Thursday, October 29, 2009

I need a shot

I have yet to get a flu shot. In fact, I'm not certain that I will. I have no arguments for them or against them; I just haven't decided yet. But I need a shot of somethin'.

So I'm going away for the weekend with my BFF's. Whenever I need to recharge, or relax, or renew my inner me, whenever my shine fades and needs to be polished, whenever my well becomes dry and needs to be filled, and sometimes even when I just need to have my ass kicked, I turn to my girlfriends.

And there will be shots aplenty. Shots of love. Shots of understanding. Shots of laughter (the almost pee your pants kind). And sometimes shots of tequila. Combine all that with a dose of good food (lots), a dose of entertainment, and a huge dose of shopping, and the prognosis is good.

to girlfriends!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

More Miscellany

things that have made me smile lately . . .

My Mother-in-law called me last weekend to see if I'd taken my hubby to see "Where the Wild Things Are." She said it was his favorite book as a little boy. 21 years together, and I didn't know that! I can't tell you how many times I've been at the book store and stared at the book, thinking I should buy it, but I never picked it up. Will have to next time I'm there.

My daughter is a huge Twilight fan, and I must admit that I loved the books and have seen the movie a couple of times. (I blame it on my teenage heart.) She has invited me to go with her and her girlfriends to the first showing of "New Moon" at midnight on November 20th. I think it's super cool that she invited me. Of course, I'll have to nap first and probably get to work late the next day, but it'll be totally worth it.

I got a couple tomato plants planted on Saturday. It was a bit of work because I had to dig out quite a bit of bermuda grass first. And it got hot enough that I was drenched in sweat and my face got really red. As I sat in the shade on the patio, catching a nice breeze while cooling (and drying) off, a butterfly came fluttering in. Only for a few seconds, then it was on its way again. But it totally made me smile.

I also removed a bunch of "babies" from my cactus plant and put them in little pots. Some of the babies are only an inch across and are in teeny tiny clay pots; some are about three inches across and are in a little bit bigger clay pots. They are all on an iron etagere and are now my "nursery." Makes me smile.

I enjoyed a cup of chai on Sunday afternoon - something I hadn't had all summer long. It was delish - so much so that I took a thermos of it to work with me today. It even stayed warm until lunch time. I was smiling again.

I found the 1940's version of "The Phantom of the Opera" starring Claude Raines in with my old VHS tapes. Got comfy on the loveseat while hubby was gone and popped it into the VCR. (Getting ready for this coming weekend!)

Made another tag. Also did some journal pages, but will post them another time.

I actually finished a book. I have started several over the last few months, but didn't ever finish any of them. Either it was too complicated, or too boring, or I'd just let too much time lapse between starting it and picking it up again and needed to start over. Now - what to read next?

Have a wonderful rest of the week friends!

to the little things that make you smile,


I might make a tag later this evening for Tuesday Tag Challenge, but nothing I create can compare to this. The most magnificent sunrise! How can today be anything but perfect after a beginning as glorious as this?

Have a glorious day,

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Thursday, October 22, 2009

List Lovers Thursday

So it's my favorite time of year - in case I hadn't already mentioned that. Even though the daylight comes a little later and goes a little sooner every day, I must, must, MUST get outside everyday. We have enjoyed some time each evening after work on the back patio. I get home, kick off my shoes, grab a big glass of water and the day's mail, and retreat to the loveseat out back. Hubby is usually there already enjoying a cold drink on the glider. On Tuesday I moved my little TV (that's also very old) out there and we sometimes have our dinner there. I think I even caught a cat nap on Monday evening. It's become our little oasis.

I have a few palms, a couple of cacti and succulents, some ferns and spider plants, and even a little lemon tree in pots on the patio. Out in the yard I've planted a few herbs in a small bed, trimmed up some fountaingrass in a couple of beds and borders, and still need to clean up a couple of other beds to get ready for some new plants. And here's where I always get into trouble.

I always plant tomatoes - it's a given. After that, anything goes. I'll prepare the spot for the tomatoes and dig out the tomato cages. I make my trip to the store to buy a tomato plant or two, but usually come home with much, much more. I just can't resist the happy little faces of a pansy, or the texture of a lamb's ear, or the way a little succulent seems to grow in a spiral, or even the idea of cutting a bunch of kale and digging up a couple of beets to cook for supper.

