Charlie, you are no Joe Lieberman. Can't get the party nomination so you'll just pitch a little fit and run as an Independent? From what I am hearing, that is not going to help you much Charlie.

Don't get me wrong, I have my concerns about Mr Rubio, and I don't even live in Florida, so my opinion matters not one wit.

But reaching out to Rahm? Not your smartest move Charlie. And the very fact that you would reach out to Rahm demonstrates why Mr Rubio is kicking your ass...

Sorry guys, no Koi in sight - no marlin either, but there was sushi :)
Will report in with the catch of the day, upon my return...
Today makes one year here. First Bloggerversary for me.

Small victory - Rose outside eating calmly, not threatening to jump a gate - sound for three weeks straight now.

The pony is all naked now. He tells me he feels much better, and he is very glad to finally be done with the clippers.

Spring flowers in the yard - spring is by far the best season in my yard.

Love my pink dogwood

And the little snake I almost stepped on while taking flower pictures - don't know which of us was more surprised.

run away, run away!

Now I must shave the boy's head, and mow the weeds - I detect a pattern in my activities of late...
Sent to me by someone near and dear...

Four men demonstrated how smart their cats were. The engineer's cat took pencil and paper and drew a circle, a square and a triangle. The accountant's cat divided a dozen cookies into four equal piles. The chemist's tabby poured a glass of milk without spilling a drop. And the government employee's fat cat? He ate the cookies, drank the milk, wee-weed on the paper, filed a grievance report for unsafe working conditions, put in for workers compensation then went home the rest of the day on sick leave
"Ya know, the Easter Bunny is a bit of a creeper - at least you know how Santa gets in the house..."

I'm tired - to the bone, raggedy tired. I've been busting my late 40ish butt trying to shed some fat, hard to do at my age. Cut calories, changed my whole outlook as far as food is concerned - walking hard and fast on the treadmill 45 min every morning, with weights on both ankles and wrists - then another alternating workout every evening, an hour each night but a different workout each night. Some nights resistance, some core, some yoga, some stretching, even some "Kenpo Karate".

I've been taking care of the horse twice a day - cleaning her stall, feeding her special gourmet diet, wrapping and unwrapping her legs on an alternating schedule, riding her twice a day and hand grazing her both trips each day...trying to get her to the point that we can start turning her out and just letting her be a horse again (almost there I think!).

I've been supervising the boy's test prep and this week administering his year end tests (though he will not actually be done with the school year for a few more weeks). And then all the normal home maker mom kind of things that must be done. Plus last week did the four hour drive to bring D3 home, did laundry for college girls X2, and yesterday the four hour drive to return D3.

As though that were not enough I'm doing all the things that need to be done when one is going to be away from home for a couple weeks - getting the lawn in shape - getting the cars inspected, oil changed, etc. - buying new clothes for a growing, almost 13 year old boy, collecting all the outgrown items (almost everything he owns) and taking them to goodwill, getting appointments for bug guys, alarm system guys, AC guys, dental appointments set - you know, all the stuff that piles up when you are all busy with life in general.

Last night I could not sleep - lay in bed aching from the bottoms of my feet to my shoulders, thank goodness I didn't have a headache.

I'm tired --- deep down, to the bone, tired. I think all this means I'm alive and living in the greatest country on the planet. At least for now it still is...
Easter is a much quieter affair here than Christmas - I used to decorate for Easter, though never as much as for Christmas, but the last few years spring is just too busy. Especially now that the girls are away at school, the boy has tests this coming week, the horse is so demanding of my time (though seems to finally be on the upswing!), and a few other extra things going on - no Easter egg tree in the front yard and no bunnies scattered throughout the house. Add to all that the unfortunate fact that, though both girls attend UNC system universities - they did not have the same schedule for Easter break - D2 (UNC Chapel Hill) had Friday off - only Friday, and D3 (Appalachian State) has Monday and Tuesday off but not Friday. Result is the only day they were both home all day was yesterday (Saturday). For whatever reason, UNC Chapel Hill never has Easter Monday off so every year D2 has to head back to school right after lunch on Easter Sunday! Such a bummer not to have her home all day. But she will graduate in about a month - not attending UNC-CH for grad school so who knows what next year will bring.

Anyway - here is a rundown of the festivities of the weekend.

First - Gus, who is just too cool for words...

