Posts Tagged ‘people’

I see a lot of Bucket Lists out there and I considered making one for myself until I realized this morning that my list is really one that is more impressive from an achievement standpoint, rather than a goals standpoint.  It’s just that I like the spontaneity of where my life takes me from one day to the next.

So rather than having a bucket list such as this one:

  1. Climb Mt. Everest
  2. Kill and cook my own dinner
  3. Join mile high club (those bathrooms are SO small!)
  4. Travel all of Europe with only a backpack(yeah… like the backpack part’ll ever happen!)

My list is as follows:

  1. Push 7.5lb human from extremely small opening in body: CHECK
  2. Deer hunting w/ hubby in an attempt to kill my own dinner (what was I thinking?): CHECK
  3. Fall down county courthouse steps and take my attorney with me(that was fun!): CHECK
  4. accidentally Insult client with misdirected, snarky reply-all email: CHECK
  5. Take header off of back deck, graze entire forearm against an overgrown rose-bush and nearly break my neck: CHECK

There you have it – the surprising events in life are really what make it so… much… fun!

To further this argument, I tried to attempt the stylistic and artsy feel of this quilt.  And, as many of you know, I’m really not a quilter – I get bored easily and without a change in direction, they end up in my closet, unfinished.  There are two there now, as a matter of fact.

So, wild-hair in place, I got to cutting last weekend and this is what I have so far.  Disappointing!

I thought the color combinations were coming together just fine and then I started laying it out and now I think it sucks rocks!

Maybe it’s the lighting?


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… strumming my life with its words.

“Faster than a speeding bullet! More powerful than a locomotive! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound! (“Look! Up in the sky!” “It’s a bird!” “It’s a plane!” “It’s a Kindle!”)… Yes, it’s a Kindle … strange visitor from another planet, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men! Kindle … who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel, fight a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way!”

I have been “Kindled” and there is no putting out this fire!

I will forever relish the stacks of books lining the shelves in my family room, the smells of new text, and the calls of bookstores and libraries, far and wide… but I am now shamelessly and forever in love with this tablet.


Come on, you know you want one….

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The person who came up with Daylight Savings did not have a child, or they at least didn’t do the majority of the child rearing.  Jerk.  This is evil punishment which has been placed upon working mothers worldwide.

So here I am writing, a day late, about my Sunday.  I blame it on Daylight Savings…. All of it.

Sunday morning 9:15. I have not turned the clocks ahead.  I forgot.  Oh, I knew it was coming.  I was warned, gently reminded and even received several email and voicemail so that I would not forget.  I’m sure you’ve met them, those people who like to do that.  They are the ones that appear at your office door, well rested and exhibiting zero caffeine withdrawal, “So… ya ready for that time change this weekend?” followed by a chuckle.

Then they hang there for a few more seconds, grinning and waiting because they know the response that’s coming.  Slowly, from the mountain of growing paperwork on my desk, does my fuzzy head come up.  As my eyes are trying to adjust to the figure in the door, I slowly utter,  “Uh, whu?” and roll my eyes.  Then, with more vigor and passion, I bark out a strong “No!”

My salvation: it’s a Sunday.  I love Sundays.  This one especially because it’s raining and chilly and I have the day to do with what I want.  And one thing I want to do on this glorious day is bake.

Craving peanut butter cookies, I cranked out a batch of peanut butter chocolate chip cookies – of which a dozen were packaged off to Texas for Darrell.


1 stick butter
1 C peanut butter
3/4 C white sugar*
1/2 C brown sugar
1 egg
1 t vanilla
1 T milk
1 1/4 C flour
3/4 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
1 1/2 C chocolate chips
350 Oven.
Blend well in large bowl first set of ingredients. In smaller bowl combine the 2 set of ingredients, add to first set and mix well.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Form into 1 1/2 balls and then flatten slightly with hand.  Bake 10-12 min.  Don’t let them get too brown.  You want them somewhat undercooked feeling.  They’ll firm up as the cool.
*reduce the sugar by 1/4 C if you use a sweetened peanut butter.  We use 100% peanut butter, no sugar added, and these turn out fairly sweet.

After my baking session the real rain hit. 

