Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Post 563 The Recovery

cut and pasted from Facebook cos it's easier...

Donna is happy with the surgery so far. The surgery and recovery hurts lots less than before! Thanks for the well wishes! At least a week not using the hand tho before the doc gets a look. :(

...and i got a new sling with a nice padded strap!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Post 562

Well, tomorrow is surgery.

As if things weren't already quiet around here...I'll most likely not post anything for a while. I'm going to take advantage of the recovery time to rest and make Spencer wait on me hand and foot for a few days.

That reminds me, need to go find that old sling from the last wrist surgery. Doc says I'm not getting a big fat wrap or a sling - just some fancy pants waterproof dressing that is flesh colored and no one will even know I had anything done.

Whoa!!!! But I WANT a big fat wrap and a sling!!! How am I supposed to work the sympathy angle if NO ONE will even know I've had anything done. Gah.

Definitely have to find that sling!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Post 561...finally

Let's see how long it takes to get to 570. I'm watching you Post Counter!!!

This whole 'can't have this that or the other within so many days of surgery' really sucks.

I haven't had such bad headaches in a long time. While I normally don't take Advil at the drop of a hat at any old pain, it sure would be nice to pop a few right now.

I won't complain too much tho...cos I am going to have surgery in less than a week and hopefully my pain and other issues will be resolved.

What's really going to be hard?

No food or liquids - not even water - after midnight before the surgery.

When is surgery?

1:15pm

Yeah, that's going to be tough.

Especially as I'll have Spencer with me and the kid is constantly eating.

Good grief, I'm going to be a real crankypants. A really hungry and thirsty crankypants.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Your Days are Numbered Alternate Universe/Alien Being...

OK, so the surgery scheduling lady called me this afternoon.

Tomorrow morning is my pre-op form fest and exam and the surgery is on Dec 29th at 1:15pm.

Everything is happening very very fast, but that's a good thing...and it's what I want - I want this taken care of YESTERDAY.

The Results are In

So, after going thru this, that, and the other with this damn wrist...I'm to call the surgery scheduling lady tomorrow morning and schedule surgery in the next 7-10 days.

They know it's some sort of skin tag thing that shouldn't be where it is...what they can't seem to figure out is why it hurts so damn much as it's nowhere near the nerve but is acting like it's pressing on the nerve. Let's just hope there are no surprises - as the doc said this morning - all indications point to no surprises, but with my luck lately, well, you just never know. I'm sure it's an alternate universe that exists in my wrist and is attached to my nerve by an invisible cord to syphon off electrical pulses to run their generators or a sentient being whose taken up shop in my wrist or something weirdly sci-fi-rific like that.

Whatever, it's coming out. Soon.

And I am thrilled beyond belief.

The logistical details will work themselves out somehow and just think, Spencer is off soon so he can take care of me! And he was just complaining yesterday how bored he's going to be during break cos he's got nuttin to do!!!

Heh. Heh. Heh.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

My Post Counter is Wrong

Wrong I tell you! I've been posting and posting and jabbering on and on and the count is still in the 550's...I swear it's been that way since the beginning of summer. I KNOW I've posted more than 10 times since June. Gah.

Whatever, time for some more jabbering.

I miss knitting.

I tried with the Tunisian Hook last night - no dice. Even that was too much. Regular crochet doesn't work either.

Neither does sewing, making jewelry, or any other sort of crafting.

My consultation appointment with the wrist doc with the "New and Improved" MRI is tomorrow morning. I'm SO FLIPPIN' TIRED OF WAITING.

The wrist REALLY hurts. The damp and cold IS NOT HELPING.

There has been a whirlwind of sorting and organizing activity here in the Chaos.

My apartment complex is getting inspected by the City on Friday morning. Nothing like an "incentive" to get you moving a bit faster.

The only storage areas left for sorting are the big, useless dining room closet and the smaller, but still as useless hall closet. Those will have to wait until after the inspection. Boxes and whatnot that have already been sorted but don't have a home yet will be marked appropriately and put wherever there is room - need to get them out of the way.

I've made so many trips up and down to the recycling bins and dumpster that I should have buns of steel.

I've made 2 trips this week (so far) to the thrift store with a very large metal cart full of donations each time - on the bus - it's been quite easy actually. The big cart is now sitting full in the corner waiting for another run. Can't go tomorrow cos of doc appointment and Friday I'm expecting a package delivery, so I guess I'll start up with the thrift store runs again next week.

My doc appt is tomorrow.

