Saturday, January 31, 2009

Oh Kkay....

K. That's my letter. The letter assigned to me by Betty (I think Koda was off surveying his domain).

Now, I'm to list 10 things I love that begin with the letter K. I don't know if I should list them from 1(being my favorite) to 10(last on the list), or if I should do it the other way around. So I'm adopting a randomness of order. Kind of just the order I thought of them in(I made a list).

1. Kraut-as in Sauer Kraut. This may actually "Be" my #1 favorite on the list, it's kind of a toss up.

2. Kittens-I was reminded of just how much this past fall, when the cat that hung around outside, had 3 and I got to cuddle them. I miss them, but am glad they found new homes.

3. Knitting-I learned how to knit when I was very young(5 or 6). My Mom taught me. Looking back on it now, I think I just went back and forth and when she checked it for mistakes, she'd knit a little and tell me how well I was doing. I did eventually get it right. I haven't gotten out my needles in quite a while......

4. Kisses-As in Hershey's Kisses. I love chocolate in many forms, but I think just plain, all by itself, is the best. Of course, I love other kinds of kisses, too, but I don't get many of those nowadays.

5. Kleenex Pompoms-Weird, I know. I was a Girl Scout and we always entered a float in local parades and made probably millions of them-grocery bags full.....

6. Kahlua-I hope I spelled this right. One of the reasons I love Kahlua so much is that it reminds me of a friend I spent time with in Ohio. We used to sip Kahlua and coffee for hours, contemplating life, and watching her girls and animals antics. Good times!

7. Kansas-Not the state, the band. You know, "Dust in the Wind", "Carry On Wayward Son", and many more that not everyone would recognize. They have their own playlist on my MP3 player!

8. Keilbasa-Which of course is the perfect complement for Kraut(see #1). In the oven, simmered for an hour with butter and caraway seeds.

9. Keleva, MI-I know this is a place that no one who reads this will have heard of. There's an interesting story to this. I have never actually been there and the place I really mean is a river bend a couple miles from there. See, my brother calls any form of cooked cabbage, sauer kraut tops that list, well, he calls it Toxic Waste. Relegates it to 55 gallon drums to be sunk to the bottom of the ocean. He goes on fishing trips to this particular river bend a couple times a year and that is when I get to have sauer kraut, or fried cabbage, or boiled dinner, to my heart's content. Hence the love of a place I've never been!

10. Kosher Dill Pickles-Last but certainly not least on this list. The crunchier and more garlic the better!

This list was harder to compile than I thought it would be. It took me a couple days to find things that start with K, that I love.

If you'd like to take on the challenge of this list meme, please leave me a comment and I'll draw a letter out of a hat for you. I'd omit Q, X, and Z. I was going to leave Y out, but I thought of several things that started with Y so thats not so hard! :) I'll e-mail you or leave you a comment with your letter.

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Oops, I Forgot...

If you would like to do this meme, please feel free to request a letter in a comment here or in the last entry. I'll select a letter for your post(an easy one, I promise), and send you an e-mail or comment setting your task!

It'll be fun!

p.s. Q is out of the question, too. Told you it'd be easy!

In The Want Ads.

Help Wanted: Seeking applicants for temporary volunteer positions as Muse. Muses-R-Us has several openings available for short term "employment" as an inspiration prompter. No prior experience necessary. Skills required: Ability to ask a question geared toward inspiring individual posts for clients whose Muses are MIA. Topic prompts other than question form are also welcome. Please submit application and sample question in comments section.

Perhaps this is just the shot of motivation needed when a Muse thinks to slack off, or take an extended holiday. Threaten to replace her!

This morning, I was struck with inspiration. Why it didn't occur to me before I composed my post last night, I don't know.

While my Muse saw fit to leave me to my own devices, I could certainly ask others for a tip, a topic-get by with a little help from my friends!

So here's the deal. This is your chance to ask me a question, or suggest a topic. Pretty much anything goes-except for politics, science, math, and fashion-those, I truly do know nothing about.

