Friday, May 28, 2010

A still more glorious dawn awaits...

Watch. Just watch. It's Carl Sagan. You know you want to.

Ah, this soothes my soul.

Summertime, and the livin' is easy

It isn't officially summertime yet (not for another 24 days), but with the hot, soul-sucking humidity that has once again reared it's sweaty head, it might as well be.

Now that we have come out of hibernation, we can start enjoying the outside of our home. For our anniversary last year, I bought husband a grill, and we are finally about to use it!

I bought him the apron too. Yes, it has Boba Fett on the front.

To work off all of those steaks and hamburgers, we're going to have to do a lot more of this. Of course, we only did this for about a week. Then we bought a rider. Do you know how much grass we have to mow?

Someday soon (soon being a relative term in my universe), I will finally plant these tulips...which are no longer beautiful, vibrant flowers so much as a dry-looking pot of dirt...but they will rise again!

A lovely, sweet young friend purchased a hummingbird feeder for me as a wedding gift, and this is the first summer I have been able to use it! Last night husband and I were standing right behind this when a little hummingbird came up to eat...about a foot from my face! I could not believe how close the little lady came; I could even see her minuscule tongue flicking in and out of her slender beak. I hope to lay in wait more in the weeks to come and try to get an extreme close-up! I inherited the other bird feeder from my mother. She had purchased it to hang outside my dad's room at the nursing home last summer/fall so he could look at the birds (and sneaky, gluttonous squirrels). I am glad to now be able to give it a slightly more cheerful place to live.

And finally, I BEAT MYSELF. I got my garden almost completely planted last night, beating my Memorial Day record from last year by three whole days! The only pending plans are tomatoes and watermelon, which I want to buy as starter seedlings as I think it's too late to start from scratch. This year so far I have planted: "kandy" corn, green beans, peas, spinach, sugar snap peas, carrots, pumpkins, and two kinds of melon. I'm looking forward to a bumper crop. If anything, we grow rocks pretty well in this little plot.

I think next year we need to go bigger!

Husband, contemplating his wacko wife.


To be nauseatingly punny, I did not go Gaga for the most recent episode of "Glee."

In general, I am not a Lady Gaga fan. I don't think she has reached the level of icon that would necessitate an entire episode devoted to her...let's call it music. I think I understand what she tries to accomplish with her outlandish fashion statements, but I am not yet convinced that she isn't just another flavor of the month. I don't much care for Madonna, but I completely understood the episode centered around her; she is an icon. It would be the same if they focused on Michael Jackson hits.

I will admit, however, to enjoying Kurt's "Bad Romance" and the outfits the cast sported. But the major disappointment was the Rachel-Shelby duet of "Poker Face." I appreciated the new, playful take on the song, but I felt it was so completely inappropriate for the touching moment. I was aghast. Particularly after their stunning rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream" in the episode prior.

One shining scene in the episode, however, was Burt Hummel confronting Finn about his apparent homophobia. Mike O'Malley deserves to win a major award for that scene alone. I am not sure I will ever be able to watch it again, it was that intense.

You've only got two more episodes left, "Glee." You'd better bring it.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Movin' on up

Today my parents are buying a new house.Logically, I am thrilled. It's pretty. They need to be on one level. My dad needs a shower he can easily access (without going down a flight of rickety stairs every night). They will be closer to me so I can run over to help them more frequently.

But it's an odd thing to leave your childhood home. Really, I never left. A good chunk of my possessions are still in their home. But now I will really have to move out. Soon. And this new place won't contain any of my old memories: the lane I rode my bicycle up and down; the shed that my elementary friends and I briefly turned into our "secret detective headquarters"; the kitchen where my mom taught me to make black raspberry pies; and the bedroom that housed my fledgling dreams.

It will be their home, not mine.

Daily Eye Candy

Love. These. Shoes.Love. $65.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

Shush. It's my blog. I can count a video as eye candy if I wanna.

"I Dreamed a Dream" = GOOSEBUMPS.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

Aside from the general mess it creates, I enjoy cooking. Specifically: baking. However, I am not great at making food that isn't sweet and fattening. Raw meat disgusts me. I have a hard time not upchucking onto my countertop whilst rubbing down a icy chicken or slicing hunks of beef into manageable shapes. It takes me several attempts before I feel confident making a new side dish or main entree (maybe that's why it took me nine hours to cook a complete Mother's Day meal...). But I do love to bake.

