Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I spoke too soon!

Well, it was a great holiday until the night of my last post. My sis ended up getting some sort of virus and was very, very sick all night and into the next day. The following day my mom had to go to the ER for tingling and numbness on her left side. Needless to say I spent a bit of time taking care of both of them. I'm not complaining... I felt horrible for both of them since it was still their Christmas holiday, too. I'm glad I got to help take care of them. Now they are both better and getting back to regular life.

That brings me to the saddest part....being in the middle of our regular lives means that the three of us don't get to see each other very much. Mom lives in another state, Sis lives in another town, and all three of us are full of our familial and personal obligations. I'm hoping the three of us can schedule a little get away weekend and make up for the time we lost the last couple of days of this Christmas break. There's just nothing like girl time with my mom and sissy! I miss them a ton already!

Friday, December 26, 2008

What a great holiday!

Christmas has officially come and gone, but what a great holiday I had with my family! My mom and step-dad came to town, my sister stayed a couple of nights with us, and we exchanged a ton of gifts. I did get the fabulous dress that I asked for, however it didn't fit me well at all. It was perfect in the waist, but it looked like the top half, shoulders and all, were made for a woman two times bigger than me. Not to worry...the Shabby Apple site has plenty of dresses for me to exchange this one with.

I got a wonderful book, The Mother In Me, that I asked for that was a fundraiser for the Nie Recovery Fund, and I can't wait to dive into it. I also got a new David Sedaris book, Dress Your Family in Couderoy and Denim, that I'm excited to dig into. And, I got my beautiful little Sublime Stitching starter kit complete with the tattoo alphabet and an apron to get started with!!! What am I doing sitting here blogging? I need to be stitching!

My son loved his camo fleece blanket, thank goodness! He says he can't wait to cozy up in it, but it's been 70 degrees in Texas the past few days. No freezing temps in site just yet. Oh well, the blanket is ready for him when he gets cold.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, and if you are like us are recovering from all of the dessert indulgence. Mom and I delivered a box of cookies to family today so that Hubby and I won't stuff our faces anymore with them. We still have half a pumpkin pie, an entire pecan pie and some red velvet cake balls to devour, so the more we give away the better! I've got to get back to the gym!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Finished Fleece!

Yeah!!! The camo fleece blanket project/gift is complete! I finally finished all of my blanket stitches this morning. I decided to go with a red embroidery yarn since it was a nice contrast to the camo print and the light gray backing. I must warn you....it doesn't scream professional. But, it does scream homemade....by Mom....with love, right? I'm sure the little guy will just love having it to snuggle up with. I'm hoping that my hand stitchery will improve with time. My little Sushi Bear had to check it out just as soon as I set it on the floor.

I was in need of a better needle, but didn't drag myself into the right store to get one. The times that I have ventured out into the hustle and bustle I've just picked up exactly what I needed and didn't veer off my mandatory course. So, I trudged through the blanket with a needle that was a bit too fat for the fleece, but it's over now. Lived and learned for the next project.

I'm glad I added the stitches, even though they aren't the most beautiful. I think it added a nice touch to the blanket. Now I just have an ornament to make for my son to place in his stocking. It will be made from a scrap of flame fabric, which he accidentally saw already. He doesn't know what its for, but he knows its for him. He brought it out to me after he found it laying out on my sewing table and asked, "So, what's this for?" I didn't exactly respond with a complete sentence, just a "Go put that back, please."

That's the second time one of us has seen something we weren't supposed to around here. The first instance was when I saw a receipt my husband left laying out from a store that has a dress I asked for. I didn't read the receipt, but unless Hubby just went out on a limb and picked out a different one, then I know I'm getting the dress I asked for. It's absolutely fabulous, don't ya think! Love the pin up style!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Frosty

As we are preparing for Christmas this week I thought I would share with you one of my favorite holiday decorations. My son made this in Fourth Grade. Since his necktie covered the mouth area we decided to name him Frosty the Snow Hostage. Our Doberman Axel has taken a liking to Frosty, too, and I've had to repair him a few times this year. We decided to move Frosty up to the mantle. Since he's a hostage we figured he'd had enough torture for a lifetime and didn't need anymore from a dog.

Have a wonderful week as you prepare for Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

camo fleece update

The camo fleece blanket is now stitched together (by my sewing machine), but I didn't do the blanket stitch around the edges. It's a bigger blanket than I thought so I'm not sure if I can get all the blanket stitches completed before Christmas. Trey will be with me all weekend so I don't know if I can sneak in any more sewing time until Monday evening when he goes back to his dad's. I'm going to try, tho. The blanket looks so plain with just a raw edge. So, my apologies for this boring little post, but I'll update it with a picture once I'm truly finished.

I must say that I was so excited when I arrived home yesterday to find a little pile of presents wrapped just for me from Hubby and the little guy. I got in trouble for shaking and feeling of the packages. And, no hints were given. I'm so bad at waiting for surprises! I'm not bad enough to dig through the paper or anything, but I love messing with the shape of the packaging and giving things a jiggle so I can try to figure out what's in there!!! I'm still such a kid when it comes to gifts!

I'm hoping to find an embroidery stitching starter kit from Sublime Stitching (there's a link to the left) in there, some earrings that I picked out a while back, a dress that I absolutely adored.... You know, to be quite honest I'm not even sure what all I've asked for. I didn't write it all down in list format, just sent emails to Hubby as I would think of things or find pics online to show him. He and the little guy are pretty good at coming up with ideas of their own, too, so who knows what I'm getting.

I can't wait for Christmas to get here!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What today holds....

Today I have to leave work a bit early so that I can meet with the little guy's teachers. Yep, its Parent Teacher Conference Day. I'm a little anxious about what will be discussed. It is my little pride and joy they'll be discussing after all. His grades are good for the most part, his attitude is good, he is respectful to his teachers. But, I know they'll talk about room for improvement. He's definitely no overachiever, that's for sure!

I'm hoping to work on his camo fleece blanket after that since it's one of his Christmas gifts, but I'll have to wait and see how long the meeting goes. If it goes too long then he'll be coming home with me and I won't be able to work on the secret project. I'm thinking of using a blanket stitch like this one to join the two pieces of fleece together. How original is that?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Seven weird little things....


