Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Einstein's Theory

Albert Einstein said: “ Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity.”

I was thinking about this quote last night when I was doing dishes. I looked at the mess in the kitchen and I looked at the clock. It was 8:45. And so I resigned myself to having to do some clean up. But I decided that I would only clean up as much as I could till 9. Then I would stop and actually try to relax a little. Well dang if I didn’t get EVERYTHING cleaned up in those 15 minutes. But my god did it seem like HOURS. So off I grumbled into the living room. See, in the morning I have two cups of coffee. The first one at about 6:30. I read my book, drink my coffee and keep an eye on the puppies. Then about 6:45 I get up, pour a second cup and sit back down to read a little. Knowing that at 7 I need to hop in the shower. That 15 minutes goes by so fast I don’t get to finish my coffee or get more than a sentence or two through my book. It’s certainly a VERY fast 15 minutes before I have to really start my day.


So anyway, this led to more thinking – always a scary thing. What else in life fits Einstein’s quote?

Short 15
Time it takes to get to freeway exit when we don’t need to get off
Long 15
Time it takes to get to same freeway exit when we need to get off and use the restroom

Short 15:
Time we wait in line when we are out for a leisurely shopping day
Long 15
Time we wait in line when we need to get tickets to a movie that is starting soon

Short 15:
Time it takes to walk to the bus stop on a beautiful spring day
Long 15
Time it takes to walk to the bus stop when it’s 15 below.

Short 15
Time it takes to get my cup of coffee at Starbucks at 3 in the afternoon
Long 15
Time it takes to get my cup of coffee at Starbucks at 6:15 in the morning

Short 15
Time it takes to get through lunch with friends
Long 15
Time it takes to get through a lunch meeting

Short 15
Time it takes to get to work
Long 15
Time it takes to get to Disneyland

Short 15
Time it takes for the casserole to cook when I’m not hungry
Long 15
Time it takes for the same casserole to cook when I’m famished

Short 15
Time it takes to get my hair cut
Long 15
Time it takes to get my teeth cleaned

Short 15
Time it takes to get a call back from the car repair shop telling me how broken my car is
Long 15
Time it takes to get a call back from the doctor with test results

Short 15
Time it takes a child to nap
Long 15
Time it takes a child to stop screaming

Short 15
Time it takes for a vacation to be over
Long 15
Time it takes a loved one to come home from a business trip

And last but not least

Short 15
Time it takes to read everyone’s blog for the day
Long 15
Time it takes anxiously awaiting for someone to post.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Loads of nothing

It would appear my Muse is on vacation. So, here's some "stuff"

Dinner tonight: Tater Tot Casserole

1 can of chicken broth
1 can of cream of chicken
1/2-1 can of milk
about 3 cups of chicken - we shred up chicken from a grocery store roasted chicken
1 cup of shredded cheese - pick your favorite flavor
1-2 cups of peas or your favorite veggie
1 bag of tater tots - I like the mini's

Mix the soups together till they are well blended - heat a little if you have to to get the cream of chicken to break up nicely
Add veggies, cheese, and chicken
Mix it all together
Cover the whole mixture with a layer of tater tots - about 2/3 of the bag

Bake at 400 for 30 minutes or so - until tater tots are nice and crispy brown


This ends up tasting like a modified version of chicken pot pie. I love it.


I mentioned that I made whole wheat cookies. The hubster didn't like them at all. He said they tasted funny. I guess I expected the "wheat" taste so I thought they were good. But I would guess kids wouldn't really like them. So, back to the drawing board. If I figure out a good way to make them I'll post the recipe.


I'm going to start investigating the feasiblity of opening my own business. We probably don't have the capital to do it but there are good business loans for women out there so I'm going to at least investigate this. I swore to myself that if I found myself job hunting again I would consider it. And do more than just wishfully ponder the idea. So, since work isn't as satisfying as it used to be I found myself checking out the job sites on the web. Which means I have to be true to my promise to myself and at least see if it's possible. The hubster asked me what sort of business I would open and I told him a girly store. I would model it off a store not too far from here in Wisconsin. Basically I would want to stock unique jewelry, clothes, shoes, accessories, gifts, books, cards, etc. Stuff to make a girl feel unique and pretty. I have a dream of where I would put it. But affording that area of the twin cities will be a whole other matter. I have sent away for a small business guide for Minnesota and once I get that the ball will get rolling. I'm kind of excited. And it would appear that the hubster will support me 100%. I think he really liked the idea when I told him I would take Tinker to work. She could be the token cute store kitty.


As it stands I may be getting to meet a fellow blog buddy this coming weekend. I am SO excited.


I'm just over half way through The Bookseller of Kabul. It's very good. I am learning a lot about Afghan culture. It's fascinating. Much like The Kite Runner it's a great story as well as an educational insight into a culture I know very little about.


The puppies are chasing each other around. They are so cute. Caleb is doing great. He's so much more social. We have a long way to go but we have come so far.............


Well, holy crap. I guess I had a lot more to say than I thought.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Midwinter and still sane

Over the past week I have been doing the happy dance around 5 pm. Why? You might ask. Well, let me tell you - it's still light out. Grant you it's not full blown bright, but it's light. I can see where I am going. Even at 5:30 now it's still relatively light. And that my friends means one thing - Spring is coming.

For those of you who don't have 8 months of winter it's probably no big deal. But up Nort' here. It's huge! And I start to get giddy. I start to fantasize about sandals, bare toes, and fun bright clothing. Of green grass and warm breezes. Of sitting out on my porch and watching my puppies play in the yard. And my kitty sleeping under the lilac bush. Oh yes dear friends, visions of warmth dance in my head.

If there is one thing you can say about Minnesotans it's that we REALLY appreciate our weather. We grumble at the severe cold. We cheer at the snow fall. And we simply basque in warm weather. As soon as it hits about 60 here it's all about being out doors. Hell, in the spring as soon as it hits 40 we are golfing and storing the parkas for the rest of the year.

You should see how goofy happy people get when the tulips and crocus make their first appearance. It's the talk of the state. Everyone has to tell everyone else that their daffodils are up. It's almost funny. Almost. But more, it's celebratory. And it brings us all together. It's probably the real reason there is such a thing as Minnesota nice. Those who suffer together play together. And just get along.

I went to a new cinema at the Rosedale mall today. I was with Other Girl J and it was my first trip there. We were having breakfast first in Panera.

Newt: So, is it easiest to just walk through the mall to get to the theater?
Other Girl J: There is no mall entrance.
Newt: What? Why the hell not, it's in the mall?
Other Girl J: It was designed by some moron from California.
Newt: Ok, so.................
Other Girl J: The only entrance is outside. And, get this, the ticket windows are also outside.
Newt: Get the hell out
Other Girl J: No, seriously, it was on the news the other night. They have to remodel the whole thing.
Newt: What DUMBASS would sign off on a design like that?
Other Girl J: Probably someone who made the assumption that NO ONE would actually come up with such an asinine design for Minnesota.
Newt: Seriously? It's outside?
Other Girl J: Yep.
Newt: Wow, what a dumb ass.

