All posts by max

How to run windows applications and programs on linux using Wine, Crossover & Playonlinux

How to run windows applications and programs on linux using Wine, Crossover & Playonlinux


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Crossover mac windows

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Wine, Crossover, Linux

If you are running linux as your operating systems, you can use and rely on free open source softwares almost for all the purposes. Some examples are Openoffice which is popular software provided by Sun microsystems and is compatible with MS office. However there are certain applications on windows that are so popular that finding substitute for them is very difficult.

In this hub i will explain, how to install and run programs designed for windows such as MS office on linux. There are basically two ways in which you can do it by using..

Wine (free software)
Crossover (proprieatary, non free software)
Playonlinux (free software)

A windows application utilises the DLLs (Dynamic Link Libraries) provided by the windows operating system. To run the same application on mac or Linux, it needs the program to use some native DLLs provided as well as substituted DLLs. The above metioned packages provide the native as well as substituted DLLs to do so.

WINE — This is an acronym which satnds for Wine Is Not Emulator. This is an Open source project which has won many prizes in Google Summer Code Contest. Unlike popular belief it is not Emulator and so it does Wine does slow down the speed of programs. Wine can be freely downloaded from its website (search for Wine on google). It can be easily downloaded and installed on Ubuntu Linux from synaptic package manager. Once installed all the ‘.exe’ can b made to open with wine. The current stable version is 1.2.2 capable of running games and other popular windows softwares. It can also fully support MS office 2003.

The settings can be changed which can change the font size textures and other details concerned with th software.

Crossover — It is proprietary software provided by Codeweavers based on Wine and can run windows softwares both on mac as well as Linux. Crossover provided much more functionality than wine. You can run many application such as latest Internet Explorer and MS Office 2007 using this package. Many unsupported applications can also be made to run using without any issue using this package. Since Crossover is based on free software Wine, a part of the revenue is donated to wine project for its development when you buy any product of crossover.

Crossover is available in three versions.

Crossover Linux
Crossover Mac
Crossover Games.

The first two are self explanatory. Crossover Games are used to run popular windows games on Linux without any issue. You can run games such as GTA 3, San Andreas and GTA 4 on Linux. See the website for list of supported games. The greatest advantage of running games of Linux is that Linux kernel utilizes very less resources leaving most of the resources for the game itself.

PlayonLinux– Playonlinux is the front end of wine. Like Crossover it also utilses the DLLs of Wine and is based on this software. It is free to download and install. Ubuntu users can download and install easily from synaptic manager. Just remeber to include ‘third party softare’ in software sources in update manager. It also supports wide variety of games and applications with minimal or no issue such as GTA sries, Doom 3 , half life , MS office, Dreamweaver, Photoshop etc.

Speed– As already mentioned the above softwares are based on Wine which is not a emulator so there is unnoticeable or no change in speed of execution of the programs.

Negative Impact. With these applications it has become easy to run windows applications on mac and Linux. It reduces the cost by spending money on development of software targeted at windows only. However the major drawback of this is that, it discourages the development of softwares on non windows platform.

Your Choice

Which operating system you use ?

Windows and Linux
See results without voting

Playonlinux on Ubuntu

External Links

CrossOver: Windows emulator for Mac and Linux computers – CodeWeavers
CrossOver is a Windows emulator for Mac and Linux requiring no Windows license. Be Windows. On Mac or Linux.
Home – PlayOnLinux – Run your Windows applications on Linux easily!
PlayOnLinux vous permettra de jouer vos jeux prfrs sous Linux, et sans difficults.
WineHQ – Run Windows applications on Linux, BSD, Solaris and Mac OS X
Open Source Software for running Windows applications on other operating systems.

Funny And Embarrassing Stories About Medical Procedures

Funny And Embarrassing Stories About Medical Procedures

Can’t There Be Dignity with Medical Procedures?

I am beginning to think there can be no dignity with medical procedures and have decided just to do what I do best – laugh it off!  I recently had to have some procedures done because I found out that I had renal artery stenosis, and the story and comments below are directly related to that specific incident, though I’m throwing in a few from way back as well.  Might as well get it all out of my system so to speak at once.  In thinking further on it though, I’m thinking it should be mandatory to put some of these medical personnel through the same procedures – who cares if they don’t NEED them?  It would be good training – and let some of us un-dignified patients perform them! Maybe then they would have a look at how their ‘care’ is perceived to some of us more ‘delicate’ patients.

Photo Credit:  Flickr by Frenkieb

My Biggest Gripe

I know I have a lot of them – but the biggest one of all is that I work in medicine! I have ideas and values about how things should be done and I believe first and foremost comes the dignity of the patient. Heck – in death for sure – but how about when they are doing procedures on you? Give me a break! Okay – I admit it – I’m modest. Get over it! If I had wanted to be a stripper or taken up some other exotic profession, I would be doing it. However, I’m not – I’m an old lady housewife who doesn’t like exposing her body to strange people – even in an emergency. I can handle it – it doesn’t mean that I want to!

When I first started having severe hypertension, they proceeded to start lining up test after test for me and the first stop was a CT scan. I wasn’t concerned about it – except that I was having a lot of problems with my stomach at the time that all this started. Of course when I got to the hospital, I got the top-of-the-line evening wear called the hospital gown. I do not like having my rear end or anything else exposed and spend most of my time trying to make sure all points are secured just in case there is a windstorm in the hospital. In retrospect, I should have been more worried about my OWN windstorm.

This really nice looking male tech came to get me to take me back on the gurney so I could get shoved into the CT scanner and as my luck would have it, I was all gassed up and had nowhere to go. He was in a bit of a hurry apparently because the patients were stacking up like planes over O’Hare. If someone doesn’t rush me, I can manage to keep from farting but as my luck would have it – sorry – your time is up, madam….PHFTTTTTTTT – it just couldn’t be contained because someone was RUSHING me to transfer from the gurney to the CT table. Oh – you’re surprised? Geez – stick around for the encore – and by the way – I REALLY wanted to do that in front of a cute young guy you twit!

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Well, after that, I even dared to show my face again at that particular hospital. I had no choice – I luckily did not run into that particular tech again. I’m sure he was thanking his lucky stars. The next step though in the testing was the renal MRI and MRA – which I accomplished with no further gas explosions. He obviously caught me on a very bad day. However, then they told me I needed to come back and have interventional radiology on my renal arteries. Being a transcriptionist, I know these things and silly me thought it wasn’t going to be a ‘big deal’ to have someone stick a catheter into my groin. I guess on thinking about it, anything being stuck into your GROIN probably isn’t going to feel too swift.

I do have a very high pain tolerance though so that wasn’t really bothering me. I met the doctor and had a pleasant chat with him while he told me all about how if they needed to, they’d put stents in to keep the arteries open and then proceeded to lull me into a false sense of security about how he was HOPING they would not migrate and go somewhere else – like where, doctor? Into like my EAR or something? Good God – it is a wonder people have any procedures whatsoever with all this information. I’m pretty much not left with a choice, so I said to him pretty much go ahead and do your thing – hoping he brought his A-game!

At any rate, next thing I know, I’m laying on my back on a table with about 5000 monitors above me – I always wanted to be on TV but this was ridiculous. Of course, I had on again my standard issue evening wear – the hospital gown and nothing else. There are all kinds of techs and doctors buzzing about looking busy – and all of them but one is male. I admit it – I am a very modest person – they practically had to cover my privates when I had my babies because I just don’t think it’s wise to show that stuff off! It’s just me! Now that I’m an old lady, I especially don’t want people I don’t know gawking at that. Well, someone should have mentioned this to Sally Sunshine the Nurse I guess because before I could say ‘hi, how are you doing? ‘ (which should have been HER line), this stupid pretty young Victoria’s Secret model hoists up my gown and there I am lying stark naked for everyone to look at!