It was coming in sheets and with a strong wind that made me wonder if we were going to have some trees come down in our neighborhood.  I soon realized that our gutters were spilling over the sides – which wouldn’t really bother me so much if it didn’t result in a flooded garage.  Blargh.  I wrestled up a ladder and proceeded to clean the gutters, with my bare hands and in the continuing downpour (sporting my fuzzy red slippers, black workout pants and a white T, no less!  A girl’s got a reputation to uphold!)

I now love my husband ten times more than ever!  He’s the gutter guy.  So, I got a little wet? And there’s some unidentifiable black gunk under my nails that has me a little concerned?  Big deal?  At least I was able to work off that two-cookies-worth of dough that I accidentally ate….  Oh, then there was the spoon and mixing paddle that I had to lick clean… and the chocolate chip sampling.

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Serial Sewer

I ventured on to Craigslist tonight.  I have been there before.  My past relationships with Craigslist have been brief but successful.  I have sold a couple of items and found a few estate sales worth exploring.  The key to my success has been boundaries: I call the shots.

What prompted tonight’s visit was that I would like to find a couple of vintage 1940’s sewing patterns. I couldn’t think of a better tool for this search than using Craigslist!  But, some of the ads are so… disturbing.  Like this ad which was, incidentally, posted by a man whose name I’ve changed to “Norm”.  I have made some comments/observations in red.


I have a bunch of patterns. Many are vintage that belonged to my mother. Others belonged to my neighbor who gave them to me. My mother and I are not into sewing. My 90 year old mother is writing a novel, a couple sci fi stories and so on… [Translation: she’s too busy to sew with all of the literary opportunities coming her way. Big book deal in the works, too.  She is 90, after all.] 

I do not know much about these patterns. Some are from the 60s when I did a little sewing. [Translation: he’s about 60] Some are from the 70s or 80s. I know this because my mother and my neighbor both told me this. However, I am not sure how to tell the dates of them. I would LOVE for someone to come look and help me figure out what is what! [Translation: I just finished watching “The Silence of the Lambs” and I felt a real connection with the antagonist(Buffalo Bill).]

Come see.  [Come alone]  Make an offer on them. I am suggesting 2 dollars each. That is not a set price at all.

I also have many things not listed so just ask if I have something you want, and we may be lucky!  [I wonder if he’d let me check out his basement?] I want to give you GREAT prices and REAL value. Please feel free to ask for deals and favors and to make offers! [Are we still talking about the sewing patterns?]

I am selling things to clean up the extra items we have (downsize) [Translation: He lives with his mother and she’s been MIA for a few weeks] and to generate a little extra income to help my 89 year old mother. [Wait, I thought she was 90….]

I live on the ____ River. If it is nice weather, come on out with kids and/or doggies!! I love them all! [Serial killer] I have a big safe yard and two adorable orange cats! [My dogs would eat his cats]

Norm (503) ###-####

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A ghetto crime scene

Our house was broken into last night.  It happened after dinner, at about 9:00 pm.

Darrell was all packed for his trip to Texas and we were left counting the hours before his departure at the unGodly hour of 4:00 this morning.  As is usual with Darrell’s military departures, we were faced with a minor household “issue” in the days leading up to his trip.  This time, the garage door was opening and closing at random times, day and night.  Regardless, we had decided earlier in the day to eat out at one of our favorite burger places in Portland.  So, on our way out to dinner, while Darrell and Norah waited in the car in the driveway, I unplugged the garage door mechanism and then left the house through the front door.  Unbeknownst to Darrell or me, neither one of us brought along a house key!!

And let me tell you, there is nothing more frustrating than not being able to get into your own home!  After testing all doors and windows, we weighed the options:  locksmith + time + ultra early wake-up + Norah without a coat (Mommy guilt moment.  In my defense, I was not aware of this until we were miles from home) v. break a window.  Breaking the window won by a landslide and surprisingly, in hindsight, pretty quickly after a few of my unsuccessful attempts to force my way in. 

I first straddled some Hydrangea bushes, one leg precariously poised on a garden hose caddy, in an attempt to reach and dislodge a window from its track; tried to wedge my Burgerville points card in the front door to jimmy the lock (I swear this worked in a Law and Order episode I once watched, but the choice of card may have been a key factor); and a unsuccesful attempt involving the oversized spatula from the gas grill accessory box.  Darrell kind of patiently waited, watching my attempts and, of course, knowing that they would all fail. 