So off we go to the theater. We ran up the stairs at the back of the cinema and it lead us around to yes, the outside ticket booths. Though probably because of the publicity they are getting now has a tent like structure in front of the box office windows. And, because we have to continue with the stupid, it's a tent that only has two walls. And giant space heaters in the ceiling. But the back side is WIDE open. Good waste of energy people.

So after shivering like a mo-fo we got our tickets and ran inside. Ahhh, warmth. But that's not the end of this. No, we walked up to the super slick new concession stands with electronic price boards. But in an effort to be sooooo cool and flashy they blink on and off to change look/commercial, whatever. So as you are trying to figure out what the hell to order - how much leg,arm, first born, they will charge you for popcorn. It's like a strobe effect that blinks on and off. Basically if you don't catch the price/size/options in half a second or less you have to wait for it to blink and change. Then, if you are lucky what you were trying to read is still in the same place. It might have moved. No kidding. Someone will have a seizure one of these days. Just watch...............

Anyway, we went to see Pan's Labyrinth. Very interesting and very good movie. Only I have to warn you it has some seriously uncomfortable graphic violence. Which normally I'm okay with. But when the majority of the gore is caused by a sadistic evil man it becomes more uncomfortable and hard to watch. I must admit I looked away and closed my ears more than a few times. Overall I loved this movie. It was beautifully done. And I cared very much for the characters. It has subtitles. It's a Spanish film, and it's beautiful. What I have always loved about films with subtitles is that after the first 10 minutes or so you forget you are reading the words and feel more like you are hearing them. That has always sort of surprised me at the end of foreign films because as I walk out I remember the things the characters said. In English. I love that aspect of those films. It's always thrown me a little after the movie. I think that is why I prefer subtitles to dubbing. I can get into the film so easily. The reading becomes subconscious after a point. But when a film is dubbed I spend the whole film going nuts over the fact that voices don't match the characters look and even worse the lips don't match the words. Oh, not to mention that the actual dubbing of conversation sounds like dubbing rather than coming from the scene naturally.

I made a dessert for my co-workers Friday. I'm not sure if I mentioned it. But we had it at a party and it was really good. It's simply Granny Smith apples cut up into bite size pieces - about 1/2-1 apple per person. Cut up snickers bars. I also cut up 1 snack size bar per person. And a tub of cool whip. Mix them all together adding cool whip just until nicely coated and serve. That's it. It is so good. I got the tub of cool whip that is just slightly bigger than the small tub. I figured that way if people wanted to plop some extra on top they could. But going on the idea that people don't want their apples completely drowned in cool whip I just added enough to coat it well.

Then today, still feeling a little Betty Crocker I made whole wheat sugar cookies. I cut them out in Winnie the Pooh and Eeyore shapes. Then iced half with an orange peel drizzle. They actually came out pretty good. And since they are whole wheat they are healthy right? Right??????

Wow, I babbled about way more than I thought I would.

Hugs to everyone

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Good friends, good food, good times

I live in a madhouse. Currently with two dogs in “rehab” a whole lot of barking goes on. And they feed off each other. And that creates more chaos.

So, I have to say Thank You to DJ and Melba for managing to not run away screaming half way through the night.

We had a most fabulous dinner – take-out from Wongs. And a really good bottle of wine brought by DJ and Melba. Good talk. And then a rousing game of Apples to Apples. We declared Melba the winner by a mile after all three of our Green Apple card piles didn’t quite equal the size of hers. DJ and myself were tied for “bottom of the ol’ barrel”

Anyway, it was tons of fun. And we really enjoyed ourselves. They are an awesome couple. Very down to earth.

It was a most perfect evening.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Blogger Identity

So I was having a conversation with Girl J today. And it went like this:

Newt: Sure I’d love to go shopping with you so you can use your rewards check. That would be fun. I just can’t go tonight because Digital Janitor and Melba are coming over for dinner.
Girl J: Seriously?
Newt: Yep, isn’t that cool.
Newt: And then in less than two weeks I get to spend some time with Tis Herself.
Girl J: Seriously? How do you get to see here?
Newt: She’s making a day trip up here for a big convention. Oh, and I had a very sweet message from Tink about the book she had just finished.”
Girl J: Oh, speaking of books, how can I add Lone Sophist to my blog list?”
Newt: Oh, that’s easy……….gives directions
Girl J: Cool, thanks, she’s so sweet.
Newt: Yes she is, I like her a lot. She was one of the first blogs I ever read.
Newt: Oh, speaking of which I have to send Greymama that picture.
Girl J: Is Greymama the one with Buddy?
Newt: Yep.
Girl J: She’s so nice.

It’s like we are talking in code. And, yes, “Seriously” is her favorite word. In fact she has a shirt that says “Seriously?” on it.

Does anyone else do this? Or is it just me?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Newt thoughts

A little nighttime Voyeurism

Last night as we were driving home I was looking out the car window and into the homes of the houses with their lights on and drapes open. I am fascinated by this.

When it’s dark out I find every home with soft lights glowing inside to be inviting. You don’t have the harsh reality of daylight but rather the soft and hidden secret of night. Add to that image the snow drifts and silence of winter and I get this overwhelming feeling of welcome, of home, safety, and warmth.

I marvel at light fixtures, furniture, pictures on the wall. What makes each home individual. What decorating taste a person has. How sparse or how cluttered. I find them all beautiful. I never once looked into a home and thought it was a dump. Or not cared for. Every home had something charming. Alluring.

I can’t remember once seeing a person in all that looking. Which probably added to the magic a little. The mystery. Who lives there. Are they happy? Young? Old? Do they have children? Are they making dinner? Watching tv? Knitting? Sewing? Carving? Are they talking to a loved one on the phone? Planning a trip? Making a cup of cocoa? The more I thought about it the more I realized that from the outside I could only imagine something wonderful, something relaxing, cozy, filled with love. I didn’t think about the fact that maybe someone’s marriage was ending. That maybe they were packing up the clothes of a spouse that had died. Or that they were looking at a photo of their child, a soldier, that was killed in the war.

From where I was looking life seemed perfect. I’m not even sure where I am going with this. It was just one of those thoughts on a quiet drive home.

And on a semi-related note:

One Safe Place
How many roads you’ve traveled
How many dreams you’ve chased
Across sand and sky and gravel
Looking for one safe place

Will you make a smoother landing
When you break your fall from grace
Into the arms of understanding
Looking for one safe place

Life is trial by fire
And love’s the sweetest taste
And I pray it lifts us higher
To one safe place

How many roads we’ve traveled
How many dreams we’ve chased
Across sand and sky and gravel
Looking for one safe place

So, this was the song on the little video clip I posted. It’s beautiful.

I guess I never thought about it all boiling down to “safe”

Safe in our marriage
Safe in our career
We want our children to be safe
Our pets
We want people to drive safely home
Fly safe
Travel and be safe.

When you boil it all down “safe” is a basic need. But it’s something I never really thought about before.
With the hubster, I feel safe. I feel like he loves me deeply and that there isn’t nor will there be another person.
And feeling safe in that love makes everything else in my life possible.

The other night when I came across that video I watched it mainly because it was a song I wasn’t familiar with by a musician I adored. Then when I watched the video montage that someone had put together of 24 it really struck a few chords. I think I was in tears by the time it was done. Not because it was 24. ( Though I must admit that Kiefer appears to be a most excellent kisser.) But rather because of what the song was saying.

