Monday, December 29, 2008

Existential Thoughts for the New Year

I have become an avid blog reader.  It started with my friend Alison's, blog and from there I discovered Lindsey's, and from there Elizabeth's and so on and so on.  Now I've become an outsider peering into the lives of all these women, all my age, all women I've known since we were just girls, leading insanely different lives.  Alison lives in New York, has an amazing career and is pursuing her dreams.  Lindsey still lives in Birmingham, near her family and has created a large loving family of her own.  Elizabeth and her husband live in DC and just had their first child. 

It's strange to me how four women, all raised within a few miles of each other turn out so differently.  With the exception of Alison, all our parents knew each other.  I used to spend the night at all of their houses and talk of the days when we would be adults.  My how my plan for myself is not what I had laid out.  I am not really even sure what I thought was going to become of my life, but I know that never in my wildest dreams did I think I was going to be living in Jackson, Wyoming digging my car out of the snow to go to work in a Tonic Bar! It's funny how life leads you in directions you never expected.  It's funny how even when you're there, you're not sure how you got there, or where you're going next.  I made plans and fantasized about my adult life when I was a child, and now I'm reflecting and waxing nostalgic about being a child- (when will we ever be happy and content with what we have RIGHT NOW ? )

I love reading about my old friends.  I love knowing that their lives are going in directions that make them happy.  I love knowing that I have no idea where mine is taking me. I hope that this new year will take me in directions that are exciting and new, as well as directions that will stretch my mind and help me to grow.  Maybe ten years from now you'll be reading my blogs about my children, maybe you'll be reading my blogs about my travels on my sailboat, maybe you'll be reading blogs about both- who knows! But I can tell you, that whatever you read from me in the future will be an adventure and I will be happy!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Yeah, Winter's here!

Forecast calls for cold, snow and limited hours of daylight.  

Whew!!!! This southern belle is OUT OF her element!!! 

Wish me luck =)

36-Hour Forecast







Tomorrow Night

Stay Warm on the Links

Snow Showers Late


3° F




Mostly cloudy skies this evening. A few snow showers developing late. Low 3F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 30%.

Snow Shower


19° F




Occasional snow showers. High 19F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 40%. About one inch of snow expected.

Stay Warm on the Links

Snow Shower


12° F




Variably cloudy with snow showers. Low 12F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of snow 50%. 1 to 3 inches of snow expected.

Sunset: 4:53 PM

Sunrise: 7:55 AM

Sunset: 4:54 PM

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Dec 26

Snow Showers Late




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Snow Shower




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Few Snow Showers




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Snow Shower




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Snow Shower




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Snow Shower





(New Post Below)

Thursday, December 25, 2008

How to Have Christmas in a hotel room

In Jackson, the motels and hotels often rent out rooms by the month throughout the winter.  Jeff is currently residing in one of the aforementioned hotel rooms: which is where I am spending Christmas this year.  After several hours of sitting around and staring at each other/the television, we decided to go to the grocery store. Here are some hints to live out of, and eat out of a hotel room:

first of all, you will need a few things:
1- microwave- I used to hate the idea of a microwave, but desperate times...
2- a large toaster oven, with bake, broil and toast settings
3- a Coleman stove

4- mini fridges help

When shopping, do your best to find things that are pre-cooked. The deli section of the grocery store is your best friend. 
Always buy for the amount of people you have- and dogs. 
Use what you have! When you're in a small space, you want to make sure to use up what you have leftover and not over-buy- otherwise you will be wasting a lot of food.

This year our Christmas consists of:
Cornbread stuffing casserole
Green beans
creamed corn
Deviled Eggs 
cranberry sauce
and Pumpkin Pie

see it's not all that different than your mom's Christmas dinner, just on a smaller scale and a little "ghetto-fied

The Ham and Pie we bought pre-cooked/made for us.  However, we put together and baked the casserole and boiled the eggs for deviling.  

The cranberry sauce, as it should be, came out of a can.  


And I'm sure you're wondering why we just didn't go out to eat, here's why:

Monday, December 22, 2008


I woke up this morning to 12 inches of new snow! Which is totally awesome and also a HUGE pain in the ass. I literally had to dig my car out of the snow. Be sure and check out the webcam today- you can't see much for all the snow! (actually make sure you click on the Snow King Web cam... 'cause that's a block from Jeff's apartment, where I am at the moment).

I've got a lot to do on my day off!! 