I am of the culinary school of thought that more butter is always better. More sugar makes life sweeter. And more vanilla is more vanderful, dahling.

Oh, and a cute apron always helps...
The Lady's Apron, $32.

Seriously, you should try my baklava. It will send you into diabetic shock, guaranteed.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

My work centers completely around computers, for better or for worse. Without a computer, I cannot edit or typeset my books and journals during my eight-to-five, and I cannot design freelance pieces during my evenings and weekends. They are often infuriating and easy to become lost inside (this from the girl who could get lost while putting on a sweatshirt). But they are necessary to my life. Might as well inject a little style (and just downright cool accessories) into the process.Husband is currently waiting with bated breath for the imminent arrival of his newest toy. We rationalized the toy because I am leaving on a jet plane for a work conference in a few weeks (note to robbers: Husband isn't going anywhere. He will be home. With large, ferocious dogs. And guns.), so I did want something I could easily take with me to the sessions. If we are to join the legions of devoted but dunderheaded Mac devotees, I suppose the least I could do is get a neat laptop skin! Like this one for $19.95!

A dear friend who is leagues cooler than I showed me these Greensforged metal mouse pads recently, and they are just too original! This is their most popular model, L7, and for $40 you also get a free inscription stamped into the pad. This would make a pretty sweet gift, methinks.Finally, I'm in 1980s love with this Cassette Tape Tote Bag. I recently came across my favorite cassette tape of all time, Los del Rio's "Macarena."

I know, right? My [cruel, wenchlike, terrifying] elementary choir teacher made us do the dance on the gym floor. In front of an audience. The pain of this memory is only surpassed by the other, more horrible memory of her making us perform "Achy Breaky Heart" in the same forum. With cowboy hats. She truly was evil incarnate.

So click on the video. And try getting that out of your head today. I dare you.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Friday Fashion: Sweat, baby, sweat

Most of my childhood recollections of exercise center around my mother and Richard Simmons. She sweated to the oldies for awhile, and then I think she came to her senses.

I was an exceptionally unathletic, uncoordinated child, preferring to live in my mind rather than through my body. When I joined the basketball team in the sixth grade (after being coerced by a friend), I didn't have to worry about sweating because I never left the bench long enough to work up anything (including self-esteem).

I continue to be an exceptionally unathletic and uncoordinated adult. However, I recently realized something: strangely, my lack of physical exertion has led to an exponential increase in the size of my ass.

So, I started shredding.

And I have not yet died. I'm only about a third of the way through, but already I've noticed that I can now wear corduroy pants without the constant fear of a fire being ignited between my thighs.

Since my shred takes place in the comfort of my home, I don't have to look gym chic, but I can certainly appreciate the encouraging power of fashion: Put on that adorable running gear and sweat, baby, sweat.I wish I could look this cute in my daily life, let alone just when I work out. I appreciate the dark brown pants to camouflage one's mass and the fun pattern to distract the eye from my flailing. Am Fitness Wear Supplex Lycra 2 Piece Set, $94.99.These Reebok Easy Tone shoes have intrigued me for awhile now. Could I really just walk around and have this pair of black magic shoes transform my hind-end into something significantly less jiggly? I've gotta say, my ultra-lazy, consumerist American attitude is telling me it's worth a try.If you're working up a sweat, you'd better replenish your fluids with something other than delicious, syrupy, sugary, heavenly pop. Try water from your faucet. Did you know that it is practically free? Crazy, huh? Husband and I actually own two Camelbak bottles each, one for work and one for home. We haven't purchased bottled water since. It's such a ridiculously simple change, yet it saves so much (money, plastic, and pulled muscles from dragging 32-bottle packages in from the car). $14.99 (and BPA-free!).If you are one of those crazies that prefers to get your exercise outside in nature, don't forget to protect yourself from the sun. I am not above tackling you to the ground in order to slather sunscreen on your exposed skin. But, don't forget to protect your eyes with something like these Raspberry Leather-Trimmed Metal Aviator Sunglasses, $250. It's possible to be chic and safe!Finally, you're going to need something to store all of this in. Try the Baroque Allrounder Duffle, $29.99 ($19.99 for the small). I am in love with this bag's pattern and shape. I totally bet I could fit an entire sheet cake in this thing...

I feel better...

...because this man is alive at the same time that I am.