I have one entry to work on already. Betty and Koda participated in a meme where you are assigned a letter and then you write about 10 things that you love that begin with that letter. They invited their readers to play along so I commented that I would indeed like to play. She did mention that X, Y, and Z would not be selections. I have my letter and will begin working on this tonight.

In the meantime, please post your application and sample question for Muses-R-Us. All applicants will be seriously considered. Thank You! ::giggles::

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

My Muse Has Left The Building....

I do believe my creative Muse has taken a long winter vacation to some warm sunny beach. The bit@& didn't invite me along, didn't even tell me where she was going or how long I'll be without her guidance.

I'm just not getting the words right when I try to write a piece about the beauty of this season, it's there, I've seen it, but to describe it, to paint a picture with words? Not so much. I'll keep trying.

I have this vision of a bracelet, but putting it together last night, it just wasn't what I had in mind. I'll tear it apart and try again. I also have a necklace in mind, but to find just the right pendant has been an exercise in frustration. I'll keep looking.

I hope she comes home soon!

Granted it's been a long tough winter, so cold that the frost is 3 ft. down in the ground. Our village has asked us to keep our water running-at least a pencil sized stream-to prevent the lines from freezing and bursting. There have been a few signs that some already have. We have a reprieve from the bitter cold for a few days, we may even hit 32 by the weekend, then back to the fun. At least my car is running okay-starting every day.

Other than that, life is generally quiet and uninteresting. That may be a good thing....

Son is back in classes, is happy and overwhelmed with all the reading he has to do this term. He mentioned a book he'd like to read, so just to add to the pressure, I'm sending it to him for his birthday in April(don't worry, he's too busy to read here)!

Work has remained steady, no sudden changes in schedule, or really short weeks. I could use another 5 or 6 hours a week($$$), but I'm doing okay.

I've been toying with the idea of putting in a garden, some veggies and herbs, but I would have to put up some sort of fencing to keep the deer from eating more than their fair share-which would be none! I'll have to give this some more consideration.

So, while I (im)patiently await the return of my muse that's about it for now. And as always....

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Saturday, January 17, 2009

And On A Cold January Day....

Sitting at the kitchen table this morning, jumping around the internet, reading here and there, playing with journal colors and gadgets....I thought well, I should try to add a hit counter to my Journal.

I've had trouble with it before, kept getting messages that I'd failed, having no idea what I was doing, or how to do it differently. I gave up. Was being all philosophical, saying "well, this is for me and how many others visit won't matter to me." Phfft... right. It does matter to me.

So this morning I tried one more time and guess what? Whatever it was I did actually worked this time. Could I do it again? Nope....don't care, it's there now. I will guard it closely, protecting it from deletion to the best of my ability. I hope.....

I'm sitting here hoping that when I muster up the fortitude to get dressed and go outside(we're up to single digits this morning) to start my car, that She will feel like starting this morning.

Day before yesterday, she sat there and moaned at me when I turned the key. Honey, I don't blame you-I wouldn't be out here doing this to you in the cold if I didn't have to go to work.

::sigh:: Back into the house, where my brother was waiting to see if his services and that of the B&D Power Station were needed. Yep, into the Carharts, and with power station and jumper cables in hand, out we went to get her started. Just one little problem...the hood latch release, which is inside the car was frozen. The cable that runs from the release to the hood latch was embedded in ice, not going to move. Options-tow her to the $machanic$ and wait for her to thaw out(I don't think so) or find a torpedo heater to blow the ice off the release cable and pop the hood so that she can be jumped. We located a heater, and off I went in my brother's vehicle to work.

He worked on her yesterday, and she was okay, but has been out there through another cold night. It's almost time for me to head out into the cold and snow(yeah, it's snowing again). We're under a winter storm warning, with 4-8 inches of snow with blowing and drifting predicted. ::sigh:: Okay, whining done for now.

Bro's making a big batch of bean soup today and when I come home from work, I'll be making some cornbread. A yummy way to warm up. That and all the hot chocolate I can drink.

