Thursday, December 23, 2010

Chapter 14: Where's the Ring....?

I used to have a blog for approximately 3 days called "Where's the Ring?" I wrote about a few blind dates and then lost interest. The caption under the heading read:
Whether it's family members asking me at someone else's wedding or I'm asking it of myself, this seems to be the question of the hour for a single 27 y/o woman. Why aren't you married yet?
Between then and now a lot of people have asked me why I'm not married or when am I getting married or "Isn't it time for you to get married and have some babies?" I'm not 27 anymore. I'll be 30 in less than 6 months. I'll also be married in less than 6 months. Um, yah.


More on that lovely story later. It's Christmas Eve-Eve and I'm off to work for a half day and then home to pack up to head to the family for Christmas. I don't even really need the Christmas shenanigans this year to be cheerful. I am blissfully happy :) And, yet, I STILL get Christmas presents on top of it all!!!! Merry Christmas to me!!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Chapter 13: An apple a day

Last week I got a half a bushel of apples on clearance for $10 and decided it was time to make some apple butter. YUM. I found out recently that you just make it in your crock pot! Easy as apple pie. You DO have to make the apple sauce first, but that's no problem. Unless, of course, you don't have a food mill. I just assumed I'd be able to pick one up at our local wholesale kitchen store on Saturday morning. Not so much. They only had little tiny ones or big giant electric, restaurant style $300 versions. I can order one for fairly cheap online but the apples needed to be used now. I finally resigned myself to pealing a half a bushel of apples because you CAN make apple sauce without a food mill if you peal them first since the purpose of the mill is to separate the fruit from the skin. You just have to put them in the food processor or blender after they've softened up on the stove. I was saved only 4 apples in by a friend who had her grandmother's old Foley Food Mill and offered to let me borrow it. The old ones your grandma had work so much better than anything new, I swear. And I REALLY didn't want to peal 1/2 a bushel of apples.

So I have a crock pot full of apple sauce in the fridge waiting to start cooking tomorrow and turn into delicious apple butter. My house is going to smell DELICIOUS tomorrow! Then I'll can them and have lovely jars up on the shelf next to the strawberry jam I canned in the spring. Like Laura Ingalls Wilder. Cause I'm a pioneer girl.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Chapter 12: EUREKA!

Eureka Springs, that is.

Daniel and I have been saying for over a year that we wanted to make it up to Eureka Springs to poke around but just never got around to it. There was an Ozark Folk Festival this weekend and it was a pretty day so we headed up this afternoon for a quick visit.

Road Trip!!

The Hill Benders--Love that Bluegrass!

We wandered through the shops and when we came back by there was a drum circle! It was actually pretty cool. I might have to go to one in town one of these days

Everyone always says, "If you go to Eureka, you have to go to Geraldi's." So we did. It was pretty tasty. I would recommend it if you're in the area and wanting some pizza. Of course, they were closing up shop at 7pm like every place else, so you better get there early.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Chapter 11: The Opposite of a Jonah Day


I won this in an Ebay auction today.  First Edition, 39th Impression Anne of Green Gables.  I could sing for joy.  I had resigned myself to never being able to own an early edition Anne of Green Gables.  They usually go for several hundred dollars.  I paid $36.55.  My heart might explode with excitement when it comes in the mail.  Anne calls very bad days in which nothing seems to go right “Jonah Days."  Today was not that kind of day.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Chapter 10: Brings A Whole New Meaning to "Hotter than a whore in church"

For several weeks our pastor Robb has mentioned every Sunday that maybe it would be cool if everyone dressed like Bible characters or just anyone from church history on Halloween. At first it was "Wouldn't it be LAME if we did that?" And then "Wouldn't it be FUNNY if we did that?" And it finally ended up the week before Halloween with "OK, I can pretty much guarantee you a few extra jewels in your crown up in Heaven if you dress up next Sunday." Which is basically a dare. And I'm defenseless against a good dare.

So Daniel and I hemmed and hawed at the last minute trying to think up some funny costumes.

Daniel suggested I be a double rainbow, all the way.

Cause a rainbow is a Bible character.

But I didn't have anything to make a rainbow costume. Instead Daniel used an old tunic costume he had and I used a big pretty piece of fabric from Thailand, some Mardi Gras beads and the walking stick I bought for Daniel at my family reunion year before last and a pillow for a fake baby belly.