A big thanks to Rambler for the idea of posting about some of my natural weirdness. I bet you didn't realize that you wanted to know seven weird little things about me! So, here goes...
  1. I love wearing Moccasins around the house...even when it's hot. I have a pair from Santa Fe, they are kind of a yellowish color, natural leather, with some beading over the toes. They have just the perfect amount of squish under my feet when I walk! I can't wait to put them on when I get home from work!!!
  2. I have a very perverted sense of humor. Sometimes the grossest things to most people make me laugh extremely hard. I can't help it! I've been that way as long as I can remember!
  3. Right now, because of the holiday nut supply at the grocery store, I'm in the middle of a nut fetish! I can't crack enough! Almonds, walnuts, hazel nuts, Brazil nuts... you name it and I'm munching on them. I haven't found any chestnuts yet this season. Hopefully I'll find some very soon!
  4. I'm a very bipolar driver. Some days I'm very friendly and wave people on in front of me, smile at passing drivers, don't tail gate, do the friendly chuckle as someone almost pulls out in front of me.... But, other days I'm pretty much psycho. I talk under my breath at everyone who passes, make snarly faces as I pass by people who've just irritated me, zoom around slow drivers... all while making inappropriate comments. Then, sometimes in the very same day, I go right back to being the Nice Princess. Go figure.
  5. Sometimes I feel like there are spirits around me. I don't talk to them or anything...just have the feeling sometimes of there being something else in the room when I'm all alone. That's usually when I HAVE to turn on the music or the tv to side track myself, otherwise I get very skeered and want to turn on all the lights and not let my feet linger by the bottom of any bed in the house.
  6. I have big green eyes and used to scare myself in the bathroom mirror when I was a kid. I would bug them out and tilt my head downwards as if I was about to attack. Then I would have to run out of the room. I must admit I've recently tried to do this again when I was near a mirror. It didn't have the same effect, but I sure can look creepy when I want to!
  7. I pick my cuticles. It's a horrible habit. I love having beautiful nails, but I'm constantly digging at the skin around them. I'll go through phases where I'll leave my hands alone, but more often than not Hubby has to tell me to stop picking my fingers. It's gross...I know.
Now it's your turn. Enquiring minds want to know! (remember that commercial?)

Advent Calendar

I know I'm a bit late to bring up the topic of an Advent Calendar, but that's been on my mind as a project to make for next year. We don't have an Advent Calendar, but we talk about getting one each time Christmas approaches. We just haven't found one that we really like.

I got an idea in November from my friend at Simple Beans on making one, and I think it's worth checking out and trying! I wish that I had made the time to create one of these for my family this year, but I didn't. So....it's on my "to do" list for next Christmas!!!

What about you and your family...do you guys use an Advent Calendar? If so, what kind do you have?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tagged for Interrogation!

Well, what d'ya know...I've been tagged by my friend Keith at Keith's Space to answer the following questions...

1. Where is your cell phone? desk
2. Where is your significant other? home
3. What's your hair color? brown
4. Your mother? Las Vegas
5. Your father? Heaven
6. Your favorite thing? loving
7. Your dream last night? negotiating
8. Your goal? success
9. The room you're in? office
10. Your hobby? creating
11. Your fear? death
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? moved
13. Where were you last night? home
14. What you're not? crazy
15. One of your wish list items? dress
16. Where you grew up? Oklahoma
17. The last thing you did? drive
18. What are you wearing? slacks
19. Your TV? off
20. Your pet? dogs
21. Your computer? Mac
22. Your mood? content
23. Missing someone? Mom
24. Your car? Hybrid
25. Something you're not wearing? socks
26. Favorite store? Banana
27. Your summer? fleeting
28. Love someone? amazingly!
29. Your favorite color? green
30. When is the last time you laughed? today
31. Last time you cried? - yesterday
32. Are you a b*tch? sometimes
33. Favorite position? leader
34. Favorite past time? crafting
35. Are you a hater or a lover? lover
36. Are you genuine or fake? genuine
37. Any vices? coffee
38. Pro-life or wire hanger? pro-adoption
39. McCain or Obama? both
40. Pro-plastic or natural? depends
41. Dream job? motivational


Ok, I'm supposed to tag seven more bloggers to keep this going. However, it's too hard for me to pick that sort of thing because I tend to pick the same bloggers over and over. So, if you are interested, please answer the questions on your blog and place a link in my comments section so we can all check out your responses. Thanks for playing!!!!

Thanks for tagging me, Keith! I enjoyed reading your answers. Have a great rest of the week!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Ornaments

Last month I came across a design for ornaments that I really liked. It's called a quilted ornament. It doesn't require any sewing, just folding and pinning fabric squares in a pattern, and I think it makes the cutest little decorations! Here are some pics of one of my recent projects. If you are interested in purchasing a pattern to make these ornaments visit Simple Beans through my link(s) to the left. It takes about an hour to complete one after you get the hang of it, and I find it to be totally relaxing!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Thinking and Driving

I commute about 40 minutes each weekday morning and afternoon to work. I listen to NPR most of the time, sometimes listening to music if there is something specific I am in the mood for. But a lot of the time I catch myself totally zoning out thinking of completely random things. I thought I would see if you are in the same boat while you drive.

Things that go through my mind as I drive...
  1. I notice I'm not fully paying attention to the report I'm finding interesting on the radio and wonder if I'll misquote the statistics later to someone, hence starting a new chain of misinformation.
  2. I say a few random prayers for friends, family and some blogger friend needs I've read about...always making sure I say, "Thank you God for this day and all of the blessings you've given me." I feel extremely guilty if I just start listing my prayers without saying thanks to God first...not sure if He's bothered by how I start my prayers, just my anal habit.
  3. I replay bits of conversations I've had with my family and/or friends, analyzing tone and content, then play out different outcomes in my head.
  4. I wonder about my mom's life and what's going on at her house.
  5. I think about tattoo ideas.
  6. I think about finding a church and how I would really like to find a good church home....I miss that aspect of life. Then I feel a bit guilty for not having my son in an active youth group and remember the fun I had when I was involved, which was never regularly, but fun nonetheless.
  7. I think about homeless people and wonder how they ended up that way. I wonder if they have children with them and if they are hungry and cold. I wonder about their safety.
  8. I think about fabrics and what I could make with them.
  9. I wonder why I even have the radio on since I'm having so many fleeting thoughts of randomness!
  10. Oh, crap! Did I almost just broadside that vehicle? Geeze....I must be very deep in thought!
What do you think about while you drive?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Anthro Sunday!

For those of you who are fans of Anthropologie I wanted to show you a great event that I was able to attend this evening with my sister. She was invited to a Cardi Party and asked me to tag along. We were asked to bring in an old sweater that we would like to spruce up, and they would have all of the adornments that we would need.

We each brought a button down sweater... mine (the top pic) a very boring cardigan from Ann Taylor that I've had for a few years, and my sister brought white cable knit sweater (the second pic) our mom had given her. You can't really see the detail on my sleeves, but I also stitched a bit of brown thread around the sleeves. Sorry the pictures don't show more detail... but if you click on each picture it should show you a larger image to zoom in on.

The ladies at Anthropologie had so much there for us to work with. I'm talking other sweaters that we could take apart, buttons galore, embroidery thread, glue, ribbons, scraps... you name it!

Hubby found them both to be quite grannyish, but we had an absolute blast sipping hot cider and letting our creativity flow!

I highly recommend having a Cardi Party of your own.... all of the ladies there had a great time! And, it's so much fun to bring some life into an old sweater that you don't wear anymore!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

it's an honor to just be nominated!

