Monday, November 30, 2009

YAY!

Yay! 30 entries in 30 days!! Woot!

I finished Grammie's Christmas socks last night. I will definitely be using the leg and heel pattern again. I really like the way they turned out and it's a good use for plain, non-striping sock yarn!

I made a wicked good supper last night. There is no recipe....'cause we don't need no stinkin' recipe! Just saute three minced garlic cloves, salt, pepper and whatever other spices you like in olive oil in a large skillet. Add sea scallops. Cook on one side for 2 minutes. Flip. Add a package of fresh baby spinach and put the cover on until it wilts.

Then toss it with pasta of your choice. I like angel hair but I only had thin so that's what I used this time.

Put some freshly grated Parmesan on the top and TA DA! Simple tasty supper! Jazz it up with a salad and some crusty bread. I'll bet it would work with shrimp too.


NOM!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thank Goodness for Blog Buddies

Just got a comment on my last blog entry reminding me that Monday is actually the last day of November, not today. So I have TWO more entries to complete NaBloPoMo; today and TOMORROW. How sad would that have been...to blow the whole thing because I can't read a calendar? I just figured, hey, December is coming next week, might's well start it out first thing on Monday!

This here is a picture of my BubberKev and I at Thanksgiving. We're taking a momentary break from strangling each other to goof at the camera. Our mamma must be so proud!

Back to online Christmas shopping! Have a great Sunday evening!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Light at The End Of The Tunnel!

Today and tomorrow and that's it for NaBloPoMo! Yay! It's just too hard to think of something interesting to post every day. I'm sure you've noticed!

I put up a few Christmas decorations this morning, but have 99.9% decided to not put up a tree this year. It'll just be me and Mr. Happy Waggy Tail here this year. I have to redecorate the bottom 3rd of the tree every time he goes by it, so I think it will be a low key year in the decorating department.

Went to Last Saturday Knitting this afternoon. I am so blessed to know such wonderful women. We always have a great time. I worked on Grammies second white lace sock. I finished the cuff, did the eye of the partridge heel flap, turned the heel and did half the foot in two hours. And I double checked when I got home...I did it correctly! Usually I'm such a chatty monkey that I have to rip out any work I do at Last Saturday or Knit Night the next day because it's wonky.

Now I'm settling in to watch Dr. Who and Robin Hood and finish the sock and my Christmas knitting will be DONE! Before December! Just barely I know, but it still counts! Have a great Saturday night!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Back in the U.S.

Paris is nothing like they say. Coming in to town, the sign says 'Established in 1836'. All the books about Paris make it sound like it's waaaay older don't they? The natives were all really nice; so polite and helpful, and there wasn't any sign of the language problem that I had been warned to expect. There's a slight inkling of a southern twang but it's cute rather than snotty like they described. It didn't impede any of my business dealings at local stores or eateries. Their money was remarkably the same as ours. I guess Paris must have just said 'no' the the Euro. There weren't as many croissants as they implied there would be but the Thanksgiving dinner there (even though I was told that they don't celebrate Turkey Day in Paris-but they do) was scrumptious and more than made up for the lack of pretentious bread. I also didn't have any of the Customs problems I had heard about, coming back through Chicago.


Some things were like they say though. I did see the Eiffel Tower. In fact we had a lovely breakfast at a small bistro right next to it. It's smaller and redder than it looks in some of the other photos I've seen but it's still pretty impressive. They make fabulous 'American Fries' which I thought was amusing given that we call the same things 'French Fries' here in the U.S.. They have a wonderful sense of humor down there that they definitely don't mention when they are telling you about their Paris vacation. I think all of the negativity is just a smoke screen to keep the place to themselves.
All in all I had a wonderful Parisian Thanksgiving and wouldn't hesitate to travel abroad again, although I must say it was good to get back to the United States of Madison this afternoon for a good long nap! Globe trotting is exhausting although I didn't have the jet lag problems they complain about either! But at any rate, the moral of the story is, don't listen to 'them'. I'm giving it to you straight. Paris is a friendly affordable place to visit and I highly recommend it.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Gay Paree

Ben and I made it down to Paris just fine yesterday. I gave him a new bone which kept him occupied in the backseat the whole way so he didn't continually lick the back of my head the hole way giving me troll hair. That isn't to say that he didn't give me a couple of cursory licks now and then just to let me know that he was still back there.

