Monthly Archives: December 2011

In Heaven There Is No Beer

So, was it really asking too much for the Hawkeyes to at least look respectable at the Insight Bowl played in Tempe, AZ? I mean, going in, we all knew it was going to be a tough game for Iowa. Their regular season was pretty dismal and then to be matched up with Oklahoma in a bowl game was guaranteed to end in a blowout, but, gee whiz, it really stinks to be on the losing side.
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Desperately Seeking Don: My Skunk Stripe Is Back!!

I have not had “good hair” since high school and I am not going say how long ago that was! Throughout my adult life, I have been a professional salon hopper…..I don’t consider myself that picky especially when it comes to my hair, but I just could never find the right mix….a mix of someone who could work wonders with my frizz mop and not expect too much conversation while I sat there for two or more hours through the whole cut and color ordeal….also, when I am paying mega bucks at a salon it is because I am assuming my stylist is the professional and can tell me what would look good and what is a “miss”….I have found that most are too noncommittal and default back to “what do you have in mind?”. It doesn’t matter what I have in mind or if I like Jennifer Aniston’s new do…what matters is what is going to look good on me….well, did I ever meet my match!!!

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It’s Beginning To Smell A Lot Like Christmas

With Christmas approaching, Box Wine Budget would like to offer a gift that will be sure to bring a smile and sigh of relief to all of you who are planning on hosting family and friends.  It is a product we accidentally stumbled upon and immediately recognized an unmet need. 
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Mother, Please Don’t Quote With A Martini In Your Hand

As I was watching one of my absolute, all-time favorite television shows the other night, I started thinking about something we, here at Box Wine, have said for years:  that we pretty much use our favorite TV shows and movies as a gauge to determine with whom we can and cannot be friends.

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Dog Court

The following is an excerpt from our book, Living The Dream On A Box Wine Budget (Petrina Collins and Casey Quinn) now available for download on Kindle and Kindle apps for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, PC, Mac, Blackberry and Android-based devices ($2.99 at amazon.com).

PETS: PART II – DOG COURT

 

            Irrational behavior is often blamed on the rollercoaster ride of hormones.  Whether it is labeled as PMS or menopause, women have a built-in excuse for bad decisions.  Tami had the good sense to opt for major surgery to end the monthly madness.  I think there was probably some medical reason for the surgery, but I’m sure it paled in comparison with the other unquestionable benefits of the procedure.  Naturally, I was wildly jealous of her seemingly simple solution. 

            One day, before Tami’s epiphany of life without the threat of pregnancy, exhausting mood swings, or periods (usually resulting in husband, Jim, asking incredulously, “Again?”), she fell under the evil spell of estrogen and made a decision that eventually landed her in dog court.

            The day started like any other.  The kids were unrelenting in their pleas for a companion for their golden retriever, Rookie, who had already begun receiving AARP newsletters.  Truth be told, I don’t think Rookie really had any interest in cultivating new friendships at that point in his life.  Hmmm…sounds familiar.  Maybe Tami and Rookie had more in common than we thought.  Anyway, she let her guard down and found herself driving down the road that dead-ended with Tami asking herself, “What have I done?”  And in the blink of an eye, a new member was added to the family.  Tami knew the instant Max entered the car for the drive home that she had made a huge mistake.  He was a beagle puppy, and like all puppies, was lovable at first glance.  That’s the evil part of the whole thing.  Tami hadn’t had puppy experience, having adopted Rookie after he’d passed that stage.  His worst habit was his penchant for take-out pizza.  And he most certainly had the common decency to do his business outside the house.  Max had a lot to learn and seemed absolutely unwilling to do so.  Continue reading

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Semper Fi

Today is the day that will live in infamy.  Yes, December 7, 1941 will always be remembered for the devastating surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, spiralling the United States into a second World War.  My father served in WWII as an Army paratrooper with the Screaming Eagles 101st Airborne Division.  My father-in-law served in the Marine Corps and, at the age of nineteen, suffered a severe, life-threatening  injury during the battle at Iwo Jima.  Only recently,  has he told anyone of his experience during that life-changing moment. 

He still isn’t sure what hit him.  All he knew was, in a split second, he felt like he was on fire.  Drifting in and out of consciousness, he only prayed that the unspeakable pain would end.  Unbeknownst to him, his unit had been pushed back as he lay, completely unprotected, in front of his own lines.  A medic came to his aid and hastily administered morphine, while attempting to carry him back to safety on a canvas stretcher, only to be dropped several times when bombs exploded all around them.  He says he can remember looking at the medic just as a bullet shot right through him.   He remembers seeing the hole.  Then, my nineteen year old, wounded father-in-law administered morphine to the very medic who had so bravely come to his aid.  That man never survived the battle.  He died saving my husband’s father, but he will never be forgotten.  

(Insert shameless plug here)  My son, Brian, produced a short documentary, while studying film in college, entitled,  The Story Of A Generation, which can be viewed on You Tube.  In it, he interviewed his grandfather about his experience at Iwo.  It is worth the time to watch, as these men are vanishing too quickly and, soon, I fear their stories will be relegated to ancient history.  After the war, he went on to receive his bachelor’s degree at LaSalle College in Philadelphia, continued at the University of Chicago for his Master’s degree, and, then together with my mother-in-law, raised eight children.  Though his injury is a constant reminder of the hell he endured, he remains “Always Faithful” to the Marine Corps.   Semper fi, Grandpa.

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From Serving The People To Serving A Sentence

Well, former Governor Rod Blagojevich has just been sentenced to fourteen years in prison after being convicted on 18 counts of corruption.  Personally, I never liked the guy.  I always thought he was a slimy little weasel, but that’s just me.  Now, after his antics in and out of the courtroom, I know that he is an arrogant slimy little weasel.  But, despite evidence pointing to his enormous character flaws, he does seem to have a loyal following.  There are those who believe that, even though he may have been guilty of criminal activity, it certainly did not warrant the heavy sentence.  I mean, this IS Illinois, after all.  Then there is the camp that believes his only crime was his own gargantuan stupidity – while undeniable, is not against the law.  I have to say, though, if I were in his shoes, I think I’d rather be considered guilty of a crime rather than just being a moron. I mean, even the worst mafia boss is at least protrayed as a slick tough guy.  And, I’m sure there are probably some who think he is innocent of all charges and a victim of mean people who are out to get him, as the Governor has repeatedly decried over the last three years.  He appears to relish his victim status. 

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