I received a rather unique award today...from my bloggin' buddy the Rambler. The only thing is I'm not so sure what to do with this award. It didn't come with any rules. And, at first I thought... Heck yes! I don't have to stop and pick only five people to forward it to and worry about someone feeling left out! But, then I began my usual over analysis of how to proceed.

Then I began to over analyze the award image. Ok, it's got "Captain Dumbass" written on it. Am I really that psyched to receive an award with such a lovely tag name on it? I mean I know I have C.D.A. moments, but a captain of the D.A. world I certainly won't admit to being!
So, before I go into a form of pyschosis from all of this mental bantering back and forth in my brain, let me just say a big thank you....no, really I'm serious.... to Rambler for thinking enough of me to send an award my way. I find her blogging to be quite entertaining and really enjoy reading her comments on my posts so I'm truly flattered.

My FINAL anaylsis of this award has revealed that the honor simply means that my blog is one heck of a treasure! That's my story and I'm stickin' to it! (I know... overused line from blogger hell....) Or, how about... And, that's the way the cookie crumbles! ok, I'll stop now. Time for sleep!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Epiphany!

I heard a report (probably from NPR) that womens desks were usually more germ-ridden than mens because women tend to eat at their desks more often. I thought, Well...yeah, I eat at my desk throughout every work day but I'm not messy about it! Then today happened. The epiphany that I've been deluding myself and in denial of what might really be lurking on my desktop and keyboard!

I'm sitting here eating my lunch, answering phone calls and checking messages and decide to open my yogurt/dessert. I was staring at my computer screen while taking off the foil lid so I didn't pay any attention to how laden with yogurt it was...I just pulled the thing right off. And, yogurt went up my arm, on part of my keyboard and flecked the top of my desk.

So much for not being a messy eater at my desk! I instantly thought of all the germs I was most likely spreading with my live cultured treat. Guess I better go retrieve the Lysol and get to spraying... and own up to the fact that yes, my desk is probably more germy than the guy next door. Yuck!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

what I've been working on

Let me start by telling my blogger buddy The Rambler that I'm still working on getting mi hermana (my sister) and mi mamasita (my mom) to answer my little questionnaire that I came up with based on some of your recent posts. I found my questions very entertaining, however my family hasn't responded with their answers yet. What's up with that? Doesn't everybody in my family just want to think about me???

Since I'm waiting to finish my other blog post, I thought I would share with you the quilt project that I've been working on (off and on, that is) for the past couple of weeks. Please keep in mind that I began this project over eight years ago, and I was working with scrap pieces. Back then I was still in my infancy as far as putting together quilt blocks go so this pattern is very simple. The polka dotted binding (edging) I just added last weekend so that's new, and the material (little red stars and plain muslin) on the back is new. All in all it's a very Plain Jane piece of work. But, it's my goal to finish this project before I even attempt to tackle any new quilt projects. I think I might add some decorative hand stitching to the top to liven it up a bit, but the rest of the hand quilting will just be muslin colored stitches that you really won't be able to see. I'll keep you posted with how the finished quilt turns out.

You can see my little puppies making sure their heads are visible. (Sushi is the Chihuahua and Axel is the Doberman but you can only see part of the back of his head.) They follow us around no matter what we're up to. They just love being involved!

I keep forgetting to take the date off my camera! And, I'm sorry I'm too lazy to crop it out when I've posted pics recently. Does that annoy you? It certainly bugs me!

Another update, we put up most of our exterior Christmas lights tonight! Yeah!!! We still have some lights to add to our bushes and tree so I'll take an undated picture once we're finished.

Monday, December 1, 2008

who wants something free?

Ok, I know you love free things, right? Well stop by this place today and see how you can win a free $100 giftcard for Target. Just in time for Christmas!!!


Sunday, November 30, 2008

a dash of Christmas decor

As promised I am now ready to post a couple of pictures from the beginnings of our holiday decorating this weekend. We haven't finished yet... between the computer projects Hubby has going on and the little guy's time at his pappasito's house we haven't had a full day of dedicated decorating time. We are supposed to put up the outside lights some time this afternoon. Until then, it's back to working on my quilt and doing chores. Doesn't that sound delightful???

Here is the wreath that I made this morning. I've had the wreath for several years, but no longer liked the decorations that adorned it. So, this year I picked up some natural wintry looking items to replace the old stuff with. I rather like how it turned out!

The Christmas tree pics aren't the greatest...one was taken with the flash and one without. We have to pick out a new tree-topper this year and haven't found one yet. We've been repulsed by the Medusa angel that was a hand-me-down for too many holiday seasons, so we retired her this year. Hopefully we'll find a good replacement in the next day or so!

Happy decorating to you and yours!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

More to come...

It's decorating day at my house! I'm so excited! I'm off to grab Hubby and my little guy and get started. More pics (w/o faces, of course!) to come... Stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Important Thanksgiving Message

For those of you who are following the Nielson's recovery along with me, I would like to make sure you know that Mr. Nielson posted a personal thank you today through some help from his close friends and family. Please check out his video. I know I was so excited to see him talking and communicating. I'm sure you will be, too!



Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

wannabe vintage

You know, back in the day....which was a Wednesday (a touch of Dane Cook there for ya)... when I began this blog I had every intention of posting things that looked vintage. I ran out of cute little easy-to-find pics to incorporate into my posts. I ran out of post ideas that I could link to a vintage girly picture. So, I've just muddled through by throwing ideas out at you as they come into my head or when someone inspires me to write about a particular topic. I know, not life changing for my readers or anything, but hey... I hope I'm able to entertain you at least a moderate amount of time each week!

I really do LOVE vintage things! I love coordinating my outfits so that I look like a lady from the 1940's or 1950's, and some days I can hit it pretty close. Other days, well... who knows what my clothing concoction says to passers-by. But, in my heart I aspire to look like Donna Reed or Coco Chanel (minus the nasty cigarette!) on a daily basis when I get ready for work.

Today for example, I'm sporting my brown and white houndstooth pencil skirt with a fitted brown long-sleeve top, my shiny vintage brooch and matching earrings, old-fashioned nude-colored hose and my wannabe vintage brown pumps. I was thinking earlier today when I got to work that I looked moderately old-fashioned! Yeah! Except for my hair... Today I was uninspired to try to fashion it up in an retro "do" so it's just straight and sleek...more early 80's looking than modern vintage. Oh well... I guess I can't be Coco or Donna every day of the week. After all, I don't sleep in little curlers or with rag strips in my hair. If I can figure out how to do it, though, I'm gonna give it a whirl!

And, a side note for anyone who knows me and wants to shower me with gifts... I collect vintage womens handkerchiefs, brooches and aprons. Donations are kindly accepted year round!

Monday, November 24, 2008

I won! I won!

Do you remember when I posted about a beautiful giveaway??? Well, Dana at Old Red Barn Co. was giving away three quilts. I commented that I felt my odds were pretty low at actually winning based on the number of comments that were ahead of my entry, but also because I literally never win anything. I hoped my luck was changing, and guess what... it did!!! I won one of the three quilts.