Time to brave the elements. Stay warm, and enjoy your day...

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Friday, January 16, 2009

She came upon the meadow quite by chance. Her eyes searching for the beautiful butterfly she'd been following, that now seemed to have disappeared. She set her gathering basket down and stepped from the edge of the woods, a hesitant 10 yards or so into the open. She turned back, looking at the tree line, then slowly, drinking in all her eyes could behold, turned in circles, once, twice, thrice.

She felt the sun warmed grass between her toes, her skirt settling softly against her bare legs. Puzzled, she looked down her body at the Monetesque floral patterns on her dress, the brightly painted nails and toe rings on her feet, and wondered what magic had transformed her jeans and hiking boots into this faeries' dancing attire.

Just the faintest hint of sound caught her ear. The delicate notes of a songbird-or was that a flute's soft melody? She raised her head and spotted a path amidst the banks of wildflowers swaying quietly on the warm breeeze. Her curoisity beckoned her forward along that green carpet to an opening, a circle, it's border marked with colorful stones, some glittering with bits of mica-or magic.

The music on the breeze invited her to dance, twirling, raising her arms to the sky and sun. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw a movement, yet when she turned her head, she saw only the flowers and stone circle. As her dance continued, more and more flickers of "something" would catch her eye, yet be nothing when she looked. Ah... the faeries had joined her for this summers day celebration.

As the music slowed and faded, she sat down to rest and just enjoy the view. She leaned back against one of the stones to gaze at the sky. Her eyelids grew heavy, she blinked and yawned.....

Wtih a start, she sat up on the sofa, the quilt that kept the winter's chill away while she'd napped fell to the floor. The bright bits of colorful patterns in the patchwork design brought the dress, the dance, the dream to her conscious thoughts. A toe ring twinkled in the afternoon light.

Dream? No, she'd danced with faeries in a magical ring on a glorious summer's day.

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Monday, January 12, 2009

Weather I like it or not!

Nope, not a typo.

We're headed for the deep freeze. Today will be a balmy 20 degrees, with light snow. Then tonight an Alberta Clipper moves in with all the requisite weather conditions-dropping temps, lake effect snows, and winds that take the windchill factor down into the -20's.

I am so ready for the January thaw! If we get one. This winter has been a rough one and I'm ready for spring. How can I get out and go walking when it hurts to breathe, when it takes 15 minutes just to get all my winter gear on?(okay, maybe an exaggeration, but not much) I'd like to explore the trails around the neighborhood(the snowmobiles pack it down enough to walk on), but not this week.

Winter is a beautiful season, snow hanging on the bare tree branches, the hushed sighing of the pines in a light wind. The chickadees, nuthatches and woodpeckers that fly to and from the feeders, with zeal, for the goodies hidden in suet. The squirrels hanging out beneath for any tidbits dropped. Then there's the sky. Well, when it's blue and not that pregnant gray, foretelling another snowfall. There's a special kind of hue that a sunny winter sky takes on that is beyond words. THAT's what I'm looking for!

The necklaces are finished and have been delivered. They're both a big hit. I'd have liked a different shade for some of the beads-more of a smoky gray than black, but my resources were limited with time restrictions. These are the most expensive necklaces I've ever made. I charged enough to recoup my costs for all the beads and pendants, which is just fine with me. I'm not really looking to make this a "business", too much pressure to produce. It's a hobby that I enjoy, selling some is a way to cover my costs. And in the process, spark my creativity. I've even toyed with the idea of creating some pendants of my own-made out of different clays, like fimo. Maybe some painted ones. It's all fun!!!

I've got a long To Do List for this week. Laundry to catch up, work in my bedroom(which still isn't done), some personal studies in a couple of books I found online, and just the general stuff that falls through the cracks when you're busy and not looking.

I'm off to find something warm to wear for the next week, have a great Monday-and....

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

All Hail Zicam!


Nope, not a captcha! An amazing cold remedy!

