Monday, March 30, 2009


One thing I like less about Blogspot than LiveJournal, which I used to use, is the way comments are handled. You can have whole comment "threads" or conversations (I called them commentversations) on LJ back and forth with one person or several people, and they're all linked together. I dislike being unable to really reply to my comments here in that way, so occasionally I might put replies to comments in an actual blog post.

1. Sarah, the Redwall books do have a cookbook. I haven't looked at it or heard anything about it, but I always loved the descriptions of the feasts in the books. The desserts sounded heavenly, and since the main characters were mice and hedgehogs and such, most of the dishes were vegan, or maybe included some fish or eggs. It seems like it would be interesting to check out.

2. To clarify, the post about my tattoo was not a blog about my tattoo. It was one post on a blog about tattoos in general. The wording of one of the comments led me to believe someone might think the whole thing was just about mine.

3. I'm not going to fuss with whomever owns that blog. He/she credited me, didn't get any facts wrong, and even linked back to my blog where the picture was originally posted. I would have liked him/her to ask me first, and I probably would have said yes after I checked out the blog. But, as some commenters said, it's the internet. It's harder to prove things, much harder to keep track of things, and the "ettiquitte" or whatever you'd call it is more iffy. The blogger is not claiming my picture or my tattoo as his/her own, and is not saying anything mean or inappropriate, so I'm letting it go. The only thing I can think to do to prevent any picture of mine being used without my permission is to put a watermark on them all, which is frankly too much work and not, I think, necessary. If someone wants to look at something I did and say "Hey, neat!" that's fine and kind of flattering. As long as I'm credited for it, or at least they're not stealing it from me, I don't think I care.

Ugh, off to work. I cannot WAIT for two days off in a row soon!

Friday, March 27, 2009

8 Things Friday

1. I finally got my phone upgrade yesterday! I haven't had a new phone for three or four years. My little pink Razr was fine, of course, but the sound quality wasn't that great, and with all the texting I'm doing now, to Matt, my work friends, even my mom... the whole "hitting a button four times for one letter" thing got a little old. So now I have this:


The Blackberry Curve 8330. I love love love it! When I first started thinking about my phone upgrade, I wanted a Blackberry of some sort, but didn't want to pay for internet, which you have to have. But then we got rid of our house phone, and we've decided we don't use Netflix nearly as often as we used to, so we're axing that as well. So really our bills will be the same as they've been after my new phone stuff gets added onto our cell phone bill. Not bad.

I can do Facebook whenever I want! I can Google the name of an actor I can't remember, or look up a definition on I can get directions if I'm lost and I can check my email anywhere. It's so cool!

2. This is specifically for Andrea, if you're reading, but others of you might find it amusing. The other day a guy came through my line at work with a tattoo on his upper arm, partly covered by the sleeve of his t-shirt. When the transaction was nearly done, I asked, "What's your tattoo of?" because it was very colorful, and literally covered every inch of his upper arm. It looked like a landscape, with grass in the foreground and mountains in the background. He lifted his sleeve up and started muttering something, then I exclaimed, "Is that from a Redwall book??" and he nodded and said yeah. It was of a badger in armor being charged by a bunch of ferrets/weasels with spears. (Maybe from Salamandastron?) I loved those books when I was younger! And I think it's so funny yet awesome that someone would get a TATTOO of a scene from one of them.

3. Besides the new phone, I have another change:


I had bangs cut on Wednesday! I'd been thinking about it for a while, but didn't want to do it because I would inevitably want to grown them out, and that's such a huge pain. I haven't had bangs since about junior year of high school, when I started to grow out the bangs I'd had since eigth grade or so. This is a change, which I'd been wanting for my hair, but not a big drastic one like chopping it all off. I like it! :)

(Sorry for the expression, I'd been playing around with eye makeup and wanted to show that off too.)

