Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Dog Whisperer... Me.

Oh, what a day is today.

I've had a total of six... wait, no, seven dogs at and in my house today.  You know, the house that normally holds myself and Dukas?  I've given a bath to a dog who showed up at my door, led a parade of them around my neighborhood for over an hour, and met 5 or 6 of my neighbors.  But wait... let me start at the beginning.

Around 2 PM today, Dukey started whining at the window.  Now, barking and growling generally mean that the neighbors are checking their mailboxes or raking their leaves; but whining at the window means we have a visitor of the canine variety.  And so we did.  2 of them.  A boxer with a collar, and a little yellow mutt without.  

Once they were found friendly, I tied the boxer up outside, and called the vet's # on his tag.  The emergency answering service could not help me, and I would have to wait until Monday to find out who the dog belonged to.  Say WHA?!

Friday, April 29, 2011

To Be or Not To Be... A Princess

Sure, why not blog about Kate & Williams wedding.  May as well weigh in.

Here's my scoop w.r.t. the royal wedding:

I did not get up early to see the wedding in real time.  I did not watch the entire replay.

I did google the following things: "Kate's Second Dress" and "How Kate & William Met"

I did watch them kiss on the balcony.

And I do hope they live happily ever after.  Not especially because of the whole royalty thing, but mostly because they are now married.  Really, its what I hope for every married couple, the thoughts that run through my mind at every wedding.

Someday, I'll tell you all about my crazy Italian wedding.

But for now, I'll leave you with my favorite thing our officiant (i.e.- my brother B) said during the ceremony, a variant of the traditional Irish wedding blessing:
May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon the fields.

May the light of friendship guide your paths together.
May the laughter of children grace the halls of your home.
May the joy of living for one another trip a smile from your lips,
a twinkle from your eye.

And when eternity beckons,
at the end of a life heaped high with love,
May the good Lord embrace you
with the arms that have nurtured you
the whole length of your joy-filled days.

May the gracious God hold you both in the palm of His hands.
And today, may the Spirit of Love find a dwelling place in your hearts.
Takes  me back there in a moment.  Brings tears to my eyes.

Makes me really glad that there are things like weddings and whatnot.

What takes you back to your wedding/what do you want most at your wedding (someday)?

Would you like to be a princess?  I'm torn between pretty gowns and crown jewels, and sweatpants and lazy weekends.  I think I like just being me.  I'm not up for paparazzi stalking me eating breakfast cereal.  Can princesses dutchesses even eat simple cereal?  I do know I don't want my face on a plate.

Feeling nostalgic and weepy and happy to be myself,

** small note: When trying on wedding dresses, I had on a heavily beaded one and remarked that I didn't want it, it made me feel too much like I ought to be marrying a prince.  My MIL remarked quickly that I was marrying a prince... whoopsies!

5 Minute Friday - If I knew I could I would...

Five-minute-Friday is a a writing exercise put on by thegypsymama.  I don't want to bore you with these things, its just sort of my exploration into the world of blogging.  Feel free to ignore this post and move right along, or even go to her site and participate yourself!

Whatever you decide to do, please have a most perfectly wonderful Friday!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Lets Get Real, Folks

The Dukester and I went on a mini-adventure today.  We went to the dog park!

There were big dogs and little dogs, and Duke was the biggest, although he didn't know it (sweet thing, doesn't even know how to spell b-e-a-g-g-r-e-s-s-i-v-e, let alone challenge another dog).  They ran around, sniffing each other and wrestling, sliming  and drooling and barking and playing.  Basically, it was a dog's day, and what a day Duke had.  

And while the puppies were running around and playing, having the time of their lives, this is what their humans were talking about:

"Hi!  Which one is yours?"
"Oh, she sure is a cutie, whats her name?"
"Wow, he's so big, how old is he?"
"Oh, mine doesn't like to chew shoes, she prefers paper"
"He looks just like mine used to!  Oh, I miss my baby dog!" (this was me, I'll admit)
"Wow, your pup certainly likes to run!"
"Man, he's all muddy.  Looks like someone needs a bathy-wath!"

