Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Boo-Day Tricks & Treats!

What Your Choice of Halloween Candy Says About You
~~Begin excerpt~~

The Washington Post has examined the all-important issue of what kind of Halloween candy you give out to trick-or-treaters says about you. Steve Almond, the author of Candyfreak: A Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America), provided the in-depth psychological personality type treat analysis, based on....well, we're not exactly sure what he based it on. But we totally agree with his statement in his book:
"There's something incredibly liberating about a holiday that encourages children to take candy from strangers," Almond writes of Halloween in his book. Indeed. For some reason, Almond asked that we make clear that he is a "professional candyfreak, not a therapist."
Read on to find out what message you're sending to your neighbors:
Three Musketeers: Does well in groups but is somewhat pompous. Prone to fancy costumes and arcane weapons. Wears hats in public that are ill-advised.
Almond Joy: I'm going to put aside my aversion to coconut in praising these folks as happy-go-lucky.
Bit-O-Honey: They have contradictory personalities, hoping to express generosity but also having the passive-aggressive desire to damage the fillings of trick-or-treaters.
Butterfinger: Evasive, slippery, not necessarily to be trusted.
Candy Corn: Purely deluded people. They don't get that candy shouldn't attempt to imitate other food groups, particularly corn.
Good and Plenty: Optimistic, perhaps overly so. A little bit of Weimar energy. Strong advocate of gay rights; acquainted with the bitterness at the center of most lives.
Reese's Peanut Butter Cups: Generous souls. Those who understand the salty in life, as well as the sweet.
Snickers: Just going with the crowd, the safe candy choice, guaranteed to please the masses. Not ambitious, but dependable.
You can see the full chart with more analysis of your inner psyche, completely horrifying calorie counts and then vote on your favorite treat to hand out here. A word of advice, though: whatever you do, don't give out Twizzlers. They'll peg you as one of the "Sickos. Truly demented. Plastic people living plastic lives."

~~End excerpt~~

My personal pick: Tootsie Roll Pops (she said, silently thankful they didn't analyze that one....).


~~The Ghosts of Halloween Past~~
Both the 2peas bloggers QOTD and the AARPeas QOTW are basically the same topic: memories of Halloween as a child / growing up / yadayada. Well, I'm going to remember back 19 years today, to our first Halloween as a family. Hubs and I got dressed up, too, because we gave a party that night for family and friends.

Here's little Missy in her very first costume: a pink puppy dog with her own matching pink puppy dog. Hubs was snapping the photos (look out), and he didn't think to give her the stuffed animal, so she's looking kind of forlorn. So we give her the toy and she's like, what the heck is this? Third shot: Mom to the rescue. This perks her up and she's all shines. Looks like she's reacting to me telling her a dirty joke or something. I think I said something like, aren't you the cutest thing...probably the same way the mom in the V-8 commercial tells her kid she's having a french fry, yes she is, before the kid bops her one. Whoa, was I lucky there...LOL

This photo is of Hubs. Pirates were hothothot for grown-ups back then, too. I think he wore that costume for about 5 or 6 Halloweens before finally getting tired of it. Personally, I think he just liked wearing the makeup, what do you think? LOL

Finally, we have me. (Please be kind.) My mom made the yellow clown suit, so I kinda had to wear it to please her. And both my mom and my dad were clowns, too, but they only stayed about 30 minutes at the party, after scarring Missy for life with fear (who ARE those people WAAAAAAA!)(I waited until after putting her down for the night to transform myself). Anyway, that wig got really uncomfortable as the night wore on, but how 'bout those cheeks, huh? LOL


Tomorrow I start a brand new challenge! You may have notice my new icon on the sidebar (top): Art Every Day Month. To find out about it, you can click on the link I show for signing up (you can just read what it's all about there, too).

I love Leah's quiet determination, dedication, and talent. I've seen her go for ages creating one thing every day without fail, and that amazes me. Anyway, it's really low pressure/stress and I can even count cooking if I need to. (ok, I was going to say a poop, but that would have been too gross, right? LMAO)

So, I thought it would be worth it to help me rev up for holiday gift-making. And tomorrow is Day One, so go out and scare people, eat candy, make yourself sick, and I'll see ya tomorrow!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Comcast kidnapped me

OMGosh, I hate our new cable and internet provider, Comcast. Time Warner skipped town during the summer and Comcast took their place. At first they were fine. But either my cable TV or my cable internet or both has been down 5 times in the last 3 weeks, and this last time it went down Saturday night and did not come back on until this afternoon.

Boy, I was livid at first, then just disgruntled, then in serious withdrawal, LOL. But, I guess I should thank them, although I don't want to. I decided to go ahead and move my computer and all the peripherals to my office. The weather was cool outside so the attic would be bearable. I asked Hubs to get up there and move my cable connection, and shock, he didn't even protest. (I've only been giving him advanced warning for like 6 months that this was coming).

Then, the hard part: move all that electrical crap and a desk and a chifferobe. Well, why not, it's not gonna move itself. Thank goodness I remembered to snap my connects on the back of the tower first (do you do that? I always do, in case I get confused putting it all back together.)

So, I worked all day Sunday on it and part of today. I had Missy's room to put stuff in (our house is so jam-packed -- ahem, cluttered, I guess -- so it's hard to move stuff around), and now there's a lot of stuff in her room. Stuff I'll have to find another place for or put back in its place, because I was also cleaning out the collected crapola that seems to accumulate.

It would have been a pretty quick job had I not had to clean, too. Missy's room was horrid, just awful. It's dusted and vaccuumed in there now. I couldn't bare to put my stuff in there on top of all that dust! LOL And then the ceiling fans in 4 rooms needed cleaning (I have to wet-clean because of my allergies). And on and on.

Finally, I got it all set back up. but not before having to slather my back in Blue analgesic stuff because it froze up on me. No wonder: my pedometer said I walked twice the steps on Sunday that I usually walk, and ditto for today, too. That's 3 miles per day of rearranging! LOL

But, it was all worth it in the end, because now my family room is on its way to being presentable for the holidays, and my office is no longer missing a computer. Trust me, I've got about another month of clean-up-and-put-away-and-gettin-just-right, because I am not killing myself to get it all done as quickly as the last 48 hours. I'll do some of it every day. But, I'm in sight of the finishl ine and it feels gooooood.

Plus, I actually followed my plan and in a timely manner, too. {Gasp!} I honestly can't remember the last time that happened. Seriously.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Surf-Share Saturday/Sunday

It occurred to me today, as I was trying to come up with some good content for today's entry and ending up with some lame ideas all the way around, that I have a few pretty cool sites bookmarked to share. Hence, the start of something new! Surf-Share! LOL What a great topic to be able to fall back on when needed. So, without further ado, let me dig into my Google Reader for a few links to sites you might find interesting.

1.Since I still officially have a teen (who also considers herself one) until July 2008, I like being inspired by scrap layouts specifically for teens. And if you scrap for teens, you know how tough that can be! So, I consider Scrap The Teenz a God-send. There are a ton of fabulous layouts there, and the inspiration flows strong. The sidebar has links to 3 other great sites for family inspiration: Scrap the Girls, Scrap the Boys, and Scrap the Pets. Geez, what more could you need? Scrap the In-Laws? LOL

2.I lurk at Elizabeth Bunsen's web site most every time she posts a new entry. She is an artist in Burlington, Vermont, I think. Pure eye candy and quirkiness abounds. Never know what she is going to post. Mostly photos, and many times scenes of her bit of Heaven she calls her home. Man, if only I could be so lucky to have her gig, LOL. Guaranteed to lift your spirits and call you to your creative home.