My favorite moments in life have all centered around feeling incredibly loved and incredibly safe.

Safe in the arms of the hubster
Safe in my home with my kitty snuggled in my arms
When I watch my puppies sleep and I know that they finally feel safe.

So, I wish for you all One Safe Place………………..

Monday, January 22, 2007

One Safe Place

I just had to share this with you. I spent a little time over the weekend playing around you tube. Now I get why people are addicted to it. I was looking up Marc Cohn and came across this. It's pretty darn good. Especially since I love his voice and well, Kiefer is just, well, he's yummy. And the two together..........

Sunday, January 21, 2007

That's our boys!

GO Dungy

Go Manning

Go Dungy


Discovering the past

In the past couple of years I have become a fan of the classic film. And I have fallen completely in love with Carey Grant, Audrey Hepburn, and so many others. This weekend we watched two of Grant's films: Night and Day which told the story of Cold Porter, and some of The Touch of Mink. Both were enjoyable. The costumes in Night and Day were spectacular. I found myself wishing to live in a time when people dressed for dinner and wore evening gowns and tuxedos to just about every event short of grocery shopping. Just think of all the shoes I would need :-)
Anyway, aside from The Simpsons, and 24 I have pretty much decided that TCM is the channel for me and it runs 24/7 in this house. Ok, so once in a while we tune in to Mythbusters. I'll admit that.

And while I am talking about tv shows I did catch two episodes this weekend of Gay, Straight, or Taken. I can only say it was interesting. It was sort of like watching a train wreck. And once I started I had to wait and see how it all turned out. I was thinking of Scott during the show. Those boys would be fine photography subjects. Let me tell you. The first show I watched the boys all took their shirts off. Um, well, yum. And they were all cute and physically fit as hell.

Ok, so aside from a guilty moment or two of trash tv I also started The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards. Page 119 and so far so wonderful. I am really enjoying this story.

And that's about it. It snowed here all day. The Bears won the playoffs! Unfortunately at blog time the Colts have one hell of an uphill battle on their hands. But my fingers are crossed. At least we don't have to spend the Super Bowl hearing about Cinderella stories and overcoming adversity. It's early in the third quarter so my fingers are crossed. Go Manning! And Tony - you coached one hell of a team!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Child of the 80's

I'm a child of the 80's. I wore leg warmers. I had a jean jacket that I decorated with buttons. I made friendship pins and twisted jelly bracelets around my wrist. I drove around New Jersey with my friends and I dreamed about dating Bruce Springsteen. Born in the USA was the coolest album. We embraced it. We dressed like Bruce. We were children of the blue collar workers and he sang to our souls. Even though some of us, like myself, didn't grow up in a traditional blue collar family, even if dad went to work in a suit and tie we were raised with good ol' down home values. Just like Bruce sang about. I look back and I realize how lucky I was to grow up in a time that was still relatively safe. No one brought a gun to school. Hell, most of the boys hunted and had guns on the rack on the back of their trucks. But that's where they stayed. It never dawned on one of them to bring it out in anger. Kids got their drivers license at 14 for farm use. We hung out in the Acme parking lot. We went to the movies. We double dated. Boys held the door open. And most of them, all the ones I knew or ever heard about knew that no meant no. There was no such thing as a drug that would get put in your drink unknowingly. There was no such thing as "really wanting it". All the girls in my class graduated. No one had a baby. People didn't kill you for your sneakers. They would help a person stranded on the side of the road. You knew all of your neighbors. And you had parties together. You could stay at the lady's house down the street if someone was late getting home. The neighbors came over to help dad chop the wood from a tree that was brought down by lightening. If someone in the neighborhood got sick we all made meals for them. Helped clean the house. Ran errands. We wore dresses that covered more than 20% of our bodies to prom. And it was not cool to wear your pants down around your knees. Footloose and Flash Dance were all the rage not gangster hate music. We said please and thank you. We respected adults. And we listened to them. Our parents would discipline us, but our teachers, our neighbors, clergy, and the guy at the video store were also allowed to. It was okay to correct our behavior. Our parents accepted all accountability for their actions and for ours. And they held us accountable for everything we did. We talked on a phone that had a chord. We wrote letters to one another - by hand. We mailed letters to friends. Sent post cards. Mom would yell from 10 houses away that dinner was ready. We played outside. We used our imagination. We rode our bikes. We did not have to grow up to fast. Or afraid. Family's were more together and focused on being together. Mom and dad worked to feed us, clothe us, and make life better, they didn't work and go into debt to out do the neighbors. No one ever dreamed of buying a new car just because the Smith's down the road did. That would be stupid.
I'm a child of the 80's and sometimes I wish I could go back there. The music was electronic, the hair was bad, and the clothes were strange, but the hearts were truer.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Things I ponder

* When I get upset I have learned but don't always follow the wisdom of 10. Count to ten, walk away for 10 minutes. Don't respond for 10 minutes to an email. And the more irritated I am by a situation the more 10's I might need to take. A simple 10 minute walk may not be long enough and I need to take another 10. Maybe I need 10 sips of my coffee. Or maybe I need to read 10 pages of my book. It doesn't matter what I do for 10, just that I do it. The consequences of not following the 10 varies but one thing doesn't, the regret that I have over not taking a 10.

At work I try very hard to be aware of taking a 10. Today, unfortunately "A" walked into the batcave while I was taking my 10. So I sort of voiced what I was trying to work out in my head. She actually helped but I think she learned more about my co-workers messed up personal life than she wanted to. So, no regrets as far as the co-worker is concerned. I managed to not jump over the cube wall and kill her. But I regret that I vented on "A".

*I'm reading a book called "Electric Michelangelo" which is about a tattoo artist in the 20's. It's a little slow but I am enjoying it. Of course I've been reading it longer than normal because I read a PJ Tracy somewhere between page 75 and 135. But now I am focused only on this book. There are a few beautiful lines in this book:

"There were times when initial introductions were so vested with something other as to confuse and distract and entrance both parties........ And only further into relationships when you knew the person better, and their place in your life became clear, if there was love, if there was hate, if there was deepness of any kind, only then did you understand that the embers of meaning had been present all along and glowing since that first moment you laid eyes on them. As if you already knew them before you came to know them. As if some rift had bent time. "

I liked this because it describes very well those times when you meet someone and your life is changed somehow. And you realize that the person had a different glow, a different aura about them all along.

And this one also made me smile:

How Rembrandt painted his portrait face from adolescence into death and wasn't afraid to show just what an ugly bugger he had been, because ugly was simply beauty in a place across the river.

So true. I love the reminder that "beauty is different just across the river." And though some of us have those days when we look in the mirror and we just want to cry we have to remember that we are beautiful, in the eyes of our spouse, our family, our friends, our children. And we have to remember that what Vogue considers beautiful or what People considers beautiful is fleeting and good for only about 15 minutes.

And lastly this one about tattoo's and the work that the artist does:

He saw through to the core of what he was doing, how he bestowed uncompromising communication upon the world, how he brought forth self. How he translated experience and identity into colour and shape. How he caught the echo of a person and engraved it on to them. How he functioned as the artistic hands of others, redundant in choosing subject maybe yet imperative in its delivery. That was the strange and impossible core of it.

