A Tale Of Two &Amp;#43; Two Cities - Lost jobs and the art of shopping Blog at Allrecipes.com - 277852

Lost jobs and the art of shopping

A Tale of Two + Two Cities 
Jun. 20, 2012 6:09 pm 
Updated: Dec. 1, 2012 2:35 pm

It was the best of times, It was the worst of times. I had no idea that Dickens could sum up this period of my life so clearly. I truly wish this could be titled "the best of times", but alas, that would only varnish the truth and leave out the important things like friendship & hope. With that, I will slowly unwind the tale of the four cities involved and the cast of characters.

It started in the Los Angeles area in fall of 2010. I spied a post on the AR buzz by Baking Nana inviting folks in her area to her first roundup at her home on the outskirts of Los Angeles. I contacted her immediately to inquire if I qualified as an attendee though I lived across the Mojave from her, recently transplanted from Maui to Las Vegas. She generously welcomed me and so the tale begins. I nervously attended that first roundup and I was immediately welcomed by a big hug and a bunch of AR peeps who instantly made me feel welcome. I struggled to put screen names and real names together, and I still left there with a confusing string of names swimming in my head. I also left with the knowledge that these folks were my new found friends and so I started building a list connecting all the names and addresses of the folks so that I could keep them all straight....if not in my head.....at least in my data base :)  The first group included hostess with the mostess....Baking Nana, Marianne, Noemi & her sister Gabrielle, Keri and her two precious daughters (who have grown before our eyes by leaps and bounds)Patty Cakes and her beautiful daughter Tina,Cathy Meyers, Xray barb, Cozy Cook with her mother (who arrived early and left before I arrived fashionably late), KDub & Good Eats.

I arrived home in Las Vegas excited about the future and the next roundup that might occur. If any of you know, I am pretty spontaneous.....not always in a good way, but it usually works out. So I plotted  immediately and ran to the AR blogs and buzz and announced my roundup in Sin City aka Las Vegas. I tried to plan a more affordable time for air and hotels and narrowly missed Mother's Day weekend. (Thank you xray Barb for reminding me in my frenzy to put a date on the calendar)  So we spent almost 9 months planning the event and trying to round up AR peeps. As with most premature births, it seemed daunting and I had a to do list spinning in my head that constantly needed additions. I remember at that time that CatHill gave me some sage advice. Relax, enjoy, it will all come together (sure Eddie.....I mean Cat). After all she had already accomplished her first round up in the summer of 2010. Well it did all come together and we had a ball. We gathered some of the first group I met at Baking Nana's and added a few others from around the U.S. Let's see now...me aka mauigirl, Baking Nana, Marianne, xray barb, baby xray, Cathy Meyers,Keri, AllRecipes Elizabeth and her sister Rachel, Lady Sparkle, Magnolia Blossom and our Miss7Up. We also had a cameo appearance by LoveBreezy. If you read all the blogs you can see that we had a ball and I quickly announced that I would repeat this roundup in May 2012....same weekend!

I made my formal announcement in the winter of 2011 so that folks could start planning and saving for their trip to Las Vegas. I was so excited for the start of a new year and the promises that I thought it held for us. Little did I know some of my toughest times lay ahead. In January 2012, our son and only child was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer. It was a devastating blow and it still hurts to write those words today. I was instantly in mother mode and we flew to different clinicians and specialist to find the best treatment options for him. Our search led us to Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles and a treatment plan was underway. As I agonized over the unknown, I realized that several AR members had already bought their airline tickets and I had no idea if I could pull all of it off. Baking Nana stepped in along with my other attendees and took charge, offering to help pull this soiree off if I could not be in Las Vegas. Well, I attended to my kidlet and I made lists and planned for this gathering with or without me. As luck would have it, a few weeks before my roundup, the surgeon scheduled the surgery for the day before my roundup. Instantly, my peeps took over and so I left my home along with my husband and we went to LA to be with our son. I left maps and lists and food mostly ready to go  and tried to stage the house for the party and left a key under the mat for the peeps to have a party. Can you imagine???? I can! I knew that I had built a network of people that would pull this thing off to ease my burdens.

