Saturday, December 31, 2011
December 31, 1931 - May 27, 2010
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Santa brought Newton and Einstein a can of tuna for Christmas. I think they enjoyed it. I couldn't get them to look at the camera, they were so focused on their fish.
I doubt they noticed that they were eating off of festive holiday dishes. Presentation doesn't impress felines.
Sunday, December 25, 2011
This service is available during the following hours (Eastern Time):
Monday through Friday: 5:00 AM - 1:00 AM
Saturday: 5:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Sunday: 8:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Holidays: 5:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Pardon me for thinking, but isn't an on-line application process available for the convenience of people at home at odd hours who may prefer to get things done while wearing their pajamas? Will someone who is smarter or who has inside information please explain this to me! Thank you.
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Thursday, December 22, 2011
A Winter Solstice Dream
In these darkest days of winter
The solstice eve draws near
We contemplate all that has come to pass
Anticipate the upcoming new year
Evergreen and holly we invite inside
With their color and fragrance decorate
Reminders that spring will come once more
The seasons’ cycle we celebrate
When sleep steals away your worries and cares
On this longest and starry night
I wish for you slumber, restful and deep
Filled with dreams of comfort and light
I wish for you the waking-world courage
To live those dreams, precious and bold
I wish for you the warmth and love that returns
When given freely and wholly, tenfold
I wrote this poem in December of 2006. It feels like a new years' wish as well, which is also celebrated at the solstice by many. Whatever your particular beliefs or customs are this time of year, I wish you a joyous celebration and that you find yourself among those that you love.
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
It seems that my ex and his girlfriend of six years have decided to get married. No date has been chosen nor any of the other details determined. And I feel a little stunned. I have no lingering desire to reconcile with my ex, it's been over for me for a much longer time than the divorce has been final. I'm actually happy for them. So why do I feel so, well, odd? While this isn't the least little bit about me, I suppose it just points out to me that I am still alone. Still available. Still un-paired. Still hogging the middle of my queen size bed. And I know that it's better to be alone than be in a bad marriage or unsatisfying relationship. Maybe I feel this so sharply because I was so recently reminded of the comforts and joys of being involved with a man when I was seeing Reg. I had almost forgotten.
So I've been annoyed by the tacky brass light fixtures in my bathroom for a while. And I found a very nice black iron three light fixture for over the vanity. Very reasonably priced as well as on sale at Menard's. You would think the next part would be easy. Just a simple, flush-mount (I have to giggle at the mention of flush-mount for a bathroom light fixture!) one or two bulb, white glass globe with the metal in a flat black finish for under twenty bucks. But no! Such a thing does not exist! They have white ones and alabaster ones and ones that come in a rubbed bronze finish. Often they show up as part of a contractor's pack or in packs of two. I only need one! One black one! I was ready to pull down the tacky brass one and have at it with a can of spray paint. But I thought I'd Google the item in mind just to see what might show up. And what should show up after about a twenty minute search but this gorgeous fixture! For twenty dollars and twenty cents and free shipping! $20.20! I wasn't planning on going this fancy but isn't it gorgeous! Cheaper by five to ten bucks than the plain ones! I can't wait to lie back in a tub full of bubbles and steamy water and gaze up at this light. Really, all I wanted was pretty much what I have only in a different color. But this will more than do.
Sunday, December 18, 2011
But just yesterday Lowe's already was marking decorations, et al, down 30%! In my walk through I discovered this pink leopard print Santa hat with sparkles in the faux fur trim. It spoke to me. It seems that when you start out with an original price of $8.97, lop off 30%, then add in local sales tax, the final cost is $6.66. I'm thinking of wearing this hat and quaffing a soda!
Saturday, December 17, 2011
I suppose it's just the time of year. The feeling of gratitude for what I have in my life as well as longing for what has passed. I miss my mom and my little brother. And I love this photo of the two of them together. It was snapped at my mom's when she was living in Sioux Falls, around 1990 if my memory serves me. More than twenty years have passed between then and now. And it's astonishing to me how much Cullen resembles Mom. And I see and hear them in my own two sons. Comforting that little bits of them live on.
This is April. I stayed out until after midnight with her! We are sad that she is leaving for grad school far away. So we wish her well in this next chapter of her life. Oh, and I didn't turn into a pumpkin! But I will never, ever again eat the hash browns thingy at Cook's Kitchen after the bars close. I have survived it once and do not wish to push my luck. It was the chew-like residue lurking at the bottom of my cup of Coke that nearly did me in. I declined to pay for my beverage, even though the waitress assured me the gunk was likely something in the line that broke loose rather than sabotage. I have now been out on the town two nights this week. Today may very likely be a pajamas day. April, I am placing you in the very capable care of my sis Martine. Enjoy the desert. You will be a kick-ass librarian!
