Thursday, December 11, 2008


It's hard to believe that my oldest is 18! As everyone says, "where did the time go?" It's scary to realize that she's now an in almost every aspect of the word! And as a parent, I hope that the morals and ethics my husband and I have tried so diligently to instill in our children, will actually take hold. These are virtues that only time will reveal........On to the subject at hand...On Samantha's 18th birthday we enjoyed a quiet dinner with the family and a few friends. She wanted it to be a laid back, I wanted a party! (maybe for her high school graduation!) But I had anticipated this day for many years because I had a special surprise for her. When Sam was a little girl, her father and I divorced. Instead of completely trashing (or selling) my wedding ring, my dear friend Gail suggested that I remove the main diamond and replace it with Sam's birthstone (mind you, Sam was only a toddler at the time!) As a matter of fact, Gail (Sam's Godmother) bought the single diamond from me (I was desperate for money at the time!) and as a gift to me had the setting refitted with a yellow topaz! (the birthstone for November). The ring was beautiful! I decided at that moment to give it to Samantha when she turned 18...hence my anticipation for her birthday. Since the day it was set, the ring has sat in my jewelry box waiting for Samantha to become an adult. We were all gathered around the kitchen table as Sam opened her presents....a digital camera, a new shirt, a couple of pairs of jeans... She was delighted. As everyone started to leave the table, I asked them all to please wait because I had a special gift for Samantha....everyone sat back down and looked puzzled...what could this gift be? As I turned to Sam to present her with the small package, I started to cry....I couldn't even get the words out to explain the history of the gift....she grabbed the box with trembling hands and opened it ever so slowly. When she saw the ring, she too started to cry..(As a matter of fact, everyone had a tear in his eye) truly was a unique mother-daughter moment..and one I will never forget... I guess I did good......I only wish I could say that about all my parenting skills......

Sunday, November 23, 2008

As you may, or may not know, I'm a graduate from THE Ohio State University. It's a phenomenal institution known for it's medical research, agricultural breakthroughs, veterinarian college, countless exceptional programs and a little thing called Big 10 Football! As a girl from a small town in Rhode Island, I couldn't comprehend the greatness of this football team until I attended my first football game at Ohio State in the shoe. (it's now closed, but when I attended Ohio Stadium was a horseshoe!) It was awe inspiring. The fans, all 65-thousand of them, are completely out of control. (today the stadium holds more than 110-thousand!)Tailgating starts the night before and the alumni are far crazier than the students! And win or lose, Ohio State fans know how to celebrate or drown their sorrows. I've done my share of both! But regardless of how well the Buckeyes play, the entire season hinges on 1 vital game: Michigan!! Ohio State can lose every game of the season, but a win against Michigan erases all those losses. And vice undefeated season up until the Michigan game can be wiped out with a loss to the Wolverines. I was fortunate to watch Ohio State beat Michigan 3 out of the 4-years I was there....and craziness ensues. It's a feeling like no other, a rivalry unsurpassed by even Florida-Florida State..... .. This past Saturday, I plopped myself in front of the boob tube to watch my Buckeyes take on the blue and stops for every true Buckeye fan during this game....(as well as every Michigan fan!) The first quarter was tenuous and I was doubting my Buckeyes could pull off the win...but then the 2nd quarter started and it was all downhill for the Wolverines... The Buckeye intercepted, recovered fumbles, sacked their quarterback, ran back punts for 85-yards and just crushed Michigan. It was an incredible feeling for any Ohio State alumni...and of course, it gives all of us the most obnoxious bragging rights against any Michigan fan (sorry to my dear Michigan know who you are! ) The final score 42-7 doesn't really represent how well Ohio State played...or how badly Michigan played...but at least for the next few days I can gloat! To add insult to injury....The win not only clinched a 5th-shared or outright Big Ten championship for Ohio State under coach Jim Tressel, but it also was the 5th-consecutive win for Ohio State over Michigan – a first in 119 seasons of football!!!! Oh yeah, maybe I'll be an obnoxious Ohio State fan the whole week!! GO BUCKS!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Horse Heaven