4. Ahh, work. I meet so many... interesting... people there. You know how certain credit cards let you go online and choose a picture to put on your card? Most people have pics of their pets. Today this guy comes through--maybe five feet tall with his shoes on, but rather buff and clearly thought he was spiffy by the way he talked and carried himself. Wore a nice, preppy-looking button-down shirt, kind of blingy jewelry, buzz cut. On his credit card were two pictures of himself!!! One in color where he was smiling, and one black and white where he looked serious and was staring into the distance. COULD YOU GAG?

5. I was searching, though Google, for an older post to link to when I came across a picture of myself on someone else's blog. It's of my first tattoo and includes a mini-bio about me and why I got the tattoo, as well as a link to this blog.

I'm not sure how I feel about this. On one hand, I did put that picture up on my blog, and anyone with a computer and an internet connection can read it. I guess it's kind of flattering, that someone would want to feature me and my tattoo on their blog about tattoos. But that's my picture, and my tattoo, my body. They didn't ask permission or even just notify me in any way.

But I do the same thing all the time. I link to friends' blogs, or webpages I think are neat. I post recipes, pictures, videos, crafty things, anything I find interesting and want to share. I think that's just the nature of the internet, and there's no use getting angry about it unless someone is using something of mine and claiming it as their own, rather than just saying "This is neat and here's where it came from." So I guess I'm not upset about it. It's just... a little odd.

6. Matt's dad and step-mom had our niece and nephews for the week, and we were able to run down and have dinner with them all after work today. Matt's older sister is in D.C. visiting family, and her husband stayed home with the dogs, so it was just "Grandma and Papa" and the kids all week! (Bob and Karen seemed tired!) But the kids had a blast playing Attack Uncle Matt! And it was fun to see them. They're getting so big! Lauryn is 7, Dylan's 5, and Ethan is 3. Lauryn is writing pretty well now, and acting like Hannah Montana. (Sigh.) Dylan is his usual wild self, but more like a boy than a little toddler. And Ethan is talking in full sentences (though when he gets over-excited or you put him on the spot with a question, he seems to stutter a little, repeating the first two words over and over til he gets the whole thing out. Hm.) Ethan did a "stage dive" off the bed and bonked his head on the dresser, but other than that, much fun was had and spaghetti was eaten.

7. I have such long, middle-of-the-day shifts for the next three days, I don't know when I'll ever have time to get groceries or do laundry. Ugh. Tomorrow after work--I'm off at 7--I'll have to run to the store so we have SOMETHING to eat. Sunday is packed as usual--nursery, church, then work til close--and Monday I work 10-5ish. I guess grocery shopping will happen then, but DANG. I hate not having any decent food and barely enough clean clothes to get by.

8. Well, I still can't find the dang post I was looking for! I was going to link to the one with pictures of the old house my relatives bought and fixed up. It used to be my maternal grandmother's mom and dad's house. (If anyone can find that post easily, link in the comments, will ya? Thanks. The house has a green roof, and there's also a picture of a huge tree and an old chair.) ANYway, when I was visiting my mom earlier this week and both her sisters were in town from out of state, we all went to "Cornbread Corner," so called because Mamo (what everyone called my great-grandma) made a lot of cornbread, apparently, and Grandad loved it. Also, the house is on the corner of that street.

My aunt Lori, who hadn't seen the place since she was about twelve and Mamo and Grandad moved to Texas to retire, kept saying how much smaller everything looked. She used to think it was amazing that her mom let her and her friends play in the barn because it was soooo far from the house! But it's maybe 25 steps. The front patio was huuuuge! But now it's just.... patio-sized.

I've done that the last couple of times I've visited my Grandme's (dad's mom) house. The "playroom" with the green speckled linoleum used to seem giant, more than enough for all the cousins and all our toys. But it's just a little office-type space with a big table in the corner. There was a whole world under the big pine tree where we used to play, but there's no way I could even fit under there now. It's funny. I'm not that much bigger now than I was at 10 years old. I've gained maybe a foot of distance from the floor. But it's not so much a matter of size as it is perspective. As an adult, you think about different things, or you think about the same things in different ways. Your imagination works differently, as does your ability to focus. You can't block out the rest of the world so the playroom becomes your world. And I think it's interesting. Have any of you, Dear Readers, found the same thing to happen, when you returned to a place from your childhood?

