Life Without Internet

An entire week without internet.

An internet fast.

I wish I could say I lost a few pounds but alas, I continued to eat during my fast.

Two back-to-back trips meant I was gone from home for eight days.

The first trip was so spontaneous that I didn’t have time to prepare any blog posts and thought I would write when I arrived at our destination.

Spontaneity with a family of six is really an oxymoron.

But we pulled it off and I was sure I would just keep blogging when we got out of the car.

Only to find no internet.

Except on my phone. I’m a creative problem solver and a bit of techno-nerd but I cannot write a blog post on the keyboard of my phone.

Nor can I answer emails other than a few short words on my phone.

I’m an old-fashioned typist – shocking but true!

We’re all fine, fine, fine!

Really, it was a lovely break. All the typing and emailing and reading on the computer screen can be exhausting. I think everyone should try to take an internet break a time or two.

Being tethered to the internet and the wondrous wireless world is great but I still like being with people and have conversation while we make eye contact with each other and aren’t multi-tasking with our laptops and cell phones and other amazing electronic gadgets.

I’ll share some highlights in the coming days. Oh, the fun stories I have to tell of the Humpfreeze family travels.

What’s the longest you’ve gone without internet in recent years?


American Soldiers

I started to look for a generic, patriotic picture of soldiers so I could write a quick blog post and remind you all to take a few minutes before the end of your day to remember what this day is all about.

Besides the grilling and picnics and 3 day weekend, Memorial Day is a day that we should all reflect on the sacrifices of those who have come before us and those who serve today…

Fighting to protect our freedom.

Then I remembered I didn’t need to look for a picture because in addition to my uncles, my cousins, my nephew and friends, we have two soldiers right here

Well, not exactly right here.

They are still in Arizona at AIT.

But we are thankful as I know they are too that their Daddy and Granny got to fly in and spend time with them because they got a 4 day pass off base.

They’ve seen the glorious Grand Canyon.

Side note: I’m not sure how much PhilBillPaul and Granny actually saw because they appear to have their eyes closed.

And thanks to a special family in Mesa, they spent a beautiful day boating on Sagauro Lake.

You don’t have to save your gratitude and prayers for Memorial Day. On any given day, I hope you’ll send up a prayer for our military and their families…

and my darling twin daughters.

Here’s a great video worth taking 4 minutes from your day to watch and remember…


Good Food, Good Friends, Good Game

Some people plan their blog posts.

Some people are organized.

Some people take pictures of the food before people start eating it.

Who are those “some people”?

Then I remind myself {again} that this is not a food blog. I’m slow like that.

We did change up our Annual Humpfreeze Superbowl Party tradition since the darling twins are in Arizona and The Grunter had to work.

Scary Baby carried on the sign making tradition.

She wanted her sisters to see that she managed without them.

We carried on the Knox Blox tradition.

She helped with the important toothpick pennants.

It was very nice for our Indiana friends to invite us over to cheer on the Indianapolis Colts for Superbowl last night.

Otherwise it would have been a tiny party of three at our house.

A few appetizers and some blue popcorn and pretzels drizzled in blue were transported over along with our Knox Blox.

Side note: The desserts were not half eaten when we arrived.

There was a ridiculous amount of delicious food which is mandatory for Superbowl parties, isn’t it?

And if the Colts had to lose, it was to a very well-deserving team. The New Orleans Saints really shined and that city is so worthy of the victory!

Good food, good friends, good game…it was a good weekend.

How was yours?


Wiener Dog Wednesday

Imagine my surprise when I got a package last week and inside was a present with a tag that said…

To: The Wieners

From: Tucker

Before I tell you what was in the box, I think it is necessary to give you a little of the back story…

Tucker didn’t really send the box – his “mom” did.

Hip and Cool Friends

Hip and cool seems to be a recurring theme. With my sister. With my cousin.

And this is a tiny preview of how long I’ve known Tucker’s hip and cool mom.

KerriA copy

Take in all that is hip and cool in that picture.

Kerri is my oldest friend. Even though she is a year younger than me. 😉

We met in the 4th/5th grade combo class we were in together way back when.

Kerri and I spent a lot of time together and we were quite the fashion plates.


Exhibit #1

Okay, so really Kerri’s mom was hip and cool because I think these were all her clothes. I don’t remember having white go-go boots but Scary Baby would really like those if I had saved them!