You see, we've been moving through Genesis this year in church. A few months ago we came to the the story of Judah and Tamar. Quick recap--Tamar marries Judah's son and he is struck down by God. So she marries her brother-in-law. He doesn't want to father a child with her like he's supposed to because it would be considered his dead brother's kid. When he is remiss in his duties, God also strikes him down. Judah sends Tamar away and promises she can marry the other brother when he grows up. But he breaks his promise. And Tamar pretends to be a prostitute and Judah helps her get into a family way when Judah comes to town. She hangs on to his staff (family reunion walking stick) and cord (Mardi Gras beads) to prove who her Baby Daddy is when she gets a big belly and everyone in town wants to do away with her what with her no-husband-having, person-growing situation. But she busts out Judah's belongings and he's all "Oh yah, my bad." The end.

Nice story, lots of lessons to be learned. By grown ups. In the sermon. For my part, it's my responsibility to write the Kids Church lesson plans. Riiiiiiiight. So Robb attempted to tell me right before this lesson came up how important it was for me to be planning my lessons on EXACTLY what we were studying in church each week. But he couldn't even keep a straight face through the first sentence. And the kids sang Father Abraham and glued macaroni to construction paper. Not really. I don't actually have them do macaroni crafts but I think maybe I should now that I mention it. hmmm

Anyway. In closing, the scenario Sunday morning went like this.

We were totally late for church and walked in the door in our super costumes just as Robb was saying that he really thought more people would come dressed up but no one did. Except for my friend Wendy who dressed up as Michelle Duggar and I didn't even get to see her. Boo. Enter us:

And cue the laughter. Someone asked if we were Mary and Joseph and, instead of answering, I glared around, shook my stick and beads, pointed to my belly and glared at Daniel. After a beat Robb yelled out "You're Judah and Tamar?!?!?" It was awesome.

And then all my Sunday school kids thought I was actually pregnant and kept asking me if I was having a boy baby or a girl baby. Less awesome.

But we ended the morning with my new favorite quote of all time coming from Robb.

"Nobody dresses up like a fake prostitute like you, Erin."

It's true.

Nobody does.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Chapter 9: Thou shalt not defame the name of Dorothy Gale

I haven't posted in over a month, bad blogger, how very indicative of my lack of follow through and an ironic example of the whole reason I started this blog yada yada yada. Ok, now that that's out of the way let's continue like it never happened. Also sort of an ironic example of my character flaws. Moving right along.

This month is apparently National Blog Posting Month or NaBloPoMo aka "The theme with the most awkward and sort of dirty sounding acronym ever" month. Even though the name is a little bit lame and I'm 3 days late starting I'm going to attempt to take part. I haven't actually read anything about it yet other than I'm supposed to make a commitment to post every day of the month of November. That might be a little bit difficult logistically speaking during Fake Thanksgiving and Actual Thanksgiving but I'll figure something out.

I don't really have a reason for not blogging, I just haven't sat down to do it. Every time I've had some free time I've been obsessively playing New Super Mario Bros on the Wii. But this last weekend was Halloween and I resolved to write a little something about the kick-off to the Holiday Season. Mostly because of something disturbing Daniel and I encountered at his DJ cousin's big annual Halloween Bash.

OK, I'm accustomed to the concept of a majority of girls' Halloween costumes being "Slutty _____". Especially college girls. I usually prefer to think up something witty or culturally relevant so I wish I could say I've never partaken in this (newish?) tradition. Sadly I cannot honestly make that assertion. I had some friends in college who I'm still quite close to today who threw epic parties. EPIC. One year for the Halloween party we all had a meeting and wrote costume ideas on little pieces of paper and put them in a bowl. My suggestion was "Bertha the Bald-Headed Ballerina" but, sadly, no one pulled that one from the bowl since we all made multiple suggestions. I drew "naughty nurse." Very inspired. But I am a slave to the rules of the game when it comes to theme parties so I scoured the earth and located an actual vintage nurse's uniform. I hemmed the HECK out of it so that it was so short if I bent over slightly you'd see the bright red boy shorts I purchased for the occasion and borrowed a lacy red push-up bra from a friend. I felt very daring. But that pales in comparison to the travesty I witnessed last Friday night.

Daniel and I were hanging out at the club checking out everyone's costumes when a "Dorothy" started walking our direction. She wore a little white top with poofy cap sleeves that was just big enough to cover her girls. I leaned over and yelled in Daniel's ear over the music "I've seen lingerie bigger than that!" And then she passed us by and my eyeballs almost caught fire. The following is what I saw:


That is not a costume. Those are SEQUINED UNDIES! Which, BTW, just makes me itchy to even think about. I'm not totally sure what the little bowed bands are supposed to be, garters I think. Home girl doesn't even know those are supposed to be holding up stockings. Or maybe it's supposed to be worn that way. Who knows? I'm sure not Googling it.

