SUZYMOBILE's SparkPeople Blog SUZYMOBILE's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Steel Magnolias of Punta Gorda A five-generation story, in honor of Granny's 99th birthday. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>eel-magnolias-of-punta-gorda_12.html </link> Thu, 12 Jan 2017 15:40:02 EST Diet, day 1 I don't usually post just pictures, but this one was too good to pass up. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Sun, 3 Jan 2016 12:15:43 EST The seafood hypothesis Here's a sneak peek at a future column piece: <BR> <BR> Does Guy Fieri's "Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives" pique your appetite? Do friends and family torment you with lovingly Instagrammed photos of food, glistening with butter? Is the cartoon in which a waiter worriedly inquires, "Was everything all right? You didn't photograph your food!" seem like your personal in-joke? <BR> <BR> Have you ever been accused of (gasp!) food porn addiction? <BR> <BR> It might seem like a no-brainer, but a team ... Sat, 2 Jan 2016 19:32:54 EST New dog bed: Part 2 Here's the second installment. <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> You can also try entering the url in Internet Explorer. That worked for me when nothing else did. <BR> Fri, 1 Jan 2016 12:15:07 EST New dog bed: Part 1 Morticia tells me this is visible, so here we go again. If you can't see it here, it's on my YouTube channel for Sue Wade. <BR> <BR> You can also try entering the url in Internet Explorer. That worked for me. <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Fri, 1 Jan 2016 11:53:13 EST The rest of the story So much for the new dog bed. The makeshift comforter tree skirt is a winner. <BR> <BR> Now we'll have to leave the damn tree up year round, decorated appropriately. <BR> Hearts for Valentine's, shamrocks for St. Paddy's, eggs for Easter, sunglasses all summer, then the Halloween and harvest trees. <BR> <BR> I'm up for this. It's all about the girls. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Tue, 29 Dec 2015 13:48:31 EST Our own modest Christmas I'm a Christmas minimalist, though not quite as much as our neighbors who painted their old snow shovel with "Merry Christmas" and left it at that. <BR> <BR> We do have a wreath on the door (Walgreen's, $14.95, and perfectly presentable) and a red ribbon on our mailbox. Unfortunately, the county saw fit to tear up the street for a new sewer system, which left the ribbon spattered with mud. <BR> <BR> Inside, we have a prelit Walmart tree, now decorated with sparkly Walgreen's ornaments, two ... Sun, 13 Dec 2015 13:07:50 EST Deck the palms A little Florida Christmas decorating story. Merry Christmas! <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ck-palms.html </link> Sat, 12 Dec 2015 13:03:10 EST A classic returns--Happy Thanksgiving! <link><BR>e-thanksgiving-we-didnt-eat.html </link> Wed, 25 Nov 2015 19:42:05 EST Island colors Been a while since I've blogged. The muse strikes only rarely, now that I write more for a living. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>land-colors.html </link> Fri, 20 Nov 2015 12:25:22 EST Calling Elmer Fudd <link><BR>lling-elmer-fudd.html </link> Thu, 25 Jun 2015 11:37:14 EST Delusional <link><BR>lusional.html </link> Wed, 29 Apr 2015 10:13:05 EST Portrait of a bartender <link><BR>rtrait-of-bartender.html </link> Wed, 29 Apr 2015 08:48:10 EST Putting on the dog <link><BR>tting-on-dog.html </link> Wed, 25 Mar 2015 17:08:28 EST Best of the Blotter <link><BR>st-of-blotter.html </link> Wed, 4 Feb 2015 19:38:46 EST Blizzard envy <link><BR>izzard-envy.html </link> Wed, 28 Jan 2015 19:39:24 EST Remainders Sorry, folks. This one is dark and sad. Every once in a while, it has to be. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>mainders.html </link> Sun, 25 Jan 2015 20:53:45 EST Reentry into Amiable Depravity <link><BR>entry.html </link> <BR> <BR> This is the Florida-side version of reentry to the States. Now that the Big Trip is over, I expect to be posting to this blog now. <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Wed, 21 Jan 2015 18:19:27 EST This is war The girls have an old nemesis, a fat squirrel that taunts them by climbing atop the pool cage and sitting over their heads, frisking his tail. But now he has gone too far. He peed down onto our deck, the little bastard! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> "Roly, I can't believe he did that!" "No, it's true, Doxie. This is stinky squirrel piss all right." <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Mon, 19 Jan 2015 14:06:55 EST Reentry As I said to SparkFriend Robin: <BR> <BR> Can't say that the nice, long vacation was always a joy. We were sick half the time, I'm recovering from Balinese pneumonia now, and the house was a pigsty from Bill's brother, Bob. As Bob put it, and I can't say this in the blog because he reads it, "Your office is the only room where I didn't break something." Sadly, it was true. <BR> <BR> He had also bought a string mop, which I asked him about. <BR> <BR> "Oh, I was going to mop the floor but ... Sat, 17 Jan 2015 10:18:05 EST Insane! <link><BR>ane.html </link> Sun, 11 Jan 2015 06:05:49 EST Slouching again toward the West <link><BR>ching-again-toward-west.html </link> Fri, 9 Jan 2015 03:14:02 EST Farewell to Bali <link><BR>well-to-bali.html </link> Tue, 6 Jan 2015 13:09:24 EST What else could go wrong? <link><BR>t-else-could-go-wrong.html </link> Fri, 2 Jan 2015 06:25:42 EST Check this out again, if only for Morticia's responses! Gotta love Morticia. You should re-open these blogs if only to scroll down to the Comments section and read her take on things, which is always hilarious. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>perados.html#gpluscomments </link> Wed, 31 Dec 2014 23:31:51 EST As Resolutions Eve approaches Not sure this will work, but if not, it's worth hunting for on Facebook. Recent post by Anne Lamott, one of my favorite authors. <BR> <BR> Interesting that, without doing anything special--just eating to satisfy hunger--I've taken off 10 pounds on this vacation. I suspect that the air in the United States alone will make me gain it all back. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ory </link> Sat, 27 Dec 2014 23:13:26 EST Desperados <link><BR>perados.html </link> Sat, 27 Dec 2014 08:35:26 EST Gallery of the absurd, Kuta <link><BR>lery-of-absurd-kuta.html </link> <BR> <BR> And a similar gallery, from Pattaya, Thailand. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>lery-of-absurd.html </link> Fri, 26 Dec 2014 06:31:59 EST The street shrines of Kuta <link><BR>-street-shrines-of-kuta.html </link> <BR> <BR> Warning: This is a somber one. Thu, 25 Dec 2014 08:23:21 EST The lemonade stand <link><BR>-lemonade-stand.html </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> Thu, 25 Dec 2014 08:22:01 EST The Aussies of Kuta <link><BR>-aussies-of-kuta.html </link> Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:48:05 EST Journalist's holiday <link><BR>rnalists-holiday.html </link> Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:46:58 EST An afternoon at the spa In an effort to make things easier for my SparkFriends who have been so good about following the travel blog, I've decided to post each one as a link here. That I didn't think of doing this earlier is proof of my computer illiteracy. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>afternoon-at-spa.html </link> Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:45:46 EST How to read The Travelers I admit it. Google+ and Google's are not the most intuitive of sites. I ended up using Blogger as an engine because it was the simplest for my beginner skills to handle. <BR> <BR> Anyway, for those of you who might, like Beth, be trying to read in sane chronological order, the best way to do so might be to scroll all the way down to the dark-grey area and click on Blog Archive. <BR> <BR> Also, at this point, you will see a running counterpoint from Morticia Addams in the Commen... Thu, 18 Dec 2014 21:46:47 EST