This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My Domain

Not mine. But my cat's.

That's what I think of when I see him anywhere in my house. He sits or lies stately, as if we, the humans, are his minions. We probably are.

Shortly after we go Sunkist, Tim and the girls made a play structure for him. It sat in the main (TV) room with us, which at the time, was upstairs. Since then, we moved into one room downstairs, then into another. But once we were downstairs, Sunkist rarely went upstairs to play in the structure.

Or if he did, we never saw him do it.

Since the one room we were in is bare, we decided to bring down his play structure and set it near a window, so he could make those weird meow sounds at the squirrels and birds that frequent our yard.

Now we see him use it often. He just perches right up there and stares out the window.

Sunkist's Domain:

Sunkist staring at playthings from his plaything:

Even personalized:

This is the other side of the structure, where there are steps to get down:

What he looks like in it:

Coming down the stairs...I just love how his paws look in this picture:

He demonstrates the plethora of play things on his structure:

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Spring Break, Day One

I was so excited about today. The plan was to take CJ, Mi-Mi and two of CJ's BFFs to the play at Raleigh Little Theatre, The One Hundred Dresses, which is based on a novel by Eleanor Estes.

A few weeks ago, someone from work posted this play on an internal mailing list and mentioned that it was a play done by young children. I thought this would be a great get-together for CJ and her BFFs (that are in other schools), plus a cool thing for me and Mi-Mi to do with the girls.

I wanted to take them out for lunch beforehand. One girl is a vegetarian; another is semi-vegetarian (father is vegetarian). I thought of the Irregardless Cafe, a one-time favorite and frequent place for me and Tim. Unfortunately, not open for lunch on Saturdays.

Same for Gravy, a place that CJ mentioned because the chef had visited her school a couple weeks ago, for the Humanities Hoopla, talking about his career to the kids.

Same. Not open for lunch.

I sent a tweet for recommendations for a place and someone tweeted The Remedy Diner. They had a wide, WIDE selection of vegetarian options that I decided that would be the one.

But the day didn't start out so hot.

I woke up with an extreme crick in my neck. So painful that I couldn't really move. It still hurts at 22:09.

Then, after having the girls piled into the car, I ended up hitting road block after road block: Glenwood was closed for repaving (um, they work weekends apparently), the key parts of downtown Raleigh were blocked for, what it now seems, the Raleigh Rocks Half Marathon.

And my GPS doesn't work, so I have to go by memory-instinct-experience...none of which are very reliable. But I finally managed to get there and fortunately, we were able to eat and get done in time to get to the play.

But nooooo....before we could actually leave The Remedy Diner, I see that I am nearly blocked from leaving the parking lot by an SUV, a cop car, and four policemen.

Fortunately, they help me out of the area. But I'm still curious as to what was going on...and how I end up in these situations: I once got lost in Raleigh and ended up watching a herd of Raleigh policemen, with guns drawn, running towards a location THROUGH THE STREETS, AROUND MY CAR. Once I made it home, trying really hard not to stay lost, the whole take-down was on the news, LIVE. I *never* go that route and the day I do, I end up in the middle of it.

ANYWAY, the play was delightful. The young actors and actresses were amazing. How they know to "act" at that age...not to be embarrassed to pretend in front of strangers? Truly incomprehensible to me in the most awesome way.

After the play, I hit Edible Art for an after-play dessert. It was wonderful and tragic. Tragic because I ate the entire slice of cake and it made me sick for the rest of the day. I wasn't even HUNGRY! And I ate the whole GD thing.

Drop off turned into "can we hang out longer" to "can they sleepover".

Mi-Mi also had a planned sleepover. Somehow, we thought "zoey" was "yy" and ended up making plans with the wrong parents. So somewhere, zoey is still wondering where mi-mi is but fortunately, we convinced yy and her family to take mi-mi in for a sleepover. :)

So Tim and I was able to enjoy a short date night together, at our favorite FAVORITE diner, Hayes Barton. We thought about catching a flick but couldn't wait until 9:45 showings of Shutter Island so we opted to hang out at the hacienda.

So day one of Spring Break? Awesome.

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Other Side of the Coin

I wrote about how glad I was that we killed this loser and how I am pro-death penalty.

But I also alluded to the fact that I am about fairness. And that I am suspicious of how the media MAKES YOU BELIEVE WHAT THEY WANT YOU TO BELIEVE.