Watch. Enjoy.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

I am hopeful that I will have ground tilled for a garden by the end of this weekend. I will most likely be disappointed by the time Monday rolls around. But let's give ourselves the benefit of the doubt, shall we? If I ever do get a garden in the ground, this watering can might be a serious contender for my rows of corn and beans and tomatoes! It's pretty darn sweet, and surprisingly sleek.Dual-Action Watering Can, $78.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

Today it is cold and rainy and dark and BRRRR. The only thing in the world that I want to do is take a sick day (although I'm not about a mental health day?) and curl up in bed with a nice warm Husband. And maybe this Mohair Throw in Hibiscus, $250...

Monday, May 10, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

I have had a headache all afternoon. My purse is currently devoid of pain medication, but instead of trekking downstairs to purchase some Advil from the kiosk, I would rather sit here and complain about it. Mostly, I want to take a nap. I guess if I had to pick a pillow to nap on, I'd go with the Adobe InDesign icon pillow (the pink one).

Because it's awesome, that's why.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

Today I was in my kitchen cooking for nine hours. I made a ham (my first baked in the oven), mashed potatoes (real - who do you think I am?), asparagus, corn, yeast dinner rolls from scratch, and a pecan bundt cake for dessert.

I am completely beat.

It was completely worth it.

Happy Mother's Day to the two women I strive to live up to. Love.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

If I did it all over again, if I had a re-do of my wedding day, I think I might eschew the big, beautiful wedding dress with the long, full skirt. Instead, I would wear this:So simple and sweet and lovely! Precious Dress in Pearl, $54.99.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


I've discovered a Web site that is exceptionally dangerous for my productivity levels. It appeals to my favorite genre of literature: Feature Stories. I am in love with extended journalism, articles that are long and lean but peppered with insight. These articles take the reader on a journey, sometimes torturous, sometimes hilarious, always inspiring contemplation. They are pieces that particularly inspire envy for me; how I wish I could write such articles.

The site, which is extremely simple, almost utilitarian, is Every day several new feature stories are posted. Some do not interest me, but the majority tempt me away from my own personal endeavors. Each article title is followed by a brief description, and they do not disappoint.

If you have some time and a few brain cells left, take a look. You will certainly find something you will enjoy.

Daily Eye Candy

I so love green, vibrant, living plants. You will rarely, if ever, see fake flowers or foliage used as decor in my home (I do not count the faux flowers I keep in my craft room to incorporate into cards or gifts!). I hope to have our garden in the ground this month. I got my parents' garden in on Memorial Day last year, which was really pretty late, so I hope I do not beat my own record. Next weekend is looking good for this project. (However, my procrastination has worked in my favor this year as it continues to frost every so often! Oh, Indiana, you are a devilish wench...)

We are very lucky to have a large backyard in which to grow lots of yummy fruits and vegetables, but if you are not quite so lucky, perhaps you could use this interesting (and cute) selection of "Garden in a Bag."They offer all the popular kitchen herbs that can grow right on your countertop! Plus, they are only $9.00 per bag and will grow year round!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

I love Every single day they post at least one item that interests me, and their content is always of great quality. So it shouldn't be surprising that their online store contains equally witty, interesting items. If I wear a shirt with a witty saying, maybe people who see me will think that I am witty! Genius!

This one is my favorite! $17.97. Check it out; there's definitely something for every kind of geek out there!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Daily Eye Candy

I've been wearing glasses a long, long time. Thanks to a family history riddled with poor vision, I became a "four eyes" early. If we lived when cavemen roamed, you would have wanted to stick close to me. I would become easy nearsighted prey, allowing you to scurry away to hide in the underbrush as I squinted at the beast devouring my body.

My parents always allowed me to choose my glasses frames myself. This was undoubtedly a mistake, my legacy of school pictures revealing a Dork with a capital D. The frames were just so large - apparently my upper cheeks and lower forehead were also in need of visual assistance.

It wasn't until the last few years that I finally began choosing glasses that didn't make me look secretary Janine Melnitz from "Ghostbusters."


I still have the worst time choosing glasses (as evidenced by an elderly man sitting in the optometrist's office who looked at my exasperated husband as I switched back and forth between my top two choices and said, "Just buy her both!").

But, finally, I chose:These. Except brown. Believe me, brown was a better choice in this instance. They have tiny crystals on the sides, which excite me with their sparkle and are sure to fall out within the first three months.

Luckily, I won't be able to see it.