Bitchard Nixon wants you to watch Girls5Eva


Let me just preface this post with the disclaimer that I suck at writing reviews. I never know how to start them or how to write them in my own voice. So instead, consider what I am about to write to be an enthusiastic recommendation.

I did not like Girls5Eva, a Peacock original show, at first. Shandy had watched it on Matt’s recommendation and really enjoyed it. I knew the basic premise and that Tina Fey was involved, so I figured it was right up my alley. I took an extended break in between episodes 3 and 4 because I just wasn’t that into it. My (silly) hot take was that it was one of those female-heavy shows touted as “feminist” but with super-flawed female characters who ended up being the butt of their own jokes rather than being portrayed as strong, intelligent women.

I was so wrong!

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14 Years <3

14 years ago today, this dorky, adorable, wonderful dude asked me two days after our first date if we wanted to be official. I said yes and we’ve never looked back. 14 years, 3 homes, and 2 children later, and there’s no one else I’d rather spend my life with. I am a lucky gal.

Happy 14th, Smoopsys! I love you! Thanks for a wonderful life. 🙂 Cheers!

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GlatSquared Goes to Washington

Last weekend, in what now feels like months ago, #GlatSquared took an awesome trip to Washington, D.C. The plan was to leave around 10, get there for a 3 p.m. check-in at our hotel, hit up the National Mall, then go to dinner at 6 p.m. and play the rest of the evening by ear. Sunday, we had tickets to the Padres/Nationals game. That plan didn’t work out perfectly, but it worked out for the best.

We left a little later than intended and had to drop Zoe off at the vet. At this point, she was four days into her steroids treatment and had shown really hopeful improvement on Friday and Saturday morning. We wanted to make sure she ate and had someone give her the steroids while we were gone, so we decided to board her for the weekend. Our vet’s office was so busy that it took almost a half-hour to check her in. We didn’t get on the road until 11.

Then, there was the traffic. So. Much. Traffic. It took us 6 hours to make a 4.5-hour journey, with one stop for gas and a bathroom break. (There’s a really funny story from our drive that I have to tell on the next Broadcast episode. It’s best if this one doesn’t get put in writing. :P) We didn’t get to our hotel until 5 p.m., so we decided to eat first, at a restaurant called Founding Farmers.

So, funny story about our dinner plans: Back in May 2016, when I went to the Supreme Court for work (my only other time visiting D.C.), Jay and I walked from our hotel to the White House. Afterward, we went to a restaurant that we liked so much that we went back there again the following day with Zach and my parents for lunch. I was trying to remember what restaurant that was and thought it was called “Founding Fathers.” Google and Open Table returned “Founding Farmers” and the location/decor looked kinda similar-ish, so we went with it. When we got there, it was clear that that was not the right place, but we rolled with it anyway and it ended up being awesome. We’d totally go back.

Our traffic delay ended up working out for the best because we walked to the White House and then around the National Mall after dinner, out of the heat, and it was so much nicer than it would have been otherwise. It was my first time seeing anything other than the White House (and Congress/SCOTUS), so I was in awe of all of the historic buildings, statues, and memorials we saw. We went to the Treasury (the Hamilton statue was blocked off!), Washington Monument, WWII Memorial, and Lincoln Memorial. The boys enjoyed putting their feet in the water at the WWII Memorial and I couldn’t believe how cool everything was up close.

When we got back to our hotel, Jay suggested walking to the Nationals stadium, as it was literally across the street. Since it was the top of the 5th inning, we decided to see if they had any cheap tickets left and we’d stay until after the 7th-inning stretch. We got lucky and they sold us $8 student tickets in section 232. We were having a blast in the middle of the 6th and a man selling bourbon-spiked lemonade had just convinced me to give it a go. As he swiped our credit card, he said, “Oh, we’re going into a 2-hour weather delay.”

It didn’t look like it was raining or that rain was imminent but we were under an awning, so we thought maybe we just didn’t feel it. Then Jay went, “People are running off of the field.”

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Be A Good Kitty.

Zoe Helen Glatfelter passed away peacefully in her mommy’s arms on Wednesday, July 21, 2021 as her daddy rubbed her head in the way that she always loved being pet. She was born in July 2008 in her paternal family’s backyard to the cat that Jay & Jack listeners affectionately knew as “Mommy Kitty.” In May 2009, her daddy brought her home to his apartment, and a family of three was formed.

Princess Zoe

She was a great kitty.