I'm actually rather late with posting my thank you, so my sincerest apologies to Dana, Moda and Tula Pink for not advertising my appreciation sooner! I am so grateful to Dana for hosting the giveaway, and to Moda along with Tula Pink for providing the beautiful fabrics that composed such an amazing quilt. I am so happy that the first thing I won was such a keepsake! I've already snuggled up in it this weekend, and have it on display in my bedroom. I'm very proud of it!

If only I could remember to pick up a lottery ticket I could test just how much my luck has changed. I'll keep working on that...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Fantabulous Family Friday Night

Last night Hubby, the little guy and me had an absolutely fantabulous time. I'm not exaggerating! You know how some Friday nights, you get home, fix and eat dinner, then just relax and veg in front of the tv watching movies? I really anticipated that to happen to us since we didn't have any plans to go out to eat or do much of anything. Happily, I was very wrong. It was no run-of-the-mill evening at our hacienda!

The little guy started by asking if we wanted to play a game after we finished dinner. Hubby and I were both game (ha, ha, ha!) and the three of us headed to the game closet to pick something out. We picked the "America" version of Monopoly. We hadn't played this game literally in years. Around four or five years to be exact-ish. This version is much more fun than we had remembered, or maybe we're just more in-to the "American" theme now than we were five years ago...who knows. I highly recommend you check it out, tho, if it's still available.

We got started and all three of us began buying up properties and charging rent! This version also has American People and Places cards that lead you around the board, as well as American Challenge cards where you are asked trivia questions. One of the cards I drew had me pay a fine because Susan B. Anthony voted, which reminded me (again) that yes, there was a time when women weren't legally allowed to contribute politically to how our country was led. What b.s. back then!!! The little guy, who's ten years old, cracked us up when he had to add up how much rent to charge us when we landed on his monopoly and said, "I can't believe you guys are making me do math on a Friday night!" Of course he said that with a smile, but it was one of the extremely funny innocent remarks that kids make all the time.

We played for over three hours straight. I was sooo ready for bed by that time! The guys seemed to be ready to play all night, but gave in with my request when the little guy was practically bankrupted by the rent due to Hubby on one of his many monopolies. We had such a great time! All future Friday nights now have something more to live up to. Maybe we'll make it a regular thing! I certainly hope so.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

how green are you?

I often think of myself as a pretty environmentally conscious individual. But, I'm sure a staunch Greeny would argue I could do more. I was wondering... if I added up what I do to help out our planet would that be considered very much by an expert? (that's a purely hypothetical question... I'm not going to research it at this point in my week) I'm looking for ideas for what else we can realistically do. We live in a suburb and have to commute each work day; most of the places we shop and socialize at are not within walking distance of our home. What do you do, especially if you are also a Suburbanite, to help reduce that carbon footprint?

This is what my husband, son and I do regularly....
  • recycle by using the bins provided by our city for paper, plastic and glass
  • don't buy bottled water because each of us (the little guy included) has our own Naglene bottle (BPA Free) that we take with us wherever we're going
  • mulch our lawn instead of bagging it and we sweep our clippings off of the pavement instead of using one of those obnoxious blowers
  • we don't over-water our lawn or water during inefficient times of the day
  • we put solar screens on the windows at home to reduce our energy consumption
  • I drive a Camry Hybrid
  • we wash large loads of laundry instead of small ones and wash using cold water (ok, sometimes I just have to use hot)
  • wrapped our hot water heater with a blanket
  • have a programmable thermostat for our a/c and heating unit
  • use ceiling fans to help circulate air
  • my husband turns off the ignition when idling in his vehicle (my car switches to the hybrid battery in those situations)
  • turn off the faucet while brushing
  • don't use plastic bags... we bring our own canvas bags when we shop
  • recently changed from liquid laundry detergent and fabric softner to powder detergent and dryer sheets so that we use less plastic...the paper products seem easier to recycle...we could be wrong on this
  • I stockpile my MAC make-up containers so I can recycle them at the MAC counter and get a free lipstick! (If you use MAC products then you know they last for-ev-er, so I have to hold on to these for awhile to get the required number of six to trade in.)
There are things that I know we could do, but I'm not sure we actually ever would consistently....
  • utilize a composter for our food scraps (can you add dog poo to those???)
  • keep a vegetable garden
  • use a push mower & edger (yeah, I don't think Hubby would dig that...)
I know there are more things we could do, but honestly my mind is going blank right now. So, tell me...what do you recommend? What do you do?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Awesome girlie recommendation!

I've had several great responses to my Anthropologie skirt post that I thought I would share another amazing find with the ladies out there.

Let me start by saying that I'm sick of wearing thongs. But, one of my biggest pet peeves is panty lines. Running a close second is having to look at granny-panties. So, what's a line-less lovin' gal to do? Sorry if that's T.M.I. (too much information) for some of you but I figured someone else out there may be in the same sit-chee-ation.

I've found the solution! Last Friday after work I headed over to a Soma Intimates store and checked out their pantie-lineless undies that I've seen advertised. A very helpful older woman (we're talking granny-pantie age) came to my aid and of course I let her know I was very cynical about this product. How could it possibly work without bunching up, sliding around or actually being invisible??? And, not look totally unattractive on my bum??? She raved about the product and pushed the latest sales gimick that was going on. As I analyzed her possible commission-craving motive I caved and figured I would give them a shot. The picture shown is of the bikini style which is what I bought...there is also a hipster that is not too bad, but I felt the bikini was the cutest.

I wore the first pair over the weekend with some awesome fitting jeans of mine that I definitely wouldn't want to ruin the back view of by showing linage. These undies are truly amazing! They really don't move. They really don't bunch. And, honestly they really don't show! Now, if I decided to wear some tight knit pants (which I really don't think I have any) there might be another story to tell. They are sooooo comfy that I had to tell you all about them. I highly recommend dashing out and picking some up, or ordering some online if there isn't a store near you.

Let me know what you think! Have you tried these out yet?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Lovely skirt....have to share!

Let me start by saying that I absolutely LOVE the skirt that I am wearing today! I bought it from Anthropologie and today is my first time to wear it. You may not be able to tell from the picture, but it fluffs out like a poodle skirt. It has tulle underneath the top layer to make it stick out. I'm feeling soooo Donna Reed today! I just need an apron and a cookie sheet in my hand and I'll be all set! And, yes... I am also wearing pearls!

Bloggers Beware

Hello All,

I'm writing a letter to my wonderful readers of these my lil' writings, and hope to pass along a tidbit of useful information to you. I know I don't have a lot of "followers" on my site as some of the blogs that I read have over 1,000 followers. But, to those of you who have a manageable amount of followers, and are able to check them out, I would highly recommend doing so. Here's why....