3.Here's a journal challenge blog you can enjoy even if you don't join in: This Is Me Journal Challenges. They note in the sidebar, "The This is Me Journal, is designed to give you a creative outlet and way to jot down some random ideas about yourself. In 10 years, you will probably look back at these pages and laugh- and that is the idea. Not really to get too deep, but to express things that you think and do everyday- that you never want to forget!" If you already journal well but need inspiration, if you're a scrapper who needs a new way to journal, a scrapper who needs journaling improvement, or if you just like to see what other people create and think about, check out this site. Don't forget the ginormous list of particpant's links listed on the sidebar, and if you start at the bottom of the blog page and work your way up, you get all the challenge 411 from Day One, complete with slide shows of each challenge's participant entries. This site is fully loaded. It's the Everyday done in almost every way. LOL

4.Confessions of Pioneer Woman, a city girl transplanted into country life as a ranch owner's wife, and her companion site, Pioneer Woman Cooks, are delightful and funny escapes. I don't want to be her, but I want to know Pioneer Woman, otherwise known as Ree in real life. But I'll just have to suck up every morsel she throws out to her adoring fans. The woman can write! OMG. I just finished her latest entry about how she met her DH, aka Marlboro Man. And Ree only cooks fat-laden, starchy, stick-to-your-ribs, old-timey ranch hand food, and she includes step by step photos and instructions in case you want to cook it all too. What a guilty pleasure!

5.From the ranch to the farm, LOL. Sherelle Christensen's a big name in scrapbooking, but on her blog, My Crazy Life, we get a nicely written, beautifully photographed window into her simple, lovely and genuine and immensely busy life on her family's Idaho farm. I have to say, I'm just blown away by it all. Her snaps are stunning, particularly the scenery of her everyday surroundings, and also quaint, sweet and old-fashioned when the subjects are her family and the community. Plus, there are delicious farm-food recipes, oh my. Very similar to Ree (#4), but never snarky, always genuine and forthright. I crave daily feeds of her musings.

Well, that's 5 great escapes. Hope you give them a test run if they suit you. I've got a date with some cleaning and then later with the Hubs, so I'll see ya Monday! Have an awesome weekend!

Friday, October 26, 2007

What Color Are You?

Saw this color quiz on Heather's blog and thought it looked fun! Try it for yourself. My color result is not my absolute favorite, but it is in the complimentary triangle of those I like, and the description of me is pretty close! (how'd they do that?)

you are mediumseagreen

Your dominant hues are cyan and green. Although you definately strive to be logical you care about people and know there's a time and place for thinking emotionally. Your head rules most things but your heart rules others, and getting them to meet in the middle takes a lot of your energy some days.

Your saturation level is medium - You're not the most decisive go-getter, but you can get a job done when it's required of you. You probably don't think the world can change for you and don't want to spend too much effort trying to force it.

Your outlook on life is brighter than most people's. You like the idea of influencing things for the better and find hope in situations where others might give up. You're not exactly a bouncy sunshine but things in your world generally look up.

the spacefem.com html color quiz

Remember what I said yesterday about the art journal page I was working on?

It's way too cutesy.

It's pink.

It's "little girl-y".

Ok, then, you were prepared ahead of time, so here it is:

It's an homage to my childhood love of ballerinas and all things pink. Serious love back in the day. When I look at it, it helps me bring up visual memories of my ballet classes, my endless Barbie play, and itchy, scratchy, frilly, floaty dress slips made of netting, worn on Sundays under crisp cotton dresses with black patent leather shoes. Those kinds of memories, and as I have no photographs of them and am getting up there in age, this and other art like it will have to do as my helper. I'm suddenly reminded of the phrase "reverting back to my childhood". LOL Yep, the older we get, the more we cherish that time, if only to be able to still remember it.

{Shiver, shudder} Whoa, that's getting to be old fart talk, right?

Hey, I'd like to thank all of you who left comments here! What empowerment I get from you! And, just so you know, I try harder than heck to repay the favor by going to all of your blogs and commenting.

I'm pretty excited right now. I had a doctor's appt this morning with my rheumotologist (one reason I'm late blogging today). Sort of like a final checkout from the heavy-duty therapy I've been on to fight all of my arthritii. I'm now on maintenance! WooHoo! Plus, and I'll explain more about this later as I learn about it, he asked me to be in a special drug trial for a new med to help improve my cognition and my inability to handle stress. I'm so in. Tired of being slow and avoiding stuff due to the possible stress. Something about putting the coating back on my brain synopsies or something like that. I was like, what has this got to do with arthritis, though? He laughed and explained that so many chronic arthritis patients have been damaged by the pain meds like I was, so his specialty is a targeted population for it. My biggest problem now is not to get my hopes up. I have my first prescription, but it'll take 1-3 months to see if it works. I just have to hope this can help me regain some ground. There are things I want to do! LOL

Have a great weekend! Thoughts and prayers to the California fire victims as they begin to piece it all back together. {{Hugs}

Thursday, October 25, 2007

It's A Not-Want-To-Blog Day

I'm just not that into it today, but I am into trying to write every day, so I am making myself do it. Don't you have those kind of days? I do, not that often, I admit. I usually love to write, so why is today different?

I've been creating today! Oops, I am breaking my October rule, I know. Just couldn't help myself, I suppose. Playing in my art journal. Nothing finished, of course. Of course. But, I am closer. Promise.

And you are not going to believe one of the pages when I finally upload them all. A hint: it defies everything we've been taught to not do anymore.

It's way too cutesy.

It's pink.

It's "little girl-y".

Part of me keeps lobbying to just lie and say I made it for my little 7-y.o. niece, hehe. You know me, though. Too honest and open for my own good, so I will be owning it as my art. And, you know what? I likey. I am really into the Who-Gives-A-Crap School of Art: in other words, don't try to dictate to me what is and isn't art. I'll do my own thing, thank you. I might even do more. Eegads!

And you thought I was exxagerating about being a nonconformist last week? HA!

Lord, What I Do For My Friends...

Heather has tagged me, with the same challenge that Gina tagged me with last week. It's not Heather's fault, though, and I loves me some Heather and Gina both, so I'll play. Actually, it's not a bad tag challenge, and one that could be done every week if ya had to. Last time, I refused to tag other people (I wasn 't in the mood, ya know), but today I'm a gonna. So, look out, some of you will be tagged, but it's pretty fun to do, so do it, ok?

Here are the rules for it:
1. Link to the person that tagged you (that's me) and post these rules on your blog (like I'm doing right here).
2. Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself (on your blog, we all want to know them).
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
4. Let each person know that they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Okay, to begin (and I'm desperately trying to think up 7 new things):
1. You probably know that I have a list of fall season TV shows that I watch (ya think? With a TV show calendar just for that at the bottom of this blog? Nahhhhhh). Well, the voting's been close, very close, in my head, but my 2 favorite shows are probably "Damages" and "Mad Men", and BOTH are in ratings trouble and will probably be cancelled! I just cannot get a break from Hollywood.....
2. I happen to think it's important on some level to shower at the same time every day, so I try to do that. I fail miserably, but I do try.
3. I live with a man who abhors leftovers. I, on the other hand, have it ingrained in me to eat them so as not to be wasteful. So, guess who ends up having to eat them? Me, but I finally snapped to recruiting Reggie-Dog as my assistant on this. And I'm delegating more and more, getting more off my plate and onto his, so to speak, hehe.
4. Although I will occasionally sleep on my back, I'm mostly a side-sleeper. And, I rotate, too. (Okay, not continually.) I start out on my right side, then when I get up for my first bathroom trip, I swtich to my left side. I do this with any other bathroom trips (that varies). If I do not do this, I will wake up the next morning with all kinds of arthritic skeletal problems. My pelvis will feel bruised badly.
5. Our mail is delivered late in the afternoons, at the same time in which our neighborhood is the most active (walkers, people driving home). So, I wait until dusk to go out to my mailbox, because I don't like everyone looking at me (might have something to do with the clothes I wear on days I stay in).
6. I read my local newspaper online every day instead of subscribing. I subscribed for decades until a couple of years ago. The paper build-up and the cost caused me to just put my foot down, and I frankly have not missed it much.
7. During the time I was really ill with my 5 arthritii, I got out of the habit of following the local gossip and staying tuned into my community. When I got lots better, I decided to stay gossip-free. When my friends try to draw me back into it, I balk. I like being clueless.

Okay, that's it. Now, I'm going to post this entry, go around and find 7 other people to tag, then I will edit this post to add who I tagged.
Edited to add: Here are the girlies I have tagged!
1. Chris
2. Gail
3. Kacy
4. Kim
5. Mackey
6. Vicki
7. Sandee

And that's gonna do it for me today, because I'm not that into it, remember? {Eyeroll}

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Just a quickie today

Just posting a quick entry today, and I'm late at that. LOL It's 2 p.m. here. Here's a recent photo of my fur babies, taken Monday, I think. I've had to spend a chunk of unscheduled time babysitting my dogs. This is so not in the plan. And it really frustrates me, but they both can break my heart with one look, so I become their sucker.

