I didn’t preserve it professionally. I didn’t need to.

I had had my fill of my flowers, I had my memories and pictures. And I had my husband who cared so much about me and understood sentimentality like I could only hope.

It was a dream come true, that I hadn’t even dreamed in the first place.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BIG NEWS and a giveaway!

I have some great news.

Ahem.

Emma and I will be attending an award show soon.

Rhymes with FLEMMY. Watch the video to see-

ALSO,

I’m doing a giveaway for a Smile Brilliant! teeth whitening kit valued at $300. It’s fabulous! Check out my pearly whites in the video, then come back here to enter the contest!

Smile Brilliant teeth whitener giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**I was given this product to review, the words and ideas are all my own.


It’s not my place to judge

“Suicide is painless. It brings on many changes. And I can take or leave it if I please.”

Remember those lyrics to the M*A*S*H theme song? Well, it wasn’t sung in the opening of the show, but I had the sheet music when I was 9 to play on the piano. I thought those words were so odd to me at that age. What on earth could be painless about killing yourself?

But I’ve learned in my adult years, that to the person who commits suicide, the pain of living is greater than the act of death. Hard to comprehend, I know.

There’s been much talk about suicide after Robin Williams’ death on Monday. Many bloggers have written about the topic. Some with stupidity and ignorance that makes me cringe, and some with understanding, poignancy and heart that reaches out to those who might be in a dark place.

I’m not writing this as click-bait. I’m sort of jumping on the bandwagon, I suppose. But I want to keep the dialogue going. And I want to offer my comfort and love to those suffering among the living.

Not the depressed ones, no. The survivors of someone they love that has committed suicide. This post is for them. I know a few, sadly. And what I’ve been reading and hearing on the Internet and social media makes my heart break for them. Because it’s no one’s place to judge or condemn their loved one for something that person did. Albeit final, permanent and devastating, but not their place to judge. No.

The stages of grief are first Denial and then Anger. I think some people dwell in the stage of Anger longer than is appropriate.

Can you imagine your mother or husband taking their own life? Leaving you behind to grow up alone with your sisters, or raise children without a partner? I can’t either. I do feel angry for those left behind. I could scream on their behalf. But I’m not the one living it. It’s not my place to judge.

But I know people that are living this. And I want to tell them that there is no shame. The pain of that family member was so great, so confounding that no one can understand. And it isn’t anyone’s right or place to tell them what ‘choice’ (not my words) they made. They were sick. Sure it wasn’t cancer, but they were sick. And it’s not my place to judge.

The mind’s chemistry is still a mystery. But we have come many strides in science to know that there are chemicals the body needs to function. Just like insulin or oxygen, we need a balance. And when that balance is off, things can go haywire.

How horrible that Sarah goes to school ashamed she has no father because he killed himself over the summer when he lost his battle with Bipolar Disorder. But Sally’s mom passed away from cancer and everyone is making her cards and offering help. But Sarah’s mom and siblings don’t talk about their loss. They’re too ashamed. Everyone says, “How could he do such a thing? How could he leave his family like that?”

He didn’t rob a bank. He didn’t gun down a school. He was sick. Just like Sally’s mom. He was sick. And the flames of pain and darkness burned too hot. It’s not our place to judge.

I can’t say it better than David Foster Wallace:

“The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling.”

I feel so unqualified to even broach this topic. But battling depression myself, knowing a friend who sought help to keep from attempting suicide, and the dear loved ones of friends and family that I know who are survivors of suicide; I can only offer my words as a salve. A balm to their wounds that might wear off temporarily, but hopefully will be felt at a time of need. It’s not my place to judge. And it’s not yours either.

 

It's not my place to judge by Frugalista Blog lifting the shame of suicide for those left behind

 

 

A kid’s guide to how to ask your parents for a hamster

 

A kid's guide to how to ask your parents for a hamster by Frugalista Blog

My daughter knew her father would be a tough sell on getting him convinced she could have a hamster.

We have a cat and a dog and despite my request for a houseful of kittens, he says that we have all the pets we’ll ever have.

Emma is a pretty clever kid.

So she knew that if she left the gate with just, “Dad, can I have a hamster?” the answer would be “NO”.

She decided to come up with a plan.

First- clean your room or bathroom, wherever you plan on keeping the little furry rodent’s dwelling.

Second- don’t ask for anything for awhile and come across as very low maintenance.

Three- have ovary surgery where they rearrange your insides.

Okay, that’s not fair. Not every kid can pull the surgery card, but it does work well if you do have it in your deck.