I guess I can't judge too much. I did, after all grab my boyfriends arm and scream "You have GOT to take a picture of her @$$!!!!" I was self-aware enough to realize immediately what a weird thing that is to ask of your boyfriend but I couldn't help myself. My mind was blown. So many questions.
Does she KNOW that it's almost November and COLD outside? And yet she chose to leave the house in pretty much nothing but panties? What, exactly, was she hoping to accomplish by dressing this way? I don't think I'm a prude. I have no problem with the human body. It's a beautiful thing. I don't necessarily think poorly of women who dress provocatively in public. I do wonder WHY? I just can't relate. Maybe if I were as fit as this young woman I'd feel differently but I don't think so. Still, I do have one major problem with this concept.

You probably think, from the direction this seems to be going, that I'm about to launch into a tirade either about modesty or about the right of a woman to walk down the street buck neckid and not have it be sexualized because women aren't just sexual creatures created for the enjoyment of men everywhere. But that's not where this is going.

Some things are just too sacred to mess with for me.

I don't take the Lord's name in vain.
I do not tolerate vegetables or fungus on my pizza.
Don't touch me with your feet.
Under ANY circumstances.
In any way, shape or form.
And I mean EVER.

Disrespect anything that is involved with, pertains to or represents The Wizard of Oz.

Dorothy Gale is a sweet little innocent farm girl.
She should not be part of your disgusting little perv fantasy.

If I had been a little bit tipsy I might very well have waltzed up to her half-naked self and given her a lecture on how to pay proper respect to the classic works of Mr. L. Frank Baum and the iconic image of the radiant Judy Garland.

Instead I was just too distracted trying not scratch my behind just thinking about sequined undies.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chapter 8: Don't steal food from an overworked dieting woman

Happy fun things and things and crummy ones.

I got to visit my sister and her kids, my grandma and my brother and some of his kids last weekend. It was really nice. Driving around my college town in the cooling weather made me nostalgic. I hadn't been on a road trip by myself in a long time. Heck, I haven't BEEN by myself for more than a few hours in ages. I'm very busy and important. AKA over scheduled. So it was nice to just be alone in my thoughts for a few hours at a time.

My sister and I got to talking about how we've both gained some weight in the last few months and have been having trouble staying motivated to lose it. We've both done well on Weight Watchers in the past (she went to meetings but I never did) but it hasn't been doing the trick lately because we just can't seem to stay motivated. . We talked about a few other tactics we've heard of but nothing seemed to fit. So the next morning my sister gets up and around and looks at me across the kitchen with a glint in her eye. She had an idea. A brilliant idea. Last year we started a tradition in our family for some of the girls to go Christmas shopping together in Branson and we're going to go the first week in December this year. So my sister and I are having our own version of the Biggest Loser.

  1. We both have to lose at least 10lbs by the shopping trip or the competition is void.
  2. Whoever loses the most between now and when we go shopping gets her portion of the hotel room paid for by the other sister
Voila! We're both going to join Weight Watchers and go to the meetings and we are going to rock this joint! My personal goal is to lose between 12 and 17lbs. We started on Monday so that gives us almost 11 weeks. At the very minimum, if I lose a pound a week plus a few ounces I'll make my goal. I think 1.5-2lbs a week is a healthy amount for sustaining weight loss so I'm pretty confident that it's doable! And then we're going to be some smokin' hot sisters come Christmas-time!

So I've been counting my points this week and doing pretty well. Which brings me to the crummy item on today's list.

I really like Red Delicious apples. They are just so crisp and juicy. I like to put them in the fridge. Cold is best when it comes to apples in my book. Not so with oranges. Oranges should be room temperature. And I put salt on them. But I didn't buy an orange yesterday. I bought an apple. A nice, dark, red one. And put it in the crisper of the fridge at work next to the rest of my food: my lunch, my bag of bagels and cream cheese for breakfast. I was thinking about that apple all day yesterday but had a meeting in another town in the afternoon so I didn't get to have it as my snack. After grocery shopping last night I was hungry and seriously wishing I had just brought it home. I definitely should have.

Because something terrible happened.