Alw_ays, from your comment on Sunday's post: It's so funny that you recognized the font from my header! It's not my favourite, but it is called Heather, so I had to have it. :) Your links to the yo-yo things on last 8 Things Friday... *shudder* Bag's kinda cute, the elephant... freaky.

If you read this through RSS and don't see the actual page, yes, I have a new header as of last Friday. <3

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Things that make me happy (because I need a reminder)

*The weather we've been having. Lovely 70 degree days with the barest of breezes. Days where you go outside and you can feel the perfection and softness of the air on your skin, just the right temperature. Days where your sun-parched body drinks up the warmth after a long winter's hibernation.

*The smell of clean clothes. Something about the mix of my Surf detergent and Downy liquid fabric softener makes the whole house smell nice when I have clothes hung up to dry.

*Real Simple magazine. I know I've raved about it here before, but I really do like this magazine! The layout is minimalist and clean-looking, making it a pleasure to look at for the entire time it takes to read the whole thing. Some of the recipes are a little far-fetched for us (lamb kebabs? really?) but I do want to make some of them, someday. I love the simple "Why didn't I think of that?" cleaning/storage/shopping tips, and while most of the clothes and accessories are out of my price range, I still like seeing the fashion articles. The essays are always interesting, and long enough to get a full sense of what the author is talking about while being brief enough to finish in one sitting, between work and dinner, or blog-checking and bed. Even the paper is different from normal magazine paper: not too shiny, thick enough to feel like it's of a bit higher grade.

*Creating. I seem to have gone through a dry spell for several weeks, not doing anything crafty but the bit of knitting I'd get done at Weekly Fiber, my Wednesday-night crafting group. But I can see the surface of my sewing table (still!) and have begun peeking through my fabric stash. I'm getting inspired for cotton sundresses and vintage button-up shirtdresses, though I'm not to that point quite yet. For now, I'm content with cutting out circles and stitching them into cute, useless (for now), maybe slightly tacky yo-yos, and knitting simple garter stitch armwarmers and little cotton baby hats. Be on the lookout for a little tutorial in the next week.

*Things I am thankful for. This ranges from clean, safe drinking water to my shelves and shelves of books, from a good job to my health, from my great husband to my loving family. I should never take any of those things for granted, because there are millions of people in the world that do without them, that will always do without them because there is no way for them to have such things.

I just need a little reminder sometimes that things aren't as bad as my silly brain tries to convince me they are.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

8 Things Friday

1. Green! Appropriately enough, I really started noticing the green things popping up and peeking through on Tuesday, which was Saint Patrick's day. On my short walk across the mostly-dead grass on the way to class that morning, I bent down suddenly to feel between my fingers the soft, slender strands of new grass fighting its way up from the earth, between yellowed clumps of deadness. There are tiny buds on bushes, and the tips of globe willows are, as always, among the first trees to show signs of life. Thick, waxy tulip leaves seem to grow taller every day, rising up from their hibernation. Soon the forsythia bushes will be fully bright yellow, and then will come the daffodils, the culmination of those tulip bulbs, and grape hyacinths: yellow, red, and purple lining front walkways and edging fences and walls.

You know, until we get our customary late-April snowstorm, but I'll take what I can get when I can get it in the way of Springiness.