The tattoos I have chosen and the one I have yet to have done are all deeply personal to me. They are part of me brought to life in shape and color and idea. I spent years trying to decide what I wanted. And each choice has come down to something about myself. Or something that acts as a reminder that I am strong and that I can and have overcome. I chose a jack rabbit to remind myself to be aware. To be alert to what life throws at me. He is my protector, always alert, always looking, listening, and prepared. I chose a fairy with daisies, because they are two things that I love. Daisies symbolize happiness to me. And a fairy symbolizes a life of curiosity, of lightness, of taking flight. I see them as strong, forever positive, forever exploring. And finally the Phoenix that I will get this coming spring. It will go over a scar on my leg from 3rd degree burns that required grafts. For me it will symbolize the strength I have found in myself when my life seemed dark. Maybe after the Phoenix there will be more but it's the last of my life symbols if you will.

*Another thing I think about or day dream about is living in a foreign country. I would pack up and leave tomorrow if the opportunity presented itself. More than anything if I could I would head off to England. Not sure why. Maybe I have watched too much Midsomer. But it's a pull that seems to get a little stronger as time goes by. The hubster and I have talked about retiring over seas. And I think more and more that it will be a reality. There is so much out there to experience.

*I'm watching Casablanca as I write this. I have never watched this from start to finish before. I really need to though. I like what I have seen so far.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Monday mumblings

We finally got some snow up here. About 8 inches at our place. Not a lot, but it’s the most we’ve seen so far. It was pretty funny to watch little Lily go outside. She was half buried in the snow. What has always baffled me is the fact that a lot of dogs hate rain and wet ground yet snow doesn’t phase them in the least. In fact they romp and play in it like crazy. All our dogs go nuts when it snows. They run around like maniacs. They get clumps of snow stuck in their fur. They get drenched. And in Lily’s case, they get buried. But they don’t mind it. However when the ground is even damp, they won’t go outside. I am VERY grateful that they like snow. It just makes me scratch my head.

While watching 24 last night I began to question at just what level do the networks think their audience IQ is at. I don’t know what the demographics are for 24 but I decided after last night that it has to be pretty young and or barely educated. I would think maybe high school completion and ages 15-29 would be their target.

Here’s why: In the show the main character memorizes some coordinates, then feeds those into a phone and gets a map of where he needs to go.
Ok, no biggie right. We all know the technology is out there. But the commercial that immediately followed that scene was one from Sprint and it began: “Do you want to be just like a federal agent and have instant global positioning on your phone?”

Wow! Goley Gee Batman can I? That would be so cool to be just like a federal agent! Are you going to sell me a black car, sunglasses, and a dark suit next? Are ya? Huh? Cause I so want to be just like a federal agent. Do I get to carry a gun too? That would be just way too cool! Can I Can I pleeeease????

So, I’m feeling a tad insulted by the Sprint commercial. And wondering just how dumb they think their audience is. Or perhaps the word should be impressionable. But then this morning, I realized that I am their perfect audience. I am dumber than a stump and I should be talked down to.

This realization hit me about 90% of the way through shoveling my walkways. And why you ask??? Well let’s start from the beginning shall we…………I got out of bed. Let the dogs out. Then wearing ONLY a Victoria’s Secret thin cotton nightshirt and a short little terry robe from the Disney Store I threw on a pair of socks, my winter boots, and gloves and went outside to shovel. Yes, in 5 degree weather with a wind chill of -7 I was out mostly “naked” shoveling snow. By the time I realized how positively stupid this activity was on my part I could no longer feel my legs. And I just kept thinking about the pot of coffee that was probably just finishing brewing. Apparently in my head a hot cup of coffee would make it all better. Why I couldn’t take the time to put on snow pants and a sweatshirt or something is beyond me. But at the time it just seemed like an ok idea. After a hot shower and more coffee my legs were still ice cold. Yep, brilliant decision on my part.


On a separate note we went to listen to the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra on Saturday night. Girl J and I have a fabulous time. We went to dinner and then to the Ordway for the concert. They called it their preview to European Tour concert. The concert started great. The first piece they did was excellent. But then they played a piece, no, that’s not the right word, they made noise for 7 minutes. It was the most irritating and ear bleeding thing I have ever heard.

Here’s a link to the piece

Yep, it was REALLY annoying. I kept waiting for the conductor to stop, turn around, and say “just kidding” only he never did. I don’t know if I have ever heard a more reserved applause.

This was followed with another relatively modern orchestral piece. Not bad, but modern composers seem to be against any sort of flowing melody. The music is more sporadic and choppy. In trying to be so different from classic composers they go in the opposite direction of melody and harmony. It’s unfortunate that some composers feel compelled to do that. I don’t care for it in the least. But that is just me.

Sunday was a mellow couch sort of day. I finished a jewelry project I had been working on. A long over due project for a friend. But to try to make up for the delay in getting it to her I made her something extra and it came out beautiful if I say so myself.

Oh, and I made a pot of split pea soup. It came out YUMMY. My mother in law recommended the mix, it’s from Manishevitz in the kosher food section of the grocery story. It’s a long plastic bag of split pea soup mix. I really liked it. Added some ham and there you go, perfect soup. If you try it, take your water down to 3 or 3 and ½ cups of water. Don’t do 5 cups. TOO much water. I like my pea soup thick, not watery.

Friday, January 12, 2007

An unexpected morning

So, here’s me on the couch with a fabulous cup of coffee, a dog or three, and the last 40 or so pages of Live Bait to finish.

First of all let me say that this really is an exceptional mystery series. Take note dear fellow readers that P.J. Tracy is a fabulous author. It starts with Monkeewrench. Live Bait is #2. I already mentioned it was a good read. Book two is an equally wonderful delight.

So, back to this morning. I’m reading along quite happily assuming that the story is pretty much wrapping up. The killer will be caught and I’ll be on to the next book. But oh no, that can’t be how we start a Friday morning now can it. Lets just say the end of Live Bait had me sobbing. Not a whole lot of books have had the tears pouring down like Niagara Falls but dang if this wasn’t one of them. The whole time I’m thinking that it’s a good thing I haven’t jumped in the shower yet and gotten the make-up on or I’d be looking like hell for the rest of the day. After the main sob fest was through I went and got in the shower, got ready, made the hubsters sandwich and then curled back up on the couch to finish the last few pages. I just HAD to finish the last few pages. Then I noticed that the hubster was locking up the pups. I have like 4 pages to go and something huge was happening. No wrap up yet, that’s for damn sure. So I closed the book and pretty much twitched all the way to the car and then all the way to work. Seriously, I have got to finish this book.

At 6:20 I’m not sure I am all that prepared to have that many emotions running around in my head. And from a book no less. Sheesh. Far to early. That’s for sure. I mean, the sun isn’t even up yet and I’m an emotional wreck.

Now, flipping around to a different topic:

Last night I made a really good dinner. I cooked whole wheat noodles up. And in a skillet I browned a chicken breast. Tossed in a bowl full of broccoli florets and then sprinkled on a packet of Knorrs Pesto, added some olive oil, mixed it all up till it was hot and the broccoli and chicken were well coated, tossed the pasta into the mix. Put that in two bowls, sprinkled on parmesan cheese and presto – healthy tasty dinner. Very easy to make and it tasted great.