More traveling Approaching 1,400 hits now. I'm shamelessly reminding you to take a look. <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> By the way, since leaving Italy I'm quite sure that I've lost weight. I know this because I can see it in the mirror and feel it in the fit of my clothes. We had a scale in our room in Hua Hin, Thailand, and this woman who used to hop on and off the scale three times in quick succession every morning didn't touch it. Not once. <BR> <BR> The secrets of ... Tue, 16 Dec 2014 02:17:48 EST The travelers Wow, at this point my trip blog has had 957 hits from readers in 6 countries, including the Netherlands, France, US, Indonesia, Thailand, and the UK. If you want to catch up with it, it's at <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Sun, 16 Nov 2014 00:56:43 EST Travel blog If you'd like to read a few fun entries from my trip blog, they're at: <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Sat, 25 Oct 2014 08:58:12 EST Beauty and the beer Okay, now I'm bombarding you with stories, as I will be doing for the newspaper. I have a whole cache of them prepared for when we're gone, so here you go with the next one <BR> <BR> ________________________________________<BR>____ <BR> <BR> How does one control a boisterous biergartenful of customers, during peak World Cup action, with Germany whupping Argentina? <BR> <BR> Worse, try managing a crowd of opinionated German diners, each of whose mother made the perfect potato pancake acc... Wed, 17 Sep 2014 19:06:10 EST Sometimes a cigar is more than a cigar <img src=""> <BR> What favorite place might you leave not smelling as good as you feel? If you’re a cigar aficionado--a cigar bar. <BR> <BR> Pity the poor cigar smoker. Venues for smoking are few, and that stinky stogie compels even liberal barkeeps to fling up “No Cigar Smoking” signs. Smoke a cigar in the comfort of your family room, watching college ball with a Yuengling in hand? “Are you kidding me? If I’m lucky, the better half ... Wed, 17 Sep 2014 18:55:30 EST Home is at Royal Thai “Where you going, Kayoon?” <BR> <BR> “To the market! I need more candy!” <BR> <BR> Was this the whine of a chubby kid, giddy with a little extra allowance? Hardly. It was the excited cry of a 12-year-old Bangkok entrepreneur. <BR> <BR> Kayoon (June) had spread newspapers on the floor, laid out an array of brightly wrapped treats for sale, and experienced her first taste of business success. She had exhausted her stock, made a 104-baht ($5) profit, and was already darting down a crow... Wed, 17 Sep 2014 08:33:30 EST There's always a way Reclusive local personality Snook the Cat, of the new Snook’s Bayside Bar & Grill at Englewood’s Royal Palm Marina, has granted a rare interview to Sue. <BR> <BR> Sue: Now that the “Zeke’s” name has gone to Zeke’s Uptown on Dearborn Street, what’s it like having your name on Bayside Bar & Grill? <BR> <BR> Snook: Frankly, it should have borne my name all along. <BR> <BR> Sue: Snook, you’re no stranger to the Sun. Readers might recall how you fell overboard and were rescued by Billy and c... Wed, 3 Sep 2014 18:29:38 EST What bird is dumber than a chicken? Okay, so chickens have pecking order. And they're smart enough to run about even after decapitation. So, it's EASY for another bird to be dumber than that. And that bird is ... (drum roll!) ... the mourning dove! <BR> <BR> These creatures are the cows of the bird class. They never look up, merely grazing placidly until they're picked off by a hawk, leaving behind only a flurry of feathers. <BR> <BR> So, guess what? A mother dove has decided to leave two of her grown babies under the hed... Wed, 3 Sep 2014 18:24:54 EST GramCracker Cafe The GramCracker Café didn’t get its name from Nabisco. A couple who are themselves a gramma and a Florida cracker concocted it. <BR> <BR> The prerequisites for being a gramma are pretty easily met—just have a kid who has a kid, maybe even bake pies all the time. But what does it take to proclaim oneself “Cracker”? <BR> <BR> Lynne