Exhibit #2

We were in charge of the record player while my hip and even cooler sister and her friend sang to The Carpenters at a festival in town. Karaoke before karaoke was cool.

Hip and Cool Dads

Our dads played golf together.


As you can see, Kerri’s dad was ultra hip and cool.

Side note: I hear he still grills a mean chicken. He did blackened before blackened was cool. Except it wasn’t hot and spicy it was just black as in burned. And then made us eat it. Always a fond memory. Hi Dean!

I lived in Rockford, Michigan from 3rd grade through 7th grade and have some of my best growing up memories there.


I went back and visited Kerri a few years ago and Rockford is just as charming as I remembered.

One of my most favorite places is this one…


The Corner Bar was a totally appropriate hangout for kids and adults. See the order window? That’s so kids could order without having to go in the smoky bar. Not that we didn’t spend hours in there with our dads.

Plaques line the walls with wiener hot dog eating records.


Chili dogs aren’t the most photogenic food but I’m telling you right now if you are ever near Rockford, Michigan you MUST have a Corner Bar hot dog.

Okay, thanks for indulging my trip down memory lane – it was related to wieners in a very roundabout way.

Back to the gift box Kerri sent which really was for our wiener dogs.

It contained these adorable homemade dog treats.


Crazy cute little dog crackers/biscuits/treats made with earthy crunchy ingredients fit for human consumption. I encouraged Roger Leroy to try one but she wouldn’t.

Look at the cute names with all the healthy ingredients listed.


Even better, Kerri and her niece do it all for the American Cancer Society.


I’m helping her launch a dog blog and I’m encouraging her to turn this into a profitable business with a portion of her dog treat empire going to charity.

I’ll keep you posted and maybe in the next few months you can all order adorable and delicious dog treats too!

Sabu and Dudley give them 5 stars and love them.

Thank you Kerri for sending the wiener dogs the fun treats! Thanks too, for continuing to be my oldest friend.

Merry Christmas to everyone!


Don’t Miss This Movie

Let’s get this out of the way right now.

I’m not caught up in the Twilight Saga.

So while everyone was watching that this weekend, I wasn’t.

I looked back and realized it’s been almost a full year since I’ve reviewed any movies. You would think I would make it a regular blog feature, maybe do it monthly since we get free movie tickets.

But that would require planning and organization which is not my strong suit right now.

Instead I’m working more on being spontaneous so PhilBillPaul and I decided to squeeze in a movie last night. As I’ve shared before, I’m kind of picky and don’t like to waste time in a mediocre movie even if it is free!

What a nice surprise to watch a movie that was funny and poignant and really makes you stop and think about the blessings all around us.

If you see just one movie this holiday season, I think this is the one to see…

The Blind Side starring Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw
It is based on a true story about a family in Tennessee who take in an amazing teenager who needs a home.

Picture 2

Scary Baby really wants to see it but we needed to see it first since it is rated PG-13. Entertaining with a message we hope all our kids will get. For me, it’s that rare movie that I will gladly sit and watch again.

Go see it and come back and tell me if you like it as much as I did!


Breaking News

Or not.

First, I have to confess that I am addicted to Dancing With The Stars and like to watch both episodes on Tuesday so I can see who gets voted off.

If you don’t watch it, this post will mean absolutely nothing to you so go ahead and click off now.

PhilBillPaul has no interest in this show. I have to review the good, the bad and the ugly with my mom or my friend Toni in North Carolina.

Last week I couldn’t stop myself. I had to send Toni a text about a contestant who I really don’t know much about.

Nothing against him or snowboarding but who’s with me on this one?


Louie’s resemblance to an…

Oompa Loompa

disturbs me a bit every time he dances.

Toni agreed and text back “Member of the Lollipop Guild”

I knew she would get it.

Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory is one of my favorite movies of all time.

Every time he starts dancing, I start humming…

Oompa Loompa doompety doo
I’ve got a perfect puzzle for you
Oompa Loompa doompety dee
If you are wise you’ll listen to me

Side note: I’m rooting for Donny Osmond because I appreciate a white man from my generation being able to dance.

And in full disclosure I loved, loved, loved the Michael Jackson tribute last night because we wore his albums out back in the day when he was a young black man. 😉

These are just my personal opinions and of course, I’d love to hear yours if you are a fan of the show.

