Sunday, June 29, 2008

Savannah Day 4: It's a Twister!

For today's activity we were supposed to have a "cassette guided walking tour", but because I'm a big trouble making bitch, I basically told the people in charge the night before that no one wanted to do that, so instead we had more free time. We decided to go to the Savannah history museum, which was pretty lame, but I had to pretend it was at least semi-cool for the sake of the girls.

Then after lunch we went on a riverboat cruise down the Savannah river. As the boat got back to port was just when all the trouble started brewing. It began pouring down rain. Our original plan (pre-rain), was to do some more shopping on River Street and go buy pralines at the Savannah Candy Kitchen. The rain let up just as we were getting off the boat, so my travel buddies and I decided to try to make it to the candy kitchen (or at least as far towards the candy kitchen as possible.) It was fine except that there was a black sand (from where this came I'm not sure) pelting us. Luckily the wind was at our backs so we just got sandblasted in the back rather than in our face. We made it to the candy kitchen. Just then my cell rings. It's one of the other chaperones. Apparently there is a tornado warning and we have to stay in a "safe location" for the next 45 minutes. Ahh...stuck in a candy store (with an adjoining ice cream parlor) what can be better. Poor Hannah though had spent all her money. When the coast is clear, we emerge from the candy store and walk about 5 feet when a tornado siren sounds. Are you kidding me? Everyone else seems to ignore it, but since I'm a responsible adult in charge of two minors, we duck into a peanut store...because nothing goes better after sweets than a little salty. Everything was fine.

For dinner we went to the Lady and Son's (Paula Deen's restaurant), which was fabulous. Lots of yummy southern food. Though I've learned that I'm not really a big fan of collard greens. I guess I'd eat them again, but I'm not going to hunt them down. I also got really hyped up on sweet tea and peach cobbler. We didn't see any of the Deen family (though some of our group had run into Bobby Deen in the shop the day before).

After dinner was another swim party, which was basically five 13-year-olds hanging on me. FUN! At one point, I accidentally held one of the girls under water and when she told the lifeguard that I was trying to drown her, he said "I don't really blame her."

Then at around 11 pm, Hannah, Molly and I decided to have an ice cream, and wheat thins party. Then went and got a pint of Ben and Jerry's down in the hotel shop and we had wheat thins from earlier in the day. At one point, I was making little ice cream sandwiches with wheat thins and Fudge Brownie ice cream...pretty good actually. We also tried Mr. Dipolo's barbecue sauce on the wheat thins, but that wasn't as good. We made a slight mess with the chocolate ice cream on the bed spread, but I'm sure that will come out in the wash...right?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Savannah Day 3: The Birthplace

Juliette Low's birthplace was pretty much the entire reason for the trip to Savannah. I'm also pretty sure that if Juliette Low had not been born in Savannah that the city's tourism industry would be pretty much non-existent. For those of you that don't know about the birthplace, Girl Scouts need to make reservations two years in advance to have a tour and program there. We also had to make up a "pinning ceremony" which we didn't find out until we were in Savannah. I was chosen to be the adult advisor to the girls that were writing the ceremony. (Because I'm cool like that). PAINFUL! They had decided they wanted to "write a song" to go with the ceremony. Have you ever had 5 middle school girls together trying to write a song. With a little coaxing, they wrote a few new versus to an already existent song. Phew!

In the morning, we were scheduled to do a program called "Fabric, Frills, and Fashion." Or something like that. It was all about fashion through the years (corsets, and bustles and all that.) We got to try on corsets...well, the girls were supposed to try on the corsets and somehow I got drawn in too. I think the corseting lesson had the opposite effect that it was supposed to. Instead of seeing how constricting and uncomfortable they were, most of the girls thought they looked pretty good on and I can see corseting making a comeback in the Harrisburg area. Even I wished the lady would have pulled it tighter (perhaps using the foot in the middle of the back method), thought Girl Scouting tends to frown on broken ribs. We did decided the corseting someone to death would be a pretty cool method of murder. Just hook the strings up to a winch and crank away.