Miller, co-owner with husband Steve of Englewood’s GramCracker Café, is a gram by both measures, but can never—due to a technicality—be a cracker. She wasn’t ... Wed, 27 Aug 2014 19:37:33 EST A Hurricane Charley remembrance Over time, it occurs to you that your neighborhood seems like Restaurateur Row. You smell aromatic Thai spices wafting over the back fence, notice an eatery’s logo on a car parked up the street, are suavely greeted at the entrance to his family’s restaurant by a local kid you’d seen shooting hoops in his driveway that morning. <BR> <BR> That so many neighbor families own restaurants is a measure of the health of independents in this town full of big-box chains. Many of these families were... Wed, 27 Aug 2014 19:36:21 EST I have been remiss ... it's more than a game! Some of my friends were missing these little stories. <BR> <BR> It’s nearly 7:00 Wednesday night at Chubbyz in Port Charlotte. All eyes are riveted on the back of the dining room, where bartender Clare Donaldson wields the microphone to launch Big Dog’s Live Trivia Challenge, with husband Gene (said “Big Dog”) by her side. <BR> <BR> The crowd roars as each team name is announced. Sixteen teams in full regalia—with names like Betty’s Kids, The Cat’s Meow, It’s Only a Game, Here for the... Wed, 27 Aug 2014 19:34:38 EST Yo ho ho and a tankard of soup No matter how you look at it, 20 years in the restaurant business is a long time. When a whole family persists at it for more than half a century, it’s a saga. <BR> <BR> The Arbuckles of Venice and Nokomis are, variously, creative, eccentric, dogged, gregarious, flamboyant, occasionally overextended, and rarely boring. <BR> <BR> It all started with an eighteenth-century Cape Cod sea captain’s house that looked like something out of Christmas in Connecticut. In 1958, when Bill Arbuckle ins... Thu, 7 Aug 2014 14:40:00 EST Always worth the journey “Well it’s a little far out, but it’s always worth the journey. <BR> A little spot up the river where the real adventure begins.” <BR> <BR> --Jim Morris, “Nav-a-Gator Afternoon” <BR> <BR> Any cool place in Florida is a little far out (pun intended). Key West, for example, requires at least 100 miles of driving. <BR> <BR> People say the Nav-a-Gator Grill, nestled on a shady bend of the Peace River in Arcadia, is like Key West used to be--with the advantage that it’s not that far away. ... Sun, 3 Aug 2014 10:37:23 EST Calling Bobby Flay Male forays into cuisine once took place only grillside, spatula and fireproof mitt in hand, in a “Stand Back, Dad’s Cooking” apron, flipping burgers and franks to BF Goodrich consistency. Today you’re just as likely to hear one ask, “What do you think? Does my grilled caponata need more pine nuts?” <BR> <BR> Men are doing more cooking these days. It’s always “Oh, Butch does all the cooking at our house. I don’t even know where the salt is any more.” <BR> <BR> But why? Are all these guy... Sun, 3 Aug 2014 10:35:09 EST My new media home I've got a little more room to stretch out in the local paper's daily "things to do" supplement, plus the luxury of photos. It's kinda like moving from an army cot to a king-size--with a view. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>charlotte_sun/Default.aspx?href=SCC%2F<BR>2014%2F07%2F09&pageno=38&view=document </link> <BR> <BR> And a surprise of a welcome from my new editor, who is a dream to work with! <BR> <BR> <link><BR>charlot... Wed, 9 Jul 2014 18:27:06 EST Pirates of the Caribbean UPSTATE NY, CIRCA 1968: You tell the in-laws you‘re moving to St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and you might as well announce you’re leaving for the moon. Barbara Farlow’s mom inquires, “You’re going WHERE?!” <BR> <BR> The late Dave Farlow’s son Keith says the late sixties were the “renegade days” for his parents—as they were for many American expats. “Back then, there weren’t even grocery stores on St. Croix; they had to buy produce off a boat from Puerto Rico.” <BR> <BR> The enterprising ... Fri, 4 Jul 2014 15:00:49 EST