Thursday, December 15, 2011
My favorite bass player, Andrew Reinartz, dreamlike in all that lovely blue light.
The beautiful and talented Allison Mickelson. I feel a kinship with her in that we have both survived North Dakota winters.
The entire Holiday Jam lineup. All nine of them. Is it crazy of me to want to see this show again? I am a Jam Groupie!
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Until tomorrow! The only decent shot I managed at Holiday Jam. That's Jeremy Hegg center stage on the keyboards. Just to the left and toward the dark blue recesses of the stage is bassmaster extraordinaire Andrew Reinartz. To the right on guitar is Xopher Smith. Xopher does a mean rendition of that Grinch song. The one about garlic in your soul. You know, where you wouldn't touch him with a thirty-nine and a half foot pole. Which reminds me of a joke. The punch line of which is, ja, I'm a Pole, but how did you know my name was Walter? Holiday Jam was fabulous. More pics tomorrow. Oh, and I'll never again hear What Child is This without also thinking of bull fighting. Just quietly, though.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Monday, December 12, 2011
Santa Claus makes a list. Then checks it twice. Proof that perhaps Mr. Claus is a bit OCD? Maybe he just drinks too much coffee. When I make a list, I like to include at least one item that I have already accomplished. Makes me feel efficient. Almost on top of things rather than straggling pitifully behind. See if you can guess how many items on the following list are checked off! Damn. I'm awesome.
1. Drink coffee
2. Make bed
4. Check email and Facebook
5. Get packages sent off!
6. Get Reid to his 1pm appointment
7. Once again clean up that vicious cycle of a kitchen
8. Complete daily crossword. Correctly. In ink.
9. Shower and dress
10. Pick up that short list of items at Wal-Mart
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Lawyer #1: I like to start at the top, so I contacted the premiere law firm in the state that exclusively handles work comp cases. He was interested, but after several weeks of information discovery, apologized for not taking my case. His wife had been diagnosed with a brain tumor. And he's apologizing to me. Because under the circumstances he didn't feel he could do a good job representing me. He recommended a couple of colleagues, so I contacted them.
Lawyer #2: After considerable copying and mailing and emailing of documents, he regrettably informed me that his firm was not interested in my case. Not because it lacked merit, but because it would not settle for a high enough dollar amount for the number of hours work it would require. This firm runs a tv ad where the senior partner looks earnestly into the camera and assures the viewing audience that they are there to help. Which I now react to with a snort and eye roll. He recommended another law firm.
Lawyer #3: Called and left a voice mail. He did not inspire my confidence when he called back. His medical knowledge of my particular injury was at least ten years in arrears. He kept repeating the term objective verification. And wasn't aware there is a difference between motor nerve function and sympathetic nerve function.
Lawyer #4: The one #2 recommended. I called and left a voice mail. He never called me back.
Lawyer #5: I called the lawyer who handled my divorce. Several phone calls and emails and initial advice later, we finally have a productive meeting. I feel hopeful. Six to nine months to resolution, he says. Let the paper chase begin.
Friday, December 9, 2011
Thursday, December 8, 2011
I do love a Venn Diagram. So a holiday themed Venn has got to be just that much better. Whoever created this, you are brilliant and funny. And Santa most definitely has you on his Nice list. Makes me want to dig out my Spirograph. If I can find it. If I still have it. Santa?
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Note: I should have explained that my source of aggravation was a post on Facebook that read I'm going to say Merry Christmas instead of the more pc Happy Holidays to reflect the true meaning of Christmas. Repost if you agree. The things that rile me up! Oy!
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Two...cats who like to chomp on light strings
Three...trees in my bedroom adorned only with golden lights and pine cones
Four...items backordered at Barnes & Noble!
Five...days til my deadline for getting packages sent, complicated by item Four
Six...delectable turkey pot pies in the freezer
Seven...trees up and decorated!
Eight...days til Holiday Jam!
Nine...December 9th, first real meeting with lawyer!
Ten...when I should have gone to bed
Monday, December 5, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
Saturday, December 3, 2011
Please remember to place the renewal stickers onto the license plates before you go anywhere in the car. Or risk being ticketed, pulled over, or otherwise fined. Since they are right there in plain sight on the passenger seat they ought to be difficult to ignore. But I often miss the obvious. Thank you.
