Wednesday, December 23, 2009

My Grown Up Christmas List

Its the time of year when you start thinking about all of the blessings in your life and the child within starts dreaming and wishing. As a child I remember pouring over the Sears catalog, circling doll houses, model horses, and tinkertoys with enthusiasm and writing letters to Santa, assuring him that regardless of what my brother said, I really had been a good girl that year.

I remember school Christmas parties where Santa would make a grand appearance, handing out presents to each girl and boy and then patiently sit through photos with all of the children in attendance. I remember searches for the perfect tree and the styrofoam gingerbread ornaments that I loved to hang on the tree. I remember a pair of elf dolls dressed in red, green and white that my brother and I would carefully tuck onto the tree branches. I remember the sweetness of peppermint sticks in stockings and the orange that would always be tucked in the bottom....and the warmth of the woodstove while snow drifted lazily out of a gray winter sky.

As in my childhood, I find myself these last few days making another Christmas list. Not one for toys and trinkets, but one for peace, love and strength. I would wish these to my friends and family, and one big one to the world at large. I would ask for strength for my family struggling with worry. I would ask for health for those in pain. I would ask for peace for those who have lost and joy for the memories that remain. I would ask that we grow closer as a family and work together on our problems. I wish LOVE. Because long after the wrappings are torn off and tree is emptied of its bounty, love would still be there; an ongoing, eternal reminder of how much we mean to one another and how none of us are truly alone.

Let me close this with a song I love at Christmas....Here is a link to the video by Amy Grant.

My Grown Up Christmas List

Do you remember me?
I sat upon your knee
I wrote to you with childhood fantasies
Well, I'm all grown-up now
Can you still help somehow?
I'm not a child, but my heart still can dream
So here's my lifelong wish
My grown-up Christmas list
Not for myself, but for a world in need

No more lives torn apart
That wars would never start
And time would heal all hearts
Every man would have a friend
That right would always win
And love would never end
This is my grown-up Christmas list

What is this illusion called the innocence of youth?
Maybe only in that blind belief can we ever find the truth

No more lives torn apart
That wars would never start
And time would heal our hearts
Every man would have a friend
That right would always win
And love would never end
This is my grown-up Christmas list

This is my only lifelong wish
This is my grown-up Christmas list

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

2 minute update

Car: got it back on Friday (thanks for the lift teachinfourth!) and couldn't help being excited to have my wheels again. I was smart enough to wait until after I'd left the dealership to lay a kiss on it seeing as the guys were already laughing at me about running my hands along the car and saying "I am so glad to have you back in one piece" to it. The bumper is new and looks great and the car is, indeed, purring like a kitten. When its really cold out it does lug a little until it warms up more but the guys said that's not an issue and the final story they can come up with was I had ice in my gas line. I've been chastised to keep at least a half tank of gas in the car during the winter and they tossed a bottle of Heet in there for good measure.

Camera: (sigh) I've posted an ad on but don't think anything will come of it. I looked around Teach's place last night and its not there either. I have officially declared it good and lost and will start looking around for a new one to buy next year. Ten months wasn't nearly enough time but now I know I would like a camera with manual focus ability. And I did get some really amazing shots from that camera while I had it.....I just wish I still had it. Guess that will teach me to not leave expensive things in my car.

Christmas: hooray! Its nearly here! I've been making several batches of fimo dough "cookies" as ornaments and they turned out darling. I gave a set to my friend Cynthia in a clear bag tied with a ribbon and they looked like the most delicious sugar cookies...I'm happy they've turned out so well. In fact, they turned out so well that I am going to start working on them throughout next year and start selling on Etsy in the fall (when crafters start seriously thinking about Christmas). So far I've made sugar cookie stars (with bright colored bead "sprinkles"), snowflakes in blue and white icing and brown gingerbread men. I need to pick up a tree cookie cutter as well...I thought I had one but I think it was with all of those cookie cutters I gave away when I moved down here. No least cookie cutters are cheap.

Winter in general: I've enjoyed the lull we've had in snow and its actually been decently warm in the day so my fleece-lined hoodie is all I've needed. Today is supposed to be a bit of snow and rain mixed but the news last night thinks we may end up with 4-6" here in town. There is a very fine snow just starting outside but it'll be awhile before that accumulates into anything. It may be more of a White Christmas after all...of course, I DO like it when it stays off the roads!

Other in general: I am thinking I seriously am in need of a haircut. It'll probably have to be tomorrow after work though....I have too much I need to get done tonight, and I didn't grab the picture I found for her to style it like. I won't lose much hair, it'll just have some shape to it since its at that mess-stage where you want to grow it out but can't do anything with it. I also want to see James Cameron's Avatar but that will be a treat for Thursday since I believe I have the entire day off.

Oh, and I didn't get around to the Christmas cards in time. I will instead be sending out homemade Valentines cards to everyone, so keep an eye out for yours.