For many years, my husband has encouraged me to do something for myself.....a release from the daily stresses, the children, my schedule, etc...For whatever reason, I have always ignored those urgings..maybe it's motherly guilt, Italian guilt....whatever, but everyone else has always come first....UNTIL NOW!!!! Call me crazy, but I have finally done something just for me. A release that provides exercise, fun, love and solitude (if desired). You guessed it...I got a horse!! He's magnificent! Black Jack stands 18-hands, (as you can see by the picture, that's extremely large. I'm 5'7" and he towers over me! The 2nd picture is of Black Jack with my youngest, Caroline!) He's as big as a barn, but as gentle as a lamb. In a word: perfect! I have always enjoyed riding, an activity I began when I was just 5 years old! But when I went to college, my favorite pastime fell by the wayside. After college it was work, than marriage, children and family. As you probably can relate, "life got in the way." But now I've decided to take the selfish approach. My children are old enough to fend for themselves and my husband tells me I need something to do besides clean the house!! Since Black Jack just arrived, I've only had the opportunity to ride him twice. He's like riding a cloud! His trot isn't harsh and jarring, his canter is as smooth as silk...and when it's just him and's awesome. No screaming kids, no barking dogs, no TV, phone or other annoying electronic device....just me atop this magnificent creature and the sounds of the world around us. It's solitude at it's finest. I have found my inner sanctum from our crazy world and it's big, black, white and loving. I'm in horse heaven and I think I'll stay here for a long while......

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Patriotism was overwhelming following the 9-11 attacks. It seemed almost every home in America proudly displayed the flag. But in recent times, you'd be hard pressed to find the American flag, unless you're passing a Post Office or a car dealership! This weekend, I had the opportunity to witness the epitome of airshow showcasing some of our military's finest aircraft, all to honor the veterans of our great country. (Kudos to the Visiting Nurses Association and its volunteers for presenting the airshow in Stuart) The runway at Witham Field was teeming with aircraft from every branch of the military: Navy, Air Force, Marines and Army. Everywhere you looked, you'd spy a man or woman proudly wearing his/her uniform, looking crisp and sharp, despite the South Florida heat and sunshine. And all those military personnel were eager to answer any question anyone sent their way. I attended with my husband Tim (a former Navy man) and my cousin, Michael (a military aircraft admirer). We managed to secure superb seats and parked ourselves for 4-hours of pure pride. From the Barn Stormers and parachutists, to the Wing Walkers, the F-4, the F-15 and the awesome was awe inspiring. There's nothing quite like the sound of an F-15 screaming past at 300 miles an hour, or an FA-18 climbing straight up to the heavens, full burners. Our military has some incredible aircraft, that when flown superbly, can only bring goose-bumps! The crowd loved every maneuver, every roar of an engine and every daredevil act. It was an event that made you feel proud to be an American. It was inspiring. So come on, this Veterans Day, show your patriotism and let old Glory wave its red, white and blue in your front yard.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Doggie Destruction

As you may know, I'm a huge animal lover. As a child, I dreamed of becoming a veterinarian, but somewhere along the line the "radio bug" bit me and I gave up on becoming a horse doctor. (no regrets) So to appease this inner dream, I have always surrounded myself with lots of date: 5-dogs, 2 cats and a pony (my daughter's). The pet in the spotlight today is our newest addition, Bella, a 7-month old Great Dane. I have endured many puppy antics in my life, but Bella apparently wants to be the record holder. Sure, she does the usual puppy stuff: digs holes, chases the cat, rough-houses with the other dogs, but in recent times she has tried to claim first place in bad behavior. In the past 3-weeks, Bella has gone on a 1-dog destruction path. It started with the leather couch in the family room. I came home to find it armless! Bella had eaten the arms right off the couch...right down to the wood.....not 1, but both arms. There were pieces of leather, wood and foam everywhere.. When she was scolded for her behavior, she looked at me with those big, brown, puppy dogs eyes and pleaded for forgiveness. I forgave her instantly. A few days later, she attacked my beautiful upholstered chair in the living room! Again, I came home to fine pieces of my favorite chair strewn around the house. And yes, again, Bella was scolded and disciplined for her bad behaviour. But being the softy I am, she was once again forgiven. How could I be mad with this adorable animal? One that's so loving and cuddly? Over the next few days, Bella continued her eating frenzy, munching though a leather love seat, 3-feather pillows, 2 area rugs, 3 shoes (of course the most expensive ones!) and a cocktail table! To date, our living room has 1-chair , the family room is down to 1-couch and I've replaced the other items. New furniture will wait until Bella grows up! So the question is: when is enough, enough? When do you say, okay, I can't handle this destruction're out of here!! I've pulled my hair out trying to train this beast and we've tried every method (I'm not a big proponent of caging an animal for 8-hours a day) to stop her from eating the furniture. There are chew toys galore in my house, ranging in every shape, size and material....she's played with constantly, she always has companionship from the other dogs and she's doted on by the entire family. And just when I think I'm at wits end, ready to ship her out to some other loving family, she comes and sits down next to me, puts her head on my shoulder and covers me with kisses. Or she lays down next to me in bed, snuggles up and cuddles like a small child. The ultimate in unconditional love. To me, that's priceless. I figure by Christmas, we'll be sitting on the floor because Bella has eaten the rest of the furniture. My Christmas wish list will then contain just one item......a big cage for Bella!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