After lunch we did a tour of the birthplace (snooze fest) and the ceremony. For dinner we went to the River House Restaurant which I wasn't real impressed with (except they had AWESOME pecan cookies). We introduced some of the girls to letterboxing. They had a fun time with one of them as we had to distract a street artist whose stand was right beside where the box was hidden. Then we went on a ghost tour. It started off a little rocky as the tour guide starting yelling at some of the girls about their use of a Ouija board. After that she was great. We have one girl on the tour that swears to this day that a ghost cat rubbed against her leg during the tour. Hey, who am I to say that it didn't. I didn't have any ghosts touch me or anything, but I did end up with a pretty weird picture. If you notice, there's a branch or something on the tree that is glowing bright orange. Who knows!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Savannah Day 2: I Want To Be A Pirate

Before I get into my pirate dream realized, I have to give brief props to the BASS outlet shop in Hershey. My mom bought me new luggage for Christmas. Well somewhere between my trip to NYC, and Savannah, the rubber outer part of one of the wheels split open making it unable to roll. My mom took the suitcase to the Bass outlet store in Hershey, no receipt, nothing and walked out with a brand new suitcase. That, my friends, is customer service!

Ok, now onto Day 2. I have a feeling this post is going to have a lot of picture with it, but pictures are always good, right? First stop of the day, a tour of the River Street Sweets Candy Factory. Yeah CANDY! We ate lots of delicious samples of salt water taffy and pralines. Yum! You haven't really had taffy until you've had it directly off the taffy pull.

We had a little time to shop along River Street before lunch which led to my single greatest purchase of the trip...TAH DAH

A high heeled cake server!!! YEAH! What brilliant genius thought "you know what would makes shoes better...if we could serve cake with them." I don't know why, but I also really like that it has a detachable magnetic heel. I wish it came with other heels, so that you could change them depending on what type of mood you were in...but alas, I'm stuck with the zebra print one. Because every type of cake goes with zebra print. (I also blame this object for the reason I had a note after getting home from the trip in my suitcase saying that they found it necessary to open and inspect it.)

After lunch, we strolled down to the Ships of the Sea Museum. I have to admit that when I saw this on the schedule I thought "yawn" and had flashbacks to my AP English trip to the National Cathedral in high school. But I was happily wrong. We took part in a program called "Rogues and Rouge: Women Pirates." Don't even get me started on the name. We learned all about women that were pirates, and I decided that I want to be a pirate when I grow up. But there are several different types of pirates, I'm going to be like Rachel Wall. Unlike most girl pirates that dressed up like boys, Rachel was the damsel in distress pirate. She would stand on the deck and flag other ships down for help and then when the crew boarded, her crew would jump out and take all their booty and stuff. I would definitely be like her. Because I could be pretty and bad ass at the same time (like Angelina Jolie). We also got to make cool pirate jewelry. (A cake serving shoe and pirate jewelry all in one day!! Are you serious!)
We had dinner at the Pirate House restaurant. Where there was some he/she pirate (still unsure on that one) roaming around being all creepy while we were eating. Their website says "world famous"...really not that impressed. Then we went on a carriage tour of the city and learned all the useless knowledge of Savannah (it was originally a colony for debtors) and saw all the useless sites (the steeple that the feather in Forrest Gump floats around).

Monday, June 23, 2008

Savannah Day 1: The Travel Buddies

Since we had a group of teenagers traveling with us it was necessary to have some sort of chaperoning system in place in order to ensure that everyone made it through the airport, etc. (And also what group trip would be complete without color coordinated T-shirts!) I was assigned two "travel buddies", Hannah and Molly. They are sisters and though people seem to get them confused ALL the TIME, I don't really see it. I have to say that we got along fabulously, since it was pretty much decided that I have the mentality of a twelve year old. (You'll probably see why later on). I think other people on the trip were jealous of me and my travel buddies. On the drive down to BWI, we played "Apprentice" Mad Libs...which was interesting. (I got fired for being a bad suitcase). We were not very inventive when it came to nouns and tended to use things like road, truck, sign, tree, telephone poll, etc.