And last but not least I think Stephanie Meyer is now a subject I won't be writing about....I wrote a blog nearly a year ago about her final book "Breaking Dawn" and dang if I am not still getting peeved-off-fangirl comments about it. Todays was particularly scathing about her how dare I berate her beloved Stephanie (equating SM's sales figures as a sign of how exemplary her writing skills are) I can honestly say it was a surprise to see that nasty thing in my inbox and it hardly sets the mood for a good day. Shame on me for giving my critique in the first place on such a cult phenomenon (bad, bad Shawna!) You know what, I admit I have re-read the book recently and still found it to be seriously lacking. Take THAT fangirl! I understand the reason for the huge following and our feminine desires for decent fantasy without a lot of excessive Harlequin-style porn tossed in....but that still doesn't excuse a poor finish to what could have been a decent series. Dream or no dream (and fans are hot over that whole "its based on a dream" thing) I still think she let us down in the end. Yes, that really is MY opinion little fangirl and if YOU don't like it you freaking did not have to read it in the first place. Its not like I held a gun to your little teenybopper head and cram my opinion down your throat. Honestly people, its not as if my opinion really makes a difference in the world of literature anyway.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

No, its not the Christmas spirit.

Co-worker called this morning...*cough* *cough* "I won't be in today" croaked out in a horribly raspy voice. "I think it might be strep. I'll see the doctor this morning and get some antibiotics and I'll be in tomorrow. Oh, and I have a present for all of you. I just need to finish up the Christmas candies and cookies I started yesterday and I'll bring them in with me."

Strep...and still baking?

Oh yeah, lets not forget her 2 oldest are coughing so hard she pulled them out of school today and her youngest is running a fever of 103.

Lets also not forget this gal has been to the doctors at least once a week for the last month with different illnesses for herself and her kids...and gotten antibiotics each time. At some point those antibiotics have got to stop working as this is a regular routine for her family. If she's not at home she's usually taking someone to the doctor.

Those aren't Christmas Chocolate balls.....those are balls of disease. So not the way I want to start my new year, thanks just the same.

Monday, December 14, 2009

There he goes.....

As I type this my car has just gone by...strapped to the back of a tow truck.

I am car-less. Without wheels. Unable to do a darn thing about it.

Long story short....had a gal back into my car in a parking lot in the wee hours of Saturday morning. She whammed my car pretty good while I, in typical slow-mo dream fashion, watched from across the 7-11 parking lot. I got her information and then drove my car home....the damage didn't look TOO bad....though I will definately need to replace that bumper it wasn't crumpled...just gouged, chipped and cracked. It misfired on the way home but, as it was cold out I didn't really pay an excessive amount of attention to it. As I didn't need to be anywhere this weekend I stayed home Saturday and Sunday and worked on coding homework (while rotting my brain out with about a jillion movies playing in the background).

This morning was another story. Chipped a weekend's accumulation of crusted snow from my car and headed for work. Hmmmm, I thought. Must be really slick out because I am just not getting out of the driveway quick and the car felt....funny. A few blocks later it began misfiring like crazy, lugging and the check engine light was blinking madly as if its very life depended on it. By this time I was already pulling onto Center Street and halfway to work (thankfully I live a short mile from work!) so I continued on my way, hoping and praying I wasn't doing further damage to whatever was gasping its last under the hood.

My dealership agreed that driving to Bountiful was just not an option so they sent a tow truck. As we speak my car is Northbound on a tow bed on I-15.

I miss my car already.

The dealership says if its going to be a few days that they will work some way out so I can get a rental, preferably without having to get a ride up there. The wuss in me is hoping that whenever the car is done that the roads will be good....and if not, wondering if they will deliver.

Seriously, I hate the Interstate in the winter.

Still waiting to hear back from the insurance claims department about my bumper. I am not sure if the engine has anything to do with the accident since, as I said, I didn't see any crumpling, but then what do I know?

Oh, and I still haven't located my camera. I've chalked it up as good and lost, but still find myself looking around in sections of the house I have already covered several times over. Why do I think its good and lost? My trunk was open a crack at the grocery store last week and I have decided I must've hit the button in error as I headed into the store and someone took advantage of that to snag a free camera. Regardless, its my own fault and I will have to start saving to get a replacement.

I feel strange without my camera...and stranger without my car.

On the plus side, while pulling out some "essentials" from my car (since who knows how long the dealer with be playing with it) I found the sync cable for my mp3 player. I'd been looking around for that for about 2 weeks with no luck.

I guess every cloud has a silver lining in it somewhere.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

An exciting day for Astronomy

Saturn's hexagon weather system at its northern pole has been confirmed. Click here to see a video of the system in motion...its pretty cool. Science is at a loss to explain what is causing the phenomenon as Saturn has no bodies of water or landmasses to direct the windflow.

The Big Dipper has been discovered to have additional stars in just can't see them. Turns out Alcor is actually a binary star with a much fainter twin that it dances around once every 90 years. Similar story happened for Alcor's neighbor, Mizar. Mizar was discovered by a colleague of Gallileo to be a binary star...and was then discovered at a later date that both "companion" stars also had partners! Alcor and Mizar are the stars at the bend of the Dipper's handle...Alcor is the smaller binary on the top and Mizar is the larger double binary on the bottom.
Norway had a puzzle on their hands as people witness an early-morning phenomenon in the form of a spiral of light forming in the sky. Here is a video linking together several videos and stills of the spiral in motion (for best image zip ahead to 2 minutes into the video). The Russian military announced later in the morning that it was a failed rocket launch and the spiral is the rocket spinning out of control while jetting out fuel and the light of the sun (which was just ready to rise) reflecting off the spray. Here is a video simulation showing how science thinks the event was triggered. For awhile this morning the internet was abuzz with theories of wormholes, alternate realities, time travel, ufos.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


My roomie and I went to the store the other day and took my car. Cruising along, feeling the freeze, the roomie suddenly exclaims "you have SEAT WARMERS?"

