Friday, February 29, 2008

monster potholes of death

Have you driven around town lately?
i bring this up because in the last few days I've really noticed how bad the potholes in my neighborhood are.
I don't live in the inner city. I live in a nice subdivision in the metro area.
I don't figure that they could be worse downtown. Well, they probably could, but I'm really not trying to exaggerate. These suckers are huge!
I was driving down Haggerty on an innocent jaunt to Target when I first met the gauntlet of potholes. They are  strategically placed so as to offer the commuter the most possible chances to nailing at least one, if not more than one. It's impossible to swerve away from them. If you zig left, there's another one. Zag right, ditto. don't drive too close to the curb, because it's eroding faster the polar ice caps. (do they erode? I don't know.)
I drive a big ol' mean Hummer and I'm surprised I haven't lost a tire. I hit one on my way home, and I swear I was air borne for 3 seconds. How the rest of the general population not driving cars with giant tires are surviving, I don't know.
Then to top it off, it's snowing again today. Which just hides the potholes. A nice little surprise is waiting for you, just below the surface! 3-5" more. Whatever. All I know is that it's wet and sloppy and I washed my car yesterday. Naturally.
Happy leap day!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

note to self #356

It is not advisable nor is it admirable to eat your weight in girl scout cookies. 
Thin mints are not your friends. 
Peanut Butter Patties, as tasty as they are, won't make you popular. 
Thanks A Lots can't return your love.
They are merely cookies. Delicious little morsels made from sugar, flour, eggs & whatnot. 
Don't let them tempt you into polishing off an entire box.
Leftover cookies are not lonely.
You may return to your regularly scheduled breakdown.

cookie day

cookie day, originally uploaded by dogglips2.

here is a glimpse of what cookie day is all about.
There are 2 semis to take care of all the cookie orders in our area. That is a lot of cookies. I would attempt the math, but I think my head would explode. There is a lovely group of teamsters who load the boxes into your car. Which is a good thing, because there's NO WAY I could get 75 cases into my car. It's like an intricate jigsaw puzzle, but they got every last case in there.
Then I bring the cookies home and lug them into the house, or this time, the garage. I figured why bring them all the way in, when I would just have to carry them out again? And why did it take me 4 years to figure this out?
Next, I sort them into the girls' orders. I count and double count, and hope that there are as many boxes of cookies as there are supposed to be. Usually this works.
The moms & girls pick up their cookies. Everyone is happy.
And then I get to rest.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

here we go again...

I guess the groundhog saw his shadow. Is winter ever going to end? Today's snow was definitely pretty, if unnecessary. It was heavy and wet and a pain to snow blow. The upside is that it was warm enough to do it in just my sweatshirt. Gotta love that!

The cookie booth was going well when we left. I was alone for about a half an hour. You get the strangest looks, and men for some reason feel the need to comment That I'm too old to be a girl scout. Whatever!
Tomorrow is the big time cookie day. wish me luck!

Monday, February 25, 2008

super exciting stuff

Not working has it's benefits. I get to do exciting things all day, like wash & sort out the utensil drawer. I know, you're jealous.
I also get to do things like meet a friend for coffee & knitting. I even initiated the meeting, which is just so not me. I find myself doing a lot of things lately that are not me, just so that I don't go crazy with boredom. I'm not bored a lot. My sister-in-law described me as
'a self contained unit', which I choose to interpret as 'self-entertaining'. I've always been good at entertaining myself, whether it's by reading, knitting, scrapping, watching tv, surfing the web. I pass the time. Sometimes too much of it.

Here's my progress so far on the baby blanket. I just started decreasing. It might be a little on the smallish side, but will be big enough to cover up in the stroller or car seat. I'm going to add a cool blue border when I'm all finished. It's the softest blanket ever. The yarn is called 'pj's', so you know it's cozy. It sheds a ton though, and after coffee I got up and was covered in fuzz balls. Hopefully when I wash it, it will stop with the shedding. We can't have people thinking the baby has a condition.

