Archive for the ‘watching tv’ Category

stilettosI don’t know about you, but I love shoes. Always have. I’m somewhat of a collector, or at least I used to be. Since high school I’ve had office jobs and since high school I’ve worn high heels. Used to be, the higher the better. Shoes make a statement and I was bold. (more…)


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disney-memeBy now it’s no secret that I’m a Disney freak. Yes, that’s right, I love all things Disney. I never get tired of visiting the parks, reading the blog sites, flipping through the glossy magazines, watching the movies, wearing the t-shirts, all of it. (more…)

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Last week I gave you a smattering of the kinds of paranormal activity we currently experience here at The Baer House Inn. Never anything sinister or malevolent, just little noises to let us know that “we are not alone.”

This week, I’ll delve a little deeper into some lesser know types of ghosts or ways that ghosts manifest themselves.

First, let’s talk about the trickster, the kokopelli if you will.

Image courtesy Google Images

Image courtesy Google Images

According to http://listverse.com/2013/03/27/10-little-known-mysterious-ghost-types/ – “Unless one is German, then the “Kobold” is not exactly a household term when it comes to the paranormal. Like a poltergeist, the kobold is a mischievous little spirit, playing tricks on humans and doing things to unsettle whoever is occupying its space. Kobolds can be malevolent or benevolent, depending on circumstances.”

Well, I for one only want to experience the benevolent type.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Former innkeeper, Doug, had a first-hand experience with a Kobold while he was doing some remodeling work in the basement. You see, the basement (the inside one, we also have an outside one), used to be the Baer House kitchen. I know, I know – weird that a home built in the late 1860’s, early 1870’s had a kitchen inside the house. Unheard of at that time. You see, kitchens had a tendency to burn down and burn down fairly frequently. That’s because people still cooked over open fires or with open flames in cook stoves. Fire, my friends, can be very destructive if one is not careful.

Well, Ms. Leona Baer insisted that her kitchen be built right inside her home. After her original kitchen house “mysteriously” burned down (that’s a whole different blog post), her construction workers began building the basement kitchen. At that time, people thought Leona was a little off her rocker. Why risk burning down your big beautiful mansion just to have the convenience of an indoor kitchen?

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Fast forward to 2005 when Doug bought the home and decided to turn that unused old kitchen space into a work-out room. During the initial remodel phase, quite frequently his tools went missing. On more than one occasion, he remembered putting a tool in a specific place only to have it disappear the next morning when he went to resume his work. Several days, or weeks, later, said tool would reappear in a very bizarre and out-of-the way place.

I’m thinking that’s a Kobold at work suggesting to Doug that perhaps a work-out room was not such a good idea. In fact, he never finished that room.

That basement was not completed until 2015, when we turned it into a downstairs family room (aka a place to store our stuff). We go down there just about every night to watch t.v. and I have a very small craft/sewing room down there. There’s also a very nice, very modern half bath.

Oh sure, the shenanigans continue, but mostly in the form of electronic equipment going wonky (ie, the television turning itself off or the dehumidifier suddenly stopping for no reason). Occasionally we’ll come home and the lights will be on. Nothing dangerous or scary, just the little trickster letting us know he’s/she’s around.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Now, it makes perfect sense that a Kobold would choose to inhabit this house. You see, this house was built by a very devout Jewish family, the patriarch of which immigrated from Germany. Remember the opening quote? Well, Lazarus Baer was a Jew from Germany, so . . . there you go.

Have you ever heard of Kobolds? I know a lot of you paranormal fans probably use that term every day as part of your regular vocabulary, but I had never heard of it. Until now. So tell me readers, would the presence of a friendly Kobold frighten you? Ever been on the receiving end of a paranormal trickster’s prank? I’d love to hear your experiences.

As always, thanks for taking the time to stop by and for your continued support. I love to read your comments, so keep them coming.