Find a time when dad isn’t stressed or just came home from work, isn’t distracted by a World Cup game, watching the NBA draft, or finishing his roster for coaching your brother’s soccer game. Yeah, if you understood that sentence, that means there’s very little time dad isn’t stressed or distracted.

Have a whole bunch of your babysitting money saved up so you don’t ask your parents for funding this furry venture.

Once you’ve accomplished all the above, sit down with your dad casually. Probably while he’s chilling with a beer.

And then in your sweetest, yet direct on mature, but not too mature voice, ask, “A lot of my friends have gotten them, and I know it seems weird at first, but I think you’ll consider the idea, can I get a belly button piercing?” Then hold for dramatic pause.

Then when he looks at you in shock, appease his worries with soft laughter,

“Ha ha, I’m just kidding.” “But rather, actually, can I have a hamster?” Then look him squarely in the eye and smile.

Ha! See? It’s the old ‘bait and switch’ tactic!

Once the shock of the thought of his little girl getting some kind of ornamental piercing hanging from a part of her body that he once bathed and applied ointment to the first few days after birth to ensure it healed properly, he can wrap his head around a furry little friend joining your home that pees and poos in a cage of wood shavings.

If at first he gives you the no answer answer, which goes like, “Oh, a hamster, ha ha. I get it. Hmmm…”  and then goes back to his beer and laptop, don’t fret. That’s not actually a ‘No’. It’s a non-answer that just hangs in the air.  What’s critical here is not to press him. Just go with the flow.

If you’re mom is already on board and supporting you with the decision, then let her do the closing.

Do your research and maybe mention a few people you know who have experience with hamsters as pets. Stress the low maintenance feature. Dad’s appreciate this.

It doesn’t hurt to take a trip to a few pet stores and scope out the one you want to get.  Once you find the one you fall in love with, bring back these anecdotes of how you held the cutest, sweetest hamster of the bunch and we wouldn’t want him to get purchased by someone else.

Have your mom approach him casually with, “well, Emma’s gotten all she needs for her hamster and we’ll head to the pet store tomorrow to bring him home. It really was the cutest one and it liked her immediately.”

When your mom helps convince your dad, you’ve hit a home run.

Bring that fur ball home and congratulations! You are now the owner of a tiny rodent.

Oh, and the pee and the bedding do stink. I’m not gonna lie. Be sure to tidy it daily, and clean its shavings weekly. If the smell overwhelms your parents, you’ve failed at the hamster parenting task and they’ll never trust you again.

For part two of this story, stay tuned on how to retrieve your hamster from the floor boards when you lose him behind the bathroom cupboard. That was fun. (sarcasm font)

 

 

 

Damn you, Gwyneth!

It seems of recent, that you can’t eat kale or be a health nut without being mocked just a little bit.

There’s this weird dichotomy of it’s hipster to be healthy, but it’s also hip to make fun of  the healthy chickpea eating hipsters.

And then there’s the notion that not eating meat makes you a wimp. Or eating super healthy makes you a hipster at all. Which I am not trying to be! DO I look like a hipster in my pajama jeans? I think not.

Or that getting excited over chia seeds makes you crazy.

I’m blaming Gwyneth Paltrow.

Ever since Gwynnie consciously uncoupled from Chris it’s been cool to hate her.  And I will admit, I kinda don’t like her these days. I’m a little bit flummoxed over her ‘working on a movie set is hard’ complaints and her ‘I can’t decide which manor to live in’ divorce issues. And the fact that she doesn’t let her kids eat ice cream is criminal in my book.

But this isn’t about Gwynster. It’s about all of us.

We’re fat. A lot of us are fat. And I mean that in the nicest, most loving way possible. We have DIAHBEETUS, and heart disease up the wazoo. And it’s killing us.

Kids are fat too. We eat fast food. We like Frappuccinos. And not just a Frappuccino treat, but a frickin’ Venti Big Gulp size Frapadingo with syrup!

So we hate on Gwyn because she’s skinny, right? No. We hate on Gwyn because she makes us feel bad for our love for Big Gulp Frappy Syrupy drinks we chug each week.

But what if we had the Frappuccinos sometimes, maybe a little bit smaller, and we tried the chia seeds? And if you’re friend is eating kale, don’t make fun of her. What if we tried that, huh?

