Archive for the 'Family' Category

American Girl Riot

August 14, 2007 | Family

I received an email from Studs’ oldest daughter the other day that had me dying. “T” has allowed me to share it with you. I think she needs to write a book. Enjoy!


Sorry this is lengthy but I thought I’d share with you my lunch hour experience today at the store that will well go down as enemy number one in the book of every father’s worst wallet nightmares come true – The American Girl Place in Chicago.

You know that I don’t have a daughter, but I’m lucky enough to have a goddaughter, and her sixth birthday is coming up in a few days. I decide that I’m going to be “Aunt of the year” (as the lady on the AGP hotline told me when I called to make the reservation) and take her to afternoon tea at their cafe. The reservation is set for Sunday. I set out at noon today to get her a Bitty Baby doll so she can start her collection and her parents can kick my ass for how much all the accessories cost that she’s going to want to get with Bitty Baby.

So, at noon I run out because, according to our Kronos time software here, I’ve now officially got less than an hour to get from my building, across the city to the store, make the purchase, and hi-jack a cab back to the office in time to “punch back in”. So the race begins….

I literally stole a cab from some poor guy waiting with his suitcase. I didn’t realize it until I was already hopping into the cab and well, I figured if I was this rude already, why redeem myself?! I’ll just hope he’s not an attorney that works in my building and get on with it. The guy shrugged his shoulders at me and I mouthed a sincere “I’m sorry” with batted eyes and we took off. 8 minutes, a maniac cab driver, and one good bout of carsick nausea later, I’m standing in front of the store.

The store is, in a word, unbelievable. Where was this place when I was a kid?! If it did exist, I guarantee you my father made hell and high water sure that I didn’t know about it. I was fascinated and dizzy at the same time. There was so much to see. There are 3 floors of purple and pink walls with every doll, accessory, and amenity that goes with the dolls that you can possibly imagine. There are so many things in this store that there is a Concierge when you first walk in to answer any questions or handle any reservations you may want to make. Above her desk was a scheduled sign for the café, their theatre, the doll hospital (yes, a doll hospital) and the doll hair salon. (yes, a doll hair salon) all reservation slots for the rest of the day are sold out. All I can think of is that somewhere in this nation is a real rich lady because no guy ever thought this up.

I get to the floor with the dolls, and start heading for the bitty baby section. The place was a literal madhouse of women and young girls, and every once in awhile you would see a father being drug with a leash around his neck. Trying to keep with my tight schedule, I do a 360 looking for where I need to go, and a clerk walks up to me and asks if this is my first time here. I guess I was looking obvious. She leads me to the section of the Bitty Baby – which ironically was anything but bitty.

I squeeze my way through the crowds and mounds of accessories to get to the dolls. There were several different types of Bitty babies, according to hair color and eye color and skin color seemingly at least ten different combinations. I laugh at this, because I get a great visual of my father coming to pick something out for a possible granddaughter someday, (the only reason he’d ever be caught within even a 5 mile radius of such a store) Not because he’s color blind, but because he’s just a guy (like any guy) who when faced with a lot of choices tends to break out in hives. If the time ever comes, I’ll have to make sure he has a personal shopper with him so he doesn’t have a stroke and have to be escorted to the doll hospital’s ER.

So, to match her, I grab the blonde haired, blue eyed baby, and being the girl I am, could not resist one accessory, the diaper bag complete with diapers – a onesie, wipes, powder, sippy cup and a “baby toy” The details crack me up and I look around for a minute longer before I realize I could spend a lot of time (and money) here and I better get a move on and get in line. To quote A Christmas Story -“The line for the cashier stretched to Terre Haute and I was at the end of it”. Thank God there were three cashiers who were so eager at doing their job that each and every purchase took no less than 15 minutes. Ok, I guess it wasn’t that bad, but, the Kronos clock was ticking for me like a dead man walking, I had to get out of there.

I finally get my purchase made, and after some mild sticker shock, I’m back on the trail again to work. Luckily, Lighting McQueen disguised as a cab driver pulled up just in time to give me my second bout of carsickness for the afternoon and in the blink of an eye I was back at my building. Punched in with a minute and a half to spare, I now decide to breathe, and it felt good.

Love, T


Today’s the Day!

June 2, 2007 | Family

Life is so good right now that I’m bursting with joy. Studs daughter is getting married this afternoon. She’s a wonderful woman and the groom is damned lucky to have her. Yeah, I’m biased. lol. I finally found a dress, actually a skirt, top and jacket in charcoal black. Not only does it fit but it even looks good. No butt cheeseburgers visiable. lol.

Today is also the one year anniversary for TEDDI TURNS ON. We’re having a On Year Anniversary Party for all the books over at the Triskelion Publishing loops with lots of prizes. If you get the time, pop over to FEVER or BOOKS and check it out.