Word of the Day: Quadriga

Fun fact about me: I’m an avid fan of Dancing With the Stars.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2015. Photos and images courtesy Google Images.

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The menopause saga continues folks and let me tell you, it gets weirder and weirder. I have to laugh, because my only other choice is to cry myself into a padded room. And let me start by saying that men definitely got off easier (again) on the whole aging thing. I mean, at mid-life they just buy an expensive sports car and – bam – they’re over it and move on into their golden years.

Women however, we experience mid-life differently. Most get the “usual” physical symptoms, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, bulging bellies. But not me my friends. No sirree, not me, although my belly does bulge a little. I have all of the “other” symptoms. I ones you never hear about.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Let me explain. For awhile now I’ve been experiencing some strange little things in my body. Things like a sore thumb one day, a sore wrist the next three, creaking knees the following week. No injury, no apparent reason for the pain. And, sometimes while I’m driving, my fingers go numb; my feet often “go to sleep” when I’m watching TV. I’ve also been having extreme vision issues, issues not correctable (or explainable) by my eye doctor. I wear a different bi-focal contact lens in each eye and I still have to wear glasses sometimes. And then there’s days when I just can’t seem to see at all, my vision is so blurry. And my eyes hurt. They feel dry and gritty and they twitch. A lot. But then at night, when I lay down to try to sleep, they water like crazy, soaking my pillow on both sides of my head. What the heck? What is this madness?

Where am I going with this? I’ll tell you. I did some research on WebMD.com for dry eyes and joint pain. Both list possible causes for the ailment and potential remedies. But way down on the list for each problem I found that these conditions may be the result of menopause. Say what? Dry eyes and joint pain are menopause symptoms?

Apparently so. And this created a burning need to research menopause a little deeper, leading me to a long list of “unusual” symptoms of menopause. Holy cow! I have more than half of those “unusual” symptoms. And what’s even funnier are the suggested homeopathic treatments for the symptoms.

Here’s an abbreviated list of lesser known menopause symptoms: loss of bladder control, extreme fatigue, inability to concentrate, tingling extremities, irregular heartbeat, anxiety, weight gain, hair loss, brittle nails, and bloating.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Here’s a partial list of cures: drink lots of water, exercise, get lots of rest.

Okie dokie. Let’s just back the apple cart up a little bit here shall we?

My symptom is loss of bladder control and you tell me to “drink lots of water?” Really? How is this helpful? I cannot sleep more than two hours at night and you’re telling me that the cure is to “get lots of rest?” Well duh. And wouldn’t that be nice? And you say that more exercise will cure the weight retention and bloating issues? Yeah, maybe under normal conditions, but, I am so freaking tired there is no way in hell I’m going to exercise more.  I can barely get through one 1-hour zumba class a week. Most of my exercise these days consists of getting up from my two-hour nap each night.

And I might experience anxiety. You think? I’m pretty sure that getting only two hours of sleep each night might make me a little — how shall I say this — tense. Not to mention my hair is thinning at an alarming rate. And my heartbeat is so irregular I think I’m having a heart attack and in fact, consider waking my husband up to have him drive me to the emergency room. I’m pretty sure, this symptom would make anyone anxious.

This article is really funny.

I little farther down on this ever-so-helpful site I read that menopause can last anywhere from twelve months to twelve years. ARE. YOU. KIDDING. ME? Twelve freaking years?!? Nothing anxious about that. Can’t I just buy a Corvette and be rid of it?

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

But here is the kicker my friends; the suggestion that makes me laugh the hardest and longest. The article recommends avoiding alcohol. Seriously? I have 52 things wrong with me and if I drink enough water and get enough exercise and rest in twelve years they MAY go away. But, in those twelve years I’m not to have a drink? Like that’s really going to happen. If there is one thing I really, truly NEED at this very moment in my life, it is alcohol. Please dear God, let me never be out of alcohol. (Unless you bring me a Corvette, then I might reconsider.)