I'm headed to Kmart to buy some essentials:
zip-side snow shell pants so I can easily layer over my jeans
long-handled window scraper (those dinky ones we use back home do NOT cut it)
Gators- so that the snow (which is higher than my snow boots) does not slip INSIDE my boots and make my feet wet and cold.
a second pair of long johns- seeing as I am wearing them everyday now
puffy vest (although I think I might be headed to the Brows-N-Buy Thrift shop for that)
water-proof gloves

Other essentials not so related to snow that I need:
paper towels

Also I have to go register my new vehicle and get my Wyoming Plates! how cool?!?!

Okay, well I'm off to get some things done!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Layering... it's not just for fashion anymore!


It's COLD. 

it's too cold to snow.  It's negative one. that's -1. One degree below ZERO, thirty three degrees below freezing! that's really really cold! and it's only December! 

We all know that layering is the way to go when it comes to fashion, I mean DUH! but it can also be a rather functional survival technique.  And it's used in more than one aspect in my life... 

 I wake up and put my socked feet into my  furry house slippers (thanks Momma Clause!!) (two layers)

When I get out of the shower, I wrap up in a towel, keep it on then layer my robe on top.

Getting dressed for work: bottom half: Capline 1 or tights (anything heavier is too hot to be indoors in) Jeans or other pant, then if it's blizzardy conditions or I plan to be walking around for long periods of time my snow pants will go on top.  The top half: bra, wicking tank top, long sleeved shirt (or Capline/Thermasilk/Polarmax base layer), sweater or second "cute" top, vest (sometimes), scarf, jacket, hat. 

do not forget the gloves!!

layering AT work: coffee. okay, it's not really a layer- but totally necessary for survival

Lunch: bread, meat, cheese, lettuce, tomato, mayo, bread...

then when I get home and get ready to go to bed my FAVORITE layering technique: making the bed. 

bottom layer: sheet, fleece blanket {ME} patchwork quilt, comforter (folded in half to make it two layers in itself) chenille blanket, ELU!!! always top off the layering with a nice think furry layer of DOG!!! It's the only way to survive Winter in Wyoming. 

I'm aware none of this is new, per se, but interesting none the less the added steps I go through that I wouldn't have to do in Alabama. 

OH, PS. the HEATED SEATS in the Subey are the bomb! My ass is so nice and warm when I get in my car.

Next on the list of things to purchase for the vehicle is an automatic engine starter!!!

Okie Dokie- off to snuggle in deep under all those layers! Night

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Subbie do be doo

Yesterday was the day that the 2008 Silver Subaru Outback, and I were finally fated to be together!

Now those of you that know me well, know that I've been wanting a station wagon for years now. And a Subbie to boot!!! Well let me introduce you to my new baby:

This is what she looks like from the passenger seat (Jeff was installing my Sirius radio at the time, so there are wires in all the pictures... don't worry, he was able to completely hide all the wires!)
Her from the front:
Another view

Baby got so much room for JUNK in the Trunk!!!! (and there's storage underneath that panel there)

AND there is "hidden" storage in the back as well. There are two little panels on either side of the hatch- one, however, is equipped with a cigarette lighter jack so that I can plug things in while camping... or whatever.

I would like to give a shout-out to those that made our Union possible:
Fay "Baby" Ireland- My wonderful and amazing Grandmother
Bill "ChooChoo" Ireland- and is fabulous gift of love
Kelly "Daddy" Ireland- for being the go-between, benefactor extordinair and moral support
Mitzi "Momma" Ireland- for not freaking out when I told her I wrecked my car, moral support, her excellent organizational skills and in general putting up with my sorry ass
Lola "lola" Harkins for giving me a place to stay and driving me around, and hooking me up with Abbey who sold me the vehicle.
That leads me to Abbey Smith- the coolest chick car dealer in Jackson!

If you need a car in Jackson, go see Abbey at Wolf Motors.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I did it...

I wrecked my car.

Sunday on the way to work at 6:30 in the morning, I'm running a little late, it's snowing.  I turned into the parking lot and skidded out, slid into the curb and (at least I thought) broke my axle.  I called Jeff and got him to pick me up, take me to my house to take a shower and get some clothes together. I ended up staying at his place in town so that I could walk to work on Monday.  I got the car towed to the shop.. yadda yadda yadda.  They called: bent frame. Bottom line is if I had collision insurance, I they would total it. Sadly, I do not hae collision, just liability! wow!! I'm a loser huh? 