Hubs was supposed to clean out their house on his last day off (Sunday, the 14th) and get it ready for cold-weather inhabitance. Yesterday, under questioning, he admitted he did not do that and then copped an attitude about it. He's into his let's-bring-all-my-job-problems-home-and-kick-the-dog-and-bitch-at-the-wifey mood, and I am looking at this from a responsibility standpoint. As in, you cannot ignore your pets just because you don't feel like dealing with it. I am physically unable to do it. (Well, I could do it, but if I did, I would irritate my pinched nerve in my neck and be in agony for days. However, I'm mulling over doing it, because it needs to be done. Oh, the joys of marriage! Not.)

My head hit the pillow last night around 1 a.m. and I slept like a hibernating bear. Woke up around 10 a.m., pretty refreshed. A few aches and pains, but a morning stretch helped me work a few of the kinks out. I will have skeletal pains due to the cold weather, but I love cold weather so much. It's very very cool here. Last night I know it got down to 39F and may have dipped lower after I fell asleep. Sheila, the smaller dog, eventually went to their house to sleep, but Reggie stayed in his chair, on top of his towels. This morning they were both up and fine, so I guess neither froze to death.

Well, I've got to run some errands and take care of some extraneous crap that's come up, so this is it for today. Hope everyone has a great Hump day!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

We Be Cool

Good morning and happy Tuesday! Guess what?

63 more days until you-know-what!

Guess what else?

Aside from buying a few materials, I have not yet started my gift-making. At all.

How about you?

Don't hate me for bringing it up! I don't want to upset anyone or make your blood pressure rise, just puttin' it out there, LOL, for myself as much as for anyone else. We have time still.

I order most of my purchases online, have for almost 5 years now. And as far as scrapbooking supplies, one store I've bought from every year, Scrappy Dreams, recently announced they are going out of business, effective 12/31/07 (Loraine, the owner, is going back to school).

Since she's closing down, Loraine's having a 50% off sale, and I placed what I guess is my final order first thing this morning. I know that I am on a no-buy Dollar Diet, but that's a working rule. As with my diet, I stray from time to time and the rule keeps me from going wacko. I can tell you, the order I just placed was one smart deal.

Let's see, I spent $25 (plus $5 shipping), and among the goodies I got are: Scenic Route Rockland papers and Capitol Hill chipboard alphas; some black Doodlebug pp's and cardstock and some yummy striped pp's; 2 Stazon inks I don't have; some Junkitz long bradz, a few Chatterbox papers I didn't have; some 7G's Brompton pp (the last of it, I think); and some Modern Textures Specialty Paper in Purple Fizz.

She has a great assortment of specialty papers, which come in real handy in certain styles of cardmaking and altering. I would have doubled my order amount buying it all up if I didn't already have most of it. Okay, I have mostly scraps left and probably should have just ordewred it all over again at these discounts, but I was trying to be good! And I wanted to buy up every Junkitz Ringz she has, but with my arthritic hands they are sometimes hard to open. I'd decided a while back to switch to the 7Gypsies ones I can get at Joann's, but the Junkitz ones are so cutely colored! {pout}

Anyway, if you enjoy shopping somewhere trustworthy, and that's kinda picked over so you really don't know what you'll find til you look, check out Loraine's store. She may carry the one thing you've been looking all over for. I'm really sad to see her close, but I totally understand, she needs to move on to the next chapter.

Well, temperatures here are nice! Our cool front moved in yesterday and we got both rain and wind bustin' down from the north. Gusts even in the middle of the night! I sleep under a window and was actually woke up once from the noise of the shrubs lashing against the pane. And, a couple of times, my house frame creaked from the gusts. Since it's a very sturdy brick house, that's a forceful gust. In fact, it's still blowing. My wind chimes are singing nonstop, LOL.

Even so, we are sorely lacking down here for seasonal color. The leaves have begun falling off our oak tree in the front yard, so there is plenty of brown to mix in with the green lawn. But I took a photo under the tree looking up, and there is only one little forlorn reddish leaf in the entire canopy! Do you see it? Is that sad or what?

Sad for me, it is. The challenge this week at Funky Photo Friday is to photog our local seasonal changes. Well, that's my one leaf! Pitiful. Guess I won't be able to play in this one.

Well, all good things must end, and I have had nothing but annoying problems since installing my music player on my blog. So, gonna have to take the player off. I'm glad I tried it out. Learned to do something new. But, for me, choosing the songs took forever and they get old real quick, playing over and over again. The perfect player would be one that chooses congs from certain styles and always shuffles them so that I don't keep hearing the sames ones. Actually, the perfect player is one that operates as a standalone and does not suck my computer resources dry, who am I kidding? Time for me to get my Creative Zen player out and just listen to that. I have never had good luck with all-in-one devices or setups of any kind.

Which brings up a good question for those of you who download songs to an mp3 player that is not an Apple iPod: where do you get your songs? Please email me or leave a comment and tell me. I need to find some new tunes.

Have a great Tuesday, everyone!

Monday, October 22, 2007

The scenery changes....

I Didn't Take this photo but I <3 it!I received this awesome fall photo in a forwarded email. I do not know who took it to credit them, but isn't it gorgeous? Living where I do, I can only dream of having scenery like this...

Thankfully, there are different kinds of scenery. The scenery in my mind, for instance. The scenery of our situations and our outlooks.

Wow, just reflecting on how crappy I felt this weekend at times, and how energized and ready to face a week full of "stuff" I feel at this moment.

Got a full night's sleep last night and woke up at 5 a.m. with Hubs. Might have helped a bit. hehe

I was in a funk and letting outside influences get me down. Also letting my aches and pains and sleeping problems dictate my happiness.

Understandable, yes. Preferable, N-O. Weathering through takes time, but when we trust and hang in there, tiny everyday miracles can change the scenery for the better.

Another way to say it is "when one door closes, another opens". I always try to remember that. Sure enough, I had some door activity in my life, LOL.

I was feeling down, feeling disconnected, anonymous, unimportant. Just because of random life. If you've been a reader here for awhile, you may know that I have a tendency to withdraw sometimes. I felt the urge to, but I remembered all that therapy advice. I chose to reach out, to blog, to post , to make a couple of phone calls and emails to nonline (there's online and there's nonline, hehe) friends, not to even mention my plight but just to interact. Helped me get away from those feelings. And I'm so thankful for those people (who don't even know what the heck I'm talking about, but that's ok).

Then, Missy decides to land from her collegiate whirlwind life and a plethoria of emails arrive in my inbox. She had no idea what I was feeling, yet there she was to the rescue, too. Urging me to create a MySpace page and to check out her new photos. So, I did both. Yup, me. I created a MySpace page, very rudimentary but it works. I'm still very confused at how to pimp it out, so maybe I won't just yet. A worthy endeavor for a later date.

Then, I decided this was the time to quit putting off compiling some tunes to listen to, so I did that. Which is why I have a playlist and music going on this blog now. It never ceases to amaze me how much music can change my mood for the better, and as I have gotten older, how much I forget to include it in my daily life. Sure hope I have learned the lesson now.

Then, I cooked a couple of good dinners for Hubs and me this weekend. Put off going to the grocery store and used what we had. Gotta love that. Dentist appointment tomorrow and I'll go Krogering afterwards, so Tuesday's my Outside Day.

My scenery tide was starting to turn, yet good things kept on happening.

I made enormous progress on getting my work papers in order. Still a ways to go, may take the rest of this whole week, but I'm on my game with it. Can't stop me now. And just as I was wondering what to do about a client who owes me money, I got a call from him. Sending me a check today. Wow, mental telepathy doesn't work that well, even.

Oh, and last night, the local weatherman gave me another great gift: a real, live cool front is hitting us this afternoon, with temps dropping to the high 40's by tonight. Do you know how great that is for us here? Yes, the front of the front has a rainy day in store, but Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are going to be clear, gorgeous and cool. Really fall, not Indian summer. For some precious hours, at least.

