Friday, April 30, 2010

A Crazy Little Thing Called Blog: #10 More Questions

It's been a while since I posted about the ins and outs of blogging. While I'm in Ohio visiting family, I thought I'd ask a few questions I'm wrestling with and see if you have some answers-- Or questions of your own.

Here are my questions:

1) My sidebar-- I use Blogger. When I try to move the various gadgets around (via drag and drop) on my sidebar, they won't "stick".... they jump around and "land" in random places on the sidebar. Is there a trick to lining the gadgets up the way I want them???

2) When I'm at home on my Mac I have no problem typing a New Post, but, when I log into Blogger on a PC, my font changes to Chinese. I have no idea why. Note: I can comment in English, I just can't write Posts. Any clues why???

How about you? Any blogging questions that have been bugging you? Leave your question in the comment box and we'll see if we can get some answers.

Thanks a million. I'll be back Tuesday to catch up with you all.
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
For more Blogging answers and Q&As Click HERE
Photo Credit: Jeff Metzger

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

I Surrender

You've heard me rant about Beloved Husband's annoying Blackberry-- the one that is never "off". And, I've gone on the record numerous times vowing not to be "plugged in", connected or online 24/7 ever again. I even refuse to Tweet and deleted my Facebook account (completely), although I rarely ever looked at it.

I remember vividly the day-- nearly three years ago, when I danced a happy dance after canceling my Blackberry account after I retired thus no longer being connected to my email-- and clients-- non-stop. It was a thrill that still makes me smile.

My clients were great but I was not all that crazy about them emailing requests at midnight or when my Blackberry would buzz at some ungodly hour in the U.S. when it was daytime overseas. To me, retirement meant not having to constantly check my email. Ahhhh, it was paradise.

For a while.

Since those initial fabulous months of peace and quiet, "social networking" exploded and it appears, if I ever want to be in touch with my family again, I need to get back on the bandwagon and get connected, otherwise their lives will pass me by.

So I did it, gawd help me-- I bought an iPhone. Yes, my husband smirked as I sheepishly showed him my new gadget while I "ate crow" about being joined at the hip to the World Wide Web again. He's rather enjoying the teasing, I might add.

When I sent my first text to my niece it was easy to see she was laughing as she responded with a "welcome to the real world" message. Now the younger generation in my family is waiting for my Twitter name and continue to remind me of all the family pictures I'm missing without a Facebook account. But, the flurry of text messages from them congratulating me on my newest acquisition has been a nice way of keeping in touch, even if I have no idea what most of the abbreviations they're using mean.... yet.

What pushed me over the edge and into the Apple Store yesterday? I'm heading back home to Ohio on Wednesday for the week and my arthritic hands are too sore to schlep my laptop along plus um*well*ahem*cough*I*hate*to*admit*it*dang* the idea of using my folks painfully slow dial-up connection and ten year old computer to check emails exhausted me just thinking about it.

So I bit the bullet and jumped back in with a shiny new white iPhone with a candy apple red case and not a clue how to use all the features it claims to offer. I'll take an Apple class when I return for the stuff the kids in Ohio can't teach me. But in the meantime, the nice teenage (or at least he looked like one) salesman at the store hooked me up so I can easily check my email, bless his heart. Oh, and he taught me how to actually answer the phone too.

I won't be around much this next week but I'll be reading blogs on my iPhone.

Have a great week and happy social networking. (Ugh, I can't believe I'm saying that.)
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sundays In My City #32 - One Year Later....

Unknown Mami hosts a great Sunday theme inviting YOU to get out and take pictures of your city and/or Sunday to share with the rest of blogland. Click HERE to see Unknown Mami's Sunday in her City today.

I told you about my brother and his bride who skipped off to Las Vegas for a beautiful and romantic wedding-- that my Beloved and I crashed. You can read about it HERE.

On the eve of their one year anniversary, I thought I'd flashback and show you a couple of pics from my Sunday a year ago.

We met up with them here-- At the Wynn, a fab hotel that treated them like a King and Queen....

It's right next door to their sister hotel, Encore, that has lots of delicate mosaics to enjoy....

The Bride was absolutely stunning and the Groom was pretty darn handsome, if I do say so myself....

We rode in a huge stretch limo way out of town to a park with views as far as the eye could see...

No, we didn't make them walk back to the hotel we rode in the limo again. And when we got back to the hotel they were....

Happy One Year Anniversary to my Brother and Sister-in-Law!

How's your Sunday?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: Joanna Jenkins
Be sure to check out the other Sundays In My City participants-- Or better yet, show us YOUR Sunday/City. Click here.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Ahh, the sound of blissful silence. What more could a girl ask for?

After eight weeks of head-banging noise, starting at 7am sharp, today I was greeted with silence and that can only mean one thing.....