Yeah, the Lysol didn't work so well. Thursday night I started getting that dry feeling in the back of my throat, so Friday morning I headed to the drug store and picked up some Zicam. It's a homeopathic cold remedy that works really well. It reduces the symptoms and the duration of a cold. Really! My only problem now is irritation from washing my hands so much. Bring on the cocoa butter cream!

I'm so happy that things are getting back to normal. Now that the holidays are behind us, aides are back from their mini-vacations, I know where I'm going to be on what day and what time. I can get to the laundrymat and post office, and the left-over holiday snacks are almost gone! Except for the shrimp, it was on sale so I actually bought an extra bag-I love shrimp cocktail!

I am about to become an international bead artist! Okay, maybe not quite that dramatic. The daughter of a client wants me to make necklaces for her daughter-in-law and her(the dil's) sister. Now for the international part-they live in China! Two of my necklaces will be on the other side of the globe in a couple weeks. That's kind of exciting...okay, really exciting! I've got the designs worked out and will be putting the necklaces together tomorrow night. They'll be versatile office-to-casual with some unique pendants that I found at the craft store. Of course, I found a pendant for myself and can incorporate some of the leftover beads from one of the necklaces, for mine. I'm my own best advertisement....after all.....

I've moved further into current trends. One of my clients gave me a generous holiday gift with specific instructions to spend it on something for myself-so I bought an MP3 player. I've figured out how to load music from my laptop's library and have a code for 50 free downloads from e-music, so I'll be learning how to do that next!

I could talk about the weather, but it hasn't changed in the last couple months. 2 or 3 snow systems a week. ;p I've decided to build a snowman on top of the groundhogs den, that way he won't see his shadow and this will all be over sooner. At least it's starting to stay light past 5 in the afternoon, now.

Well, that's my latest news, and it's time to go read in a trashy historical romance before sleep....

~Thanks For Stopping By~

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Zampe Susempu!

In capcha that translates to:

Happy New Year Everyone!

My wish for you is a year of wonderful possibilities.

I've found some of the word verifications to be quite linguistic! What better way to grab the attention of readers who haven't heard much from me in the past 6 weeks.

It's been a time of trial and tribulations at home and work. More stress than I'm used to, and I wasn't handling it very well. Ways to express it without whining escaped me, and the best solution was to pause in my writing and just "get through it".

No, things haven't magically resolved themselves, but there is such hope with the start of a new year, looking more toward the future than the past or present....

Looking at things from a more practical angle, concentrating on today rather than obsessing on the ever unpredictable future is a resolution I've taken to heart. There are things that I cannot change, things that I can modify and ease to a reasonable extent, things that will be tossed out the door as useless in the grand scheme of my life right now.

Concentrating on my needs(intellectual, emotional, and spiritual) at this time in my life is top priority, keeping that practical theme in mind, living the way I mean for my life to evolve. If I'm going to grow into the person I can picture, I've got to begin as I mean to go on.

The passing of the season of *sometimes* unrealistic expectations-and by that I mean the way I wish things were-getting down to the nitty gritty of getting through the rest of the winter season and the hope of increasing light on a daily basis, are my guiding principles. Living to my best ability in the choices I've made.

My New Year's Eve was a fairly quiet evening at home, watching VH-1's "Top 100 Hard Rock Songs", and sipping on some Hot Damn(Cinnamon Schnapps) and Butter Shots(Butterscotch Schnapps). I say fairly quiet because the stereo speakers can "crank the volume"! Bro has a bad cold, so the Lysol was close at hand. Son was out of town at a celebration, so we shared our New Year's wishes earlier. I snacked on heart-attack popcorn and shrimp cocktail and watched a year that I wasn't pleased with slip quietly into memory! Yeah for that!

There are-of course-other things I want to work on during the next year. I'll be writing more in both my journals, chronicaling my thoughts and the living of my life. When I struggle with those words, I feel a loss of connection with myself.

So, with a brand new year and all its possibilities in front of me.....

~Thanks For Stopping By~