OMG.....Cookie's Sudden and Tragic Demise

It was a tough weekend at our home....on Friday afternoon, when my youngest daughter came home from school, she discovered that her beloved hamster of 3-years had eaten his final alfalfa cube...Poor Cookie had taken his final spin on that squeaky, annoying wheel. She found him lying comfortably inside that little plastic wheel, the final resting place for our 4-legged puff of fur. I thought his resting place was quite fitting, since he had lived most of his life running wildly inside it from 12 to 5am every day! And I felt terrible about Cookie's, not because he passed, but because I felt relief when I realized he had gone to that big hamster haven in the sky....relief knowing that I would never have to hear that incessant squeaking again...relief that I wouldn't be the one cleaning out his cage (it could smell awful), relief because I knew I didn't have to be the one to place him inside his play ball and watch him run around like a psychotic animal in the kitchen, bumping into things, only to start his mad dash again.....relief because I knew I wouldn't have to check his food and water dispensers everyday.... But like all good mothers do.....I feigned remorse!! Yes, we took Cookie and placed him in a nice box filled with soft towels and buried him in the backyard. It was a lovely service...we all said our goodbyes and then gently placed him in the ground. We even made a makeshift grave marker out of colored stones and we all said a prayer. I explained to my youngest that Cookie was in a happier, peaceful place where there are hundreds of wheels for him to run on and an endless supply of hamster treats. She seemed to handle his death rather well, since 5-minutes after the memorial service she was out playing with her friends. But me...the Italian guilt set in and then I felt badly about my "no remorse" period. I actually realized I missed that little annoying as his upkeep was, he was always sweet, gentle and yes, loving. Every morning, he'd greet me at his cage door and step into my awaiting hand. He was always very friendly....he never bit me and never peed on me (that's a first for any hamster we ever had!) So today (Sunday) I found myself in the backyard at Cookie's grave site. I said a prayer and laid a flower on his grave. A small token of my appreciation for the little, furry pet who only wanted to love and be loved. Regardless of how annoying I may have found his upkeep, I will miss that little, furry guy...BUT not enough to buy a replacement!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Ghosts, Witches, Nuns and Spots!