Oh my God doesn’t quite cut it! I wanted fervently to smack the gown right back down – unfortunately they had placed my left arm in a vice called the blood pressure cuff which was going off about every 5 seconds it seemed and crushing what was left of my biceps. I pointed out to them that I thought I was being strangled by the blood pressure cuff but they assured me this was ‘normal’ (in whose world?). Back to Ms. Victoria’s Secret – she whips out a razor as fast as you can say ‘holy crap’ and she is shaving – no one mentioned I was getting a bikini shave or anything remotely close to this – and of all things, she has the audacity to shave HALF! How am I going to explain this if I get into an accident? Do I get a card that goes with this shave? I am going to be looking like an idiot while this is growing out! The worst part of all was that she didn’t even give me a second to adjust. Just whip up the gown, zip – hair’s gone. Do we know each other well enough for this kind of intimacy?

At least she put the dang gown back down – and I’m turning beet red by now with all these people in the room – I feel like I’ve just been multilated and shown my private parts to a boatload of sailors! (Nothing against the other guys but come on – I expected a little wine and courting beforehand – NOT REALLY – but a little warning and leading up to it might have been a courtesy I could have used). If that wasn’t bad enough though here she came again – this time she whips down the top. Oh GOOD – let’s give them a good view of the old lady sagging boobs too while we’re at it! Please – humiliate me a little more because I haven’t been humiliated yet enough! I’m paying for this is what I kept thinking all the while! This new assault was in the name of putting the EKG monitors on me – if anyone was paying any attention, they probably would have noticed that I had 3 heart attacks during this process!

Whew – she covers me up again. By all that is holy, I’m so hoping that someone comes along and does this to her one of these days – and soon! She just goes nonchalantly back to her business like nothing ever happened – she never even SPOKE to me. How humiliating is that? I guess I got the distinct impression that I was just a number. Well, the procedure went on despite my embarrassment and no one seemed to notice. Thank goodness they were better at their technique than their manners – except for the radiologist muttering while he was threading catheters up my groin. Somehow, that just didn’t make me feel very at ease. I was terrifically happy though to not hear ‘oops’ .

However, when it was all over, they deployed this device into my femoral artery that is supposed to stop the bleeding – not cool if your femoral artery is gushing blood so please – feel free. Again with the exposure – but this time I really didn’t have a choice. Unfortunately for me, as would be my luck, the device failed. I heard the young male tech say ‘uh oh’ (never a good thing) and looked down to find him leaning over me with 2 hands on my groin. Now that is way too close to my you-know-whats for comfort – but again, what could I say? I felt that at that moment in time, asking him to remove his hands would NOT be in my best interests. However, as I’m laying there and he is exerting 40 frigging G’s of pressure on my old lady GROIN, I really was speechless. Here we are – locked in our intimate embrace – and all I could think of to say was ‘so – how about those Mariners ?’ What the hell was I supposed to say? I guess nothing would never have crossed my mind. At least I have manners!

You would think that was enough of an event – but oh no – after 20 minutes of this guy literally standing on my groin, it still didn’t clot so we went to the ‘bonus round’ – another 20 minutes of pressure – followed by an unbelievably huge device with a belt that went around me and exerted another frigging 40 G’s of pressure on my groin. I think it was no wonder that my entire leg was bruised to almost my knee afterwards – but hey – they stopped the bleeding.

However, in the midst of all of this, since I was supposed to be out of the vascular lab way, way sooner, my husband is getting totally freaked out.  No one tells him what is going on and he is pacing his little heart out in the waiting area.  When he can’t take it anymore, he finally pops in and who does he get but the Victoria’s Secret model.  When he asks why I’m still not out she reports casually to him ‘oh – that’s because they’re trying to stop the bleeding’.  BRILLIANT!  She definitely needs to be working in medicine – and maybe one of these days someone will donate a brain and she can be the lucky recipient!  My poor husband made such a scene that they finally had to send out a doctor – not to calm him but to explain to him what Clueless left out!

Moving on, my husband once had to have a lovely procedure called the barium enema, and since my husband does NOT work in medicine, I don’t think he really understood the ramifications of the word ENEMA.  It also happened that he was having this procedure at the hospital where I worked so he knew all the technicians, etc.  Well, I for some reason thought he knew what they were going to do and didn’t want to really belabor this to him so just kept quiet about it.  On the fateful day, he showed up as scheduled and proceeded to go through his little test.  I do not have words to describe what came out of his mouth when he got into the car afterwards!

Something like this – ‘Did you know that they were going to come in and shove BARIUM up my butt – in front of everyone?  And then did you know that they were going to tell me to hold it there?  Did you then know that they were going to shake the table all about and jar me from one end to the other?  And then tell me again to hold it?  And then did you know that they were FINALLY going to let me go to the bathroom and expel it?  And did you know that these people I have played basketball with and had beers with were going to be standing on the other side of the door while I BLEW UP THE ENTIRE COMMODE when all the barium came out?  It sounded like a nuclear explosion in there!’ 

Well, when he put it like that I guess I should have brought it up!  I just didn’t think to mention the gruesome details!  Then to make matters far worse, they told him after all that humiliation that the test was inconclusive – he would have to have a colonoscopy anyway!  Ah well – see – it had a happy ‘ending’ so to speak!

Over the years though, I have never been able to accept these little acts of I don’t know – embarrassment to the patient?  When I had an ultrasound for my third child, the doctor came in and literally ripped the sheet off me and came at me with the transducer.  Thank god that’s all he came at me with but STILL – I didn’t like lying on a cold table in the first place buck naked and when someone just walks in and whisks the drape off you – not polite!  Like I said – a little wine, a little working up to it….at least tell someone what you are going to do before you put them in a very awkward position! 

I had another doctor barge into my bathroom in the maternity ward and start talking to me – while I was trying to pee!  I don’t pee in front of people!  I especially don’t want people gawking at me while I’m doing ‘that’.  GOOD GRIEF!  He became highly indignant when I asked him to please step outside because I simply could not go if he was going to be in there!  He called me ridiculous and overly modest but then later when I emerged, I asked him if it would be okay if I came into the bathroom with him and carried on a conversation with him at the urinal – not so funny then is it, pal?  Like I’d be able to do it without fainting.

Summing It Up

I realize that medicine is a tough business – it is hard to meet and greet complete strangers and look at personal parts of their bodies – and not throw up sometimes. Or it must be hard on the nerves to work on people and do intimate things to them without acting scared or horrified that you’ve just cut the wrong thing for instance!

It’s probably not fun either to deal with sagging bodies, flatulent old ladies, and people who are terrified of having anyone do ‘things’ to their bodies – but come on. Dignity should start WAY before dying – we are not inanimate objects here. We are feeling, breathing people – we were before we came in to have a procedure and we are still people while we are having said procedure. At least have the common courtesy to think ‘what if I was lying on this table – how would I want someone to treat me?’ And they probably better hope I don’t decide to change professions at this late date and become a nurse – watch out if I happen to recognize some of them!