So, feeling relaxed for the first time in a while, when my narcolepsic drowsiness hit me about 11 p.m. last night, I succumbed immediately. Hence, the full night's sleep and eager-beaver wake up today. No, my day has not gone exactly picture-perfect according to plan, but I am happy, confident, optimistic, as is my normal tendency to be since the day I was born. So refreshing! So precious.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sunday Confessional


Visited Drea's blog by way of Mackey's and finally succumbed to that dang celebrity look-alike quiz.
ROFL, gotta say that, while I am still a bit jealous of Drea for getting Hillary as one of her look-alikes, I'm more than happy with mine.
Attention Diane, Marcia, Katherine and Kimberly: look closely, my face is in the mirror of your futures!
Get thee to the plastic surgeon, chicas, now!

It's past time for a Fitness Update from me, I know. I've sort of let things go, although I have tried to get in a minimum step count every day, and I've also recorded my steps. I've tried to take my meds and eat and drink my Daily Musts, although these have suffered a bit due to my current sleep problems. Intake is best when a schedule is followed, right?

To refresh the memory, I was going to take a bit of a break on conscious weight losing and just let my body find my current weight as its new set point. (I think that was about a week to 10 days ago.) And on that, I believe I've succeeded. Although I haven't lost any more pounds, I have stayed the same weight since beginning my break. And believe me, there have been a few times I could have (should have) gained a bit. Since that eating behavior is what tests the set point, this is a good thing, especially since I have not gained.

But, I've let my water intake decrease. I've also not drunk my green tea or eaten my yogurt every single day. Now, to my mind, I maybe could have lost a tiny bit had I just kept those two things up, ya know?

So, I'm beginning a renewed commitment to my Daily Musts today, and I'm adding the list to my sidebar in hopes of that being a motivator for me. To repeat, this list may seem like it's lightweight, but for me these little things make a big difference in my health and how I feel. And, isn't the difference usually in the details? Isn't it always the little things that count the most in the end? For me, yeppers.

I also said I was going to stop my art making through the end of October, which I have. I was going to start going through all the accumulated piles of crap in the public areas of my house and put/clean/throw away. And I've been working on it! I was also going to tie up my loose work ends and print/package/deliver/mail my last group of tax returns, and on that goal I have not done well. Therefore, my focus this coming week will be on that, and then back to the general cleaning.

Sounds like a good plan for me... What are your goals this week?

Whatever your goals, I hope you accomplish them. Here's to great upcoming week for us all!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Here's Where I Explain

Still on the Line, Still Doin' Fine
So, anyway, I found a You Tube video of Glen Campbell performing "Witchita Lineman" on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour back in 1967 or so, and I proudly offer it for your enjoyment. Think back to a more innocent and simpler time with less expectation, and you'll be fine. I love to listen to it.

I was watching Nightline last night and Annie Lennox was on there talking about her playlist (a segment where they asked famous musicians what's on their playlist of all time). Interesting choices, I thought. Aretha of course, the Beatles, Bob Marley, Joni Mitchell. All so worthy. The songs of theirs that she chose I thought to be a bit different (her Beatles tune for instance was "I am the Walrus", not ever on my list.).

But she floored me with her choice of Glen Campbell for "Wichita Lineman". O My God. Could she have been any closer to my memories of growing up than if she lived with us? You see, my parents and I are all Arkansas-born as is Glen, so when he hit the scene as a main act (having spent many years pickin' for recording greats prior to his big solo break) with that song and with "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", well, let's just say he made a huge stir. He was such a presence and a great guitar player and such a smooth voice. And polite and cute.

Uh, this was the mid-60's, people. Didn't take much for an image back then.

Anyway, Annie starts singing it a capella and gorgeously, so I had to google it myself. My mom had a crush on Glen like nobody's biz, although not one as intense as her crush on Elvis back when he first came out in the 50's (she was not a fan of the bloated and sequined Elvis). Frankly, I think she a crush on the pelvis, but I'll never know cuz she's not confessing.

Anyway, Glen's album and that song played on our stereo for hours each day. I knew "Lineman" like the back of my hand. And I took a liking to him, too, especially since we got to see him so much on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (one of my passions).

But, as all things go, the dark ugliness of ravaging time needs an ear, too. Sad to say, this next video is Glen many moons and many more fifths of whiskey later, with the Stone Temple Pilots. He manages to pull it off, but it ain't quite the same, is it?

And that brings me to how the Different Drummer (that's moi) can beat her own beat and support the Music (that's you out there who are my online friends who do choose to pursue publication and design team spots).

I'm very proud and happy for my friends when they achieve accomplishments of that sort. Rachael blogged this week about seeing her layout in Scrapbooks Etc. Magazine, and I'm thoroughly thrilled for her, posted as much on her blog. Kim has been selected for the Memory Purses team for the holidays (and why not permanently, is what I think, frankly). I also posted congrats. Noelia had her art cards lifted for the Member Inspiration at 2peas by a Garden Girl! How awesome! And I left her some praise, too.

Just wanted to put that out there, to avoid any misunderstanding. What I wrote yesterday was about me only, and why I can't march to that beat. Your mileage may vary, though, and viva la difference!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Freestyle Friday

Sorry I'm late to the gate today. I've been having trouble deciding on a topic, all morning. Yes no yes no. Maybe. LOL

I just gave up and decided to catch up on the blog reading I was behind on, and now I have enough of a topic gameplan.

Lynn had a good challenge from 2peas on hers. The gist of it is, share four things about yourself that make you the person you are today as a creator/artist. Lynn's answers were pretty dang good, too. I am similar to her, it turns out, on a couple of them:

1. Like Lynn, I love color! It's what first grabs me visually, with anything.
(I also am a procrastinator -- and I work slowly, deliciously so, I love to dwell in my creativity, it gives me pleasure, and I love variety and trying new things, too. But I'm going to try to think of 3 other things about me that she didn't mention per se, so as to not be a total jackstress of her ideas, LOL)

2. I'm a noncomformist. Been thinking about that trait in me lately. I was at Mackey's blog, where I contemplated it again. More about it later, but I think that trait in me has been what has kept me from playing into the whole design team and publication route during my time in that little world. So much conforming required, unless you are touched by luck. Because I'm not prone to conformity, I've been compelled to create originally, which most of the time means it's something you're not likely to see elsewhere but not necessarily cutting edge or what the majority would like. Oh well, glad those things I don't do are not a job requirement, LOL.

3. My tendency is to be a perfectionist and I fight that every day of my life. I fight it because it's so dang limiting. I have made progress, in that every thing I create has at least one flaw and usually several, and I keep going with it and just punt (figure out how to cover it or work around it). I don't think I've ever created anything that was perfectly done, and now I'm so used to punting that I am getting used to it. For a perfectionist, that's real progress, LOL.

4. I favor form and function. It's the practical teachers' kid in me, having been raised that way. I often joke that if I won the lotto, most of it would be saved because I just don't have it in me to spend it all. Too thrifty. I think that is why I packrat stuff. Why buy something when you can packrat it for later use? When I look at altered art creations, the ones I'm really drawn to are not only beautiful but practical, useful. I have very few things that are just purely pretties.

The Different Drummer

I've had times in my life when I had to conform, and when I did it, I did it well. The accounting profession is not one for sticking out and doing your own thing. It's all about conforming to the theories, the processes, the consistent steps. And after almost 30 years, I know what I know like the back of my hand. It actually comforts me to do it when I'm in the work groove. Think Rainman here, I'm not kidding! LOL Well, okay, I'm not autistic, but accounting is so one, two, three, one, two, three, that it almost makes me feel like a number (Seger fans, Unite!) That's one side of my personality and brain. Then, there's the creative side, which I never knew I had until about 5 years ago. I've always been a good writer, but to me that was more analytical and cerebral, thinking; not messy, chaotic, feeling.

