Saturday, December 31, 2011

NYE at My House

I'd like mine in a bowl, please.

Happy 2012!!

Why does she get so excited when this thing makes noise?

Miss You, Mom

Edna Karen Ruud Broome
December 31, 1931 - May 27, 2010

She loved Christmas. And her rickety wood yard swing that she held onto despite the years baking in the Arizona sun that had rendered it unfit for much more than firewood. She loved my father. And despite the fact that they were twice-divorced, I don't think she ever got over him. She cheated death at the age of two when she miraculously recovered from pneumonia. And again at twenty when she collapsed on a Denver street from acute appendicitis while walking to work. I remember her visiting my second grade class, wearing that orange sleeveless dress with the white piping at the neck. Your Mom is so pretty! was what I heard for days afterwards. More than almost anything she loved the fact that the entire world celebrated her birthday. She would have been eighty today.

Thursday, December 29, 2011


Sometimes, when I'm sitting very still watching a movie...outside myself and lost in the story and I've had a glass of wine...I'm all nestled into my chair under the big fuzzy blanket...with a dozing cat keeping my feet toasty isn't until Reid bounds up the basement stairs and looks at me expectantly...and I reach for the Roku remote to pause...moving breaks the spell. My hands feel perfectly normal. Until I need to use them. I imagine it's something like waking up and discovering you're still in jail. You want to pull up the blanket and crawl back inside that dream where everything is fine. Sweet while it lasts but shatters and falls away so abruptly.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Too Good To Be True

They said it was a pricing error on their website. They apologized and cancelled my order. So, I suggest if you shop here, and run across an unbelievable bargain, it may very well be. I am mildly disappointed. Should they have honored their posted price? They're not legally obligated to. But then there's the other side of the satisfied customer coin. Since a satisfied customer is more likely to be a repeat customer. Like offer me a discount or giftcard to use on a future purchase. Or actually honor the price that they posted. A little good will goes a long way.

Two of Seven

No, not a Borg designation, which is a reasonable guess. We're talking the Seven Deadlies, as in sin. When asked why we limited our family size to two children, which I thought was an overly personal question from those who had the nerve to inquire, we came up with a clever answer which we were able to recite with a straight face. Well, Michael slept through the night at six weeks, and Reid eats us out of house and home. We thought we'd stop at sloth and gluttony. Who knows which of the remaining five deadly sins we might have produced next! Followed by a Cheshire cat smile. The person who asked often backed away while nodding with an expression of masked horror on their face. If you don't want to know, don't ask, that's what I always say.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Fish Wish Granted

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

We are Closed

How can an on-line application page post hours that they are open for business? Why would anything on the web have hours of operation when no direct human contact is necessary? How does this make any sense at all? They did leave a sign on the door:

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

Merry Grinchmas!

Welcome to our formal Christmas Eve. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have dinner to cook. And a bottle of wine is calling my name.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Packaging Poser

I need scissors to open the packaging on the new pair of scissors. Go ahead and run with them, I'm sure it will be safe. Where's the reciprocating saw? Maybe the blowtorch is better...

It was a Dark and Starry Night

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

Feeling Un-Friendly

Phone call last night. Since I had deleted her number from my contacts, I didn't know who it was. I answered more out of reflex than anything. Damn. We were the single girl co-workers who spent a number of evenings out together over a couple of years' time. It was fun, it was certainly entertaining. But there was always some sort of weird drama situation. Progressively the weird drama overtook the fun portion of the evening, and I began to back away from the friendship. Aside from the drama queen goings-on when we were out together, she had a great deal of drama going on in her personal life as well as on-the-job. Circumstances that she seemed to bring on herself and then bemoan the spot she landed in. I was horrified by the way she treated more than one mutual friend. Eventually when she couldn't keep various versions of her story straight, I didn't know when to believe her. A couple of times I questioned her when she contradicted herself and was met with outright hostility. I backed away even further, going so far as to not answer my phone when she called. Then she moved away. At least in part due to her self-inflicted problems at work and at home. I felt a sense of relief. Now she wants to get together next time she's in town and I have no desire to see her. My dilemma is whether to let her calls go to voice mail, lie about not being available for lunch, or be honest and tell her I'm just not interested in maintaining a friendship with her. None of these are appealing choices. If only when you deleted someone's number from your contacts, it auto-deleted from theirs' as well.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

This Just In

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.