ER Video Part 2

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Other Audrey Moments

Dancing Fool Meets Do-Si-Do
Let me preface this whole Dancing Fool story with one very important fact. I now live in a redneck town of about 10-11,000 people. I have decided Im not overjoyed about it. It sounded good in the…
Holy Crap – Are We Dancing?
Having recovered from my experience at being too sexy for my skirt I decided to resume the meek and mild demeanor for work at…
Why I’m Not A Huge Fan Of Skiing
If skiing was a sport in the Comedy Olympics, I would have all gold medals! I should have known it was not going to go my way from the day I tried it. In all fairness to myself, I have to say that I have the…
Should Painting Be An Olympic Sport?
Okay so Ive already established that Im not the most graceful person on the planet but really painting? Can this truly be that dangerous? Should it be an event in the Olympics because of the…
I Could Have Been a Gymnist In The Olympics
With the Olympics coming up, I’ve waxed nostalgic about my wannabee days as an athlete. If only I had kept up with gymnastics, I have no doubt that I could have been a contender. Sure, Audrey, keep dreaming….
How My Husband Ended Up Wearing My Victoria’s Secret…
Men! Need I say more? If only they would learn! We spent quite a bit of time visiting in Central Oregon and once upon a time, they had a North Face Outlet store. Bob has the most amazing blue eyes I have…
Help! I’m Trapped In My Bustier And I Can’t Get Out!
First off – I never even HEARD of a bustier before we were planning my daughter’s wedding much less ever had one on. I am here to tell you, like so many things that I seem to get myself into, this was again…
The Day I Was Too Sexy For My Skirt
Ever have one of those days when you just can’t believe how incredibly HOT you must look? Well, I think I could count those days on one hand but when I was younger….. Long days past, in my 30-somethings…
Help! I’m Under The Bookcase And I Can’t Get Up!
I’ll tell you why – because I’m a sitting duck. I’m a veritable Lucille Ball going through life minding my own business and these things just HAPPEN. I do not go looking for troubles or ‘situations’ as my…

Plaigirism: Was J.K Rowlings Harry Potter a Stolen Idea?

Plaigirism: Was J.K Rowling's Harry Potter a Stolen Idea?

Recently J.K Rowling was accused of plagiarizing part of the
story in her popular epic, “Harry Potter.” After scowerig the web for
information on the supposed “plagiarized work” I found out the accusation is
coming from the fantasy novelist Adrian Jacobs’s in a 1987 book “The Adventures
of Willy the Wizard.”

It’s not that I disagree with the idea of plagiarizing being
bad. Of course, plagiarizing is a terrible thing; but what qualifies as plagiarizing?
It’s not like she copied any text, or slightly changed words in a part of his
text, and called it her own. If she did anything, she stole his idea without
giving him credit. But accusing her of even that is a stretch. How are you supposed
to know that you’re plagiarizing text if you’ve never heard of it before?
Someone may have had a similar idea before you; and you may have just not known
it. If you think about plagiarism like that, it’ll turn out that everything, in
one way or another, has been plagiarized. It’s ridiculous to think that two
people who’ve never interacted can’t have similar ideas on a subject.

Just look at how extensive the Harry Potter books are when
it comes to Wizards. She has basically written out every plausible idea behind
wizards living in the modern world. This makes it nearly impossible for someone
to write something new about wizards without it being “plagiarized,” according
to plagiarizing cases like this, at least. And how can it not be likely she has
written at least part of a story that is similar to something someone wrote
about wizards before.

Now, I doubt J.K Rowling did come up with every single idea
in her books alone. Not to say she has done anything wrong. But I think all
authors take inspiration from previous works—and I think that should be totally
acceptable. Authors should write a section in their novels that describe
previous authors, works, movies, or novels that they took inspiration from for
their book, to give those previous works credit.

Taking inspiration or even a
small amount of an idea from someone else shouldn’t be considered so “awful”
just moving on into modern literature; building on ideas of the past. Just like
scientists can’t get further without building onto previous scientific work;
how can we expect literature to get any further without building on? It’s not
like we scream “Theft!” when a scientist uses another scientists formula (as
long as credit is given); I think the same should be expected in writing.

The amount of damage this is already doing to J.K Rowlings
nearly spotless record is appalling, I’ve already read comments like this from
other websites:

“Wow, i looked up to her. what a jerk. i knew no one could
think of that on their own. she totally crushed my dreams.”

“After all the famous “Harry Potter” was stolen idea…? I
could not belive it…
Nowadays, anything can possible.”

“I have lost ALL respect for JK Rowling. I think of her as a
role model in literature.”

Even if she did steal some of her ideas, the respect for her
should not be lost. She spent countless hours writing some of the greatest
stories of our time. She created believable characters, plots; an entire new
world, out of nothing. I’m still a fan, and I think everyone else should be as
well; she hasn’t been proven guilty of anything anyways.

“Good writers borrow; great writers steal.”

Mini-relating fact: Did you know that a vast amount of Shakespeare’s ideas were “stolen”? It was accpetable and even encouraged in his time and age.

This is the statement from Bloomsbury (J.K Rowlings Publisher):

Rowling had never heard of Adrian Jacobs nor seen, read or heard of his
book Willy the Wizard until this claim was first made in 2004 – almost
seven years after the publication of the first book in the highly
publicised Harry Potter series – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s
Stone and after the publication of the first five books in the Harry
Potter series. Willy the
Wizard is a very insubstantial booklet running to 36 pages which had
very limited distribution.  The central character of Willy the Wizard
is not a young wizard and the book does not revolve around a wizard
school.This claim was first made in 2004 by solicitors in
London acting on behalf of Adrian Jacobs’ son who was the
representative of his father’s estate and who lives in the United
States. The claim was unable to identify any text in the
Harry Potter books which was said to copy Willy the Wizard.  This claim
is without merit and will be defended vigorously.”

Man versus woman

Man versus woman

Oh man


I’m singing … “Having my baby, (bang chica wing wing) what a lovely way of saying that you want my money. Having my baby … what a lovely way of saying that you want ALL MY MONEY. I can see it, inside you growing, and I already know that it wants to go to college.” (University!)

I can remember the day I was born. There was a bright light at the end of the tunnel and then suddenly I was in a fight with the doctor. He was beating me and I was biting him. The good old days.

Okay, let’s get this thing started. Man versus woman is like dog verses cat. You would think that the dog would always win but no, the cat has very sharp nails and a scent that we men can’t resist. That’s why we’ll get up a two in the morning and go off in search of ice-cream. If we want those kisses we all know they’re not free.

Let’s see where to start? It’s obvious that men have whosels and women have whathoosles. Vive la difference. But let’s take the simple act of announcing a hockey game.

Man says, “What a goal, the Leafs go up three to nothing (as if). There’s a fight starting what a fantastic game!”

And now a woman announcing the very same game.

“Oh, the guy in stripped pajamas has blown his whistle and now everyone is confused. Oh my, he dropped the puck and now this guy with some sort of stick is sliding down the ice pushing that round thing. Oh my goodness, he pushed it right in the bread basket and everyone is gone crazy. Now two guys are trying to kill each other in the corner. Why doesn’t someone call the police? This is madness!”

Do you see the subtle difference? It’s sublte but do you see it? It’s right there, no not there, over there. Yes that’s it.

If a woman is watching a movie when her hubby enters the room. What are you watching honey?”

“Shut the hell up I’m trying to hear this!”

Man trying to watch a movie when the woman comes in. “Yak, yak yak … (three hours later) Yak yak.

“What were you watching honey?”

“Hell if I know.”

Woman says, “You never listen to me, I may as well be talking to the door!” And the man nods and nods, oblivious.

It’s not that we don’t want to listen it’s just that they talk too much. Guy talks for 5 minutes and watches TV for 2 hours, a woman talks for 2 hours and watches TV for 5 minutes.

Oh BOO yourself.

Woman goes into the store and looks at a dress and says, “Wow, I think I’m gonna buy this.” Then she circles the store for 5 days before she actually buys it. Meanwhile, the guy is banging his head against the wall and sustaining brain damage, and the wonder why we don’t make any sense!

A guy walk in and grabs a pair of pants and he’s gone. Security!

Scariest four words coming out of a woman. “We have to talk.”

“Nooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” Oh, I ran out of exclamation points and I have to order more.”

And the scariest four words for a woman to hear? “We have no money.”

Men are inventive. It’s not unusual to find boogers on a man’s socks.”

And it’s not unusual to find a woman’s hand in your wallet.


A woman walks into a bar and she says, “Ouch.”

Man walks into a bar and says, “If my wife calls I’m not here.”

I gotta go; I can see that there are a couple of spots on my right socks that’s available.