It took me a moment to realize what she was talking about. Apparently, whomever was last in the passenger seat had turned the warmer on and the roomie noticed her backside growing warm as we drove down the road.

Funny, but since I have never owned a car with a bun warmer, I had completely forgotten that it came with that option.

Yesterday was so cold on my ride home that I decided to give it a whirl. Sure enough, just before I arrived home the seat was noticeably warmer. Today I once again enjoyed the toasty both on my way to work and as I drove to class.

Why couldn't I have remembered this feature on my vacation when my back was out? This would have been PERFECT for the drive home.

Regardless, the bun warmer is now my favorite feature of the moment.....

Now if only the weather was good enough to go cruising.

Another Day in the Life....

So what's been happening to me since Thanksgiving? Nothing majorly exciting I am afraid....

Lets see.....

I've somehow misplaced my camera and its driving me crazy trying to find it. Its not here at work and not in my car (which is where I had thought it was all this time). After class tonight I need to finish cleaning up my room (you can almost see my desk through all of the books, papers and accumulated junk). I can only hope that it got pushed underneath my bed since I've shuffled the desk around a few times and come up empty. So it wasn't the most expensive camera on the planet and I don't think it had a lot of pictures on it since I seem to recall clearing off the memory card in preparation for Thanksgiving.....but wasn't cheap and I really do love my camera.

I still have a bit of a cough....sorry dad, this is really hanging on.

I will (unfortunately) be spending a chunk of my weekend here in the office working on the year-end inventory. I am not looking forward to it at all since I will be spending most of the day in the warehouse and it is not heated.....freaking brrrrrr! I'll be in a sweater or two with a thermos of hot cocoa, that's for sure...between that and the cranked up music, it should make for a (hopefully) productive day. At least the temperature will be above freezing for Saturday!

Not really liking all of the snow (well, the cold really).....but dealing with it (seriously, what good is complaining going to do?) Sadly, I still get to hear the daily whining of someone I know who it seems can't wait to call me several times a day just to tell me just how hideous the weather is and how they aren't sure anyone should be out driving and what do I mean when I say I made it to work with no problems..... (sigh) this person always has something to complain about so I guess I should consider myself lucky to already know in advance what the rant of the day is likely to contain!

Speaking of cold and snow....I rescued a cat last night. No Jason, I am not going to keep it. My neighbor kicked a few kittens outside through the summer and promptly forgot all about them. My roomie and I have been feeding the neighborhood strays and both of these kittens have been amongst them. I haven't seen the older one for awhile now, but I did manage to catch the small one last night and haul it into the house. With the news stating we could see wind chill giving us a low around -20 the next few nights, I couldn't stand the thought of this little guy (or gal...I've never checked) freezing to death outside. Its so small and with its short-hair and scrawny build (no meat whatsoever on the poor thing) it just broke my heart to leave it out there. At least the other strays have long hair and thick coats. Anyway, I'll have to find a home for it in the spring as I absolutely DO NOT need another cat! It was still hiding under the couch this morning but it seemed happy (purring anyway) and why shouldn't it, I have its own dish of food and water under there with it! I am hoping it'll loosen up and become more of a "people cat" so it'll be easier to give away....goodness knows its pretty enough....inky black with pumpkin eyes.

But I digress.....

Class starts tonight for web coding....yes, I admit, I flunked a class at school. I just don't get the whole coding thing so here I am for the second time around. ANY POINTERS WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED! :d

As always, there is too much to do and not enough hours in the day to accomplish them in, so please understand if I don't blog much between now and Christmas.....addressing cards is next on the list so you should see those in your mailboxes soon.

My love to all....

Monday, November 23, 2009

The beauty of snow and the warming of hearts

Holidays can truly be a magical time of year. For me, anytime my family can get together is time to be treasured. I knew my Dad was driving down sometime this week for Thanksgiving but was thrilled to get a phone call from my brother on Saturday telling me that Dad had decided to hop in the car and drive down earlier than expected. I called Dad to see if he wanted company and all but flew to the car in my excitement to see him.

On Sunday I was able to drive to SLC to pick up my brother and sister-and-law who had flown in from New York. The drive up was uneventful as I made my way to where they were visiting with her family. By the time we climbed into the car to head back big, fluffy snowflakes were starting to drift down in lazy spirals. I love the way snow looks as it falls, blanketing everything in a clean blanket of white, but this quickly became thicker and thicker until you could hardly see the lines in the road. It got to the point where I couldn't recognise where on the trip I was and there was nothing to do except to slowly follow the tail lights of the car in front of me.
It wasn't frightening in the least (the roads weren't slick) and I was left with the strangest feeling of being held safe and secure in the warmth of my car. We talked and laughed, made comments about the wall of snow accumulating against the side of the car, and eventually came to the safe harbor of my brother's house.
Bags and blankets were snatched from the car and we entered into a home full of delicious smells, a bright and cheerful Christmas tree shining softly into the night and the warmth of hugs from the family waiting for our arrival.
Before long the snow was already melting, becoming nothing more than a brief reminder of weather to come, but the warmth inside the house continued on.....
I love the holidays.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Excuse me Mr Croissant....why is your beret on your butt?