Went out to dinner last night with Kevin and Shiela and new nieces, Kali, Kelsey and Brianne as well as Brianne's boyfriend David. Ben stayed home with one year old boxer, Sophie and 3 month old Peekapoo Izzi. It's a full house but it's nice to have some noise and activity around.

Shiela has been knocking herself out making Thanksgiving dinner and I counted 5 desserts out there so far. I am trying to stay out from underfoot in the kitchen while making sure I'm close at hand to annoy my brother in the living room. It's a delicate balance....but I believe I am achieving greatness in this arena. I've had years of practice!

Wishing everyone a safe and happy Turkey Eatin' Day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Road Trip!

*Mr Gobble Gobble strapped in the front seat? Check!

*Mr. Bentley strapped in the back seat? Check!

*Illinois map and driving directions? Check!

*Industrial sized coffee for the drive? Check!

*Instructions for folks staying at my place this weekend conveyed? (Just giggle the handle...it will stop!)Check!

*Socks and underwear? Check!

*Enough needles and yarn to teach new sis and 3 branks spankin' new nieces to knit? Check! (Never missing an opportunity to lure minions to the 'dark side'...priceless)!

*Nablopomo # 25? CHECK!

Let's be careful out there today people! If you're jammin' to Cat Stevens today too, seat dance with me! Otherwise put down the Big Mac, the Norellco, the mascera and the cell phone and just drive safely!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Oy NaBloPoMo Is Killing Me!

I'm a busy girl getting ready for Turkey Day. As busy as I am, nothing significant enough to post about has occurred today, and yet, her I am! NaBloPoMo Day 24! Am looking forward to seeing Bubber Kev and his bride and my new nieces tomorrow. I should say, new to me nieces because they are all grown up young ladies of 15, 19 and 22 but still. Wonder how Bubber Kev will fare against FIVE feisty females for a couple of days!?! Heh! Heh! Heh!

I'm hoping Sistah Shiela will lend me her laptop so that I can post from their house on Thursday! Hate to blow this blogging every day in November thing just when I'm nearing the home stretch! If you're hitting the road for the holidays, drive carefully and have a wonderful trip!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Holiday Secrets Countdown

Counting down the days until Ben and I go to my brother's for Turkey Day. Just talked to them last night and found out, that in addition to their 1 year old boxer, they just got a 3 month old Peek-A-Poo or some such adorable little white pup (much like Wee Fergus may he rest in peace!). Old Ben will be in his glory. He needs some play time. He's been a little depressed since he fell off the sidewalk last week. He still has a slight hitch in his gitalong but it's nothing serious. He's just bruised but is being a drama queen about it. He's such a delicate flower!

I finished one of Grammie's Christmas socks and LOVE the pattern. It's a 5 stitch pattern from one of Charlene Schurch's 'Sensational Socks' books.

I also did an Eye Of The Partridge heel which gives it a little different look. I really like how they are turning out and I think I'm going to have to make a pair for me! I'll have to go stash diving because this is definitely a stitch pattern that looks best in a plain color and most of my sock yarn is wild and stripey, but I'm confident that there is probably and errant ball of purple in there somewhere! Can't start them until after the holidays though as I have several Christmas projects in the works right now. Can't tell you...it's a secret!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Nablopomo # 22

This is going to be short since I burned one of my typing fingers to a crisp on a hot cookie sheet. Am I taking one for the Nablopomo team or what!?!

I receive an email every day called Megan's Munchies. Today's recipe was for SnickerDoodle Pie. It's basically a custard pie with a cinnamon sugar crust on top. It looked good and I had all the ingredients so I decided to make it. Megan made a vegan version but I made the original. It came out great and I'm going to shuttle some up to the boys upstairs in a few minutes. The recipe calls for the pie to be placed and then baked on a preheated cookie sheet in a 350° oven. I wish there had been a step in the instructions that said to make sure your left pinky finger wasn't between the pie dish and the hot cookie sheet when you set it down in the oven. Would have saved a lot of pain. And blue language air pollution. At least YOU'VE now been warned. It turns out that 350° is very, very hot. And pinky fingers don't like it. Not a bit. There. Now go forth and make an awesome owie-free pie!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Twilight Zone

I would just like you all to know that I show no pregidous when it comes to messing with people's heads. I am an equal opportunity pain in the butt. Christophe and I went to see the IMAX 3D version of A Christmas Carol (Don't do it! It was like a really bad carnival ride!) on Thursday night. Christophe is from France and has been to the states a few times but isn't a seasoned pro at it or anything and really should bhave been given some sarcasm amnesty....but no.