The two novels, Picking Cotton and Bloodsworth, showcases how out of hand a case gets...with the media, and horribly, with the legal system.

So I am *PRO* DNA testing for cases (death row or not, but *especially* death row) in which DNA is available to test. It's mind-boggling, and shocking, to me where the legal system does not feel the same way.

I believe that there are too many cases of innocent people in prison. And when it comes to the death penalty, the quote
...I'd rather see a hundred guilty men go free than convict another innocent man.
is something I think of when I read about those questionable cases.

This past week, I was reminded of one of those horrific cases.

First, Texas death row inmate Hank Skinner was supposed to be executed for the deaths of his girlfriend and her two mentally-disabled sons.

You can read more about his case but essentially, he has claimed innocence. And there is DNA from the crime scene to test. And Texas doesn't want to do it because, hey, a jury of his peers have convicted him and that's that.

I don't understand this logic at all. If he's guilty, then the DNA will validate this. SO DO IT and shut everybody else up.

If he's innocent, then redeem yourself and make it right. It's the moral thing to do.

How could you sleep at night not knowing *for sure* when you have the tools to know *for sure*?

So, as I read about Hank Skinner's case, a plea for a stay of execution (from several newsletters and FB pages I subscribe too), I noticed that they (those requesting for a stay) referred back to Texas Gov. Perry, who may feel pressure to revisit Sinner's case because he fucked up on the case of Todd Willingham.

Well, that didn't happen in Skinner's case. It was actually the United States Supreme Court that issued the stay. No one in Texas cared enough to change the course of action. It's still unclear whether they will even do the DNA test, even with his stay.

I know a bit about Skinner's case and it's questionable as to whether he is guilty or not. But I believe the State of Texas should bite the bullet and pay for the damn test to see if he is truly guilty or not.

But what I am very familiar with is the case of Todd Willingham. I remember when the appeals to stay his execution happened as though it were yesterday, and yet it was in 2004 that he was executed in Texas.

The case is horrific. His three young children died in a house fire. The house fire was deemed an arson by "arson investigators". Just weeks before he was to be put to death, articles and experts everywhere called out the original "arson investigators" on their archaic methods. These methods/theories were used to convict the man and were refuted by prominent experts. But Texas didn't listen.

So Texas, by most accounts, executed an innocent man.

A great article, extremely long, outlines the story of Todd Willingham. It's sobering. It's sad. It's tragic. It's exactly why I will NOT BELIEVE in imprisoning anyone on circumstantial evidence. PROOF, baby, that's what I require.

Cameron Todd Willingham, Texas, and the death penalty:

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Spring In My Step

Wow. What a first day of Spring! Ran seven miles at Lake Lynn on a beautiful, sunny day...a nice 79 degrees when I started.

I felt pretty light on my feet too. I seemed to glide. I was in the zone. Had my hat, sunglasses and iPod on, head down, oblivious to my surroundings. Thank goodness no one tried to kill or kidnap me today, because it would have been easy to do. I paid zero attention to anyone around me.

Well, I did say hi to the two city police officers on horseback. It was a pretty incredible sight to see them roaming the park on horseback. I don't think I've ever seen them in these parts of town.

And I gave a friendly two finger wave to two dudes I passed.

But everyone else I ignored.

The first five miles were easy. Yes. You heard right. EASY. I was thinking the whole time "it's spring and I have a spring in my step!" As I finished my second loop around the lake, I decided to see if I could finish the remaining miles in my neighborhood. Watch had 4.82 miles. Wow. I still have a good two miles to go! So I continued on the greenway around the lake and turned around to finish the mile heading home.

The problem with this is that this is completely a slant UP. It's very much like running the uphill path from Black Creek to Montibello...just a constant, gradual UPHILL run.

But nonetheless, I pulled through to end up having an overall average 10:28 mn/mile with my max heart rate at 191, which was that last mile, running up that freaking hill.

I had a good playlist going too:
Tik Tok by Kesha
I'm talking about everybody getting crunk, crunk
Boys tryin' to touch my junk, junk
Gonna smack him if he getting too drunk, drunk

Unsung by Helmet

Uprising by Muse

Wake Up by Arcade Fire - reminds me that I should get the "Where the Wild Things Are" DVD to watch

Waking Up in Vegas by Katy Perry

The Way Heartbeats mashup by Eminem and The Knife
Cause I am
Whatever you say I am
If I wasn't, then why would I say I am?