Increasing Your Google Page Ranks Without Spending Money

Increasing Your Google Page Ranks Without Spending Money

There is no doubt about it. If you have pages on the web that you want visitors to go to then Google Page Rank matters to you. Google has a lot of power and as one of the leading search engines their opinion matters to web designers, site owners, bloggers, and writers all over the Internet. There are a lot of methods for increasing your Google Page Rank, and many claims for ways to do it for lots of money, but understanding how Google Page Rank works and building your site and traffic often does it well.

What is Google Page Rank?

Google rates all the pages it comes in contact with (or its bots come in contact with). To do this it runs your site and its statistics through a complicated algorithm and places it in a page rank from 0 to 10. 10 is the top of the scale and sites such as Google and Yahoo have a page rank of 10 where other sites rank lower. Sites such as Wikipedia and YouTube have 9’s and Hubpages itself rests at a 6.

While Google doesn’t tell anyone exactly how their rating came about, there are some things that we know. The more traffic you have, the more likely you will be to have a high page rank. This can be shown with sites such as YouTube, which has a ton of traffic. The second factor that is really important is links. The more links there are to your page, the higher it will be on page rank (although this isn’t quite that simple since Google will decided on how valuable your links are).


There are a lot of things that need to be considered when you are working hard to increase your Google Page Rank. The first is that your content matters. Sure the Google bot doesn’t care if your gramar is perfect, whether or not you spelled a word here or there wrong, or if you write an article that is 500 words or 5000 words. But there are a lot of things to keep in mind.

SEO. There is a ton of talk these days about Search Engine Optimization or SEO. This is because the Google bot does care about your key words, how often they appear, and what they are. While many claim that writing great SEO articles is all it takes, there are still more things to consider.
Writing Content for People. Sure you want bots to find you, you want them to index you, and mark your keywords. But you also want people to enjoy reading what you write. This is why it matters whether or not you have good grammar or work hard to catch typos and spelling errors.
Writing Content that Others Want to Link to. Traffic is important and because it is important you want to write high quality pages that are worth linking to. You want others to send traffic your way.

Content is the first step in the Google Page Rank process. Your site will do best if you have lots of good content on it. That’s why Hubpages continues to grow in page rank!


Traffic building always starts with your content. You can’t grow your traffic without having content. However, there are a few ways to increase the traffic to the quality content that you have out there.

Talk about it. This can be with your friends, family, or even others that you meet. Many people will be interested in what you do and if you have a website or a place you put content they want to know about it.
Business cards. Yep there are lots of times that you can hand out your business card if you take the time and a little bit of money to make some up (whether you are paying a service or making your own). These can help many people remember where to go and they may find it interesting later on.
Join online clubs, message boards, and forums that are related to your topic. Don’t just spam the site (no one likes spam or the people who leave it). Instead join in, make friends, and add your link to your profile. This way you can direct people who are interested in your site to your profile without leaving a link. This makes it more user friendly.
Add links to all your profiles. Most of us have a lot of profiles out there these days. Add your links to your MySpace, Facebook, and other sites were you have a place to add your info to. 
Use social bookmarking sites. You can use lots of different social bookmarking sites to easily link to special pages. This can draw in traffic and ratings to your site.

Building traffic takes time. Remember that it starts with quality pages and then goes from there. You can get lots of traffic from using your resources and working toward free advertising for your site.


Links are important to building your Google Page Rank. Google will evaluate each of your links to determine quality. The higher quality the site the better. This makes it important to note that spam links aren’t going to help you much.

The first important part of link building is content (does this sound familiar?). This is because if you have high quality content others will link to your material for you and do some of your work. There are also some good link building ideas in the traffic building section. Here are a few more to keep in mind.

Link different pages together as long as they go together. This is really important if you write on more then one site. Add links that might be of interest to your readers.
Trade links. Often other small website owners will trade links with you. To do this, choose sites that your readers might be interested in. Make sure you consider your readers. After all, if you have a blog about power tools, you aren’t going to want to trade links with my blog on beadwork and jewelry making. Most likely readers from my blog aren’t going to be interested in power tools and your readers aren’t going to be interested in beadwork.
Add links to the bottom of your e-mail. This is usually easy to do with a signature. Stick to three or less for easy navigating. This is a tip that may have worked better for traffic building, but these links still have some marrit here.

Link building is important, but often comes when you concentrate on quality content and traffic building.

Other Tips

Remember to focus on content and traffic. These things will get you where you need to go slowly but surely. You don’t need to find a way to cheat the system or work overly hard finding a magic combination. Instead, your hard work will pay off. Some other tips can be:

Update often. Updating your site, pages, and blogs makes them fresh. This is good for Google, but also good for your visitors. It is much nicer to go back to a site that has new information or pages then to go back to one that is always the same!
Allow comments. Whenever possible allow comments. This can build discussions, get your readers involved, get people coming back, and also looks like updates and changes to Google which can get your rank up there.
Reply to comments. Replying to comments can often get more comments and discussion. This is good and very important if people ask questions in their comments. Try to get your readers involved and working hard to comment. 
Ask your readers questions in the hopes of encouraging them to post. You can also open it up for discussion on your site with simple phrases.

Google’s PageRank and Beyond: The Science of Search Engine Rankings
Amazon Price: $10.90
List Price: $55.00

I am by no means an expert. I have been doing this a little over a year and watched my page ranks slowly rise. These things continue to work for me and others like me. Content is still one of the biggest keys out there! Don’t forget that your content is important.

*If you have more tips to add, I would love to hear from you in the comment section.

How My Husband Ended Up Wearing My Victorias Secrets Panties

How My Husband Ended Up Wearing My Victoria's Secrets Panties

Funny Story: How My Husband Wound Up Wearing My Victoria’s Secrets

Men! Need I say more? If only they would learn!

We spent quite a bit of time visiting in Central Oregon and once upon a time, they had a North Face Outlet store. Bob has the most amazing blue eyes I have ever seen and I am always trying to get the right “stuff” to bring out those baby blues. On our trip to Bend, we found THE jacket to die for and Bob as well simply had to have it. It quickly became his favorite of all time. That’s when the trouble started.

Weeks later, he has all but slept in his favorite jacket and decides it needs to be washed. I have up to this point now been doing his laundry for roughly 25+ years and have yet to have any laundrical disasters. But hey – for some crazy reason known only to Bob, he gives me the news flash that HE is going to wash his precious jacket and I’m not to do anything with it or even touch it. Well, if that wasn’t a slap in the face but I figured at this stage in our life, it’s best to just let go of the reins and let him ride free….or give him enough rope and stand back and watch what happens. Fine by me!

Picture by Audrey Kirchner – The Catalog I’m Hiding from Bob

How My Husband Wound Up Wearing My Panties

A day or so went by and I’m innocently sitting at work at my computer
processing files for our medical transcription business; Bob is out performing one of his parts, a 200-mile delivery jaunt that takes him all over the greater Seattle area to at least 5 hospitals and numerous doctor offices daily. About mid afternoon, he bursts into my office quite flushed and more than a little flustered whereupon he proceeds to pull out a pair of my Victoria’s Secret blue panties from his pocket. Well, first off I’m more than a little worried. I hear about this kind of thing all the time and although I don’t THINK my husband is a cross-dresser, it usually comes out of nowhere and the wives always claim “they had no idea”. Could I be one of these women?

I demurely ask if there is anything he needs to tell me and after a few beats of stunned silence he briskly waves THAT off – whew….dodged a
bullet there. “Oh don’t be ridiculous,” he says with great indignation.
“But then what are you doing with my panties in your pocket, if you don’t mind me asking the obvious, Bob?”