Flip again:

I bury my head in the sand when it comes to the news. I found that my blood pressure benefits from doing so. Unfortunately I have buried myself deep enough that I didn’t find out till this morning that the Republican Convention will be in the cities here in 2008. Both parties were negotiating with us but alas the evil ones signed first. And to top it off the thing will be three blocks from work. Oy vey. It’s appropriate though, the convention kicks off the same day as the state fair closes. Which really does mark it as the saddest day of the year. No more deep fried food on a stick, summer is over and the evil ones come to town. Sounds about right……………

Alright, alright, not everyone is evil…………….sheesh………….

Flip again:

My friend Other Girl J is coming over for breakfast tomorrow morning. She hasn’t seen Caleb and Lily since I think the week or two after we brought them home. I am anxious to hear her impression of their progress. It will be interesting. And she’s honest too so she’ll really tell me what she thinks. No sugar coating.

Final Flip:

24 starts this weekend. So happy!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

7 Wonders

Tink asked for blog topics from her readers. Many of them were great. The first one that stuck out was this one:

What are the "seven wonders" of your life?

1. My family
I have the greatest parents a kid could ask for.
An amazing brother that I love dearly.
An Aunt and Uncle that are second parents to me.
And in-laws that have taken me in as one of their own.

2. My husband
First, I think it’s a wonder that he picked me. Or that we picked each other. Whatever it was, it was fast and it was true. We just knew. There is such a thing as love at first sight. When I look at him, I’m home. I felt that since the moment we met. He’s my best friend and I look forward to a long life together.

3. My puppies
First there was Max. My friend, my therapy, my little Bubba
Then came Sophie – The best thing the hubster and I have done together
Along came Lily – She’s our rambunctious "child" that bounces off the walls and won’t slow down
And Caleb – The one that needs the monsters cleaned out from under the bed, the closet, and out of the shadows. The hubster and I get so excited when little breakthroughs are made with him. And we always have to share with one another when we get to pet him.

4. My kitty
I was always more a dog person than a cat person. But now I’m both. Soc’s is the kitty that thinks he’s a dog. That must be why he picked me. He’s been trouble, he’s been a challenge, and he has almost gotten himself banished but he’s still with us. He’s a toddler at heart. Always into trouble. Always pushing his luck. But he is also the most affectionate cat that ever was. He’s squishy and loveable. He wants to be cuddled. He wants to be snuggled and loved.

5. My home
The Hubster bought our home less than a year before we met. It’s a beautiful older home – 1948. The walls are plaster. The open doorways are curved. And the ceilings are cove style. It’s cozy, and it’s home. It’s not just a house. It’s not a showcase, it’s eclectic, it’s messy, disorganized, and chaotic. But I love it. And I love coming home to it every night. It’s our first home, neither of us ever had anything but rental places before that. And I think no matter where we go, if we ever even go, this place will always be dear to our hearts.

As for 6 and 7, these last two took a little thought. What in my life really has been a wonder. What experiences have I had that really truly took my breath away. The first 5 were easy. But then I wanted to think back to moments in my life that really meant something to me.

6. My walk along the Rhine in Germany
Several years ago I was asked to go to Germany for work. This was going to be my first trip over seas. When I arrived it was still relatively early in the day and the advice I had been given was to stay up and get through the day no matter what. Doing so would help with the 7 hour time difference. So after a brief stop at the office they dropped me off at my hotel to unpack and relax. Then they were going to come get me later for dinner. So after checking in and unloading my stuff I went out for a walk. The company is located in Mainz. A relatively small and beautiful town. I stepped out of my hotel room and just started walking. I ended up on the promenade along the Rhine River. And as I walked along looking at everything and every one I experienced such a feeling of ecstatic joy and of peace I just didn’t want it to end. Everything held me in awe. From the cars, to the street signs, the cobbled streets, the narrow avenues, the buildings, the monuments, everything. I spent two weeks there, a wide eyed child, absorbing every image, every sensation, flavor, and feeling. I just couldn’t get over being in another part of the world. The people I worked with spoiled me rotten while I was there. They went out of their way to make it an amazing trip for me. A cruise on the Rhine, a castle tour, a day wandering through little villages, hiking, cruising the river, and riding a sky lift through vineyards. It was absolutely amazing.

7. Scuba Diving in Mexico.
I’m afraid of bodies of water. I fully admit that. I also get extremely sea sick. So I was a little surprised at myself when I went to Mexico with my girlfriends and the big activity we chose to do was scuba diving. Part of me figured that if I could scuba dive I could deal with my pending divorce. Suddenly finding myself alone and learning that everything I had thought I believed in was a lie is a bit of a hard thing to swallow. So, conquer my fear of water and I can conquer my fear of the future. Right? As it turned out, yes. We took pool side classes in basic scuba diving. Then the big event. We took a boat out to a private beach – Unfortunately I did get violently sick the whole way out there. Once we arrived they had us relax for a while. Which was good since I was green and puking. Then finally it was the big moment. We got in our gear and we jumped into the water. It was the weirdest sensation to be breathing under water. And I spent the first ten minutes or so in complete wonder of that fact. I just kept thinking, wow, I’m under water, and I’m breathing. That’s SO weird. Once I got over that it was just pure fun and amazement. I loved every second of that dive. And I came back from Mexico a different person. I was stronger, braver, and ready to face whatever my future held. Little did I know I would meet Wonder #2 less than a month later.

Life is wonderful and strange.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

A little humiliation - A little Newt photo history

So I was looking through my computer and I found this:

Yes, I had a mullet of some weird sort. But it is also me with my Aunt Betty and Uncle Phil.

And if we really want to humiliate the old Newtster:

I wore pink and lacy for prom:

But lets not forget my own version of an 80's hair band

This is the picture from my dad that started our little Pink Flamingo thing:

And yes, this is my dad vacuuming his fake grass carpet.

This is Rosie, the dog dad brought home one afternoon as a surprise. We had her for 13 years.

This is my Grandma Flo and Grandpa Tony - They are gone now and I miss them dearly.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Meme thief and a few pics

Here's a few Meme's that I stole borrowed.


By Graymama

Rules for this tag game are:
Grab the book books you are reading
Open to Page 123
Scroll down to the 5th sentence
Post the next 3 sentences on your blog
Name the book and author

Good Omens (since it’s sitting on my desk)

Pedro coughed, ominously. “The next person who says anything. Anything at all. Is Dead” He grinned.

Monkeewrench by PJ Tracy

“Oh, yeah, right, sure we will. Get the fuck outta here, bitch, before we start on you.”
Brothers two and three jerked on the black kid’s arms simultaneously, as if they were one organism instead of two, chiming in with their own colorful suggestions.