And so on.  Ad nauseum, if I may.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Naming Privileges and Ugly Kids

Two events have precipitated this post:

1.  I had a dream the other night.  In the dream, I had a baby and Handsome & I named her Georgiana.  *Please note that I'm not in love with the name Georgiana.*  Anyhow, Handsome's cousin has a baby named Gianna, and we wanted to call our baby Gigi, but had to check first with said cousin to make sure she wasn't planning to call her baby Gigi.  Because, you know, Gigi is a popular nickname for kids these days.  And we wouldn't want them to fight at Christmas when the present says Gigi.  She did not, in fact, want to call her baby Gigi.  Imagine that.

2.  Handsome and I were on a long-ish trip (5 hours) and were talking about my sister and her soon-to-be-born baby.  While discussing names, we got caught up inside another conversation about adoption.  And it goes like this:
Handsome:  If you buy a kid (how he likes to rephrase the word "adopt") from Africa, deep in the heart of Africa, you can't just go and name him Bob
Me: Then what would you suggest naming a kid from "deep in the heart of Africa"?
Handsome: Ra-ki-ki-ki-ki.
Me:  And you think this would help Ra-ki-ki-ki fit in here in America?
Handsome: -ki.
Me: What?
Handsome: You forgot the fourth "ki".  His name is Ra-ki-ki-ki-ki.
Me: I'm done with this.

So, in light of these recent events, I thought I would pull a story out of the archives, dust it off, and share it with you.  The title of my story is, "Why Handsome had his naming privileges revoked".

Baking Delights

Here's some of what I've baked!

Chiffon Cake (JOY) with Whipped Cream icing (JOY) and White chocolate shavings, topped with Strawberries

Leftover Chiffon Cake, White chocolate, & Strawberries 

Cheesecake with Strawberries mixed in.  I like to make the crust with Nilla Wafers.

Sugar Cookies with Buttercream Icing & "Mercury Sprinkles"
I've still got a rhubarb pie and brown sugar pound cake (in lieu of salted caramel brownies) to make for Thursday and Friday, but the juices are flowing!

Are you baking anything?  Tell me, so I can make it too!

Successfully remembering the butter, 

Capturing the Out-of-doors

I recently stumbled upon this blog post, You Capture, which invites people, every week, to take some photographs that capture a given category.  This week, its You Capture|Outdoors.  So, I got off my duff and went outside and took some pictures.  These flowers are all able to be seen, smelled, and experienced within 5 minutes of walking out my front door.

Honeysuckle: little flowers that produce BIG smell, beautiful and sweet. 
Blackberry Bushes: flowers that eventually fall away and give birth to sweet-tart berries.
Can't wait to see these suckers gone!

Dandelion: pesky flowers that give rise to only more pesky flowers.

Vinca Vine: these little guys pop up helter-skelter amongst some very dense ground cover.

Purple Beast (I don't know the real name): large, purely ornamental flower, climbing up my neighbor's mailbox.

Unknown Pink Thing: Its not especially pretty or flowerful, but it was there and I saw it.
Captured.  Done.

Magnolia Tree: I can't wait for these guys to show up.
So fragrant, large, and southern.
Its like the southern belle of America's flowering trees.

Tulip Poplar: big guys, high up in trees, hard to capture, but fun to find!
This is what I've captured.  This is what is outside my front door.  

These are the little pieces of beauty that surround me.  
What beauty surrounds you today?  
Post some pictures and link to here, or to the You Capture site.  

Or, if you think you're up to it, try to describe the beauty around you in words.  

Appreciating weeds and wild plants,

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Baking Days

This week I'm a baking fool, which is, for me, the very best kind of fool to be!

Tonight, I'm making some cookies both at a thank-you to a special lady, and for the end-of-semester party in my class that i teach.  I'm just not sure what kind yet.  But I do need to remember to hit up the store for some butter, because I'm out, and all good cookies require butter.

Tomorrow, I'm making another strawberry-rhubarb pie for an end-of-semester party for a class that I attend.

I'm also making it because I got a little carried away when I saw rhubarb for the first time this spring, and I may have bought 2 1/2 lbs of the stuff... I can neither confirm not deny...

... but if I were to confirm, I just plumb don't know what to do with the stuff, other than shove it in a pie with a bunch of strawberries.  Suggestions?  Anyone?