I'm annoyed to hear that we have a major storm on the way tonight and thru the day tomorrow. We have our girl scout cookie booth tomorrow, and it's going to suck if the weather is bad. I can see us selling 8 boxes of cookies, and standing around the rest of the time.
First thing Wednesday morning I'm picking up the 75 cases of cookies that were pre-ordered. I then sort them into orders, and hopefully everyone comes to pick them up. This year I think I'm going to unload them & sort them in the garage, especially if we get all the snow. Lugging them in the house & then back out again blows. I don't need all that muck tracked into my house either. Ick.
Until later!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

three to see

My three favorite movies I have seen this year, by coincedence, were all seen this past week. Funny how that works sometimes! I am pretty easy to please entertainment wise, and try to find something enjoyable in all flicks. These movies made it easy.

Once Is about a street musician who wants to be something more, and a woman he meets who helps him realize his dream. It is a lovely movie, with an awesome soundtrack that I immediately downloaded. Then I watched it again.

Waitress is a movie I have been wanting to see for a long time. I love Keri Russell, so I usually try to catch whatever she is in. I was almost scared to see this movie... I wanted it to be really good. And it was. I could watch this over and over.

Juno got me into the theater by myself for the first time ever! I loved Ellen Page. I think Diablo Cody rocks. Allison Janney & Jason Bateman were perfect. And I now have a crush on Michael Cera. Between Juno & Superbad-he rocks my world. Way not in my age group, but I dig him.

I'm so excited for the Academy Awards tonight. I didn't see all of the movies. Not anywhere close, even. But I did see many of the nominated performances. I like surprises, although it sounds like many of the awards are locked in. It'll still be good.

We worked for 6+ hours in the basement yesterday. One thing led to another which led to another, and before you know it we have ceiling tiles pulled down and everything emptied from the furnace room. It's more of a mess than when we started. But it's manageable now, and I can do it by myself. No more heavy lifting. Well, for now anyway. My reward is extreme soreness all over every inch of my body. I didn't move much today.
Good Sunday to ya!

Saturday, February 23, 2008


I typed a long and carefully worded post yesterday and it disappeared into the bloggosphere somehow. I am very aggravated about the whole thing. 
And just for fun my fingers don't want to work this morning. That entire first sentence took three tries and many spelling corrections to complete. I think I have dyslexia of the digits.
I will try again later!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

my house stinks!

The biggest downside of snowmobiling as far as I can tell
is the smell. 
My entire house smells like gasoline & exhaust. I have washed everything they took (because the smell is even on the things they didn't wear) except their boots, and I can still smell it.
I've sprayed Lysol all over, and I can still smell it.
I threw the duffel bags outside (after spraying them) and I can still smell it.

I finished my wraparound cardigan on Saturday. It's beautiful but not fussy. It's wooly. It fits! I still have to block it (which means that I wash it and dry flat, tugging it into perfect shape and it magically stays that way.) That will fix the rolled bottom, which right now is rolled about 3 inches up my belly. Not attractive.
I am so proud of myself! I actually made something that I would be proud to wear that is bigger than a scarf. I wasn't sure I would ever get to this point. It's cool.
this is the front tie. pretty, huh!
the entire cardi. The color is a little off here. It's really rusty and nice.
I didn't work in the basement anymore today because my back is sore from all the lifting and shit I did yesterday. Back at it tomorrow. I have big plans.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

almost home...

The family is on the way home... they should be here any minute.
I've missed them. I kinda don't know what to do with myself without them here.
I've been a busy beaver today, cleaning the house up, doing laundry. I even started a massive house project, which involves starting in the closet of my scrap room. The one place in the house that's never seen by anyone (naturally) is where a lot of junk gets stored. Plenty of empty boxes, gift bags, tissue paper, & bins upon bins of stuff. It's all pulled out, and most of it is going to be donated. I don't need to keep it all forever.
It's a sucky job though.
here's a fun pic... it's a stuffed monstery guy named Linkter. I made him for my nephew Luke. He turned out so cute :)
Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 18, 2008

they're off!

here's a quick pic of the kids right before they set off to go snowmobiling. Too bad they don't have their helmets on...Bart texted me to say it was cold but they were having fun.
I've been doing lots of things... napping, reading, knitting, scrapping (4 pages!!) & watching movies. Renting movies on iTunes is very convenient. If only they had a wider selection.
Happy Prez's day!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

quiet on the homefront

That screaming sound you hear inside your head is real.
It's Bart, trapped in a motel room in Gaylord with his dad & our two kids.

