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

Monday, December 24, 2018

MERRY CHRISTMAS!


Wishing you a very Merry Christmas! See you in the New Year.

Friday, December 21, 2018

He Had It Coming


In fifth grade our class put on a show for the school and our parents. I don’t remember what the theme was exactly. It must have been something historical because my BFF and I were dressed as 1920’s flappers. Her mother was a seamstress and she made our costumes. Sheath dresses entirely covered in beaded fringe. I LOVED that dress! Every little movement made the beads shimmer and dance!

Like I said, I don’t remember what the show was about….what I do remember was, as we were onstage doing the Charleston, Floyd Daisy stood up in the middle of the audience and yelled at the top of his lungs, “That’s MY chick!”

He had made it quite apparent over time that he liked me. The feeling was NOT mutual but I managed to ignore him most of the time. Until the night of the show.

I was mortified when he jumped up and declared his ‘ownership’ of me! And MAD! How DARE he! I still remember how angry I was, not so much that he declared his feelings to the world but the WAY he said ‘HIS chick’ really ticked me off!

After the show I went looking for him, and when I found him I let him have it! With both barrels, as they say. I chewed him up one side and down the other and then spit him out right in front of God and everyone.

Looking back, I guess I could have been kinder and taken him off to the side and yelled at him privately………then again, he made his statement publicly…….nope, I stand by my actions……he had it coming!  

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Sometimes I worry About My Subconscious Mind.....

I sat down with a new sketchbook (not that I need a new sketchbook, or have finished the ones I already have.....but, whatever.....)

This is what popped onto the first page.

It's not what I was thinking about drawing, at least I don't THINK it was what I was thinking about..... lol.

I wonder if I should I be worried......

Friday, December 14, 2018

A Fictional Story


He sat at his workbench. It was in the corner of his mother’s overcrowded basement. Lit by a single light bulb hanging from its cord. He liked his ‘studio’ as he referred to it. It suited him. Tucked away as it was, out of sight and secretive. He was secretive.
He had always been a shy child and he grew into a shy adult. Not that he was antisocial, just slightly ill at ease around groups of people. He enjoyed his time alone. He could think. He liked thinking.
Sometimes he thought grand thoughts, sometimes just ordinary thoughts.
And he liked to tinker. He was always taking his mother’s appliances and tinkering with them. Improving them he said. Breaking them his mother said.
She didn’t really mind though, sometimes he did come up with an improvement to the original.

Sometimes he worked on things he found in the trash. Other people’s trash.
Right now he was working on an old fashioned TV remote he found in Mr. Quentin’s trash. After Mr. Quentin died his children came and put all the contents of his house at the curb for the garbage men.

He didn’t know why, but for some reason the remote seemed to jump into his hands. It must have been the shiny gold buttons and the way it ‘clacked’ when you pushed them but Nelson was enthralled the moment he saw it.

He immediately took it back to the house and reverently placed it on his workbench.
He had no idea what you could do with an old 1960’s broken TV remote (without the TV) but that didn’t dull his enthusiasm.

He tinkered with it for months. A new wire here, a little solder there.  

The day he took it with him to work was just an ordinary day.

As he sat at the bus stop he found himself getting annoyed, once again, with the young woman sitting next to him talking on her cell phone. It’s not that he begrudged her having a conversation. But he always felt uncomfortable, like he was eavesdropping on people’s private lives when they talked in such public places.

He sat on the bench with his hands in his pockets trying to be as invisible as possible. He didn’t do it consciously. It was just a reflex. His finger felt for the button on the remote and ‘CLACK’ he pushed it.

“Hello? Hello?” the young woman looked at her phone and cursed. “Damn reception!” she said and put her phone in her purse.
It didn’t occur to Nelson there was any connection……until it happened again.

He passed all the same places. Saw all the same people and things. 

He saw Mr. & Mrs. Goldman arguing at the bus stop like always. He saw the man walking his dog and scolding him, like always. He saw the group of bullies taunting the little boy that walked to school alone every day, like always.

He didn’t know why he did it, didn’t know what he could have been thinking. He grabbed the remote, pointed it at the group of bullies and CLACK, pushed the button.

In that split second the little boy spun around to face his tormentors and the group of bullies fell to the ground en masse. They sat there for a moment stunned. They couldn’t figure out how one small boy had been able to knock them all down at once.

As they scrambled to their feet they noticed the little boy didn’t look quite so little anymore. They never noticed the look of surprise on the boy’s face. They didn’t notice the young man pointing an old TV remote at them.

Neither did any of the others. Not the man who used to harass his dog. Not the Goldman’s.

Now when Nelson rides to work in the mornings the man walking his dog tosses a ball or playfully wrestles with his canine companion. The Goldman’s sit together amicably laughing and chatting while waiting for their bus to come.