And then Thursday, I'm baking for our end-of-semester math department picnic *heck yes we know how to party*.  See, there's a competition, and every year, I lose.  I know, really bolsters the faith in my plans for a bakery, right?  There's this lady, and her initials are AC, and she beats me out, every year.  But this year, I'm gonna get her; I'm making salted caramel brownies.  If that doesn't win out against her sweet baking, I'm going to take her out in the parking lot afterwards.  But you didn't hear me say that.

Thats my baking plan.  In case you were curious.

Don't forget the butter,

Monday… Monday… Adventures on Monday…

I wish I didn’t know the Friday song by Rebecca Black.  If you’d like to wish the same thing but be unable to, here’s the YouTube Video.  If you’d like to remain unstained by the world, please do not click that link.

Anyhow, yesterday was Monday, (duh), but for my house, it was kind of like a weekend, too.  Basically, any day that Handsome doesn’t have work and isn’t exhausted is a weekend in our house.  Living in the college world gives me quite a bit of flexibility of schedule, especially with this semester winding down.  The idea is that, when Handsome is working, I try to get all of my assignments and preparations done, so that when he’s not working, I can spend fun time with him.  And yesterday was one of those days where we got to fit some adventure into an everyday day.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

How I Feel About Things

Hello!  April is nearly over, and I can't believe it.  Truth is, I'm not sure how I feel about it.

This is my favorite tree in the whole world.
I know how I feel about it.  Its May's coming that has me tied in knots.
I have a lot of feelings.

Sometimes I feel strongly.

Sometimes I feel "eh.."

Generally, like a lot of women people I know, I feel a lot of things, and in varying degrees.

I've made a list for you, here, of things I feel strongly about.  And things I feel "eh" about.

I feel strongly that everyone should have a birthday cake.
I feel strongly that dogs are better than cats.
I feel "eh" about requiring my dishwasher to remove every speck of food from a plate.
I feel strongly that rainy days are just as important as sunny ones.
I feel "eh" about wearing socks to bed.
I feel strongly that physical labor is a wonderful tool for working out being worked up.

The thought of watching a basketball game makes me go, "eh."
The thought of watching the Pittsburgh Steelers kick the tar out of any other NFL team makes me go, "Yippee!"
The thought of wearing stockings makes me shrug my shoulders indifferently.
The thought of finding candy in my Christmas stocking makes me fist pump vigorously.
The thought of helping others makes me smile REAL BIG.
The thought of going for a run makes me think about something else.

I feel "eh" whenever someone suggests going to a concert.
I feel strongly that everyone is good at something.
I feel "eh" about the emphasis placed on the wedding day.
I feel strongly about following recipes, and then tweaking them.
I feel "eh" when people just want to complain and are annoying.  Even when its me.
I feel strongly that each person has inherent value, even when they're being annoying.
I feel "eh" about things of the organic persuasion.
I feel strongly that a pitch black room, and a bed laden with multiple pillows and heavy blankets with a fan running is the perfect sleeping conditions.

Just in case you were wondering.

And now I'm wondering.

As we start this new week, this last week of April, how do you feel about things?

Testing the fatality of curiosity,

J.Crew Giveaway

Surprisingly enough, the winner from Saturday's giveaway is...

*drumroll please*

Jeremy White!

Mr. White, please be prepared to claim your winnings tomorrow.  Congrats.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Kitchen Fail # 1 & Giveaway

HA!  I just read the title of this post, and it sounds like I'm giving away my Kitchen Fail.

Doesn't that just entice the heck out of ya'?

But first, the KFail itself.

I started out innocently enough; I want to be a baker.  I like to be creative.  I want to create a yummy baked good.  Not a bad start.  

And then it became even more promising, as I drove past a Strawberry stand on the side of the road, realized I had cash money in my pocket, and came home with these:

And maybe this was heaping full as of yesterday at 6PM
And maybe there was another 1/2 of one also full yesterday that is now empty.
And no, I don't have an impulse control problem with regards to Strawberries.
Who's asking?
So that was a real boon.  And then, at the store, this guy was on sale:

Behold, the stars have aligned, the time for my creativity has arrived.