He proceeds to tell me all about his day; he has gone for coffee, he has run in at this hospital to pick up/drop off, this doctor’s office, another hospital; gone for lunch, run errands…on and on it went. I don’t think 20 stops would be an exaggeration and all the while he is oblivious. Finally, at his very last stop, the dry cleaners in our hometown, he is standing in line (it is a very busy shop) and someone taps him on the back.

He turns thinking he is going to be greeted by one of our friends perhaps or be asked a question only to hear a velcro-sounding “r-r-r-r-i-i-p-p” as in static electricity and something being peeled off. He turns the rest of the way to find a very nice-looking woman with
a pair of my Victoria’s Secret panties (in a matching blue I might add)
in her hand. She says trying not to laugh, “I thought you might want these somewhere else other than on your back”.

If only I had been there! If only I had a video of the moment when he
spied the panties in her hand and realized that they had been plastered
on his back all day long as he tooled around Seattle and environs! Oh if only! He was so utterly mortified he said he wanted to just bolt out of the dry cleaners and leave the clothes – as in forever. Unfortunately, pride and money won out and he stayed while everyone chuckled and laughed and he proudly stuffed my panties into his pocket.

The Moral Of The Story

Appreciate what you have! If your faithful wife wants to do your laundry, it’s a gift; get over it! No item in your closet is that important!

If your wife still wears Victoria’s Secret underwear after all these years and she can still look pretty good doing so, be grateful! It could have been a big-butt pair of white undies from JC Penney that would have taken up the entire back of the jacket; but then again something like that MIGHT just have gotten noticed before the day started!

There could have been a lacy bra plastered on there as well to go with the panties. No one apparently tells guys to check the dryer when they toss in something!  It’s not rocket science, guys!

Above all, value the beauty of a make-you-cry laugh and treasure the stories that make up your history together. I consider my 35 years with Bob the ride of a lifetime and worth every moment of laughter and tears.

Life is a ride – enjoy it!

The North Face Apex Boinic Soft Shell Jacket – Men’s, TNF Black, L
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Columbia Women’s Benton Springs Full Zip Jacket, Columbia Navy, Medium
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The North Face Denali Fleece Jacket – Men’s R Jake Blue/Bolt Blue, M
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The North Face Women’s Osito Jacket Bittersweet Brown S
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Columbia Women’s Benton Springs Full Zip Jacket, Black, Medium
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The North Face Men’s Khumbu Jacket TNF Black L
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The North Face Khumbu Jacket for Women Small TNF Black
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The North Face Denali Fleece Jacket – Men’s, R Charcoal Grey Heather/TNF Black, M
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Fruit Of The Loom Womens 6 Pack Hipster, Wardrobe Heather, 8
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Fruit Of The Loom Girls 7-16 Girls 9 Pack Cotton Hipsters, Assorted, 12
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Calvin Klein Women’s Metallic Chrome Micro Bikini Brief, Bare, Medium
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Calvin Klein Baby-girls Infant Dress with Panties, Pink, 24 Months
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Sexy Lace Briefs Panties Underwear – Black
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Sexy Lace Briefs Panties Underwear – Hot Pink
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Rare Editions Baby Girls Newborn Tiered Dress, Black, 6-9 Months
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Sexy Lace Briefs Panties Underwear – Sky Blue
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Enticing Top and Crotchless Panty Set Black
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Rare Editions Baby Girls Newborn Spiral Soutach Dress, Silver, 9 Months
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Sexy Lace Briefs Panties Underwear – Red
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They Did Not Call Bob To Participate

More Audrey Stories

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Funny Story About Sex: The Naked Truth
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Funny Story: The Fish That Got Away
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Favorite Funny Stories: Diving In – The Story of the…
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Help! I’m Under The Bookcase And I Can’t Get Up!
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How To Make A Chocolate Bomb
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When Making Dog Treats At Home Is It Wise To Post A Sign?
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Help! I’m Trapped In My Bustier And I Can’t Get Out!
First off – I never even HEARD of a bustier before we were planning my daughter’s wedding much less ever had one on. I am here to tell you, like so many things that I seem to get myself into, this was again…
Rollerblading – A Quick Look At How Not To Rollerbla…
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Who Knew Buying A Pair Of Slippers Could Turn Dangerous?
We regularly go into the ‘big city’ to shop on weekends because where we live, our largest store is Rite-Aid. On one particular visit to our nearby JC Penney, I found out that needing a pair of slippers could…
The Day I was Too Sexy For My Skirt And Other Delusions
Ever have one of those days when you just can’t believe how incredibly HOT you must look? Well, I think I could count those days on one hand but when I was younger….. Long days past, in my 30-somethings I…
Getting Emergency Medical Help – Another Comedy of Errors
I never would have believed yesterday that by the end of the day, I would be getting emergency medical help! At the end of a perfect Sunday, we were watching the Yankees beat the Angels and peacefully…
I Should Have Stuck With Sexy – The Sequel
Having recovered from my experience at being too sexy for my skirt I decided to resume the meek and mild demeanor for work at…

My Other Life Going To the Dogs

Audrey’s New Leash On Life

Party Dresses for Women

Party Dresses for Women

Cocktail Party Dresses for Women

See all 2 photos

How many times have you felt that your party dresses are not making the right impact you want to have? Well, dressing for a party is a bit tricky and very challenging task indeed. After all, everyone is coming up fully prepared to take the center stage so, if you have similar intentions, you are going to face a lot of competition and, naturally, you have to put in a lot of thought into wearing the right dress. Now, almost everybody will tell you that in order to get attention, you need to wear something different, stylish and attractive. However, if you’ve had enough with trying to find the perfect dress from the market, why not design an outfit of your own? This will ensure you are wearing something that no one else will and party dresses for women are the perfect candidate as they can come in any different variation one can think of.

Amazon Listings

Splendid Littles Baby-Girls Newborn Silverlake Stripe Dress and Bloomer, Pool Party, 3-6 Months
Amazon Price: $68.00
BCBG Maxazria Vibrant Silk Pleated Tiered Cocktail Party Dress
Amazon Price: $107.00
List Price: $258.00
Ezsports 1pc Women Asymmetric Cocktail Party club Evening Dress Sexy Strapless Dress Summer Skirt
Amazon Price: $19.15
BCBG Maxazria “Jane” Belted Silk Chiffon Beaded Evening Party Dress
Amazon Price: $168.00
List Price: $448.00
BCBG Maxazria Seductive Fitted Lace Overlay Cocktail Party Dress
Amazon Price: $89.00
List Price: $198.00

One great thing with designing unique and custom party dresses for women is that the process is easy and quick so you don’t have to invest a lot of time. Furthermore, it will give you an opportunity to show your creativity. To start things off, you have to get some ideas. A good idea will be to roam around and have a look at different dresses in some of the stores in your vicinity. Check out the shapes and overall lines and, if necessary, you can take a few snaps as well. After coming back home, you have to create an album or board where your favorite designs will be posted and you need to make sure to include attractive colors. If you consider yourself to be a beginner in these kinds of things, make sure to keep things simple. To give an example, making a one shoulder black dress on your own is much harder than making a normal casual dress, so keep that in mind.

Now, it is time to sketch your party dresses. Well, you may not have natural skills in drawing, but there are still many options left. For example, you can download templates from the internet. Your sketch must include sleeves, a neckline and other important outlines and keep in mind that the patterns are very important. You can get some good idea from local stores as a good seamstress will always combine multiple patterns to create the ideal party dress. Sometimes, you simply have to modify the patterns to suit your purpose.

More Amazon Listings

Nine West Dresses Women’s Mini Waffle Fit And Flare Dress, Honeycomb, 4
Amazon Price: $99.00
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AGB Women’s Sleeveless Dress with Inverted Pleat, Blue/Taupe, 16
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C&C California Women’s Slub Jersey Tank Maxi Dress, Mirage/Blue, Medium
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Nine West Dresses Women’s Mini Waffle Pleated Dress, Vintage Navy, 4
Amazon Price: $99.00

Once you have decided upon the pattern of your dress, you will have to decide upon which fabric you are going to use. Generally, the fabric of party dresses for women should complement the pattern. After determining everything, you can start sewing. This will allow you to make any late changes. Of course, if you are not quite sure about your sewing skills, visit a good seamstress as, even if making party dresses for women on your own may seem like a fairly easy task, no one can do it like the pros!