Let There be Light!

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

Is Two a Trend?

Behold! My holiday headgear collection! To help with the holiday mood, pop in the Celtic Thunder Christmas cd, wrap some presents, and don a festive holiday hat! I usually pick up a new one or two in the post-Christmas clearance.

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

Miss You

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.

ByeBye April!

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

More Jam

The Hegg brothers, Jon and Jeremy, doing a little sibling rivalry dance around the keyboard.

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

Just Couldn't Wait...

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.

Countdown to Jam!

Holiday Jam, Brookings edition, in 46 minutes! There are still seats to be had! Be there! I will be. And I smell pretty. I thought you might like to know, just in case you're lucky enough to sit next to me.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Bellona's Triangle

Sometimes it takes a visual to clarify and nail down a thought in the nebulous fog that is my brain. As I was addressing packages to send to my loved ones, which means, yes, I failed to get them sent yesterday, it occurred to me that the points on the map would form a triangle when connected. This was obvious, three points connected always form a triangle. No getting around that. But there it was, near the center of the triangle. The Denver, Colorado area. Where I've been thinking for some time would be the optimal place for me to move. Near a major airport, making flights to the three points in question easily accessible. Hey, even road trips would be quite feasible. I have friends (LindaCo and Deanna!) in the neighborhood. It's beautiful there! Winters are milder! As Deanna would say, I must ponder, plot and plan. First, settle this business with my hands. In the meantime, work on launching Reid. This could most definitely work.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Making a List

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

3. Blog

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

He's Heeeeeeeeere!

We're not sure when this happened. The moose aren't talking...

...but it seems that the CAP* has been here.

*The dreaded Christmas Anagram Poltergeist

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Attorney Aquisition

I have legal representation! He thinks I have a good case. He is the fifth lawyer I contacted, meaning there were four before him. A brief (haha) rundown:

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

Live, From My Back Yard!

You may remember Edgar, my anatomically correct garden statue. He's been here before, sometimes snow covered, maybe dressed up in a seasonal costume. Perhaps hanging out with attractive, beer-swilling women. Earlier today, Reid noticed that Newton was a little worked up over whatever he was observing on the other side of the patio door. Usually it's not very interesting. Newt gets all in a tither over leaves blowing around. But today was different. Newt had noticed something new! Edgar seems to have acquired a squirrel hat. Like he thinks he's a Team Fortress Two character or something. Kind of a dime store Daniel Boone. All I know is, it was chilly out there, maybe 20 degrees or so. And that squirrel's butt is going to get frostbite before Edgar's head warms up.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Santa Can You Hear Me?

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


Please accept this post in the spirit in which it is offered. Which is the spirit of peace, tolerance, inclusion, and appreciation of diversity. Even though it is springing from downright aggravation. So allow me to vent for just a moment. Attention Christians who reside in this country! You do not own the Winter Solstice! Celebrate it as you choose with your traditions and beliefs but do not, I repeat, do not, impose your version of this holiday on everyone else! There. I feel better. There is no mystery to me as to why this time of year is crowded with holidays and celebrations in so many varied cultures and religions in so many locations. From ancient times, man has watched the sky and found significance in the observable changes in the stars and planets and our own beloved satellite, the Moon. Also tied in are the changes of the seasons and the associated activities involved. The cycle of life and the mystery and imagination of what it means to be human. Respect the right of all people to celebrate according to their cultural and spiritual customs rather than labeling a particular practice or greeting inappropriate. There is no right or wrong here. There is no mine is better than yours. There is cultural and religious diversity that should be met with respect and tolerance. We can only benefit from embracing the richness and beauty of our differences.