Our "Simply Wicked 2" Party on Saturday night at Bradley's in downtown West Palm was a huge success. Hundreds showed up to dance, drink and strut their stuff in their incredible costumes. I decided to go a little over the top. Bill Ryan had mentioned that I should go as Cruella De Ville from 101 Dalmatians.....after some thought, I figured it would be a perfect costume. I secured the talents of by bestest friend, Teresa, to handle the make-up and hair.....she's incredible when it comes to hair and make-up ....I picked up my costume and threw in all the accessories, bejeweled cigarette holder, spotted handbag, black high heels, black stockings, a red and black necklace and earrings! BUT, the make-up and hair were the key....I needed to look like Cruella....Teresa did not disappoint. After about 1-hour in her chair, 3 layers of pale make-up, a pound of face powder, fake eyelashes, a tube of mascara, a can of "freeze" hairspray, a can of white spray-on hair color, a can of black spray-on hair color, bright red non-smudge lipstick and then another can of "freeze" hairspray...I was ready!! I even scared myself!..... My husband, Tim, was a real sport, donning a nun outfit with a little bit of smudged lipstick thrown in for the effect....We were ready to take on Clematis Street and Bradley's! ....As we strolled along Clematis, little children saw me and ran for cover... some cried, some screamed, others just stared in fear! I felt terrible for being this frightening mess, but at the same time I knew the costume was better than even I had imagined. My husband, unfazed, held my hand and walked proudly by my side...What a guy!! As we entered Bradley's, I couldn't wait to see the expression on every one's face. Danny was the best..he just stared in awe! Bill was thrilled that I had taken his suggestion and Deena was amazed at the make-up! I was amazed at how HOT it was...I think I lost 5-pounds! (that' a benefit I wasn't banking on!) I also learned that when you wear a costume, that's character's personality takes over! I found myself being more evil than usual and enjoying scaring the children! I was Cruella!! Her persona had taken over and I relished in it.... Yikes....who knows how many people I ticked off.....Maybe next year, I'll go as "Glenda the Good Witch" from the Wizard of Oz...then again...forget that....evil becomes me!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pole Dancing, Belly Dancing and JUGS

Pole Dancing, Belly Dancing and more!
Last night, we all attended the "Just Us Girls" event at the Marriott in West Palm Beach. I have to be honest, I attended with trepidation. Spending a night with all women, doing womanly things didn't thrill me. (I'm a real Tom-Boy!) Was I ever wrong! I had an awesome time chatting with new friends, learning how to belly dance, pole dance, make jewelry and so much more. The wine tasting also helped! I think I wore a path in the rug between the ballroom and the wine tasting room down the hall! I found myself fascinated with the entire ambience.....watching all these other women having a great time was contagious....I look forward to next year's event!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Lola's Brush With Death!!!

As you may or may not know, I'm an animal lover. Always have been , always will be....which is probably why I have convinced my family we need 5-dogs, 2-cats, 1-horse and a hamster. With this many animals comes challenges: the constant cleaning, the vet visits, the hole filling, the pooper- scooping, the snuggle time etc. But our little pug, Lola Frank, threw us a curve the other night. She came in the house from playing and fell on the floor, not moving! I freaked, the kids were hysterical and the other dogs were confused. Poor Lola Frank's head was twice its size, she was listless and having trouble breathing. (see the above pictures) I immediately knew she had been bitten by something, but what was the dilemma. We rushed her to the vet, (of course it's 9 at night and those emergency fees starting racking up before I even arrived at Dr Weigand's office). He took one look at Lola Frank and knew she was going into anaphylactic shock!..... (Anaphylactic shock, the most severe type of anaphylaxis, occurs when an allergic response triggers a quick release from mast cells of large quantities of immunological mediators histamines, prostaglandins, leukotrienes leading to systemic vasodilation, associated with a sudden drop in blood pressure and edema of bronchial mucosa, resulting in bronchoconstriction and difficulty breathing. Anaphylactic shock can lead to death in a matter of minutes if left untreated.)....I feared we would lose our little girl....she spent 3-nights in intensive care, her systems was flushed 4-times and still no great improvement. We were still baffled as to what bit her....Dr Weigand has narrowed it to a poisonous snake, but what kind? As luck would have it, a few days later I stumbled upon a baby rattle snake near the pool!! I had found the culprit.

Yes, rattle snakes are quite prevalent in South Florida and snake bites occur most often in October than any other month of the least that's what the experts told me! I called the vet and he decided if Lola wasn't better by the following morning, she would receive a blood transfusion, followed by at least 4-5 vials of anti-venom...Ka-Ching!!! The anti-venom costs $350 a vial!! ...I prayed for a miracle. The following morning, the vet's staff was getting Lola prepared for her transfusion. They flushed out her system and waited until 9am to make a decision. At 8:45am I received a call at the radio was Dr Weigand's office....with an update on Lola. ..The words are as clear today as they were 4-days ago....Lola has made a miraculous recovery! She's up, running around, happy and a lot healthier! No transfusion, no anti-venom....She's was going to be fine!!! Lola came home 2-days later and has been to the vet for a check-up everyday since. Each day she gets better and better and maybe by next week her blood levels will return to normal. The point of the blog is a warning to anyone who has a pet. Snakes are every where and your dog or cat's curiosity will get the best of him. Watch our for these slithery little demons....they can cost you your sanity and your wallet!!