I thought about the apple all day today too. Just waiting and waiting for my afternoon tummy grumble that meant it was snack time. I spend a VERY long time working on some stuff with one of my bosses and FINALLY we finished and off I went to get my apple to de-stress from my crazy to-do list.

But it wasn't in the fridge.

I walked back to my desk and stood there sort of lost and confused. Then I went back to the fridge to look again. I moved things around. I picked up jugs of milk because apples are so magical they could hide underneath a jug of milk, right? But no. My apple was gone.

Somebody ate my apple. Somebody STOLE my apple.

HOW does a person do that? What on earth makes someone feel so entitled that they think they can just take whatever they want, whenever they want it just because they feel like it? I am utterly shocked and appalled.

So I, of course, sent an email to the entire office explaining how I was very sad because I had been dreaming about my rosy red delicious apple all day and, alas, it was nowhere to be found. But maybe it just went on a little trip and would be back in its drawer in the morning. Except it might have sounded slightly less passive aggressive. Or it might not have. I was royally ticked off. I hit send and moments later hear laughing all over the office. I then get a handful of responses telling me how I am oh-so "Fun" and "Hilarious."

I am not fun or hilarious. I am a hungry dieting woman who was looking forward to a 1 point snack. And some Skank stole it from me. Also, I'm cheap. I budget my month down to a ZERO every month just like Dave Ramsey taught me (I try to/mean to anyway). There is not a penny that I don't have specific plans for. They might as well have opened up my purse and pulled a couple of bucks out of my wallet. Since when is it OK to act like little children who don't know any better in the workplace?!?! *Expletive of Frustration*

What I really want to do right now is take a nice hot bubble bath and read a comfort book. You know, the ones I've read over and over. Except I can't. Because I made a pledge (sort of). And I can't self medicate with Laura Ingalls Wilder. And all the books I have lined up at home ready to read are serious ones. Somehow I don't think any of these would lift my spirits.

Hmmm...first real bump in the whole "only new books for 6 months" thing. It's like trying to resist chocolate cake.


Now I want chocolate cake too.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Chapter 7: In which a computer error at Lowe's makes my day

I usually don't buy plants at full price. I wait for the people at Lowe's or Home Depot or wherever to pretty much kill them and then put them on the "Almost Dead" rack. Then I pay 25cents for them and either nurse them back to health or I finish the job and they end up in my compost heap.

Yesterday was the first time in ages that I'd been to Lowe's because a) I would definitely kill anything new that I planted in this heat just as I killed 99% of the plants already on my deck in the past few weeks and b) I just really didn't need to be spending money on more plants. I have a birthday party to prepare for, people! But because of said birthday party it really IS time to fix the running toilet.

A plumber friend at church offered months ago to fix it if I'd just go buy a "Tank to Bowl Kit." OK. I can do that. If there is something called a kit and all I have to do is ask for it at Lowe's I'm golden. I was even more excited to realize that such a kit is less than $5! The teenage boy in the plumbing section even said it was a one-size situation. Even better! But I'm cautious (ok, paranoid) about that kind of thing so I asked him "Are you SURE this will fit any size toilet?" and he returned from asking another employee with the answer "Probably, but maybe not." Instead of buying both sizes and returning the one that doesn't fit, I decided I'd let my plumber friend come look at my toilet and tell me which to get. At which time I will go get the correct size while he takes apart my ancient toilet. Problem solved; now it's time to go look at the crispy plants!

So while I was checking out a very meager selection, Daniel was noticing that a particular section of plants was swarming with butterflies and bees while none of the other plants were getting much attention. Since he was getting really excited about the butterfly bushes and we had a disappointing showing around the garden this summer when it came to the precious little pollinators I suggested we get one. The big sizes were marked to $16.95 or something like that but the smaller ones didn't have a price anywhere. So another high school boy/Lowe's employee came along to get us a price check.

And it rang up as $1.91.
"Did you say $11.91," I asked skeptically.
"Nope," says another high school boy. "They're $1.91."
"DANIEL! Get 3 more!"

Four plants for less than what one of them probably should have cost! That is the kind of thing that makes me just giddy.

Because I might have someone out to grind up a stump right where they'll be going they aren't planted yet but here they are patiently awaiting their new home.So pretty!

My photography skills leave a little to be desired and they're pretty small not but THIS is what they WILL look like.
And they have a really fast growth-rate. We were at some friends' house for a party last night and coincidentally they had a butterfly bush in their yard that they bought last year. When they planted it it was a foot tall. now it's about 6 feet.