I couldn't resist posting this necklace I found online today. Who in their weirdest mind would want to wear a croissant around their necks? And one that happens to be french and wearing his beret on what appears to be his behind?
Ah the strange things you find when you surf the web.....

Stupid girl....

I’ve been sick lately with bronchitis….so sick that I was off of work for 3 days last week and then another 3 days this week.

Yesterday was my first day back to the job. I didn’t feel fantastic, but I wasn’t going to pass out either. When I left at 4:30 pm it was with the intention of heading home, heating up some soup and then crawling into bed.

Then I glanced towards the lake.

Big mistake.

The sun was beginning to set in a wonderfully clear sky and the sunlight was gilding everything it touched in beams of golden brilliance.

I turned around and drove to the jetty with the idea of snapping a couple of shots of the sunset and then heading for home.

Yeah, right.

An hour-and-a-half later I finally got back into my car, chilled to the bone, and cranked up the heater as far as it would go.

I got some amazing shots, but spent the night coughing so hard I couldn’t sleep.

Oh well, it was still worth it.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Vacation Photos sepia

Hey everyone...I am still under the weather somewhat. I feel much better but I am still coughing up a storm and out of breath, my appetite still hasn't returned (though I am making myself eat) and I am easily exhausted . I am thankful though that the fever finally broke the other day and that the headache is mostly gone.

I am posting the next round of vacation photos from my trip to Sandpoint. I normally don't transfer my pictures into sepia but had fun experimenting with the function and ended up liking the results.

Let me know what YOU think.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ah the joys of having a cold.....

Your head literally feels like it is exploding everytime you cough, your throat is getting raw and you can't breathe. The last is the scariest for me....I can't hold my breath for 30 seconds without panicking so colds give me fits. The mild fever and chills just add to the experience.
The accountant came prepared today. She walked in through the door and handed me a bottle of Zicam, a can of Lysol and 2 Clorox antibacterial wipe packs.
So much for the ol' regimen of Vitamin C and Tylenol.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Trip Photos #1

As promised, here is the first installation of trip photos. Hope you enjoy.

Marina, Sandpoint, ID

Sandpoint, ID

Early Morning, 49 Degrees North, Chewelah, WA

Blue Creek Bridge, Blue Creek, WA

Oncoming Train, Sandpoint, ID

Brush, Bear Lake, WA

Bear Lake, WA

Aspens, Newport, WA

Barn in Addy, WA

Sisters Don't Let Sisters Borrow Digital Cameras

Why not?

Cause you end up with something like THIS that surprises you when you start scrolling through the goodies you took on your autumnal trip home.

What else can I say except I love and miss you two twits and, uh...thanks for the surprise?

Photo Journal

I have not forgotten my promise to upload some of my favorite shots from my trip to Washington/Idaho.

The problem is narrowing them down.

I took nearly 1600 shots in all, and have since managed to narrow the list down to a mere 173.
It took most of Saturday to go through that long list of images and, I admit, I wasn't ready to spend a chunk of Sunday going through them again, cropping a few, doing color corrections, etc etc.

It will probably still take awhile to narrow that list down further, however, tonight I will upload some of my absolute favorites after dinner.


Friday, October 30, 2009

When Reality Steps In......

I had a dream last night.


It was a simple sweet long kiss.

Nothing more.....nothing less.

The bad part was waking up and having my first thought be, "Dang, I'd better lay off the onions."

I should probably mention that this was thought with regret and mourning.....

Such is the life of a single girl who just happens to adore the onion.

On a high

Love this song and it pretty much sums up how I feel today. Yes, my back is still hurting and my car's bumper has yet to be looked to. I also have no real social life (outside of work and school) and live with a roommate, my three cats, her cat and two dogs in a verrrrrrrrry small house, but I am alive, the sky is gray with the delicious chill of autumn in the air and I have a wonderful family which I love dearly.

How can I not be happy when I truly have so much going for me? Its like this tune I had in my head yesterday from Morrissey where, essentially, it doesn't matter what all is going on around you and "Now My Heart is Full".

Its a nice feeling.

Duncan Sheik "On a High"

I'm on a high, I'm on a high
There's nothing more to it
We are the sea and the sky
And the blue that runs through it

And there are some who say there are
So many things I need
So I run or I fight and I crawl or I scream and I bleed I bleed, I bleed

Well it's a lie, it's a lie-don't you believe it
If you're fine, then you're fine-it's all how you see it
Oh, there will never be no conspiracy of happiness
I'm on a high, on a high There's nothing more to it

I have the sun, it's a star
Why should I refuse it?
And there are so many reasons
I could give you why I should be down
There's not enough money or time and my love
You're not around Around, around

You're alive, you're alive-what else could you give me
You are fine, you are fine-nothing's worth feeling
Oh, there never will be no conspiracy of happiness

I'm on a high, on a high
You are the sea and the sky
I'm on a high, I'm on high I'm on a high

Jack Skellington had better watch out.....