I've been doing some culinary experimentation. It sounds a lot better than its been tasting, trust me. It's been fun tho - and I can usually salvage most of it, so we haven't been starving.

My doc appt is tomorrow!!!

Back to work putting things away. I've done as much sorting as I can, now just to get it all back under the bed and in the closets and tucked away til after the holidays. I will do more as time and wrist permits - don't think I'll have it all done before the Holidays and I really do want to decorate for Xmas. So....everything goes away, clearly marked and mostly in their permanent homes.

After New Year tho...it's back at it full force!

I got a new exercise DVD today from my DVD swap club. I'm so excited. It's Core Conditioning and what not, but uses belly dancing moves. I watched it thru while eating lunch today (yeah, I know) and I think I just might be able to actually do this one and keep on doing it - I like belly dancing and the instructors aren't annoying and my body is familiar with the moves - and it's very low impact.

I'm going to the doc tomorrow.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Cunning Plan

Latest news from the Chaos...I've been sorting stuff!

I know, wonders never cease.

I have had a plan in my head for a long time about where I would put stuff that I'm keeping. I would sort thru a box or two...either recycle, toss or give away whatever and then move to the next box. That sounds like a good plan, right?

Well, the only problem with that is that the stuff I'm keeping does not have a home - yet. So things are added to other boxes in no particular rhyme or reason and I end up taking two steps forward and one step back. Sometimes two.

I get rid of one box here, one box there and the next thing you know I'm creating another box of stuff that will eventually need to be sorted thru again and so on and so on.

Well, enter the latest cunning plan. As I was sorting, I started putting the things I'm keeping in their actual "future homes". It was working, but not so much.

A few days after I started that, I decided to "map" out my storage plans. I spent about an hour or so thinking, listing things and then drawing out an actual "map" of the final homes for all my precious stuff.

Let me tell you, it's the best thing I've ever done as far as all this organizing stuff goes.

I have also been keeping myself concentrated on ONE AREA AT A TIME until it's all sorted out. That has been the hardest thing to do as far as all this organizing stuff goes. Every storage place and area in the Chaos is a hodge podge of anything and everything. There is no organization. And yes, I have higher concentrations of some things in some places, but there is a little bit of everything all over the place. Sigh.

Mapping example: I have two units of metal shelving in my bedroom. Glamorous I know, but I needed heavy duty shelves and they were the most affordable best bet at the time. One unit has been designated as the new "crafting stuff" home. So now as I am sorting thru stuff from each shelf, one at a time, from the top down even, I only put back on that shelf the "craft" stuff. If it's not tossed, recycled, or given away, I check my map, see where it is supposed to live and go take it there.

Sometimes things get tight in the "new" home, but when that happens, the items are put into a bag, basket, or box and left as close to the new home as possible. The box or bag is also marked as "already sorted and waiting for space in the permanent home".

So far, this has been really working for me. I have been sorting a shelf per day since the weekend, so the first unit is almost done. YAY!!!!!!!!!

So far, I have tossed and recycled quite a bit of stuff, so the whole moving it to it's new home has been kept to a bare minimum. Which is good, cos the more stuff I get rid of the better off I'll be.

As I move from area to area getting rid of more and more stuff, it should become easier to put things in their new homes.

Having that "map" is the best thing ever. I have it taped up on the mirrored wall in my hallway. It really really helps!

Next up is the second metal shelving unit in the bedroom. I am starting with the storage areas in the apartment. Closets, cabinets and shelving units. As I go thru all the storage areas and get things started in the "new home" scenario, it will get much much easier to go thru the boxes all around here and get things put away properly.

My goal of having things more organized for Xmas is looking like it just might happen after all.

And that is a good gift to give to those of us who live here in the Chaos.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Activity

Hello all,
Well, Spencer has given the thumbs up to the latest attempt at Pumpkin Pie, but we both agree that the crust sucks. So next time we make a pie, we'll use a different crust and see how it goes. At least the filling recipe works - that's the most important bit!

The other day, I was going thru my closet, drawers and container-of-clothes-that used-to-fit-and-will-again. You guys know how that goes...sigh. Anyway, I managed to get several grocery bags (ok 8) of clothes and accessories to give away. Lots of old stuff, stuff I haven't worn in years, clothes that don't fit anymore and clothes that I don't care if they ever fit again.

Again, you know how that goes...