It wasn't until I got into scrapbooking and ATC's and altered art that I realized their artistic connections to writing, and that I could indeed be both right and left brained. I am left-handed in a right-handed world, and therefore I'm already trained to be ambi-brained. And it goes back a ways. Even as a child, my highest aptitudes were always math and English. And in college, I really wanted to major in accounting and minor in art, but they wouldn't really let me do that. They were right - what do you do with that combo, anyway? LOL I settled for minoring in marketing with an emphasis in writing. Face it, I was all over the board. And always have been. Too many things fascinate me.

One thing about getting older is getting comfortable in your own skin, and that's where I think my noncomformist ways have helped. Now or never, ain't no dress rehearsal, real deal. So, why not be me? I've been real lucky to have a loving Hubs who indulges me and lets me do my own thing. And since I'm such a thrifty soul, I can do it without breaking the bank. I think it hurts me though, when it comes to losing weight and stopping smoking. Conforming to societal standards are huge motivators for modifying those behaviors, and I don't bite on them. Mine will have to come from within me. The weight loss has been happening because I truly want to more than I want to taste delicious food, but the cigarette is still too enjoyable.

Anyway, there have been times in my past when I resented and even hated my nonconformist tendencies, but I'm glad to now be able to embrace it at this point.

Like the man said, I yam what I yam, and what I'm not, I don't got. LOL, have a good Friday, everybody!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Lost in Thought Today

Already. And it's only 8 a.m. my time. Of course, I've been up since 2 a.m. Yes, Ladies and Ladies, you are watching a sleep disorder in action. Not like it's fatal. We manage. It just really leads to a random life. Just as a structured life is restrictive, so is a random one. Beats death, though, bigtime.

I think the biggest frustration I have is not being able to really plan a schedule I can stick to. Like, today I'm supposed to go get my teeth cleaned. Well, that ain't gonna happen, because I do not have a personal driver (and I, unlike Brittnee Spears, have a good excuse as to why I don't have one). I will need the driver to get there because my appointment's at 2 p.m. and I'll be super-drowsy by then, we are talking half a bottle of Robitussen drowsy. If I stayed up that long. That's only 12 hours since I woke up, too. But I'm drowsy now. I know I got 6 hours of sleep, because I forced myself to stay up until the end of Pushing Daisies last night. You'd think I could last 6 hours awake without wanting to take a nap, wouldn't you?

So, I am waiting to call the dentist at 9 when they open to reschedule. Hubs and I don't care for the lady who works the desk, so the thought of giving her a teeny bit more work to do is satisfying. (I have a very good reason for disliking her. When Hubs goes, she bullies him into paying too much and then says we are not overpaid. This forces me to have to do a complicated account reconciliation to prove to her that we are overpaid. Only then will she back down. One time she even laughed and said, you're right. Without even looking at my recon! I was ticked.) So, I will get my jollies today by messing up her appt. book just a tiny bit and keeping her from having a 100% show-up rate day. If her boss were not a good dentist, we'd be gone from there, however, dentists we like are very few and far between in my area. Most are of the dental chain store varieties, or old timers who aren't on our plan and can therefore charge us whatever they want to. But then, when you have Marlene the Billing Bully (that's my name for her...Hubs uses another B-word name) trying to collect what she wants to charge, what good is having your dentist be on your plan and supposedly limited to the negotiated rate? Yeah, please do not tell me we are not already on socialized medicine. It's just handled by the insurance companies....badly, badly, badly. And that's comparative to the government-run Medicare, too. I do my parents' Medicare billing and they can be brutal, but we are usually talking about a difference of $35.00 in the end, not $530.00, which is the amount Hubs overpaid by this last time.

But, I digress. Lots of reasons there why I don't think today is a good day to get my teeth cleaned, LOL. I would rather be asleep.

Actually, I'm kind of tormented by something. Well, mildly, heavy on the mildly, tormented. Okay, troubled. 100% troubled. Really wishing I had the balls to fully discuss it here, but alas, my balls escape me at the moment. So, I will have to suffer in silence. Still trying to talk myself into "be patient, things might turn out better than you think". We shall see. All I will say about it is, if you love something, let it go. And forget the other part about it coming back to you, in case it doesn't. (We are not talking about people here, but creative ideas.) Now see, I've already said too much, LOL.

Well, as much as I'm not in the mood for doing a tag (sorry, Gina), I said I would so I will. I may not tag people by name, though. I rarely ever do that. Something about it smells like a chain letter to me, LOL, and I don't do those.

Here are the rules which you must abide by if you are tagged.
1. Link to your tagger (Gina) and post these rules.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself: some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post and list their names (linking to them).

4. Let them know they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment at their blogs. Um, no. If you read this, consider yourself tagged, okay?
1. I am a nonconformist, have been all my life except for brief periods where I tried hard to conform and succeeded but felt miserable.
2. I've recently discovered that living the artistic life and mindset has changed my mechanism for being motivated to do the everyday mundane things. I used to be able to get interested in stuff like laundry and ironing. Now, all I think about is, I could be creating, and my chores all seem like drudgery. Having to learn how to re-motivate, the artist way.
3. I have extremely strange sleeping habits (wow, I bet you didn't know that!). In fact, sometimes I cause my own insomnia problems by getting up after only 2 hours, because that's when I get the first urge to tinkle, like clockwork, and if I go back to bed I then go into the deep sleep that can sometimes last 6-8 hours straight. And I fight it if I cannot aleep that long for some reason.
4. I've become a bit of a germaphobe, understandably. I always spray my nose with my Nasonex prior to going somewhere and I never go there without my Purell hand sanitizer or wipes, which I use immediately after going where it is I'm going. Then as soon as I get home, I wash my hands and swab the insides of my nostrils with rubbing alcohol, just in case the Nasonex wasn't working.

More weirdness, eh? ...thinking...

5. Um, okay, lately I've developed a liking to using a gluestick on papers in my art journal. Not on my scrapbook layouts, though, but maybe. Sometimes I use it on cards, but not alone. I have a slight horror of something falling off a card I made. And gluestick is not that flexible a glue.
6. I cannot stand roaches and bugs like most other women, but if there is one in my house, I am all over it in attack mode with my fly swatter, my bug spray and my paper towel and shoe. I've been known to yell "Die!!!" just as I'm going in for the kill. I began behaving this way many moons ago as a teen, when I was woke up one night by something brushing on my cheek. Turned on my light and it was a huge flying roach on the wall. Something in me just snapped, right then and there. Up til then, I'd been a screaming pansy about any kind of critter.
7. I underwent intensive allergy testing at a prestigious clinic in Houston a decade or so ago, so I know without question that I am highly allergic to shellfish. Yet, my favorite eat-out meal if I can get a good one, is fried shrimp. I will eat it until I pop, then have almost a full-blown throat closure in the car on the way home. Every time. Bonus: And I have learned over the years to do meditation and deep breathing to open my throat back up, too. No joke. It's always a struggle, but it works. I can also get my heart to stop fluttering and beating fast, whenever I have a panic attack, which is oddly usually when I am run down and worn out.

Okay, glad that's over with. Have a great Thursday, everyone, and take my word for it, don't think about things too hard today. (winkwink)

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Watery Wednesday Wrap-ups

I do hope those of you who read this blog remembered that I was up to my arss in tax returns and would not be counted on to blog with any regularity. Just in case you thought I drowned....

I almost did, but only figuratively. Man, the procrastinators on my client list are just gonna have to speed things up next year, cuz I'm getting too old for double all-niters (yep, I did not sleep from Saturday evening until Monday afternoon, then took a nap and stayed up again Monday night, just barely making the midnight deadline on my last 2 returns). When folks bring you moving boxes full of craps on the Thursday and Friday before a Monday deadline, ya kinda haveta stay up. But, no worries, they will get theirs, for I will remember this at invoicing time! LOL

Bad thing is, I did not have time to do my usual thorough start-to-finish on each client, so all my paperwork is still to be done for them, like document file copies, printing, collating, packaging and invoicing. And that all needs to be done this week in order to get paid before Christmas, because it starts all over again right after that! And plus, I want some time off. I want to at least pretend to be a seasonal worker! LOL

So anyway, back to drowning...good segueway to the one thing I did do yesterday (Tuesday) besides sleep all.day.long. I took off with my camera and snapped some shots of water for this week's Funky Photo Friday challenge. I really had fun doing this, although it was more difficult to get interesting shots than I anticipated. Once I figured out to use my zoom, though, it got easier. Didn't get up early enough to catch sunrise and didn't want to wait long enough to get sunset, so I had to settle for overcast midday. Then, I took the photos and editied them in PaintShopPro, some lightly, some heavily. So, I learned some new moves, not that I'm gonna remember them, LOL. One can hope.