The surgery went well and they could find no sign of spread in his abdominal cavity or his lymph nodes and so we were all there together in Los Angeles rejoicing in some good news and counting on my peeps to carry off my party in Las Vegas. As we held bedside vigil, our son insisted that he wanted me to fly home to see my friends. After all, there were the two of us and his devoted partner and only one of us could be with him at a time. So I kissed them all good bye and headed back to Las Vegas and a quick 45 minute flight later, I was with my peeps being smothered with their love and enjoying every minute of it. I did arrive while preparations were still in motion. I dictated a few directions (after all I am the Queen) and jumped in the shower and tried to wash away the exhaustion of the past several months. What can I say, this group surrounded my family and lifted us upon their shoulders. We had some old and some new attendees, but they all felt like old friends by that weekend. Isn't that just an amazing thing, that these folks, who didn't know us very well came together and raised our spirits spearheading a rescue plan to ease my mind???? Well here is the list of these amazing AllRecipeeps......Baking Nana & NO baking papa, Marianne, Xraybarb, Cathy Meyers, Noemi, Gabrielle, Patty Cakes and her Carlos, Magnolia Blossom and new peeps Del Mar Girl, B.D. Weld and his bride, Bibi and Tabasco Mom and Allrecipe's own.....AR Elizabeth. These are fabulous human beings and if you ever get the chance to meet them....DO! I love them all!

As our lives settled into a new normal, I watched the plans leading up to the Buckeye Bash, the Southern roundup and the Midwest Roundup on the Allrecipes buzz and blogs. I cannot attend them all, but I live vicariously through their planned reunions and I rejoice in reading the blogs and seeing the photos after the party is over.  As I read about the planned roundups, I was especially touched by the fact that Mike Harvey was participating in the Relay for Life while visiting one of my fav peeps, Cathill, at her MidWest roundup. He offered to light a luminary to honor our son and his battle against this horrid disease. In case you don't know, Mike Harvey has battled this disease and all the fear that goes along with it over the last couple of years. He has committed to doing these walks wherever his journeys take him and I tell you....THIS MAN WALKS THE TALK!

So with that knowledge and our son safely ensconced at home, I plotted to surprise all the folks at the MidWest roundup. I tell you, I plotted and I weaseled info out of CatHill and attendees and I put all the pieces together without giving them a clue. My partners in this clandestine operation were my devoted spousal unit aka Sparky, Baking Nana & Marianne. My boys helped behind the scenes to arrange my standby flights. Until I hit Kansas City, I had no idea if I could pull it off. So I left my home at 4:20 in the morning the day of the Relay for Life. No room on the first flight to Dallas.....but the 7 am flight BINGO!. I felt sure it was all coming together as planned (2 pm arrival in KC).
I arrive in Dallas and new challenges begin. Don't know if any of you have used that particular airport before, but it has a rail line that links the various gates. So I rode the rail from gate to gate in search of a seat to wing my way to KC. I am not exaggerating when I say that NOT ONE connecting flight was in the same terminal. I spent my day going from gate to gate starting to believe that I would not make the relay after all. I swear the only thing that kept me going were the calls from Baking Nana, Marianne and Sparky. They were relentless cheerleaders! I finally succumbed to hunger and sat down for dinner and a much needed glass or two of wine and YIKES my phone rings and it is Cat on the ID wondering where her flower delivery driver was (me). I looked at that phone like it was a rattlesnake and I refused to touch it. I had lied and weaseled so much to Cat that I was plumb out of weasel:) Dinner done and off to catch a train and the hope of the last two flights to KC that night. As luck would have it , the 7:00 pm was a GO!!!!!!

I arrived in KC about 8:30....I think. I was so out of it that I can't remember anymore. Grabbed my rental car in five minutes and set my g.p.s. to Kearney MO. Checked into the hotel shared by the other peeps and hightailed it to the local high school track and the Relay for Life.  I ran to the grandstands and quickly realized that I didn't know what Mike Harvey (or his beautiful bride) even looked like and the darkness would not make the task any easier. New plan is formulating.....I will walk the track the wrong way looking for one of the peeps I know. While perusing the track, I look down straight into the eyes of my Magnolia Blossom. I cannot explain the emotions. It was a mixture of relief, excitement and love for my old friend and my new ones. I ran down the steps and we all hugged and cried with joy! Mike Harvey then led me to the luminary in honor of our son and we watched the solemn ceremony and listened to the names of those that are fighting those that have survived and those who have lost this horrible battle.