And the Ipod Meme from Cynical Bastard

1. Open your library (iTunes, Winamp, Media Player, iPod, etc)

2. Put it on shuffle

3. Press play

4. For every question, type the song that's playing

5. When you go to a new question, press the next button

6. Don't lie and try to pretend you're cool...

Opening Credits: “Adia” by Sarah McLachlan

Waking Up: “Beaton’s Delight” by Ashley MacIsaac

First Day at School: “How can I keep from Singing?” by Enya

Falling In Love: “Eye in the Sky” by The Alan Parsons Project

Fight Song: “It shouldn’t Take Too Long” by Cutting Crew
Breaking Up: “Symphony of Light” by Frederic Delarue

Prom: “Utopia” by Alanis Morissette

Life: “Concerto in C Minor 1. Grave by Telemann
Mental Breakdown: “Take me home, Country Roads” by John Denver
Driving: “Largo” by Telemann

Flashback: “Hungry Heart” by Bruce Springsteen

Wedding: “The Sun Always Shines on TV” by a-ha

Birth of Child: “Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra On Porgy and Bess” By Gershwin

Final Battle: “Angel” by Sarah McLachlan

Death Scene: “Armageddon It” by Def Leppard

Funeral Song: “The Emotion of Love” by Frederic Delarue
End Credit: “Further On – Up the Road” By Bruce Springsteen

Alright, well if nothing else this selection tells you what a TOTAL music weirdo I am. Though I find it interesting that of the 1475 songs in my Ipod it shuffles two Sarah McLachlans and two Frederic Delarue’s so close together. Oh, and two pieces by Telemann. Hmmmmm interesting.

She types as she actually just now puts her earbuds on.

Let's try this again:

Opening Credits: "Per Amore" by Andrea Bocelli

Waking Up: "Canzonetta Spirituale sopra la nanna: Hor Ch'e tempo di dormire by Montserral Figueras

First Day of School: "Symphony No. 25 in G Minor - I: Allegro Con Brio" by Mozzart

Falling in Love: "Concerto in ........................

Awww hell, forget about it. I'm still a musical weirdo.


And finally the WWC:

Mystery: (It's a mystery to me how to make my cheap little digital take good night picks.
This is supposed to be one of the COOLEST moons I have ever seen hanging over the Mississippi River.)

Mystery: (It is also a mystery to me how to not get a shaky picture some times) (Less coffee perhaps????)







And Missing: as in the only thing missing right now is the "Awwwww"

Sunday, January 07, 2007

A Perfect Day

Saturday was a perfect day in Newt land

It started with a great cup or three of Gevalia coffee. And some love and licks from the puppy parade.

Then it was off to meet girlfriends L and JJ for breakfast. L's husband cooked, he's a marvelous chef. We gabbed and giggled and just had a great time.

After that I ran home, grabbed a not too healthy hubster (he has a pinched nerve in his neck), and we went to a burger joint called the 5-8 Club in Minneapolis to meet bloggers Digital Janitor and Mpls Mel. Yes, that's right, Thanks to a suggestion from Digital Janitor to meet up, Newt starts to make a New Years Resolution actually come to fruition. And it was a very fun lunch. Even the miserable hubster managed to perk up a little bit. Anyway, DJ and Melba are an amazing couple. I was a little disappointed though when Melba confessed that she left her ax at home. Oh well. We all had Jucy Lucy's which are burgers that have cheese stuffed inside them rather than on top. They were super tasty. But I have to fess up: while I achieved the beginnings of one New Years resolution I slid on another one. I had a soda. One thing I have aspired to take out of my diet. Oh well.

So, hopefully this lunch was the first of many get togethers. I think all of us are hobby photographers so I can see us heading out on some weekend adventures. Como Zoo and Conservatory, Sculpture Gardens, Landscape Arboretum, Wine Tasting (I'm sure we could find something to photograph while we enjoy some fine wines).

Once we got back home I dropped off the hubster so he could take a nap (which tends to help his neck) and I went to Target to get a little grocery shopping done. I am not sure how it is in the rest of the country but up here in Minnesota going to Target is not just a thing to do, it's an adventure. And time warps in Target. I toodled around, checked out the clearance items around the store, picked up a few groceries, and next thing I know two hours are gone. I have NO idea how it happens but it does.

When I got back the hubster wasn't in a whole lot better shape so I figured I would leave again for a while so he could get more rest. Victoria's Secret was having their semi-annual sale so I figured what the hell, I'll go to the Mall of America.

Saturday nights at MOA seem different from any other night. The crowds are different, the energy is different, and the people watching is top notch. I wanted to grab a coffee, pull up a bench and just sit and watch the show. But there was lacy underwear to be bought so I had to skip the bench.

I finished my evening in Barnes and Noble because I had to grab the rest of the books by PJ Tracy. I can't get Monkeewrench out of my head. I picked up Live Bait and Dead Run. There is one more book but it is only in hardback right now. I think because my mother in law told me the books were exceptional I didn't give it a thought but reading reviews on the books there was the "natural" assumption that Monkeewrench was a fluke and any follow up books wouldn't be as good. Many reviews talk about the fact that book two was a wonderful surprise and book three "proved" that the authors had what it took to write a great series. Maybe I'm treading toward the cynical but is this assumption made because they are female authors (it's a mother daughter team) writing in the crime drama genre? I'm just curious. I don't think I see such pessimistic doubt when men write crime series. It's usually "So and So does it again" rather than "Holy Crap, it's actually a good book"

Anyway, just thought I would throw that out there.

Finally when I arrived home I was pleasantly surprised to find our friends S and S sitting in the living room gabbing with a much happier and healthier hubster. We had a lovely evening. We don't get to see them all that often so it was a nice treat.

So there you have it. My perfect Saturday.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Literary deep thoughts

Last night a little after the witching hour I finished up the book Monkeewrench. I couldn’t put it down. My mother in law had warned me that this would be the case. And apparently every book in the series is like this.

The story takes place in both Minneapolis and rural northern Wisconsin. But that isn’t why I liked it. While it is nice to have a clear mental picture of where the various scenes take place it is not a local only good read.

From the first page I started to connect with the characters and to “fall” into the story. I had a moment of panic/disappointment early on due to a plot device but as it turns out it didn’t effect my ultimate enjoyment of the story. I didn’t want to stop reading. I didn’t want the story to ever come to an end.

Which got me to thinking.

I read because I love that feeling of falling into a story. Of being transported into an entirely different world. Of loosing myself in someone elses life. It’s not that I don’t like my own life, it’s just fun to escape the worries and tribulations of daily life and to take a mental vacation to a different place.

When I open a book for the very first time and begin to read I get excited about the adventure that is in store for me. The emotions, the sights, the smells. Will I laugh out loud? Will I cry? There are infinite possibilities before me each and every time I open a book.

I know, I know, I’ve babbled about this before. But I get such a high from reading a good book. Even better than drugs since there are no nasty after effects. It’s hard to believe there are people in the world that don’t like to read. I respect the choice don’t get me wrong, I just don’t understand it.

Sure you read a lot of duds. But it’s SO worth it because every few books is usually a gem. Or at least a book that changes or enriches you in some way.

Another reason I enjoy reading is for those beautifully crafted sentences that can take your breath away.

Great Gatsby:
That anyone should care in this heat whose flushed lips he kissed, whose head made damp the pajama pocket over his heart.

It occurred to me that I had a fine brain in beautiful working order and that I might as well use it.

Whatever, wherever you are, in minus time-space or plus soul-time, forgive me all this.

You know, what’s so dreadful about dying is that you are completely on your own.

The Marriage of Sticks
Whisper in my heart, tell me you are there.