A few weeks ago a woman began following my blog and I quickly checked her link to see what she wrote about. I found her posts to be very dark, but just left her blog thinking that I didn't share the same outlook so I wouldn't "follow" hers, no harm done, right? Well, today I was looking over my followers and wanted to check out her site to see if she had turned to brighter side of life or if she was still writing about The Dark Side. I was blown away that she had actually written about causing bodily injury to a person, felt totally justified in her actions and planned on finding more victims.

I commented on her site that I couldn't tolerate what she stood for and was blocking her as a follower. My site is completely public so she can still come back and make vindictive comments if she so chooses, but I felt it was very important that I let her know I didn't want her kind of business. Then I quickly sent Hubby an email thanking him for insisting that I keep my blog anonymous.

How do you feel about policing your site? Do you find it to be unnecessary? I'm curious to see how you would react if you found you had a follower that offended you with their writings. Would you do anything at all?

Thank you kindly for your responses. Hopefully The Mutilator will not participate.

My best to you,
Shorty

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Uber-Amazingly Flattered!!!

Well, well, well... I must say that Amy from Chapters has officially made my day! She most graciously sent me this lovely award through her wonderful site. I'm truly flattered and honored. It is such a great feeling to find blogs that you can relate to and love to read daily, but it's an even greater feeling to be acknowledged by the writer of one of those blogs. Thanks, Amy!

The Uber (synonym to Super) Amazing Blog Award is a blog award given to sites that:

~ inspire you ~ makes you smile and laugh ~ gives amazing information ~ is a great read ~ has an amazing design ~ and/or any other reasons you can think of that makes them uber amazing!

The rules of this award are:
  1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
  2. Nominate at least 5 blogs that for you are Uber Amazing!
  3. Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.
  4. Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from.
I would like to pass this award to the following blogs...

Thank you for entertaining me every day and providing me with a little bit of blogger friendship. I'm so glad to have found all of your sites!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Carrying the "7" Torch

Ok, gang....there's a blog I like to read, Keith's Space, and he had an idea for today, Saturday's Seven, that I really liked. And, I'm going to snag his idea and keep it going! Hope you don't mind, Keith, but I loved your post and just had to have it for myself (and give you a small amount of advertising)!!!

Seven things I'm feeling right now on this beautiful Saturday morning...

1. I'm missing my little guy....his father and I have joint custody so this weekend my favorite mini-fella is not home with me. I chatted with him on the phone first thing this morning, and heard this beautiful little voice, but that's just not the same as being able to hug his sweet little neck and smooch his chubby little cheeks.

2. Hubby has gone with a buddy to the Gun Show so I've got the house to myself, the crafty ideas are flowing, the hot tea is nice and sweet, and I'm feeling very content!

3. I'm missing my mamasita. Today is her 56th birthday and she lives in Las Vegas...far from me. It's too early here for me to call her so I'm waiting patiently to be able to call and sing her the usual birthday diddy.

4. I'm happy about last night. I met up with some friends that I don't get to see often, met some new ones, and we had tons of fun people watching and making fun of the stupid stuff you see going on when you're in a bar. One chick was ralphing her guts up in the bathroom...hugging the porcelain bus, most of her body on the nasty bar-bathroom floor, shoes hanging off her feet with her drunken buddy trying to console her while she swayed back and forth above the puker's head. (Ok, I'm not happy that the girl was feeling so much misery, but I'm happy that I'm smart enough to not venture down that gluttonous path! I have established a one drink maximum when I go out with friends and am driving, and I stuck to my plan with no problems. I'm feelin' good this a.m. despite being out until 1:00 a.m.!)

5. I'm feeling good that I have plans this afternoon with Hubby when he gets back. We may go shooting at the range and I'm looking forward to nailing some targets with my new Sig P232. You know, Agent 99's gun on the cover of the Get Smart DVD? Very stylish!

6. I love it that every time I think or talk about my new gun (the Sig P232) I think of the movie Finding Nemo. You may not get it, I certainly don't, but for some reason Dory's repetition of "P. Sherman 42 Wallaby Way" goes through my head every time! I have no idea why saying P and a few numbers makes that connection in my brain, but hey...another example of my crazy thought processes.

7. I'm lovin' the fact that its Saturday! I just adore my weekends and hope to savor this day as much as humanly possible!

Ok, it's time for breakfast. My rumbly tummy can wait no more!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

one beautiful give away!

I just stumbled across a new site this morning after ready a post from Pamperingbeki.

Dana at Old Red Barn Co. is having an amazing quilt giveaway!!! I must admit I'm intimidated by my odds of winning one of these beauties considering when I posted a comment about her generosity I saw that there were 897 comments ahead of me. I'm sure by her deadline on November 17th there will be well over 1,000 comments to fill her random draw bucket! I never really win anything so I'm hoping my luck will change with this opportunity!

I love quilts! My great-granny got me started sewing quilt blocks when I was in elementary school. And, years later she actually gave me the blocks I sewed on her machine. It is such a wonderful thing to have from her now that she's in Heaven. I just need to finish it! I've started a few large ones but haven't finished them. The only quilting projects that I've completed are ones that I've given as gifts, and are usually of the baby size variety.

Check out Dana's site and give the quilts a look-see if you'd like. As much as I don't want to decrease my chances of being picked as a winner, I would love for you all to see these beautiful creations!!! Good luck! (to me, too!)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wannabe funny

Do you ever have moments when you think of something really funny to say and you crack yourself up? But, the really funny thing ends up being that no one would probably find it as humorous as you just did. This happens to me all the time and I get called out on it.

My family calls me a dork on a regular basis, especially my little sister and my husband. I guess they get to see me in action the most. My son still plays along with me most days so even though I'm sure he calls me a dork in his mind he doesn't actually verbalize it as often as the adults do.

I had one such moment last night while my husband and I were cleaning up the kitchen after dinner. Only, this time I kept my funny-dorky thought to myself. But, I still cracked myself up so I was having a good time in my head. Don't ask me what got me started, but I found myself thinking that if I had the opportunity to introduce myself to a stranger (in front of an audience, of course) I could say, "My name is Luka. I live on the second floor." And then pause to see if they found that to be a familiar sounding statement. Then I could follow up with, "I live upstairs from you. Yes, I think you've seen me before."

Did you get it??? Do you remember the
song by Suzanne Vega?
(click here)

Ok, now I'm not an abused person...I don't get in fights with my family members or have slamming sounds around my house that would cause neighbors to wonder what's going on like what is described in this song. The only reason this song was in my head was because I saw it on one of the video screens at my health club the other night, and I remember thinking, "Wow...I haven't heard that song or seen that video in YEARS!" And, it used to play all the freakin' time.

