Monday, November 28, 2011

way past 21

I spent two and a half hours at Forever 21 today. Two and a half hours!

my hips won't even pretend to fit.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

a simple sunday

 There is an almost empty bag of cherry cordial kisses resting on its side near my left hip. I swear it was full not five minutes ago. Someone please come and take it away from me. I exaggerate, I've only eaten maybe a dozen or so in the last three hours but yes please...will someone come and take it away from me. That way, I can bribe you with baked goods so you will help me fold all these fat quarters of gingham I keep tripping over here in the new tiny casa.
It's not even four and already the light is failing me. I just spent an hour taking too many photos, working as fast as I could of the mad cups of dilly that will soon be in the shop. The windows are all open and I can hear a woodpecker in the cocoa tree out front. Yup, the windows are open. It was a smidge under 80 degrees today and it was so very lovely. We spent the morning with the mama a-go-go wandering around ancient oak trees searching for mushrooms and crashing our noggins into too low branches. After we found our way back to the car the mister and I dropped off the mama and headed to the thrift in search of treasure and, more specifically a red t-shirt or two for a project that has been kicking about my brain since yesterday. I saw the most amazing treasure of a tea tin but sadly it was in someone elses box. Drats! Instead, I picked up two ts, one record without a jacket (for another project) and a burnt orange Swingline stapler. The mister found a work light and we got out of there for under $5.
Next stop, the craft store in search of a large picture frame for a gift. We got a call from one of the sisters-a-go-go and walked across the parking lot to meet up with some family for a pizza lunch. It was a nice break from turkey and a nice visit lunching in the sun. I managed to remember to look for and find some freezer paper and then off we went home again, home again. Mister mopped up the floor and cleaned up the ants (we've been under attack as of late) whilst I worked on laundry and edited my mushroom pics. After our chores were finished he headed out to the homestead for more garage work and so I sit here on my own, tip-typing away about our day as the peck, peck, peck of the woodpecker almost keeps time with the holiday tunes I have on. The light is fading even more so, there is only a scant wedge draped across the Sunkist crate I'm using for my shop photos, the four o'clock bird has just chimed and it is time for one more cherry cordial kiss before I log off for a little netflix to keep me company while I fold those checkered fat quarters.

Friday, November 25, 2011


 As promised (or maybe that post hasn't been published yet, is it ever a good idea to write when yer feeling REALLY lousy?) here is a picture showing a partial me in something other than jeans. I did it folks! I put on tights AND lipstick and even curled up the hair and didn't stick it in a pony-tail until it was time for food. Go me!

Thanksgiving was nice. We did nothing but hang out and eat. Pac-man and Galaga were played, Buckaroo Banzai was watched (as well as a few youtube cat videos...anyone a fan of maru?) and I found that even if I did like wine, I wouldn't make it through a glass I'm such a light-weight. 

Today the plan is to sew, sew, sew and take more pictures than I wish to so that my shop, come Monday won't be so very empty. Happy Friday folks and thank you for sticking around!

the confessional: when the frumpies attack

(disclaimer. i was under assualt of the frumpies and it was ick, ick, icky when i wrote this (oh, two days ago). and not that i don't still feel this way but  the tunnel is not so long as it was. i am owning my moods mind you and so i share. i hope that this reads a little amusing, more dysfunctional than not but true, true, true and i promise i am not fishing for complements or pep talks. i just gotta be meeeeeee...carry on. oh wait, let's cal this the post-confessional, okee dokee?)

i spent last weekend with favorite people in favorite spaces. we wandered for hours around a school fair where the children looked like they stepped out of the pages of a european magazine and the women all around me wore such heavenly layers i couldn't help but feel i was at the wrong party. everywhere around me there were the most lovely ladies in the most lovely layers, including my favorite stacey who blended in so seamlessly, my heart thumped with jealousy and i felt frumpier than the frumpiest i have ever felt (and believe me, i am really good at feeling frumpy).

i know this is a perception of mine and that there are some who agree and some who do not. the important part for me to remember is that this is honestly how i feel. my feelings. they may be warped and carnival-mirror-twisted but as i feel them, they are real. as for the layers, i must confess i have lost it. my fashion sense. my quirky style lay in a puddle in the back of my new closet damp and too sullen to be wrestled in this larger shape of mine. i am stagnant. there is no reason for me to be stagnant but i am.