So here is my list - a list of things I'd like to plant this year. Some are practical and do-able, and some are just pie-in-the-sky, but fun to dream about nonetheless.
  • lettuce (red oak leaf, deer tongue, Simpson black-seeded)
  • radishes (German Giant and Pink Beauty)
  • chocolate mint
  • lavender
  • society garlic
  • Baja Fairy Duster
  • violas
  • Mexican Primrose
  • shallots
  • millet and purple millet
  • lamb's ear
  • yarrow
  • Mexican Red Hat
  • butterfly bush
  • popcorn bush
  • catnip
  • zucchini
  • beets
  • yellow beets
  • swiss chard
  • kale
  • basil
  • nasturtiums
  • salvia
  • flame tree
  • alyssum
  • hollyhocks
  • sweet peas
  • morning glories

Here's to playing in the dirt!

Monday, October 19, 2009

No Falling Leaves or Snow Here . . .

. . . but I do have a wonderful fall recipe to share with you.

The weekend before last, the weather here was perfect. Out on the back patio, the mornings were crisp and the evenings were perfect for relaxing on the glider or curling up in a wicker chair and watching the sunset. Since then, it's gotten toasty again. But I took advantage of the great weather and did a little cooking.

I'd been in the mood for something that smelled and tasted like fall. Something that smelled and tasted spicy and pumpkin-y. I went in search of a recipe for waffles, and hit the jackpot with the very first one I tried. The recipe says that it serves 8. Since there are just the two of us, that meant lots to go in the freezer for quick breakfasts during the week. They toast up perfectly and smell divine coming out of the toaster. They're wonderful with good old fashioned maple syrup, but also great made into a sandwich with apple butter oozing out the sides. Perfect for dropping into my tote bag to eat at work - except that everyone wants one!

Spiced Pumpkin Waffles

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
4 large eggs
2 cups buttermilk
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat waffle iron. Combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cloves in a large bowl and set aside. Whisk together eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin, sugar, butter, and vanilla in another large bowl until smooth. While whisking, add the flour mixture and blend until smooth. Generously coat the waffle iron with vegetable oil and cook the batter in the waffle iron as recommended in the manufacturer's
instructions. Repeat with remaining batter.


P.S. If you're not in the mood for making waffles, I did find Count Chocula, Franken Berry, and Boo Berry cereals at Target yesterday. My son used to love them. I had to buy a box just because of the nostalgia!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Six Word Saturday

Herbs, tomatoes, and flowers - oh my!

This is one of my favorite times of year. The weather is finally changing here. Baby lettuces can be seen in all the fields I pass when I drive to and from work every day, and garden centers are gearing up for planting season for home gardeners.

So far, I've cleaned up last year's herb bed and partially replanted, and this morning I managed to trim up some very overgrown purple fountaingrass. I even washed the windows in my kitchen and dining room so the view out to the backyard is that much nicer. Unfortunately, temperatures rose again this week and the last couple of days have been over 100 degrees. So that's where the outdoor chores ended today. There is still so much to do, but I guess it'll happen all in good time.

Maybe I'll post another list next Thursday - of all the things I'd like to plant this year. It could be a long one!

To enjoy other Six Word Saturdays, visit here.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

List Lovers' Thursday

Way back when, when I was very much a newbie blogger, my Thursdays for a while were devoted to lists, and, in fact, I called them List Lovers Thursdays (even though once I did it on a Friday, and once it was about a Friday).

So, today being Thursday and all, I am in the mood for a list. (Besides, Liz did a list today and now I want to too!) Tomorrow is my every-other-Friday-off Friday, (YAY!) and there are some things I should do and some things I could do.

Could do:

** make (or find) templates for envelopes for mailing tags and ATC's, and then make a couple envelopes so I can mail a tag to Mari.

** send some snail mail to Diva Kreszl and Jeanette. I don't know yet what it'll be, but must be something special!

** and i must come up with something wonderful to send the The Fragrant Muse as it's her birthday tomorrow!

** hunt for treasure (aka taking a trip to the second hand store). Did I tell you that the last time I went I bought a poker chip holder? It's a nice wooden one that spins, and it's perfect for holding my small bottles of craft paints on my craft desk.

** I found some turkey meatballs at the grocery store last weekend and I'm in the mood for some spaghetti.

** Find a Michael's coupon and buy another ink pad.

** Take a new photo of my front porch with my scarecrow on the front door and a pumpkin and marigolds out front and replace the photo currently in my sidebar.

** Nap. (one of my personal favorites)

Should do:

** make hotel reservations for our trip to see Phantom of the Opera in two weeks.

** send haiku to a postcrossing friend that I sent a postcard to earlier this week.

** pull up the bermuda grass and bird seed that's sprouted to get ready to plant tomatoes and radishes and nasturtiums.

** clean out some old magazines to make room for my new Craft Spinner.

Of course there will be coffee in the morning on the patio while I contemplate the possibilities that the day holds. And maybe even a cup in the afternoon (after the nap of course).