This morning St Nick came by my house....
He was driving a local elementary school bus.
I considered driving around the block to try and catch him on the other side 'cause I have some serious wishes to offer up (one of which was getting a shot of him behind the wheel!) but was going to be late for work if I did.
There's nothing like being first in line for the best prezzies! So what if it isn't officially even Halloween yet?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Blustery, Blustery Day

Gusty and the smell of rain is in the air. A bit chilly but you wouldn't guess that snow is on its way later this afternoon.

On my way to the car my bagel threatened to sail off the plate and down the street and you could have sworn that was Pooh Bear soaring past, rather than a forlorn and empty bread sack.

Wish I was out playing in it (the weather, not the bread sack....I wouldn't fit!)

For all fans of Castle or Serenity/Firefly.....if you missed last night's episode of Castle you need to watch the opening gambit of last night's Halloween episode. Hilarious nod to Nathan Fillion being our favorite Cap'n only need watch the first couple of minutes and then it is deep into this weeks mystery/

Monday, October 26, 2009

Good Timing

Here is what the weather plans for the remainder of the week.....glad I was on vacation LAST WEEK and not trying to travel!

Tonight: Partly cloudy skies this evening. Increasing clouds with periods of showers late. Low 38F. Winds S at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Tomorrow: Cloudy with rain and snow in the morning, becoming all snow in the afternoon. Cold. High 39F. Winds NW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of precip 70%. 1 to 3 inches of snow expected.

Tomorrow night: Variable clouds with snow showers. Low around 30F. Winds NNW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 60%. Snow accumulating 1 to 2 inches.

Wednesday: Variable clouds with snow showers. Cold. High 37F. Winds N at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 60%. Some snow accumulation possible.

Thursday: Snow showers possible. Highs in the upper 30s and lows in the mid 20s.

Friday: Mix of sun and clouds. Highs in the upper 30s and lows in the upper 20s.

Freaking brrrrrr......

Vacation Update

Okay everyone....I am back from my trip to Washington/Idaho (got home late Saturday evening) and still have about 8 jillion photos to go through. I had a wonderful time while I was there though the trip was not without mishap....along the way I rennovated the bumper on my car (tearing it up pretty good on a parking stop...but more on that in a later post) and then giving my back its own overhaul by throwing it out. Due to the back injury I headed home a day earlier than initially planned, and without seeing a few people that wanted to get together while I was up in "their neck of the woods".

I apologise to everyone who was left out and want to let you know that I plan to come to Washington again next fall.

It was pretty sad spending part of the trip in so much many gorgeous shots begged to be taken and take them I did. I am sure it looked perfectly ridiculous to anyone who happened to pass me who saw a camera sticking up out of the sunroof of my car, but I wasn't able to get in and out of my car a lot for a few days there.....this was the compromise my back was willing to give me. I could take all of the shots I long as I did not leave the comfort of the car or wiggle about too much. Shot after shot would find me carefully pulling to the side of the road, sticking my camera out the sun roof and then quickly checking the finished product. Oftentimes I would have to stick the camera back out again and try adjusting a few milimeters to the left or right...taking far more shots than would have been necessary had my spine only been willing to let me out of the car once and awhile.

Oh well....such is life sometimes.

Sunday was spent in a slow mosey at the grocery store (all of my food in the fridge pretty much spoiled while I was gone) and then the rest of the day found me in the living room, attached to the couch and trying to let my back have a break. I was stupid enough to think that "hey, it feels a little bit better....lets go wrestle my duffle bag out of the trunk of the car"...oh yeah, I felt like an idiot after attempting THAT manuever! Needless to say by back is still sore, but the duffle bag is unpacked. Tonight I just may try to shuffle down to the basement and wash my dirty clothes. At least the dirty laundry is already downstairs....gravity helps when you have a bag at the top of the stairs and can just give it a little toss into a conveniently placed laundry basket!

I had planned to start going through photos yesterday but couldn't suck it up enough to try to dig out my laptop and wrangle with photo transfer cables. I'll try taking a look at them tonight since I am sure due to volume alone this will be a several-day venture!

So was the trip worth it, considering injuries to not only myself but my noble chariot? Oh yeah....I am still happy I went and look forward to the trip next year (hopefully, without accident or injury this time!)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Hello Satan? Can You Hear Me Now?

My dad has the Devil's phone number on speed dial.


I was scrolling through his contact list, looking for my aunt's number when there it was in bold faced type. The Devil.

No, his number does not start with fact, in retrospect, I am pretty sure there wasn't a 6 in that number at all. When questioned dad couldn't recall where the listing came from....freaky!

Googling the number showed that Satan's cell phone was based out of was then that dad realized the number wasn't one that he had programmed in but one that a family member had entered as a joke, seeing as it belongs to the family member's ex-wife.

Hmmm.....I don't remember her with red glowing eyes or spewing out pea soup. There was that scent of patchouli about her, but it didn't seem to be covering the stink of sulfer. Guess I must not have paid enough attention.