Yep, that's a little inkling of how my strange little mind works sometimes. Comments and phrases pop in and out of my thoughts, I guess like movie lines and such, and I try to fit them into conversations where I can. Most of the time the person I'm talking to doesn't get it. Hubby and I do this all the time with each other. He quotes his favorite movies, most of which I can't quite place until he reminds me, but I know instinctively when he's quoting something. My son is picking up on it, too. He's getting just as sarcastic and quotable as the rest of us. I love it!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lunch with my Vet

I just love it when my monotonous work days sometimes get a little jolt of excitement! Don't get me wrong...I like my job, but day after day it's pretty much the same. Get to work at seven a.m., do lots and lots of paperwork, enter stuff in the computer, have a cup of tea, answer questions, ask questions, do more paperwork, eat lunch at my desk or in my car listening to the radio, then get back to work until it's time to go home.

Today, being Veteran's Day, my husband was in the Downtown area for a parade. He walked with other Veterans along the parade route. He had mentioned this morning that he might do that, but he wasn't sure. Well, he did it. And, I'm glad he did. He deserves to be part of that group.

Even better was that he called me after he finished up and we practically asked each other at the same time, "Wanna go to lunch?" Of course we did! So, he came by my office and we headed to a little Mexican food place nearby. Good food and great conversation.

It was a very nice surprise and I enjoyed it immensely!!!

Thanks, Hubby!
And, Happy Veteran's Day to you!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Disturbing reality

I hate to start the week off playing Debbie Downer (mwaahh, mwahhhhh) but here I go...

Every work day I have to commute past a downtown area. As most downtown areas have it, there is low income area that I must drive through. It never fails... I see at least one dead dog on the side of the road or in the middle of the road. What a way to begin a day, or end one for that matter. I hate that. I hate seeing dogs that lost their lives as they were wandering around looking for a bit of adventure, or just looking for a place to provide shelter. I say a little prayer for the family that lost their pet, and for the soul of the little creature to now be playing gleefully in Heaven.

I always find myself thinking, why don't more pets have to be spayed or neutered in every city? Why are people allowed to breed dogs without a license? I know it takes money to fund these types of things....looking out for animals who can't look out for themselves; funding to spay or neuter stray pets or pets who have a home but a home where the owners can't afford the surgery. There is a no-kill facility in my area that almost went out of business for lack of funding until a news report featured them and more donations came pouring in to save it.

Why do people want to buy from breeders and pet stores when there are so many homeless pets to choose from? Rescuing dogs is an amazingly wonderful thing! I've adopted two dogs from different rescue shelters and both places made sure that my dogs were "fixed" before I was able to leave with them. I recently chatted with someone about pet adoption and they were allowed to adopt and leave with their dog before it was "fixed" but they had a time limitation on when they had to have it fixed or else they would be fined. I wondered how many of those fines actually get collected.

How many times have you talked to someone who was looking to find a new home for a pet they had in their care? Meaning, "Yeah, I bought this dog (or adopted it) but I figured out I really don't want the commitment." I've heard of that happening too many times to count. The problem is that too many people look at dogs and cats as just animals. I look at my dogs as members of my family. I can't give up my son without a fight. It should be the same for any living being that I care for. I guess there are those who think that since animals can't speak up for themselves that pets can just be tossed aside and the former owner will never be scorned because people will only know what the owner chooses to tell others about him or herself.

I would like to ask everyone to makes sure they don't adopt a pet unless they can make a commitment for the life span of the pet. I would like to ask that people not adopt cute little dogs that are featured in Disney movies that their children beg for. A portion of those pets just end up in the pound or on the side of the road. I would like to ask that people not buy their pets from pet stores if they want a brand new baby puppy...find an independent breeder and check their references. I would like to ask that people not buy pets from breeders who over-breed their dogs.

Mostly, I would just like to ask that everyone considers adopting a pet from a rescue facility before considering buying one elsewhere. If we all do our part to provide loving homes to our pets, to make sure they don't go around procreating (have them fixed!!!) if they accidentally get out of the yard, and spread the word that we don't support animal cruelty (which includes abandonment) then I believe we'll see a lot fewer dogs on the side of or in the middle of our roads.

And, please consider donating to your local animal shelter.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Some little cutesies

For a bit of eye candy check out Tizzalicious Crafts & Cuteness.

I absolutely LOVE the "hearts and clubs" earrings with the little black beads, but I also adore the cherries!

Even topping that I really like the little sparrow necklace. As you may have noticed from my tattoo picture to the left I'm quite partial to the little birdies!


Just thought you might enjoy a look-see!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

bubble wrap

I just opened a package at work and in the box was nicely folded sheets of bubble wrap. The large sized bubbles. I couldn't resist...I had to pop some of them! Even being at work with people within ear-shot of my office. I had to do it!!!

Can you resist bubble wrap???

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Healthy Living

I'm sure you're well versed with the divorce rate in America and hear the snip-its of percentages of how many marriages end in divorce. I won't throw any new statistics your way. What I am interested in is the children that are left to deal with their parents inability to make their union successful.

My son, who is now ten, is one such child. His father and I were divorced when he was five years old. For reasons I won't dramatize the dad and I just couldn't get along after eight years of marriage and had severely different ideals as to what constituted respect for one another. Once the decision was made as to how to move forward we agreed that we both wanted to pursue joint custody. I have never had any desire to remove my child's father from his life, no matter how I might disagree with his spousal abilities, because he's always been a great father.

I was also a child of divorce, as so many politically correct publications and professionals label this type of person. My parents divorced when I was seven and behaved horribly towards each other....tons of name-calling, taking extra effort to hurt each other as much as possible for several years after the divorce, all in plain sight of me and whomever else might be in the general area. My father was especially vindictive...he went so far as to place an ad in our local paper (and it was a very small town) noting, "Must sell houseboat to pay for ex-wife's Lincoln). Thanks, Dad. Now all my friends' parents know exactly what's going on. This action did actually suit his reputation, so I guess it was par for the course. No wonder my mother couldn't get away fast enough.

These little details were talked about from time to time during my adulthood, so my son's father knew well what I went through, and that I never wanted to put my child through that same misery. Believe me, there have been many moments when his dad has behaved badly, and I am guilty of the same, just not as often of course. We acknowledge the low level of humanity we are both capable of exhibiting, but we work hard at getting along for our son's benefit.

Every day I read blogs about happy and healthy family living. Husbands and wives who have numerous children, a strong faith in God, and a devout passion for each other. I am so moved by them and admire their virtue and their strength. I hope that what they write about is true and factual, and they are as wonderful parents as they make themselves out to be because I enjoy learning from them along with many other readers.

I don't feel that I am a bad parent for having joint custody of my son. I actually feel that I am a damn good mother, despite the fact that my son comes from a once broken home. He's now from two homes, both in tact in their own respective ways. My marriage to Hubby is a truly blessed one, and I feel that our relationship serves as a positive example to our son of what a married couple can and should be like. Don't get me wrong, Hubby and I have an occasional disagreement, but we work through it diplomatically or agree to disagree and move on. If anything we over-communicate in our marriage. When something is on our minds we talk about it...sometimes beating the dead horse, but we feel this is totally necessary to keep our relationship healthy.

