.....and other random stuff......

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Today is My Lucky Day

I have to get up and be dressed early today.
I have to be presentable to answer the door when the Publisher’s Clearinghouse people come to give me my giant $1,000,000.00 check!

Just thought I’d start out your day with a laugh! You're welcome!

Monday, February 27, 2012

More Word Verifications

Let’s try some more…

Mombel: A type of dance that combines mambo and belly dancing. (Try and get THAT mental image out of your head!  You’re welcome!)

dinglyso: I have a great definition for this one but I’m afraid good taste (and morals clauses) prevent me from posting it! LOL)

Cremo: An utterly disgusting, non-fat, non-dairy cream substitute for coffee.

Tians: Natives of the planet Ti.

Comish: Adjective used to define an unmarried female (of a ‘certain’ age) who isn’t exactly beautiful but isn’t ugly. “You could describe Miss Emily as com-ish.”

What  meanings would you give to them?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Mickey? You in There?

Son1 loved Mickey Mouse.
I mean he LOVED Mickey Mouse!
He had a Mickey doll, Mickey sheets, Mickey clothes, Mickey slippers. He watched Mickey videos ad nauseum!
So when he was about four years old we went to Disneyworld.

He was pumped. (And we weren’t above revving him up for the experience either. LOL)
All he wanted to do was meet Mickey. He had no interest in any other part of the park. He just wanted to go to Mickey’s house.

When we got there, Mickey was nowhere to be found.
We walked through the house and on to Minnie’s house.
No Mickey.

He was crestfallen!
He darted around looking everywhere.

Finally as we were leaving, he spied Mickey’s little ‘playhouse’ in the yard.
His eyes lit up as he ran to it. For sure this is where Mickey would be!
He leaned his head into the window and called, “Mickey? You in there?”

Much to the amusement of all the people touring Mickey’s house.

Another ‘Mommy moment’ forever etched in my memory.
He finally got to meet his ‘hero’!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Close Up

Close up of the spines of the up-cycled journals I’ve been making. The pile is growing!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

You Know You’re Not In Kansas Anymore When….

I realize I no longer live in an urbane metropolitan area, but still……I expect a modicum of intelligence.
Apparently this is too much to ask.

These are actual signs I’ve seen since moving here.  (I never seem to have my camera with me when I need it!)

This was a handwritten sign at the side of a driveway, advertising his:
‘3 Peace Truck Top 4 Sale’.
I actually went around the block to look at it again because I couldn’t believe my eyes!

A thriving business in a small town in the middle of the state:
‘Coin Wash and Seafood CafĂ©’ (Frightening!)

Someone has a sense of humor:
‘Master Bait and Tackle’

This one boggles my mind:
‘Plastic Surgery and Pregnancy Center’
I just don’t see the connection! LOL

Every car ride is a new adventure!
So tell me, what do you do in your town for entertainment? LOL

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Along Sarasota's water front is a huge aluminum statue inspired by one of WWII's most iconic images. 
Titled "Unconditional Surrender", the sailor and nurse from the Alfred Eisenstaedt photograph are instantly recognizable.

 Husband’s first thought upon seeing this dramatic statue?
“I wonder what she is wearing under her uniform.”


THAT’S the first thing you think of when you see this?

Apparently he’s not the only one.

(disclaimer: that is NOT my husband, but obviously someone else is married to a twelve year old too!)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

More Journals

I thought maybe I could use these long envelopes as covers for another up-cycled journal. Somewhere to tuck little bits and pieces.
I’m not as pleased with these :(

Friday, February 17, 2012

I’ve Not Been Myself Lately

Playing around in Photoshop and this struck me as EXACTLY how I’ve been feeling lately. I call it “Out of Sorts”. (I find it funny and sad at the same time. Not to worry though, I'm sure it's just the winter blahs and I’ll snap out of it soon! LOL)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I Didn’t Like High School

I didn’t like High School. Not at all.

Don’t get me wrong, I love to learn stuff. And I’m a wealth of useless information but…..

If it’s not something that interests me, or if the teacher is a windbag that drones on and on, or it’s a boring topic and no amount of magic tricks will make it more interesting, you get the idea.

I just didn’t like High School.

So I didn’t go.

I would go to homeroom, so as to not be marked absent and trigger a call to my parents, and then I would go with my boyfriend to his college. Sometimes I’d audit classes; sometimes I’d use the library to do my homework.

Yes, I said homework. 
I’d go to homeroom, then visit each of my teachers, hand in my homework, get that day’s work and be on my way. The teachers all knew I wasn’t there but I was doing the work and keeping up my grades, so what did they care?

I was on a work/study program. I would attend school (ahem) for half the day and then work for the rest of the day. I was working full time by my senior year.

I worked as a cashier at the neighborhood grocery store. My mother would shop almost daily. I think it was to check up on me, but I didn’t mind.

One afternoon I was sitting in front of the store on my break as she pulled up in her car.  From across the street you couldn’t hear what she was saying but you could clearly ‘read’ the words on her lips, 
‘I’m going to kill you!’