And let me tell you, I had big aspirations.  As I'm warming and mixing and rolling and pouring, I'm also thinking to myself, 
"Self, maybe this Strawberry Cheesecake Tartlet will become an Easter tradition.  Maybe people will beat down the door of your shop one day, exclaiming that they can't have easter without it.  Maybe you'll call them 'Easter Tarts'.  This has so much promise.  Nice thinking, self!"
Oh, how young I was then.  How naive... 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Friday is Good

Today is Good Friday, for those of you who observe the traditionally christian holidays.  For those of you who do not, your Friday can still be Good.  I didn't really think about this today (although I did last night), I just wanted to tell you all about my Friday and how it has started off so swell.  

As a side note, I think that Easter (and the season of Lent leading up to it, and the observance of Good Friday, etc.) would have more significance for me if only I would take the time to recognize their significance to my faith.  And although it seems this revelation (which should not be a revelation, but I am a master in epiphanies of obvious facts) has come too late this year, I plan to apply this to other holidays and years to come.  It seems a waste to me that I spend more time fantasizing about the menu I'll serve on a given holiday, rather than the significance behind said holiday.  FTR. 

In other news...

Handsome woke me up this morning with a phone call.  When I groggily asked why he was calling at such a loathsome hour (7:08 AM), he cheerily responded that he just wanted to talk to someone really attractive this morning.  And he thought about calling Carmen Electra or perhaps Shania Twain, but he said they weren't hot enough.  And when he saw my picture in his phone, he thought, "Now this is the girl I want to talk to!"  I suspect that perhaps the fact that Carmen's number is not in his phone may have come into play somewhat, but I'm going to take it at face value.  Made my morning a lot easier to start.

*** Handsome Fact #17: The names Shania Twain and Celine Dion are interchangeable to Handsome, and context clues are often required for me to discern his real meaning.

Also, I saw a Cardinal get hit by a truck this morning.  I never knew that one little incident could elicit such a range of responses in people.  Presidential elections, yes; Foreign Policy, sure; New types of Ketchup packets, absolutely.  But a single cardinal's demise?  Its clearly newsworthy (and I always report things that are newsworthy).

Scene: Cardinal swoops through the air, attempts to cross the highway, and gets mauled by a truck.


Me: Sadness.  I am upset that I had to see that happen.  I feel bad that the bird, which I find pretty, has been harmed.  I want someone to go put it out of its misery, since its still flopping around.

My brother B: Pragmatically indifferent.  "Look at it this way," he says, "Now that cardinal, who was clearly slow and unintelligent, cannot reproduce, and thus the lineage of the cardinals will be faster and wiser for not having that bird contributing to the gene pool.  Less Cardinals will die because of what happened today."

My Mom: Eleation.  "YES!" she shouts in my ear, and I imagine her fist-pumping.  She hates birds.

Although some of you, I'm sure, will align yourselves with one or more of these responses, I'm equally certain that there will be even more responses of varying degrees.  For example, my friend Bec will be agreeing with my Mom, but, since the reports of her bird-hating have been greatly exaggerated, she will also feel a twinge of sadness, and, I'm guessing, a sprinkling of indifference.

So tell me, on this glorious Friday of Fridays, how do you feel about the pwetty byrd?
I feel like the artistic rendering allows us to remain emotionally distant.
This should help those who feel too much not become a sobbing wreck.

Witness of Record,

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Public Service Announcement

To: My Adoring Public (or anyone who stumbles upon this page)
Re: Getting to know one another, sharing

As an FYI, I have added a new page, right over yonder called "Talk To Me"

It has a form where you can send messages directly to me.

Also, for those new to the whole reading of blogs (Hi Grandma!), if you would like to receive notification every time I post something new, you can go down thar and click on the "FOLLOW" button.  That should set you up.

Also, some people have mentioned having trouble submitting comments without an ID of some sort.  It is possible to do.  However, if you are having difficulty, you can go to the "Talk to Me" page and just submit something through there.  If you do submit a comment and would like me to reply to you personally, please include your email.  Otherwise, it falls on deaf ears, or something like that.

Merry April to all, and to all a Good Night!,

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why I need to call the PA State Police Tomorrow

***NOTICE: Grandma - Do not share this post with Grandpa.  He will get mad and yell at me.  And I hate when he yells at me.  Thank you.  That is all.***

So, as I mentioned, I made the long trip home last week.