My point today is this....there are many divorced couples who chose to behave badly every day toward each other. So much so that they refuse to communicate with each other even over their child's education. I have been told by teachers every year that they have to send two sets of papers home with some of their students because the parents refuse to communicate with each other or can't get along. Some teachers have divulged in greater detail to what extent the disagreements between parents are that they have to deal with.

I always wonder when I hear these stories if those parents ever stop to think about how their actions affect their child. I know how it made me feel when I was a kid....like I was always torn between two relationships, that I was two-faced for listening to my dad bash my mom and feeling the need to listen sympathetically, then having my mom turn around and do the same thing. I never felt like a loyal child...that I had to show support to who I was with.

I commend couples for making marriages work (in a healthy fashion) especially if there are children involved. I do think it's too easy to get married in our society. It would be great if adults didn't get married until they were mature and knew who they really were. But, that's not the way the cookie crumbles. We all change as we go through life and develop different ideals. Some for the better, some... not so much.

But, also, I commend parents who chose to get along after divorce for the sake of their children regardless of if they truly despise each other or not. (Note: I'm not talking about abusive parents...those who physically/verbally beat up their spouses or children or harm them in any way.) Let the child form their own opinions about the other parent as they grow up. They will learn who their parents are and if they share the same values or not. Typically children love their parents warts and all, and just want to be loved back. I hope that the kids are allowed to do just that...just love, be loved, and get through life, which is hard enough even in the best of households.

And, for those of you lucky enough to be married to the same person for decades, raising your children together with the best of ideals, please keep in mind that there are those of us who provide a healthy life for children in other situations, too. There just may be more houses involved.

Monday, November 3, 2008

A beautiful thought...

Sunday morning Hubby and I were making breakfast and having a very enlightening conversation about our future. We plan to move from where we currently live at some point after our son is grown and off to college. Right now we are in the South and we talk a lot about visiting towns up North or along the West Coast to see where we might like to live. Who really knows though...we may want to stay in the South.

We were talking hypothetically about what we could do for income once that move takes place. There are a hundred different directions that our lives could take us, but it was funny to chat about some of the possibilities. We were watching bits of CBS Sunday Morning while we were cooking & chatting, and one of the segments was set in Kentucky. It showed a small little town that was in the process of electing an animal for their Mayor (not really relative to my story, but an interesting tidbit). I said wouldn't it be funny if we ended up in a small rural town (not in Kentucky) where everyone knows each other and there is only a couple of main roads to get you through town. Hubby could continue with his graphics and web design business since you can really do that from anywhere you have an internet connection and I could be one of the local crafters that sells my wares right out of the house! I imagined us not ever getting hair cuts and wearing overalls every day.... ok, just kidding.

We also talked about living in an urban setting like San Francisco where there's no need to drive....just live Downtown and walk everywhere you want to go. (But it would be nice to have one nice luxury car stored somewhere!) I could continue on with my career in management and Human Resources or go crafty, and he could still do design work, or maybe he'll follow a more tactical (as in military) career path at that point.

It was such a good feeling to stand in the kitchen cooking and talk about the possibilities of our future together....after the little guy is settling into his own adulthood. It was just a mini reality check of what life might be like as we grow old together. It made me feel all smiley inside!

Don't lose the focus!

If you're like me then there are several times throughout each day that you feel distracted. I'm not just referring to bouncing from task to task, or trying to multi-task with everything I do. I'm referring to feeling like an adult with severe Attention Deficit Disorder.

I listen to National Public Radio a lot when I'm on the road. I commute about 40 minutes to and from work Monday through Friday so I get to hear all kinds of reports and stories. Last week there was a report on our ability to multi-tasking as we age. The reporter noted some study saying that as we age we lose our ability to multi-task as efficiently as we did in our twenties. (All of you twenty-somethings who are at your peak...enjoy it while you can!)

I've wondered lately why I can't seem to stay as focused at work, or handle doing ten things at one time like I used to. I just figured I have always had ADD, and have just managed to work through it better than I am now. Now I can confidently blame it on aging!!! It's not my fault! My brain is just working differently....less effectively!

I stumbled across a good article today that I thought I would share with you. If you are like me, and have trouble focusing as well as you used to, you may want to check it out, "10 Ways to Use Laser Sharp Focus to Get More Done." It has some good tips....not sure that I will be able to work all of them into my dysfunctional multi-task-able world, but I can try!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Tatting

Today I tried out a new hobby. Tatting. It's not something anyone has ever showed me how to do, so I've been trying to teach myself with the help of some online sources. I literally have spent about five hours working on this today. I've made some progress, but I'm anxious to get a little farther. I'm just going to have to take it slow for right now because this stuff requires a lot of technique. But, at some point it should come just as easy to me as crocheting.
Here's a sample of what I was able to accomplish today...
The picture below is what I am hoping to accomplish in a relatively short period of time...
Well, I won't copy that design exactly, but you get what I'm striving for.
You can click on the picture to see more tatted adornments!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Roman Shade

Ok, I finally got around to taking a picture of the Camouflauge Roman Shade I made for my son's room. You'll have to pardon the helicopter that is flying in front of it. He has some very military-ish decor hanging from the ceiling and walls. On the other side of that same wall is a Paraptrooper floating down from the ceiling with his parashoot fully opened.
(I wish my mom would've let me have a cool room when I was a kid!!!)

Friday, October 31, 2008

Don't forget!

Depending on if your state offers early voting, today is the last day to vote before November 4th. Those of you who can... get out there and vote! Those of you who want to make it interesting... follow Keith's lead and make it a ghetto adventure to beat the monotony of standing in line. And, to think I was just going to take a book along with me...
Gotta love the creativity!
Keith, enjoy your voting experience on Tuesday!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Gettin' crafty...

So, there are a ton of things whirling around in my head that I want to do. Don't get all excited...I'm not talking about climbing Mt. Everest or running a marathon (which are honestly two things I have absolutely NO desire to do at this point in my life...). I'm talking about Tatting and Hand Embroidery!!!

How old is that granny, you ask??? Thirty-four going on seventy-two, but without crippling arthritis! (I know...sometimes I'm the only one that finds me funny.) Seriously though, my grandmother taught me to crochet when I was five with a huge crochet needle and some yarn...I want to say that it was yellow yarn, but my memory could be playing tricks on me. My great-grandmother taught me to sew quilt blocks when I was about eight or nine. I crocheted some Barbie outfits when I was in junior high school....yes, I was still playing with Barbies at the age of 13. And, when I was around 18 I actually crocheted a couple of afghans.

Once my son was born in 1998 I pulled out the old quilt blocks I had sewn as a little girl (my great-granny ended up giving them me a few years before that), and my grandmother's old Singer sewing machine, and made my first baby quilt. My son still has it. It definitely screams "Made by a Novice!" but I've continued sewing off and on ever since then.