there are some who when stagnant smack the snooze button and get cracking on things. they get out and simply DO. me? i keep myself awake at night planning a master plan only to snub my nose at my alarm and pull the covers back over my head. there are so many items on my to-do list i pretend it doesn't exist and i do everything but. and by everything i mean i do nothing, nothing at all. i don't even take pictures any more. not really. not like i used to.

i'm sure there are oodles of reasons for all this freakified frumpiness. a soupy soup of bad-brain produced chemicals, residual hurt feelings caused by someone i like, the uncertainty of this new life and insecurities in attempting a social life. i love being able to live where we live but i feel lonely and scattered and unsure of any redeeming qualities i may have. i know a handful of people up here who are pretty awesome but my stupid shyness rears its contradictory self and i'm a blathering mess. who would want to hang out with that? i know i am too critical of myself but knowing and changing are two different things. i'm working on that, on trusting in myself and seeing something good and worthy in me. i like to think that others see something and sometimes i really think they do but then that brain of mine hunkers down on one shoulder and ruins it all. it's like the frumpy fairy has double doused me with her fairy dust. triple doused. dosed?

so i'm writing this down, to get the bad thoughts out. to purge and to cleanse and to remind myself that it is time to get out of my comfort zone. to reach back, back, back into that closet and put on a dress or a skirt or two and get all tangley-twisted in a pair of tights (there has got to be at least one pair in there that will fit). ignore those extra chins and jiggly bits and find out where the mascara went and get reacquainted with those lipstick skills you used to (semi) rock. maybe, maybe if you got yer fashion back, the frumpies will head out of dodge. at least a little. do they still make girdles?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

rolling with it

 mister is asleep on the sofa next to me as i tippy-type various angst-filled posts that may or may not sometime be published. his breathing is slow and deep as his crossed arms over his chest twitch every now and then. i feel ever-so-slighlty train wreckish and i think it's just a cycle i go through. call it depression or moodiness or simply the holidays, it is what it is and it hits like clockwork.

it's not surprising really. at least to me. my mother went into the hospital around this time just before she died. i had no idea she wouldn't be coming home. none. i think about her last Thanksgiving in a lonely room so far from her home and her comforting objects and my chest tightens. heartsick. i still feel so young. i feel like i shouldn't have to feel this way. that i am too young to not have her alive. we were close. crazy close. and i miss her. there are times when i miss her so much tears simply fall and other times i am so angry at her for things that cannot be changed. then there are times when i am so very mournful of what she went through, opportunities she lost, and the burden of her illness that my mind goes blank and i refuse, refuse to think anymore on it otherwise i might wail and wailing takes me to a place that i fear so very much.

so yes, it's the season. the season of sad. it can be bittersweet. it usually is. i gather up all my good memories of my mother and my family and the holidays and i fling them about in hopes that i can feel the warmth and charm of my mother. sometimes i succeed, mostly i do not because when i open myself up to it all, it lets all sorts of other into the mix. nothing like the holidays to remind you that you are the last of your traditions. i hold onto them so so so tightly. i wonder why when i know there is no point, no one, no child or children to pass them along to. ick, that sounds so desperate. but here's the thing, my best memories circle around those traditions my mother gave to me. those traditions that she shared even though her heart was broken. her person was broken. i need to share them but am unable to. at least in the manner i wish.

yet, through all this muck. this sad. this ick. i feel grateful and thankful for what i do have and how i came out of it all for the most part, intact (sad raccoon be damned). yes, there is melodrama and whininess and sad rants and such. i make no excuses for that. anyone who never feels these things is taking too many pills. i'm putting this out there because it is what it is. i feel sad. i feel blue. at some point tonight, i am sure i will laugh at something. i will feel inspired and i will write down an idea. i will smile to myself and i will remember my mother without tears. i will smooth back the hair that flops over the mister's forehead and feel my heart burst with all sorts of good feelings and i will slip into a pretty bed with velvety-soft vintage sheets, hippo under my arm, this song stuck in my head as i slip into slumber full of wonder and joy for all that i have.

the week of the mundane

 I have been swamped with nothing and everything all at once. The casa is still, still, still a jumbled mix of boxes full of who-knows-what. I have half finished projects on all available surfaces and even more in my head that are itch-itch-itching to get out. There are ants in the kitchen. So annoying those ant and fabric bits cluttering up the floor.

Laundry has been laundered thank goodness, and tomorrow's stuffing has been baked and I'm just about ready to whip up some sort of desserty-goodness. The light is fading fast so no more pictures until tomorrow and I think it is time to admit defeat that I will most probably NOT get anything into the shop this weekend. Zoinks!