And the audience asks in chorus,
It was long enough.  650+ miles long.  It was such a long trip that...

I had to fill up my 20 gallon tank 3 times

I ate nearly 20 points over my WW allotment

If I had started in the PM hours, I would have arrived the next day


It was such a long trip that I have to call the PA Stat Police tomorrow morning.

And here's why.

The trip, which started about 8:20 AM, was rather uneventful.  I had an audio book to listen to on my kindle (in case you haven't, and you have a kindle, you should check out  Which reminds me that I need to cancel the trial offer I used to get the book My Life In France by Julia Child for free), I had fruits & veggies packed to munch on, my Garmin set and "calculating".  I was ready to navigate.  

And navigate I did, for about 10 1/2 hours.  Pit stops were few, especially as Dukas refuses to relieve himself while on road trips (you needed that tidbit, didn't you?).  Finally, I crossed the PA border, filled up my tank for the last time, and an hour later I was seeing signs for Pittsburgh; all was wonderful.  I had finally gotten a hold of Handsome on the telephono, and informed him that the trip was going great, apart from a little sitting in traffic; there had been no mishaps and I had not gotten pulled over.  Other than to lend dramatic foreshadowing when I would re-tell this story in the future, I'm not sure why I added that last bit to the conversation.  As a rule, I don't get pulled over.  Its only happened 2x in my nearly 9 years of driving, and if we shorten it to 8 years, its only happened once.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Gardening: The Best of Times

I love my garden.  I just do.  

I loved my garden last year, too, and it betrayed my love by growing diseased and yellowed and by not producing wonderful succulent vegetables like I hoped it would.

This year, as you know, I've got high hopes for my garden, what with the extra large plot of earth and whatnot.

The only problem with my love of gardening is that it is an uniformed love; I don't really know what I'm doing here, I'm kind of making it up as I go along.  And while that is often my strategy for trying new things, I have found it oftentimes unsuccessful where living things are involved.  

Take, for instance, my dog.

I've never raised a puppy before.  So, when we got the old boy, we signed him up for puppy training at our nearly-local PetSmart (this is not a plug.  PetSmart does not know me, except for Janice who was our puppy trainer.  And I think she only remembers my dog's name.  Which is fair, since I don't think her name is actually Janice, but I can never remember it).  Anyhow, what I'm trying to tell you is that we sought out an expert when we wanted to know how to raise a puppy, because he's a living thing and it would be terrible to fail at that.

Doesn't he look well-trained and nearly intelligent?
All that proves is that I'm a wonderful photographer.
Whether we did it correctly or not, he's survived and is moderately well-behaved.

So now I'm trying to "raise" plants in this garden of mine.  And I don't know that I'm any good at it, especially if you judge me by last years results.  I'd love to blame it on Handsome (its a hobby), but he's pretty hands-off in this area.  

So I'm going to show you my garden, and ask you questions about its health or lack-there-of, and you can help me raise it?  OK?  Consider this a dry-run for the day in the seemingly-distant future when I actually have to raise children.  I'm going to judge you by your responses here.

Monday, April 18, 2011

For Dinner Tonight...

and tomorrow night, and the night after that...

Yep.  Gotta put together my list.  If you all want to leave now, that makes sense.

Really, this post isn't even for you, unless you're a nosey nelly and want to know what
we're eating here.

Yeah, this post is mostly for me.  Since I use so many online recipes, this is a great way for me to keep track of them all, know where to find them, and also remember what I'm supposed to be making.

And if you think it looks ambitious, I want you to know that we eat cereal sometimes instead of what I put up here. And if you don't think it looks very ambitious or healthy, well... I don't know, you're probably right most of the time.

On to the menu...

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Of a Weekend (+3 days)

Howdy Y'all!

Before I begin, I would like to take this moment to say that, while I want it to feel natural so that I can fit in (and imagine myself as Reese Witherspoon in Sweet Home Alabama), "y'all" feels weird in my mouth when I say it.  

However, I need to also point out that, despite my proximity to the 'burgh (Pittsburgh) during my formative years, I despise the other version, "yinz".  
*SHUDDER*  I can't believe I just typed that.  

