Barbie’s New Body

barbie (1)When I was a young girl, I played with a Barbie doll.

I wanted to look like Barbie–that perfectly wasp-like waist, those petite feet, and the long, artistic fingers.

Barbie was everything that I was not… Perfect.

After nearly sixty years, Barbie’s getting a ‘real’ make-over.

She will be made in 33 new styles–four new body styles with dozens of different features.

Now girls will play with a more realistic doll that will help them feel more comfortable in their own skin.  🙂

Pickleball Kool-Aid

I recently traveled to California to visit family.

Reno-PBActually, the REAL reason for my trip was to attend a pickleball camp and visit with Carol who also wanted to attend the camp.

The good news is that one of the family members I came to visit has recently started playing pickleball so I was able to combine both loves–family AND pickleball.

Pam-RobertPam recently retired from teaching 5th graders. She has some health issues and was worried about how she was going to fill her days after retirement.

I last saw Pam two years ago at a family reunion. While visiting at that reunion, I talked with her about pickleball. (Don’t all pickleball fanatics talk to others about pickleball whether their listeners want to hear about it or not? 🙂 )

Pam just said “Hmmmm…” and “Well, that sounds like fun…” while I talked with her about pickle. Actually I talked TO her about it, not WITH her about it.

glazed-eyesI’m pretty sure her eyes glazed over as I went on and on about this AMAZING sport! After she fell asleep on the couch, I went on to the next cousins to tell THEM all about pickle.

Pam was worried that her health issues wouldn’t allow her to play.

I didn’t convince Pam, but Myles, my nephew, went down to visit her six months ago. He’s a high school tennis player who picked up playing pickleball with my twin sister in Nevada.

He took four paddles and some balls and introduced Pam and a few neighbors into pickleball.

Pam was hooked! She fell in love with the sport and hasn’t stopped playing since.

pickleballSince her introduction to pickleball, Pam has accomplished a lot…

  • She started a club in her subdivision.
  • She’s convinced the home owner’s association to paint pickleball court lines on the seldom-used tennis courts.
  • She’s introduced the sport to her 80+ year old parents who now play twice a week.
  • She’s applied for and received a grant from the USAPA to help pay for nets and balls.

While attending the camp, Carol and I played with Pam’s club and gave a few helpful hints. Her group has a blast and is very eager to learn more about this fun game. They often meet to play on Friday nights and go out for pizza and beer afterwards.

Pam is still trying to convince others to try pickleball. She bugged one of her friends, Angie, for weeks to try it out.

Finally Angie gave in and came to an introductory session late one afternoon. Mainly, she just went to try to shut Pam up so that she wouldn’t keep talking about pickleball…

Angie called Pam early the next morning and said, “I drank the Kool-Aid! Buy me a paddle…”


Now Angie’s talking to others trying to get them to “Drink the Kool-Aid.” 🙂

Opening Doors

Thanks to Carol for finding this story!

I’m Josh Yandt – the Doorman. I was bullied in school. I made my high school a better place by holding doors and have inspired people all over the globe to be kind to one another. I speak to schools and workplaces promoting kindness.

Take a look!

Motel 6

Carol and I are staying in a Motel 6 while we attend the pickleball clinic.

It’s a very nice motel that is conveniently located for all we are doing on our trip.


The room is nicely furnished and quite comfortable. The WiFi is great. And the television works perfectly. We are watching the Australian Open each night, keeping the sports theme. 🙂


I’ve NEVER stayed at a Motel 6 before this trip.

Here’s why…

motel6-1While growing up in Reno, it seemed like nearly every murder that happened at a hotel/motel happened at the Motel 6 on Wells Avenue.

At least three murders a year happened there, or at least that is what it seemed like as we watched the news every night during dinner.

So, I must admit that I was a bit leery about staying at this Motel 6 in the Sacramento area.

Carol assured me that it was quiet and a nice place to stay.

I trusted her UNTIL I went to get ice yesterday afternoon.

A woman was at the ice machine ahead of me and she had two HUGE bowls crammed FULL of ice.


That’s when I remembered the urban legend floating around the Internet years ago about the harvesting of kidneys from people placed in hotel bathtubs full of ice.


And because I have such a vivid and overactive imagination, I slept lightly last night with both hands wrapped around myself holding my kidneys… 🙂

Going Home Again

Carol and I met in Sacramento.  I flew down from Boise yesterday, and she drove down from Fallon and picked me up at the airport.


Might seem like a strange place to have a sisters visit. But there’s a great five-day pickleball clinic/camp we’ve signed up for that served as a great excuse to get away…

This visit is exactly what the doctor ordered for me.

The clinic is great, but even better is the time I’m spending with Carol.

bullfrogWe lived in Sacramento while we were kids up until we were nearly seven. And we used to live a few blocks from the American River where we used to hunt bullfrogs in the reeds along the river.

After the clinic’s first day, we went for a short drive up Highway 49 and went for a hike along the north fork of the American River. It felt like going home again…

There’s been so much rain recently that everything is sprouting up in spring-time green.


The hike crosses the Mountain Quarries Railroad  Bridge and there are several trails to take. We took the trail towards the Auburn Staging Area. I’d love to hike to “Ruck-a-Chuky” just because it’s so fun to say.  🙂0125161436The bridge was built in 1921 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004.