There was a cookie decorating extravaganza (kids only, I bought the stuff but thankfully they don't need my help for these sorts of things anymore)

And the aftermath of the extravaganza...

Then the beginning of the egg dying ritual...

speaks for itself

The right hand of D3 working on her egg...

The left hand of D3

The boy working on an egg

D2 working on an egg. Note the Carolina blue "UNC Equestrian Team" t-shirt...


And then the baskets of bounty to be found next morning...
The basket of a college girl - D2's basket contains a book Castles in the Air by the same author as Hal's Moving Castle - hopefully it is a fun read, Gift cards to Target and Michael's (she makes beautiful beaded jewelry), a few metal pieces for beading projects, sleeping pants, a new beach towel and enough chocolate to hold her until Christmas - she has the most discipline I've ever seen in a female - much less a kid. Even when she was young she would hoard her chocolate away in a hiding place so her siblings (ahem, certainly not her mother) would not swipe it - then she would dole it to herself over months.

The basket of the boy sits upon a stack of books and a Bakugan magazine and contains two cordless nunchucks for the Wii, Wii points card, a beach towel and enough candy to keep him bouncing off the walls for about a week.

And finally, the basket of D3: DVDs of a musical theme - one on Rachmaninoff, the Pianist, and The Triplets of Belleville which is animated and supposedly has something to do with Jazz, a few beading items, Target gift card, a new beach towel - and it all sat atop a stack of bride magazines.

There is the traditional egg hunt in which the eggs much be found before church as the bunny has hidden them in the house - then a lunch of deviled eggs and a few other small items. Gotta get those eggs eaten :)

Now the house is quiet. D2 has left, the boy is playing with his Wii, himself is off somewhere in the house - probably reading, and D3 is listening to a history channel program on the Apocrypha. All is well - except I wish the girl could have stayed until tomorrow morning.
Health care changes begin here?

The timeline for implementation of Obama care that is mentioned in the article can be found here...

This is a more brief outline from the Heritage Foundation
Obamacare is still just one signature away from becoming law, but the battle over its repeal has already begun. Key to this debate will be which elements of Obamacare phase in when. Back in December after Obamacare first passed the Senate, Heritage Foundation scholar Robert Book produced the following chart (pdf) detailing how the policy is scheduled to be implemented between 2010 and 2017. Highlights from each year include:

2010: Physician Medicare payments decrease 21% effective March 1, 2010

2011: “Annual Fee” tax on health insurance, allocated according to share of total premiums. Begins at $2 billion in 2011, then increases to $4 billion in 2012, $7 billion in 2013, $9 billion in the years 2014, 2015, and 2016, and eventually $10 billion for 2017 and every year thereafter. Two insurers in Nebraska and one in Michigan are exempt from this tax.

2012: Medicare payment penalties for hospitals with the highest readmission rates for selected conditions.

2013: Medicare tax increased from 2.9% to 3.8% for incomes over $250,000 (joint filers) or $200,000 (all others). (This is stated as an increase of 0.9 percentage points, to only the employee’s share of the FICA tax.)

2014: Individual mandate begins: Tax penalties for not having insurance begin at $95 or 0.5% of income, whichever is higher, rising to $495 or 1% of income in 2015 and $750 or 2% of income thereafter (indexed for inflation after 2016). These penalties are per adult, half that amount per child, to a maximum of three times the per-adult amount per family. The penalty is capped at the national average premium for the “bronze” plan.

2015: Establishment of Independent Medicare Advisory Board (IMAB) to recommend cuts in Medicare benefits; these cuts will go into effect automatically unless Congress passes, and the President signs, an override bill.

2016: Individual mandate penalty rises to $750 per adult ($375 per child), maximum $2,250 per family, or 2% of family income, whichever is higher (capped at the national average premium for the “bronze” plan). After 2016, the penalty will be increased each year to adjust for inflation.

2017: Itemized deduction for out-of-pocket medical expenses is limited to expenses over 10% of AGI for those over age 65.

Republicans better fight tooth nail and eyeball between now and November - then, IF they retake the house and eat into the Senate majority they had better FIGHT EVEN HARDER, not go back to their linguine spined - please like me - play nice tactics of the recent past.

Guess how this man voted on Obama care?

Give that admiral an extra stripe for not falling out of his chair laughing.