I like the traditional "you all", and sometimes mix it up with a "yous guys" just for fun.  Handsome, however, would like to merge North & South in perfect harmony (and the Southerners groaned and started cleaning their muskets), and would like everyone to begin saying "yinz'all" in a demonstration of world peace.  He'd also like to merge, as he says, East & West.  He demonstrates this by wearing knee-high black socks with his shorts & sneakers.

In case his reasoning is lost on you, please know you are not alone.

So, back to this weekend+3days.  Wednesday morning, I packed up my things and my trusty steed Duke-a-loop, pointed the Jeep north, and started driving.  I unpacked, visited, partied and then repacked, pointed south, and drove again.  Now I'm home.

Now you know.  Feel free to go about your day.  There isn't anymore.

Except thats not true.  Maybe I got too comfortable doing that lying thing last week.
There's bunches more.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Truth

The truth is that I was not completely honest with you last week.  I wasn't just busy and running around.  The truth is is that I was traveling up to Pennsylvania (Oklahoma PA, exactly, if you can wrap your head around that.  We also have an Indiana, PA) to surprise my grandparents at their Surprise 50th Wedding Anniversary party.  See, Grandma reads my blog, and I couldn't give it away!  But the party went off tonight, and although not all of the plans fell together, it was a roaring success.  And afterwards, a group of us went to my Aunt Sue's house and drank tea and laughed and talked.  

I have some pictures of the event which I will put up here once my tail (and Duke's) is safely back in SC where we (currently) belong.  There is one picture that will be absent, though, and its the one I just couldn't take; the picture that would convey how it felt to sit around a rough-hewn table in my Great Aunt's kitchen, laughing and talking in the yellow-y glow of the incandescent lighting, visiting with family I haven't seen in too long, celebrating a love that has weathered a half a century.  I want that picture, because I don't want to forget what it felt like tonight.  But I don't think any picture would have captured it adequately.  So I chose to forgo the inevitable disappointment and try to capture it in my memories.

I might not always remember it, but I'm gonna try, because tonight was one for the memories.

And thats the truth.

Exhausted from the weight of my lies,

p.s.- I miss Handsome.  

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Hot Cakes

I know.  With me, its food food food, all the time.

Hi, I'm glad we could meet.

But tonight its a little more than food.  Because I'm back on my "what is the destiny of my life" kick.  Perhaps its just too much time on my hands, or perhaps its just boredom.  Or, perhaps its a change stirring deep within me, struggling to prevail against the here and now.  Or maybe thats the fabulous pasta I had for dinner.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011




Since you've all got nothing on your mind, and I've gotten most of my goings ons out of the way, you're about to be hit with a big scoop of streamofconsciousness business.  Might even throw in a Handsome story/saying at the end, who knows.  Prepare yourselves.

picture of what I'm thinking about right... NOW:

You'll notice that the cinnamon roll is larger than my hand.  That is a requirement for awesomeness.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Chat Time

Hey there.

Howya doin'?  Hope you're doing good, great, swell, I'd even settle for O.K.

Me, I'm keeping busy.  See, I've got a lot going on every night this week, and I won't have time to do anything.  The craziness really starts Wednesday, and I've got a weeks worth of stuff I need to get done before then (and yes, I know that leaves tomorrow).  Stuff I usually put off "strategically schedule" for right before time is up.  Stuff like homework assignments and teaching preparations.  Stuff like cleaning and organizing and getting Duke all set up for when I won't be home.  Stuff like laundry so handsome doesn't have to wear stinky clothes, and grocery shopping so handsome doesn't eat microwaved s'mores for breakfast, lunch, & dinner.
True Story: Once, when I had been gone on a 2-3 day trip, I came home and found all the food I had prepared for handsome still in the fridge/freezer.  I asked him if he ate out while I was gone; he did not.  "So dear," I asked, "what did you eat while I was gone?"  His answer: peanut butter out of a jar for lunch, and microwaved s'mores for dinner.  6 of them.  He's a bachelor trapped in a married man's body.
So anyhow, I'm kind of busy right now.  I'm sure you are too; most people are these days.  And I'm not feeling really creative today, probably won't feel real creative tomorrow either.  So I was thinking, what if you tell me what you want to talk about?  Or what you want me to talk about.  I could expand on stories you already know (if you know stories that I know), or you could suggest random topics, or you could ask questions and then I'll answer them.  Unless those questions are entirely uncomfortable-making - then I'll just say so.  So just leave a comment below, and I'll post about what you want.