Next plan of action...surprise the rest of the peeps at the hotel. Now that was the easy part. I followed Magnolia Blossom in my car and she found LadySparkle & Christine NICU having a drink together outside the motel. I stepped around the corner when she announced a surprise gift and the tears and hugs started all over again. Then Christine NICU went back to her room to drag her exhausted mama (Candice) out to see what the "Cat drug in". Once again, hugs and giggles of joy! I had to show Candice that I was wearing the bracelet she made me the year before while attending my Las Vegas roundup. The beaded bracelet is in clear crystals with the word HOPE spelled out. (Little did I know how much HOPE I would need in the year to come.) I made them all promise to NOT spill the beans to Cat Hill at the planned roundup the next morning. I stopped by Bea's Floral to pick up my delivery and drove through hill and dell to find Cat's place. Suddenly, I realized that I did NOT have CatHill's address and my dam#ed TMobile phone had no service in these parts. Holy Batman....what to do!!!! As I followed the road for the delivery instructions, I see in the distance, orange flags on a white fence and a orange sign at the driveway welcoming the Midwest crowd. How do you spell      R E L I E F ????? Got to the door, and as you saw in the other blogs, the rest is history. The attendees....Hostess CatHill, bhawk, mi being mi, Mike Harvey & his bride, Candice & daughter Christine NICU, Magnolia Blossom, Lady Sparkle, CooCar and of course moi.....aka mauigirl :)

The time was short but the conversations long and the food delicious. Most of the events were covered beautifully in all the other blogs. The hospitality could not have been more welcoming though I really hadn't RSVPd. I had a whirlwind day and a half and then the task of getting home. I thought I had accomplished the tough part.....NOT. I arrived at KC airport and checked in at 5pm on Sunday. I was able to catch the third flight out to Chicago about 8pm????(It is all such a blur) Ran to a gate a mile away at O'hare only to find that the last flight to Vegas was way overbooked. Off to a hotel for the night (11 pm)  and a 4 am wakeup call to try to make the first flight to Vegas. Well that was overbooked too so run to another gate and I was on a flight to LA. If I can just get that far, Sparky or Marianne or Baking Nana can retrieve me :) It was five and a half hours in a middle seat between two big dudes, but I was just grateful to be winging my way toward my side of the country. Arrive in LA....no luck on the first flight to Vegas and they had forgotten to roll me over with my flight status so that started a new challenge and a couple hours to work it out. Next flight to Las Vegas I hit the JACKPOT! One hour later, I am reunited with Sparky and at my doorstep exactly 23 hours after I checked into KC airport to come home. WHEW!!! Are you as exhausted as I am/was? What a trip....but a great one it was and I even lived to tell the tale:) I have said it before & I will say it again.....if you can get to a roundup DO. If you cannot, organize one in your area. It can be as simple as meeting for coffee or visiting a local farmers market. Your imagination can dictate many possibilities. The only thing I would recommend is to have HOPE and perseverance. It will take you a very long way toward your goals.

So about now you are thinking there were really only three cities in my tale..... Los Angeles, Las Vegas & Kansas City.....but you would be wrong. With all that has occurred in the last several months, I have decided that life is WAY TOO SHORT. This brings me to my next blowout. I am inviting one and all to meet us in the fourth city .....Lahaina.... West Maui on October 17, 2013.

This is the shoulder season for Maui travel, so air, cars and accommodations should be more favorable. You can fly in and out whatever dates work for you, but the official date for the big gathering is Thursday Oct 17, 2013. I know this is NOT a cheap trip, but I am trying to offer as much money pinching strategies as I possibly can. I will be staying at the Papakea resort at Kaanapali in a condo and I think this would be a great property to accommodate all the peeps. They have studio, one, two and three bedroom units at all price points. My girlfriend has quite a few units that she manages, so below, you will find a link to my old condo and if you scroll down the page, click on "see all my listings". She has quite a few and if you tell her that you are with Allrecipes/Julie and Miranda will  offer a discount. Beyond any sightseeing, we plan to do alot of communal cooking and just plain hanging out together. I know that many will be sharing condos to cut the cost of this trip even further. I also suggest that you start researching the airlines that might bring you to Maui (airport code OGG) from your area and if you want to save slowly, buy your favored airline's gift certs so that you can be saving toward the cost of the trip every week or month. You will be surprised at how fast you can realize that ticket. You might also consider sharing a condo with another peep. I am sure there will be an opportunity for most folks to share if they want to. I will be starting a Facebook page to chat about this in the next week so stay tuned for more info and more fun. A hui hou kakou! (until we meet again) Warmest aloha, Julie aka mauigirl

You are welcome to contact me at julie@mccuiston.net. Please include your screen name and your real name.