I also finally remembered to go to the park and pick up a few horse apples for decoration. I have meant to do that every year for 3 years and I finally remembered!

Saturday was a pretty dandy day!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Chapter 6: Something will get done eventually, right?

So the flashback to my tender years was brought on by me trying to decide whether or not it was ironic that the reason I hadn’t posted in two weeks on my blog (you know, the one about having too much on my plate & putting that plate aside for more plates?) was because I’ve been busy with hobbies and traveling and being lazy.  I put my shelves together and rearranged the sunroom into something of a sewing room/library but left the shelf boxes propped up against a wall so, of course, I never took a picture to share.  And I went to dance class twice a week getting ready to dance with a local men’s choir this weekend but I never did go buy the shirt I’m supposed to get or the right pants so I’ll have to get both tomorrow.  And I never did write about how I got into dance class because I took some video in class to include and I need to edit the clips to make sure you only see feet and not the ladies in my class, cause that would be seriously rude. 

Then I went to Memphis with Daniel for Labor Day to visit his family and do Memphis things.  Also we’re down a few people at work in my position so I’m doing lots of filling in so my brain is spinning by supporting 4 client groups instead of 2.  But I’m making lots of progress on the afghan I’ve been working on so basically when I get home I want to eat dinner, watch a movie and knit.  Or write lists.  About Daniel’s Birthday.  And the things I need to do to get ready for it. Which are a lot of things.  Including fixing the toilet because I can’t have dozens of people at my house and have them turn off the water to the toilet after they’re done because it runs constantly if you don’t.  And has pretty much all of 2010.  Yah. 

But tonight I was productive!  There was much secret planning and arranging and MAYBE some doing tonight.  But that is all I can say.  Because I love surprises and I don’t want to spoil any of Daniel’s.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Chapter 5:Alanis Morissette doesn't know what irony means

Ahhh, how my friends and I loved Jagged Little Pill when we were in, what, 8th grade? 9th grade? I could look it up but it doesn't really matter. Suffice it to say that we were old enough to start having some drama in our lives and young enough to think it was REAL drama. Thus the joy in listening to post "You Can't do that on Television" Alanis as a method to either work through our own "pain" or work ourselves up into manufacturing something to feel angsty over if we didn't have any angst to speak of.

But even then, in the midst of feeling awkward and not cool enough and wondering "oh for the love of all that is good and holy was I ever going to grow boobs?" (answer: no) I was still an, if not unabashed, slightly nerd and knew the definition of the word irony. Sure, I sang in a really off-pitch adolescent voice about finding black flies in my chardonnay even though I didn't REALLY know what chardonnay was other than some kind of wine. I bemoaned the trials of rain on your wedding day. I pretended I was one of the different Alani in the car on the way to the mall. Somehow I always got stuck being the spazzy hair-eater. All the while I had a dirty little secret. That damn song ate at my very being. I thought I would burst with know-it-all-ness every time it came on the radio. Finally, one day I snapped and yelled out "I hate this stupid song those things aren't even ironic!" Only to be met with blank stares and "Of course they are. It's on MTV." Or something equally brainy and well-thought-out. So I'd sing along because, honestly, it's really catchy. But eventually I'd have to pipe in my 2 cents. Sometimes someone would laugh when they realized the truth. A few people joined me in deconstructing exactly WHY each line was not ironic and we felt so stinking intelligent and just above it all. If there had been a coffee shop in our small town we totally would have hung out there being cool. But usually, in the true essence of teenagerdom, people just said "Who cares? This song is amazing. It's, like, so totally exactly what I'm feeling right now, you know? I mean, gaaaaaah." And I would cozy in a little further into my assigned role as the friend who didn't really mind being the spazzy hair-eater Alanis on rides to the mall and who was "smart" because I knew what irony was.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Chapter 4: I’m a terrible blogger

Simply terrible.  This blog was supposed to help me be all introspective and improve my life.  Oh, I’m sure it will.  If I can ever find the time to actually write it.  The biggest piece of that being the need to think of something interesting to write about.  But it’s just so dang hot.  And I am just so dang lazy.  I just want to sit and read.  “So what’s the problem?!” you ask, “Isn’t that sort of the point of the blog?  To read about things so that you can write about them?”  Except I’m just so easily distracted.  And it’s hard for me to read a book like Blue Like Jazz if I don’t have time to really think about what I’m reading.  Take notes even.  I read the first chapter and it sort of kicked me in the teeth and took me right back to an incident involving my 10 year-old self and the sudden realization that my parents were….PEOPLE.  Like actual people.  With actual feelings. 