2. I am quitting coffee. Don't freak out, those of you who know me and my undying love for the drink! I'm certainly not quitting cold-turkey, nor will I give it up completely. But my teeth are very much not as white as I would like them to be, and if I don't have at least one cup before noon-ish, I have an awful headache all afternoon. I am dependent. So I'm going to use up the rest of the cannister I have now, then finish all the decaf I have to wean myself off it slowly. I'll buy a little can of each for guests and emergencies (like NEEDING to stay awake late to finish homework, or drive late), and I will still have coffee and coffe drinks occasionally when I'm visiting people or out at coffee shops. But I intend to switch to tea once all my coffee is gone, probably black tea to start, since that has the most caffeine and that's what I like the most. But that stains your teeth too, and you can become just as dependent on caffienated black tea as you can on coffee. So eventually I'll train myself to like some (flavored) green teas, and maybe some red, which both have no caffiene. I even know this really cool tea shop owner that could totally hook me up....

But overall, I think I'll be healthier for it, hopefully have whiter teeth eventually, and won't be so dependant on it. Wish me luck!

3. I'll be visiting family Monday through Wednesday. Both my mom's sisters will be in town (in her town) those days--one gets there, then the other, then the first one leaves, then the second one leaves, so that's within the overlap--and my grandparents are home, too, having been gone since just after Christmas! I'm looking forward to spending time with all of them.

4. The swap night at Weekly Fiber went over pretty well! I got rid of ALL the yarn I brought! It was just skeins and balls of acrylic in various colours, and had pretty much sat there since I bought it or was given it. I'd used some of a few of them, but apparently they weren't going to be doing me much good. Gone, gone! Unfortunately the quilter Jen said she might bring didn't show up, so my scrap box is still as full as it was. But I got rid of all the patterns I brought (one was a multiple, one I'd accidentally grabbed in the wrong size, and one was for a kid's jumpsuit which I knew I'd never make). Also got rid of a crafty magazine, a couple bags of plastic "crystals" like you put in the bottom of a vase, and some ribbon. I came home with all my scrap fabric, of course, as well as a few of the other crafty magazines (catalogues, really), four big nifty buttons, and a brown fleece wrap that looks very cozy. I think I'm going to applique some felt and/or fleece flowers onto it, maybe with some beads in the centers of the flowers. We'll see.

Anyway, success! I think we should do this every couple of months just to help us clear out our old stuff, and get new, inspiring stuff.

5. Also success: we have a new member! She used to sit near my family in the church where I grew up, but has lived here for the last several years, and is now a friend of Jen's, who brought her. She's just (re)learning to knit, and she took this pattern from me last night, which was the multiple I bought (I grabbed it TWICE because "Ooh it's on sale and I've wanted it! Yoink!" having forgot I already had it) because she had seen me in the same pattern (more or less--the Simplicity is based on the first one on this page) at an art gallery opening last Spring. I wish her luck in her crafty endeavors!

6. Does anyone have any wonderful ideas for things to do with fabric yo-yos?


I just started making them last night without really knowing why, and intend on making many more. I quite like this bag, and I think the ones from the fabric I used for these ones, especially the bigger, fluffier ones, would make great flower brooches. (I'll see what I can do about leaves.) But what else? Shall I make a table runner out of them? A curtain? A crazy skirt or vest with all different sizes and patterns? Show me lovely things with fabric yo-yos!

7. Happy first day of Spring! It's official now. :D

8. In all my Not Accomplishing Much At the House On My Day Off yesterday, I stopped by my favorite vintage store/art gallery to poke around and came home with this for a very reasonable $26 and in very good shape:



Lovely lovely, isn't it? Honestly, I have a couple other dresses very similar to this, but I never wear them because the lining is SOOOO polyester that they don't breathe, and I sweat, and it's gross. But I think the lining of this is cotton/polyester, and the outside fabric is practically gauze. Very springy!

I'm thinking a cream-coloured choker with a big fluffy flower off-center, my hair down and curled, and brown riding boots, maybe.