Friday, December 2, 2011
Thursday, December 1, 2011
What is that nasty smell? It's decidedly different from the nasty smell of yesterday. Although the location is the same. The laundry room. Which contains all manner of things capable of producing stinkiness. Including, but not limited to, dirty socks. Yesterday the smell was sewer gas. Easily remedied by pouring a gallon or so of water in the floor drain to fill the trap. It dries out a couple of times a year. But today, what is that? Not the washing machine lint trap. Not a dead mouse in the corner. Not any of the various leavings of one of the cats. Hmm. It was not until I tossed a sizable chunk of dryer lint into the trash and was met with a wave of nasty rebounding toward me that I remembered. Remembered that when I prepped the turkey for roasting last weekend, which I do in the laundry room where there is a very large sink, I tossed that little paper bag of turkey innards as well as the packaging for said turkey into the trash! Stinky mystery solved. As for that haybale of dryer lint that was the result of drying a plushy afghan, how is it that there is any remaining blanket after a couple of washings? This mystery remains.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Are we counting the teensy ones that sit on top of tables as well as the larger ones that sit on the floor? Ten, tops, I would estimate, however you might count them. Like I always say, decorating for Christmas, it's a process, not an event. And I'll be getting on with that process just as soon as I pack away all those pesky pumpkins and cutesy colorful corncobs. I can't wait to see what I bought on clearance after Christmas last year. Stash it and forget about it, that's what I do. Then eleven months later it's a nice little pre-Christmas surprise. I do love 75 to 90% off.
Monday, November 28, 2011
A white pickup truck pulls into the driveway this morning. It is sporting on its doors the logo of my internet service provider. We rejoice, for the man is here to upgrade us to fiber optic service! He took away our old modem and replaced it with a shiny new gizmo that has pretty lights. It is now possible for Reid to visit Blockland and watch his Brony show at the very same time that I am viewing Netflix! Without pixilation and retrieval issues. I have four out of four on the picture quality scale. Our bandwidth has more than doubled. Which makes it more possible for the occupants of this house to be in separate rooms with our electronic entertainment devices and interact with each other even less! I think this is called hibernation.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
I am grateful for men who are wonderful kissers. And Reg was most definitely one of them. Note the deliberate use of past tense. As I expect I shall never enjoy that particular pleasure with him ever again. The memory lingers, though, of three most especially. In chronological order, then, the three kisses with Reg that remain with me.
1. First, the first. In his car in the Barnes & Noble parking lot. A little aggressive, it got my attention. His left hand rested on my knee, his right hand lightly on my cheek. I was breathless. In a good way.
2. In the driveway at his house, he was leaving for work, I was leaving for home. He rolled down the window, I leaned in. Sweet. We smiled.
3. On the couch that he hates, after dinner. Prefaced by Reg saying, I meant to do this earlier. I melted into a puddle, never to be the same.
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
During the twenty years of my marriage, a sore point was how casually his family threw together holiday plans. Who was hosting, who was bringing what, the communication involved to bring it all together was sadly lacking. I just found out this afternoon that, indeed, a local family dinner has been planned. Two weeks ago, when I inquired of the ex what the Thanksgiving plans might be, he had no idea. Within a few days I decided that in the absence of family plans, Reid and I would have our own feast, just the two of us. Roast a turkey, sweet potatoes, dressing, pies, all the good stuff. As of this afternoon, 48 hours before meal time, my turkey was thawing in the fridge and I had purchased all the necessary groceries for Thursday. I was annoyed. Which was followed by an obvious conclusion. Reid should not be denied the opportunity to gather with extended family just because they have lousy communication skills and I have a turkey defrosting. I'll cook my turkey later this weekend. Reserve my Thursday for baking pies, drinking some wine and hogging the bandwidth. After all, due to my smaller and geographically scattered family, their father's extended family is the family our sons grew up around. I guess I could pout about it. But the reality is that I'll likely spend a fair number of future holidays alone. I need to come up with a new set of traditions to celebrate them, as well as keeping the possibility open to blending my traditions with those of others who may become significant to me. Family is not a static thing, it's a fluid group of people that gains and loses members over the years. So if I'm invited, you can count on me to bring the pie. Trust me, you'll be thankful I did.