I hope your Friday is beautiful.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesday

What do you wish to let go?

Such a great question! We are always wishing for things. How wonderful to focus on ridding ourselves of something useless. Thank you Jamie.

I could list quite a number of things here that I would benefit from letting go: expectations, self criticism, doubt, worry. But, for me, they all really boil down to one thing - guilt. A horrible, horrible concept that has plagued me since grade school, or perhaps even before. And I am fairly certain that it will be my constant companion until my final day in this body. I am aware that I carry too much guilt, ridiculously so, but I've also resigned myself to the fact that it's just a part of who I am. I'm not sure I'll ever be able to drastically change it. I am just one of those people who wants (needs?) to make everybody happy all the time. And when I don't . . .

For example, when I speak my mind and tell someone how I really feel about something, knowing that I have every right to do so and, in fact, owe it to myself to do so, and what I've said is not well received, I feel guilty. If I call in sick to work - with a migraine or a cold, for instance - I feel guilty. I could go to work with a headache or a cold after all. If I fall behind in replying to e-mails, or neglect to answer the telephone when I really don't feel like talking, I feel guilty.

A couple of months ago, I ran across the following quote by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche from Tricycle Magazine.

Regret, Not Guilt

The difference between guilt and regret is that the guilt never faces the wrongdoing straightforwardly. There's just this strong emotion of "I wish it hadn't happened. I wish I hadn't done it. I wish I had never gotten angry." Or, "I wish I hadn't done that embarrassing thing," and so on. Regret is the opposite of guilt. We acknowledge it, we expose to ourselves that we have done something harmful, and how it came about from our ignorance, but we don't get caught in emotions or story lines.

While I don't completely follow that logic, I do appreciate the delineation between guilt and regret. And I need to remind myself of it more often.

So, I wish to let go of that toxin - guilt.

Hoping all your wishes come true! Here's to letting go.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Please Write

I once wrote about how much I love sending and receiving mail - actual pieces of paper on which someone has written with ink and sealed in an envelope and stamped and dropped in a mailbox. It's about how personal it is, and the connection, however small and taken for granted it may be, that it is to another person.

So when I read "Please Write: Don't Phone" by Robert Watson in "Good Mail Day," I just smiled and thought to myself, "Exactly." I thought I'd share it with you.

Please Write: Don't Phone

While there is mail there is hope.
After we have hung up I can't recall
Your words, and your voice sounds strange
Whether from distance, a bad cold, deceit,
I don't know. When you call I'm asleep
Or bathing or my mouth is full of toast.
I can't think of what to say.
"We have rain?" "We have snow?"
Let us write instead: surely our fingers spread out
With pen on paper touch more of the mind's flesh
Than the sound waves moving from throat to lips
To phone, through wire, to one ear.
I can touch the paper you touch.
I can see you undressed in your calligraphy.
I can read you over and over.
I can read you day after day.
I can wait at the mailbox with my hair combed,
In my best suit.
I hang up. What did you say?
What did you say? Your phone call is gone.
I hold the envelope you addressed in my hand.
I hold the skin that covers you.

Yes, that's it exactly.

Tuesday Tag Challenge

Pink and Brown

While Lucky Louise at Kard Krazy cruises on the Artful Voyage in Mexico with Tim Holtz, Nancy at Sugar Lump Studios is graciously hosting Tuesday Tag Challenge this week. Her theme -- pink and brown. Thank you Nancy!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Double Trouble

My take on the Double Trouble theme today at Wednesday Stamper. I'm having so much fun playing with Tim Holtz products - mostly inkpads and clear stamps so far. (the stamp of the girl is not Tim Holtz; it's old and not labeled.) The colors are so gorgeous. I can't wait to play some more this weekend.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tuesday Tag Challenge

It's Tuesday Tag Challenge time again at Kard Krazy. This week's theme is shabby chic, which I love. I just think it's sweet.

This week, I got to use some old paper doilies, some leftover stickers from scrapbooking, some leftover ribbon, and more inks.

Happy Tuesday!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Corset Bling

For Gingersnap Creations (love the name - knew I'd love the blog!) GC22, Spicy Supply Challenge using bling.

Used some vintage clipart from The Vintage Moth, some glitter and some metallic embroidery thread for stitching on the corset.

to living brightly,

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Theme Thursday Challenge


You know how one thing leads to another? Well, as a result of finding KardKrazy's Tuesday Tag Challenge the other day, I've also run across Theme Thursday - another invitation to be creative. This week's theme is wings.