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

Top Ten on the 6th

One...Christmas card received!

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


Somewhere around the middle of October, Reg dropped out of Facebook. He said it had become a chore, something he didn't have time for. He hadn't recently posted status updates or any new photos. He informed his three hundred-plus friends that he would be pulling the plug. He complained just a bit that few of his friends acknowledged that post. He said he would return soon but he felt he was a better person for trying to withdraw from this online community. Reg managed to resist the urge to reactivate his account for less than two months time. And how does moi have knowledge of this fact? I happened to be on Facebook last evening sending messages to a couple of friends and ran across a message I had sent him in September, before we had met in person. I couldn't resist. I clicked on his name and, voila!, there was his info page! Reg was back, though I have no idea when he reinstated his account. I also had made a friendship request in September, which he had not accepted before he went offline. Now that he was back, I felt it was appropriate to rescind that request. Feels a bit like our real world relationship. I withdrew what I had offered because he went into hiding. Is it possible that real life shall imitate Facebook? That Reg might resurface as a candidate for boyfriend status? I'm not sure that I would click like for that notion. But there is my old friend BotD. Like I told Reg the most recent time we were together, the only way we'll know is in the living of it. Walk through it and see how it unfolds. I think it's called life.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


Karen and I got a little preview of Holiday Jam this evening. If you love live music, and you love celebrating the Christmas season and you love a fun night out you will love this!!! If Holiday Jam is playing anywhere near you, I command you to buy a ticket and enjoy yourself at this most outstanding musical event! They'll be here in Brookings on December 14th, and we are fortunate for this. I'm getting tickets tomorrow. And this has nothing to do with the fact that I have a teensy crush on the bass player.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Note to Self...

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

One Found Thing

Maybe I should move my furniture more often. You know, and vacuum. Because sometimes you find things. Things that cats like to play with. Turns out, Colleen knew what she was talking about. When I moved the dresser in my bedroom, what should be lurking there underneath but three knotted plastic bags (Newt's favorite plaything), two bottle caps (Steinie's favorite plaything), and one large red faceted fake gem. Which has now been glued back onto the pull chain on the ceiling fan. As to Steinie's guilt, if an object consorts with other cat toys, it might just be one, too. Still no word from the black & white photos or the missing cell phone

Thursday, December 1, 2011

It Wasn't Me! Really!

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

Turkey Gobbler, er, Cobbler?

Even if I do say so myself, my first attempt at turkey pot pie was a smashing success. I meant to take a picture of it. So lovely and steaming and crispy on top as it emerged from the oven. But it's gone. All gone. Good thing there are six little ones on their way to the freezer to enjoy later. Amazing what you can do with leftover turkey and gravy. I sauteed a sweet potato, onion, celery and mushrooms together in a little olive oil and stirred it all together. After placing about half of this into a baking dish I sealed up the top with your standard pastry crust, crimped the edges and poked some decorative holes. Since the filling was already cooked, it only took about twenty minutes in the oven til the crust was lightly browned. It really was beautiful. As well as delicious. Wish I'd managed to snap a photo. I feel a nap coming on...they're not kidding about that L-tryptophan.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Count

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

That Which Remains

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.

Irrational Pie

Proof that pie are square. At least around here, they are. Gotta love those corner pieces! I apologize for overuse and perhaps inappropriate use of italics.

Nieces are the Best!

The best combination of daughter and friend! Megan dropped by yesterday. We had lunch. We talked of many things and caught up on each others' lives. She is headed back home to Wisconsin today. Let's all wish her safe travels.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Shopping in my Pajamas

Please don't hate me. But I have just now completed Christmas shopping. For this, I am thankful. Go back to your turkey, football and pie.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Satanic Soda

Proof that high fructose corn syrup is, indeed, spawn of the devil.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Giving of Thanks

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.