Pink Party Dresses for Women

See all 2 photos

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bridgessarah 2 years ago

These party dresses look so cool! Very stylish and fashionable. I like especially the French Connection Women’s Dani Crepe Dress in bronze. A nice slim line, I will be ready to party!

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Frozen Peanut Butter and Banana Pie

Frozen  Peanut Butter and Banana Pie

Through the years Peanut Butter has taken on, way more of a meaning than a simple sandwich spread. Now, we’re working it in to both sweet and savory recipe’s. It’s used in Asian savory, Asian sauces, many of us love the classic peanut butter cookie. I’ve seen it worked in to muffins, cakes and pies. Both with and with out chocolate. Peanut Butter was first created somewhere around the 1890’s. I’ve added banana’s to it. If you’re a peanut butter lover, you will be happy to know, that peanut butter itself is very healthy. But healthy as it is, you may be unhappy to know, it s high in calories and fat. Good fats, but calorie laden. Some recipes, like this one are hard to make low fat. Lower fat, maybe. But definitely not low fat. So just enjoy it, but be careful, not just in one siting. : )


1 tub (8 oz.) Cream Cheese

1/3 cup of peanut butter, either chunky or creamy

1/2 cup sugar

2 cups thawed Whipped Topping

1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping

1 or 2 ripe banana’s depending on size

1 Graham Cracker Pie Crust (6 oz.)

1/4 cup mashed ripe banana

2 additional tbsp of caramel ice cream topping

1/4 cup of crushed pecans for garnish

Beat cream cheese spread, peanut butter sugar, and mashed banana in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Add Whipped Topping; mix well.

Spread caramel topping onto bottom of crust; then top with banana slices to cover bottom of cruse cover with cream cheese mixture. Freeze 4 hours.

Drizzle with Two Tbsp caramel, and nuts,

It doesn’t get any more delectable than that…..for now that is…. ; )

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Peanut Butter Snickers Cheesecake Brownie Pie Recipe!!!!
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?OMGosh!?Frozen Peanut Butter Pie with Velvet Hot Fudge Sauce?Yummly!!! :)?
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Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust
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Comedy And Funny Dog Stories: How To Avoid Being Pulled Like A Human Weedeater

Comedy And Funny Dog Stories: How To Avoid Being Pulled Like A Human Weedeater

Funny Dog Story: How To Avoid Being a Human Weedeater

Once upon a time, there were two dear sweet black lab puppies who belonged to yours truly.

These two beautiful angels were found on a 4-lane road after they had been ‘set free’ by their owner (only one of numerous times). Finally on a gorgeous 4th of July day, not being able to stand it any longer, my kind husband brought these two 6-week-old puppies home to me in my son’s bat bag.

You see, they had seen them on the way home from his baseball game in the middle of the road yet again, wandering aimlessly and he couldn’t stand to think of their fate. As luck would have it, they landed in just the right place…in the most capable hands and lap of one Audrey Kirchner who already had two dogs but who was bound and determined to find a good home for these orphans who were repeatedly let go to fend for themselves. We all know where this is going, right?

Molly and Mariah (I had to name them of course because how would I know them apart?) ended up living happily ever after at the Kirchner Hacienda because said Audrey Kirchner (and her family I might add) fell in love with them and their hopeful adopters never had a chance at getting their hands on one of them.

We had a lot of fun with these two dogs and here is just one day in the life of Audrey and her beautiful black lab friends.

See all 2 photos
After a swim and many years later
Source: Bob Kirchner

The Days of Being a Weedeater

Molly and Mariah were wonderful dogs though they got into their share of mischief. Time passed though and I worked with them diligently to train them to be obedient dogs. I trained them to be kind dogs. I nursed them through Parvo and then rehab’d Molly who we found had grade IV hip dysplasia at age 6 months and after 2 hip replacements. Can I pick ’em or what?

I was just in love with these dogs along with my other two but the labs were young and they needed a lot of exercise. After Molly’s surgery, she was basically a new dog (she should have been because what it cost, she could have had a motor and I could have driven her). But I digress……

The only caveat of her surgeries was that we needed to be careful of her hips. That meant no jumping in particular but running was okay and she was actually supposed to rebuild her muscles and get lots of exercise. I took her swimming at the lake and together as a family, we rehab’d that dog until you really wouldn’t know that she had started out with such severe problems.

During this time of course, our kids were growing up and we as a family were involved in everything from music to sports to dance. Our family though was a soccer family from day one and as a whole, we just took to the sport like fish to water. All of our children were involved in soccer on a fanatic level (or was that frantic). Even our visually impaired son Patrick played. It seemed only natural then that at the ripe old age of 38, I would decide that I too needed to get on a team and start playing ‘old lady soccer’ as I fondly referred to it. Even Bob played one season but we don’t refer to that as old man soccer; we refer to that particular episode as a ‘grave mistake’. That’s another story!

So in my quest to become athletically endowed so to speak, I took up all manner and forms of buffing myself up. I lifted weights, I rode bicycles, and I did something I had never done in my entire life up to that point – I jogged. Not that I was very good at it. I personally hate jogging. I could play soccer for hours and not notice that I was running but the idea of running down a road just because I was jogging totally defined insanity to me. It was a pain in the butt if you want to know the truth and I hated it. But I was hoping for that U-40 scholarship in soccer you know, so sacrifices had to be made. More days than I’d like to remember I found myself out literally beating the pavement, usually cursing all the way.

In an effort to make it somehow more interesting or perhaps less tedious, and being the ultimate multi-tasker of all time, I decided hey – why not kill two birds with one old lady and take the labs jogging when I went. They needed the exercise as they were always wound up and what better way to exercise them than to have them run alongside me? Wouldn’t it just be something for folks to see me, buff and in shape, running with my two beautiful dogs down the road? They would honk or wave at me and give me two thumbs up! At least!

Well, it went pretty well. They got their exercise and I got mine, although I have to say being buff is harder than I imagined. When you are not a runner by nature, it’s really hard to get in the groove so to speak. Maybe I needed an iPod to help myself along but unfortunately, that was way before such things and I was just stuck with two dogs and the street for companions.

Again, the ultimate multi-tasker that I am, on one gloriously beautiful fall day, we had a soccer game to be at in an hour. Bob was getting ready to head out the door and I all of a sudden had a brilliant inspiration that I’m known to have from time to time. Why not let him take the kids to the game and I’d just take Molly and Mariah for a ‘quick’ jog around town and end up at the game with them in tow? Then he could give me and the kids a lift home after the game. Didn’t that just sound like an athletic thing to do?  You betcha.

How I Became a Weedeater

I finished my jog around my regular route and I have to say, I’m really ‘dog tired.’ Enough is enough and staying buff was getting harder and harder all the time. It didn’t help that it was a rather warm Indian Summer fall day but I had brought it on myself after all. I was about down to my last half lung when I finally jogged into the junior high school parking lot with my two trusty black pals in hand (or in leash as it were). I was seriously looking forward to NOT moving for an hour and a half because I was definitely winded.

I walked them through the fields and spotted my family at the appropriate spot – game already in progress, and went over to join them. Watching the game for a few minutes, I became rather overwhelmed from all my exertions and having cooled down, I decided to just slip off my running shoes and have a little stretch-out on the ground to soak up the warm sun’s rays.