It was interesting traveling with some girls that had little or no travel experience because I got questions like "when we get to atlanta do we have to move our luggage to the plane going to Savannah?" Cute. They were also absolutely in awe when I went out of our hotel room and returned with a bucket of ice.

We checked into the hotel (they had free cookies in the lobby!! Always a bonus for me) and went up to our room. In our room, waiting for us was this:

Along with a pack of cookies, a bottle of water and a note which read.

In the package was a bottle of Paula Deen's barbecue sauce. Now I don't know who Mr. Dipolo is or why his cookies and barbecue sauce were in our room, but we didn't really care and decided if they were still there tomorrow evening then they were rightfully ours...they were.

After settling in, we had a pizza and pool party. Because who doesn't love to eat a lot of pizza, soda and cookies and then go for a swim. Don't worry all you Girl Scout familiar people, we had the proper quota of lifeguards and water watchers.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

So Much to Blog, So Little Time

I have so much to blog about, but my mom's in town, so its necessary to spend the obligatory bonding time with her. I have so many pictures from Savannah, so stay tuned for: Mr. Dipolo's barbeque sauce, the perfect way to kill someone, and being stranded in a tornado....that's my teaser.

In a short point, from Father's Day that I didn't blog about before i left. I went to visit my grandfather at his "assisted living community" (we're all on the same page about what that really is correct?). Anyway, as we were waiting for the elevator to take us to the dining room, I started reading the schedule of activities for the week: Happy Hour at 3pm, Pinochle, Crafting Time, and Fitness with Wii...wait? What? Man, I would pay to see those old people playing Wii for their fitness time. My mom doesn't even understand Wii.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

My Runway Debut

It was obvious that watching all of those America's Next Top Model episodes paid off because I totally rocked it and am expecting calls from talent scouts any minute. Though I have to admit the stage like runway threw me off a little at first as I was expecting more of the catwalk type set up, but I adjusted (as all good models must).

They had a local cosmetology school doing makeup and hair. My situation was a little difficult because my first outfit was a very country club-esque silk skirt and white button down and my second outfit were "I Love Girl Scout Cookie" pajamas. The make up was first, and when I told the girl I was doing pajamas she decided on a very "natural" look. Perfect. Everything was going swimmingly until she pulled out the lavender lipstick. She applied it and then turned to her colleague and asked "how does she look." From the look on the other girl's face, it was not pretty, but she very politely said "I think it draws too much attention to her lips" and my make up artist chose a more neutral tan color.

Then it was onto hair. Again I explained the outfits that I was wearing, but then also added "and my hair doesn't hold a curl unless its cemented in." The girl nodded and suggested pigtails. Pigtails with the pajamas maybe but not with the skirt and shirt combo (on a side note, some girls in my office and I had decided to do "pigtail Friday" but then Friday came and we kinda forgot.) So instead she did a high ponytail and a massive wall of bangs (higher on one side than the other). I looked like a cross between Elaine Benes and an 80's music video. Because apparently pajamas must just scream, please puff up all my bangs! I know that's what I always look like when I go to bed. I spent about 15 minutes before the show trying to smash them down in the bathroom. I know there's photos floating around there and am just dreading the thought of them making an appearance.

Friday, June 13, 2008

I'm Leaving On a Jet Plane

Well, kids, Monday I leave for Savannah, GA on my Girl Scout pilgrimage to Juliette Low's birthplace. Actually any excuse to get out of town, I say HELL YEAH! Since I'm going with a group of teenage girls and would rather my laptop not turn into My Space/Facebook central, I will be not be posting next week. Though I'm going to be in my first Girl Scout fashion show at the mall tomorrow and will be attending the Colonial Craft Fair on Sunday so if anything interesting happens and I have time, I may post prior to my departure on Monday.

In an episode of poor planning on my part, summer outreach for work and all my mom's quarterly visit to PA both occur the day I get back. I must be slightly stressed about that because I've been having my tooth falling out stressed out dream. Though I don't feel stressed out. I also scratched myself on my forehead right between my eyebrows.