Monday, March 16, 2009


There are so many things I'd like to do every day, but just don't have the time for. When I do have the time, it's at the end of a full day when I'm too tired to concentrate or my body doesn't want to do anything but sit on the couch. But if I had four or so extra hours every day (and four or so extra hours every night to sleep and make up for it), here's what I'd want to do EVERY day:

-write on Bernice's story
-write something, anything, else
-sew and/or knit
-play My Word Coach on the DS to stretch my brain
-do 30 minutes of Wii Fit
-cook a real dinner

I'm sure I could come up with more. Looking at that list, I might need (want) more than four hours! *Sigh*

What would you do with four more hours a day?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

8 Things Friday

1. The sewing cord/pedal was found!!! Jen's daughter found it "somewhere" and Jen texted me last night to tell me. Since I was almost home from meeting my mom halfway between our towns for chatting and snacks, I whipped the car around and went to pick it up. Yay yay yay! :D

2. I realized that the deadline for my application material was the 15th, and that the 15th is a Sunday. I intended to turn it in today, but... it's Spring Break. Everything on campus is closed. I figured... I don't know what I figured. I didn't think. Maybe I thought the faculty would be on campus at least a bit, since they had... papers to grade? Work to do? Applications to accept?? Anyway, I guess I'll just turn this all in on Monday and hope for the best, despite it being a day late. You know, they could have MOVED the deadline, so it wasn't due on the Sunday after Spring Break this year!

Or I could've got it in early. But I don't like that option as much.

3. I was going to run to the WalMart money center for a money order to send to the CBI with my fingerprint card, but I'll just do that tomorrow. I only have about an hour before I have to eat and get ready for work, and after writing like a madwoman all morning, I want to chill a little. Perhaps sew.

4. Speaking of sewing, here is the project some of you may have seen me mention on Facebook:


I got a men's XL shirt at the Goodwill, removed the arms, sewed down the sides to make it more fitted, took off the cuffs and gathered/pleated the bottom of the much-shortened sleeves onto them, gathered the top of the sleeves onto the body again, and ta-da!



I could have put some darts in front and back to make it even more girl-shaped, but I don't care that much right now. It might be cute with the right belt, but right now I just like it over jeans with accessories in the various colors of the stripes.


Coral-y orange, lavender, light blue, mossy green...

I have a red and black plaid flannel shirt that will soon meet the same end, perhaps with little flutter sleeves instead of the puffs. It's currently in pieces and pinned up one side, so maybe I'll have pics of it for next week's 8 Things Friday.

5. On the way home from work tonight, I saw a white limosine that had been jacked up on huuuuge offroading tires, so it was four or five feet off the ground. You could see all the supports from the car to the tires (whatever those are called). It was ridiculous.

6. I'd better add another baby hat to the list, because another friend is pregnant! This will be their fourth. Never a dull moment in their house! Sarah, I'm so excited for you.

7. Speaking of knitting, I'm happy with how Weekly Fiber is going. Two friends (one blogs here) dropped in for a bit this past Wednesday, but otherwise it's just been us usual three die-hards. If you have this Wednesday night free and have crafty stuff--tools, materials, whatever--you don't use or need, bring them to Swap Night! I'm bringing my fabric scrap box in case there are any quilters, and probably a fair bit of yarn. I know Jen is bringing fabric as well. There may be some stamps if my supervisor from work comes. I just can't go home with as much as or more than I brought!

8. If you like vintage fashion, you will love The Secret Lives of Dresses. Authoress of A Dress A Day occasionally writes out a whole backstory for a vintage dress (though whether she owns these dresses or just finds pictures of them, I'm not sure). They're very well-written and interesting, and it makes me think about the people who owned and used the vintage things I now possess. Here's the first one; the rest are linked in the side bar waaaaaaaay down the page! Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Black Hole

Yesterday before work, I packed up a couple little projects, a loaf of banana bread, and my sewing machine to take over to a friend's house for a morning of sewing. I succeeded in removing the pocket and sleeves from an XL men's shirt, then pinning one side of it so it would be Heather-sized, but I never got my machine out of the car, nor did I do any sewing on Jen's machine. I went home before work to unload all my stuff and eat lunch. I realized when I put my sewing machine back on the table in the office that I hadn't seen the cord and pedal I'd unplugged and wrapped up when I was getting ready to go.