My heart sank today while standing in the checkout line at the market and reading that Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne's son has been diagnosed with MS. You see, the Sharon Osbourne Colorectal Foundation at Cedars Sinai has been very helpful & generous to our family at this challenging time in our lives. We could not be more grateful for their help and consideration for us and many others battling this terrible disease. We know what it is like to have a seriously ill child and we wish their son Jack a long, happy and healthy life. Take care all.Julie 6/21/2012


Our baby and his therapy dog Ari
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Follow the orange flags to CatHill's
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Our handmade bags, and my bracelets nd nametag and of course my peeps!
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The view from CatHill's front porch.....Beautiful!
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Thankfully this was hanging at the gate!
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Mauigirl Ulupalakua Ranch Store Upcountry is one of my favorite places on da island. Maui no ka oi
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The view from my nest on Maui...this makes me smile :)
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Hence the screen name :)
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Jun. 20, 2012 6:44 pm
Ah indeed, if you can go to a roundup do! Although a 23 hour flight seems a bit excessive to leave from one, sorry I hate to travel but I did indeed love seeing you, mauigirl! She is so right if you can do your own roundup it is so worth the effort. Trust me, you can sleep later when it is over. Maui 2013, I can think of 2 ladies that spent the day with you that are already plotting and planning attending! Hugs and may your son continue to get better! XO Cat
Jun. 20, 2012 7:02 pm
Sorry To Hear About Your Son, And His Cancer Issues. It Must Be Hard, I Know It Would Be For Me.
Jun. 20, 2012 7:06 pm
Thank you King Sparta. It has been a nightmare but we really do have hope on the horizon.
Jun. 20, 2012 7:25 pm
Cat, Thank you again for your generous hospitality. Your smile warmed my soul and the high from your roundup got me through the challenging travel.....XO
Jun. 20, 2012 7:30 pm
Hah, saving my penniess like crazy! The thing with going to round-ups is that now that you've met these peeps, you can't possibly miss one. But you still want to go to new ones! What to do? Those lottery tickets better hit big, I'm telling ya!
Jun. 20, 2012 7:44 pm
Ah man... I am wiping my tears... will be back to comment more in a couple of minutes. So much to say and the right words are failing me....
Jun. 20, 2012 8:50 pm
Magnolia Blossom...I am counting on you for Maui kid. I can't wait to buy you your first lei LOL!
Jun. 20, 2012 8:52 pm
Baking Nana....I have never known you to be short on words LOL My Sparky always ask what the two of us can find to talk about all the time. I tell him we are great at just talkin' bout nuthin :)That's just how good friends are :)
Jun. 20, 2012 8:53 pm
Oh, mauigirl, this is a replay of many wonderful, memorable times. I'm so sure that this will happen many more times, but you know, the first is important. I can still see myself waiting in front of HomeGoods to see Patty Cakes for the first time those several years ago. My family was so surprised that I'd go meet a total stranger. But that's what we've done----over and over again. It's not going to end. Thank you for wonderful memories. Love you, gal!
Jun. 21, 2012 3:48 am
Thank you so much for sending me the link...I've been a bad girl about getting to the AR site! What a wonderful story and such a happy ending. I will surely mark my calendar and start filling my piggy bank (the move to OH this month has sorta' put a dent in the funds) for the Maui Meet. Take care...
Jun. 21, 2012 4:44 am
mauigirl, your surprise visit caught us all off our guard! The CIA could use some of your stealth, and your ability to maintain that stealth in the face of the airline shuffle is commendable! Had it been me, my cover would have been blown on the evening news as the guy that had enough and the TSA threw in jail to cool off. ... It seems inadequate to just say thank you for being at the relay and roundup! Spirits were already high but you elevated them even higher- and I didn't that could have been possible! ... Thank you for your kind words.
Jun. 21, 2012 5:52 am
Such willpower and stamina. I couldn't have done what you did. Heck at my age it takes me an hour and a half to watch "60 Minutes". Great blog and great friends. Prayers to you and your family. Hopefully Hawaii bound. Mrs. bd.weld is looking forward to it.
Jun. 21, 2012 5:53 am
Ah shucks, but it wasn't just me that made the roundup what it was. It was EVERYONE that came! Ditto what Mike said! The lady at the feed store where I got those fresh eggs for the quiches was regaled with your stealthy sneak in. She loved the story and is sure I need to take the Kodiak moment in and share it with the flower ladies :) BTW most of those flowers are going strong still.
Jun. 21, 2012 6:10 am
Marianne, Like the bag says, the journey starts with one step. Cathill gives credit to Baking Nana for that quote:) Aren't you glad we took that first step?
Jun. 21, 2012 6:12 am