The repairs on our sinking pool and deck are finally complete and every last contractor, jackhammer, table saw, rock pounder, air blower, vacuum cleaner, power drill, nail gun and slamming port-a-potty door have left the premises. In their place I swear I can hear angels singing!

Regular readers know this saga has been going on since last August, when out of the blue, our pool and deck decided to move south-- as in down hill for no apparent reason. For months we agonized over what to do, how to do it, and who to trust with such a major repair expense. The parade of characters and the proposals we received were enough to make this little girl scream-- which I did on a number of occasions, until my dream man entered the picture.

Mr. Bruno was an angel sent from heaven, or rather recommend by the delightful Thomas aka Mary Poppins, our project guru. As the on-site manager of the repair job, Mr. Bruno rode shotgun over all the workers, oversaw every detail and made sure our yard was spotless at the end of every day-- And I mean spotless! (The empty pool was vacuumed literally every single afternoon before the last guy left!)

For the better part of eight weeks, whenever I looked out the window into our yard, thanks to Mr. Bruno, all I saw were asses and elbows-- of guys working really hard and efficiently and amazingly neat. Despite, the early morning hours, the blaring construction noise and the OMG invoices we paid, at the end of it all, it was way less painful than I ever expected. And that is a dream come true.

There were no surprises, no "oophs", no mystery charges, no disasters (despite an earthquake in the middle of the repairs) and most important-- no drama! The job was done according to plan, on schedule (give or take a few rain days) and on budget. What a relief!

Of course I was hoping for some juicy blog fodder in the process. After all, some days I had a dozen men by my pool and food trucks lining up and down the street to feed them, but I'll take on-time and on-budget any day of the week in lieu of good blog gossip.

Now all that's left is to replant the flowers we moved into temporary pots so it looks like this again....

...And wait for the warm summer weather for our first pool party! Of course no one will ever notice the repair job since everything was put back to it's original place and condition, but when the lounge chairs are full of friends and family on the deck, I'll be confident no one will be going anywhere-- except to the buffet!


A very big and very late hug and shout out to Alix at Casa Hice for including me in her Blogger Buddy Award recognition. I'm an Alix groupie and never miss a post. If you don't know this amazing woman go check her out. You'll be really glad you did. Alix is a great friend, a true inspiration and one of my all time favorite reads.

This award requires I pass it on to ten Blog Buddies but you know me-- I hate to name names (except for Holly at Your Mother Knows But Won't Tell You-- I love Holly and I'm pretty sure she's how I found Alix in the first place.) So after Holly, I pass this on to the first nine commenters and all of you who would like to send some blog love to your favorite Blog Friends too.

Are you ready for summer?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins

Photo Credit: (bumble bee) © smilewithjul -

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Sundays In My City #31 - Puppy Love

Unknown Mami hosts a great Sunday theme inviting YOU to get out and take pictures of your city and/or Sunday to share with the rest of blogland. Click HERE to see Unknown Mami's Sunday in her City today.

For years I've been saying I can never get a dog or cat. My reason is simple-- I know, without a doubt, I'd become the crazy dog or cat lady in a New York second. You know what I'm talking about-- One of those peeps who talks baby talk to their pooch or carries their cat in a Louis Vuitton bag. Yup, I would so go there.

Not having a pet never bothered me-- That is until I met this little guy last week....

Nine month old Noah belongs to my folks in Ohio. It was all I could do not to smuggle him out of their house and onto the plane with me back to Los Angeles.

He's trained beautifully and full of love and sweetness and I came this close to dog-napping him.

The good news is, I'm heading back to Ohio in ten days for my sweet niece's baby shower-- So I can rethink my doggie desire to see if I've come to my senses. Otherwise, my "no pup pledge" might be going by the wayside.


How's your Sunday?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: Joanna Jenkins

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Look Before You Leap

Not far from my Ohio hometown, a high speed police chase recently ended with a suspect scaling a very high fence to get away. Than things went very wrong.

Let me back up.

It seems 20 year old Ricky Flowers thought he could out run the local police who were trying to pull him over for a traffic citation. After racing through several communities followed by lights and sirens, Mr. Flowers decided to ditch his car and took off on foot.

He ran until he came to a great big chain link fence-- Topped with barbed wire-- That he successfully got past, despite numerous cuts and scrapes.

Did he getaway? Not exactly.

It was the wee hours of the morning and very dark outside so Mr. Flowers failed to notice the fence he so successfully scaled belonged to a correctional facility-- You know-- A prison.

Yes, he "escaped" smack into the middle of the prison yard, with lights blaring, alarms sounding and I'm guessing a lot of guns pointed directly at him.

Dude! (You idiot).

If that wasn't embarrassing enough, it was an all women's state prison, and no, he did not make a love connection, nor was he invited to stay but he might have picked up the old "ball and chime" while he was there.