I searched the bags I'd taken. I searched the office, the living room, and the kitchen, in case I'd set it down and never brought it to Jen's in the first place. I searched the car. I called Jen to see if I'd left it on her kitchen table when I unpacked my bags. I took everything out of the little case where I'd put my scissors and pincushion and fabric. I hunted through all the junk on the kitchen table again. I looked under and around everything in the office.

I CAN'T FIND IT. And I can't use my sewing machine unless it's plugged into the wall and has a pedal to make it go.

A black hole has eaten my sewing machine cord, and just when I'd gotten started sewing again, too!

Friday, March 06, 2009

8 Things Friday

1. How do I keep ending up writing this so late? *Sigh*

2. Went out for dinner and a chick-flick with a friend from work tonight. :) We'd never really socialized "alone together" before this, and it was nice! He's Just Not That Into You was better than I thought it would be. It made me simultaneously want to punch Matt just on general principal, because the world is full of stupid, crappy men, and hug him, because he's usually not one of them. Let me just say that I am SO glad not to be in the world of dating!

3. The enchiladas I made the other night turned out quite well, I think!


I just use mix from a packet (to which you add water and tomato sauce) for the sauce, so no big deal. But instead of cooking the chicken in the oven wrapped up in tin foil with chicken broth and spices, I cooked it in the crock pot with the same allll day. When I had Matt check it to see if it was done (I was at the store when it was time), he said it just fell apart when he poked it with the knife. Mmmm! Tortillas wrapped around shredded chicken (a leeeetle dry, but I'll continue to perfect the other ingredients and the cooking time), grated cheese, and black beans. Then sauce and more cheese. Yum!

4. I cleaned The Office of Doom a bit more yesterday, and got the table cleared off to the point that I was actually able to sew on it! A while back, I'd grabbed the wrong pattern to make myself PJ pants out of cute pink roses and skulls flannel... and it wouldn't fit over my butt. I couldn't pull them up all the way. DANG IT. So I thought, "Who is tiny, and likes pink and skulls?" and thought of my friend, Megan's, little sister. I finally finished those yesterday, and got them all packaged up to drop by her house soonish. I also started something else which I can't tell you about yet. But first! I had to DUST everything.


How sad is that?? Poor, neglected little sewing machine. I'm sorry, baby, I won't let it happen again.

5. My application for the education program is due in a week, but I think all I have to do is write my "letter of intent" type thing, and go to the sheriff's office to do my fingerprint card. (The state keeps it on file to make sure they don't hire sex offenders or whatever as public school teachers.) Eeeek, it's getting close!

6. I just did a Google search, then went to to make sure I spelled sheriff right. I'm still not sure I did. That looks so weird! What kind of stupid word ends with two Fs??

7. Concerning my last post about the interesting things: I saw them all while driving, and therefore could not take pictures of them. My camera phone takes waaaaaaaaay too long to load the camera thingy, the pictures would've turned out horribly, and it's probably kind of dangerous to shoot photos while driving. Sorry. And yes, Mom, I'll bet I do have much in common with the girl in the tulle skirt and black knee-high boots. I'm kind of inspired to make a floaty tulle skirt myself, now, and maybe wear it with those funky black vinyl boots with the straps. :D

8. An intersting thing I saw today was a Storm Trooper and Kevin Smith standing on the corner in front of a small shopping center with a sign reading "(Such-and-such) Comic Store." That made my afternoon.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Interesting Things I've Seen Today

1. A very bright red door, freshly painted I think, on the front of a totally white house.

2. A girl in knee-high black leather boots and a pea coat, with a blue and turquoise tulle skirt or dress peeking out from beneath the coat. She was walking to school.

3. A beautiful flower design "painted" in the dust and mud on the back of a big shipping truck.