That first shot (above) looks like a waterfall, right? Well, It's not. It's water rushing out of a bayou dredging outflow pipe into a containment pond. What I did was zoom in on the water when I snapped it. Then, back at my computer, I used the curves function to add some heavy duty whitecaps. I love how it came out, but I confess I did not know beforehand that I was going to do that. I was just playing around with the different things in my PSP. I had read of lots of people using this functions, so I thought, what does this do? Me likey!

This next photo (at left) is just barely edited with an unsharp mask and a tiny bit of brightening. This is a tributary gully creek that winds through my city and has the infamous nickname Gator Gully. More than a few alligators have been sighted on its banks over the years. There's luckily a safe concrete perch near the banks where I stood to take the shot, so no Aimeslees were sacrificed for it, LOL.

I have to admit, I had the most fun editing this photo (at left). This is just a boring old shot of our dirty brown bayou and bank near my house that flows into Galveston Bay. Boring shots like these make me want to glitz them up, so I went exploring in PSP's Effects. This one was done using the Rotating Mirror Reflection Effect. What it does is rotate part of your image however you tell it. This one is a very slight rotation, clockwise -- can you see it? What is cool is that it created a digital smush in the upper righthand quadrant that kind of looks like there's a buddhist fairy with wings sitting there on the grass. Click on any of these for a larger view.

Well, I have to say that during my overtime at work I almost literally ached to do some creative playing. I missed it that much. And I even missed blogging. Yet, no rest for the weary. As I explained, I'll be working on finishing up the paperwork, tomorrow it's to the dentist for a cleaning, and then I will be on vacation until November 1. Not from blogging, I'll still blog daily (ok, that's the plan). But I won't be crafting for that time. The crafting supplies are going to get packed up and put away, and I'm going to tackle the remaining parts of our house reorganization.

My goal is to have most of it done by Oct. 28th, which is the next day off for DH. I need to move my computer and internet cable to my front office from the family room, as well as clean up all the accumulated crap from the family room and the front dining room and office. Then, once that goal is met, I can work in my spare time on cleaning out the back 10' x 22' room behind the garage and making it into our fitness gym! I am so jazzed at the thought of getting that done that the mere visualization of it is enough to get me moving, even when I'm in pain. Hubs wants it badly too, and we really only have this remaining window of time open, since I need to use Missy's room to store stuff in while I move other stuff around. And she will be home for Thanksgiving. So, the craftings gotta go for now. Also, I won't be online as much, but that's going to be a good thing, because I've noticed that my old bones are less painful the less time I spent at the keyboard, ya know?

So, you have all been told! LOL Please, if ya see me online alot, feel free to whip me and yell at me to get back on plan! I just feel that if I get somewhere with this, my life's gonna improve to the next level, cuz all of this clutter and stuff not being where I want it to be is bugging the caniption outta me. And being able to use all of our gym equipment, OMG, I literally cannot wait!

Have a great HUMPerdink DAY, everybody. (Gina, I will do your tag on Thursday, okay?)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Ozone Man's Revenge

Former Vice President Al Gore Jr. was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize today along with a United Nations panel that monitors climate change for their work educating the world about global warming and advocating for political action to stop it.

read more | digg story
Good Friday, everybody. I'd like to take a moment and congratulate former Vice President Al Gore, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize today for his work on educating the world about global warning. The Oscar, the Emmy and now the Nobel. For an honorable public servant whose heart was literally broken by losing to Dubya the way he did in 2000 (current polling says still about half of us think he was robbed), I believe that he deserves the fruits of his present labors. Do I want him to run for president in 2008? No. Do I think he will? I really don't think he will. I think I want him to be happy, happy and content in what he's doing now. Look to former Pres. Jimmy Carter (another Nobel winner for Middle East peace brokering) to see what really can be done, what really can matter more than the White House. And that's that. Congrats and enjoy, Mr. Vice President.

Scrapbook'em, Danno!
Well, my brain is painful from too much toxic taxable income. I feel like I've been locked up for too long and made to watch too much porn (which would be *any*). Such is the accounting life. Concentration's awfully hard to come by. Just a few more days left, then I can take a vacay from Deadlining: rest, relax, recover, and slowly pick up the pieces of the packaging of the paperwork I don't finish by deadline, since it's mostly an electronic filing job nowadays. (Versus when I began, in 1983, when we did all tax returns *by hand* literally, no computer involved at all, just the poor typist to type each final copy on her IBM Selectric.)

And, I want to apologize for the next 3 days, in advance. I may or may not be able to keep blogging (like today, part of this post was written at around 6 a.m. But then I fell asleep before finishing, sleep I desperately needed after staying up working wayyyy too long). So here it is almost 10p.m. and I'm just now finishing this post, on a break from working again. Who knows when and how I'll be able to fit my blogging in, but by Tuesday I should be back on schedule, a more luxurious and slower-paced schedule I might add. So, please bare with me....

So, anyway, I'm feeling near death mentally, but I completely made it worse last night by getting involved in lurking on several (probably a dozen or more) message board threads that were abuzz about the latest scandal involving Creating Keepsakes Magazine's Hall of Fame 2007 winners, or rather, one in particular. I decided not to name names or provide links, but if you just go to 2peas' message board index and search the Pub or the NSBR forums for "CK", "HOF", you'll find plenty of threads.

Seems the scrapper in question broke a CK rule by using professional photos of her taken by a former HOF'er, and this is a violation of the rules. However, the HOF book has been puiblished and released, so it's not really effective to strip the scrapper of her title...it's just too late. Plus, in my opinion, it is not really right to lay the blame anywhere other than at CK's feet for not disqualifying her. She ended up breaking the rules, but do we really really know for sure what her mindset was on that when she did it? Did she just disregard the rules or did she have a brain fart about them? I know I've had some brain fart doozies in my time, where it appeared there was no way in hell I could have forgotten something yet I sure did. Honestly and totally did. So, while I kinda want to judge her, I'm not going to. And frankly, the girl is super-talented. That's a whole nother can of worms about how I'd feel if she was not worth the title (and I doubt she'd be in this position at all if she were not worth it...)

Anyway, lots of drama and feelings over this, but I predict it'll end up coming to nothing. And life will go on. Should it play out that way? No, but that's what will happen. As many scrappers as there are who will begin to see the program for what it really is and be disgusted, there are tons more who will only see opportunity knocking for their own dreams to come true. Cutthroat competition at its ugly finest.

I tell ya, I've never been so relieved to not be caught up in all that publication / design team ambition right now. I've never really been interested at all in that route. I saw long ago that most of it is done for the income statement bottom line and the egos. I apparently have a radar for noticing kissing-up, shameless plugs and other assorted shallow gestures. Yes, it feels good to see more scrappers seeing that, but I do sincerely feel bad for those who bought the dream, have tried to keep it ethical and pure, and worked their little hearts out to obtain HOF and other titles honestly and on their own merits. It's not a large group but they are out there. Many of them are posting their guts out right now. I wish eventual peace for them on this, whether they come to look at it as I do or not.

But even a mega site like 2peas is but a drop in the bucket to the number of scrappers as a whole. That was brought home to me personally when I joined my IRL Saturday group. A lot of scrappers don't even get online, much less have a blog. Yeah, who's the dummy here? They are scrapping layouts! They're like, Ali / Donna / Stacy who? Oh, yeah, I've read this or that book. End of discussion. No celebrity-love, gossip-hounding, or other real time wasters to keep them from you know, actually scrapping.

And ever since 2Peas was taken over by the Kaboose people, it has been losing members to places like SIStv and Digitalk. Such is the evolution of social cultures. My hope is that it makes 2Peas a bit more like my kind of place, with down-to-earth folk who like to share their creations in a nonjudgemental, noncometitive way, because we've worked hard as heck on our stuff and just want to connect and share with others who understand why we do it. Like the old days. I doubt it'll ever become a pure version of that hope, but even if it approaches it somewhat I'll be happy.