We walk into the theater and it's wall to wall, ceiling to floor, tween age girls, all dressed in their jammies, with their blankies and pillows waiting for the premiere of the new Twilight sequel 'New Moon'. Christophe is stunned and asks me what is going on. Without hesitation or though (in other words...business as usual) I say, 'Oh, this is where we keep our homeless girls. We keep the homeless boys at a different facility.' Sigh. I know. I've taken diplomacy classes. I know that a lot humor (especially my 'unique' brand of it) doesn't translate well internationally.

I smiled and looked at him and he had this deer in the headlights shocked look. (And not in a good way like when he saw the buffalo head hanging in a restaurant and I told him that it had run through the wall). We picked our way through the giggling gaggle of girls and I explained that I was just kidding and told him what they were really there for. I don't think he even heard the explanation as I could see the wheels turning in his head as to how he was going to convey this to his countrymen when he got home.

I didn't make matters better when we got to the car and discovered a post it on the windshield that just said 'Puppies aren't scary' written in green marker with little hearts around it. I read it and passed it to him. He looked confused and asked me what it meant. I said, 'It means that dogs that have just been born are nothing to be afraid of.' He said, 'I know, but why is this on your windshield (in that cute little Parisian accent of his). Now I realize we just left a building stuffed to the gills with girls. I was once a tween age girl so I can imagine a million scenarios as to how that particular note came to be attached to the windshield. But do I throw our a possible explanation as to how it came to be? No. I just shrugged nonchalantly and said, "I guess someone just wanted to let us know.' When I dropped him off he was muttering something about 'Crazy Americans.

So if you see something in a French tabloid about the US stockpiling homeless kids in movie theaters....um...yeah....that was me. Sorry!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Cutest! Turkey! Ever!

My patience and persistence has payed off! The first of the blackmail photos have started coming in. Upon inspection, I do have a dilemma though....

Is it a Turkey ?
... Or a Princess Laei !

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I've Tracked Down The Problem and It's YOU!

My first instinct when something isn't right is to think it's my fault. My second instinct is to try and fix it, smooth it out, apologize or otherwise makes amends. This morning one of the kids sent out a web link, via email, to our global colleagues. The web link led to a web page that I had built and now maintain. Wasn't long before he came to me to tell me that the international folks couldn't access the link. Oh My Gosh! I must have some permission errors on the page or something else wrong! I'll get right on it! I spent nearly two hours looking for the problem only to discover that the kid in question had simply typed the web address incorrectly in his email. This is commonly called a PICNIC Error (Problem In Chair Not In Computer). I took great delight in telling him, "I tracked the problem down and it's YOU!" That was the first of TWO times I got to use that phrase this morning. Feels good to have the shoe on the other foot! Now if I'd only grow a modicum of self esteem and at least suspect that it could possibly be someone else's error first, I could save HOURS of time!

Tonight I am taking Christophe, from our branch in Lyon France, to dinner and a movie. We are going to see A Christmas Carol in IMAX 3-D. I don't know if he's ever experienced IMAX 3-D before. I hope not! It would be neat to be the first to show him something so cool. I don't remember much of the French I took in HS and College, so I'll just make do speaking English in my cheesiest Inspector Jacques Clouseau accent to make him feel more comfortable. Should be a fun evening!
(NABloPoMo Day 19)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Turkey Suprise!

I started off today with a rainbow! Here is a photo of it on it's way out. I knew that it was a sign that today would go better than yesterday. Or at least that it would be sunny and rainy at the same time!


Since it has been delivered today, I can finally post pics of Sweet William's Super Secret Thanksgiving Suprise project.


Behold, the Turkey Carcass Thanksgiving hat!


He's going to hate me for life!


I am the essence of pure evil! Heh Heh Heh!

Wanna torture your the kids in your life? The pattern is on Ravelry. It's very poorly written with lots of mistakes in it but I made it through. It's pretty gnarly up close but at a distance (and for photos of him wearing it that can be pulled out for his Prom date's entertainment at a later date) it's OK!