Recently, while I was blog-hopping I found a site called Sublime Stitching. "This ain't your gramma's embroidery!" The owner Jenny Hart has a store in Austin, Texas and is quite the major artist. She works with different mediums of art, but what I latched on to was the hand embroidery stuff.

I have ALWAYS wanted to learn how to
hand embroider things!


She has patterns and instructions for making robots, pin-up girls, alphabet letters in the old-school tattoo style font, sexy librarians, el dia de los muertos characters, girly stuff....the list goes on and on! I was so excited when I found it that I quickly sent a link to Hubby demanding that one of those kits be under our Christmas tree for me! The only problem is....I have to wait until Christmas!!!

I think I've found something else I can begin to learn until then. It's called Tatting. If you're not familiar with it then go here for a beautiful example. A big thanks to Fashion Me Fabulous for the wonderful post on October 29th about it! Tatting is a form of lace-making with your hands.

Oh, the ideas that are floating through my mind about what I can create!!!!

Aren't these hobbies time consuming, you ask? Ah, yes they are. And I will have to wedge time in for these wonderful activities between blogging, going to work, being a mom, being a wife, working out and socializing. But, I can't wait to do just that! I can't wait to see what I can create.

Matter of fact, I made a roman shade for my son's bedroom window that I keep meaning to photograph so that I can share it with you. I'll try to remember to do that by tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Our leaders....would the military hire them?

With the news of Alaskan Senator Ted Stevens' conviction I wanted to send out a little food for thought. Are you aware that the Senator, despite his felonious conviction, can still run for reelection? Check out this article from The Huffington Post. I also heard this confirmed yesterday on NPR while driving home. I am baffled by this. A felon loses his/her right to vote, but there are no rules as of yet for disqualifying someone from running for the United States Senate once they become a felon. Better yet, "there is no rule barring felons from serving in Congress." (Shayana Kadidal, The Huffington Post) Hmmmm....interesting.

Does this bother you like it bothers me? I mean I realize that the stereotype for politicians is that of being "crooks" but I didn't think a real/convicted "crook" could be a leader in Congress! I know, I know...he's claiming innocence so I guess I should hold my thoughts until he's finished with his appeal, right? Won't it be strange, though if he is elected next month, but sentenced to a prison term in February? That will certainly make the global opinion of America shine even brighter, especially the state of Alaska.

Since my husband is reenlisting with the armed services he's recently had to review and complete a lot of paperwork. This paperwork asks a lot of specific questions about Hubby's qualifications, both professionally and personally, since they are inquiring as to why he feels he is a good candidate to return to serve.

That leads me to wonder how many members of Congress, or anyone running for political office for that matter, would successfully pass the application process of going to work for our military and holding a security clearance at any level. No matter if a person is enlisting for the first time or going back into the service, applicants are asked if they've been convicted of a crime. You know, kind of like most job applications. Most employers don't hire candidates with a conviction on their record, at least the ethical ones. How did this slip by when the requirements for serving in the United States Congress were prepared?

I know it takes a certain type of person to hold public office, and I'm not sure that's something I will want or could do in my lifetime. Kudos to those who step up to lead our country. However, I feel that we should demand higher ethical standards from the people we elect. It seems that our society is getting more stringent with what we will and will not let politicians get away with. I hope we only continue to have higher expectations of morals and values from those in elected office. It's not just a reflection of the elected officials...it's also a reflection on those of us who vote for those people, too.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Happy Time!

For a while now I have been noticing these moments of utter happiness that I'm feeling. And they've been sticking around for days at a time. I haven't always been the most consistently happy person, so this is a big deal for me. Moody used to be my middle name all the time. Don't get me wrong...I'm not Oscar the Grouch all the time but I've been known to have a moment here and there. Most of my friends think I'm pretty darn perky most of the time....always ready with a smile or a friendly comment. But my true colors always seem to shine the brightest when I'm around my family. I guess it's because I feel the safest when I'm with them and I feel I can get away with whatever behaviors I'm in the mood for.

I've become more conscious of my "moods" after noticing my son and my husband exhibiting negative behaviors, especially if I was in a good mood and they began to bring me down. (I've always hated that feeling of losing my positive momentum because of someone else's negative energy.) If my boy is in a bad mood I try my hardest to make him talk about it, telling him that getting things out of my head usually is enough to enable me to move on and get into a better frame of mind. This works most of the time...he talks about what's going on in his world, we find something to laugh about, and his beautiful little smile reemerges right along with his bubbly little personality. Other times it doesn't solve the issue and he just has to work whatever it is out on his own. The same goes for Hubby, who can have a "funky" moment for at least a few minutes almost each day of any given week. (Part of this is due to his current last-semester-of-college saga, which is causing him a great deal of stress....but will be over in just a couple of months. Yeah!)

I don't know if its a combination of maturing and mellowing with age, or just maturing, but I've been getting so good at getting out of bad moods more quickly (or not entering into one at all), and not letting other people bring me down. I love this sense of accomplishment! Perhaps it's because holidays are approaching...it's almost Halloween and I'm finding out how much fun I can really have as an adult with this holiday, and my all-time favorite holiday Christmas is just around the corner. Perhaps it's because I've reached a new phase of parenting that seems less demanding and stressful, or because Hubby is almost finished with his undergrad degree, which means having dual incomes is just around the corner, or because I'm not overbooked with my junior woman's club responsibilities this year so I have more ME time, or because I'm working out on a regular basis and feel better about myself, or heck...maybe it's because I'm blogging! I guess I could list numerous things that are all contributing to my positive emotional health. Who knows. I'm really not digging the over-analysis of the issue, but I do know this....focusing on my own happiness (and how it effects others) is really a wonderful thing. Just being aware of my happiness level seems to magnify just how happy I feel at that moment of reflection.

On a scale from one to ten how happy do you feel? Are you pretty consistent with staying happy? When you're not happy what do you do to bring yourself out of the funk?

I'd say I've been consistently an eight on the happiness scale for quite some time. I've been taking more pictures without any real occasion other than just capturing a moment, praying more and at a more intense level, worrying less, planning for my future projects more....and I seem to be procrastinating less. (Hubby would disagree with the procrastination one as he has to look at the state of my side of the closet each day...I know it's driving you insane, my dear, and I truly appreciate your not saying a word about it.) I'm promising myself that I'm not going to lose site of this once Hubby has military duty away from home. It's my goal to allow for moments of sadness, but to move out of them quickly so I can move forward with taking care of me and the little guy. Not to mention our two pups!

You know, it's kind of scary to think about all the other people that count on us for love, affection, care, support or just a friendly smile. But, it can also be a rewarding thought to imagine what a difference we are making in other people's worlds when we are positive. When I look at it from that perspective, the perspective of who I might be lifting up when I control my emotions, it sure is a lot easier to turn the focus off of me when I need to and focus on who really needs my attention, like my son, my husband, or even the stranger I pass in a store. I know we're all supposed to "look out for number one" but it feels so much better to look beyond that.