Daily Card Trick
This card has my hearty-heart. Doesn't that woman look like she could actually be a real relative of mine? Gotta love it. She's actually just a magazine clipping. And I have tons upon tons of these Creative Imaginations heritage diecut embellies. They are so old that I believe they were early purchases of mine, which would put them circa 2004-2005, because back then I was convinced you couldn't do a heritage page without them. Hehehe, what a greenhorn I was. So, they've entered my pile of vintage materials. I believe that here they will finally be used. You'll see this kind of card again, that's a promise (hope you are happy about this, lol).

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Oh My Heck!

Usually my days are comprised of minutes that move slower than turtles, but this week things are going fast at a dizzying speed! It couldn't be the 9 tax returns I have left to do with a deadline of Monday, could it? rofl

Anyway, when things get this busy, there's always something I forget. Like in yesterday's post, I forgot to include some information that was very very important to me to post. Of course, I forgot to, right?

Instant Replay?
I am re-displaying this card from yesterday, because I used a Maria Bell sketch as my inspiration, and I totally forgot to cite that. Many apologies, Maria. I happen to have a saved image file of the sketch, which I've shown right next to my card. I had planned to get busy during October using her sketches to make what I'm calling Maria Cards, but her dang sketch site is temporarily down and it's killing me! Just goes to show you never appreciate things til they are deprived from you, right? LOL Really, I always appreciated her sketches, I just never got my act together to make some cards before now. Ten months, that's all it took. Sheesh! Hurry up and get that domain name, Maria, ppplllleeeeezzzzeeee!!!!!!! winkwink

Daily Card Trick
Excuse me for being old-fashioned, but this card makes me giddy! LOL I love to look at it and am going to rue the day I part with it. Love that music stamp I used on the tag, the image of the woman, the quote, the colors, and I currently have a love affair going on with Colorbox fluid chalk ink cat eyes (which I've had for a couple of years, sheesh again). I had always worried about the ink transferring or rubbing off, but I find that if I let it dry long enough, then take a tissue and gently rub it or lightly burnish the ink, it takes care of that pretty well. Tell me, what do you think about my card today? Hope you like this vintage style, cuz I'll be making loads of them, hehe. You were just warned.....

I am Stuck on Rutless, Cuz Ruts Don't Stick On Me
Today's 2peas blogger challenge asks: Are you a person who will go out of your norm to try something new at least once. Or stay with that your comfortable with?

Oh boy, I think I'm allergic to staying the same for too long, in certain areas. Now, my clothes and my furnishings? They could stay the same for a decade, rofl, and some parts of them have. That's "classic" ya know, winkwink. But my hair, my organization, my decorations and arrangements, my art...all fair game to moving around. Even my blogs, you know that! So yeah, I try new stuff. A lot. All in all though, I'd say I'm about half and half. Some things will never change in my world, by choice. Face it, I'm just weird. And I love it.

In China but Close to Home
I hope this doesn't tear me up talking about it, but I was watching ABC Evening news like usual the other day, and on came a story about a special needs kid who is competing in the Special Olympic World Games this week in China. He's from Richland Hills, Texas and his name is Houstin Gardiner and I'll never forget him. They focussed on him, his history, his bravery, his story. He earned a gold and a silver, and when you watch him on the bars you think he's at the real show, he's that good. Interesting guy, really sad history, he's special needs because of shaken baby syndrome, biological parents were likely drug addicts. He was adopted, though, by great people and he's blossomed beautifully, just needs a bit more time than the average person.

I teared up something awful, worse than watching one of those old AT&T commercial, lemmetellya. Well, I had to google him to spell his name right, and you are never gonna believe what I discovered? 8 other kids in the American delegation to those games ARE FROM THE TOWN I LIVE IN. It floored me. Plus, I freakin recognized 2 of them from their pics. They live in a half-way house / assisted living group home around the corner from me! Boy, I was bawling then. I have a soft spot in my heart for kids who have special needs. It's an automatic trigger on my Mama Bear hormones, what can I say? I'd never be able to work or volunteer around them, though. I tried once and could not keep my emotions in check. Anyway, please join me in wishing these kids ALL the BEST and may every kid win a medal! (I went by the house those two live at and asked just to make sure. It's them all right. They are supposed to call me when they get home. They like ice cream and I'm gonna take them out for a scoop at MacDonald's.) Oh GAWD, where are those Kleenex.......

Catchya later, Ladies! Have your best Thursday ever!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Thanks for the Memories

I just had to copy and paste this post I made over at 2peas this morning. I went down Memory Lane (child of the 50's and 60's) for a pea who was doing a book of me about her own childhood and I ended bookmarking that thread because so many peas my age replied and here I was thinking I was the oldest living pea, LOLOL.
Here's what I posted:
"I'm a 1956 baby. I remember most of what everyone has already posted and I only had time to skim, but off the top of my head, memories of my childhood years (and apologies if it's already been listed):

*Captain Kangaroo every morning

*Malto Meal for breakfast

*My dolls were Chatty Cathy and Tiny Tears

*Jewelry boxes with the ballerina who twirled to music when you opened it

*Saving your money in first a real china piggy bank you had to smash to get the money out of, and later a Thing battery-operated bank (from the Addamms Family tv show) - it would grab the coin from you.

*Bolting out the door in the morning and not returning home until you were hungry or it was dark-thirty.

*Schwinn bicycles, often with a wire basket, horn, mirror and back fender you could haul your friend around on

*going to private kindergarten because there was no public

*huge big-sister-type crushes at one time or another on Annette Funicello, Patty Duke, Hayley Mills...and just aching to be Ann Marie (Marlo Thomas) when I grew up!

*Playing Chinese jump rope in the 4th grade before school, or jacks (huge!), marbles, checkers, hula hoops, metal skates you strapped on with a key - you lost that key, you were dead

*having to talk on the hall telephone and only for a few minutes (party line and only one phone in the whole house - finally got my own phone extension for 8th grade)

*Keds and PF flyer tennis shoes and that was it, and the ankle socks with the big-ass furry balls on the heel

*mercurachrome on scrapes and cuts .. finally they came out with Bactine spray

*getting whipped or popped or spanked for any little thing

*Go go boots, Bobby helmets, mini-skirts, fishnet hose, Mary Quant, Bonnie Bell make-up, beauty shop perms that made your scalp sting for days and stank too

*shaving your legs for the first time with your dad's double edged razor (there was nothing else), and of course cutting yourself good (I stupidly wiped the blade off with my thumb, ouch)

*I was in 2nd grade when JFK was assassinated; my dad came to get me at school. Everyone and everthing was just at a stop and in shock.

*Exercising to Jack LaLanne on tv at 6:30 every morning

*Charter member of the original Mickey Mouse Club

*Charter member of the Beatles fan club

*Only diet drinks were Tab and Fresca

*American Bandstand on TV

*camping out at the 7-11 to buy Tiger Beat and Teen magazines every month

*The year that Man from U.N.C.L.E. and Time Tunnel were both on tv at the same time - so unfair (no VCR's)

*Straightening my hair by wrapping it it around my head or rolling on orange juice concentrate cans.

*Drying my hair under a beauty shop type dryer (no handhelds yet)

*Wearing hose with garter belts until sometime in junior high (pre-pantyhose)

*No pants allowed at school until I was a high school sophomore. "

Okay, I wanna go lve back then. Waaaa! It really was fun! And since the speas blogger challenge for today was do I subscribe to any kits?... And no I don't... then this "challenge" was so much more fun.

Thanks for all the advice
from yesterday's post. Reading all your comments and emails made me really think about it. I hadn't even considered that Diego might wig out and be violent. I plan to call Missy tonight and discuss the possibility, to develop a game plan, just in case.

Daily Card Trick
I picked this notecard to show cuz it kind of fits in with my girlhood memories. I used one of my Fiskars border punches (eeks, I have 6 of them, guess I went kinda overboard on those, but I'm going to use every one of them now cuz I had fun). I don't know if you can see, but I made the punch wave be parallel to the wave of text - cool, huh? I've started combining my artist trading card stash with my scrapbooking stash and coming up with these artsy kind of cards. And me likey, how about you? Since I just had to buy the entire Melissa Francis line of vintage diecut signs, I will probably be making these til Hell freezes over and they will call me the card lady because I'll be giving everyone I meet a card just to get rid of them all, LOLOLOL. Eeeewwww, hope that was a joke, eh?