So does this mean that I am damned by relation?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Credit Where Credit Is Due

Today is Columbus Day and I would like to take a moment to add my voice to the throng....though my ideas are hardly original here.

Why in the world do we even celebrate this holiday? Lets run with the cons first:

First of all he stumbled upon the continent rather than discovering it. He also wasn't the first to find Northern America since Leif Ericson hit Canada a good 492 years earlier (Leif was given his own holiday "Leif Ericson Day" on Oct 9th back in the 1960's but we have yet to see that become a National Holiday though he certainly fits the bill much better than good ol' Chris).

Columbus also had no idea about how far he'd have to travel to reach his actual destination in the first place (not reading known maps properly). His first response upon meeting the current occupants was "Hey look, natives! Lets turn them into slaves!" He then went on a bit of a rampage killing those who stood before him, torturing both the natives and his men in order to uphold "order" and, in essense, becoming quite the tyrant. He threatened death to the natives if they did not supply him regularly with gold (another threat was chopping off the natives' hands) and he essentially caused the extinction of several native tribes. He actually managed 4 trips to the new world, erroniously believing until he died that he was actually sailing time and again to the unknown side of Asia. He was eventually removed as governor of said colonies for being too much of a dictator....oh, and the spread of syphilis across Europe is now being accredited to Colombus and his men.

Pros: well, in spite of his lack of understanding about how far he'd actually have to sail (and some say his serious lack of sailing experience in general), somehow Columbus stumbled upon the trade winds and realized how they could facilitate a long journey...not only speeding the time to cross the ocean blue but how to effectively ride them back. He also was apparently pretty persuasive and willing to stay the course because he had to appeal the Spanish court for a few years before he finally received his royal patronage and was allowed to set sail. He also managed to (after a few failed starts) establish lasting colonies whereas the Norse abandoned Newfoundland. I chalk it up to greed rather than indominable spirit.

So why post this? Because I believe we have a false belief in heroes in this country. I remember in grade school hearing the praises of Columbus sung (that false story of everyone but Columbus believing the Earth was flat was still prominent back then) and thinking how brave he must have been, sailing towards the unknown. We have this tendancy to glorify the wrong people for all the wrong reasons because we want to believe that heroism still exists.

Real heroes build, and its not upon the blood, sweat and tears of oppression.


is making me wait.anyone remember that old jingle from Heinz ketchup...the one so thick and rich you waited eons for it to finally pour from the bottle? In the end you were so frustrated that you took a french fry, shoved it into the bottle, wiggled it around a bit and tried helping the ketchup on its tortoise-slow journey onto your plate....

That, I fear, will be the next few days for me. A slow, slow, slow decent towards my road trip this Friday. My worry is that I have no proverbial french fry to stick into the week to try and wiggle it to a close any faster.

I am stuck, bottle held upside down, shaking, shaking, shaking the bottle and waiting for that delicious drop of vacation to finally land on my plate. As one online philosopher so bluntly put it, "anticipation is just another word for unbearable waiting".

The open road becons and while I am sure it will be all the more sweeter when it finally arrives, I am still left with one conviction.........waiting sucks.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Travel Plans (and mode of travel)

Okay fans....I have already received 2 queries about my shopping adventure last weekend and I think its time to post the blog.....

Yes, I bought a car.

I wanted to take some iconic picture of my car against a backdrop of aspens blazing in autumnal golden splendor, or perhaps on the jetty at Provo Lake, with waves crashing behind....... as I haven't driven to either location yet, you are stuck with a picture of my car in the parking lot here at work.

The car is a 1991 Volkswagen Jetta, its silver, manual shift, has a sunroof and was $2000 less than I had budgeted for (I swear this car could have been made for me since it pretty much filled what little "wants" I had for a car).

Ooh yeah.....what's not to love?

So, now that the vehicle has been secured the plan is set....I head North on the 16th for Spokane, spend the night at Lucie's and spend a chunk of Saturday with mom. Then its off to Sandpoint to spend a week with Dad. From what I hear we already have an excursion planned taking the scenic trainride from Ione to Metalline Falls taking in the fall colors (I am so first ever train ride!) The rest of the week isn't really set....I will wander as I will during the day and then be home in the evenings when Dad gets home from work. I admit I am really looking forward to spending some quality time alone with him. The week will pass and then its home again, home again (jiggety jig!) on the 25th.

To everyone hoping I will stop by.....I will try my best to fit you all in, but I make no promises. Email me (or wall-to-wall me in Facebook) your phone numbers and we can try to work something out......

Love to all!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Autumnal Quotes

I couldn't resist adding a few of these lovely "turn of phrases" on my beloved Autumn.

"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf's a flower" ~Albert Camus
"Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile" ~William Cullen Bryant
"Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all" ~Stanley Horowitz
"Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree" ~Emily Bronte
"No spring or summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face" ~John Dunne
"The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves" ~John Muir
"I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house" ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne
"Come said the wind to the leaves one day, Come o're the meadows and we will play. Put on your dresses scarlet and gold, For summer is gone and the days grow cold." ~ A Children's Song from the 1880's
"Summer is already better, but the best is autumn. It is mature, reasonable and serious, it glows moderately and not frivolously ... It cools down, clears up, makes you reasonable ..." ~ Valentin
"Youth is like spring, an over praised season more remarkable forbiting winds than genial breezes. Autumn is the mellower season,and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits." ~ Samuel Butler
"Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn."~ Elizabeth Lawrence

Autumn has come.....