We Made Sex mashup by Eminem and Jeremih

Without Billie Jean mashup by Eminem and Michael Jackson

You Are the Best Thing by Ray LaMontagne

Blah Blah Blah by Kesha

Boys Boys Boys by Lady GaGa
I like you a lot, lot, think you're really hot, hot
...sorry Frank, I've fallen for her.

Don't Stop the Music by Jamie Cullum - this song is so hot it melts everything around me...

Get Me Right by Dashboard Confessional

Hey, Soul Sister by Train

If U Seek Amy by Britney Spears

Jump Around by House of Pain - I dig angry songs...

Just Krazy mashup by Eminem and Pitbull - Mi-Mi does a mean impression of the "ah-ah-ah-ah-ah" in this song.

Karma Police by Radiohead

LoveGame by Lady GaGa

Meet Me Halfway by Black Eyed Peas

Death Becomes Him

Have you heard of the idiot, Paul Warner Powell? You may have seen a Law & Order-type show that had an episode based on his case. The good news? The MFer died March 18th by the State of Virginia's hands...or chair, to be specific.

I used to be neutral when it came to the death penalty. I am a bleeding heart to the core and in me, I empathized with the family of the murderers. But at some point, I decided the actual murderers did not need the empathy...the survivors (including, perhaps, the murderers' kin) were the ones I still sympathized. And the crimes themselves were not anything to be sympathetic about.

Powell's case is exactly why I believe in the death penalty.

Powell brutally killed a 16 year old girl in 1999. There are gory details to the crime that can be read on several websites. And actually, those gory details can be read from Powell's own confession. You can find one letter he wrote to the prosecutors here.

Not only did he kill the 16 year old...he also attempted to rape her...but that's not all. He waited - while drinking tea and smoking cigarettes in the 16 year old's house - for her younger 14 year old sister, where he then raped and attempted to kill her.

By the grace of a higher power, or just pure luck, the 14 year old survived and nabbed this asshole for the crime.

He was originally sentenced to death for the crime of murder of the 16 year old, and the rape and attempted murder of the 14 year old sister. About a year later, the death sentence was overturned because the Virginia Supreme Court felt that the prosecution lacked evidence that a rape (or robbery) occurred with the murder...which is what qualifies for the death penalty: a *second* felonious act committed in conjunction with the murder of the 16 year old...and not include the rape and attempted murder of the 14 year old.

Powell, AKA the man who could've been a lawyer instead of a killer, thought that by this action - overturning his death sentence - protected him ("double-jeopardy") from being sentenced to the death penalty *ever* *again*.

So, he fessed up to his crime.

He wrote letters to the prosecutor, mocking the prosecutor's stupidity. Here is an excerpt (supposedly) from one letter:
Since I have already been indicted on first degree murder and the Va. Supreme Court said that I can't be charged with capital murder again, I figured I would tell you the rest of what happened on Jan. 29, 1999, to show you how stupid all of y'all mother f*ckers are.

And then he spews out the vicious act he did to the 16 and 14 year gruesome detail. This was enough to charge him with a NEW charge: murder in the commission of an attempted rape of the 16 year old *only*.

I don't know if death penalty opponents will find this a valid point. I have found my footing in this debate and I am very comfortable with my "kill 'em all" attitude. However, I am also very comfortable in my belief that people are "innocent until proven guilty" and feel there are more innocent people on death row (and in prison) than guilty. So, by my book, if you are guilty of murder, you need to die.

So, Thank You State of Virginia. And Thank Goodness we got another worthless POS off the planet.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Oh Boy.

I have stolen the title from KATG's episode 1125. I listened to this episode on the way into work this morning and I LOL'd all the way in. I could care less who saw me, alone in my car, cackling.

It started off with this, the youtube video below...and Keith and Micah Sherman took it all the way through, in their own funny way.

One day, I plan to write why I love this podcast. In the meantime, if you are curious about listening to the above podcast, be warned: it's more of an NC-17 podcast. If you are easily offended by crass, raunchy humor, then my sincerest apologies for being such a prude. Otherwise, you'll find one of the funniest, most outrageous podcasts out there.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Run for the Oaks 5K Race Report

Wow. This race is something I do nearly every year, at least the last seven years! I like it; it's my cue that Spring is here (whether it is or not).