I posted on my Facebook that I made a ‘compost pile dinner’. It was a giant combination of veggies, fruits, beet juice, coconut water, chia seeds all mixed in my Vitamix. It was a crazy concoction. But you know what? I feel so good after drinking it. Folks were telling me to put vodka in it. (Uh, that defeats the purpose.)  And I was making fun of it too. Because it’s not cool to mix beets and swiss chard. It’s cool to eat bacon on a bacon cracker with bacon dressing and bacon sauce. Or whatever. Bacon.

Bacon is cool. Kale is not.

I can’t eat bacon. No. I’m not Jewish. My body doesn’t like it. It makes my tummy angry. And guess what America? It makes your arteries angry too! But don’t take my word for it.

A friend in a Facebook group confessed that she’s trying to do some clean eating but she doesn’t want to tell a whole lot of people because they might think she’s being pretentious about her food choices.

I think it’s pretentious not to poop for days because your bowels are all backed up from eating crap. So I told her, you go on with your fine self and eat the plants. Feel good! Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

I have a love / hate relationship with food. Not in an eating disorders kind of way. More like a, I love meat and cheese and it doesn’t love me back. My milkshake does not bring the boys to the yard, it brings me to the bathroom with diarrhea.

So it’s coconut sorbet for me! But if I talk quinoa and coconut, folks look at me sideways.

Hey, let’s agree to this: How about unless you’re boiling kittens for dinner, we save our judgements about our food choices to ourselves?! And if you need to eat plants because you want to be healthy and not spend all day in the bathroom, yay. I support you.

If you like pork and Velveeta and think it’s yummy and it gets you through your day, I support that too. I know there’s hardcore vegans out there that think differently. But making someone feel bad about a choice doesn’t necessarily change their thinking about that choice.

We need to form people’s thinking to be positive around the plant foods. The sustainable choices that are good for us and the earth. Not chastise them for eating the meat. That’s just my feeling. Make plants cool without trying too hard.

Like my friend Katy says, “I haven’t eaten a face in 20 years, but I’m not a dick about it.”

So if you’re friend orders a quinoa loaf with a side of chickpea and sesame salad, don’t rag on them. And if you’re friend orders a bacon double cheeseburger when you ordered the quinoa loaf, maybe don’t make them feel like a serial killer.

A little respect, compromise and open-mindedness can get us further.

And if I post on Facebook that I’m eating less junk and more greens, it’s because I like my colon to be happy. Not that I’m trying to be like Gwyneth.

Mung beans for everyone!

Just kidding. Actually, I have a really good farro recipe…..

My America. Your America.

Are you a Republican? A Democrat? Maybe you’re an Independent. Maybe you’re apathetic and seem to just ignore politics and those public figures.

Are you Christian? A Jew? Athiest?

What I’m getting at is, it doesn’t matter. Regardless of your beliefs or ideals, some things are just a big deal and really cool to experience.

Yesterday, I got to do something with my children that we will never forget. It was something only a handful of people get the opportunity to do.

We greeted Air Force One and shook President Obama’s hand!

Yeah! Pretty freaking amazing!!

Have you shaken a standing president’s hand before?

Have you been [this close] to Secret Service? It’s pretty cool.

We have a lot of crap going on in the world. A lot of ills and worries. But there’s also lots and lots of cool and wonderful things. I like to focus on the wonderful. But that doesn’t mean I’m not helping or trying to help the ill or ailing as well.

We took the kids to Washington D.C. in 2010. Seeing the Smithsonian monuments and hearing all the history was a banquet of memories and emotions for the kids and us. We love history. We love this country.

I watch documentaries on presidents all the time. I have a fascination with the Kennedy’s. I modeled my wedding dress after Jackie’s gown. And then I got to see it at the Kennedy Library on our honeymoon, but only by coincidence. I didn’t plan things THAT well!

Politics and politicians can be incredibly divisive. We have a tendency of hearing things on 24 hour news channels and either wanting to believe them because they fit with our ideals, not having the energy to disbelieve because ‘ain’t nobody got time for that’, OR, wondering if everything you hear you need to take with a grain of salt.

I respect the office of the presidency of the United States of America. And whether or not you voted for that particular president that comes to your town, doesn’t matter. The president is in town! How cool is that?

We have a lot to be grateful for. I am grateful for my rights as a citizen and enjoying the freedom to shake a president’s hand, go to my church, and love who I want.

Oh, and I asked about your religion earlier because, had I met the Dalai Lama or Pope Francis, would you spew your religious inclinations my way? Your grievances with the Catholic church or Tibet? I hope not. I would hope that you can understand that it’s awesome and fabulous, and an experience that should be respected.

My kids got to do something they will tell their kids about one day.