It's going to be difficult to find something more evil than this to make the kid wear for the upcoming Christmas holidays but Aunt Min is trying! Love you Cookie Boy! Your folks too! Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Doh! Ouch!

It's been one of those klutzy weeks. Monday I slipped in the bathroom. I didn't fall, but I twisted to catch myself and took all the skin off my arm on the texturizing on the wall. Yesterday I started in with a back spasm that is getting worse by the minute. Then I came home from work, hooked Bentley up on his retractable leash and let him run out onto the lawn to pee. He got to the end of the leash and I hadn't hooked it properly so it reeled back in at 90 miles an hour and the metal hook at the end caught me in the ribs. I have a bruise of epic proportions today. I feel (and walk) like I got hit by a bus.

And apparently it's contagious. I took Ben out and tossed the ball for him this noon. He went scrambling for it and fell off the sidewalk. The edge of the curb hit him in the ribs. He ran back in the house like he was fine, but when I got home tonight and petted his side, he squeaked. Tonight he's pretty low key and snuggly, although he got up on the couch with me pretty gingerly. I couldn't feel any broken ribs and after the initial squeak he let me touch him all over and didn't say a word so I'm suspecting he just has a nice bruise on his ribs like me! If he's still moving gingerly in a couple of days, I'll talk him to the vet.

Of course I have a full work and social schedule this week so no rest for the wickedly wounded. I SHOULD be wrapping myself in bubble wrap and hockey pads and curling up in the fetal position until the klutz storm blows over, but instead I have a lunch date with a friend tomorrow, dinner and a 3-D movie Thursday night with a guy visiting from Lyon, France. Coffee with one friend and lunch with another on Saturday. Oh, throw A Pampered Chef party, an oil change and a game night into that mix. On top of work. And then it's off to Paris IL for a couple of days. Yikes! I'm going to have to hire a housekeeper! Chores have always interfered with my knitting time but with all this social stuff now, somethings gotta give! I say HOUSEWORK!

Hope your week is going much more smoothly!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Shrunken Heads

You know how sometimes you’re just sitting around thinking. Gosh I wonder what I’d look like if I was captured by Cannibalistic African Head Hunters? Come on now! Admit it! We all do it! Here’s what I would look like. (Not for the faint of heart!) I’ve developed a severe overbite!

I LOVE Expedition Week on The National Geographic Channel! I am such a science geek. Give me documentaries on Head Hunters, The Mayan Calendar, Bog Mummies, The Bermuda Triangle, etc and I’m a happy, happy girl! Until last night. I tuned in to see the Head Hunter thing. It was OK-a lot of hype, but OK. Then the next show was on Celtic Druids. Now I LOVES me the Emerald Isle and all things Celtic so I snuggled down to watch. Started off OK…great imagery; narration was good. Then they trotted out their primary ‘expert’ for the show, Professor Miranda someone-or-other from the UK.

C’mon National Geographic! There has got to be more than one expert on this stuff. Could we not have found someone else? Anyone else?! This woman is a professor and I’m sure she knows here stuff but she has a holier than thou attitude and a major league speech impediment that makes Sylvester-‘Suffering Succotash’ The Cat sound like he’s crooning the gentle murmurings of Mel ‘The Velvet Fog’ Torme!

The FirTHZ fifteen minuteTHZ were BAD… then it got worTHZ when she STHarted getting excSTHZited and talking about how the RomanSTHZ STHZailed up the coaSTHZt to InSTHZinglaSTHZ ISTHZland and STHZarted STHZlaughering and maSTHZacuring the CelsTHZ. She waSTHZ literally froSTHZing at the mouSTHZ by the STHZhirty minute mark and I had to turn it off. It’s too bad because the information was good but she was so distracting that I couldn’t retain any of it. I think the program narrator was the silken voiced Peter Coyote which made her sound even worse. Now don't flame me. I know many people have speech issues. I have friends with lisps or stutters. I’m just saying that if you are dumping beaucoup bucks into filming a documentary and you want people to understand what you’ve discovered...Miranda's not your girl! She has a way too high distraction factor!

Now, I would have hired Colin Firth to be the expert. (Talk about distraction!) He’s in the UK anyway so we wouldn’t have airfare. The expert could have written down the facts on cue cards and Colin could have read them like he knew what he was talking about. He’s got that acting thing down. That way I would be able to ogle Colin and understand the information and learn about Celtic Druids…. and Miranda would get to spend on set time with Colin Firth! It’s a win/win plan as far as I’m concerned!