Autumn arrived yesterday and the world (well, mine anyway) rejoices!

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year...leaves change color, the air becomes cool and crisp, the smell of woodsmoke begins to fill the air and the days become shorter and the sunlight softer. Goodies like pumpkin bread are now in season and candy corn is available at nearly every store you care to visit.

There's more to fall though than meet the eye....or that I can describe. Its just a feeling of renewal I have every time my season rolls around. The rest of the natural world may be preparing for a long winter and hibernation, but fall is when I find I am not only the happiest, but also the most industrious and alive. I was married on the first day of fall even though it fell on a Wednesday that year (yes, I chose the date deliberately and would happily do so again should the occasion arise).

Its no wonder that my favorite holiday (Halloween) falls during this glorious season and that yellow, orange, green and brown are my favorite colors.

Fall is when I most want to be outside. I want to head out with my blanket and book, lie back and enjoy the peace that nature provides. It is a time of quiet reflection and tranquility, comfortable as a pair of old jeans. It is a season of snuggling into a bed piled high with warm quilts, sitting silent in a room watching the fire burn merrily and sipping a cup of your favorite hot drink or joining friends around a bonfire in the growing twilight, listening to the snap and spark and toasting marshmallows. It is fields of golden amber against a gloriously blue sky, and watching the spread of orange and red across the timberline, spread from the paintbrush of the Master himself. It is mornings of pearly gray fog rising over the lake and skies filled with the V of geese flying south.

Maybe I relish this season more than others because it is so fleeting. Autumn hardly seems to start and then snow is falling and winter takes over...locking us in month after month of brilliant white coldness. Spring melts so slowly into summer that the line between the two is blurred and summer slams you with an unrelenting heat where even your thoughts seem to run together in a melted slurry. Fall sweeps in, her skirts rustling as she dances in her short but sweet turn upon the stage.

I won't quote my favorite poem here as I have already done so in earlier posts but rather leave you with one from George Eliot: "Delicious autumn. My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."

Oh that I were a bird! My imagination soars on wings that swoop through hidden valleys and over forests I will never see with human eyes, never forgetting that I am just a who is utterly and completely in love with Autumn and all it brings.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

So much to do

and no more time.

I am working this weekend trying to get the shelves ready for stock that is supposed to start pouring in on Monday morning. I've been here a little over half the day and am ready to call it quits for the day and decided to go see Star Trek since its now at the cheap theater. The first time I saw it we were in the nosebleed seats up front and this movie had so much going on that I know I was missing a lot of the action.

I had thought I'd come back for an hour or two after the movie but now I don't think so. I had planned something completely different for today that fell through and I just can't seem to sufficiently motivate myself to put in a full day here when I hadn't planned to in the first place. There will still be plenty of work for me here tomorrow, that's for sure.

I opened up the boxes of shelving material I had ordered 2 weeks ago and discovered that the company had completely bungled my order. The shelving strips won't fit the type of shelf I have so I looked at the box they sent and read "C-Channel Strips" when I asked for Lozier style. Then the wire peg label holders shipped were for the flip style, not the FISH tip that I need. Wow. The only thing he got right were the 2 rolls of blue plastic that was supposed to fit in the channel strips!

Ah well....the blue plastic snaps onto the shelves without the channel strips so I just made do. I left a message for the company to call me back Monday about returning these strips since I no longer plan to use them and to have them ship me the right wire tips (can't get around using those!) Unless I demand they overnight the right material there is no way I am going to have them in time for the grand opening but it really doesn't matter....its partially my own fault anyway for not opening the box as soon as it arrived a week ago to verify the correct stuff was sent.

I will, however, stop by WalMart on my way home because I need a long-handled window squeegie so I can have our windows sparkling the morning of the "Big Day". There is so much dust and cobwebs up there now that its disgusting. Thankfully we haven't been in here long so the blinds still look clean...I'd hate to have to scrub those down!

I swear everytime I turn around I see something else I should be assembling, organizing, cleaning or stocking....I'd better get out of here before I really DO stay for the rest of the day. Honestly, I am already over 50 hours for the week and will have at least that next week.....its okay for me to not have the shop sparkling today.

Scotty....beam me up. I'm done here.

Human Calendar

Was taking a break at work today (yes, I know its Saturday but we have our Grand Opening on Wednesday so I have been working mass hours this week and will be working the whole weekend). Anyway, stumbled across this.....its interesting but I can't see having it on my would be a bit too creepy and distracting.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The road not taken

I was goofing off online, looking up people I knew on Facebook and followed a link to MySpace to check up on a gal I knew back in high school.

Oh. My. Holy. Crap.