swchef, Thanks so much for stopping by. As my island girlfriends would say....sistah dis is long :) It is, but it is our journey and worthy of telling. HOPE like the dickens that you make it to Maui. Start buying those airline gift cards kid:)
Jun. 21, 2012 6:18 am
Mike Harvey, there are NOT enough kind words to describe you and your lovely bride. You two are an awesome couple and I am lucky to call you friend. BTW, Sparky was shocked that I could be so stealthy....I am usually the worst secret keeper. Maybe I am learning something in my old age :)
Jun. 21, 2012 6:21 am
bd weld....You and the Mrs. best make it to Maui. It would NOT be the same without you two. You two have been our champions throughout this difficult time and we are more grateful than we could ever express:) Warmest aloha!
Jun. 21, 2012 6:23 am
Mauigirl, you are amazing! Prayers for your son and your family. AR peeps are the best!
Jun. 21, 2012 6:24 am
Cathill.....you should also share the blogs regaling the tale to the ladies at Bea's. Those ladies loved the story leading up to the surprise and they would be tickled to know that it worked out!. BTW I forgot to mention how friendly the folks from MO were in general. They were so hospitable and polite and I look forward to coming back to your neck of the woods soon.
Jun. 21, 2012 6:26 am
Sassy.....I am like most mamas...tough when the going gets tough and the biggest sap for all the love part. Those are two traits that keep me going :) Sassy...might you make it to Maui?
Jun. 21, 2012 6:38 am
I was going to say something like 'I am woman, hear me roar!', but then you have Mike Harvey in there too. I half seriously thought about coming to Vegas the first time, but life keeps getting in the way. I'm not sure we could make it across the ocean!
Jun. 21, 2012 6:44 am
Wow, you've had a heck of a 2012 so far...think you earned some down time for the remainder of the year. Can only say that you are in the truest sense an "Ambassador" for AR. I'm sorry that this year's family reunion will keep me from attending the Seattle meeting, but I hope at some point I can meet all of you. Good news about your son, and I'm hoping to read a blog soon that he has whipped that horrible disease.
Jun. 21, 2012 6:52 am
Mauigirl, you rewrote the meaning of the word hospitality when you hosted us in Vegas! I agree with you in encouraging everyone to try to meet each other. After "talking" online, it is amazing to meet face to face! If I didn't have another trip planned, I would have tried to make another gathering this year. Dying to make the Southern Roundup, so I'll have to put that on my bucket list!
Jun. 21, 2012 6:53 am
Mauigirl-what a blog. I admire your perseverance, determination, and your love for your son. You are so brave to trek via standby flying to meet AR Peeps. I would never of thought of flying standby and hope to get somewhere. I love the AR roundups everyone has shared on AR. I hope you have time to relax after all you have gone through recently. I am sending my prayers and thoughts to you and your family. Here is wishing your son the best.
Jun. 21, 2012 7:15 am
Julie, you are the definition of faith, hope, trust and perseverance! In addition to those, you are a wonderful friend. I am so excited about the Seattle trip....and the opportunity to meet you! XOXOX!
Jun. 21, 2012 7:48 am
Mauigirl, I really had no idea that all this was going on in your life the past year. I had tears in my eyes reading about your son, and so relieved to hear the last surgery left your family with good news. I sure admire how you still pulled it all off and surprised everyone, I now put all the bits and pieces together from the other blogs. I wish I could swing Hawaii, always been a dream of mine to visit there. I do know I can always see the fun in stories and pictures here though. I'll for sure keep your son in my prayers. Your story made me think of my favorite quote, "Life is not about learning to survive the storm, but rather learning how to dance in the rain".
Jun. 21, 2012 7:58 am
I'm so glad things went as well as they did under the circumstances. Hoping your son gets well quickly. You are amazing. I'd be a frazzled wreck after the first hour!
Jun. 21, 2012 8:12 am
It was a good time, wasn't it Julie? And, such a beautiful area of our nation too. I just love Cat's place. I've been in my own yards since coming home. And, NOW I know who to call when I have a covert mission to carry out! LOL! You're good dear Jules, REAL GOOD! Miss you already.
Jun. 21, 2012 8:17 am
Oh, And, I meant to add..... Doesn't "Mothering" take on a whole new meaning when you've got a sick adult child facing a disease you've had no experience with? Colds, the flu, scraped knees, broken bones, even those surgeries like tonsilectomies and appendectomies we can deal with, but CANCER. That was something I didn't have a remedy for in my "Mother's Bag Of Tricks." It throws us for a loop because I think we feel so helpless. For our kids, ....I now ALSO know the true meaning of COURAGE!!!
Jun. 21, 2012 8:33 am
Holy Crepe, the next time I think I have a busy day planned, I will remember your tour around the country all while mothering a sick son. Keep your chin up, kid
Jun. 21, 2012 10:18 am