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

So, I know it’s a bit tongue-in-cheek, but seriously, if you read about your symptoms on the web, you may be enlightened. Or mislead. Or entertained. I was definitely entertained at the end of my on-line research. However, I am a little less worried about all of the little crazy symptoms I’m having. There’s light at the end of the twelve-year tunnel that they may go away. Seems I’m not having a heart attack, I’m simply anxious. And I’m definitely going to try staying up all night exercising and drinking water since, Lord knows, I certainly won’t be sleeping.

So (everybody raise your glass), here’s to aging, hair loss, peeing your pants, being awake all night, slightly overweight, anxious and blurry-eyed. I thank the good Lord every single day that I am generally healthy, happy, mobile, employed, and do not have some horrible debilitating disease, or chronic condition impacting my life in ways too unspeakable to mention here. If getting old means having a few aches and pains and anxiety along the way, so be it. I’ll take every day I am blessed to live. Even without a Corvette.

How about you readers: have you ever experienced any unusual or unexplainable condition that worried you? Do you try to self-diagnose? Do you rely on information you read on the web? Ever find a silly suggestion to fix a problem?

And, if I haven’t told you lately, I am blessed to call you all friends and thankful for your support.

Word of the Day: Nide

Fun fact about me: If it were practical and affordable I would drive an expensive sports car every single day. (And that’s not just the menopause talking.)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, May 2015. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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Photo Courtesy tv.com

Photo Courtesy tv.com

I have always been a huge Tom Selleck fan and probably, unless he does something incredibly stupid, always will be. Ever since I was a hormonal teen-ager drooling over Magnum PI, I have sought out Tom Selleck media.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Who didn’t love Magnum PI? With the red Ferrerri and friends with helicopters and stuff. Seriously, every girls Mr. Dreamy. And just when I thought the coolness factor couldn’t rise any higher, along came Quigley Down Under. Butter my butt and call me a biscuit. It took all of 2 seconds for me to fall in love all over again.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

And then, later in his career, up popped Jessie Stone. Seriously, how much oh la la can one girl take in her lifetime. Sure, he’s aged a bit but so have I. He still has the “it” factor for me.  Even as grumpy police commissioner Frank Regan in Blue Bloods, I still love Tom Selleck.

Imagine my heart-stopping excitement when last week I happened upon a Jessie Stone movie marathon on TV. That’s right – 4 Jessie Stone movies right in a row; 8 uninterrupted hours of Tom Selleck deliciousness. I couldn’t get to the remote fast enough. “I’ll surprise my Sweetie,” I said to my smugly smiling self, and record 4 wonderful movies that we can watch together (he’s a fan as well, although in a far less sexual way). I scrolled and clicked and scrolled and clicked until all four of those little babies were set to record one right after the other.

After dinner one evening, we sat down on the sofa, as is our norm, to watch TV spend some quality time together and decided now was the perfect time to watch one of those juicy Jessie Stone movies. Imagine my horror when, instead of this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I was greeted by this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Now, don’t get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with Mr. Ed, in a sort of black-and-white, 1950’s talking horse kind of way. But, Alan Young is NOT Tom Selleck and Mr. Ed is not the conversationalist I want to spend 8 hours with.

That’s right – I had recorded 8 hours of Mr. Ed. The satellite on-screen guide clearly said “Jessie Stone,” but the recordings were Mr. Ed. Stupid DISH TV. Can I get a collective sigh? Thank you. Imagine my disappointment.

So, how’s your new year going so far? Any disappointments? Any magical moments? I’d love to hear about them.

Word of the Day: Taw

Fun fact about me: I LOVE Tom Selleck!

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, January 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images

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Image courtesy Google

Image courtesy Google

It’s time once again for another round of What Haven’t I, the guessing game about who I am and what I have or haven’t done. I’ve devoted this edition to that ghoulish time of year, Halloween.