So anyhow, thats my idea for now.  Please make up for my lackings.  U complete Me.

And, for being so sweet, I'm going to post some pictures that I've taken, just for you.

Fireworks (because you couldn't tell)
I love fireworks
Duke loves Christmas
Handsome loves danger
(oh, and I didn't take this picture.  I was too busy falling after him)

Peace Worldwide (worldwide... worldwide...),

Sunday, April 10, 2011

I Have Found Her, She's an Angel!

I found her!  I found her I found her I found her!!

This may not make as much sense to you as it does to me, so I won't keep you in suspense.  I found the cinnamon roll recipe that will change my life.  I adapted it from The Pioneer Woman's recipes here and here, and its AMAZING.

"her" that I found
With this cinnamon roll recipe, I can change the world.  Or at least, I can become that woman that I want to be.   And what woman is that, you ask?  I'll tell you.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Anybody Home??

Nope.  I'm not.

Well, technically, yes, but we've been having another few of those days (you know, where its sunny and 80 with a threat treat of thunderstorms?), and I've been BUSY BUSY BUSY outside!  So busy, that its the end of my week and I've got 43 activity points stored up in WW (if that means anything to you; to me, it means chocolate icecream).  So busy that if I had gone missing, you should be on the lookout for my forearms or back, because I'm pretty sure they're going to kill me tomorrow.

And what have I been doing?

Well, I took this:

Sad, empty garden beds from last year...
and turned them into this:

Happy, (ful)filled garden beds from this year!
*warning: the rest of this post might make you feel as tired as I do*

The happy/sad aspects of the pictures could be contributed to the fact that the one above was taken during a rain storm, and the lower one was taken in 80 degrees and sun, but I prefer to think that the garden is, in fact, happier now.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Failed Exercises

So, per the previous post below, Handsome bet me (more or less) that he wouldn't pick me up from school today when i was done with classes.  I thought he was bluffing and allowed him to drive me there and drop me off, all the same.  I thought, "He must be bluffing, because we're meeting people at 3:30, and I get out of class at 3:15, so there's no way he'd actually leave me stranded."

Thats what I thought.

Thats not what happened.

See, if you look on the time stamp of this post, you'll see that its past 3:15.  Heck, its past 3:30!  As I live & breathe (and type this), its 3:41.  And I'm at school.  Because I'm stranded.

But its not because I've married a man who is stubborn, incorrigible (which I spelled correctly the 1st time!! go me!), and strong-willed, although he is those things a lot of the time.  I'm stranded because of something that looks a little like this:

though probably only a little.

This reminds me of another time (but much worse) that I was left stranded due to a fire call.  But I'll have to tell you more about that later, because Handsome has vanquished the flame monster and is now here to get me.

Living it like I stole it, 

Conversations While Driving

While Handsome drove  me to class today, we had a whole bunch of pleasant conversation.
Here's some snippets, for those of you who couldn't be in the car.

Me: So you'll let me drive (a long distance) by myself?
Him: Yeah, I guess so, if you think its best.
Me: Will you be able to sleep while I'm gone? (because he worries about me)
Him: No, probably not.
Me: Well, consider it an exercise in faith.
Him: "An exercise in faith" huh?  How about you consider whether or not I'll pick you up from
       class today an "exercise in faith", how about that?  Put that on your exercises.  Where's
       all the crap coming out of your mouth now?

Me: That old truck is coming hp pretty fast.  You might not want to pull...
Him: *floors it*
Me: ...out in front of him.  Or you might, I guess.
Him: If you would practice driving with me on NASCAR, maybe you would grow a set
       "get brave" and become a better driver in the real world.


Regretting the day NASCAR came into our lives, 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

I've Been Lied To

And most likely, you have been lied to, too.

Shocking, really.

And the worst part is, I, no, better yet we were lied to by America's sweethearts.

Yep.  Its startling, but true.

These gals, right here, have lied to me for the majority of my life.