So here you go. Our pics with the president.

Frugalista blog with Air Force One

The kids and I  pose in front of Air Force One in Seattle.

 

President Obama with Owen

President Obama chatting with Owen, and Emma’s head in the foreground.

 

The money shot and Owen shaking Obama’s hand.



My subscription box addiction

Two things I know. You can’t brush your teeth while eating Oreos. And, I have an addiction to subscription boxes.

It’s true.

I might need to join a support group. It might be a new TV show on TLC. It’s not necessarily my fault when they are SHOVED IN MY FACE all over the Internet.

And here I am enabling you too.

I am your dealer. Your pimp. Because now I’m telling you how great these babies are.

And I’m telling you that you should sign up.

One in particular is Beauty Box 5. If you follow my blog, you’ve seen me describe each month’s box of goodies.

This month is pretty awesome too. Here’s a picture to see. I could tell you all about it or you could see for yourself.  For more details, go to their website and check it out- Beauty Box 5

Frugalista Blog invites you to try Beauty Box 5

I was not compensated for this review. All opinions are my own.

I like you. Do you like you?

I have seen a lot of stuff lately on the Internet about embracing our own quirks. I have a lot of quirks to embrace, so my arms might get tired. That’s a joke.

There’s the Colbie Caillat video “Try” how she is tired of being photoshopped. Go Colbie! I love it.  Deconstructing all the fake hair, lashes, gloss and softening to show her no makeup, still beautiful self. Mostly, I love that video for the little girls in there with their makeup and their flat irons being ditched for the natural curls, young complexions and innocent faces that are more their age.  Stop trying so hard! Right?

Far be it from me to tell you to abandon your makeup or anything that makes you look different than you actually do. I like to think makeup enhances my features. When you’re blond and fair like me, you can’t see my eyes well without some liner and mascara. And I will be the first to admit, I love makeup. I love looking airbrushed and ‘perfect’. Whatever that is. I like ‘blurring’ my wrinkles, without telling someone to just squint when they look at me. I cover the redness from the Rosacea I have. I give myself a smokey eye to be alluring and so you can see me across the room, or at least that’s what I’m trying to do. I use thickening products in my hair to make it have volume, I’m constantly battling wrinkles. I’m trying pretty hard I guess.

Watching the teen girls in the Colbie Caillat video made me think of my 14 year old daughter. She’s beautiful, with milky peachy skin. Gorgeous blue eyes. And a smattering of freckles across her face.

She hates her freckles.

She spends many minutes in front of her mirror covering those freckles with BB cream and concealer. To her credit, she has lots of ‘no makeup’ days too. But she’s always hated her freckles. So when she was allowed to wear makeup, the first thing she did was cover her spots. Her freckles ruin the ‘perfect’ look. They take away the ‘airbrush’ quality she envisions for herself. I think they make her look fresh and young. She thinks she looks ‘dirty’.

She’s not the first girl to not like her freckles. I didn’t like my freckles growing up either. I especially didn’t like the ones on my upper lip that made me look like I had a mustache. Now my freckles are more like age spots, so I don’t really like them still.

I tell her that I love her freckles. She rolls her eyes at me.

Then there’s my son. My son is skinny. He hates being so skinny sometimes. I love that he’s skinny. He’s just like his dad. I tell him he can run fast and he doesn’t have to worry about his clothes getting snug on him. But kids make fun of him for being so skinny. I guess kids find anything to tease about another kid.

So what do I not like about me that other people like about me?

It’s weird to think of. My stretch marks? Hmm, I don’t think other people love those. My poochy tummy? Yeah, still haven’t heard much love for that.

I’ve always not liked my lips and my mouth. I have big lips and a big mouth. The years before ‘troutmouth’ and Real Housewives got lip implants, my lips seemed to be my downfall. I felt like they were misplaced and didn’t belong. Why couldn’t I have a sweet, delicate pucker? Why did I have to have this horse mouth?

Once I was old enough to kiss a guy with those lips, I started getting compliments on them. Huh. Apparently full lips are desirable. The teen me didn’t know this.  It was surprising to be admired for them later in my 20s. Beauty consultants behind the counter at department stores always compliment my lips when I try on lipstick, telling me I have the perfect shape. Really? I started to accept that they were part of me and I just had to make the best of them.

What made me most self conscious was starting to become my best asset.