Oh what a WONDERFUL story and the best part is to hear that your son is on his way to wellness! But I love all the stealth "CIA" stuff (I really did used to work for the real CIA and they should probably hire you!)....where there is a will, there is a way! DH and I are still trying to get all our ducks in a row to attend the upcoming Southern Roundup in PC, FL....and I just read the info to DH about the Maui Roundup in 2013 and his eyes lit right up! We both love Maui and since we have time to save $$ needed for that roundup, who knows? Perhaps we will be able to show up for that one! Great great blog Mauigirl - there are so many of you out there that I would just love to meet.....here's hoping! Cindie
Jun. 21, 2012 11:13 am
All I can say is WOW! I could feel myself becoming over anxious just reading about all the time you spent in airports, Mike might have had a close encounter with TSA but I would have stroked out! I am so happy for the news your son and you got after his surgery. (((HUGS))) to you all, you are great peeps!
Jun. 21, 2012 12:13 pm
Sassy...you are welcome on my doorstep any time and I bet I could get more than a few peeps here to meet you....another roundup!
Jun. 21, 2012 12:16 pm
lutzflcat, Thank you for your kind words. I am so disappointed that you cannot make it to the Seattle thing :( Will you be able to make the southern roundup or maybe the Maui one? Please, please, please.
Jun. 21, 2012 12:19 pm
Thanks Bibi. We enjoyed your company so much and we also loved your partner in crime...Tabasco Mom. I sure hope you two come to Maui! Southern roundup is on my bucket list too along with all the others. What's a girl to do?
Jun. 21, 2012 12:23 pm
Lela, thanks so much for the kind words and and encouragement. He still has a long way to go and a long hard chemo is on the horizon. We can only pray that he comes out of this healthy and strong again.
Jun. 21, 2012 12:40 pm
Wyattdogster....I cannot wait to give you a big ol' hug in Seattle!
Jun. 21, 2012 12:42 pm
Sherri, I love that quote too, but sometimes it is so hard to keep dancing :) Come to Maui kid!
Jun. 21, 2012 12:43 pm
ibbz, I swear I kept going on the wings of everyone I love! Hope you are grilling fish on those cedar planks.
Jun. 21, 2012 12:46 pm
Candice, this journey has taught me so much and you are so right when you say that this is a disease that defies kisses on booboos. Thanks for being my rock during these difficult days. XOXOXOXO
Jun. 21, 2012 12:47 pm
redneck gramma.....I know that you could outdo me in the perseverance and hard work department any day kid! Might I see you in Maui?
Jun. 21, 2012 12:50 pm
Cindiedee....I would love for you guys to come to Maui. I promise, you would love all the peeps and if you love Maui...that would make you love it even more:) Email me when you get a chance soo I can add you to the big maybe list:)
Jun. 21, 2012 12:51 pm
Bigshotsmom, you rock! Might we be seeing you on Maui?
Jun. 21, 2012 3:10 pm
Julie, as always, beautifully written and beautiful memories. Why do you always make us cry! I am so down for Maui - wouldn't miss it for the world. Need to put a fare alert. Love ya!
Jun. 21, 2012 4:25 pm
Hi DelMarGirl...I want to make you laugh and get caught up in the moment with maybe a tear here and there. I am so HAPPY that you will make it to Maui.
Jun. 21, 2012 4:39 pm
Omgosh! !SSSSOOOO SORRY! ! I read this this morning and forgot to write a review! 100 Stars for an Excellent and ever so entertaining blog! ! Laughed myself off the couch and tickled Pink with each word I read;);). Oh yeah, I cried too! All together Now, SHOCKER! ! HAHA I am soooo checking Maui off My bucket list! Can not WAIT! Love the fact that you are soo Sneaky! !
Jun. 21, 2012 4:42 pm
How long is the flight? Kinda skerty cat here. Never flew over water before. Then again, never flew to Vegas. Sigh! I'll be OK!
Jun. 21, 2012 4:47 pm
Please Puulllteezzzz Give Don and JC a big AR hug from this family of Friends!!! God Bless
Jun. 21, 2012 6:13 pm
Patty Cakes....5 hours from LA. We will be just fine kid! I will pass along your hugs when I get my hands on my too skinny kid :)
Jun. 21, 2012 10:23 pm
My heart sunk today while standing in the checkout line at the market and reading that Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne's son has been diagnosed with MS. You see, the Sharon Osbourne Colorectal Foundation at Cedars Sinai has been very helpful to our family at this challenging time in our lives. We could not be more grateful for their help and consideration for us and many others battling this terrible disease. We know what it is like to have a seriously ill child and we wish their son Jack a long, happy and healthy life. Take care all.
Jun. 22, 2012 1:53 am
Too many of us know that sinking heart. It's moments like this that we bleed emotionally for those that have been so unselfish in supporting their cause(s).
Jun. 22, 2012 9:28 am
well Maui, I will meet you on Maui when they build a bridge so I can drive there, they connect a ferry to take me, or RNGrampa can figure out how to hold enough gas in our boat to ensure the journey. I fear little in life, tame birds and flying are 2 things that creep me out. Flying OVER water, well that is a little much. I flew to LA in my teen years, the trip home was rough and I got skeered, now I need major prescribed medication/drugs to enter the torpedo waiting to crash or explode like think they call an air craft.
Jun. 22, 2012 9:49 am
Oh my sweetheart, Julie! You are one of the most amazing, awesome, intelligent, generous, loving, talented women I know! I thank you humbly for being my friend. You own a piece of my heart and always will! Thank you for this tender, funfilled blog. When I grow up, I want to be just like you! Please give Mike, Don and J.C. my greetings and a kiss from Cathy Myers and get some for yourself too. I love you, dear friend! Randy and I will be seeing you soon and most definitely in Maui!