Sometimes he walks around the neighborhood and just because he finds it amusing he’ll CLACK the remote at a house where he sees people inside watching TV and changes the channel. Just for fun you understand.
Because being a superhero and using your powers for good can sometime be rather monotonous.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Husband Has a Talent......

.....for building haunted furniture.
This is the new banquette in the breakfast nook in the kitchen. You can never have too much storage!

Friday, December 7, 2018

My Mind is a Little Bit Warped


We have a phone that ‘announces’ who is calling. And if it’s not someone I know or a call that I’m expecting I just ignore it.

Most of the time it’s just BS and scammers. But they’re getting more creative with their numbers, and the announcements are quite intriguing.

“Not assigned’, “unlisted’, “out of area”…..who ARE these people? Sometimes it even says the IRS! (That one is quite funny actually; it’s a scam where they threaten to come arrest you if you don’t send them money. If I answer that one I tell them “Come right ahead! I’ll be waiting at the door with my loaded AK47!” I don’t know why but that’s when they hang up! LOL)

But I digress……

Today as I was trying to write something pithy for the blog the phone was unusually busy. And it was a lot of “out of areas”. As I was struggling to write something funny it kept coming out as a rant. Basically I was just pissing and moaning about the state of the world and how it’s going to hell in a hand basket. Not funny, not interesting, not the slightest bit entertaining.

And then I began to think, ‘out of area’, that could mean anything….way out of area…..like maybe it was my mother calling to tell me to quit your bitchin’! Now THAT would really be ‘out of area’!
It made me laugh and snapped me out of my mood….so maybe, in a way, it WAS my mother!

Thanks, mom!

Monday, December 3, 2018

Re-Run

A good story is worth repeating.........

Ghosts of Christmas Past

I learned a lot about interpersonal relationships from watching my parents interact with their parents. 
It was a far better learning experience than any college psychology course I ever took.

My father called his parents Mother and Dad. It was all very formal and polite. As were all dealings with his side of the family.

On the other hand, my father called my mother’s parents Mom and Pop. Things were much less formal in my mother’s parent’s home. They were always laughing and joking and had a twinkle in their eyes. (And Grandma always looked suspiciously like Mrs. Santa Claus to me!)

But I digress….

My father was always respectful to his parents but I got the feeling he didn’t exactly believe in the things they taught him. (They were quite the bigots, among other things.)
I only saw my father show anger towards either of them once.

It was Christmas Eve. I was five or six. I was excited beyond measure.
It was CHRISTMAS EVE and MY GRANDPARENTS WERE VISITING.
I was having a really hard time getting to sleep. I kept coming downstairs to tell my parents I couldn’t sleep (probably every five minutes.) My mother would gently scoot me back into bed and try and calm me down.
On my last trip downstairs to say I couldn’t sleep my Grandmother lost her patience and yelled at me, “Santa is NEVER going to come! You’re a BAD little girl! You’ll never get ANY presents EVER! Now go to sleep! (She never pulled any punches!)
I was so stunned I actually backed up against the wall. I couldn’t have been more surprised if she had slapped me!

My father was across the living room when she yelled at me and in the blink of an eye he was at his mother’s side.
He grabbed her upper arm, spun her around and with daggers in his eyes said; ‘Don’t EVER talk that way to MY children. EVER AGAIN!

I was agog.
I had never seen my father do anything remotely like that before.
Have I mentioned that my father was the MOST non-violent person I have ever known in my life? He didn’t even believe in spanking us, so for him to actually grab Grandma in anger was beyond anything I’d ever known him to do.

In later years I think I came to know why he was the way he was.

Growing up all I ever knew of my father’s parents was what a milquetoast Grandpa was. How Grandma emasculated him. How she was always picking on him and belittling him in front of people.
Then my father told me a story that happened when he was sixteen. His parents were having a fight and Grandpa hit Grandma.

Yup, Grandpa used to beat Grandma up on a regular basis. My father decided he’d had enough. So on this particular occasion, as Grandpa raised his hand to hit Grandma my father stepped between the two of them and said, “Don’t you hit my mother!”
To his great surprise and amazement it was his MOTHER who turned on him and said, “Don’t you ever come between your father and me again!”
He was shocked that he was being berated for trying to help her. And he said he never tried to intervene again.

I think that was a very formative point in his life.

And I could understand why he was such a pacifist.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

And Then We.....

After we had stuffed ourselves with turkey and all the fixins' and it was just the four of us I announced we were going to set up and decorate the Christmas tree! You should have seen the look of horror on their faces! LOL Son1 asked, "The BIG tree?" Eyes wide as saucers (and not in the good, childlike, Santa's coming way.....)
I pulled out a plastic bag, handed it to him and said, "Here, you have the honor!"
The star, ball and tinsel were even still on it from last year! 
We are now officially decorated for Christmas! 

Monday, November 26, 2018

And a Good Time Was Had by All

It was a little nerve wracking. First time using the new oven....with the automatic probe.....which claimed to cook your turkey to the perfect temperature and then turn off the oven.

So.....bright and early we got up, stuffed the bird, inserted the probe and put him in the oven. The instructions said to set the desired temperature of the probe and then the temp for the oven.
 So far, so good. 

Then we went about our business but kept an eye on the oven. The probe temperature went up quite quickly. Too quickly we thought....and we began to worry. At that rate the turkey would be done by ten AM! Oh no! We told everyone dinner would be served at 1:30-ish.......

But in the end it all worked out and dinner was on the table at the prescribed time. Whew.....
And it was the BEST turkey ever! 
(Just for clarification.....we say that every year! LOL)

Friday, November 23, 2018

.....And to Answer Your Question About Where I put The Art Supplies


I don't know where anything is......but, I managed to get it all in. Husband says he's going to make me pull-outs for here too. That will make it easier to access 'stuff'. And I might just take over one more cabinet....you know.....for future supplies I might, possibly acquire......
This is the end cabinet on the outside of the island. The end that I plan to use for 'doing my thing'!
I like that it's all out of sight....and best of all, it won't get dusty! 

Thursday, November 22, 2018

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

To all those who celebrate this day of overeating......HAPPY THANKSGIVING! 

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

The Greatly Anticipated........

......(semi-finished) reveal!
Just in time for Turkey Day.......it's functional. Not that I know how any of the new appliances work....lol. (There is a strong possibility we might end up eating out on Thanksgiving because I burned the turkey in my new oven that I don't really understand.....yet.)
But we are tickled pink at how it looks! There is still a bunch to be done....trim, shutters, banquette in the eating area, new table and chairs, pull-outs for the cabinets, retro-fitting those two drawers where the island outlets are, etc......but that will come in time (and with more $$$.)






Thursday, November 15, 2018

Into Each Life A Little Rain Must Fall

....and then there's total failure.......

So, things here in remodel land have been going along swimmingly....until they weren't! LOL

Husband was plowing through tasks left and right. We got the oven/microwave into it's cabinet....I helped (it was HEAVY!) It went quite well........

Then it was time for the tile to go up on the wall behind the cooktop. No big deal. Husband is a pro at tiling by now......except maybe not......

We chose marble tile, a natural material. We knew that it being a natural material there would be differences in the coloring/striations. We KNEW that in such situations you are supposed to open ALL the boxes and mix them up so you don't see one 'block' of tiles looking too much alike and then blam another 'block' that look different. Except in our excitement to get it up on the wall and see it we.....forgot that step.......

Sooooooo halfway up the wall we stood back to admire our handiwork, and open the next box of tiles aaaaaand.......EEEEEEEEKKKKKK.......they were all mostly WHITE! Up to that point what was already on the wall was.....all grey!

OH CRAP! Now what??

Well, we could pry off some of them here and there and fill in with the 'white' ones.....maybe???

Long story short...... Husband pried off ALL of the tiles he had already installed (except the ones he cut to fit around the outlets) scraped the thinset from the wall and off the backs of EVERY SINGLE TILE.......he was NOT a happy camper.
The next morning we laid out two shipping blankets, opened ALL the boxes of tiles and laid them out in a cohesive design that we liked.
I think it's going very well.......second time's the charm!

Lesson learned: Open ALL the boxes BEFORE you start your tile installation!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Here's How You Do It

How do you and your wimpy wife lift a 250 lb. oven/microwave up and into the cabinet without causing all sorts of damage/pain and possible divorce proceedings?????
You 'bunk' it, that's how!!!!!

Sometimes Husband's ideas are a bit.......questionable.....but in this case he was downright BRILLIANT!

I had never heard of this procedure but it really was pretty easy, if not time consuming.

First you measure how high you need the bunk to be, multiple times just to make sure your math is correct.......then you cut as many 2x4's as it takes to reach that height making sure they are long enough to support the oven. Then you get wifey to help by stacking the boards underneath the oven as you hold it up.

So.....picture Husband lifting one side, as I slip a 2x4 under that side. Then we switch to the other side and repeat. When we've gotten two 2x4's stacked Husband screws them together for stability. Then we repeat the process for each side....lift, slide, screw....lift, slide, screw.....alternating the direction of the boards for steadiness until it's just the right height....except it's not because....well, let's just say SOMEONE mentioned that the weight of the oven was compressing the 2x4's and the math might not be exact.....not naming names here....
So......we have to 'unstack' the last four rows to get it down to where SOMEONE had slipped in  unauthorized pieces of wood......un-screw, un-slide, lower......un-screw, un-slide, lower.....and then reverse the process AGAIN using the CORRECT pieces of wood...........lift, slide, screw....lift, slide, screw!

We finally got it to the right height and were able to slide the oven into the waiting cabinet. It was perfect! It all lined up and worked just like Husband said it would.

And I apologized for doubting his math.........

We are READY FOR TURKEY DAY! YAY!



Thursday, November 8, 2018

Unexpected.....Benefits?

We had to buy new pots and pans.....for the induction cooktop. I thought at least some of my old set would work....ummmm....apparently not.....lol.
I didn't want to spend a fortune. These looked like a good set. Calphalon Tri-Ply Stainless Steel 13-Piece Cookware Set....I had a coupon so I got 20% off! They have a nice weight to them and the handles are very sturdy. I haven't used them yet but my old ones were stainless too so I don't anticipate much difference other than getting used to induction cooking.
Right now they're on the table we're using in the living room.....sort of like showing off wedding presents....I like to sit and admire them! LOL 


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

I Am Over the Moon!

The countertops were delivered/installed last Thursday.......
The owner came to supervise. 
He said in eighteen years in business this was the largest slab they have ever installed! It's ten feet long by four feet wide and weighs over 800 lbs!  
It's the perfect place for a buffet for a large gathering. Too bad I'm anti-social! LOL 

This is where the cooktop will be. I might even enjoy cooking again now that I have some space to spread out!    

Now I have to decide on and order bar stools....... 

The sink is so big you could do laps in it! LOL
....and the plumbing is a work of art! 
This is becoming my favorite kitchen EVER!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Funny Monday

(these next few Funny Mondays were pre-scheduled....and I thought they were worth sharing...)

Thursday, November 1, 2018

……The Rest of the Story


Here are the last of the Inktober renderings, #21 through #31.
#21 drain (self explanatory)

#22 expensive...a diamond encrusted fountain pen.....

#23 muddy....the squiggles are supposed to be the mud! don't judge! lol

#24 chop......made me think of Lambchop, the puppet from my youth...and then to 'fix' my drawing I added the 'chopper' accoutrement.....

#25 prickly...couldn't decide between a prickly pear or a hedgehog so I did both.

#26 stretch....uninspired, but done is better than perfect.

#27 thunder......

#28 gift....another uninspired one but I stand by done being better than perfect! 

#29 double.....double stuf oreos.

#30 jolt.....Frankenstein's younger brother, Jesse....because of the bolts....oh, never mind....

#31 slice.....FINISHED!!! 
YAY I did it! 

I think I enjoyed this challenge…..for the most part, lol. I didn’t realize how much I missed the tactile feeling of drawing ‘for real’ as it were. I enjoyed the scritchy scratch of the pen on the paper, making mistakes you can’t erase so you have to figure a way to incorporate them into the finished piece (unless you cheat and finish them in Photoshop…..but that has its issues/limitations too….) The hardest part was trying to figure out what to draw, even with the prompts. Originality isn’t always an option.

Having said all that….. will I do it again next year? Probably, depending on my mood.



Tuesday, October 30, 2018

OMG…I’m Even Boring Myself!


I don’t know about you guys, but for some time now I find my posts are getting…..shall we say, less than scintillating. I thought by using the cartoons as ‘fillers’ so to speak, it would give me time to come up with more interesting posts for the other days. Apparently, I was wrong……insert sad face here……

I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Should I just call it a day? Retire the blog? It has been over eight years…..that’s about seven and a half years longer than I expected! LOL

But I don’t think I want to end it altogether. I like having a place to come to and connect with you! And yes, let’s face it, I like ‘showing off’ the things I make and write!

So I’m thinking I’m going to end the cartoons and go back to why I started this space to begin with. Sharing my art and telling stories.

BUT…..I’m going to give myself a break and not post every day. I’m still working on which days or even if it will be set days. And I think I will also do some ‘re-runs’ of previous posts…..maybe…….possibly…….I’m still ruminating on all this and trying to work out in my head what I really want to do……

So, forgive any bumps in the road as I go forward from here. I’ll try my best to get it right!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Prickly


Prickly was the prompt for yesterday. I couldn’t decide between prickly pear or hedgehog so I did both!


Thursday, October 25, 2018

Thoughts on a Thursday

Is there ever a day that mattresses are not on sale?

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Inktober #15 Through #20

#15 Weak

#16 Angular
(yes, the reference photo really was that wonky!)

#17 Swollen
(Gout....Husband's toe, a long time ago.)

#18 Bottle
(Husband bought me a new water bottle. I refill it and reuse it so I don't feel so guilty about trashing the planet. The last one was over five years old!! )

#19 Scorched
(self explanatory.)

#20 Breakable
(I break soooo many pencils points!!!)