So I realized, “Whoa, this book is serious,” and every time I have had time to read I felt like I wasn’t able to concentrate like I wanted to.  So during those times I picked up an easy read.  I stuck to the rule.  I’ve never read this one before.  But who could resist a $0.50 Steven King on a Saturday afternoon thrift store trip after Farmer’s Market?  Not me, that’s for dang sure!  So I’ve been reading that book for the past little bit.  When I get home from work and my brain just doesn’t want to concentrate and I just want to sit on my couch and escape I’ve been reading a book in which an important character is an alien “@$$-weasel.”  (totally not my word, but it’s kind of catchy) For real.  I hate you, Steven King. 


 Postscript to Steven King: If you happen to Google yourself and read this, I don’t really hate you.  I think you’re super and I’ve read The Stand 3 or 4 times.  It’s just that now I think anything odd I see is alien byrus moss.  And I don’t particularly care for having the image of an alien crawling out of some guy’s behind etched in my brain.  But you’re still cool.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chapter 3: Making Progress

One of the dog-eared areas in my life is my house.  Not all of it.  Just bits.  I bought my adorable little yellow house in May of ‘07 and jumped right into painting and arranging some rooms before I even moved in.  But then there are the sad, neglected spots like the back room.  Sometimes I call it the den because there is a step down into it (it used to bet he carport I think).  A lot of the time I call it the sun room because there are 3 big windows lining one wall.  But I’ve never really DONE anything to it.  For about a minute I set up a little couch and chair and coffee table and it was a sort of reading nook.  But then my cat basically declared war on the couch.  She hangs out in the back room and laundry room during the day so she’s not breaking things around the rest of the house and trying to make soup on the gas stove and setting the whole house on fire.  Also I don’t want to come home to find my pillow covered with 6 inches of Tonks fur.  I’m picky like that.

So eventually I had a furry room with a couch that looked like it picked a fight with my paper shredder and lost.  Of course it then became the catch-all room.  So it was basically just a wannabe Hoarders episode without the decaying organic matter.  I attempted a revamp on several occasions but it always fell right back into disarray.  And the nice positive of the room—all that sun—bleached my lovely curtains to, well, I don’t even know what. And this is what it looks like today.

  • Poster on the wall from Bikes, Blues & BBQ 2008 including tiny posting stating “You are Here” so my family wouldn’t get lost
  • Papasan chair with no cushion because it either needs to leave my house or get more stuffing for the cushion which has done a pretty respectable job of trying to become as flat as possible in the last 10+ years
  • Pile of various work in the yard shoes/hiking boots
  • Canning supplies because I have the tiny kitchen from HELL and can’t figure out where to put my boiling water canner and beautiful mason jars :(
  • Lovely Faded Curtains
  • Insane cat
  • Books, books, and some more books
  • Bags and bags of yarn and fabric

The last few are what have really inspired me lately to get in gear and do something with the room.  Last month my mom fixed my sewing machine that wasn’t really broken I just thought it was for the past year or so.  I still think it was broken, it just took one look at her coming it’s way and said “WHOA….this is serious.  It’s a professional so I better straighten up and fly right!”  I know it always worked on me as a kid.

Sewing is another one of my dogeared pages.  I sewed anything I could get my hands on as a little girl.  My mom used to give us a needle and thread and sheet of paper to sew pictures at the kitchen table.  Come to think of it, that might be a good idea for the kids in Sunday school.  I better add that to my list.  But I digress.  When I was 7 or 8 (correct me if I’m wrong, Mom.  But I think it was the same Christmas I got my Little House Books) I got a kid’s working toy sewing machine for Christmas.  Shortly after that my parents decided they should have just bought me a used real one at a yard sale and I moved up to being allowed to use my mom’s.  I really did keep at it for a while off and on.  I have made two attempts in my life to make clothes.  Once in the 6th grade my final sewing class project was an outfit that I never did finish for some reason or another.  And in 9th grade I decided to make a skirt out of ties that attached to the tops of an old pair of overalls.  But we moved Southeast Asia before I was able to get enough ties together to finish it, even as tiny as I was back then. haha 

The sewing machine I have now was given to my by my grandma.  I borrowed in sophomore year of college and she never used it so she let me keep it.  At that point I was hemming pants and doing basic repairs or making Halloween costumes for my hall mates.  Looking back on it I should have put up posters and charged people. *sigh* another missed opportunity to build my evil empire.  Then I moved on to attempting to make a quilt.  I have a very nearly finished Drunkard’s Path quilt top folded up in the bottom of a stack of fabric.  Dogeared. 