Zoe was playful and patient. She let her mommy dress her up in silly costumes and only complained a little bit. She was smart; she knew she only had to pose for the picture. She was a really good sport. Zoe put up with a lot of costumes over the years and her mommy is so grateful for it. She was buried with her princess hat.

Whenever her mommy left the house, she’d call out, “Goodbye Zoe, be a good kitty!” She was always a good kitty.

Baby Alex chasing Zoe.

Over the years, her family grew into a family of five. She was so shook by her brother Zachary’s arrival that she refused to come out of her parents’ bedroom or acknowledge his existence for weeks. Soon, they were getting along while respecting each other’s boundaries. When her brother Alex arrived, it was a game-changer. Alex loved Zoe and would crawl around the house looking for her. Once, she hid underneath the Pack ‘n’ Play to get some peace and quiet. This past Christmas, she hid in the Christmas tree. But she loved Alex back and would purr as he loved all over her. She was weak but perked up a little bit when her brothers arrived to say goodbye to her. She loved them and they loved her.

Saying goodbye

Daddy & Zoe napping on Mommy.

Zoe loved being around people. She was a lap kitty and would jump right on up there, whether you were ready for her to do so or not. We called her our puppy cat because she acted more like a dog than your stereotypical cat sometimes. She loved playing with the laser pointer and Nerf gun bullets and sitting on the power box of a laptop charger. She never minded guests and would greet anyone who came into the house, hoping for a head or chin rub. A guard cat, she was not.

Comforting Mommy after hernia surgery.

Zoe provided comfort through some really terrible times. She showed affection by nuzzling her head against your body, which her mommy always thought was her version of giving kisses. Zoe loved it when her mommy did the same back to her. She would purr so loudly. Her mommy nuzzled her head in her final moments yesterday and hopes it gave her comfort.

 

Busted!

She loved sitting in boxes and suitcases. Whenever the suitcase came out, she knew what that meant. She didn’t like when her family left for more than a day and would meow loudly at them when they got home.

Zoe was mischievous. If you left a cup of water out on the table or counter, she would jump up and try to sneak a sip out of it. It will take a while to break the habit of covering or moving water glasses against the toaster oven (the only spot safe). When her family left town for more than a day, her mommy would fill giant water glasses for her and leave them around the house to make sure she drank.

Napping with Mommy & Zachy

Zoe was affectionally nicknamed Zobo Cat, and yes, she had her own theme song.

Zoe loved sitting on her cat tower in her parents’ bedroom and looking out the window. She loved sleeping curled up in the sun against the living room windows. She jumped up on the couch and curled up for pets and snuggles with her parents at nighttime. Her daddy would give her her favorite head rub and she would purr loudly. She would jump up on the bed and sleep snuggled against her mommy all night long. Her mommy would sometimes wake up with Zach, Alex, and Zoe sleeping on her, each vying for their own spot and she’d have to take a minute to figure out who was where and keep Zoe from getting squished.

Nuzzling Mommy

Although Zoe struggled to jump up on furniture over the past few weeks, she somehow managed to get onto the bed on Tuesday night and her mommy was surprised to find her curled up, snuggled against her on Wednesday morning. It brings her peace knowing she got one last sleep with Zoe and she is eternally grateful for that memory.

Zoe’s family loved her and she loved her family. She will be missed.

Goodbye, Zoe. Be a good kitty.

National Pet Day 2021

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Some Zoe News

I write this post with a bit of sadness. Our wonderful kitty, Zoe, has been having some health issues lately. Over the last month, she had started eating less and less, and when we were away in New York over the Fourth of July weekend, she stopped eating altogether. She looked terrible when we got back home. We took her to the vet; she was down to 7.5lbs. Zoe has always been a smaller cat, but never less than 9lbs, and she was clearly in distress.

After blood tests and ultrasounds, our vet has narrowed her condition down to either severe irritable bowel disease (IBD) or, more likely, GI lymphoma. She started steroids yesterday and if she responds well, she’ll hopefully have 1-3 years left.

My baby kitty girl. <3

This is a common disease for cats her age (13-years), so we are not going through anything unique. While trying to learn more information about Zoe’s diagnosis, I learned that my friend’s cat had to be put down from the same lymphoma less than 2 weeks ago. I had reached out to her to learn more about the diagnosis and she gave me that sad update along with the information that her kitty had lasted 1.5 years after diagnosis.

The bad? Zoe is so weak from not being able to eat that on Tuesday night, she tried to jump up onto the couch on two separate occasions and couldn’t do it. She fell both times and after the second time, she was limping around. I cried. The picture above is from after I picked her up and put her on the couch. She loves sitting on the couch next to us while we hang out or watch TV at night. After you pick her up, she’s so dizzy/nauseous/weak that you can’t put her back down on her feet; you have to lay her on her side or she’ll fall over. It’s so sad, and yup, I cried and worried a lot of the night.