Anyway, I kept running across clothes that still had tags. Pathetic. Chaos hoarder that I am, I still had the receipts and went to Ross (that's where I get 99% of my clothes and accessories) and got a store credit. With that credit, I bought some things for the kitchen.

I also bought a bunch of socks (damn those necessaries like that really add up quickly, don't they - and they always all fall apart at the same time!!!) and a few pairs of gym shoes.

Which is why I'm writing this damn post in the first place. I decided while I was sorting thru clothes and more and more went into the container-of-clothes-that used-to-fit-and-will-again that I was going to have to work a lot harder to get into the damn things. I've got a LOT of REALLY NICE clothes. I've been really down about my weight lately (ok, for pretty much all my life) and thinking I REALLY need to do SOMETHING more than what I'm doing now. Riding my bike is good, but lately, I'm not riding all that often and that's really not going to help in the long run.

I enjoy doing my exercise outdoors. So I decided that when I took all this stuff back, I would get myself some walking socks and running/walking gym shoes. And I did. That was yesterday. I walked for an hour this morning. It was cold. I'm freakin' insane.

I finally did it. I've been thinking about doing something more than just riding my bike for a very long time - 2 weeks or so to be exact - actually a LOT longer, but thinking seriously for about 2 weeks. Sorting thru my clothes on Sunday turned out to be the catalyst I needed to get my ass in gear.

And it walked on the trail for an hour this morning at the ass crack of the day. It was cold. Which made me walk faster, which was good, cos you get more out of walking if you actually put some effort into it. I hurt, but that will go away with time. It's been years since I've distanced walked.

Tomorrow I ride Puff. I don't know how long I'll go for, but I'll be leaving with Spencer when he rides off to BART in the morning - which is when the sun comes up. You know, the ass crack of dawn. Sigh.

And the last reason I'm writing this post is that I need some help. I need a goal to work for...cos apparently, losing weight, being healthy, and living longer aren't good enuf to get me to exercise as much as I need to...sigh.

If anyone knows of any local 5k Walks or walk/runs or bike rides that don't cost much and are easily accessible by public transit...please let me know. I am going to do as many as I can. I need to keep moving. It's the only way I lose weight.

20 years ago, I lost about 50 lbs. The way I did it was thru the Jenny Craig diet program and training for The Mutiple Sclerosis 150 mile bike-a-thon (MS150). I ate JC meals and rode my bike 2 hours a day. I was a lean, mean, riding machine. I kept off the weight until I got pregnant - and I STILL have that "baby weight" - even tho my "baby" is almost 16 years old. Sigh.

OK, so I'm 20 years older and can't afford a fancy pants diet program. So what am I supposed to do?

Easy, drag my ass outside to move every day - for now that is riding or walking - my 20yrs older and 60lbs overweight body can't take much more than that right now. Eat right, get enuf rest and all that sort of stuff. With a hell of a lot of work, and a visible goal on my calendar to work for, I can do it.

If you know of a website or a walk/ride, let me know in the comments. My ass thanks you - really it wants to curse you, but I'm making it mind its manners.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Updates

Still recovering from the fun of the wee hours of this morning. I didn't sleep at all.

Maintenance men have been going in and out all morning and the carpet cleaner will be here "sometime today".

Kitty is in hiding. With all this coming and going of strange people, I don't expect to see her for at least 2 days.

Pumpkin pie is actually pretty good. Especially after sitting overnight. The real test is when the pie expert tries it tomorrow (that would be Spencer).

Pluses and Minuses at 1:15am

Minus - a hissing noise which is obviously water running, but where? (12:15am)

Plus - I had just climbed into bed so it's not like I was sound asleep

Minus - I can't find where it's coming from...it's not any of the toilets, I didn't leave any of the faucets running.

Plus - I found it...

Minus - the hot water valve under the bathroom sink is spewing forth a wee bit of water

Plus - this apt complex has on-site 24/7 maintenance, who are now getting a call

Minus - I just stocked up on all sorts of toiletries, especially the female sort which are now getting soaked cos the wee bit of water is now rivaling Old Faithful and just as hot

Did I mention it was the hot water valve?

Plus - the female toiletries are super absorbent

Minus - EVERYTHING is getting WET while I frantically pull out the rest of the stuff under the sink.

Plus - Maintenance dude shuts off water to my apartment

Minus - water is flowing into bedroom at this point

Did I mention it was HOT water?

Plus - Maintenance dude brings wet vac and sucks up the water.

Minus - lots of things are VERY WET and instead of doing what I had planned for tomorrow (oh yeah, today), I get to dry everything out. Except the female things, there is no hope for them. Altho I think I can salvage the ones in the box that only got a wee bit wet from the first trickling of water...

Plus - he fixed it

Minus - he has to come back tomorrow (umm...today) with more sucking machines and a carpet cleaner and yeah

Plus - I have water, in all the right places

Minus - I'm WIDE AWAKE.

Plus - I don't pay for water or for the gas to heat it.

Thank you Maintenance Dude - I really wish this could have happened in the middle of the day - and thank goodness I was home when it did. It's now past 1:30am and he's still putzing round in the bathroom and here I sit. WIDE AWAKE.

Telling you all about my super absorbent female toiletries, oh and the flood of hot water in my bathroom/bedroom.

Haven't seen Kitty for a while. She's pretty much traumatized, the wet vac was pretty damn scary. Don't think I'll see her for a few days except for litter box runs and occasional munching. Sigh.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Pumpkin Pie Poem

I smell something baking, it's another pumpkin pie.
I've failed at this already, I keep asking myself why?

I put in all the ingredients, just like in the list.
I should have gotten a pumpkin pie, but all I got was pissed.

I pulled it out of the oven, it was not a pretty sight,
The center was still mushy, gah, that sure wasn't right!

Beep beep beep goes the timer, it's time to check the pie,
It sure does smell good, could this be my final try?

I turn on the oven light, so far it looks good to me.
I open up the oven, and GAH, what do I see?

The middle is still liquid, it's happening again.
I put it in for more time, let's see what happens then.

Beep beep beep goes the timer, it's time to check the pie
I'm beginning to think, YES! This IS my final try.

The whip cream is at the ready, the pie is cooling on the rack.
I hope when I cut into it, I won't be screaming FRACK!

If it doesn't work, that's ok, I've got more pumpkin cans.
I'll keep trying til I get it right, for we are pumpkin fans.


I'll update you all tomorrow on the status of this second try at Pumpkin Pie. I followed the recipe on the can of Trader Joe's organic pumpkin mush and that was not only a failure, but it was EPIC. And on Thanksgiving. Not a good scene - we had our hearts set on pumpkin pie that night.

This all came about as a brilliant idea to stock up on cans of Pumpkin mush while it was in the stores so we could enjoy Pumpkin Pie during the non-Holiday season - whenever we had the craving for one. I figured it would be easy to make. Can't be that hard right? Silly me.

I googled online and found a website with recipes using Trader Joe's ingredients. So far so good.

If this one doesn't turn out, I have several more to try.

Not yer grannie's nachos...

The "Oh no, not more turkey and stuffing leftovers I can't take it anymore" Nachos

Spread some corn tortilla chips on a plate.

Chop some turkey into wee little chunks and sprinkle across chips.

Chop up some stuffing into little bits and sprinkle across chips.

Sprinkle shredded cheese liberally over the top of it all. Oh crap, ran out of shredded cheese. Pull out a slice of cheese, tear it up and put it over the last half of the nachos.

Heat it all up in the microwave until the cheese is melted.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. I am so sick of Turkey Day leftovers. Wouldn't be so bad if Spencer was here with me, it would have all been gone Friday...but it's just me and I can't take it anymore. I think I'm going to toss whatever is left after tonight. No more turkey...please.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

This one is for my Honey...

Bohemian Rhapsody, Muppets, what more could you ask for?




Saw it over at Go Fug Yourself...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Today's guest bloggers are....

...Hi everyone, today we have guest bloggers...Cow and Honey...Ms Cow and I are recovering from our afternoon at the SF Bead & Design Show yesterday (no photos). Lots of ideas swirling round in our brains. I think my crafting Mojo is actually coming back. Yay!!!

Anyway, on to Cow and Honey...

Helo evribody. Martin has been nagging me to rite a blogpost so I am gowing to rite about howe to get to sea Ms Cow.

Mi firts plan was to desine and bild a bote with sales, and sale acros the see to Ms Cow. Martin was desining the outside of the bote, and i was desining the inside, with places for us to slepe, and hav cow parteys, and a baffrum, but no baff, cos cows dont do baffs. But martins screen broke, and he dusent hav a bote desining program on the old puter. He sed that we can use pensil and paper, but he makes to meny mistaiks and we wud need lots and lots of paper.