And that said, the rant it over. Now go shrink your heads!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Doubt

OMGosh you Guys! I just watched 'Doubt' this afternoon. It's been on my list for a while and now that I've seen it, I'm kicking myself for not watching it in the theater on the big screen. What was I thinking? Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep in the same movie! How could it be anything but AWESOME...and it was! Seymour never lets me down and Meryl is an absolute chameleon! There was a great dilemma at the end and it made me really think about the gossip machine and how it can profoundly affect life. Run! Don't walk to rent this one.

Have been laying low again today although my head is much better. I have a supper date and really wanted to go so I've been taking it' easy. I ran out and got the paper and spent the morning with that. I must be getting some of my brain function back because I completed the Time's Crossword and the Sudoko...in ink....thank you very much. Then I made a nice stuffed pork chop, baked potato and squash lunch, did the dishes and settled in with Seymour and Meryl. Called Mum and Grammie afterward to catch up on the week and now am headed out to supper. Very relaxing Sunday. Hope yours is going great too!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Layin' Low

I have a humdinger of a headache today. Last night it was a migraine but it's backed off some and I can see out of my right eye again. Now I'm just left with a steady thump and foggy brain. I don't get them very often for which I'm eternally grateful!

Today is a stay at home day for the most part. I had plans to go to numerous craft shows and yarn shops with friends but begged off. Then I was supposed to go to game night in Stoughton tonight but called I cancelled that too. I can't imagine driving to Stoughton in the dark with this head! I did go get a few groceries and took some stuff to the library and that was more than enough movement for one day.

I got the new Diana Gabaldon book from the library today. I've been waiting for it for months, but can neither see nor comprehend it in my present state. Irony. Bleh. Can't even work on my knitting! The application for comprehending small print and fine details is still rebooting.

National Geographic channel is showing back to back Explorer shows so I am listening to that in the background: all my favorite topics-bog mummies, buried cities and what ever happened to Princess Anastasia. Later I think I'll bake a pecan pie to go with my baked beans, fresh bread and potato salad supper and then shuttle most of the rest of it up to Hef and Mike. I've had a hankerin' for pie but don't need a whole one sitting around my house! Just a slice or two thank you! It's nice to have neighbors who appreciate baked goods!

I think I'll go try a nap and see if I can get it together enough to be able to knit after supper. Hope you all are having a great Saturday!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Bullet Point Friday

Today Molly Bee...

  • Remembered in the nick of time to write something here today. Nablopomo...you're doing it right!
  • 's computer is having issues. It's like it has a uncannily strong desire to doom my Nablopomo mission.Oh Yeah? Well, sabotage....you're doing it wrong! Ha!
  • had it out with the cable company mentioned a few posts earlier. Quel Suprise! That $30 service charge hadn't been deleted from my account like I was promised it would be.
  • is amazed and amused that said cable company has an unblemished record of not completing one single task or service that they said they would correctly.
  • went to see 'Couples' Retreat'. I loves me some Vince Vaughn!
  • had a Slurpee and a small popcorn for supper...kicking back after a long week...you're doing it right!
  • taking a hot bath and a cup of tea and hitting the hay early.

G'NIGHT AND SWEET DREAMS ALL!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Recipe Bomb

I love to try out new recipes and the majority of them are pretty successful. The most successful ones I post over on my kitchen site. I never write about the duds. But recently I made the dudiest of the duds and so I'm posting a warning to prevent any of you from replicating the disaster. Last year I learned that you can mix a can of pumpkin with a cake mix and it makes a pretty good low fat/higher fiber cake. So I says to myself says I...why not brownies?

They mixed together alright. They looked ok when I spread them in the pan. It even smelled right baking. However when I went to get them out of the oven, the top was dull not glossy, they had barely risen at all, and you know how they pull away from the sides of the pan when they're done? These looked like they were horribly afraid of the sides and had run as far as they could from them. There was a half inch gap all the way around. I cooked them 10 minutes less than the brownie mix said so they weren't over done. They weren't burnt. So I let them cook and lulled myself into the belief that looks can be deceiving and decided to I'd try them later.