I still have at least five more picture book posts to write up and craft for but am thinking that maybe I'll just add the pics and a link and call it a day. How, how, HOW did November get away from me so quickly? What's up November?

As for the picture up top, hippo has been rediscovered and yes, I am happy and yes, I do sleep with him tucked into the crook of whichever arm is attached to the shoulder facing up. He is a really good hippo. REALLY good and I am not the only one I know who sleeps with such a cutie. Better than them pillow-pets, cuter too (though not as square)! Happy almost-Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 18, 2011

See ya Monday!

I have a sooper busy weekend planned. Completely forgot to prepare a post or two so happy Friday and I'll see ya Monday! Until then, here's another wee thrift score...$1.75 for two hankies,  lace scarf, teacup and kiddo art in frame.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

thrift score: containers and such

The grand total for this lot was under $4. UNDER!  I do love our Goodwill Outlet. Scores are always good and depending on who is ringing you up and the time of day, etc the score can be even better!Mister found the mallet and the smallish metal box. I discovered the rest and even found two shelves I almost purchased at a different store but decided they weren't worth the $5...soooo happy I didn't get them then.
 I've been looking for cloth bound books to turn into shelves. The Wonder book was purchased mostly for the paper cover. I have no idea what I am going to do with it but yay!
 These are the two shelves I originally put back. They are small but I think I can find oodles of fun to display on them. They will be given a coat or two of paint. I still need to do that.
This metal cabinet has a handle on top. Mister is going to wax the doors so they open better and then we're gonna hang it somewhere. What shall we store inside? not pictured is the small vanity suitcase. That too will become storage of course. How could I pass up a suitcase?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

rainy days and rainbows

Last Friday we had a rainy day. It began with blue skies but began to rain sometime around eleven or so. The mister and I headed north to another tiny town in search of nasal spray. I know, thrilling, right? We wandered around the town in the chilly wind and hit up a couple of thrift stores on the way back home. Purchases were made at a few and we headed home for lunch.
I lazed about looking at Pinterest while the mister worked on various projects. He headed out to shake paper bits off the bedspread when he was greeted by a happy, happy rainbow. It continued to rain off and on until the next morning but the mister and I were all cozy, cozy in our new tiny casa and our big splurge...Netflix.
Some days are full, simple, lazy and pretty all wrapped up together.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Happy Bundt Day!

 For National Bundt Day I baked up a ginger-ale cake. Not wanting to use a box mix for my cake or a zillion eggs, I made up my own recipe that the mister seems to like as much as I do and since he is the one with the working sniffer then I think it's a keeper.

Ginger Ale Bundt Cake a-go-go
*1 cup sugar
*1/2 cup brown sugar
*1/2 cup unsalted butter
*2 eggs
*1 cup ginger ale
*3 cups flour (more or less as needed)
*1 1/2 tsp baking soda
*dash o salt
*1 tsp ginger
*grind or two black pepper

Cream butter and sugar until it sticks together. It gets crumbly, just keep mixing it up. Add eggs and beat for three minutes. Add half the ginger ale and mix. Mixture will appear curdled. Fold in half flour mixture then remaining ginger ale then the rest of the flour mixture. I cannot remember exactly how much flour I used. I know I used more than two cups, eeps!

Pour into prepared bundt pan and bake in a preheated oven for 45 minutes (or until toothpick comes out crumb free) at 375 degrees F. My cake got a smidge overbaked so keep an eye on yours.

Once cake is cool, make your glaze and drizzle over the top. I tend to wing it and was a little impatient so my glaze is a bit lumpy. I used about 2 cups powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of ginger ale and a teaspoon of black pepper. It's spicy!
For thirty awesome recipes, hop on over to The Food Librarian's blog and check out her I Like Big Bundts: 30 Days of Bundt Cakes. I need to try that eggnog cake!

same but different

Back before Halloween, the school I work at hit up the pumpkin patch with oodles of kiddos and parents in tow. There were all sorts of pumpkins and gourds. Some were quite large while others were quite small and it seemed our tots favored the wee ones. Those they could carry, not one, but TWO in their hot little hands. While we all traipsed about the rows and rows of almost overripe pumpkins, one of the kiddos spotted this awesome orb spider chillin' low to the ground. It was pretty big and at that time it was the largest orb spider I had seen being slightly larger than a quarter...