Finally, wielding an axe, he broke a window.  The sound was incredible.  Given the recent crime spree in our neighborhood, he suggested I give the neighbors next door a heads up.  I quickly imagined that interaction: Norah shivering at my side with the “why wouldn’t you call a locksmith” question hanging in the air between the neighbor and me.  I didn’t budge. 

After we were all cleaned up, Darrell was preparing to cover the gaping hole in the glass.  I referred him to my painting supplies, suggesting that he use a piece of my thick, plastic tarp.  I knew that the plastic would work well to keep out the cold until I could get the glass repaired.  Heck – three-weeks durable, baby!!  Oh, how my husband knows me…  ignoring my suggestion, he returned to the scene of the crime, wielding packing tape and a plastic Albertson’s bag, “Because I know you are going to call the glass company right away to get this repaired.”  Damn.

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I started this post over a week ago and due to family illness, a birthday, and a blizzard that crippled the region, I was forced to set aside blogging and sewing.


Norah had to stay home from school for a few days because she came down with a gastrointestinal virus – AGAIN.  This is the second occurence of this vile illness that we have experienced in the span of two weeks.  Apparently, parents are sending their kids back to school too soon.  The problem is so bad that the school nurse sent email instructions on proper hand washing, hygiene and guidelines for returning kids to school after an illness.

While cruising the internet for color pages to print for Norah [yes, I am a brilliant and perfect parent who never lets her child consume simple sugars or watch television], I came across an ad for dishwasher detergent with a link that promised to provide techniques for proper dishwasher loading.  Well, WHOA!  Hold.The.Phone. [There are some who believe that my dishwasher-loading-skills are sub par.]  So, what a treat to stumble upon these instructions, and better yet, they included: *wait… for… it…* . . . an illustrated diagram! I was beginning to feel things were really turning around for me. 

The instructions were very detailed yet succinct; laying out each step so that should you fall off the face of the earth and lose all domestic capacity, you could jump right back into dishwasher loading and not skip a beat.  They were also very positive and reassuring, never using “you” statements to point out your loading flaws, which I found very comforting.  Instead, they soothingly relayed what damage your mislaid dishes could pose to the energy efficiency of the dishwasher, your priceless Tupperware or, God forbid, THE environment.  The instructions even went as far as to advise not to put forks and knives handle-down in the utensil basket, in order to prevent any unintended impalement during loading.  Good to know.  Not long after I’d settled into the soothing guidance of each step, I soon realized that these are the exact procedures I use for loading!  Okay, well, most of them.

I was speaking to a client on the telephone the other day and she kept telling me: “Keep it simplestupid.  Just keep it simplestupid.”  She wasn’t calling me stupid [which is what I keep telling myself], but providing instruction regarding the work she requested.  It took every bit of restraint for me not to remind her that she was requesting this from a law firm.

Gotta go – time to take Norah’s temperature and heat up some canned soup.  If I have time, I’m going to unload the dishwasher!

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Back in the “olden” days, I would love to go to the library or a local bookstore (better for latte sipping) and pick out a generous stack of crafting and sewing books that I could devour while tucked away in a quiet corner.  I would jot down ideas and then emerge hours sometime later, blinking in the bright light of day as I made my way back to my car, motivated to take on innumerable projects.

Fast forward to last year and with similar enthusiasm, I could be found pleasantly engrossed in other sewer’s and crafter’s blogs.  Not that this was a bad thing – but access to my laptop and my own espresso machine lent to a blog-following habit that was bordering on obsession.  An hour A good chunk of time would pass, and with just a few clicks I crossed several nations and removed myself from my point of origin tenfold.  I realized that I was spending way too much of my idle time observing how other people were living their lives via their blog entries and sewing projects, all the while accomplishing nothing in my own world of sewing and writing (sounds remarkably similar to reality TV viewing ~ another time-passing pleasure of mine ~ but I’m not ready to join “Real Housewives of Vantucky” just yet.).  Bottom line: I needed to get my butt off the couch and back into my sewing.  Born from this epiphany came two of my (many) New Year’s resolutions.  Number 3 – Sew! and Number 6 – Blog about my Sewing.

The labor of love for today was completing this small gift for Erika.  It is a fully lined cosmetics bag and the lining has a coating of my favorite new sewing notion:  Iron-On Vinyl!

Erika – I hope you love this as much as I do!  If I had not blogged about it, it would be in my bathroom instead of on its way to yours!!

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