Oh. My. God. They didn't taste like pumpkin (which they weren't supposed to so that was good) but they certainly didn't even taste like chocolate either. By far the worst part was that they had the consistancy of a Good Year retread! You've never seen such a wicked mess of crap in your life. Ben wasn't even interested, and he's been known to eat poo on occassion. I dumped the whole mess in the trash and thanked my lucky starts that I hadn't lost the pan along with the experiment.

So here's the lesson. You can mix pumpkin with a cake mix with great results. You can mix diet pop with a cake mix with great results. And although you CAN mix pumpkin with a brownie mix, for the love of G-d people, it is not in anyone's best interest to do so. Once again, I perform these experiments so you don't have to!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

BSJ X 2

Cousin Crystal (she of the cool Halloween skeleton shirt a couple of posts back) delivered her beautiful boys, Hayden and Zachary, the Monday after Halloween. Told you she held out just so she could wear the cool shirt! Both boys were about a month early, not unusual for twins, but weighed over 6 # each! Way to go kiddos! I finished the second Baby Surprise Jacket last night and will get them in the mail to the boys tomorrow. I probably won't make the pattern again. Although it's cool the way it folds up to make a sweater, I'm not a fan of the clunky increases and seams on the front. I'm sure the boys will look adorable in them clunky seams or not though!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fowl Language


(Click to bigify-more detail)
This is the hugantic herd of turkeys that lives across the street from my house. They are almost always out there. I've grown very fond of them over the past months and have even named some of them. See the one on the far right? Her name is 'Giblets'. And the one next to her? 'Cutlets'. And that big tom right about in the middle? He's from a french speaking province in Canada. His name is 'Monsieur En Croute'.... They are pretty nonchalant for T minus 15 days and counting! Just sayin'.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Cookin' On All Four Burners

Nablopomo # 9

Today was a blur. Was at work before 7:30 and didn't leave until 5:45. Don't think I stopped moving once all day but I sure did cook through the pile of work on my desk. I will be working from home the next couple of days. I was supposed to find an Executive Assistant type seminar to attend for continuing education, but nothing of any note has been given in the area, so I am taking the next couple of days to do some on line work; lots of tutorials, tips and tricks etc that I've been saving until I 'had time'. That hasn 't happened so I'm taking the time and having a couple of do-it-yourself seminar days! I learn best on my own anyway.

Came home and used my new birthday skillet to make a huge batch of Pasta Fagiolo! It's been simmering on the stove for an hour and my house smells SO GOOD. I think I'll ask Mike and Hef down for supper. I've got a loaf of crusty bread to bake up and some fresh Parmesan to grate over it. If it sounds good, I'm posting the recipe on Molly Bee's Kitchen. Delicioso!

Off to work more on my BSJ. I think I'll be able to finish it tonight and put the buttons on tomorrow night and have both of them in the mail by the end of the week. Then it's on to my secret Thanksgiving project for Sweet Willie Browne! G'night all!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

I Broke My Dog

Nablopomo Day 8!

Mr Ben and I just got back from a rousing game of fetch....er... that is to say....a rousing game of 'You Throw The Ball And I'll Go Get It, Bring It Half Way Back And Then Head Off Into The Tall Grass With It Causing You To Chase Me, Catch Me and Call Me A Bad Dog And Making Me To Feel Bad Until You Throw The Ball The Next Time And I Bring It Half Way Back Only To Head Into The Tall Grass Again'. Lather, rinse repeat as needed. He's now laying on the floor wheezing like a bagpipe, but I suspect he'll re inflate in time for supper. It's so hard to be a big doggie.

Did a whole bunch of not much today primarily focusing on procrastinating about finishing the BSJ. Why is it that when you HAVE TO (self-imposed HAVE TO or course but still...) knit something, you don't want to, but when you should be doing something else, all you want to do is knit. I am my own worst enemy.

Off to order the new John Irving Book from the library before you can! Neener Neener! Have a good night!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Queen of Productivity

Went to Knit Night at The Ear last night. Did everything I could to talk myself out of it but the lure of my buds and Chocovine was too great. I didn't stay a whole long time, it was too crowded and hot, but they lifted my spirits immensely in the short time I was there. They are the best. I'm a lucky girl.
I even managed to finish these:
I like this Trek yarn. If I can't decide what color sock to wear, I'll pick these since they seem to have ALL of the colors in them!
With a little help from my friends, I am finally beginning to crawl out of my self-imposed funk today. Ben and I got up at 5:45 and took a walk for about an hour and fifteen minutes. We watched the sun rise and enjoyed the warm temps. I even had to take my fleece jacket off and tie it around my waist. Ben didn't take his coat off but he did pee on a lot of things to stay cool.