Here’s a reminder, the rules: Post your answers (guesses) in the comments section below, keeping in mind that three of the answers are things that I have actually done, one is something I have not done. That’s it. Post your answers and then check back on the 17th to see how well you did (guessed). The first person to post another comment on the 17th, regardless of how many they got right, AND the best guesser (person with the most correct answers) will both be awarded prizes.

You can’t win if you don’t play so put on those guessing caps and get to work.

1. What costume haven’t I donned for Halloween: a) Sexy scorceress; b) saloon girl; c) Snow White, or d) redneck tourist.

2.  What haven’t I served at a Halloween party:  a) pizza; b) beer; c) chips or d) Cracker Jack.

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Photo courtesy of Google Images

3.  What activity haven’t I engaged in on Halloween night:  a) trick or treating; b) handing out candy; c) playing hide and seek in a cemetary, or d) driving trick or treaters from neighborhood to neighborhood.

4.  What haven’t I done at a Halloween party:  a) played the piano; b) sang a song; c) bobbed for apples; or d) tap danced.

5.  What haven’t I watched on Halloween night:  a) It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown; b) A Disney Halloween; c) Castle (Halloween edition) or; d) Halloween.

That’s it. Good luck and I’ll look forward to ya’ll stopping back on the 17th.

Word of the Day: Labeaction

Fun Fact about me:  I can’t “quirk a brow,” like every single person in every single romance novel can. Am I a freak?

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So, it was an average day, like any other. Sort of. It was actually a holiday and about a bazillion degrees outside. I was sitting at my computer writing, like a good little writer does. After adding several thousand words to my current manuscript, I decided it was time to call it a day. Have a brewski, watch some t.v. and relax.

So there I sat, relaxing and drinking beer. Until I realized that my ring finger on my left hand was throbbing something fierce. I looked at it and thought, “Hm. That looks a little red (purple actually) and swollen. Wonder why?”

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Must be the heat, I decided. In an effort to relieve the pressure on my finger I wiggled my amazingly beautiful wedding ring around the swollen appendage in an effort to remove it. Pretty ring wouldn’t budge.

“I’ve got to get this thing off!” I twirled the golden sphere and pulled it and yanked on it, applying spit, soap, lotion, ice, everything I could think of to get the blasted piece of junk off my finger. Finally, after much sweating and swearing the dang hunk of obnoxious metal came off. But my finger . . . holy macaroni . . . it was burning and throbbing at almost unbearable proportions.

For a week I iced it and even tried wrapping a very small Ace bandage around it. Swelling did not go away. After another week, I decided it might be time to see a professional.

My regular doctor was on vacation so I was “squeezed in” to see her associate.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

The doctor took all of two and a half minutes to look at my finger and tell me it was swollen. (“Ya, think?” I should have been a doctor cuz I figured that one out right away.) He sent me for an x-ray, which of course came back all clear, nothing cracked, snapped or popped inside. He prescribed a ten-day regime of Ibuprofen therapy for the swelling and told me to come back if didn’t get better.

And then it happened. On my way out of the doctor’s office he, a perfect stranger, years younger than me, said, “Looks like in just a few months you’ll be fifty. Don’t forget to schedule a colonoscopy along with your regular annual physical.”

Fighting the urge to flip him the bird with my not swollen middle finger, I smiled (sort of) and said, “Thank you.” And then I silently added, “Asshole.” Like I needed that little reminder.

I have a swollen finger for no apparent reason, I can’t wear my wedding ring, which upsets my husband who thinks I’m using this as an excuse to pick up guys (like who’s going to want a 50-year-old woman with a swollen purple finger), and for the next few months I get to look forward to my annual exam complete with colonoscopy!

I’m a lucky girl!

And here’s a little tip. It’s funny, short, and includes a very short history lesson. Check it out.

So, how about you? How’s things going in your world? What little “reminders” do you wish you hadn’t gotten?