I guess it shouldn't surprise me, considering what type of girl she was in the way back when but still.....tattoos across her cleavage.....close-ups of her rack before and after the reduction....other tats*, lip rings, etc all over the place. Foul comments back and forth between her and her "friends" about the look of her body parts and other such conversational show-stoppers. She jokes about how she looks younger than she really is but, in truth, she looks like she has been chewed up and then spit back out. The biggest shock came when I realized one of the commenters on her "new rack" was her own son!

It made me feel sick.

The sad thing is I really was impressed with this girl in high school. Probably because I was so sheltered but I thought she was tough and cool and (I hate to admit it) but she had the most colorful language I'd know up until then....I wanted to be tough and cool too. I wasn't always comfortable being with her, but I still looked up to her.

Thank goodness for naivety and the fact that I didn't really know what I was playing with....and even more thanks for not following that path myself.

It makes me grateful for who and what I am. I am far from perfect....but I like who I have grown to be over the years. ...shortcomings and all.

*disclaimer: I am not saying tattoos and lip rings make you a bad person... but who really wants to see an aging woman with multiple lip and eyebrow rings flashing her "naughty" tattoos all over the internet?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Cold Turkey: Day One

Oh you bubble and tease my taste buds with your carbonated sweetness. My morning wouldn't really start until I was swigging on a bottle of you...You were the refreshment in my constant companion.So why is it that I set you aside I suddenly cannot concentrate....I daydream of your fruity flavors and pouring that frothy goodness down my gullet. I want to keep reaching for a bottle that is no longer there.

I find myself sluggish, tired when I got a fairly good night's sleep last night. My eyes feel weighted and I feel wrung out....even though my day has just begun...
We had a wonderful relationship once....but that time is past. All that is left now is the inevitable ugliness that follows caffeine withdrawl. I'm thinking it should hit by tomorrow morning. Thank you for the serves as a reminder of just why we can't be together.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.....

Woke up this morning to a deliciously gray morning with a hint of rain in the fact we had a bit of a drizzle and I stood out by my car for a few minutes enjoying the weather change before heading in to work. I figured why not....I am not made of sugar, I won't melt and if my hair dries a little funny who cares? It was totally worth it just drinking that fresh rain-drenched earthy smell that filled the air.

Driving down to the office this morning I started thinking of all of the wonderful things the world has to offer that makes me smile and love this precious little planet all the more. I thought I'd share a few of them with you today. Yes, I am sure that I have done posts like this one before (I am much too lazy to actually check) and it probably happened the last time we got a good rain (so it makes me a bit with it!)

Oh, and not to go all Julie Andrews/Rogers and Hammerstein on you but I really DO love raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens. Not that this is such a surprise....I think the whole family knows of my love for wool, rain, cats and how I dislike gold and rather love copper and silver instead. You'll probably also know most of the other things on this list.....but then again, maybe you will learn something new.

I still love dragonflies (man do we have a ton of them down here in Utah....except for winter you can't go a day down here without seeing at least a few of them zipping around....and we are talking BIG ones....not the cutesy tiny ones I usually saw up in Washington).

I also still love to watch crows and spend nights stargazing (though the stars are limited here in town.....I love going to my friend Cynthia's house because the light polution is much less and you can see so much more. I still can't see the Milky Way from her house though so I am looking forward to heading up to Dad's in October (if he still wants me!) and enjoying those dark skies!)

Here are a few other things:

I love quotes and poetry....and enjoy finding new ones. I stumbled upon a line of Robert Frost this morning that I don't remember reading before (funny since I have his complete works!) but found delightful: "My sorrow, when she's here with me, thinks these dark days of autumn rain are beautiful as days can be; she loves the bare, withered tree; she walks the sodden pasture lane". Funny how all of my favorite poetry pieces have to do with a love for Autumn....I really need to find time to start writing poetry again.

I love squids (not as sushi) but I find the science behind them fascinating. It ties into my love of oceanography and all things underwater but everytime I find a book on the giant squid it somehow finds its way into my shopping cart or gets hauled home from the library. I've also begun collecting some "squidy stuff" from Etsy.......bad, bad Etsy! Which reminds me I need to find someone with a boat who would be willing to take me out....I haven't been out on the water in ages and miss it. Driving out to the lake and sitting around just isn't the same thing as being out ON it...bummer its too polluted to swim in.

I love the maple tree outside my work window and the pines across the street that I can look at during the day. I miss having trees around me.... my little Norfolk pine and ficus trees are growing nicely though...for now they'll have to do. I look forward to maybe moving to Oregon someday where I can be within driving distance of the ocean and be surrounded by my beloved pines. I'm thinking about taking a "mini vacation" of just a few days in the spring and driving over to the Redwoods....if Dan and Bill can let me go for a few days that is, as our busy season starts April/May.

I love gloriously blue skies in the winter when the world is covered in a blanket of white. Typically those are your colder days but I love the contrast in colors....and its funny but the sky always seems to be the most vivid shades of blue in the winter.

Wood smoke....
The bright orange of a field full of ripening pumpkins....
The promise that Halloween (undoubtedly my favorite holiday) is just around the corner....
And with that the joy of knowing fall is nearly here!....
The taste of homemade pumpkin butter spread on my toast in the morning....
"Girls Night In" at Cynthia's house....
Finding inspiration for all new crafty designs....(finding the time to make them is another thing!)