Because it uncannily resembles the letter "J" and since I watched a TV movie last week on Sybil, I've been telling people that one of my alternate personalities decided to label me. Anyway, I'll take lots of pictures and post them upon my return.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Harrisburg Mall

I've thought about blogging about the Harrisburg Mall several times, but the blog needed to include pictures, and I was admittedly a little fearful of getting kicked out of the mall for taking pictures. That happened to a friend of mine when I was in middle school. She was taking pictures for a school project and security escorted her out of the building. Today I saw something though that I just HAD to blog about.

I rarely go to the Harrisburg Mall. There are several malls in the area, and the Harrisburg Mall attracts two main types of people. 1) Harrisburg city people. (Yes, i live in Harrisburg, but not actually in the city.) In fact there was a shooting outside the mall about a couple months ago. 2) Rednecks. There is a big Bass Pro outdoor shop as one of the anchor stores. It looks like a lodge, and you can buy everything there that your little outdoorsy heart desires: deer stands, boats, cross bows, bait, and other things that I don't even know what they are. In fact, they have shopping carts that look like NASCARs that kids can ride in.
If that's not redneck, I don't know what is. Since I fall into neither of these categories, I choose another mall to go to. BUT Bath and Body Works is having their semi-annual sale, and since Bath and Body Works is my crack, I go to as many Bath and Body Works as I can find. Hence why I was at the Harrisburg Mall this morning. In the end of the mall where the Bass Pro shop is, they have a bunch of stuffed wildlife. Such as this bear.
No that is not in a Natural History Museum. That is in my mall. At one point, they have a little pond, that has fish in it. Not goldfish like a normal mall pond, but trout or carp or some other game fish that I can't identify. There are some rocks stacked up in the middle with a waterfall running down them, and a giant stuff bear on its hind legs at the top of the waterfall. (You're jealous your mall doesn't have this as well. I know.) Today, I saw a woman manage to cross the pond, scale up the rocks and was having her picture taken next to the bear. In the words of Danielle "people are stupid."

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The Coolest Thing EVER
I'm a complete sucker when it comes to kids with fundraisers. Probably because I had to sell for EVERYTHING that I was involved with when I was little (school, Girl Scouts, soccer, band, dance, etc.) and know how much it sucks. The most original fundraiser I ever saw was when I lived with my parents in Indiana, and we had two teenage kids ring our doorbell that were trying to raise money for a church trip. The one kid says "if you give us five dollars for our trip, I will break an egg over my friends head." I've never seen my mom rush to get five dollars so quickly, and it was totally worth it too! But yesterday I bought...

SMENCILS. Yes, that's right I said smencils. There are multiple cool things about smencils. 1) They come in little vials that look like they should hold an antidote or a super virus in it. 2) There are lots of scents: I got tropical blast, root beer and chocolate. 3) The organization makes really good profit on them. 4) They are REALLY scented. You can smell them as soon as you open the little vial. The root beer is almost too root beery. Also, the scent is supposed to last up to 2 years! I'll let you know in two years if its still scented. 5) It's made out of 100% recycled newspapers which I am all about! I'm really excited to use them. I think I want to use them at my training tomorrow and see how many people start sniffing around going "do you smell chocolate?"

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Things that Annoy Me

My left turn signal is broken. AAAARRRGGGGHHHH!!!! On my way home from the gym today, I noticed that when I put my left turn signal on the light on my dash didn't blink, and it also wasn't making the turn signal noise. So I got home, turned my turn signal on, and jumped out of the car to see if anything was going on. Nope. Nothing. It's officially broken.

I still hit it just out of reflex everytime I go to make a left turn, and when nothing happens it really pisses me off. I started to think about making a purposeful effort not to signal a left turn just so it wouldn't make me mad, but thought this might be problematic then when it gets fixed. The other thing that annoys me about this is that I'm now "that guy" that doesn't signal when turning. I want to shout out my window "I'm really sorry. My turn signal is broken. Really!" Maybe I'll start using the hand signals out of my window that they teach at bike safety carnivals. Or maybe I'll just try to get it fixed tomorrow.