Word of the day: Ecclesiology

Fun fact about me: Sometimes I can whistle and sometimes I can’t. And it’s always when I really, really want to that it won’t happen.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, July 2013. Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy YouTube.

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Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

As you Californians know, it’s been HOT!

My husband and I bought our current home almost exactly one year ago today. The house is old, quirky, and needs some upgrading. One of the things that needs upgrading, is the air conditioning. Well, not upgrading exactly, installing. That’s right, we have no air conditioning. It’s been well over 100 degrees for several days in a row. Talk about a melt down.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Normally the heat doesn’t bother me so much, especially since I work in a nice air conditioned office building most days from nine to five and to get there I drive a new car with an awesome cooling system. But, given the recent holiday, I was lucky enough to have four days off in a row. That’s right, four whole days to WRITE! I was overjoyed. Until I actually sat down in my sweltering home office and turned on my laptop.

After four very long days of writing in a sweat box, I am proud to say that I got about 12,000 new words on my WIP (work in progress) and managed to get this blog thrown together to boot. Since I didn’t have a lot of creativity left by Sunday evening, I decided to take a more light-hearted approach to this latest post.

I needed a good laugh at the end of this miserable binge writing session and this is what I found. It’s kind of long, but it’s really funny. I dare you not to laugh. Enjoy!


Tell me, what do/did you do to beat the heat? Did you do anything unusual or exciting for the 4th? Inquiring minds want to know. P.S. WordPress has found it “necessary” to include an ad video at the end of this post. Sorry for that inconvenience.

Word of the day:  Cacomistle

Fun fact about me: One of my favorite breakfast foods is an egg McMuffin

Original post by Jansen Schmidt (July 2013). Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy YouTube (Ellen DeGeneres show).

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My friend Suzanne Vince, awarded me with the Sunshine Award, for no apparent reason. While I am honored to receive this prestigious award, Suzanne is the one who deserves the award most. You see, Suzanne is able to find the silver lining even under the toughest circumstances. You can read about Suzanne’s brave decision regarding breast cancer and the choices a woman must make when faced with the possibility of already having or probably contracting this horrible disease here: http://suzannevince.com/2013/06/russian-roulette-or-mastectomy-my-personal-journey/

Sunshine AwardThe Sunshine Award comes with a set of written rules and is best enjoyed when sharing with others. If you choose to play along, and I encourage you to do so, the rules of the Sunshine Award are:

Include the award’s logo (and rules) in a post on your blog. Simply cut and paste the photo to the right into your own blog post.

Link to the person who nominated you.

Answer the 10 questions below with your answers instead of mine.

Pass the award on to a bunch of “Sunshine Inspiring” bloggers. The rules say 10 people, but choose however many you’d like.

Here are the questions:

Favorite Color:  Red

Favorite Animal:  I guess I’d have to ask domestic or wild. Domestic would be dog, in particular puppies. Wild would be, probably monkeys.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Favorite Number: Four.

Favorite Non Alcoholic Drink:  Unsweetened iced tea.

Favorite Alcoholic Drink: Champagne.

Facebook or Twitter:  Neither. I hate social media. It is a necessary evil.

Passions:  Reading and traveling.

Prefer Getting or Giving Gifts:  Both. Hey, I want it all.

Favorite City:  None. I hate cities.

Favorite TV Show:  There’s too many to pick just one. I like Dancing With the Stars, Blue Bloods, Justified, Hawaii 5-0, the list goes on.