And the last event that has me over the moon – LONNIE HEATS UP has been released. It’s $4.99 at Triskelion. Clcik on the link and you can read an excerpt.

Have a great day everyone. I’ll be back next week with an exciting interview for Gabrina Garza, a sassy author you won’t want to miss. Until then…

Happy Writing!


Decades are Deplorable

December 8, 2006 | Family

I awoke this morning to discover I am now a woman of a certain age. And I HATE it.

Am I sad? Yes.
Depressed? Don’t know and don’t want to waste the energy analyzing that possibility.
Do I wish I could turn back the clock? Definitely.
Do I resent not accomplishing enough by this point? Here’s where I choke and want to cry.
Do I want to slap the shit out of every person I run into today? Without a doubt.

These past two weeks have been a difficult time dealing with this horrendous milestone of my life. I’ve looked in the mirror and been surprised at the physical changes in me, not one of them for the better. But yesterday my tender-hearted daughter took me in hand and gave me a life’s lesson I soon won’t forget.

At their home my youngest granddaughter walked up to me with a bouquet and B handed me a card. Since the kids are sick and unable to attend school, I figured the flowers were my gift a day early and we wouldn’t get together on the day. But they weren’t.

The presents were only from B who wanted me to celebrate the last day of my then current decade. She advised me to relish all the good that had happened and reflect on the negatives with a promise to learn from them.

Her wisdom and kindness amaze me. I don’t know who B’s real mother is because I’m now convinced the hospital tossed her into the arms of a stranger. And I’m grateful they did.

I love you, B. Thank you for teaching this old dog a new trick.


Bragging Rights

July 10, 2006 | Family

This weekend was a great experience for me. My daughter, her two daughters, and I went on a mini vacation for the oldest girl’s dance convention. Hundreds of shrill voiced little girls met for three days to dance out their hearts.

The excellent instructors from the Chicago Dance Connection began classes at 8:00am and worked these kids until 3:30pm. Every type of dance technique was taught then performed. And every single exhausted girl loved it.

You can’t imagine the joy I experience being included in these important events of my children’s lives. I am one fortunate woman.

Have a great day!



May 31, 2006 | Family

Sloane Taylor here with some fantastic news. I am so proud of my beautiful daughter that I have to brag.

My little girl, my baby, got accepted to participate in the Montessori program and become certified as a Director for preschool kiddies. Is that cool or what?!?

An intense summer program begins in a few short weeks then in the fall “B” will be interning, and she already has a school that wants her permanently.

“B” is a brilliant woman who loves small children and has always excelled in school. Hmm, she sure would kill me if I told you her GPA was very impressive or that she was on the Dean’s List every semester, so I’d better not mention any of that.

Sometimes life hasn’t always been great. I could have lived without her teenage years and I know “B” could have lived without my menopause. But you see, here’s the really important thing; we overcame those small moments in time. Today we have a good relationship based on trust and love.

May you all share a wonderful experience with your children and celebrate their lives as I am today.


Comments are off


April 3, 2006 | Family

We had a wonderful week-end. The dance team performed better than ever and came away with two gold ribbons. It was totally awesome. Bob Fosse would have been proud, those little ladies danced their hearts out.

Aurora has some interesting sights including a casino I did not visit, didn’t seem right with the kiddies. Our Comfort Suites hotel room was large enough for all four of us to be, well, comfortable. The location was excellent because right next door was Walter Payton’s Roundhouse Complex, excellent food and service at reasonable prices.

But the best, the very best thing, was our girls won two gold ribbons. WooHoo!!

Sloane, the overly proud grandmama


Spring has Sprung

March 31, 2006 | Family

and to our family it means the round of dance competitions has arrived. My 8 year old granddaughter has a natural flair for dance, thank God, because the kid’s in at least six classes a week plus a dance team. It’s now time to hat up and head out on various weekends for cities beyond our horizon to watch the kids compete.

Today we’re off to Aurora, Illinois, which is not the entertainment capital of the world. Saturday morning the girls check-in by 7:30 a.m. By all that’s holy, there is no justice in this world and my daughter will not let me go in my bathrobe. Like Studly says, “It’s good to see you up at the crack of noon.” I still wonder why I love that guy.

Our girls compete twice, tap and hip-hop. They are very talented and have more spirit than most of the other teams. It sure would be great to see these little chicks get a top ribbon for all their hard work.

You all have a wonderful weekend and think of me as 500 little, giggly girls do their best to invade my private space.




March 27, 2006 | Family

Today is Studly’s oldest daughter’s birthday. Bean is a very young and happy thirty-something and shares her life with a great guy. They have this dynamite three year old son who is filled with energy and imagination. They are the perfect family.

Bean has an artistic talent inherited from her mom. They attend art classes together and therefore share a unique bond above being mother and daughter. If not both, at least Bean should be instructing young people on the benefits of drawing.

So a very Happy Birthday, Bean! You’re a terrific woman.