So this is where I sort of kill two birds with one stone.

  1. Pick one of the hobbies I have rudely cast aside and either develop it or get rid of it for good. (I’m about to become a sewing machine.  Hmm…that’s not exactly how I wanted that to work)
  2. Pick any area of my house that I have neglected and stop treating said area like a college kid in a sleazy rental property.

The clincher that REALLY motivated me was This Lady's Blog.  She redid her studio and it ended up looking like this:

image  image

And I broke a Commandment.  Remember the one about Coveting?  Yah.  I covet the fact that this neat lady has an Ikea so close to her.  Because those fantasmical shelves would cost more to ship than they do to buy.  Lucky me, it’s back to school time and places like Office Depot, while they may have some real numskulls working for them (I’ll have to tell that story another time) do things like put these shelves on sale!


Mmmmm…Pretty.  So I bought two and hauled both the boxes home in my Saturn. ( I TOLD you they would fit annoying Office Depot guy who doubted me).  I had to go grocery shopping tonight so I didn’t have time to start putting them together but tomorrow night will be my night!  I am going to pop in Season 1 of Grey’s Anatomy and get started creating a beautiful space for creating works of sewing art!  And also knitting.  Aren’t those shelves going to look beautiful full of colorful yarn and books?  Woohoo!  It’s no Posy Gets Cozy and it’s definitely not quite Vanessa levels of cool just yet but it’s a start!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Chapter 2: Did somebody throw a bucket of soapy water on me? Because I’m melting.

You know it’s been hot when you comment about it not being so bad out because it’s cooler than the day before.  And it’s still 100 degrees.

Because I am a crazy person I got up and went yard-saleing this morning and ended up with a couple of dandy items.  Last night over pizza and Dogma I asked Daniel if he wanted to get up early and go with me.  He just stared at me.  I think he was waiting for the punch line.  Because he was SLEEPY and planned on sleeping as long as humanly possible on Saturday morning.  Both of us probably got about 4 or 5 non-consecutive hours of sleep Thursday night due to our exciting meteor shower adventures.  We actually DID make it out at 3am to watch!  I was impressed with us.  It was quite an adventure.  We just hopped in the car and drove East looking for a field or open spot to pull into away from the city lights.  We finally ended up in the driveway to a field with just enough space between the gate and the road for the car.  I spread a blanket on the hood of the car and leaned back to enjoy.

Then Daniel heard a noise and saw a flash of white in the field about 3 feet in front of the car.  I saw a flash of black.  (Does black actually *flash*?) I’ll give you a moment to imagine we might be seeing lumbering through the weeds.

Daniel started flashing his phone in the direction of the disturbance trying to catch a glimpse of what he thought was a cute little bunny.  I on the other hand was grasping at every ounce of willpower I could muster to NOT scurry up onto the tippity top of the car. Because bunnies don’t  lumber.  You know what’s black and white and lumbers?  Stumped?  Here is a little hint….


When I was pretty sure I could concentrate on anything other than being totally, completely still, I begged Daniel to stop flashing his phone at the dangerous little critter and to please.stop.talking.  I just knew I was going to have to have to call in “Stanky” the next day.  I don’t actually get any personal or vacation days until October when I’ve been there 6 months but I’m pretty sure I could have gotten a free pass on that one.

Thankfully, Pepe Le Pew kept going on his/her merry jaunt through the pasture and I was able to go to work the next morning.  Sleep-deprived but not in need of a tomato bath.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Chapter 1: In which I get off to a very slow start

I finished up The Fiery Cross two days ago and still haven’t cracked open Blue Like Jazz.  But I have carried it around with me in case I find some free time to start reading on my lunch break or something.  Except I keep either working through my lunch break or I’m busy trying to write a Sunday School lesson plan for this weekend.  (I SWEAR I’ll get it done tomorrow, Grace!) 

The problem is that my normally very uneventful life got very eventful at the last minute this week!  Yesterday a friend needed a girly night out so her husband set us up on a chick-date.  Nice husband!  So I picked her up after work and we had a delicious dinner and some drinks and lots of laughs.  Thanks, Ness for not judging me for bringing up the Duggars about 15 times throughout the night.  They’re like Kevin Bacon!  They relate to EVERYTHING!  And I’m only a little bit ashamed.