Speaking of Punches
Yesterday for about an hour, I thought I was in the Twilight Zone. I keep my punches in one of those hanging clear vinyl pocket shoe keepers, and I was looking for my scalloped square punch -- a big honkin punch, highly visible -- but I was coming up short, no clues either. I went through the entire house, nothing. This went on for about 20-30 minutes, until it occurred to me that I'd just assumed what it looked like and I might be wrong. I was envisioning it as a Marvy Uchida punch. 5 minutes later I see it on a table in my craft room. It's a McGill punch, so my brain never registered it as the missing punch.

Scarey when it happens to ya. Plus, tonight, I called my doctor's lab results line for my blood test results and their instructions, and I entered the wrong number for my own SSN. That's a first, literally. Being an accountant, I am a numbers person and remember all of them. I suppose it might be all downhill from here and just a matter of time now before I lose it (what I feel like anyway).

Well, this lil dab'll do ya surely til tomrrow, LOL yathink? Have a great Hump Day!!!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

How Would You Feel?

Seriously, I would like to hear your answers. Here's the deal: I was talking on the phone to my Missy girl Monday, chatting away about this and that. Suddenly, her voice lowered and she became serious.

"Mom." You know the tone, like let me get your attention, please. "I have something I want to tell you but I don't want to upset you."

Oh dear, now how does a Mom not succumb to a good pre-freak-out upon hearing those words? Still, I just couldn't see anything being all that bad, as I've been managing to stay intimately informed of her world, comparatively. So, I drew a deep breath and replied, "Okaaaay. Shoot."

Well, she proceeded to describe how the ex-boyfriend Diego destroyed -- tore up -- all the layouts I'd created for him. For weeks now, he's been acting like a lost soul, in control one minute and wildly nuts the next. He's left numerous nasty / goofy comments on Missy's MySpace; it often seems to Missy that he stalks her at meal times in the cafeteria or en route to class while acting like it's random chance; and a mutual friend of theirs from high school calls and extends way too many invites to come visit their dorm room to hang out (like the old days), promising Diego will not be there yet there he is every time Missy has accepted as if the friend is being used to force a meeting, thereby making it really difficult to continue to be friends all the way around.

Nothing he's done has deterred Missy from her desire to remain broken up and in fact his actions confirm to her her decision was the correct one. So, I guess him destroying the layouts was a lash-out in frustration or something. Seems a little too overboard to me, though, since the ones he has up at school do not have Missy in them at all.

At first, my response was to just shrug my shoulders and say, well it figures. As if, I don't care. But as yesterday wore on, I did care. A Lot. And I did not feel a stitch of anger, but just a spreading sadness.

Missy continued, "I feel bad cuz I know that although you support my decisions 100%, you were sad we broke up cuz you were really fond of him."

So true, so true.

Which is why, I suppose, I am feeling sadness about what he did.

Not only did he tear them up, he threw them on his floor and left them there. She saw them and confronted him about it. He said he couldn't stand to look at them. She said, you could have given them back to my Mom. She would have liked to have layouts of you in her scrapbook. She's still very fond of you and was sad we broke up.

She said he didn't even seem to care. Well, geez, I know that says more about him and how he handles stuff than it does about whether he wants to hurt me or not, so I don't believe he wanted to hurt me. It just saddens me that my creations can lead such a precarious life once they leave me. Or be thought of as just so much paper.

Ever had anything similar happen to you? Just curious. Because now I'm not that willing to scrap for the new boyfriend, even though Missy has already asked me. Or for her roomie, even though she's asked me. Makes me really wish I knew how to do digital scrapbooking and enjoyed it. It suddenly made me realize that you never really give those away. You just give away copies.

I guess I need to sit down and discuss with Missy, and see if digital will do for those two friends. Wow, never thought this kind of thing would be my motivation to actually cross the scrap platform. Just goes to show we never know, from day to day, do we?

Okay, Channel Change! lol

Daily Card Trick
I said I was gonna drag them out, one a day, so here we go. Birthday card for one of my nephews who turns 11 today. Happy Birthday, Teddy!
I must be getting hard-core in my use of scraps, because I didn't even try to mesh old with new on this card, even in the midst of my boy-card phobia. My approach was remarkably hard-ass. Like, I didn't even put real buttons over the fake ones like I usually do. To be fair, though, that's a kind of girly treatment, anyway. I chose the postage stamp deco scissors to trim the edges of these 3 year old die cut card elements, and cobalt blue ink for the edges. Also a couple of Dymo tape words to fill in for words I didn't have die cuts for. Yup, the creating went fast too.

I need to whack out about 30 dozen of these kind of cards and make some kind of material dent in my scraps and stash. Sure. On my To-Do voodoo, fo sho.

Well, the need to take the trash cans to the curb is calling my name, so I'll close this for today and play Beat the Garbage Truck, hehe. Hubs conveniently forgot it was trash day, I guess. That's okay, I'm the Crack-Filler-Inner, doncha know. Have a great Tuesday, everybody!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Cutting Edge, My Arss...

You are a pair of SCISSORS!You're cutting edge, baby! You cut through life with ease, always keeping others on the edge. You have the power to simplify things by just cutting them out. But scissors beware - you may cut some of the important things out of your life without realizing it, in your need to keep trim!
Take this quiz!

Quizilla |

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I cannot remember now where I saw this...whose blog it was on, LOL. I'd definitely give credit if I could remember. Anyway, I took the quiz and I'm scissors. Cutting edge, oh right. LOL Maybe a couple of times I've used stuff a certain way or ressurrected some technique a few months before several other people use it too, but I just figured that was serendipity, people all getting the same idea randomly. I still think that, LOL.

I'm having sleep issues again. My body clock rocks along normally, on the 16-hour wake schedule, but then goes too long after a few days. I struggle to keep it from being 20 or 24 hours, but I can never win. I try harder, to force myself to sleep at the same x hour every night, to no avail. I haven't had success in years and years. How's that done again? LOL

It's actually caused by the combo of my meds: they would make me sleep more if I didn't fight them and it ends up causing me insomnia.

So anyway, I stayed up last night working on tax returns and I'm feeling punch drunk now. I've been trying to get photos of the cards I did Saturday edited and uploaded all.morning.long. No luck yet. Things are moving in slow motion, you know what I mean? (I can still type tho, that's 2nd nature as long as my arthritis isn't acting up in my fingers.)

I guess I'll show those cards tomorrow, or maybe all this week, just to have something every day to show.

I went over to 2peas and looked at the blog challenges to get the questions, but really, none of them since Friday have seemed to apply to me or whatever. One asked about scrapping plans this weekend: none. The next one asked what one technique I use on layouts: none, I'm all over the map. And another asked about where I go to attend crops: I don't. The closest to that is my Saturday group that I've only been to twice since we started back up in September, and that's more of an educational or workshop thing. I never "crop" there. I've never really done crops.

I've been surfing around to writing blogs lately, in my spare moments. I kind of feel that's where I'll evolve to next. You may or may not know that I freelance when I can. A couple of months ago, I was in the running for ghost-writing a book. Found out last week I didn't get it, but came really close. The editor told me I needed to write more online about my life and get out of limiting myself to a scrapping blog. So I've been lurking around at other writers' blogs to see how they do it, and it's fascinating to me.

This is one of three gorgeous fall photos I was forwarded recently in an email from a friend. I'm so jealous of folks who are getting their fall color changes now. Cuz we aren't. Pout. So, a photo has to be the next best thing for me.

So I've been lurking those blogs. No way I'll ever be able to rehab this one to that purpose, so it looks like a second blog in my future. Again. LOL I've been putting it off thinking about this, but I really want to get started on it. Thinking I'll do it on Wordpress, so many writer blogs there.

Well, I probably contributed nothing of value today, but I did want to make an appearance. I see a nap in my future.....LOL (hmm, wonder how I knew..... winkwink)