I wasn't nervous about it this year. I was not going into it trying to PR. I wanted to get my feet wet for racing; for recovery from injury; recovery from a long break (to me) from my running routine.

But it apparently was on my mind as I had a dream about running "a" race...not necessarily *this* race.

I remember that I started the race really s*l*o*w. The attribution would be to my workout with Brittany (a kick-ass-and-hot instructor that had me do sprints this past Wednesday). So the start of the race was to go really slow, so slow that it is uncomfortable. And that's what I was doing in my dream, thinking about Brittany's workout (still in my dream).

Then the next mile, I 'feel' from the dream, was going faster. And I ended up on a familiar race route (not a real-life one, but it was familiar to me in my dream) and I took off. And suddenly, I heard $Bill telling me "Just Go!" and we were running together, with him a slight lead ahead of me, egging me on to run fast. And I was. And I seemed "veiled" from the finish, like I couldn't see it. And I could hear $Bill just telling me to keep pushing, that we were close to the finish. And he was right! We finished and I looked at my watch and I saw that we had finished the 5K in 23:xx...the last two miles being 7:0x miles. Of course, this appears to be the average overall, but hey, it's *my* dream and I am just telling YOU what my dream said!

And I was floored (still in the dream). How the hell did we just run 7 minute miles when we started so uncomfortably slow? It was an amazing feeling: that I ran faster than I ever had in my entire life and it didn't feel bad. Of course, the amazing feeling faded fast when I woke up and realized, it was all a dream.

Overall, the race, for me, was great. I didn't PR. I didn't do the speed I would like to think I would normally do. But I ran hard and I ran the entire way.

I could reminisce last year's race (and the year before that) and know exactly where someone I knew tried talking to me; or where I decided to sabotage myself and take off a sweatshirt. But not this year: I kept on running. The entire way. Up the hills (and many of them). And not feel like I had to stop.

I mean, I thought about how nice that would be...and how nice it would be if the race would be over NOW. But overall, I had a positive energy about me. I didn't let the heavy breathers and stompers and walkers bother me.

I didn't let the heat bother me (I was in shorts and my Turkey Trot shirt, with a tank underneath, but never stopped or slowed down to take it off...I ran through it).

I didn't care that I was behind, what I thought was, a slower time than what I should be.

I just ran. And tried to enjoy the burn.

And I don't know if I can say that I enjoyed the burn, I can say that I stayed focus.

Well, for the most part. I did see the route as a bit disheartening. I would think: hey, I'm on Blount Street. I'll be finishing soon (in the third mile). And then I would see a turn OFF Blount and then I would sigh. And then I would think "that's the turn to the end!" and then I would see more runners, ahead, turning BACK onto Blount street. And then I would sigh louder.

But it didn't stop me. And that's what I'm thankful for.

My final chip time: 26:39. My PR on *this* race (but different course) is 25:30, when Mark ran with me (BTW, my first blog post EVER). My overall PR is 24:59.

I am pretty happy with it, given the fact that I saw 26:57 as I crossed the finish. My gun time is 27:01 and I would like to think that I can, at the very least, run under 27 even without great training.

The course was tough. I ran with Tim for about half of it. Then he upped his pace a bit as I slowed mine down.

It's funny because my first mile, as hard as it felt, was approximately an 8:44 pace. I thought it was just like my dream! Although it was uncomfortably faster than an uncomfortably slow pace.

I did about an 8:17 second mile then slowed back down for the third mile. Still, I ran. I ran hard. I had to count: 1, 2, 3, 4, BREATH...1, 2, 3, 4, BREATH. I had a good rhythm.

So, overall, I'm pretty happy. As the neurotic me would say: I wish I was faster. But if I had ran a 25:30 with walking, or even just the hurt, I wouldn't be happy.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Don't Stop *This* Music

I heard this song on Mike's Top 5 Downloads a few weeks ago. I almost had to pull over. This song is amazing...sultry...I fell in love with the song, the voice, the accent, the music, the lyrics.

This is a remake of Rihanna's song. A completely different take on the song. It's amazing. I am a fan.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Run Around the Lake

It seems my weekend runs fall on Sunday. My Saturdays are just too busy. Maybe when I get more serious about my weekend runs I'll go back to Saturdays.