I had a little party today after work with the ladies from work which was  hoot.  PLUS Tuesday another friend said she wanted to go see South Pacific at RLT tonight but didn’t want to go alone so she was all “I’m buying two tickets and you’re coming!”  I take adult tap and jazz (one of the multitude of hobbies I’ll get into later) from her and have done a few shows with her at RLT so we had  a fantastic evening seeing our friends perform in a GREAT show.  And now I’m home and I said I was going to sleep half an hour ago but I’m writing instead.  Even though it’s 10 till midnight and I’m getting up around 3am with my boyfriend to go see the meteor shower!  We’re nuts but I love this meteor shower.  Church camp was always the first week in August so sometimes I would get to see it from the car in the drive on the way home and I have always remembered that.

I’m probably not making any sense because I’m completely EXHAUSTED and I’m not checking this for any grammar mistakes before I post it or adding any links so there.  The plan had been to go camping tomorrow night but it’s supposed to be 103 in Devil’s Den tomorrow and down to 74 as a low which means it would feel about 90 when we tried to go to sleep in a hot hot tent, I’m sure.  So I think I’ll try to get some projects done and get started reading instead.

Have a great Friday!

Monday, August 9, 2010


I have a book problem.  I don’t so much read books as devour them.  I relish an afternoon this used book shop:


(Photo from

Digging through these treasures:


(Photo from Green AR by the Day)

But I also have one little quirk.  Yup.  Just the one.  No others.  Why are you looking at me like that?  STOP STARING!  And pointing.  And laughing.  Fine.  One of my many, many quirks has to do with books.  I get very attached to books that I love and sometimes I find myself falling into the habit of jealously guarding my reading time and reserving it for books with which I’ve already made friends.  Old, dear friends.  They’re practically family.  They might even be who I leave my hypothetical future children to in my will.  I’m serious (except for the inanimate object as beneficiaries part).  I am deeply attached to some of my books.  I’m on my second set of the Anne Series (I wore out the first set). 

Incidentally, I was going to link that to a certain official website, but then I realized they are all proud of the 3rd movie they did a few years ago called Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story and decided that they do not deserve the added traffic.  Because the movie behind the DVD cover you see below?  Biggest travesty ever inflicted upon literature.  I’m not exaggerating.  I would kind of very much like to punch Kevin Sullivan right in the throat for that one.  And I’m not really a violent person.  OK, so maybe I wouldn’t punch him for real, but I dream of meeting him someday, looking him in the eye and saying to him “You, sir, should be very, VERY ashamed of yourself,” and walking away.  That would be delectable, but it wouldn’t wipe this piece of trash from existence:


Ugh….just looking at it makes me angry.

But I digress.  Someday I will definitely write a little something about how L.M. Montgomery and Anne Shirley changed my life.  That little something might take you a few days to read so you should probably bring a snack.  For today I’ll just leave it at “I take my books and the characters within their pages very much to heart.”  Hopefully that gives a pretty good idea of how I feel about my books.  And now we finally get to my little problem with them.

Sometimes I get all wound up with rereading my old favorites and stop reading anything new for weeks. Months.  Probably not years though.  I mean, come on, let’s be reasonable.  The problem with me rereading all my old favorites is that I have a bit of a penchant for series’.  Because I get so attached to the characters I don’t like to say goodbye to them after one book.  So I love me some series’.  The more books on the list the better.  The problem being that rereading each series at least once a year takes up a lot of time.  Even when I’m reading several books at once.  Right now I have one in the living room, two on my nightstand, one at my boyfriend’s house and one in my car.  Only two of those are new books.  So I have a new plan.  A plan that sort of scares me. 

I’m not going to read anything that I have already read for the next 6 months.

I started to make it a year but I almost had a panic attack just contemplating the very idea of not getting to read the Little House books in a nice hot bubble bath for a whole 365 days.  525,600 minutes! Oh dear, that gives me the vapors!  Maybe I’ll get brave later and make it a whole year but for now that’s a little too daunting. 

In order to make sure I stick to it I’ll keep track of my reading list here and post my reviews of all of the books I read.  So if you have any suggestions let me know!

FIRST I have to finish the book I’m re-reading for probably about the 11th or 12th time; The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon.  I LOVE this series.  It’s sort of historical fiction/sci-fi/romance.  Once that is placed lovingly back in it’s space on the bookshelf I will dig into Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller.