Kinda makes you want to yell, "SPARTA!" doesn't it?
And it sure it one heck of a celebration before the post even arrived!
Lookie what I got in the mail today! A silent follower (and world's best gift giver/thank you card maker - someday we'll get her to start her own blog) put together this chunk of inspiration! I actually SQUEED!
Can you guess... yep, everything in here totals to 500 pieces of awesomeness!
From tea, to office supplies, to my favourite candies! WOOT!
What a great 500th post!
Tomorrow I'll have details regarding the giveaway celebration!
I make fine margaritas. The best in my opinion. But what to do when I find myself some where that the necessary ingredients are lacking? Anyone up for an intern position as my EMT and general minion/slave? Anyone?
hmmmm... but after this week of Mondays (did you experience some weird planetary shift, too?) I am already one post behind my celebratory mark of 500. So perhaps I will try to do double duty and catch up this evening.
I still need to do my creative space (always a bit of fail at that, but I'll keep on keepin' on) and that should make me up.
Although things have been a bit dismal - and I think the cold wind, random hail, thunder storms, etc., all have something to do with this - I still was able to catch up with a very dear friend who is a very new parent. Unfortunately health is not so good for our littlest new baby boy, Henry, but things are looking good for the long run and I can't wait to meet him in person.
We, of course, discussed the oddity of being of a certain age and single. Thrilling I'll admit. I have always been such a flirt it's like sinking back into myself.
This, however, means I did have to open up the treasure chest and dig out those old rules I put away thinking I probably wouldn't need them for a good long while. And, yes, Shannon (Gibbs) is absolutely correct - everyone needs a code to live by (I think it is excellent advice, by the way, to not date a lumberjack; thank you, Shannon). These are just a few rules I've dusted off recently (not that I'm dating, but just as a friendly reminder to behave myself):
1. Never go back (if it didn't work the first time it ain't gonna work the second time)
2. Never date a married man (this was difficult enough at 23, but now it seems all the interesting ones come with rings)
3. Never date a man your friends have dated (this limits the men in the dating pool rather drastically since most of the men I hang out with also tend to hang out with my girlfriends - but this one is also one of the most important rules EVER)
So those are my rules.. to which I have added Gibbs' rules because they seem just as pertitent and I'd trust Gibbs with my life, so here we go (also the numbers aren't messed up.. Rule#1 is twice because they both tie for importance and not all of his rules have been given)
Rule #1: Never let suspects stay together.
Rule #1: Never screw over your partner.
Rule #2: Always wear gloves at a crime scene.
Rule #3: Don't believe what you're told. Double check.
Rule #3: Never be unreachable.
Rule #4: The best way to keep a secret? Keep it to yourself. Second best? Tell one other person - if you must. There is no third best.
Rule #7: Always be specific when you lie.
Rule #8: Never take anything for granted.
Rule #9: Never go anywhere without a knife.
Rule #11: When the job is done, walk away.
Rule #12: Never date a coworker.
Rule #13: Never, ever involve a lawyer.
Rule #15: Always work as a team.
Rule #18: It's better to seek forgiveness than ask permission.
Rule #22: Never, ever bother Gibbs in interrogation.
Rule #23: Never mess with a Marine's coffee if you want to live.
Rule #38: Your case, your lead.
Humans are so very self destructive and when we begin to spiral oh boy do we spiral.
I'm not sure why but when things go bad we instinctively find escapism by making things worse. Alcohol, drugs, food, sex.. etc.
Mine have always been food and alcohol. And seclusion. Seclusion is dangerous stuff.
Tonight I believe I coined the phrase "Basement Eating". It's what I've been doing for the past few years. No wonder I gained 30 lbs. a couple years ago and thank god I've gotten it off now!
Bad food, alcohol, and hiding. Like I couldn't stand to tell the world.. my closest friends, even, just how bad I was doing. Now, I was telling people how miserable I was - trust me. I'm hardly a quiet soul. But I never really got out. Instead I hid. It was easier.
But what I should have been doing is what I am working at doing. Getting out and letting my friends heal me. Those people who have known me the longest,or best, or who recognize my heart.
I have been spending time with my nearest and dearest. Trying to swallow my guilt for being such a terrible friend because I was so derailed the past few years. I should apologize more. I really should. If you're reading this I have no doubt you know if I owe you an apology. You also know I mean it with all of my heart and I love you dearly.
Thank you all for still loving me and taking me in... when I'm self-righteous, when I'm an asshole, when I'm mean and I hope I make up for it when I'm caring and helpful and funny. You all all mean the world to me. You are my mirrors for my soul (so, yes, when I'm a bad person it's no wonder I hide).
I love you. Thank you for waiting for me to get my life back on track.
I can't even tell you how excited Aurora and I were to discover the tin actually OPENED and inside the lovely pins were living in a cork. How very clever!
And now it is time to admit to my horrible fail... Oh the pin cushion is done and is on it's way and I think it is a pretty good little pincushion (even with steel wool mixed in with the stuffing to keep the pins sharp). But I somehow messed up my international shipping and it came home to me.
So I had to email my now not so secret recipient and double check addresses and let her know I hadn't forgotten her but was a dunce of some sort and that it is now on it's way again. Poor thing (she and the pincushion). She is, of course, very gracious and we both hope the US and UK postal service will help us out a bit and not be so cruel this time round!
Yea for Kate for putting on this lovely swapiness and putting up with all of us and our crazy pincushion antics!
okay. not the final one really. but you know you sang it in your head and I bet you'll be thumping about in your brain for a little bit longer.
This post is my 496th. Granted I've only been VERY consistent as of late. But having started long ago I get to soon say I'm celebrating my 500th post.
Which means we must celebrate, mustn't we? And that will probably involve some of this...
But before we get too carried away by tequila (because who am I kidding, that pink stuff isn't mine and the glass is too small) I want to prepare all of you.. and give you plenty of time to know that on Friday (the anticipated date for said mile mark) I will be hosting a
So make sure to tell your friends... at least I guess if you can talk them into giving you the prize if they win.
What will the giveaway be? I'm not sure. Perhaps an (owl)ie, perhaps something completely unexpected.. maybe a new venture.. maybe something customized.. maybe a kiss - okay, not a kiss because that will be very hard to mail.
BUT now is the time to put in your ideas. Anything you'd like to see me try? (no, I cannot put my foot behind my head.) Any certain item in my shop I should replicate for giveaway? Let me know on this post and we'll count your idea as an added entry!
oh, and just so you don't forget.. "IT'S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN..Dah da dah dun.... dahdadadadun"
Do you believe the universe gives us signs when we are on the right path?
I think so. It has always happened a lot for me through books, though occasionally through deja vu, and when sought through astrology and tarot.
I have been taking my time reading "An Echo in the Bone". I am very attached to the characters. My Grandmother, you may know, introduced the Outlander Series to me while I was in high school. Helped refine my interest in history.
Thus far while reading over the past hour or so I have come across things which act like road signs. They have already written Aurora's name a few times, talked about Alice in Wonderland, and now, I have just come across a reference to name of a scholar I only recently (helping to clear books from the library book sale) paid any mind.
It is comforting to know these things - in a book I care so much about - have been written a little bit just for me. And how odd and overwhelming to think that had my grandmother not introduced me to those books half my life ago.. had I not had a daughter... had I not at this very moment been reading this very book...
These signs help along that path I've started to the garden. They make even the obstacles a little bit sweet because I am reminded they are all part of the learning process. And I think grandma is probably helping to set up those signs now.
I think a lot about my grandma Ellie. I always have, but her presence as of late pervades most moments in my life. I carry her purse with me, I use a pen found inside it, I wear her jewelry, I write for her and about her, I can smell her when I am sad, and I know that I want to make her proud and be the woman she expects me to be.
It was her birthday last Friday. So, grandma, I hope you had a wonderful time among the stars and thank you for taking so much time for me - I've really needed it this year.
I do believe I ran myself into the ground, which helps explain my long absence. Too many evenings feeling harried because I didn't have that book read, or the stitching done the way I wanted and still needed to find time to get out of the house and do the laundry and all those things we still have to do including being a mom.
I grew very grumpy and exhausted to the point of aching and one night last week fell asleep before 8 o'clock.
And I must confess that not finding time to visit my lovely blog world did not at all help! In my sudden anxiousness to connect to people around me I neglected a very important part of me. The part that makes it possible for me to be around others some of the time. My hermit side. Each day sitting at the computer to say some quip about life has become very very important. A necessity. My grounding each day where I could honestly review my life and how I am living it.
Now, some of you may have these moments, where you sit down to spew your day and all of those horrible inadequacies surrounding you and suddenly as your fingers fly across the keys they become less important. Those are not the things I want to share with each of you. And searching each day for something positive and enjoyable really helps to keep my life the same.
Not that I have not been enjoying myself on my small hiatus. I have read amazing books, spent time with wonderful people, learned about myself, worked hard, and remembered.
Yesterday Aurora and I got to help at a fundraiser event for a scholarship and play all about campus. And my daughter really is a friggin' awesome rockstar (to quote her directly).
And afterward I got to spend time with some very dear friends who forgive me for having so few dirty little secrets because they know I make up for it with my obsessive personality.
(the very sexy Sun-T and me)
So with that I'll just leave you with three very important words from last night:
You might find this quite difficult to believe but I was kidnapped by pirates, and when they saw me swagger in my green heels they made me their queen...
but that was after hot half-naked werewolves captured me on that reservation, because I will always ally myself with bloodsuckers, and when they saw my muscles some ran away and the others demanded they could love no other...
Which was right before the Asian Moscow Mafia inducted me into their mob following a grisly scene at Gambino's...
We broke a few laws.. but mainly Rebecca
And Emma may have been abducted by aliens - we still haven't decided
I feel very neglectful of this dear space. I have thought often of writing over the weekend, but Earth Day is looming and I have been feeling the need to craft. The College is having an Earth Day fair and I am having a booth, which means, of course, I must have wares to sell. So I spent Friday evening and some little time yesterday and all afternoon and evening today stitching and cutting and threading and picking out buttons.
I have quite a pile, but I am too lame to walk back up the stairs to take photos. You will have to wait until I have more time (I really should be in bed as I fully intend to get up early and go to the weight room to work out - yes, gasping and/or fainting is appropriate since I only get this kick for a month or so out of every year).
I also fully intended on reading The Virginian today as book club is Thursday. But I rarely get time to craft during the week and I can read after Aurora goes to bed... so stitching won out.
Although my sore fingers don't feel I've had much of a break I did actually get out of the house this weekend. In fact, I even went so far as to shower and put on makeup and pick out jewelry.
Yesterday I took Aurora and my godson, Alex, to the World Center for Birds of Prey. I'm not a huge bird fan, but I have been there before and when Alex showed interest a few weeks ago I thought it would be great fun. It was a bit chilly, but we still packed a lunch (PB&J and carrot sticks were all my non-cooking skills could handle). We got to see two different bird presentations - one with a Swanson Hawk and one with a Peregrine Falcon. Aurora and Alex (10) were too young to care too much about the museum-y part of the center but it was still a lovely outing.
And today I got to go to a very fancy brunch for the wonderful Rebecca's birthday at a lovely restaurant downtown Boise! The Red Feather. I had no doubt of how fun it would be at the very instant of arrival as I was greeted by very attractive young men. Perfect way to start the day.
We planned out our food orders well as there were so many tempting choices and we all shared food round the table and it was all scrumptious! I ordered a morning cocktail called "Bacon and Eggs". It was a bacon infused bourbon with egg whites and something something something... the first two sips threw me a bit as I really did not anticipate HOW Food like it would taste. We also got some mimosas. It was such a treat!
And not that we have a drinking problem, but on the way there I may have stopped to get coffee at Dutch Bros and had to hide (not easy to do at a Drive Thru) as Rebecca pulled in for her own fix... and shortly after arriving at the restaurant and ordering drinks we decided we should document - this is ONLY mine and Rebecca's cups:
So that's Rebecca's Dutch (I left mine in the car so I would have a beverage on the way home which is a 30 minute drive), the taller glass in the back is her cocktail called "French 75," her ice water, my hot water and lemon, our two mimosas and my "Bacon & Eggs."
But I'm pleased to announce I didn't have anything other than coffee and water for the rest of my crafting day.
I like routine. I'm a bit of a stickler for it. For years I spent every Sunday driving 40 minutes to visit my sister and my niece, and then nephew. And for a while I have had glorious crafting Sundays. As of late I have been thrown off schedule so I feel very neglectful of my crafting. But I have lots to do so I best get back to it.
I am behind by half an afghan... I should be on my fourth for the year but only partially through the third. Fortunately, I have teh basement kitteh to help.
I have a few bags I want to put (owl)ie patches on to have for my booth at the College's Earth Day Fair.
And then there is this felt, which was gifted by Eddie's mom, to trim and sort and get ready.
And so many things I'm supposed to be reading. I just checked out the book for this Thursday's book club (oops) and I'm supposed to have my questions for my book (since I'm hosting next month's) by next weekend, so I best get to reading.
I've had every intention of reading, really.. but with all the distractions of trying to be out of the house and then reorganizing things I really haven't had much brain capacity. BUT! I'll have these lovelies framed soon to help remind me to carry on.
Check out lots and lots of creative spaces at Kirsty's!
I was awarded the Staff Association Employee of the Month today.
I was completely taken by surprise. The surprise took a lot of work from a lot of people, because I'm on the Staff Assoc. Exec and so are two others in my department. In fact, I normally update the certificate each month. They made a dummy file in case I opened it.
But with lots of help and a few well timed fake meetings and ummm... lies :) I was taken aback and even cried a bit when the last presenter (a faculty member with whom I have worked closely, and my nominator) gave out the award to yours truly.
So a very big thank you for all the thoughtfulness (and for putting up with me and still liking me most of the time).
Everyone involved in Kate's lovely swap (see the pretty picture there on the right?) is making such gorgeous pincushions.
I cringe every time I see one.. or someone mentions cushions or pins. And there are quite a lot of you out there, you know.
Little images pop into my head and then flit away and having never made a pincushion before I'm still letting my synapses fire away a bit more before I begin - because sometimes I get carried away and get into trouble before having thought something all the way out.
I am also wondering what I should do about getting knobs on my drawers. When we moved into this house the built-ins (which need painting in the worst way) had horribly little porcelain knobs with pink flowers on them. They were very tiny and practically useless and always came unscrewed. I replaced them with ribbon when I simply couldn't stand it any longer.
They aren't horrible. They even work. But I am getting bored with them. I would love something shiny. Someday I'll be painting these cupboards a tone of taupe and I think something silver would look lovely or any color really as long as it goes with taupe and maroon.
After looking through a giant chain store hardware I've come to realize there are a lot of scary knobs out there.
You know, I never envisioned myself writing those words in this particular context. Just goes to prove how grown up I really must be.
But back to scary knobs... I'm probably not looking for something from a gianormous store or that is very expensive. Something clever - for example, I've seen it done with silverware and it was gorgeous, but seems like it might take a long time since I'm not really sure what bit I'd need to drill a hole in metal.
So something inexpensive, clever, attractive, won't take too long, or be too much work (speaking of knobs.. my desired hardware is starting to sound a lot like a really good date) - any of you know of any.... ummm, knobs, that is.
This weekend was filled with some great time to myself and organizing - two things I very much love. Re-set the master as my bedroom. And while a lot of the items (like side tables and art) have been in the space for a long time it feels different to know this whole room is ALL MINE. We moved all of Eddie's things to his room, and I got to play around with so much closet and cupboard space I almost peed my pants.
This picture is from earlier today before I put the doors back on the closet! I had three fourths of those clothes crammed into half the closet earlier. They are so happy now.
The white shirt on the wall (which frustrates Aurora because I don't wear it) is my Three Days Grace shirt - the shirt I wore in 2004 when I saw them in Spokane and now bears their signatures. The piano chair was my great-grandmother's - she did the needlepoint on it and a matching pattern on a different style piano chair in the front room.
Lots of fun things in this corner!
like my jewelry holder - which was in the upstairs closet being of no use to anyone when we moved into the house and I took it over after this christmas when I got so many new necklaces.
This was my old necklace holder made from a metal hanger a couple of years ago. It is perfect for my fancier silver and gold necklaces - but wasn't so great with a lot of jewelry because it all got tangled.
And my student art. The reproduction Wassily Kandinsky was a house warming gift from my friend, Aika. The beautiful manga was a present to myself two Christmases ago from a student at the holiday fair.
I, of course, have to have my favourite football player about. Goodness, he is delicious.
Look at HOW MUCH SPACE I HAVE. I'm all a twitter!
My earring drawer which hasn't changed much.
And then since I get the other little drawer too, I rescued the Wii packaging from recycling, made a few modifications and now have another tray.
And then my favourite afghan (from grandma Ellie), and my grandma Jinny's chenille bed cover, and my great-grandmother's chenille rug.
As a very funny side note, I threw in a heap of white felt and the chenille rug into the laundry today. Eddie asked me if he could start the load and I said it was a bit empty. This apparently meant he should throw in his maroon robe.
So I now have pink felt and a mauve rug that used to be white and pale pink.
Fortunately, I found it funny since everything dyed so evenly and not at all splotchey. But I thought Eddie was going to faint when I showed him my heirloom rug. I think he'll leave my laundry alone from now on, don't you?
This morning, in anticipation of the Easter party at school, I let Aurora wear her favourite dress (the one I NEVER let her wear to school) along with her fancy black shoes (the ones I NEVER let her wear to school). She, in turn, asked me to fix her hair (which she RARELY does).
She makes quite the perfect little Lizzy Bennet
This afternoon at lunch I wrote a post which was not all bad, but not very nice either and when I went to post Blogger had an error. And I sighed with a small smile, because when you ask the universe for help it usually grants it. So I did not try to recreate the post but was glad I had written it all out for myself.
INSTEAD I am going out for ANOTHER girls' night (three in one week)! And I am even more excited because we are going to my favourite restaurant (yes, the Hollow), so I figured I better do another outfit posting.
The Pink shirt is from the first clothing swap. My jeans were bought for $8.00 at Steve&Barry. And the necklace is from my birthday clothing swap.
It is raining outside today, so I have decided to wear a light jacket which my mom bought for me. I have given up on my hair since it is naturally curly and frizzy I have no choice but to let it do what it will in the wet. I have this amazing product though that I use no matter if I've left my hair wild or straightened it.
(I haven't reproduced that Oz house scene for a while,
so if I've dislocated a hip flexor I'm going to pretend this isn't why)
My "Abby" shoes. I picked them up for $4.50 at the Youth Ranch the same day I found Dark Pirate Jesus. What a great day! And the lovely love socks were a present from Frances for my birthday (and she's the one who wanted me to post outfits, so how wonderful).
The earrings and brooch were also acquired at the birthday clothing swap. And because I'm down 22lbs (WOOT) I'm so excited to hold another one soon!
Last night, 20 minutes before going to bed - only because I needed the 20 minutes for the damn eggs - I remembered I needed to bring in some hard boiled eggs for Aurora's daycare project.
My confession is I completely suck at Easter. I live year long for Halloween. Christmas has featured some of the happiest moments of my life (including the week I had Aurora). I like St. Patty's because I'm a Scandinavian with a wee bit o'Irish who loves to drink. But that's about all I do for holidays really - other than mine and Aurora's birthdays, of course.
I don't particularly like Fourth of July because I hate fireworks; I'm pretty sure I couldn't tell you when Labor Day or Memorial Day take place except one is in the Fall and we start school and one is in the spring and we end school (but I don't know which is which and I don't care to look). And Easter.. I am a miserable failure at Easter. One would think with a minor in religion (and mainly christianity) it would at least pop out at me. But it doesn't.
We didn't celebrate it growing up. There was an odd year or two at the step family's house where people brought scary casseroles and there was too much chocolate lying about and dead animals hanging from walls.
I have tried. Really. I think I've managed one Easter basket in Aurora's four years. I was going to make her a hello kitty basket this year, but you know what? It's EASTER and there is no basket. I couldn't even remember to take candy to school (I did run at lunch so I wouldn't be the worst mother in the world).
And thank goodness for schools because Aurora is ecstatic to go to her Easter party tomorrow and bring home eggs to add to her collection (she apparently remembered she has plastic easter eggs in her top drawer in her bedroom desk... I did not. They have been there for a year. She is four and I am 30 - I'm telling you I have a mental block about Easter).
But to be perfectly honest, although I am glad she'll have fun, I really could care less about her Easterness. What I do love is that when she's excited she tells people "Happy Halloween" (even had me write it on Rebecca's thank you card the other day). Or this evening she remembered a "Christmas" song.
I took her out for a girls' evening (which she was disappointed to learn consisted of only the two of us) and we had dinner. We had to wait an inordinately long amount of time for our silverware. But she was entertained because she had TWO cups of tea (one peppermint and one green) to which she was adding honey and cream. And I was very proud of her good taste.
After the long lost silverware arrived and we are able to eat our the cold food Aurora tells me how much she loves silverware. I like silverware. I suppose I love pieces of silverware (like my grandmother's and mother's silver spoons). But then she suddenly starts singing, "Silverware! Silverware!"
I'm not entirely surprised by the outburst because we turn everything into a song. But what is funny is she is singing it to the tune of "Silver Bells" and as I begin laughing she tells me there is nothing funny about it and it is exactly the song the snowman sings and it is very important. The old couple in the booth behind us got quite a chuckle as I tried to explain it was actually "bells" in the song and Aurora told me to not be "ridiculous".