As it turned out, our middle boy was the one playing this particular day and as usual, everyone was chatting it up, partly watching the game, partly just catching up. Because I had the 2 dogs, I decided to sit down near the end line just in case there might be some folks who weren’t keen on two big dogs drooling on them. As I stretched out in the warm sun, I did think to myself ‘Self, it doesn’t get any better than this. Nice warm day, comfortable grass, two beautiful dogs, wonderful family, fresh air, good friends….’ I could have gone on and on but I’ll stop there. Needless to say, I was tired from my jog and I was feeling a little bit sleepy to tell the truth. So I just stretched out and tried to watch the game.

I was snatched from my peaceful bliss by movement – MINE – and I might add at an alarming rate. I had casually entwined the two dogs’ leashes around my wrist but as they started to move, they tightened around my wrist like a vise. I had been sitting up and leaning back but when they took off, I was suddenly yanked forward into a prone position on the grass and was now belly down on said grass and I was no longer where I was supposed to be. Instead, I was being yanked and pulled face first down the sideline of the game by two 80-pound labs who had decided they wanted to go play with the dog that was running across the field – conveniently at the OTHER end of the soccer field. Holy crap on a cracker – where was the brake?

I began to yell ‘STOP’ but they obviously did not know this word because we kept going. I saw people jumping out of the way and I heard lots of laughter as I tried to regain SOME amount of decorum and composure but let’s face it. It’s pretty hard to be cool when you’re being dragged behind two dogs that obviously don’t speak English – and all you can think of is ‘Do I have grass in my teeth?’ Some kind soul finally realized that I might be in a bit of a pickle and reached out and grabbed hold of the two dogs bent on reaching the other dog in 5 seconds flat. I swear my arm had grown 5 inches on that side and was throbbing like a sore tooth.

About this time, I realize that the game has stopped. I vaguely heard the referee blowing a whistle but I just thought it was part of the game. But of course not, just my luck – he had apparently seen me start to become the human weedeater and decided to call the game until it was determined if I had in fact bitten off a good mouthful of turf.

I could hear my child’s inward groans from where I lay on the grass – ‘Oh my GOD – does she HAVE to be my mother? I try and stay invisible and just be normal but then she has to go and do something ELSE!’

In my defense, how was I to know that these two stupid dogs were going to take off like a runaway train and take me with them? I wasn’t prepared – that is my defense to this day and I’m sticking with it! Had I known, I would have handled it differently I have no doubt.

At least the dogs lost interest in the dog that had flown by and were now sitting calmly albeit winded (they were after all pulling quite a dead load there for a bit) on the sidelines. Everyone was laughing and talking – ‘Hey – remember me? Does anyone possibly care if I’ve broken my wrist or if I have chunks of turf in my teeth?’ Finally a man steps out from the crowd, my hero Bob, and comes towards me where I still lay prone on the ground like a supplicant.

The referee has the nerve to ask in front of everyone ‘Are you okay, ma’am?’ Geez – add insult to injury you little snot-nosed teenager! ‘Of course I’m okay – I do this all the time!’ I retort and just to prove it I stand up. Or I try to stand up. I’m a bit shaky from the ‘ride’ and as I stumble to get to my feet, realize of course that I have grass stains all over my tee shirt and my sweat pants. In retrospect, I was thrilled that my pants stayed ON while I was being dragged full force down the sidelines. THAT would have really messed up Patrick if his mother had been pantsed in public!

Bob is shaking his head as he extends his hand though and he starts to laugh. ‘Always very entertaining, Audrey – I must admit you put on quite a show!’ He nods to the referee as if to say ‘carry on’ while he proceeds to take the dogs for me while I try and rearrange my underwear and other various and assorted pieces of clothing. I hear him whisper something about ‘Kinda reminds me of your boogie boarding incident ya know?’ Hmmph – I get no respect.

So I had a little grass burn on my thighs for a few days – and some grass stains I never did get out of my clothes. I also had to apologize to my son for making the referee stop the game and for making a spectacle (yet again) of myself. Truly though – in all fairness – it was totally not my fault. I am the victim of some cosmic jokester up there who just loves to see these things happen to me. Why me? I have no idea but I imagine it’s because I can take a joke. If you had my kinda luck, wouldn’t you just get used to laughing with them?

See all 2 photos
Mariah and Molly as Pups
Source: Bob Kirchner

Funny Dog Story: How to Avoid Being A Human Weedeater

The moral of that story is several fold. Never wear gray sweatpants or light colored tee shirts if you happen to be me. You are better off in ALL BLACK. No grass stains!

Second moral of the story – never have leashes wrapped around fingers or wrists. I seem to really have a problem with this and still I do it. If a dog bolts on you much less TWO dogs bolt on you, you have no way ‘out’. You are along for the ride and it may not be pretty.

Lastly, if you are with me, you may be in for a bit of excitement. If you’re related to me, I can see why you pretend you don’t know me sometimes. I don’t do these things on purpose you know. They just HAPPEN. Get over it!

You would think that I learned my lesson to pay attention to the labs though after that ‘drag’ of an experience, but unfortunately the next summer while at a baseball game that I had jogged to yet again with my two trusty pals, I collapsed into a folding chair to rest for a bit. Again, I forgot that the leashes were attached to me and when Molly and Mariah spotted a little boy behind me they wanted to go ‘visit’ I was pulled over backwards in the chair banging my head on the ground, fortunately missing the metal bleachers by millimeters. They again stopped the game and this time, it was my oldest son who was humiliated – as he put it – so badly that he would never be able to go back to that school.

He did in fact return to the school. Thankfully, most of the school personnel and people in our town knew all about me and cut my children some slack. In my defense, it’s not like I made the news or anything!

All I can say is, those were the good old days.

It Could Happen to Me

Works for Me!

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It MIGHT be the Shoes

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Should I Find Out the Gender of My Baby?

Should I Find Out the Gender of My Baby?

Pregnancy becomes a time of a lot of different decisions and sometimes it feels as if they are piled up on us. One decision is whether or not you are going to find out the gender of your baby. Technology makes it easier to find out the gender of the baby then ever before. But should you?

The truth of the matter is that it is up to you. No one else can make the decision for you and there are pros and cons to each side of the argument. It often comes down to the factors that are most important to you.

The Reasons to Find Out as Soon As Possible

Makes it easier to pick a name. Choosing a name can sometimes be hard work. Knowing whether the baby is a boy or girl often cuts down the decision making and debating in half. You only have to read half of the name book and work to get your favorites approved by the other parent for one gender, saving time and energy.

Buy gender specific clothing. If you walk through the baby section at any clothing store, or even at Wal Mart you find lots of pink, lots of blue, and a tiny bit of yellow and green. The sad thing is that most of the yellow and green are still fairly gender specific with bows and lace or trucks and cars. Finding a good variety of clothing that isn’t gender specific is a challenge.

Have a gender specific baby shower. Often times, baby showers are done during the pregnancy. Family and friends love seeing mom when she’s big and often times feeling a bit miserable. It is exciting and fun to celebrate the coming baby. However, planning a baby shower isn’t easy when you don’t know the gender. Plus gifts are often gender based, such as pink blankets, blue clothes, or even a gender specific car seat!

*One option though is to have a baby shower after the baby is born. This can be a lot of fun as well since everyone can pass the baby around and friends or family that have to travel can come and meet the new little one. This also solves the boy girl present issue and allows you to choose a few neutral items and clothes and get a lot of gender specific things later. You can also choose hand me downs that are neutral or can be neutral. Blue pants don’t have to be just for a boy, match them with a white shirt and a yellow sweater and it could go either way!

Decorating the nursery. Decorating the nursery is something that is good to have done before the baby arrives and is often a more enjoyable process when it is done for a specific gender. However, you do have some options for planning a neutral nursery.

Hoping for a boy or girl. Some parents don’t care either way. They are just thrilled to be having a baby. However, there are lots of us that would like a specific gender. While knowing the gender of the baby early won’t change the fact any, it does help one prepare for the event. They can get used to the idea and are usually thrilled to meet their child rather then disappointed that it isn’t the gender they wanted.