The good? Zoe’s on a steroid treatment that a good friend who’s a vet (not Zoe’s) told me has been effective for cats that respond well to it. We gave her the first dosage last night and a second one this morning. My vet friend said it could take 24-48 hours to work, so fingers crossed that she takes well to it because as of this morning, she has barely eaten anything in the last 24-hours.

So that’s some of what’s going on right now. I’m worried about my Zobo Cat and preparing myself for the reality that Zoe may not be with us about 5-years earlier than I expected her not to be. I know that’s life, but it doesn’t make it any easier.

If anyone has had any experience with either disease in their cat, let me know, either good or bad. I’m an emotional person so being prepared with realistic expectations is good for me, haha. Thanks!

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The Broadcast Ep. 5.27 “Good-Lookin’ Brits Gettin’ It On”

Hello! See, I did two whole posts in between Broadcast posts, haha. On this week’s episode, we talk about Bridgerton, the final season of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and the dumbest WTF moments of Trump’s presidency. (Remember when he stared directly at the eclipse? Catered the McDonald’s feast? “Person. Woman. Man. Camera. TV.”? That crazy Boy Scouts speech from 2017 when he talked about drugs & sex parties on a yacht among other inappropriate things? It’s been a long 4 years.)

The player below will have the chapters marked out, but in case you’re listening through a podcast feed, here’s the breakdown of the timestamps. Everything is approximate because of ads:

  • 7:00 minutes: Start of political talk featuring Shandy’s pocket tyranny book
  • 19:39 (12:30 minutes later): Most laughable WTF moments of the Trump presidency
  • 26:04 (13 minutes later): End of all political talk
  • 29:00 (3 minutes later): The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (season 4)
  • 49:16 (20 minutes later): Bridgerton
  • 1:14:00 (25 minutes later): End of TV talk/Start of feedback

If you do want to check this episode out, you can listen to the latest episode below or via jayandjack.com, iTunes, Spreaker, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, etc. You may have better luck searching for us as “The Broadcast with Amanda, Shandy, and Colleen” since there are a few other shows called The Broadcast.

The book Shandy recommended, “On Tyranny” by Timothy Snyder:

As always, happy listening, and thanks for listening!

Listen to “Ep. 5.25 “Bloopers and Outtakes 5″” on Spreaker.

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Happy 1-21-21!

It’s Palindrome Week and we all know how much I love palindromes. 1-21-21 will be remembered (to me) as our first full day without Donald Trump as president. Breathe.

I loved all of the Bernie Sanders memes from yesterday but to me, this is the picture that said it all:

He. Is. Gone.

We still have a long way to go to deprogram half the country from the cruelty that was Trumpism, but may the man himself fade into obscurity without his platforms and bully pulpet. We can do that, America. Let’s do that.

P.S. Holy moly, Amanda Gorman #amirite?!

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Flying Southwest During the Pandemic

Since we’re all in this pandemic together, I wanted to share my experience flying on Southwest on flight 3598 from BWI to RDU on Sunday, January 3. My decision to fly was a last-minute decision, but I based it on a previously great flying experience that I had back in October. I flew on Delta and was really impressed by the safety measures they had taken; my flight was very spaced out and clean. I (mistakenly) thought that all airlines were still taking the pandemic seriously and following protocols. In addition to having had a good experience in the fall, Wake County offers free COVID testing and I had just had a negative one a few days earlier, so I also felt that I was not a safety risk to anyone else.

The day started out well. The flight out of Raleigh was a little more than half-filled. We socially distanced without issue during our layover. Our connecting flight to Long Island had like 37 people on it, which was awesome. We were able to sit like 10 rows away from everyone else and as such, I let the kids eat their snack when they offered cabin service. (The RDU/BWI flight did not offer cabin service.) We landed at 11 a.m. and I was turning around to fly back to Raleigh solo at 4:10 p.m. I expected the trip back home to be the same experience as my previous ones.

The flight home was when I realized that, of course, we had crossed back over into “profits over safety” territory (and yes, I get it; there are a lot of factors at play here, so don’t come at me). The first flight from ISP to BWI was my first indication that perhaps something was off. I went all the way to the back and sat by the window, hoping that I had another half-filled flight and wouldn’t have anyone else in my row again. There was someone in the aisle seat but I also came close to having someone sit in the middle seat. I noted that there were only a handful of people who needed the middle seats, so I dismissed it as maybe they were last-minute purchases or the flight attendants let someone traveling with a lap infant take up a seat and that threw off the count or something explainable like that.