Which I’ve always thought should be called “Dancing With The Stars Who Are Sometimes Not Stars or Have Never Been Stars.”

Next week tell me if you start singing “Oompa Loompa” when Little Louie (whom I’m sure does not want to be called Little Louie or Oompa Loompa or Oompa Louie or Oompa but I can’t stop myself) starts dancing.


Photos from here and here. Lyrics from here.

Old and {Re}Tired

Does the word retired mean that we will be more tired than we are now even though we have not retired yet?

I thought of this as PhilBillPaul and I drove back from North Carolina late Sunday after playing 36 holes of golf and thinking of ways we can move there before we retire.

Especially since we probably can’t retire until we are around 95 and by then we’ll probably be too old and {re}tired to even play golf…

36 holes of bad golf is still better than no golf.

Even though I can barely move my right arm because playing golf a few times a year moves muscles I didn’t know I had.

Um yeah, it’s official. We are old.

And tired.

I’m hoping PhilBillPaul will stop wincing with sound effects whenever he moves because he hurt himself playing on Sunday–he plays less than I do. And he’s older than me.

In spite of that…

Great food, friends and fun made for a perfect weekend.

Thanks Toni & Randy 🙂

What did you do over the weekend?


Open Bar at Graduation Party

So I found out that at least one of the darling twins who shall remain nameless was telling everyone that there would be a bar at their graduation party.

This is extra funny since I don’t drink.

And do not condone minor drinking.

In spite of that…

We did have two bars at their party last Friday.

Bar #1 ~ A Taco Bar


The crockpots full of meat were shredded chicken, pork and beef. I did not want to use the oven for anything on the day of the party so this worked out well.

If you are interested in the recipes which received rave reviews, just click below:

I also made mexican rice and black beans neither of which I eat but friends said were good. Fresh tortilla chips, salsa, crispy taco shells and shredded cheese from our favorite local Mexican restaurant rounded out the taco bar.


Side note: Thank goodness for great neighbors who loaned us crockpots and great serving dishes to keep costs down.

Bar #2 ~ A Candy Bar


It seemed to be a big hit with all ages.


This kid cracks me up every time I see him.

I was pretty sure we couldn’t go wrong with a candy bar!


Even if the cute little graduation caps melted on the sticks and slid down to the bottom because it was 85 degrees that day. Let’s not talk about our air conditioning problems right now, kay? 🙁

The high school colors are maroon, navy blue and gold.

Did you know it is very hard to find navy or royal blue sugar?

I had found this cool place on the internet near us and we went last Monday – the exact same day that blogging rockstar and cake pop queen Bakerella featured the store. I think we should be friends and I really think I should have emailed her and asked begged her to come and make cake pops or cupcake bites for the party.

Because this is what my feeble attempt looked like.


Which may not look all that bad to you if you’ve never seen Bakerella’s adorable creations. I’m not encouraging you to but if you must you can click over to her site and confirm yet another calling I really didn’t miss.


We had red velvet with cream cheese frosting and lemon with lemon frosting. Everyone was fascinated that you could eat the whole thing – I should have made a tent card that said “Entirely edible” because people tried to peel the bottom like it was cupcake paper but it was actually melted white chocolate.

Or I could have just ordered a cake from Costco. Yeah, I considered that after making three test batches of cake pop blobs.

We called these Triple Chocolate Army Helmets.


Even though we made them in a truffle mold. Yeah, helmets – way more appropriate then truffles on sticks.

We added PhilBillPaul and Scary Baby’s patriotic pretzels and the candy bar served its purpose.


The party was lovely. Really it was.

Now if we can get through the graduation on Thursday…

P.S. Though there was no official *bar*, PhilBillPaul did serve a few Mexican beers to the grownups.


Spring Break ’09 Part Two


A gorgeous day at Clearwater beach. Just a wee bit more crowded than it was 20+ years ago.


Wizzy and I had a great afternoon with perfect weather while Roger Leroy and C-Mac went bike riding.

And a little philanthropic visit…

Visiting Luci’s assisted living facility is always fun. Oscar’s dancing was an absolute delight!

Back to reality…

Did you do anything fun for spring break?


Spring Break ’09

Hot, sunny and having loads of fun.

Don’t worry, this was for photo shoot purposes only.

C-Mac did wear a life jacket.

The girls gave the day a perfect 10.

All thanks to “Aunt” Luci and “Aunt” Judy!


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