Mr. Flowers was arrested, taken to a men's jail and charged with a slew of crimes, not the least of which should be that he's a blooming idiot!

Breaking into a prison, is that poetic justice of what?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: © Elenathewise -
PS Thanks to all of you for your kind words and prayers for my family.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


23rd Psalm

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord

I will be away for a while with my family in Ohio. We lost a cherished loved one and home is the only place I can be right now-- close to family.

I've told you about Dave, my Mom's sweet husband-- His beautiful daughter passed away from a long battle with cancer. Our family will gather and love and support each other while our hearts break.

Hold your loved ones extra close today.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Summer Resolutions

Spring is in full bloom and summer is just around the corner. Finally!

But, it seems like every Labor Day weekend I'm asking myself where the summer went. It happens without fail! Before I realize it, Memorial Day, July 4th, the glorious weather, and all things summer have flown by without a moment to enjoy any of it. But this year I'm planing ahead and that's going to change, baby!

This year, I'm making my list of Summer Resolutions and I'm sticking to it-- I'm making plans, organizing my calendar, spending quality time with family and friends, slathering on the sunscreen and ceasing the opportunity to ENJOY the best months of the year!

My Summer Resolutions are simple--

1) Potluck dinners will be on the calendar faster than you can say "pass the potato salad" to connect with friends I don't see nearly as often as I'd like.

2) Plant tomatoes-- My BFF has seedlings for me in her greenhouse and this summer I'm going to nurse those gems into beautiful, ripe fruit that makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

3) Godson and I will fly to Ohio to meet the newest addition to our family-- My sweet niece's baby is due June 19th and I can't wait to get my hands on her.

4) Beloved Husband and I will sneak off for at least two extra long weekends together-- Hopefully one will be in NYC and the other with a spa massage for me and tennis for him.

5) I will find my treadmill again. I know it's here somewhere, under piles of junk, but I WILL find it and use it five days a week like I used to-- Because I want a lot of.....

6) Pool parties! (And this year I'd like to actually swim-- translation: wear a bathing suit.) After the massive repair job we're undertaking on our sinking pool and deck (The construction is moving along swimmingly, by the way.), we will definitely be splish-splashing this summer.

7) Yoga. I'm going to figure it out and find a class or two per week that Beloved and I can take together. Yes, zen is definitely in our future this summer.

8) War and Peace. I've never read but this summer-- Cover to cover by Labor Day.

9) I will remember to cut fresh flowers from the garden and bring them in the house to enjoy. We have huge rose bushes loaded with blooms that will brighten my days.

10) And I will partake in mindless entertainment, like this....

Cuz a girl needs a little fluff in the summer, especially after War and Peace.

What are YOUR Summer Resolutions?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: Joanna Jenkins

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

What's It Really About?

It's been easy for me to stay out of the Tiger Woods sex fiasco because, really, it's not my business. I'm sick of celebrity bad boys and girls in the news and have learned to tune them out-- Until now.

Thanks to The Masters Golf Tournament and Tiger's big debut after rehab, this little ditty has been on the airwaves....

"Tiger, I am more prone to be inquisitive to promote discussion. I want to find out what your thinking was. I want to find out what your feelings are, and did you learn anything?"

It's supposed to be Earl Woods, Tiger's father, speaking in the commercial.

Yes, we all know Nike is standing by their man. And yes, Tiger is facing the music so to speak. But bringing his late father into the whole sorted, nasty, mess is, in my opinion, tasteless-- proving to me, that it really is all about money.

What do you think?
Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


So there I was at the cemetery-- An old friend, June, passed away on April Fool's Day-- She would have found great humor in that so I mention it here-- And she was being buried on Easter Sunday, again another "rising" subject she'd have made a joke about with no disrespect intended.

I arrived early for the funeral to visit another dear friend, "S", buried at the same cemetery a year and a half ago. "S" was a great, great, gal pal and I miss her terribly.

I'd been standing at her grave for a good ten minutes-- On my toes, so my high heels wouldn't sink into the ground. It was windy and I was sad and I started to feel a little wobbly. I blamed it on crying and my shoes so I stepped onto a paved walkway next to her grave. With both feet firmly planted on the sidewalk, I still felt uneasy and I momentarily questioned if I was about to passout.

Hmmm, my head felt fine, but my vision, as I focused on the grave marker, was shaky at best. I continued to wobble but a few moments later felt fine again. I thought it best to slowly make my way to the gathering for June's funeral.

I sat at the back of the Chapel in case I was in fact getting sick and needed to make a hasty retreat. But by the time the funeral started I was beginning to think I had dreamed the whole thing. My eyes focused, the prayers were easy to read, and standing and sitting weren't a problem.