NOPE.

Flight 3598 from BWI to RDU was completely full, middle seats and all. Southwest booked a completely full flight during a fucking pandemic. To make matters more stressful, once we boarded, we sat at the gate for another 45 minutes while they repaired something to do with the air conditioning. It was so warm on the plane that once the captain gave us an update, he said something along the lines of, “Whew, it’s hot in here! Let’s get that A/C going!” On top of all of that, they still did cabin service, which means people seated 6 inches apart would be taking their masks off to eat or drink on a packed plane that had limited airflow for 45 minutes. (Thankfully, the two other women in my row also declined cabin service.) As soon as I got home, I took my clothes off in the garage and put them straight into the laundry, and washed them on a hot water, heavily soiled cycle.

I waited two weeks before talking about this because I wanted to have two negative post-flight COVID tests, which I thankfully now have. I just thought I’d pass along my experience for anyone out there who was considering (or has to) flying right now. Southwest’s website touts physically-distanced practices, but as of Jan. 17, that only applies to boarding, not the actual flight itself. I never noticed that the language about not booking middle seats had disappeared. You’re not “physically-distanced” if you’re sitting 6 inches from the person next to you. I feel really lucky that after 14 days, I’ve tested negative but I don’t think I will be flying again anytime soon. Just another lesson not to assume and a reminder to do your due diligence. Good luck and stay safe and healthy!

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The Broadcast Ep. 5.25 “Bloopers and Outtakes 5”

I promise I won’t cheat by only posting Broadcast stuff on here, but I did want to share that the bloopers & outtakes from the first half of Season 5 are out on The Broadcast’s feed. I changed up the usual format of how I do them this year and added one section that I really enjoy, haha.  My next post won’t be podcast-related, I promise!

If you do want to check this episode out, you can listen to the latest episode below or via jayandjack.com, iTunes, Spreaker, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, etc. You may have better luck searching for us as “The Broadcast with Amanda, Shandy, and Colleen” since there are a few other shows called The Broadcast.

As always, happy listening, and thanks for listening!

Listen to “Ep. 5.25 “Bloopers and Outtakes 5″” on Spreaker.

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Happy 1-2-21!

Helloooo! I’m here! I’m glad that you are too! Happy New Year!

I know it’s been a while, but I have been wanting to get back to blogging more frequently. I wish I could say that I have been doing great big things that have kept me busy, but truth be told, I’ve had other outlets (The Broadcast, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) to share things on and anything else, I no longer felt like I had any authority on or interesting/exciting way to say it. Plus, kids, work, life, and the amount of time/effort that goes into editing The Broadcast each week had me worn out and feeling otherwise stretched thin. (Don’t worry, I’ve had other hobbies; I started Geocaching in April 2019 and have gotten really into solving puzzles to find coordinates, I go for 5+-mile walks/hikes to relax, and I still try to be crafty.)

Over the last year or so, I’ve stopped checking Facebook as much and I’m rarely on Instagram nowadays. I was spending an unhealthy amount of time on Political Twitter and it was making me angry, so I’ve been taking a little break from that too. Thanks to the pandemic, we haven’t done a whole lot to have many personal stories to share on The Broadcast and honestly, I think the show is much better off (and easier to edit) without my stupid rambling and taking too long to get to the point. There’s also an element of the older I get and the older my kids get, I realize that I don’t always have to say what I’m thinking or share every little detail about everything.

Anyways, I’d like to try to get back into blogging in 2021. I have some of those writing prompt challenge books that I’ve acquired over the years in an attempt to get back on the horse and I’ve been jotting down ideas here and there. I can’t promise I’ll blog as frequently as I used to, but I am going to try to hold myself accountable to blog more this year. Even if no one reads them, I’ll have things for myself to look back on, like I sometimes do with recipes I’ve posted in years past or even to remember a story or event I shared, haha.

Zachary (Zachy) and Alex (Lexi) are getting so big now. Zachary is six and in first grade. Alex is going to be three next month, although you’d think he was going to be 15. They may look a lot alike, they’ve got very different personalities. Zachy is really creative, smart, and caring and loves to build things. Lexi is goofy, tough, and clever and loves to play with action figures and toys. They’re both such loving little boys. I’m so proud of them. I love them so much and I love watching their relationship with each other grow.

On that note, it’s late and I have to get up early tomorrow for a long day. I will leave you for now with a picture taken in late November.

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