Jun. 22, 2012 11:04 am
Mike Harvey, Ain't that the truth??? That pit in the stomach when you hear some devastating news is so hard to tamper down. We have been blessed y the generosity of the Osbourne foundation like many others and when this all settles down and I have some extra $$ I will give to this low overhead foundation. It is all run by volunteers and it is nice to know that you are not paying some CFO 6 figures to run the charity :)
Jun. 22, 2012 11:08 am
RNG....I think it is time to put on your big girl panties and go out on a limb kid. Life is way to short and I try like he!! to not let the fears get in my way.....though not always successfully :)
Jun. 22, 2012 11:10 am
Cathy Meyers Thank you so much for the lovely compliments. You are ever so kind. I can't wait for all of us to get to Maui and everyone knows that the party doesn't start till Cathy Meyers shows up XO
Jun. 23, 2012 11:12 pm
Wow Julie you had a busy time there. I have only been to one roundup but I would surely make them all if I could only persuade the lottery gods to shine on me. Loved your blog. I will most certainly keep your son in my thoughts and prayers. I look forward to seeing you soon in Seattle.
Jun. 24, 2012 11:50 am
OTG! I see someone else has the same regard for flying that I do! However, my two Katkateers are truly wanting to make this a bucket list journey. I'm with RNG, though! My cousin has MS, she exercises like a fiend and she is doing well. It can be lived with. Thanks to you, I have now a new favorite lunch food. Spring rolls! I can make them YEAH! Oh and thanks to Chef John's video, that really helped me figure out what I did wrong the first time. UGH, lunch is over and I need to get outside and work in the yard.
Jun. 25, 2012 5:25 am
Good morning Mauigirl! I can't wait for the Maui round up. What a blast that will be. I have to tell you, it was really hard to be in on your secret trip and not accidentally spill the beans on the Buzz. I realize now that flying stand-by isn't all it is cracked up to be! I was worried that you would spend the whole weekend circling Dallas airport! The friendships that have been made through AR are priceless.
Jun. 25, 2012 8:11 am
Pelicalgal, If I hit the lottery, I would love to charter a plane and bring a whole plane load of folks to the southern roundup. Wouldn't that be a kick? Can't wait to see you in Seattle!
Jun. 26, 2012 8:30 am
Cathill....Make sure you give my email to the Katkateers! I sure hope they represent the midwest!
Jun. 26, 2012 8:31 am
Baking Nana....you are so right. We have made some amazing friends from all over the world through AllRecipes :)
Jun. 26, 2012 10:27 am
Maui, I have hiked up them big girl panties (nearly to the point of a wedgy ewww):P and I do fly if I must, but it takes many hours of prep to get me ready for the journey. I will keep Maui in mind, heading to the coasts of Alaska soon for a fishing trip-come meet me in Alaska?
Jun. 27, 2012 9:59 am
Such a touching story! I'm so sorry you and your family had to go through with that. When I was little my youngest brother had cancer and although I was only 12 at the time, I remember how hard it was on my parents and baby brother-the whole family really. And for you to pull off the gathering all at the same time too! You amazing person you! Wonderful to have such fantastic friends and family! I haven't made it to a round-up yet, but I look forward to meeting you and other recipeeps in the future! Thanks for sharing!
Jun. 27, 2012 4:41 pm
redneck gramma....I hate those wedgies thingy dingys! I could elaborate...but I will spare everyone a gross out factor:) When and where will you be in Alaska. I am heading north at the end of July. Would love to catch up with you.
Jun. 27, 2012 4:42 pm
Lissa....Thanks for the encouragement. There is nothing that prepares one for this diagnosis. Isn't it wonderful that others carry you on their shoulders though. I will NEVER forget the kindness and concern that has been given to us :)
Jul. 30, 2012 11:46 pm
I live in Lahaina, so I would DEFINITELY like to attend if we don't move to Kauai. I'll email you closer to the date. Great blog Mauigirl! :)
Aug. 9, 2012 8:03 am
CULTURECOOKER..... I am so happy to hear we have another AR peep on da island! CAN"T wait to meet you kid!!!! Email me so we can stay in touch. I might be over this fall.
Aug. 15, 2012 1:30 pm
Aloha, Mauigirl! I'm over here on the east side of the Big Island, and would like to go to the next round up. I do have company coming over from the mainland about that time though. I'll have see how I can juggle both to keep me and my guests happy! LOL
Aug. 15, 2012 1:56 pm
Oh, and BTW... Did you ever get something going on FB? I think if you search just my name into an FB search, you'll find me in Kea'au. Friend me if you can so I can stay in touch for the Lahina round up.
Aug. 15, 2012 1:57 pm
Oh, and BTW... Did you ever get something going on FB? I think if you search just my name into an FB search, you'll find me in Kea'au. Friend me if you can so I can stay in touch for the Lahina round up.
Aug. 16, 2012 7:53 pm
Royall......Please email me with your facebook name....cannot find you :(
Dec. 1, 2012 2:35 pm
Please email me byron@LuxDigs.com www.Luxdigs.com
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Home Town
Olympia, Washington, USA
Living In
Lahaina, Hawaii, USA