Cue Monday waffle night at the homestead where I was jibber-jabbing all about the ENORMOUS spider when the mama-a-go-go told me there was a pretty large one in the yard...
Oh my!
 Now this one is the largest orb I have ever seen. About the size of a fifty-cent piece. Fat, slightly furry and so happily full of stripes. She's a beauty. He? I don't know. Not long after that I saw a pretty large spider showing off its web in the setting sun as I drove home from the job-o number 2. I saw it from the car while chillin' at a stop sign. I saw it across the street it was that noticeable. I think this is the year of the orb spider...pretty cool.

Monday, November 14, 2011

goofing off

Last week was a pretty busy week. There was work and cleaning and more work and more cleaning but still we managed squeeze in a we bit o' thrifting, visiting and mucho bits o' fun. Here is an outtake from a family shindig...we a-go-gos are just a laugh riot. snort!

beware of falling {vintage} kitchen implements

You may have already surmised that we a-go-gos have a lot of stuff. Okay, okay, truthfully it is I who has accumulated the stuff. The mister is just along for the ride though, whenever I decide to purge, it seems the items I deem let-go-able, he had grown attached to. Aack! These vintage kitchen items were my mother's. They hung in her country turned Pee-Wee's Playhouse kitchen (courtesy of my brother) on a narrow wall paneled top to bottom in peg-board.

Everything on that peg board was used in some way. From baking to cooking to making dough ornaments for Christmas, our kitchen gadgetry dangled within reach for years only relocating from their spot when a new {old} gadget joined the family. Sometimes though, the gadgets fought back. We had a condo kitchen. It was tucked into the front of the condo but accessible from all around. There was a sliding door that could be closed to inhibit entry from the front hall and door but we only closed that on Halloween when we would fill the mirrored hallway with candles, my mother's doll collection and a hand-stuffed dummy or two. Otherwise, the kitchen could be circled through over and over again. It was a great place for chasing the cat, dog or each other but if you weren't too careful, you could collide with kitchen gadgets and get bit, pinched or slightly grated.
Being a person who carries her history on her sleeve, I really wanted my own swath of pegboard to display the kitchen gadgets I inherited. Wall-space and moolah not on our side, mister put together this blue board of happiness and in keeping with tradition, we have hung it up on the ledge between the kitchen and the living room, a perfectly precarious spot in a state prone to shakes, rattles and rolls. Just don't stand under in case of a seismic dance party (note that nifty chopper, blades pointed down), otherwise, you are free to roam.

Friday, November 11, 2011

eleven eleven eleven

no rain, yet.
but there was wind, cold wind.
signs always make me happy.
11:11 on the 101
thrifting was involved.
a task all on its own.
rainy day work in progess which i began months ago...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

thrift score: typewriter, fire king and more, oh my!

The mister & I have begun a thing where we spend Sunday mornings poking around the Goodwill Outlet store here in town. We've found much for the tiny casa there and sometimes I swing by when I have an urge to thrift but not much cash on hand. I scored this batch o' goodness more than a week ago for the lovely low price of $6.75. the typewriter even has its own case. I lurve it all!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

the november bed

Yesterday's list never made it out of the noggin. It slumped there, halfway formed but kept fading like a puddle on a hot sidewalk. There were a great many things I should have done yesterday. Instead, I baked scones (from a mix), did laundry, wiped down the bathroom, sent in the application (position was already filled, grrr), pitched two new articles (success!), put away the STACK of picture books I had out, cleaned off the table, put an enormous stack of linens away, washed the dishes, made dinner, the bed, and a garland for the bed. Oh and I also watched a movie. Phew! That was a lot but none of it was really on the list. The BIG list, at least. That is, except for making the bed.
It is getting chillier up here on the central coast and thank goodness our heater now works, though I haven't turned it on yet, I just pile on the blankets and wear a sweater. It's not that cold but it gets cooler inside than outside so if I am not warm enough, I get lazy and resort to blanket lounging.So, since it is cool, we have been keeping the two quilts on the bed and I decided to stick with the ENORMOUS bedspread and added new pillowcases and a bottom sheet for contrast.
And, because I am all about dressing it up and garlands and a need for creating, I scrounged up a handful of origami paper from a large blue suitcase I have that holds my paper stash (it appears I am low on fun paper). All squares were the same size so I stacked them up, scalloped the bottoms and stitched them together with my sewing machine. Pretty, darn happy, no?
Oh, do you like the parasols? Getting those up an arranged just about drove the mister cuckoo but he persevered and put up with my hemming and hawing and now they look super happy. It helps that they also block out the too-bright overhead light and break up the expanse of white walls and ceiling.
Happy November and happy new bed!