Came home and had some yogurt and fresh berries for breakfast, stripped my bed and loaded the linens into the washer, cleaned out the fridge and did the dishes. Then it was off to Wal-Mart to pick up a whole list of things. I HATE to go there so I tend to wait until the list is loooooong. It was pretty quiet today so it wasn't that bad. Got a nice deep dish frying pan, and a CD player so I can listen to my hypnosis CDs again, with b-day money from my Mum. Thanks Mum!
I stopped at Brennan's Market on the way home and picked up some aged cheddar and honey. Tonight is earmarked for my favorite comfort food; Molly Bees Special Toasted Cheese. (That's right Michael! I said 'Toasted Cheese rather than 'Grilled Cheese' ...'cause that's how I roll! If you want to try it here's what you do:
Take good bread (not packaged fog like Wonder Bread) Put in a slice of aged cheddar, and several THINLY sliced apples slices (with or without the peel-I do with). Drizzle with honey. Coat the outside with butter or margarine and put it in the 400° toaster oven for about 8 minutes. Take it out and sprinkle 2 tsp of Parmesan cheese on each side and out back in for another 6 minutes or so. YUM!
At any rate, I digress. I'm going to meet a friend for lunch later at Quivey's and then my afternoon will be devoted to getting me and big doggie outside to enjoy the last of the decent weather. Tonight will be finishing my Baby Surprise Jacket-over half done and watching The United State of Tara on Showtime On Demand. That show is hysterical! Anyway, that's all the news that's fit to print for now. So far I've reached my Nablopomo goal!

Friday, November 06, 2009

Thankful

On days like this when I feel less than wonderful and it seems like the whole world is coming apart at the seams, I try to concentrate on the little things. There's so much to be thankful for:
  • My family who loves me no matter what
  • My doggie who is a snuggler-most-excellent
  • My cozy nest
  • A hot pot of rose tea and a warm blanket
  • A wonderful book
  • Knitting
  • My journal
And the knowledge that life has a way of working itself out and that tomorrow will be better

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Guest Blogger: Ben-the-Dog

My Mommy is sick tonight. She has a bad tummy and feels yucky. She says it must be from eating healthier and says she is going back to eating cheeseburgers tout de suite. I don't know what that means. I, Ben-the-Dog, find cheeseburgers quite savory don't you? They are not too sweet at all. Anyway. She asked me, Ben-the-Dog, to write a blog guest post since she joined Nablopomo (National Blog Posting Month) and is supposed to make some sort of entry every day for the month of November. So I sat down and thought about it...

(This is me thinking about it.)

but couldn't think of anything to write so I, Ben-the-Dog, will just issue an invitation to all of you to come over and see my toys and maybe throw the ball. If you throw it, I, Ben-the-Dog will go get it and if you throw it I, Ben-the-Dog, will go get it, and if you throw it I, Ben-the-Dog will go get it, and if you throw it I, Ben-the-Dog will go get it....ahem...times infinity! You get the picture. And if we are extra cute, Mommy will give us cookies. Please come by soon.
Love,

Ben-the-Dog

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Beluga Babble

I went to Chicago with friends yesterday. It was a gorgeous day. The sky and the lake were both so clear and blue it hurt your eyes! Since I was on his turf, I looked around for Franklin. Obviously I didn't look everywhere, but I covered quite a lot of ground and never find him. He's a pretty good hider that Franklin.

If you happen to see someone who looks like me on the National News some night soon, it IS me! I got interviewed by an Associated Press camera man about the new holiday airfare taxes while we were dropping a friend off at O'Hare. I had a lot of opinions on the subject, especially that $25/bag fee. I thought it was funny that he chose me, especially since I wasn't even traveling. If you see me on the News in regards to grand theft auto, kidnapping or generally running amok in some other way, please disregard. That whole business has been cleared up now.