Today we headed to Shelley Lake. Tim had Brenna the dog and the girls as I ran five miles.

I decided to keep my run pretty easy. I have been enjoying my runs of late and wanted to keep up that feeling.

I noticed that my right knee wasn't feeling too hot. Over the past week, I have felt my knee give out even, during a climb up or down the stairs. I hope that's night a sign of anything bad to come but just "growing pains". But every time this happens, I think about my friend Melisa, who's bone-near-the-knee can actually COME out and she has to push it back in. Ugh.

Anyway, the day was beautiful. The park was packed. I didn't get too pissed at the people around me. I enjoyed eying the dogs, especially the puppies and the unusual sights for two Newfoundland *and* a Saint Bernard. Beautiful and BIG dogs.

I listened to my podcast (KATG episode #1118 Who Farted) and stayed tuned to it. I wasn't in my usual friendly-runner mode - smiling at everyone, or nodding hello. Instead, I kept my eyes straight ahead, concentrating on my podcast.

Concentrating so much, in fact, that as I approached mile 3, I heard some heavy feet following me. I was feeling good too, so I had a little pep in my step and was waiting for the clog-hopper to pass me. When they finally did, I looked over and it was Mi-Mi! It was so fucking cute! In her pants and shirt, running alongside me as though she does it all the time. She told me that they were coming from the tunnel and looked right at me and I didn't see them. So she chased after me. She did great running like that, although i wasn't like I was doing an 8 mn pace.

It was a great run - no issues with the hills. My tummy felt odd but not enough to keep me from getting over five miles in.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

I was not looking forward to reading this book.

1. It's not in my choice of genre.
2. It has garnered MUCH attention.
3. I was #100-something on the library waiting list.

In fact, I had actually got the book last year, off the waiting list, after waiting for months. But I never picked it up and lost the much coveted borrownership of the book from the library.

I went back and forth about buying it but decided to go back on the waiting list and fate stepped in and the book became available to me a *second* time about two weeks ago. Thank goodness for fate as it was worth the wait.

Essentially, the novel takes place circa 1962 Mississippi: segregation is still in place, and a strong sense of it in Jackson, Mississippi.

The chapters are broken up by sections with three women: Skeeter, Aibilene and Minny. They are the voice of change - although brave - still under vigilant secrecy.

It's so difficult to read. It made me uncomfortable: reading about how segregation treated people makes me sick. And I don't like to read about it. It's a stain on America and it's shameful. On top of that, Stockett herself a white woman, writing in the style of a black woman.

This is the first paragraph of the book, Aibileen is the narrator:
Mae Mobley was born on a early Sunday morning in August, 1960. A church baby we like to call it. Taking care a white babies, that's what I do, along with all the cooking and the cleaning. I done raised seventeen kids in my lifetime. I know how to get them babies to sleep, stop crying, and go in the toilet bowl before they mamas even get out a bed in the morning.

The stories of these women are riveting. Hearing and learning about their lives, the life they have to deal with, is both shameful and amusing. I love them. Minny is a firecracker. Someone you don't want to mess with! And yet she still cowers to the white women she worked for (not always).

Skeeter is our lone white woman hero. Although she didn't start out actively being a hero: she sort of went with the flow with her racist friends. Not actually believing it, but not actually fighting it.

But an opportunity to write something for NY's publishing powerhouse Harper & Row takes her through Aibileen and Minny's journeys being maids to white women. And she manages to come into her own and makes her an amazing character.

It's one of my favorites of the year. I laughed. I cried. I felt a hole in my soul. How do people become so horrible? How can you go against, what I like to believe, is an innate ability to just be good to people? I'm grateful that I don't know this and I hope to not ever know this.

It's shocking to me that all this took place in the 60s. Not far from my birth year of 1968. All of this segregation, that seems so foreign to LONG ago and yet it's really not. I read in disbelief the author's recounting her own experiences with her black maid. I look at her, on the book jacket, and we are close in age. How can she have experienced segregation? It just doesn't seem possible that it wouldn't have been longer than it has.

A wonderful book that I am grateful to have read. Another big thumbs up to book club for introducing me to yet another wonderful novel I would never have picked up on my own.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

If I Were President...

Here's what Mi-Mi wrote, about what she would do if she were President of the United States:

I would play with my dog 2 hours a day. Clean the house and do my bed. Next I would go on the computer and do work. Than I would take a nap. Last I would make dinner and go to bed.
I bet our President *wishes* he could this!