The school had finally caught on and called her. Nine weeks later!  Yep, I had skipped school for 45 days straight!

The school threatened not to graduate me, on a technicality. 
Although my grades were good and they couldn’t use them as the reason, they could use the fact that I hadn’t fulfilled my physical education requirement.

The principal called my mother to the school where he proceeded to lecture and denigrate both of us. 
Apparently the fact that she didn’t know I was skipping school was unconscionable, but that the school didn’t know was okay!

After his little tirade was over, my mother very quietly said to him, “YOU didn’t notice she was missing for NINE WEEKS! A fact that the school board and the media would be VERY interested in, I’m sure. Her grades are good so you can’t say she flunking. And I’m sure if we discuss the problem with the physical education teacher we can come to a mutual agreement. If she doesn’t graduate, that means you have her for another year!”

Talk about threats! LOL

All I had to do was write a paper for the Phys Ed teacher.
I graduated with my class!

(When the boys were growing up she reveled in the telling of my little escapades! I think she hoped she was giving them ideas!)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I Can't Stand Valentine’s Day

Call me Scrooge, call me the Grinch.
(Is there a fictional character that hates Valentine’s Day?)
Or does this cheese stand alone?
I take great offense at a holiday that dictates when and how I should show my affection to the ones I love!
Is that wrong of me?

Monday, February 13, 2012

Kicking and Screaming

Son2 is dragging me kicking and screaming into the 21st century.
He established a Facebook page for me!
I’ve fought this since Facebook began.
I view it as just another ‘black hole’ that sucks you in, needs constant attention, PLUS people who have been long gone from your life reappear.
Don’t get me wrong; to reconnect with lost friends is an intriguing thought. 
There are people I got away from the first time and I don’t relish having to escape them again. LOL
But Son2 has been hired by the firm he interned with (and he hasn’t even graduated yet! {Unabashed mama boasting!}) 
It’s a marketing firm, and he insists that for promotional purposes I NEED a Facebook presence.
We shall see. LOL

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Husband Baked! YAY

Husband baked this weekend! (It was too windy to go fishing so he decided to make his world famous French baguettes.)

I wish you could smell the house! Nothing says ‘home’ like the smell of baking bread!

French Baguettes

5-51/2 cups unbleached bread flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 package quick-rise yeast
2 cups lukewarm water
Boiling water, as needed
Cornmeal for pans
1 egg white beaten with pinch of salt for glaze

In the bowl of electric stand mixer, combine 4 cups of the flour, the salt, yeast and water. Stir until blended. Knead with the dough hook until the dough is elastic and pulls cleanly from the bowl sides, about 10 minutes, adding flour as needed. The dough will be very soft. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 1 minute. Form into a ball and place in a clean bowl. Dust lightly with flour, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled, 45-60 minutes.

Scrape the dough out onto a well-floured work surface. Press flat, knead for a few seconds and return to the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, 20-30 minutes.

Line each of 2 double baguette pans (4 molds total), each 18 inches long and 6 inches wide, with a kitchen towel and sprinkle with flour, lightly rubbing it into the fabric. Turn out the dough onto a floured work surface, press flat. Cut into 4 equal pieces, knead into balls and let rest for 5 minutes. Press each ball flat and then fold into thirds. Roll each into a rope 16 inches long with tapered ends. Place in the towel-lined pans. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise until doubled, about 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450°

Place a shallow pan of boiling water on the floor of the pre-heated oven. Pull the pans out from under the towels. Grease the pans and sprinkle with cornmeal. One at a time, flip the loaves into the pans, underside up. Brush with glaze. Using a sharp knife, make three ¼ inch long deep diagonal slashes on each loaf. Bake until brown and crusty, 20-25 minutes. 
Transfer the loaves to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature (if you can wait that long, LOL!)

Makes four ½ lb. baguettes

Recipe from: Williams-Sonoma Kitchen Library BREADS

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Still More


items used: found papers, magazine pages (some painted) packing papers, re-cycled cardboard boxes, old buttons, hair elastic as closure, assorted fibers on binding.
for the covers I used packaging paper that came in something Husband ordered online. I layered it, added bits of leftover fabric and free motion stitched to hold it together and then sealed it with Collage Podge.
for some of the covers I just painted and stamped on the packaging paper before sealing it.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Now THIS is a Useful Site! LOL

Find out your fairy names with The Fairy Name Generator!My fairy name is Ember Rainbowshimmer
She brings good fortune.
She lives where fireflies mate and breed.
She is only seen when the first flowers begin to blossom.
She wears dresses that glow with fiery colours and has multicoloured wings like a butterfly.
Find out your fairy names with The Fairy Name Generator!

(Thank you Jo! This made my day! LOL)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

What I’ve Been Up to Lately

My studio was getting a bit messy. So I decided to purge.