SO the search is on for a new car.  The bodyshop will buy my car for $500. And then I can take that whopping $500 to the dealership and put it towards a new one. SO. any suggestions on the perfect car for me? Under $18,000. preferably AWD or 4WD. four doors. etc.

I'm looking at Subarus and small SUVs

I'll keep you updated!

Sunday, December 14, 2008


My friend Sarah is a snowboard instructor at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.
She offered to teach me how to snowboard in exchange for a couple of beers... sweet deal! I'm in! So off to the village we went. Here's a few highlights of my first day riding!

Me and Sarah upon arriving...
After about an hour I was able to link a few turns! 
I almost look cool here... 
I made this face a lot...

Overall it was a successful day! I will definitely be returning to the mountain many times this season.  Maybe by the end of the season I'll be able to ride more than the bunny hill =)

Friday, December 12, 2008


Today was a loooong day!! 6:30 to 9 am I covered part of Sarah's shift before heading to Jack Dennis from 10 to 7. But feet hurt and I'm very sleepy, but for some reason am unable to fall asleep, even though I know that I have to work at 6:30 tomorrow morning as well.  So this evening when I got home, I went to my room to have some alone, quite time making (I can't tell you what, because some of you may be receiving such crafty items in the mail for Christmas).  But upon getting settled into my bed/office/studio to work on said crafty items, I noticed my room is too cold to be in without being under mass amounts of covers.  Don't get me wrong, the large amount of blankets and sleeping bags on my bed sure are cozy when you're asleep, but not so conducive for using two hands.  SO I set out to make my room a little warmer. 

Here is how an outdoors woman can not only insulate her room, but also finally find a spot for all that gear that's not being used again until spring.  

That crash pad that won't get used until spring?? A little duct tape and a spare sleeping bag... 

Simply cover with window dressing...

And voila! you have yourself a padded headboard that doubles as a window insulate!!

Stay tuned for more installments of "Tricia's First (Real) Winter" 

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Your name is WHAT???

Things like this annoy me.

Just because you're famous is NO reason to name your kid such things! If any one of us (regular) people were to have grown up with a name like Bronx Mowgli, we would never ever have heard the end of it.  We would have been tormented and teased for our names.  But for some reason famous people think it's important to get your name out there, by using your kid.  I guess it's a pretty good marketing ploy.  I haven't heard a damn thing about Ashlee Simpson in a while, but now that her kid has some ridiculous name, her picture and name is all over Yahoo! news' featured list. But back to the fact at hand: this is a human life we're ruining for your marketing! I understand there are way worse things that could ruin a child's life, like poverty, fear in the home, drugs etc etc, but a name is something that they can never get away from! Names are important.

A name can define you, a name gives you a sense of self and belonging. You can't help but feel a connection (no matter how silly) when you meet someone with your name.   I always like it when I meet another Patricia. Granted, my name isn't all that common  (like Sarah or Elizabeth, where you gals probably meet people all the time with your name), but at least there are people in the world that share it.  I bet Bronx Mowgli will never meet anyone else with that name. With the exception of the cartoon character in the Jungle book.  I hope that when I have children, my husband reminds me that I want to wait until after the drugs and endorphins wear off to name the child. 

Call me old fashioned, call me southern, call me crazy, but I think that when you name a child, a human being, there should be some rules involved. Like family names with a modern twist can be cool; names that have a meaning, yet still have a flow to them are also okay.  Names of cities are generally a little weird... only a few work like Orlando (Bloom), or Marietta, Dallas is fine... I personally think I will name my son Birmingham... maybe Atlanta.  Names after cartoon characters are kinda weird...  Maybe Birmingham Shrek or Atlanta Mulan.  Yep! that's it, I hope I have twins so I don't have to pick between the two!!!

I'm just saying... 

Monday, December 1, 2008

Have we lost the Christmas Spirit???

Well, judging by this, I think we totally have!!!

I mean seriously, since when is a man's life less important than a "super deal" on some toys for your kid????  I can kinda understand how the tragic accident may have happened, but when the store announced its closing due to DEATH by TRAMPLING that you may or may not have been apart of, you should leave and let the man's coworkers deal with his death in peace, NOT, I repeat, NOT complain that you NEED to BUY STUFF and keep shopping! 

I cannot believe the nerve of some people, I mean it's not like it was THE WHO concert of 1977...