And now, here are nominations for the Sunshine Award:

Because her blogs always make me smile, Tameri Etherton: http://www.tamerietherton.com

Because I love her outlook on life: Pat O’Dea : http://www.rwrambling.blogspot.com/

Because she’s always smiling and spreading sunshine whenever I see her, Suzanne Lilly: http://www.teacherwriter.net/

Because her blogs are always on point and useful: Emma Burcart : http://www.emmaburcart.com/blog/

Because she is Little Miss Sunshine, my Pollyanna friend, Cindy Sample:  http://cindysamplebooks.com/my-blog/

Because she has a wicked sense of humor, Mertianna Georgia: http://www.mertianna.com/

Because she rides a Harley and she’s really cool, Jennette Marie Powell:  http://www.jenpowell.com/content/blog/

Because she always looks up my word of the day, and that makes me smile, Colleen Patrick:  http://coleenpatrick.com/

I leave you with this little bit of sunshine courtesy of YouTube. Yes, I’ve finally figured out how to post videos to my blog. Old dog, new trick. It takes a while. (P.S. I now have a YouTube channel. Check me out if you’re so inclined. But, I’m still learning how to create videos, so don’t expect much right away. http://www.youtube.com/user/JansenSchmidt)

Word of the Day:  Appui    (yes we’re back to the A’s)

Fun fact about me: I can wink both eyes at the same time. This trick just sort of came naturally to me. (Tee hee)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt (June 2013) – Video courtesy of YouTube (Polished Life). Photos courtesy of Google Images.

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About a month ago I was nearly killed by an innocent chair. No. Not really. I was nearly killed by a not-so-innocent chair. Okay, okay. I was using a chair as a step stool and I slipped off the chair and that chair almost cut me in half. No. That’s not true either. I did slip off the chair, but it only felt like I was being cut in half. How could a chair cause such damage and pain?

manila folderI also had a small battle with a manila folder not too long ago, which caused copious amounts of blood to gush from my finger. Yes, that’s right. I almost bled out from a cardboard cut.

I sense skepticism. And, that’s okay. My point is, seemingly harmless objects can cause great harm. Be careful out there my friends. There are dangers around every corner, even in our own homes.

For example, my mother had a lethal weapon that she used on occasion to inspire fear in those who knew her best. I’m sure you all can relate to – (cue scary music) The Mom Voice. You know the one. It’s especially  damaging when combined with the use of your full legal name – first, middle, last. Ah, now you know what I’m talking about. That sweet voice that soothes and comforts can cut you in two if you’re not careful. I encourage you all to be on your best behavior when you’re around your mom. Do not become victims of The Mom Voice.

Side note: This only works with an exact mother/child biological relationship so don’t try The Mom Voice on your husband because it won’t work. If you say “James Euripides Higgenbottommellonworth,” he’ll only look at you like you’ve grown a second head. Whereas if James’s mother says, “James Euripides Higgenbottommellonworth,” he will cower in fear and go to any length to please the woman. You’ve been warned. Use The Mom Voice only on your own children.

And do not – ever – use the mom voice on your own mom. Trust me. Don’t. Do it.

Photo by P. Rickrode - 2003

Photo by P. Rickrode – 2003

I’ve discovered that I have a lethal weapon as well. My eyes. While usually very big and dark and expressive, my eyes can turn into flaming daggers if needed. I have to use the flaming daggers on occasion when someone says something so utterly stupid that I am rendered speechless. How else can I express my level of absolute disbelief? My husband has been the recipient of the flaming dagger eyes. He encounters The Look when he says things like, “that’s not my job,” or “what’d you do with my this or that?” Like I’m responsible for knowing where all of his things are at any given moment. See? The Look.yellow lab

But, the creature who possesses the absolute most innocent of deadly weapons is the domestic dog. Dogs can emit a fart that would kill the Jolly Green Giant and all of his jolly green friends. Our super sweet, big dumb, dorky, absolutely lovable, yellow lab has been known to clear a room with one tiny fart. Sometimes, HE even leaves the room because the smell is so bad. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve had to hit the pause button the the tv remote due to an unexpected explosion of dog flatulence. How can something so awful come out of that sweet boy?

So I ask you dear reader, what harmless lethal weapons have you encountered in your lifetime? What should I be on the lookout for as I go about my life?

Word of the day:  Yapock

Fun fact about me: I used to wear my brother’s hand-me-downs.

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