Mi-Mi then read to me some facts about Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. She proceeded to give me fun facts about Presidents living in the White House. She then looked at me and said "Can girls be President?" Of course! I reply. I reminded of Hilary Clinton running and almost having an iota of a chance.

So hopefully, in her lifetime, she'll get a chance to see that happen. Maybe it'll even be her! She has her presidential planned already lined up!

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

I Forgot My Camera

Of all things, the one thing I wanted to do last night was take pictures.

No. Not *those* kind of pictures.

But pictures of "us" celebrating $Bill's birthday.

And it's the one thing I forgot.

I brought my gloves, my hat, ID, money, phone even! But no camera. So I have to rely on my memory.

First, it was all $Bill's idea: a week ago, he sent his Leanest Loser crew (of which I am a part of) an email inviting us to join him Monday (yesterday) for a 4.2 mile run to celebrate his 42nd birthday. He would buy each one of us a beer for doing so. Our friend Ken replied with the best reply ever "You had me at beer."

And what do you know? Eight of the ten of us (including $Bill) *and* our team lead (plus her husband!) showed up to do this.

And so did Tim. :)

And Coach B.

Wow. Other people besides me feel sorry for Bill...;) (I know he's reading this...)

And let me tell you, what a run it was! I had a blast. Not only chatting away at everyone that I could find but running through my favorite city, at dusk then night. It was amazing to see Raleigh this way.

I met a new friend, Greg. He had shown up to run with a 6:30 crew from the bar that we met to start the run. He ended up running with us and I chatted with him for most of the run.

When we finished, we all gave each other the cheesy high fives that feel oh-so-good to do. Then we had our beers!! And true to his word, $Bill got each and every one of us a well-deserved brewski. I don't know how his birthday went for $Bill, but for me, it was the best $Bill birthday I ever had. :)

Lost and Found

This weekend was busy cleaning up.

Mi-Mi was sick last Thursday evening.  So sick that, well, let's just say, we had to close off the room until more time could be spent on it.  That's where the weekend came into play.

I decided that it was time to make it "her" room.  CJ moved out of it last year and made her room her own.  It was now Mi-Mi's chance.

I had a plan: hit Bed, Bath and Beyond, then the Dollar Store, then Ross, Lowe's and Target.  I knew I had items to pick up in each one of these places.

Bed, Bath and Beyond was first.  We roamed around, took our time looking at stuff...picked up a few things.  Then we headed to the dollar store, where I stocked up on gym locker supplies.

We get in the car to head to Ross when Mi-Mi says, "Um, where's my wallet?"

Um...why are you asking me?  This is a Mi-Mi thing: ask someone else where something is when she forgets.

I asked her if she brought it into the dollar store.  She says "I think I had it at Bed, Bath and Beyond".

Great.  Let's go back to the store and look for the wallet.

I ask the people at the front area if anyone has turned in a pink wallet.  No they say.  Of course not, I think.  People are shitty.  They would take a wallet with $10 measly dollars inside rather than turn it in.

CJ takes off to look on her own; Mi-Mi, in the meantime, is wandering semi-aimlessly:  she is retracing her steps, but that's it.  I ask her to _think_ about where she might have laid it vs. just walking the same walk she did before.  Pick moments in time that she stopped and looked at something: perhaps you put it down then?

But noooooooo...we walk around with no plan of action.

So I'm a little irritated, to say the least.  We leave the store.  I tell her 'wallet's gone; money's gone...I'm not replacing it and I'm withholding allowance for at least a week!'

We make it to Ross, where I pick up most of her bedroom items.  I am stern with my tone.  Mi-Mi is now over it and is happy-go-lucky.

We fly over to Lowe's to grab hotdogs for lunch, then I turn around and drive across the city to drop CJ off at a party-sleepover.  I'm still giving Mi-Mi the cold shoulder.

I drive BACK to the original Lowe's area...hit Target to pick up the rest of the bedroom items...then finally Lowe's for the Rug Doctor rental.  This being the most critical piece of revamping the room.

I am exhausted.  And I'm still frayed with the idea that her wallet is gone.  We get home.  And guess what?  Lost wallet is sitting in the middle of the floor in the living room.  Mi-Mi is sooo happy and says to me "See, all better now!"

As for the room, "all better now":