After the service, I stood out in the fresh air and breathed deeply. Since I was feeling fine I dismissed the earlier incident as a heavy heart.

Then I started my car and turned on the radio. Helloooo! Earthquake! Why didn't I think of that? I'd felt a big 7.2 quake centered in northern Mexico that lasted upwards of 40 seconds. I didn't have spaghetti legs, or vision problems, the earth really was moving. Dang, I hate when that happens.

Once I figured things out, I thought of my friend, June, and what a kick she would have gotten out of having an earthquake at her funeral. Her sense of humor was legendary and I'm sure she was looking down at me saying with a wink, "fooled you".

Welcome to - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: © Vickie -

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Sundays In My City #30 - Let's Roll

Unknown Mami hosts a great Sunday theme inviting YOU to get out and take pictures of your city and/or Sunday to share with the rest of blogland. Click HERE to see Unknown Mami's Sunday in her City today.

No matter where people are from, if they haven't experienced one before and they are in California, the conversation usually turns to earthquakes. For the record, I hate earthquakes-- A LOT, but I'm happy to talk about them with out-of-towners.

Several members of my niece's University's Horse Riding Team and their families asked about earthquakes last weekend. I explained how they rock and roll and make noise and scare the daylights out of me. But all agreed they'd like to experience one before they left town-- Preferably a small-ish one.

These banner are all over town promoting "April is Earthquake Preparedness Month". Who knew?!? Note the tagline... Are You Ready To Roll?

After the horse show finished (and they came in 1st place), the Team made a side trip to Hollywood to see the Walk of Fame, Madam Tussauds, the Kodak Theater and the likes, including this sightseeing bus below that made me laugh out loud.

Both buses are for Hollywood tours but the blue one sold the entire side of their bus for a toilet paper advertising campaign with the tagline-- Now Softer & Stronger. That's How We Roll. It's a campaign that's been running for a while-- Call me crazy, but it cracks me up.

I'm not sure which is funnier-- The Toilet Paper bus answering the Earthquake Banner question or that tons of people pay $40 to ride in a bus selling toilet paper-- And I'm pretty sure the TP advertisement isn't also on the side of the bus the door is on.

But, as they say in showbiz-- Just roll with it baby.

Follow-up Sunday 5:30pm - YES! I felt the 7.2 earthquake centered in Mexico. It was a rolling long one but mild in our area. I'll post more about it soon.

How's your Sunday?
Welcome to The Fifty Factor - Joanna Jenkins
Photo Credit: Joanna Jenkins

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Blue Ribbon

Living cross-country from my family means I've missed a lot of milestones, adventures and thrills with them, especially my ten nieces and nephews. (Ages 12 - 28) But I fly home to Ohio as often as I can, usually 4 or 5 times a year, and try to cram as much time together as I possibly can in my always too short visits.

Over the years I somehow managed to time trips around the birth of several of the kids, and as they grew, checked schedules for special events and activities they'd be participating in so I could cheer them on in person from the sidelines.

One of those events was a horse show my baby sister's oldest daughter, Cee, participated in when she was 8 years old. She'd taken English and Western riding lessons for a while when the instructor arranged for a show competition complete with ribbons and judges so the kids could get the experience for future 4-H riding programs.

Yes, I'm a bragging Auntie, so you won't be surprised when I tell you Niece Cee won her very first blue ribbon-- 1st place in her 1st horse show! That was in 1998 and I have still this picture on my office bulletin board because it was such a special day that I was thrilled to have witnessed.

Fast forward to last week when Cee was in town for Spring Break from college and for the collegiate Semi-Final riding competition with her Midwestern university's equestrian team-- which just happened to be held in Los Angeles over the weekend. (Lucky me!)

We spent five great days together taking in all the usual tourist attractions and girl-talking before I dropped her off with the team to buckled down and prepare for their big competition on Saturday and Sunday.

I'm at the age when I regularly feel "the changing of the guard" so to speak, as the younger generation matures into adulthood and I step back and watch them spread their independent wings taking them to college, into marriages and even parenthood.

It seems like just yesterday I was knitting baby blankets for them. Now we're discussing career plans, life goals and baby names while I'm in awe of their many accomplishments.

And speaking of accomplishments-- Cee's team won 1st place in the Semi Finals competition which qualified them for the National Championship competition next month in Kentucky! Not bad for a little girl who's first horse show was in a small pasture wearing a pair of too big riding boots and a very proud smile.

Watching Cee ride, seeing her success and her team's victory was a blue ribbon moment for me.

Have you had a blue ribbon moment lately?
Welcome to The Fifty Factor - Joanna Jenkins
PS I'm back from Spring Break vacation (and resting up from vacation!) and will be making the rounds to catch up with you all this weekend. xo jj
Photo Credit: Joanna Jenkins