Then wen he was cleening owt the kichen he left the model plane a frend had maid on the cher with me and I cud hav a gud luk at it. It is a very fast plane with lots of supersonix so I thort i cud lern to fly and then i cud sea Ms Cow very very cwikly. But Donna sed plane luks just like a target drone and the er forse wud shute it down! Thats not fare!!! I cud paent it blak and wite so theyd nowe it was me but Martin sed they use radar and that dusent sea colors.

But now i hav a new plan! We saw a syense program on the tely, and they torked abowt cwontums. cwontums is wen a partykul is in 2 places at wons, but there very clos together. And they had a pussy cat that was alive and ded at the sam time, but i didnt undestand that bit. Cows ar much cleverer than partykuls, so I cud be here with Martin, and with Ms Cow and Donna at the sam time!! I just need grat big laser and a wite cote, so peepl nowe im a syentist.

Ok, this post now has two authors... Don't you just love these science shows that over-simplify everything? I've tried explaining that the distance between the places a particle might be is governed by its mass, not how clever it is; and that a particle doesn't get to choose where it might be, so there's no guarantee that all Cow's particles would end up in the same two places; and the pussy cat idea shows that one of the two Cows might be alive, and the other one dead! I'm making some headway with that one, because the thought of a dead Cow as well as an alive one would definitely upset Ms Cow. I'll concede on the white coat though, Ms Cow will indeed think he looks clever as well as handsome in a white coat...

Cow is currently conferring with Sidney the woolly dalek, which really concerns me, because with Sidney anything including lasers will involve exterminating things, since that's what daleks do, even cuddly woolly ones. If you hear in the news that the north of England has been reduced to a smoking ruin, you'll know that Cow's career as a quantum physicist has been less than totally successful. And I only made one mistake when we were designing his boat; serves him right for constantly demanding we make it bigger!

NOTE: Cow refuses to use spell check. Honey says that Cow complains that the red squiggly lines are very annoying. D'oh. Maybe we can get Ms Cow to convince him that he really needs to use spell check...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Wrist Update

...and here I sit still not knowing what's up.

Get to follow up appointment. Wait.

Get called back. Wait.

Doc comes in and we start. Takes one look at MRI and radiologist's report. Starts mumbling and swearing under his breath.

Things not going very well at this point.

Seems like the MRI tech was having an "off day". He did not put a marker on the spot they needed to look at and on top of that, did not take pictures far enough up my arm to show the whole area they really needed to see.

Sigh.

Bottom line, Doc rips MRI supervisor a new one, which I'm sure was passed down to the tech. I was sent back to the MRI dept where I made an appointment for a partial MRI Tuesday morning.

Why wait? Well after the doc came back and explained a few things and apologized profusely, he said he wasn't going to be in for a few weeks, so I could take my time with the MRI re-do. And they weren't scheduling any non-urgent procedures that close to the holiday anyway.

Gee thanks. Just what I wanted to do...wait some more.

I did get some sorta good news out of it all...doc said that from what little he could actually see of my little bump, that it didn't seem to be attached to the nerve. And then threw a whole bunch of big fancy medical terms at me which he thought it was...and when he translated to English, it was basically a flap of some sort that needed to be removed...yada yada yada...no more pain.

All I really heard was MRI re-do, most likely not attached to nerve, no more pain. He says we really won't know until he gets hold of a good MRI - of course - but he seemed pretty sure it wasn't on the nerve.

Blah blah blah...yada yada yada...still hurts...still gotta wait.

In the meantime, I've got lots to do, don't feel like doing it and am going to do it anyway, attitude and pain be damned.

NYAH

Monday, November 09, 2009

The Wrist Thing

Hello All,
Can't remember if I've ever said what was actually wrong with the wrist, so here is the story.

It's not Carpal Tunnel. There I said it. Very tired of people telling me "it's just CT - you need to stop this, this and this". Well, it's not.

It all started 16 years ago. I found a lump on my inner wrist. A ganglion cyst was removed. That was 1993.

In 1995, a smaller cyst returned - in the same area. It never bothered and I forget all about it until about a year ago. It was just a bit of weakness and or pain, every so often until about 2 months ago.

For some reason, it did something like shift or whatever and the real pain began. Big pain. After about 2 weeks of denial and just hoping it would magically go away (yeah, I know I should know better), I called the doc.

Primary doc said she could take care of it in the office. I was skeptical because I felt it was somehow different this time. I was right, she sent me to a orthopedist - a hand specialist.

The next week, I was getting poked and prodded and pinched and sent home crying after an x-ray. Yes, it hurt that much. Nothing like an exam to help you feel better, no?