It’s a beautiful bridge and has withstood multiple floods in its nearly 100 years.

While I’m in awe of the trees, the bridge, and the structures, Carol’s looking for birds and was thrilled to see her first hummingbird of the year.  🙂

Here are a few random pictures from our hike…

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Chickens and Roads

Not sure, but I think this started here on Facebook: Entertaining Jokes.

Wherever it started, it’s hilarious! My favorite? Al Gore. 🙂

So why did the chicken cross the road?

ChickenSARAH PALIN: The chicken crossed the road because, gosh-darn it, he’s a maverick!

BARACK OBAMA: Let me be perfectly clear, if the chickens like their eggs they can keep their eggs. No chicken will be required to cross the road to surrender her eggs. Period.

JOHN McCAIN: My friends, the chicken crossed the road because he recognized the need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the other side of the road.

HILLARY CLINTON: What difference at this point does it make why the chicken crossed the road?

GEORGE W. BUSH: We don’t really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road or not. The chicken is either with us or against us. There is no middle ground here.

DICK CHENEY: Where’s my gun?

BILL CLINTON: I did not cross the road with that chicken.

AL GORE: I invented the chicken…. and the road.

JOHN KERRY: Although I voted to let the chicken cross the road, I am now against it! It was the wrong road to cross, and I was misled about the chicken’s intentions. I am not for it now, and will remain against it.

AL SHARPTON: Why are all the chickens white?

DR. PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won’t realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before it goes after the problem on the other side of the road. What we need to do is help him realize how stupid he is acting by not taking on his current problems before adding any new problems.

chicken-3OPRAH: Well, I understand that the chicken is having problems, which is why he wants to cross the road so badly. So instead of having the chicken learn from his mistakes and take falls, which is a part of life, I’m going to give this chicken a NEW CAR so that he can just drive across the road and not live his life like the rest of the chickens.

ANDERSON COOPER: We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been allowed to have access to the other side of the road.

NANCY GRACE: That chicken crossed the road because he’s guilty! You can see it in his eyes and the way he walks.

PAT BUCHANAN: To steal the job of a decent, hardworking American.

MARTHA STEWART: No one called me to warn me which way the chicken was going. I had a standing order at the Farmer’s Market to sell my eggs when the price dropped to a certain level. No little bird gave me any insider information.

DR SEUSS: Did the chicken cross the road? Did he cross it with a toad? Yes, the chicken crossed the road, but why it crossed I’ve not been told.


ERNEST HEMINGWAY: To die in the rain, alone.

GRANDPA: In my day we didn’t ask why the chicken crossed the road. Somebody told us the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough for us.

DONALD TRUMP: We should build a wall so the chicken can’t cross the road.

BARBARA WALTERS: Isn’t that interesting? In a few moments, we will be listening to the chicken tell, for the first time, the heartwarming story of how it experienced a serious case of molting, and went on to accomplish its lifelong dream of crossing the road.

ARISTOTLE: It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.

BILL GATES: I have just released eChicken2014, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents and balance your checkbook. Internet Explorer is an integral part of eChicken2014. This new platform is much more stable and will never reboot.

ALBERT EINSTEIN: Did the chicken really cross the road, or did the road move beneath the chicken?

COLONEL SANDERS: Did I miss one?

Good Tweetback

I’m trying to pay less attention to political news because I’m appalled at how the presidential candidates are behaving…

I’ve been pretty good about not clicking on the headlines to see which candidate is making a bigger a$$ of him/herself lately.

But this headline caught my eye and I had to click: Trump knocks Bush for turning to ‘mommy’

Trump tweeted the following after watching an ad that Barbara Bush made for her son Jeb Bush.


Here was Bush’s tweet back:


Cracked me up. 🙂

Take a look at this article about the tweet spat from Business Insider to get more of the story and back story:

Jeb Bush had the perfect response to Donald Trump taunting him for using ‘mommy’ in a campaign ad

Amid a Friday-night tweetstorm, real-estate tycoon Donald Trump mocked one of his presidential rivals, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R), for featuring former First Lady Barbara Bush in a new campaign ad.

Trump taunted Bush for relying on his famous “mommy.”

“Just watched Jeb’s ad where he desperately needed mommy to help him. Jeb — mom can’t help you with ISIS, the Chinese or with Putin,” Trump wrote.

Bush responded by posting a photo of his mother, now 90 years old, in football gear:

Barbara Bush had donned the football gear in 2014 as part of her anti-illiteracy campaign in Houston, Texas. She had partnered with Houston Texans star defensive end J.J. Watt for a video about “tackling” illiteracy.

“If we’re going to tackle illiteracy here in Houston, J.J., we’ve got to get our game faces on,” the former first lady told Watt.

Gotta Love a Good Storm

I love stormy weather!

There’s something about the energy and lightness of the air that just invigorates me.

Here’s a beautiful video by Jeff Boyce, owner of Negative Tilt.

The title “Negative Tilt” refers to a “negatively tilted trough”, which is a rather rare meteorological phenomenon that produces particularly severe weather. And although I shoot using only digital equipment, I felt the term “negative” still tied in with photography. Now I just need to get a “tilt-shift” lens… 🙂

After you watch this video, check more of Jeff’s fantastic work out at I think I might be doing a little shopping there…