Our litte Lola Frank is almost back to normal!

Monday, October 20, 2008


This past Saturday night I had the pleasure of being invited to ride the zamboni after the first period of the Florida Panthers-New York Islanders game. An opportunity I have dreamed of for years. I remember as a child watching with awe as that big machine "cleaned" the ice for the Boston Bruins. I thought it would be so cool to be able to make the ice "like glass" for the players. What power!!

So Saturday night, I arrived an hour early at the Bank Atlantic Center for my big ride. My kids joined me to witness the event. Actually, they thought it would be adult riding in the jump seat on the zamboni! What could I be thinking? Mom, come's reserved for kids and now you're going to ride on the zamboni?" You're taking a kids place? How dare you....

So, at the appointed time I met Terry (a nice woman in the Panthers marketing department). I took my youngest daughter, Caroline, with me, who at 13, wanted to see this from the ground level. We were joined by another couple with 2-small children. I soon learned the 4-year old boy would be riding the 2nd-Zamboni for his birthday present! We were all ushered to the bowels of the Bank Atlantic Center to meet our designated Zamboni drivers. The conversation lingered on the rides and how small children are selected every home game to ride the Zamboni.....again, how dare I steal a child's spot.....The time arrived...the Zambonis were fired up (2 are used to clean the ice) . The little boy proudly took his spot sitting next to the driver on the yellow Zamboni. The driver of the 2nd Zamboni (the purple one) looked at me and said..."so who's joining me?" I faltered, looked at the huge smile on that little boy's face, watched my daughter look with wonder at this massive machine and made my decision.... "Go ahead Caroline, that seat's reserved for you!" She beamed with delight....As the Zamboni took the ice, I stood "ice-side" watching my youngest get the thrill of her life....a once in a lifetime opportunity that I gladly passed along to my daughter. A sacrifice that made me smile with joy...a warmth that only a mother knows. Yes, the Zamboni is an awesome machine, but as the guidelines state, that passenger's seat is reserved for the children of South Florida. I applaud the Florida Panthers for giving kids this unique opportunity, one that will stay with them for the rest of their lives....and one I will remember till the day I push up daisies!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The 10-things I want to do before I push up daisies!

The movie " The Bucket List" started conversations across the country...what do you want to accomplish before you die? The odds are you've had similar conversations with your friends, spouse or family. This morning on the show, we all shared our lists. Here's mine, in no particular order:

1. Get a Master's degree in marketing

2. Write a book about my trials (literally) and tribulations in radio

3. Learn to play at least 1-song on the piano

4. Visit at least 1-major landmark in every state in the country

5. Be a zoo keeper for a day. I love animals. I always wanted to be a veterinarian, so this would satisfy that dream gone by the wayside.

6. Watch my children graduate from college and get married

7. Bottle and commercially sell my homemade spaghetti sauce (grandma's recipe passed down through the generations!)

8. Live in Italy for at least 6-months.

9. Ride a horse that competed in the Olympics. I just want to see how awesome it is to ride an animal that's worth more than my house!

10. Own a pet cow! Yes, I love this stupid, adorable beasts. And no, she wouldn't EVER be lunch or dinner!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


We have been assigned this wonderful blogging experience. Let's be honest, I'm the oldest one on the show the dinosaur of the computer age. Ohh don't get me wrong, I can get my way around the computer to do the basic things like email, finance, cut & paste... BUT NOW I have to share my thoughts!

Here goes:
I'm the only one out of the Jennifer & Danny Morning Show that had to get a lesson on how to do this. Think I feel inadequate right now? But thank goodness I have Jennifer Cartwright (computer guru) to help me. Okay, she is younger and smarter and she knows her way around a computer like I know my way around a stable. Yes I like horses. So here I am... actually blogging. Okay, that's enough for today.. I've taxed my brain and my computer prowess, I need nap time to regenerate and tackle this new task with piss and vinegar tomorrow.

Stay tuned...