Bonding with your child. Many parents have a hard time bonding with their baby. It just doesn’t seem real. This can be especially true for a dad who isn’t as much a part of being pregnant. Knowing the gender can make it easier to bond with the baby. You can talk with him and her easily, call them by name, and feel like you are getting to know them all before they actually arrive.

Help ease older brothers and sisters into excepting the new baby. On a similar note, it can be easier to help older siblings ease into the idea of being a big brother or sister. You can tell them stories about what it will be like to meet their little brother or sister, sharing a specific name can make the baby more real, and they can talk to the baby as well.

Like to feel like you are in control. There are some people who like to be in control and don’t really like surprises. Pregnancy (and parenting) offer a lot of surprises and a lot of times when it doesn’t feel like you are really in control. This is one thing that it is easy to control (as long as the option is available!).

Helps with locating hand me downs. Hand me downs are a lot easier to locate when you know what you are looking for. Maybe your best friend has a six month old girl who is getting big and growing out of her little items. If you have a girl you can use the items. Or if you have a child already you can know if you can use those things again.

Gender related celebrations can be planned. Often times, having a baby can mean a lot of things. If you have gender related celebrations that will need to happen after the baby is born, it is easier to handle these things before hand. Most commonly this includes a circumcision ceremony (bris).

If there are gender based genetic issues that could mean medical problems, it can help to know the gender. Boys have a bigger chance of getting several genetically passed down disorders and diseases. For those that have to deal with these things it is often easiest to be ready to deal with them ahead of time. Some of these can be hemophilia, duchenne muscular distrophy, adrenoleukodystrophy, and fragile x syndrom. These things can be passed on from a mother to her children through the x chromosome. Girls have two x chromosomes and unless the father has the problem will become carriers. Boys on the other hand, will have the problem if they get an x chromosome from their mom that has the issue because they get a y chromosome from their dads.

There are also some issues that are more likely to effect boys then girls but aren’t directly related to the x and y chromosomes. For example, club feet run in my family. This has to do with the feet turning in or out severely. My brother was born with ridged club feet and no heel formations. This meant that he spent the first four years of his life in casts and having surgeries. I could be a carrier and while girls can have it (my aunt and two of my cousins had mild cases that were corrected with special shoes), boys are more likely to have severe cases. My mom was very worried about her grandson both before and after he was born.

Why not? It’s still a surprise. Many people will argue that you should save that surprise for the time of birth. However, whenever you find out it can be an exciting time and it can make the whole family, friends, and even strangers that you meet who ask you excited.

My Story

I had an emergency ultrasound at nine weeks. Everything turned out to be all right, but the insurance company would only pay for one ultrasound unless something was wrong. Well, we went through most of the pregnancy with nothing going wrong.

My husband firmly believed that we were having a son and we named “him”. We went around calling “him” Marcus though many told us that we would probably be disappointed when “he” finally arrived. For me, I couldn’t imagine being disappointed should our baby turn out to be a girl.

Any how, July 19th came with labor pains. After having them most of the day and watching them get closer and closer we went to the hospital. It was three in the morning when we arrived (really the 20th already). The labor didn’t progress, but the baby’s heart beat had had a few irregularities so they sent me for an emergency ultrasound at five in the morning. We were asked if we wanted to know. We did, but no matter how hard the technician searched, she couldn’t see enough to offer a guess.

Everything was fine and I was sent home with a sleeping pill. The doctor said I would take the pill, sleep, and probably wake up without contractions and he would see me in his office in a few days. Well, it just didn’t work out that way. I went home, took the pill, took a shower, and sat on the toilet to have my water break. We picked up my mom on the way to the hospital and had a baby very quickly. I remember my mom yelling out, “Oh my gosh, he really does have balls!”. We had a beautiful baby boy!

The Reasons to Wait

The surprise. There is no doubt about it. Being pregnant is full of surprises and for some the ultimate surprise is to have the doctor say, “It’s a boy!” or “It’s a girl!” after all the hard work of birth is getting close to being over. This is the biggest argument for waiting. Many couples look forward to the surprise and enjoy the process of not knowing.

The tradition of it all. Women have been having babies for a very long time. They go through the process of being pregnant and of not knowing if they are having a boy or girl. For a long time now pregnancies have been finished with a midwife or doctor declaring the gender of the baby. Saving it for later can be a continuation of tradition.

Making the last few weeks of pregnancy more bearable. The last few weeks of pregnancy are often the hardest. You want to be done being pregnant. You are big and awkward. Sometimes the surprise of waiting can make it a lot easier to bear.

Hearing the words. Hearing the words often brings about a sense of wonder and for many this is what they have been waiting for. It is the sunshine after the rain (labor).

Keeping the fantasies of your preferred gender alive. Most parents fantasize about their coming baby. Whether they just enjoy thinking about it as a baby that could be a girl who looks like…will do…or a boy that plays… or they have a gender they would really like, many parents like keeping the fantasies alive and the dreaming going as long as possible.

Annoying the relatives. Many relatives are annoyed that you are keeping this secret from them! They want to know the gender and many couples who have chosen not to find out the gender declare that they have enjoyed annoying friends and family.

Concern about mistakes. Mistakes can and do happen. The ultrasound is the most common way of finding out the baby’s gender and it is also the hardest one to determine the gender with. Sometimes a baby’s position is such that it is hard to figure out and some technicians make mistakes. Other options include genetic testing. While these methods are usually only used if there are genetic issues or it appears that there may be problems with the baby lab mistakes occur occasionally and have been known to cause issues. While planning for a baby without knowing its gender can be a little harder, there is an issue when you think you know the baby’s gender and buy pink dresses, paint the nursery pink and purple, and have a “it’s a girl!” baby shower only to find out “It’s a boy!” is quite the surprise.

Discourages emphasis on gender. Some parents like a more gender neutral approach to the matter and not knowing the gender can help keep down the girly girl things or the overly boy things. You can then choose a unique color pallet or one that includes pieces of all the colors.

Not having the ability to choose other wise. Sometimes parents can’t choose to know. It could be that the insurance wouldn’t pay for another ultrasound and it is a pricey test to pay for on your own such as in my case or it could be that the baby was in a position or crossing his or her legs and it isn’t something the ultrasound technician can tell you.

Ways to Find Out the Baby’s Gender

There are three tests that you can get which often reveal the baby’s gender. The most common is the ultrasound or sonogram. However, this is the least reliable test to reveal the gender but is a common method. The other options are amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling. Both of these tests are usually reserved for those at higher risk of genetic diseases or birth defects. However, both test results will also offer finding out the gender as an option. These tests are reliable as long as there aren’t any lab mistakes.

Did you/do you want to know the gender of your baby?

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Old Wives Tales

There are lots of old wives tales. If you don’t know the gender of the baby then friends, family, and even strangers are likely to offer their opinion according to their experiences or old wives tales. These are fun and can be humorous. Most are harmless and their are even a lot of tests online for finding out the answer. These can even be fun if you know the gender, just to see what they say. As long as they don’t involve chemicals (one involves rubbing drano on the belly which is dangerous) then have fun withit.

Remember that they aren’t always going to be right. I had an older woman who was a friend of the family say it was a girl because I was carring “her” high and all over. The nurse said it was a boy because of “his” heart beat and one woman in the store (who I had never met before) told me it was a boy because my butt looked big. I took three online quizzes which told me that my baby was a girl and so far all of the predictions that my husband has made have been right and he said it was a boy. In the end, not all of them could be right!

The Decision

In the end, each couple has to make his or her own decision. It isn’t always an easy one and there are some great reasons for chosing either way. It all depends on what is most important for you and many feel that finding out the gender of their baby ahead of time is easiest.