So eventually I started to appreciate my pout. I wear lipstick in any shade I want. Once I read that full lips shouldn’t wear dark lipstick as to not bring too much attention to the mouth. Pfft to that. I will wear whatever goddamn color I feel like! Yeah, I laugh loud, and I smile big, but now I’m pretty much proud of this giant gob. Or cake hole as my dad would call it. I can fit a lot of cake in my cake hole.

What is it about yourself you don’t like? Is it your curly hair? Is it your gangly long legs? I bet if you asked someone else, they would say you have a beautiful head of thick hair, and they wish they had long legs like you.

Because the grass is always greener, right?

I hope more young girls start liking their freckles, their curly hair, their moles and skinny legs their big lips. Like Colbie says, you don’t have to try so hard.

Start liking you. You might be surprised.

I like you. Do you like you? By Frugalista Blog

 

Little Frugie on the Prairie

I would kick ass as a prairie woman! Okay, except for the outhouse part. And the working from sun up to sun down. And maybe the fact that there was no WiFi in 1888.

BUT, still, I think I would rule the homestead.

I took the children and my friend and her children to a place called Pioneer Farms. It’s in the Ohop Valley in Washington and is a good one hour drive from my house.

Of course, this involved a Starbucks stop and a potty stop on the way. Obviously we weren’t embracing the accurate means of covered wagon travel to get to this pioneering homestead.

So with our iPhones and Galaxy S4s charged up for plenty of pictures and Instagramming, oh, and not to mention lots of hand sanitizer and sunscreen, off we went to experience the life of the pioneers. (sarcasm font)

Upon arrival, of course, I had to pee. So the outhouses they have on the site, are – outhouses. Yep. No Honey Buckets especiale here. These babes haven’t been emptied in at least 50 years. I’m guessing they put some enzyme in them or something so that the waste doesn’t actually climb out and meet you on the freeway. I had been to this farm when I was 9 and the outhouse was in the same location. So if you think they dig a new hole every ten years, then you’d be wrong.

How nice that I’ve dedicated an entire paragraph to outhouses. But the point is, they’re awful. They stink. And anything down wind stinks too. So enjoy that in the middle of the night when your bison fried steak disagrees with you.

We got to see a school house where the rules were made clear that girls got more lashes than boys for having something misspelled or a math problem wrong. Too bad women’s rights would be another 30 years and then some.

The homes were pretty small in those days. I guess since you built them yourself with only your wife and 5 children under the age of 5 to help you, granite counter tops, bonus rooms, and bay windows were kind of hard to come by.

With that said, the homes were really small in those days. So apparently bedrooms and privacy were nil. Personally, I would just make the house bigger if I’m the one building it. But having 7 family members in 100 square feet of space is cozy.

Children did major chores by the time they were 4. And not just gathering eggs from the chickens or kneading bread dough. They cut wood. Can you imagine giving your 4 year old a saw?  Ha ha ha! I know, I know, I know. There was a necessity to make them work so young. I’m not stupid. But still. A saw. Owen can barely butter toast. If I was waiting for the wood for that morning’s breakfast and Owen was in charge of bringing in the wood, we’d be eating at noon.

Our tour started in the barn. We got to milk Daisy the cow and gather the eggs and the children did an excellent job of picking up the chickens to gather them in the coop. The goats and pig and sheep were super cute and friendly. Every kid got a ride on Jake the horse. I would have ridden him too, but I was wearing a skirt and flip flops so that would have been silly if I did.

We would all have been screwed in 1880 without our Zyrtec. We all started sneezing from the hay.

My question is, would I be lactose intolerant back then? Hmm… that would make things a little awkward since coconut milk was not at the General Store.

For your entertainment, here’s all the chores and farm activities I got to do in pictures:

Little Frugie on the Prairie

I’m a po’ down trodden woman. Look how pitiful I look. The bonnet is a nice touch, don’t you think?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Frugie on the Prairie

That shirt was like a piece of cardboard after drying in the sun all day. Can you imagine wearing it?

 

Frugie on the Prairie makes horse shoes

Yeah, so that’s a 2000 degree forge and Owen and I are just you know, heating up metal to hammer and shape for horse shoes. Despite my protective eye wear, I did not feel confident. A flame retardant suit and giant Ov Glove would have made me feel more safe.

Frugie on the Prairie shaving wood

This was one of the jobs a 4 year old would do. Apparently, I’m not as skilled as a 4 year old. It’s the process of shaving down a piece of wood for an ax handle or something. It was quite difficult.

Look Ma, I’m shaving wood!

I caught this chicken and then made it into soup. Just kidding. I didn’t make it into soup. Actually, I didn’t catch it either. Emma did. Notice the photo bomb?