The highlight of the trip was a visit to the Shedd Aquarium. What a beautiful facility.
We saw some amazing animals, including this flirty guy. Handsome devil isn't he?
And this one. I have always been fascinated by sea dragons. They had two varieties at the aquarium. This one is the graceful leafy kind. They don't even look real. I think they are really from outer space and that Torchwood should be called immediatly. Anyone have John Barrowman's telephone number?

(Click to biggify. You won't be sorry!)
Interestingly enough, while there, I discovered yet ANOTHER superpower! I KNOW! I'm collecting them all right? I was using my 'all-purpose animal noise' (make fish lips and suck in making a high pitched squeaky noise and punctuate it with all kinds of 'here babys' and ' you're just the cootest widdles' you can throw in there) when this little lady came scooting right over and looked at me and started making all kinds of whistles, clicks and burps. She'd turn her head this way and look at me with one eye...


Then she'd swim off a little, come right back over and turn her head back the other way and scope me out with the other eye...

Then she'd toss her head back and squeal...
It was then that I realized, that all of these years, I have been speaking fluent Beluga and didn't even know it! I'm a bonified savant! I suspected that I was speaking Humpback once, but it was actually the man standing next to me on the boat. Anyway, she stuck around and gabbed with me for ten full minutes before she had mined all of the day's events out of me and swam away. It was so surreal. It was one of those special moments that you'll always remember.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Show Me The Money!

When my dad passed away 10 years ago, I inherited a piggy bank that he had. It's made out of an old postal/mail box combination door...you know...the ones with the dial with letters and you turn it this way and that, stopping on letters or in between them to open it up? [It's a wonder anyone could access their mail at all in 'the old days'. It's much like trying to remember the password on my Yahoo account now a days; trial and error. ] Someone had mounted the door on the front of a wooden box and put a coin slot in the top. It's a handsome thing and it reminds me of my dad. It's one of my few prized possessions.

Whenever I have change I put it in and then on November 1st (his birthday) and April 1 (the day he passed) I take it down to the bank and cash in all of the coins for 'real money'. November 1 was a Sunday this year, so I took it to the bank today. I came away $86.90 'richer'. It always feels like it's 'free money' or that I won it or something, even though I have been the one saving it all along. I think Dad would get a kick out of that!

Normally I put 'my winnings' in savings, but as luck would have it I am having a 'day vacation' in Chicago soon so will take it along for a little extra spending money. Daddy would approve. Gosh I miss him!

I love you Daddy! Happy Birthday!

Costumes! Costumes! Costumes!

I hope Cousin Crystal doesn't mind me pinching this picture from her blog. I think this is the coolest costume ever! She is expecting twin sons any minute now. In fact rumor has it that she hasn't delivered before now just so she could wear this for Halloween! I don't blame her! Too cute!

Our office party was decidedly dark this year.....The grim reaper and Draculetta showed up...

Genghis Kahn was in the house

Dave didn't wear a costume. He just came as...well... Dave.

And even I came as the scariest think I could think of....my driver's license photo!

I won the prize for the funniest costume but believe me, my driver's license photo IS NOT funny! Hope you all had a Happy Halloween!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Halloween Squirrelannigans

I spent four hours carving those pumpkins. So imagine my dismay when I found this yesterday. I must admit I threw a wee bit of a hissy fit. One of my neighbor hooligans has sliced off the Celtic knot and stolen the lid of my time-consuming creation! I love my neighbors. What had I done to tick one of them off? What would be next? Keying my car? Mugging me in the garage? Oh the angst!

A little later, as I was moping about it on the sofa, Bentley got really enthused about something outside. I got up to look and found THIS:


A HA! The culprit! And upon closer examination...

Oh No! A dingo ate my baby! Uh...well... a squirrel ate my pumpkin puppy! It's just as traumatic! I banged on the door and ran the little varmint off, only to feel bad about it when I found him trying to pay for his Halloween feast with squirrel currency later on. As I write this there are about a half a dozen more in there. I think he's payed handsomely and left a big tip.

At least they were both intact and lit for Knit Night at my house on Friday night. We had a great time knitting and feasting....

Snug as drunken little bugs while the chill October wind blew outside. Did I mention that we discovered the joys of Chocovine? Oh. My. God. I highly recommend it, but not if you are knitting anything of any consequence. I had to rip out about 18 inches of sock foot the next day. I wonder how long it would have been if they had stayed later? I probably would have run out of yarn eventually but still. It's a good thing we wrapped up a little after midnight!