The Alienist
Whilst part of what we perceive comes through our senses from the object before us, another part (and it maybe the larger part) always comes out of our own mind.

The Angel of Darkness
She has a quality, does the Hudson, as I imagine all great rivers do: the deep, abiding sense that those activities that take place on shore among human beings are of the moment, passing, and aren’t the stories by way of which the greater tale of this planet will, in the end, be told………..

The Corrections

The human species was given dominion over the earth and took the opportunity to exterminate other species and warm the atmosphere and generally ruin things in its own image, but it paid this price for its privileges: that the finite and specific animal body of this species contained a brain capable of conceiving the infinite and wishing to be infinite itself.

Being Dead
The world’s small, breathing denizens, it’s quaking congregations and its stargazers, were fools to sacrifice the flaring briefness of their lives in hopes of paradise or fears of hell. No one transcends. There is no future and no past. There is no remedy for death – or birth- except to hug the space between. Live Loud. Live Wide. Live Tall.


I suppose I wont see you for a while, so farewell, best of luck, avoid roasted cabbage, don’t eat earwax, and look on the bright side of life.

Life Expectancy
They find meaning in their quiet faith, in one another, and in the little miracles of their daily lives. They don’t need ideologies or philosophies to define themselves. They are defined by living, with all senses engaged, with hope, and with a laugh ever ready.

She was motivated not by what others had done to her, not by envy, not by a conviction of moral superiority, but by life’s possibilities.

No one can grant you happiness. Happiness is a choice we all have the power to make. There is always cake.

The Notorious Dr. August
They say that we will soon understand time, that Albert Einstein and his theories will do away with it. But I love time. It keeps everything spread out, like music. A piano sonata without time would be just a loud, cataclysmic bang. And if time separates you from things you love, it also protects you from experiences that are too painful to hold close.

Ok I’m done now

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Random Thursday

Reading stuff:
I’m reading a mystery that takes place in the Twin Cities. They may have given away the murderer early on in the book. That sort of pissed me off. But then I figure it was probably too easy and that person isn’t the murderer but rather a plot device to send me off on the wrong trail. If he is the murderer I’m done reading this author. There’s no joy in knowing who it is from the first 50 pages.

Love stuff
The hubster and I quite often have our thoughts on the same wave length. And something that was just in my head will come out of his mouth. This works both ways.
But then there are other days when I feel like I live with a complete stranger and it’s weird.

Dog Stuff:
Caleb let me pet him for the longest amount of time EVER the other night. Of course I had to reach half way across the living room to do it and I only got to scratch him on the ear and the chin but hey, it’s progress

Food Stuff:
I actually turned down a brownie yesterday at a going away party. I took a bottle of water and went back to my desk. I’m SUCH a good girl. I have aspirations to eat better this year. And not just eat because there is food available. So far so good!

Shoe stuff:
I bought these yesterday on clearance. They still show up on the internet for around 65-75 bucks. I paid 23. The girls at work who have seen them all said the same thing: “Oh my god those are SO you.”

Movie Stuff:
We watched “Drop Dead Gorgeous” on New Year Eve. That movie cracks me up. And Minnesotan’s are SO not all like that.

TV Stuff:
I have discovered too many years too late that I like the show Scrubs. A friend of mine also just discovered it. Now I have to work on catching up.

Clothes stuff:
I have this problem with pet hair on pants and other items of clothing. I own more of those little tape rollers than a person probably should. Some people come in to work in the morning and make coffee. I come into work and de-fur myself.

Minnesota stuff:
Our temps remain in the 30’ and 40’s. This is one of the best winters here EVER for me.
But I am a little nervous about my plants. Some are budding, leafing, sprouting, you name it. That’s usually not a good sign. Because then they get confused when it gets below freezing. And when spring actually does come the buds/flowers/leaves are fewer and less spectacular. Or they don’t come back at all. Also, we don’t have much snow and snow acts as an insulator. So overall this is good for me but bad for nature.

Family stuff:
I was surprised when I gave dad Haunted to read and he let me know the other night that it is now one of his all time favorite books ever. This book is seriously demented. But, like dad and I talked about, it is also dead on in its’ philosophy of human nature.

Coffee stuff:
Last night I waited for the hubster at Starbucks, read my book, and really relaxed. It was nice. I think I have finally come to terms with the fact that I frequent a Starbucks. In the case of coffee near work they win. That’s the bottom line. I have to tip my hat to that particular store manager. He/She has trained the staff to make a consistent cup of coffee.

Coffee Stuff take two:
I would like to add that if I lived in Indy this would not be the case. A very nice person made a mocha for me there and it was darned near the best I ever had. To make it even better the coffee shop supports local artists. Now that is a coffee shop I wish I could frequent.

Sleep stuff:
Last night I dreamt that Gerard Butler was going to be the next Indiana Jones. I think this came from the news brief on the new movie they are heading into production with. It still is starring Harrison Ford. But when you think about it, he would make a cute new Indy. And given that Harry is 62 I think that Gerard could easily be his son. What was really funny about this was the Indy music theme playing in my head, really loudly. It’s still there.

Dun Duh Dun Duh Dun Duh Duh Dun Duh Dun Duh Dun Duh Duh Duh Duh Duh

Hum it with me……………………………….

December stats:

Search terms (that brought people to my site)
feeling my aunt's nyloned feet – apparently I have a fetish I wasn’t aware of.
"miami ink"+"pit bull" – of all their tattoos this would not be one I would talk about.
roger whittaker and unicorns – I believe in both if you must know
tmi moment – what? Who? Me? I never have one of those.
the muse (somedays) – not just some day’s but ALL days
shirtless fight – if it was topless fight I would know how Cynical Bastard found me

Top Countries
Unknown – those aliens are getting to be bigger and bigger fans

Top referrers:
Cynical Bastard
Pickled Beef
Bettys New Trick

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Day three – how about an ABC meme because I really don’t have all that much to talk about today

Taken from Kell

The Letter A
Are you agnostic?
Interesting question. I believe in the power of the universe and in the wonders of nature. But I don’t think that that power is driven by one supreme being sitting up in the clouds somewhere. So, hmmm, I’m not sure if that makes me agnostic or not.
What is your age?
All I know is that to my parents we are “the kids” so that’s good enough for me.
What annoys you?
Television commercials

The Letter B
Do you like bacon?
Almost as much as I like breathing.
What is your birthday?
August something
Who is your best friend?

The Letter C
What is your favorite candy?
Circus peanuts
Who is your crush?
Gerard Butler, Colin Firth, Bruce Springsteen, Kiefer Sutherland
When was the last time you cried?
When I thought Caleb was going to break out of his leash and run

The Letter D
Do you daydream?
Probably too much – there was quite the pause between question 2 and 3 up there for Letter C.
What is your favorite kind of dog?
I like all dogs but I’m partial to mutts and and dog in a shelter
What day of the week is it?
Wednesday I think

The Letter E
How do you like your eggs?
Pretty much any way you cook them. Except well done.
Have you ever been in the emergency room?
Yes but not for me.
What’s the easiest thing to ever do?
Smile (I agree with Kell on that one – good answer.