I have a lot of ‘found’ papers, out of date atlases, old sheet music, and leftover colored paper from long ago. 
Plus, for some reason, I’ve been saving old cardboard boxes.

At one time I was going to collage all this material into something. But as it often does, life has taken me on a different path.

So I’ve been making up-cycled journals.

I really like making the fiber bindings! They are just so ‘touchable’! 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Farts Are Funny

And if you don’t think so you’ve never had dinner at our house! LOL

I tried, I really did!
I tried to raise the boys with at least a modicum of respectability and manners. But it’s hard when you’re surrounded by all that testosterone!

And Husband was no help. He turned into a twelve year old as soon as dinnertime approached.

I would try and teach them the proper way to set the table, the correct utensils to use and when. To put the napkin on their laps.

They would always say, “Why do we need to know these things?”

And I would reply, “Because someday you might be invited to a State Dinner at the White House and you need to know how to act!”

It didn’t make much of an impression. They never were convinced that would ever really happen. (Someday though, I’m POSITIVE I’m going to be vindicated on this! LOL)

When they got older I tried appealing to their vanity and telling them, “Girls don’t like to hear burps and farts at the table, and someday you’re going to be invited to your girlfriend’s house for dinner and you’ll need to know how to act!”

I think they finally got it, but I have to say I really miss those dinners!
We ate and shared the day’s events and laughed until tears ran down our cheeks (and sometimes milk squirted out of noses, I’m ashamed to say)!

And to tell you the truth,  (just between you and me and the lamppost) farts ARE funny!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Story Starters

When the boys were in elementary school, getting them to write was like pulling teeth.

They were required to keep a journal (no spelling or grammar counted) because the school thought this was a good way to encourage creative writing.

They mostly drew pictures of ninja warriors and Mutant Ninja Turtles. (What can I say? They were creatures of their times! LOL)

Then the teachers thought writing and illustrating their own original book and reading them to us on Parent’s Night would be a good incentive.

I asked them why it was so hard to write and they told me it was hard to think of anything to write about.
So I started them off with the first line of a story and told them to finish it. They were off and running!

That’s how I came to invent ‘Story Starters’.

I would write the beginning of a sentence on a piece of paper,
"Once upon a time…"
"It was a dark and stormy night…."
"A long, long, long time ago…."
"In a place far far away…"
"Call me Ishmael….."
"It was the best of times; it was the worst of times….."

(Adding the lines the little ones needed to write on) copy them, stack them up, add padding glue and viola!
 I gave them to the teachers to hand out to the kids as needed.

The teachers were happy, the kids were happy, I was happy. A win win situation all around.

(It never was the ‘get rich’ scheme I thought it might be, because apparently, it’s not an original idea! LOL)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Look What I Learned to Do!!!!!

My first animation! (annoying, isn't it?) LOL 
I'll have to work on this animation thing some more.
Here is the tutorial I used.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Iced Coffee

My mother LOVED her coffee! She especially loved iced coffee. 
In the summer months she drank almost nothing but.
The trouble was most restaurants didn’t serve iced coffee. 
‘Back in the day’ it wasn’t like it is now. No Starbucks on every corner, no gourmet coffees, just a plain ‘ole cuppa Joe.
She didn’t understand why a restaurant WOULDN’T serve iced coffee. (Plus she was a rather determined person and wanted what she wanted! LOL)
One evening, while eating out, she decided the time had come for her to set the restaurant industry straight about the whole iced coffee conundrum.
The waitress came to the table and my mother asked for iced coffee.
The waitress said they didn’t serve iced coffee.
My mother said, “Do you have ice?”
“Yes” replied the waitress.
“Do you have coffee?” asked my mother.
“Yes” said the waitress.
My mother said, “Bring me a glass of ice and a cup of coffee, please."
When the waitress returned with the requested items my mother said to her, “Watch.”
She proceeded to pour the cup of coffee into the glass of ice.
My mother looked at the waitress triumphantly and said “There! See how easy it is? Now you serve iced coffee!”

She was a woman ahead of her time!

(I wonder if my mother was Starbucks inspiration? LOL)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Norma Desmond

I was surprised that not everyone ‘got’ my reference to Norma Desmond from the movie Sunset Blvd.
I thought it was iconic, but I guess not.
I’m such a fan of classic movies I just assume everyone is! LOL

So here is the clip from the movie. If you ever get a chance to watch it, I highly recommend it. It’s a good movie, in a creepy kind of way.

(You really need to know the whole plot line to get how disturbing this is!)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Sketchbook Challenge—February

The Sketchbook Challenge theme for February is ‘close up’.
The first thing that popped into my head was Norma Desmond! LOL
So here is my version……
“I’m ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille.”

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


A whole month with no doctor’s appointments!


No doctors,
no dentists,
no poking,
no prodding,
no tests,
no scans,
no blood work,
no follow ups!

Say it with me…YAY!

I know I’m probably jinxing myself by posting this but I got great joy out of turning the page of the calendar this morning and seeing a blissfully empty month spreading out in front of me!