Member Since
Feb. 2008

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Cooking Interests
Baking, Grilling & BBQ, Slow Cooking, Asian, Mexican, Italian, Southern, Healthy, Dessert, Quick & Easy, Gourmet

Gardening, Reading Books, Music, Charity Work

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About Me
I have been married for 43 years to the most amazing man on the planet. He is quiet and deliberate and I am NOT. We have one grown son (and his partner) that we adore. Because they work for the airlines they drop in on a flight frequently and we feel so lucky for that. We retired after 30 years at our careers from our native Olympia to Maui and now most recently retreated to Las Vegas to try to ride out this horrendous economy. We bought a small home here and I gutted it and am putting it back together, so I spend most of my time fine tuning the decorating and now I am plunging into a full tropical landscaping to remind us of our beautiful Maui. I miss the PNW, but NOT the weather. Miss the razor clams and the wild beaches of Washington and Oregon. Miss my friends too. Happy to have my friends from Allrecipes though. The four legged critter you see on my profile is a five year old yorkie/bichon who is the greatest little (9 lbs) girl ever. Quiet and calm, but so excited about life.
My favorite things to cook
I love to cook just about anything...just mostly like the art of cooking and baking and sharing my art with friends and families. Love the smells that emanate from my kitchen and the familiar memories that come flooding back. The scents from my kitchen are probably my favorite thing in the house.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mother used to like to make a big deal out of almost any holiday, so I have followed through with that tradition. Valentine's Day, Christmas, St. Paddy's day, Thanksgiving, Easter, Oscar night are just a few of my favorite cooking traditions. Birthday parties for all my loved ones are something I love to do too.
My cooking triumphs
The first time I mastered sauce bearnaise, or raviolis from scratch or my first perfect cheesecake or my first wedding catering job or meeting Julia Child (about 25 years ago).
My cooking tragedies
(See above) Well....Julia was so cranky and rude it ruined my love of her.....so I sold all my Julia Child cookbooks (some of them signed) at a garage sale for $1.00 apiece. Now I wish I would have kept them of course. I guess Julia was just having a bad day:( & I was foolish of course.
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