The Letter F
Have you ever flown in a plane?
Yes, it’s fun.
Do you use fly swatters?
No, the hubster prefers to let all the bugs out of the house.
Have you ever used a foghorn?
No, but I had one scare the crap out of me when I was up on some rocks at some beach in San Francisco.

The Letter G
Do you chew gum?
Yes, currently I am addicted to Orbit Original flavor.
Are you a giver or taker?
Both – come on, let’s be honest here we all love a little bit of both.

The Letter H
How are you?
Fabulous! And yourself?
What’s your height?
5’3” and a ¼. Gotta mention that little extra.
What color is your hair?
It’s called Chocolate Cherry

The Letter I
What is your favorite ice-cream?
Bryers Mint Chocolate Chip
Have you ever ice-skated?
I just bought a pair last weekend. I skated when I was a kid. But it’s been about 25 years. I want to go this weekend.
Do you play an instrument?
I play a little piano. And I tried the violin. But I think I play the hubster best. (you can do with that what you will)

The Letter J
What is your favorite jelly bean?
Do you wear jewelry?
I love unique artsy stuff.
Have you heard a really hilarious joke?
Does yet ANOTHER Viking getting arrested count?

The Letter K
Who do you want to kill?
I plead the 5th.
Do you want kids?
I have to go with Kell’s answer – she said it best: “No. Sure I seem nice and friendly and all that, but I’m really very selfish, neurotic, and set in my ways. I’d be a horrible mother.”
Where did you have kindergarten?
Have or go to? Anyway, it was Hawthorne Elementary in Ontario California.

The Letter L
Are you laid-back?
Well, I’m easy going about most of life and I don’t let things get me too upset. BUT I am also a hard core fidgiter so maybe not.
Do you lie?
No……….as my nose grows longer…………
Do you love anyone?

The Letter M
What is your favorite movie?
I have favorite movies based on mood. So it really depends. But if I could only take one to a deserted island it would have to be Pirates #1.
Do you still watch Disney movies?
Yes, it goes back to that “How old are you question” – mentally I’m still around 3.
Do you like mangos?
No, it’s a texture thing.

The Letter N
Do you have a nickname?
Newt (oh cool, that starts with an "N"
What is your favorite number?
“3” it just feels good, looks good, seems right.
Do you prefer night or day?
They both have their uses.

The Letter O
What is your one wish?
Are you an only child?
Nope, I have a wonderful younger brother.
Do you wish this year was over?
I’ll let you know in a few more weeks. So far though I’m sorta digging it.

The Letter P
What is one fear that you are most paranoid about?
Drowning or not being able to breathe.
What personality trait would you look for in someone you wanted to date?
Sense of humor.

The Letter Q
Are you quick to judge people?
Yes, I tend to be. But I am known for being a good judge of character. So I might be quick but I’m usually also right.

The Letter R
Do you think you are always right?
Until someone shows/proves me otherwise.
Do you watch reality T.V.?
No, though I do get a good laugh from a few minutes of America’s Top Model.
What is a good reason to cry?
A good cry reduces stress.

The Letter S
Do you prefer sun or rain?
I love them both. I need the sun to stay sane and friendly. But I absolutely LOVE a good thunder boomie.
Do you like snow?
I love snow as long as I don’t have to drive in it.

The Letter T
What time is it?
10:05 am
What time did you wake up?
6:00 am
When was the last time you slept in a tent?
2000 I think.

The Letter U
Are you wearing underwear?
Yep, Victoria’s Secret – it’s the only way to go.

The Letter V
What is the worst veggie?
Brussel sprouts
Where do you want to go on vacation?
Florence Italy
What was your last family vacation together?
Well, since my folks are retired I guess this past December when I visited them.

The Letter W
What is your worst habit?
Biting my lip
Where do you live?
In denial? In a fantasy world? In Minnesota? Pick one.

The Letter X
Have you ever had an X-ray?
Yes. Does that make me special?
Have you ever seen the X-Games?
What the heck are X-games?
Do you own a xylophone?
I don’t think so. But who knows what the hubster has stored away.

The Letter Y
Do you like the color yellow?
Yes, it’s the happiest color – makes me think of sunshine and daisies.
What year were you born in?
I will say only this: The summer of love baby!
What do you yearn for most?
Good health and a long happy life with the hubster.

The Letter Z
What is your Zodiac Sign?
Leo: hear me roar.
Do you believe in the Zodiac?
I always find it interesting to listen to people that know a lot about the Zodiac. I’ve been a little taken back when I over hear things like “Oh that’s because you are a Virgo.” Or “Oh, he’s a cancer, that totally explains it.” I would like to think we are a little more individual than that.
What is your favorite zoo animal?
Giraffes and Koalas.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Happy 2007- Part 1

Alrighty boys and girls. Up till 10 minutes ago I was happy happy happy. Now, THREE publishing attempts later with blogger - NOT SO MUCH.

For some reason it won't post my entire entry. So, it's coming to you in pieces:
The year has started great already! We had a fun filled New Years Eve/Hubster Birthday with Boy J and R.

I colored him a card:

And I baked him a cake:

And Boy J’s cat Lucky sampled the cake to make sure it was safe to eat.

I forgot to take pictures of the Curious George decorations. My bad.

Happy 2007 Part 2

New Years day was spent lounging. I read an entire book. And it was marvelous.

I also attempted to read this book but I couldn’t get past page 65. It was trying too hard to be slapstick or clever or something and it wasn’t working for me. Which was an unexpected bummer for me. I’ve been looking forward to reading this book for a long time. But I mentioned my struggles with Boy J and he had the same problem. He didn’t care for it either. And given the reviews I’m a little surprised. I did however bring it to work. Every once in a while I forget to bring whatever book I’m reading with me. Then come lunch I am totally at a loss. So this way I have a back-up.

So now I am reading this book. And I like it so far.

I have updated my Literary Blog with the latest books.

We did break out of our sloth routine and walked over to Boy J and R’s house to finish off the New Year snacks and to watch some Simpsons and Heroes. Ok, so the only non-sloth activity was the three block walk to their house. Because as soon as we got to their place we resumed our slothing.

On the fun and uber girly side I got a call from Girl J letting me know that the DSW holiday sale got even better. See they have these racks in the back of the store that are clearance shoes. And you take 30,40,50, or 70% off the tag price. Well on top of that they had an additional 50% off. So shoes were seriously dirt cheap. I got the hubster some Dockers casual dress shoes (lace up, don’t worry Scott), I also got him some sneakers. For myself I got a pair of mid-calf boots in brown. A pair of brown dress heals, and a pair of black “ballerina” sketchers. They are super cute and dressy enough to wear at work. In total we got 5 pairs of shoes for less than 80 bucks. I don’t think that’s too bad.

Happy 2007 - Part 3

Well, that about sums up the weekend.

My resolutions for 2007:

Read more
Meet 3 or more bloggers
No soda
Drink more water
Less fast food

Not too difficult eh? Reasonable. Probably achieveable. I’ll let ya know how it’s going.

And on a final note:
Here are some random pictures:
The knitting bag I made for my sister in law – I made her a bag and then a needle case that she can put her needles in and it will roll up and tie. If you are a sewer please don’t notice the “drunken monkey” method I used to make this. I can’t sew straight to save my life.

And lastly some cuteness:

Caleb and Sophie sound asleep on the chair.