I was going to write a long post about my 3 day home-alone vacation, about the utter quietness, about doing nothing, and my cell phone just rang.
The plan was to snowmobile for 2 days, come home on Tuesday. This was something that was going to be a lasting memory for Em & Ev, and a way to spend time with their dad & grandpa doing something he loves. Something he has always wanted them to do with him. Something that until recently, was unthinkable.
They left in the midst of a huge rainstorm/ warm up. The start of the trip was not a good omen, as Fred's truck & trailer got stuck on the ice trying to turn around.
They've arrived, and the news is bleak. They aren't riding's raining up north. The motel they are staying at, a "good guy" place according to my FIL is your basic 2 full sized beds dump. Tiny. Old. The better rooms are up a flight of ice covered stairs, so therefore inaccessable. Bart made cocoa for the kids and Emma burned her tongue. It's only a matter of time before someone loses it.
Funny, that I had plans in my head of how this trip was going to go. Of how much fun they would have, all the stories of riding and pictures of them in their suits. And now I'm just bummed. I don't know that there is any part of this trip that will be salvageable, and it just makes me sad. And frustrated.

Friday, February 15, 2008

I got my baby back baby back baby back

I am happy to report that my baby is back home safe & sound
after spending the day at the Genius Bar yesterday.
A lovely boy named Zack helped to restore my photos and my dignity.
We aren't sure what the problem was, but he ended up taking everything off the hard drive and reinstalling a new iPhoto library.
I am overwhelmed with gratitude
and work to do. Many photos were duplicated
and I lost my categories, so I have to start from scratch.
There are 10,000 photos.
But I am glad to have them there.
I guess we all knw what I will be doing for the next month!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

only mostly dead, I hope

I sort of 
kind of 
killed my laptop.
It was totally on accident and probably fixable by the guys/girls at the genius bar
where I will be at 9:59 tomorrow morning to have them fix it.
I have complete faith in their abilities
to recover my nearly 8,000 photos 
and get me back online.
Total faith.
(whispered with crossed fingers)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

how to keep warm

The key to staying warm in the bitter cold is layers.
Lots and lots of layers.

layer one: the sweatshirt layer. A hoodie is my personal choice.
layer two: the knitting layer. I have chosen a nice wool sweater for this layer.
layer three: the feline layer. The fluffier the better. Mine is very plush.
layer four: the cozy pants layer. For this example I have chosen Curious George.
layer five: the warm sock layer. Thick and wooly.
Combine all layers, sit back and enjoy the toasty warmness.
Of course, you may need to adjust your layers. My feline layer is warmer and rounder than most, providing me with extra warming.
My feline layer is also good at providing entertainment. At this moment he is trying to chew the knitting layer.
The benefit of layering is that you can remove layers as needed and still remain warm. 
I think it's time to remove my feline layer...

Monday, February 11, 2008

munKee love

I finished Emma's monkey last night, and he turned out so cute!
I totally did this freeform. No pattern. Just using the little bits of knowledge I have accrued so far in knitting toys (which is not much). This morning I decided that I didn't like the hands & feet I knit, so they got the axe.
Here is munKee hanging out in the kitchen.
Here is a shot of his cheeky buns, complete with lil' heart. I was gonna put it on front but it would have been somewhere in the middle of his body. So in the back it went.
He found a little sunbeam and is sunbathing.
The yarn was a pain in the rear to work with, but also forgiving. It hides a multitude of sins, and bad stitches. So I guess it's good for toys.

It's still freezing butt cold here. This morning the thermostat on the car read -1. Eek. That's cold. I was a little surprised the kids had school today. Glad, but surprised.
I'm making brats & red cabbage for dinner, and the whole house smells like apple cider vinegar. Tart & sweet. Yum. It looks so colorful in my lime green dutch oven.
Well, that's all the news that's exciting around here. Woo-hoo.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

What to do?