Laugh Therapy

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

Timing, Actually

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?


Almost black & white

That's Vladimir, shivering in the corner of his deck pot under his blanket of snow.

White on white

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Country Life

At Colleen's house, the funky pumpkin gets its own spot to sit. And I helped with the chicken round-up. Then we drank some sangria. I snuggled with Old Red on the couch. Later, I drove home under a clear, clear eleven degree winter sky. I saw Orion and a quarter moon hung among the twinkles looking like a humongous orange segment. And a shooting star. That I wished on.

And So, It Ends

Truth be told, it fell to me to break things off. Left to Reg it would have been relationship death through attrition. At some point, he would simply have stopped responding to text messages. If I called he would have let it go to voice mail. When asked directly, his reply was that he didn't know what to tell me. That he wasn't able, didn't have it in him, to give me what I wanted. Backtrack a month, when we discussed our wants and needs, we came to a mutual agreement. Just over a week ago he said, we'll run off for a weekend together soon and we'll work it out. My feathered thing flew, stayed aloft, my benefit of the doubt was standing firm. Then, last night, after a week of indifferent and seemingly reluctant communication from him, I needed to know. If we were on or off. What I'll likely never know is what happened to move us off of the same page. Yes, he has a demanding job. Yes, he has some unresolved health issues. It's not the best time for either of us. But you make time for the things and people in your life that you deem important. I felt I had found a kindred spirit. I was willing to take the time to let it unfold, to see what we might become to each other. There is no perfect time to make any big decision. If we all played it safe and wallowed in the negative, there would be no babies or career changes or moves halfway across the country. There would be no castles, no airplanes, no scientific breakthroughs, no great novels, no new achievements of any kind. There would certainly be no leap of faith toward love. I don't know how Reg feels today. I don't really even know how he feels about me. What I do know is that from the moment I saw him smile, I plunged forward with hope and anticipation and an open heart. With no agenda, no snap judgements and (mostly) no fear. So I'm a little sad today. But I remain resilient and optimistic. And perplexed as to why my desire to pair bond with a man is so strong.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Dedicated to Reg

Oh, you probably won't remember me
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?

Yet Another Pink Appliance

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

Special Delivery

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?

Lunch, Etc.

Lunch with Colleen yesterday. Here. Fabulous! The potato leek soup is to die for. I can't wait to return and sample the dinner menu! Lunch out is so much more fun when it's a complete surprise. Colleen dropped by to find me still in my bathrobe! We also shopped. Just a little. Colleen still works part time at the seed lab, my former employer. Work is where we met six years ago, and it hardly seems like it was that long ago. On the other hand, I feel like I've known her my whole life. Maybe even in another life. She said the invites for the annual Christmas party were recently distributed. Her hubby expressed a less than enthusiastic feeling about attending, and suggested Colleen should take me instead! As it happens, he will be going. But the whole idea of me attending after being summarily dismissed from my job there after a year of disability leave sounds like so much fun! Oh, the people who would be riled up by my presence! Tantalizing little fantasy, I must admit. A couple glasses of wine and I'd be in lampshade/working the room mode with everyone. Probably laying it on way too thick with the management and enjoying every minute of their collective annoyance and discomfort. On the other hand, it would have been a very enjoyable opportunity to see so many people who I really like and miss, and in whose company I used to spend some very long days. Always enjoyed the work, always enjoyed most of the people. What I'm left with is the feeling that I would love for this issue of my damaged hands to be settled. For everyone concerned. I'll throw my own little celebration on that day. Which I hope arrives soon. Y'all are invited.

Monday, November 14, 2011

If Everyone Knows, Is it Still a Secret?

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

Still My MIL

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

Taming the Fright Wig

Roseanne Rosannadanna, eat your heart out!

A little product + a little flatiron = Smooth!

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.