To facilitate the getting over him process, I have discovered laugh therapy. I'm not entirely sure how this idea came to me. Perhaps it has been lurking in the dark recesses of my brain, just waiting for the proper time to reveal itself. In any case it works. I recommend it. First, identify a particular habit or quirky behavior expressed by your former lover. Then, picture them naked while engaging in this idiosyncratic activity. Just try not to laugh. Suppress it until bladder leakage seems imminent. Hold it in as long as you possibly can. Chew on the insides of your cheeks if necessary. When you finally cut loose, it is preferable to preface the actual laughter with a hearty snort. Repeat as necessary. Insert a laugh track or other background noises if you like. I employ Mary Chapin Carpenter's infectious giggle from the bonus track at the end of time*sex*love*. I also imagine Mary Chapin standing there with me, her arm about my shoulders as we snort and guffaw. The support of a girlfriend is always helpful. Thanks, Reg, for supplying me with such an excellent and evocative visual. It may seem like a mean thing to do, but hey, in retrospect I don't know how I managed not to laugh when I witnessed you do this particular thing. Which demonstrates what a kind person I truly am.
Sunday, November 20, 2011
I was seized with the desire to view Love Actually. Fortunately, I have it on dvd. I armed myself with a beverage, a munchie and a fluffy blanky and settled into my chair. Just as our story is opening, the subtitle Five weeks before Christmas appears across the bottom of the screen. As it happens, today is precisely five weeks before Christmas. Cosmic. I feel inspired to learn Portuguese as well as how to play the drums. Also makes me wonder what the counterpart for Wisconsin might be for me. Any ideas?
Saturday, November 19, 2011
Friday, November 18, 2011
It's probably ancient history
I'm one of the chosen few
Who went ahead and fell for you
I'm out of vogue, I'm out of touch
I fell too fast, I feel too much
I thought that you might have some advice to give
On how to be insensitive
Jann Arden sang those words seventeen years ago. I just watched the video. Ironic that we have the same hairstyle. At least I do now, she did then. Seventeen years, hmmm. That's a fashion cycle, right?
Just in case any of you were wondering how I accomplished this, or perhaps what was inside this, have I got an answer for you. Allow me to introduce the Solia limited edition flat iron. In pink. Haircut by the lovely Amelia at the Sunflower, smooth by Solia. What more could -ia ask for.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Will someone please explain to me how my package got to me more quickly and efficiently when UPS dropped it at the Post Office yesterday afternoon for delivery to me today? Couldn't UPS have simply delivered it directly to me yesterday afternoon? A day earlier with no middleman? Am I making this too complicated?
Monday, November 14, 2011
It has just come to my attention, courtesy of the Sandwich Monday gang at Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me, that there is a Secret Menu at McDonald's. From which an abomination called a Land, Sea, and Air Burger can be ordered. It consists of a hamburger patty, a fish filet and a chicken patty all on one bun. I don't know about you, but to me it seems to be missing something. There ought to be gravy. Or maple syrup or cheese sauce, perhaps a fried egg on top. Eating this sandwich, or even seeing one in person, is not on my bucket list. Be afraid.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
When a marriage dissolves, many relationships remain. I will always think of Audrey as my mother-in-law, even though I am no longer married to her son. She was recently in the hospital battling pneumonia and went home last week. Yesterday she returned to the hospital via ambulance after having suffered a small stroke. Reid and I visited her yesterday and I was flooded with memories of my own mother when she was hospitalized a year and a half ago. Astonished by how frail she is, how soft her voice has become. There is still a sharpness and intelligence in her eyes though mostly she rests. She seems to have an awareness of the company gathered in her room. It feels a bit like a vigil though she may very well rally from this latest health complication and return to her home. The likely unspoken question on all her children's minds is will she be able to continue to live independently? Should she continue to drive? I wish her well. And understand so clearly what my ex-husband and his siblings are going through.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Friday, November 11, 2011
Where was I, you might ask. Hurriedly getting in the shower because as I was lounging about in my jammies I realized my hair appointment was just an hour away! My newly trimmed hair is air drying to see how the cut works with curl. Tomorrow we shall see how it works straight. At this very moment my assessment is favorable of Amelia's work. The shoulder and scalp massage and the coffee were very nice perks (pun intended) that have landed me squarely in a very happy frame of mind. My hair just feels better with all the dry ends gone. In addition to today's auspicious date, another milestone was achieved with my last blog posting. Amazingly enough, it was my 1000th. Now if I was one to plan ahead, it would have been my 1110th. So today's post could have been my 1111th. A totally mystical numerical cosmic alignment! I'll settle for a great haircut, though, if that's what this turns out to be. I would be more than happy for Amelia to be my new Kim.