What do you do when it's in the neighborhood of -20* on a Sunday?
If you are Child A, you give up and fall asleep on the floor for 3 hours (and counting...)
If you are Child B, you convince your Dad that it's a good idea to throw your new football in the living room, since it's too cold to go outside. And a day without football isn't a day worth living. And because your mom sucks and won't buy you football gloves. Boo  hoo.
If you are the dog, you bark loudly at boys throwing the ball in the house, and try to chase it down, in case it decides to attack a family member. You never know when this might happen.
If you are the mom, you quickly insert your iPod ear buds and turn them up loud, so that you can pretend you are home alone, enjoying a peaceful afternoon. It helps if you can go into another room.
If you are the mom you might also get the urge to go crazy and channel your inner Torm and clean things you don't normally bother with, like the stovetop and the refrigerator. If you are really lucky, the urge will pass quickly before you do too much work. 

Stay warm out there!!

Friday, February 8, 2008

note to self

Note to self #2,146

Don't wait until Februry 8th to look for new snow boots. Not unless you want to drive to 6 stores and walk out frustrated. The only boots you will find will be tiny or pink. Trust me on this.
While you're at it, don't expect to find snow pants either. The only store that has them is Dick's, and they will either be adult sized, or $80.00.
Check at least once a week to make sure current boots/snow pants fit, because evidently your children grow extra in the winter months.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

bubbly toes

The problem with not being able to go to sleep
is not being able to wake up the next day.
With all the various thoughts I had zooming thru my head last night, this was the only thing I managed to get accomplished all day:
Seriously, I need better goals.
Did I whip up a fancy and gourmet meal for my family? Non. I am making mac & cheese & corn dogs. The great American meal. Bart & I will be having leftover pot roast ala PW.
And I have to mention that I am excited as a pig in mud that Survivor & Lost are all new tonight! Will the excitement carry over to Lipstick Jungle? We'll see, muchachas. All I know is that I love me some 'stranded' non-outdoorsy types.

1:02 a.m.

Sitting in the dark in my family room while everyone else sleeps.
Could be the fact that I slept in until 10:30. Could be the M&M's I ate right before bed.
Either way, I'm wide awake. With nothing to do.
I could be finishing my cardigan, which I have worked on every spare moment for the last week.
I could be reading Duma Key, of which I am halfway thru. It's good.
I could be sorting thru some pictures to put in my new frames.
I could be working on my art box.
Instead I am just sitting here, listening to Buddy snore and wondering if I will be able to wake up in the morning. Thinking about all the things I could be doing. Wanting to go to sleep.
My stepdad went home today. The house seems very quiet and empty without him here. Mom's home too. I'll talk to her tomorrow.
sweet dreams!

Monday, February 4, 2008


Today is report card day. I remember how anxious I would be on report card day, and then later when I was in high school, how anxious I would be to come home because they mailed them. Would I get to it first? Would I have some explaining to do? I was a decent student, but had my problems in certain areas (hello, trigonometry).
Lucky for me, I don't have to worry anymore. (I also don't have to try to remember my locker combination either. For that I am thankful). I also have 2 good students who are respectful, responsible and who genuinely like school.
I have to admit that I was a tiny bit worried about Evan. He has been a little moodier than normal. A little mouthier and less willing to cooperate. But his scores aren't reflecting it at all, so I'm hoping it's just a phase. Cross your fingers.
In other exciting news, My stepdad has been bunking with us since Friday night. My Mom is in Idaho, at her mother's bedside, and he can't stay alone right now. So far we haven't irritated each other to death (cross 'em again). Being a full time care-giver is sapping. I haven't done much other than just be available whenever he needs me. It's a lot like having a new baby. Except I don't have to carry him around. Thank God!

Friday, February 1, 2008

what storm???

So much for our massive amounts of snowfall.
I think we got 4 inches.
4 inches is all that stood between me and my planned out day. Sigh.

Instead of kids in school, I have kids home watching 'Blue's Clues' because nothing else is on.
Instead of an early morning trek to the airport, I will have a rush-hour trek to the airport.
Instead of peacefully sleeping in I was woken by Emma declaring "Dad says to get out of bed and blow the snow right now."
I love snow days!