Topanga                           Kelly                               Anita

Not Quite a Poet


Him: *Playing the new Nascar game*
Me: You didn't like Nascar when I met you.  You're not the man I married.  Do you even 
       recognize yourelf in the mirror anymore?
Him: I'm like a butterfly.  Before, I was a caterpillar, and I didn't know any better.  Now I've 
       morphed into a beautiful butterfly.
Me: (Nascar fans are like butterflies?)

Me: *Eating breakfast*
Him: Hey.
Me: Hey, good morning!
Him: You too.  Hey, do you know where I can find a way to watch an execution?

Me: *Picking Handsome up from work*  Good morning!
Him: You know, I used to think you were really wimpy, but this kid got a scrape and called for 
       the ambulance the other day.  You're not as wimpy as him.
Me:  Thank you?


I recently had to physically put my hand over Handsome's mouth, stop him from replying from something I said, and caution him with this:
"If you feel the need, at any time in the future, to respond with some statement with a remark involving Hitler, China's one-child program, or genocide in general, please, please filter yourself."
Sometimes its just enough to get through the day.

Reveling in my very special husband,

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Buttermilk Extravaganza

Thats right, ladies & gents.  This morning we had a buttermilk extravaganza here at my abode.

But we did it without buttermilk.  In case that bottles your mind, here's the easy-peazy-lemon-squeezy substitution for buttermilk.

For breakfast, since Handsome is just home from a 2-day shift, I was making Perfect Pancakes.
And since we're currently without the Mrs. Butterworths, I decided I could make homemade syrup, too.

And since this is my space here, and I get to do whatever I want, I'm going to do a step-by-step cooking post.

If you want to leave now, I understand.  This isn't for everyone, and there's gonna be a lot of pictures.  But here's the teaser, just in case you can be swayed:


Monday, April 4, 2011

Do You KNOW??

Seriously, do you know what kind of day we're having here?  Do You?!?  

I feel like you probably don't.  Because if you did, you would be here.  

Yeah, thats right.  I said it.

The best place to be right now is where I am.  Well, not precisely where I am, because I'm in the basement of a campus building, surrounded by math and weird smells.  But in general, in the Upstate of SC today is where you want to be.  

It is GLORIOUS outside.  Its about 65, slight breeze, and sunny.  Oh, and add to that the fresh-cut grass everywhere, with the smell floating on the breeze.  And, I almost forgot, the abundance of flowering shrubs.  And the availability of sweet tea (which I've forsaken now that I'm on WW, but I might just need some soon).  AND I'm going to the farmer's market on campus today.  SO MUCH EXCITEMENT!!!

I would take a picture, save for two problems: (1) It would pale in comparison to the experience, and you'd call me a liar for labeling this day glorious, and (2) I left my camera at home.  Really, the only problem is 2.  I'd totally take a picture if I could.

So instead, I'm going to make you a collage of pictures I can find on the interweb that might come close to capturing the gloriousness of this wonderful beautiful day.

This is close.  Wait!!  We need one more picture to complete how I feel about today:

Hushpuppies.  Candy for the soul.  Done.

And yes, the hushpuppy picture is just as big as the outside collage, and yes, the size signifies each objects relative importance.

Love me for who I am,

Sunday, April 3, 2011

For its Unintended Purpose

I found a secret.  A secret that just might change my life.  

Or at least how often I have to vacuum...

And what is this mystery object which has been used for its unintended purpose, you ask?  

Let me show you:
Yep.  I know.  Revolutionary.

Oh, but the best part!  The unintended purpose!

Here's what I did:
I used the lint roller directly on my dog.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Hello April! Its that time again!

First: I don't really participate in April Fools Jokes.  I used to.  Just don't, anymore.  Not sure why.  I like a good practical joke.  Did you have/experience any good ones?

Second: Handsome comes home today from training all week, and I am P-U-M-P pumped!

Thirdly: I went to the gym today for the first time in... oh, 4 weeks?  I'm going to be sore tomorrow, but I really enjoyed working out.

Fourthly: I didn't mean to make my list this long, but while I'm at it, I got out of a research meeting today, which makes me want to jump for joy

Finally: Its time again for me to plan out my Menu for the week, put it up on here, figure out what I need to buy, and go grocery shopping.  You may not enjoy this so much, but it worked SO well for me last time, I'm doing it again.  But I'll put it below the fold, so you don't have to watch if you don't want to :)

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