An MRI was ordered. An MRI was done this morning - almost 3 weeks after it was ordered. Almost 8 weeks after it first started hurting like the dickens. The insurance company took their time pre-approving it. Yeah.

There is a follow-up appt with the doc this Thursday afternoon. I can't wait to find out what the heck is going on...I just want to get my wrist back to the way it was and get on with knitting, sewing, biking (more than I am now) and just doing stuff in general. It can get quite difficult sometimes to do the simplest things. UGH.

And the pain just keeps getting worse.

But things are looking up.

And that's the story of the wrist.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Contest! Fabulous Prize!

Not from me tho, I'm just trying to win it. :)

Such being the case (we love free things and prizes here in the chaos), go check it out. AntiM is giving away a few cool things for your home. Technically one is for your furry friend, but still, you win it.

So click on over, enter and don't forget to say Donnaz Chaos sent you (I get extra entries if you do).

Hopefully I'll win the heated leopard print kitty dish and that little witch I call my Precious Little Princess Kitty can stop going medieval on my good wrist - she's pretty much scratching/biting the shit out of it lately. Just giving her extra treaties isn't cutting it...she apparently wants MORE.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Cowmon Sense and Dressing Up

Hello fellow Fashionistas!

Last post we chatted with Ms. Sammie and we came to the conclusion that she looks FABULOUS just as she is...well, she does!!!

Which gives me a pretty good lead into today's post...

We're going to discuss "working what you've got". Basically, we are all individuals with our own styles and "looks" and we should "work it"! Those in the fashion industry really love that phrase. Those younger fashionistas out there use the term "rockin' it". She's really "rockin' that outfit"!

A few weeks ago, I lost one of my nose spots. I was embarrassed and I was afraid to go out or be seen by anyone.




Well, then Donna and I saw on the news about something very exciting happening in San Francisco and it drew us both out last Saturday (I'll explain later) - even with only one nose spot. I didn't care, I had to go!!! While we were out and about, I learned a lot of important things about myself and others.

There were so many people out and about in the City. It was a beautiful day! I did a lot of people watching as I peeked out from Donna's bag. So many wonderful outfits, so many fashion disasters. It was all so wonderful... We stopped for a rest by the waterfront at a little park by the Bay Bridge. There were lots of doggies there playing in the sun. One doggie had a doggie wheelchair!




Lots of people kept stopping and pointing and taking photos, but he didn't care. And neither did the other doggies. They were all running about, chasing balls, sniffing each other and playing all sorts of doggie games! We sat and watched them play for a while. I thought to myself, he's really "working what he's got". He doesn't care what anyone else thinks of his wheelchair. He's doing his doggie thing and no one is gonna stop him!

Sometimes we choose how we look (clothes, hair color, glasses, etc), sometimes we don't (tall, short, round face, etc). As long as you are comfortable with your "look", no one can tell you it's good or bad. We'll definitely wonder whether some of you have mirrors at home or not (you with the pink eyebrows and fried hair, I'm talking about you), or some of you may make us uncomfortable or even jealous.

There were so many "looks" out there. Definitely a "Good, Bad, and Ugly" sort of day. It was fantastic!!!

OK, now it's later, so time to tell you what drew me out of the house with only one nose spot...

The San Francisco Opera had a costume sale!!! They opened their warehouse to the public and put up 25 years worth of costumes for sale. Partly to clear out their inventory, mostly to raise money for the Opera. We saw it on the news Friday night and just HAD to go take a look.

The day started out with going to the bike shop with Spencer where they did the final adjustments on his bikebikebike. He left from there to go riding with his friends, so Donna and I took off to SF for the sale! She was so excited she hardly slept Friday night. She kept mumbling something about it being a bit of a dream come true. So many wonderful, hand made costumes in one place!!!!

When we finally arrived, there was a very long line...it was about 4 blocks long! In the sun. We had no water, no sun screen, and no hats. We were totally unprepared. We knew we were in trouble when we started seeing people with lawn chairs, coolers and sun umbrellas as we walked further down the line. We were so out of our league. As we turned round and headed back towards downtown, we vowed we would try again at the next sale. This time we would go EARLIER and we'd be ready for ANYTHING! All we really wanted was to look at how the costumes were made and then look at the really fancy ones and try on some too! How fun would that be?!? There were some designed by Versace!!! There was even a long beaded dress by Bob Mackie! How exciting, no?

Donna and I just love costumes. We love to look at them, design them, and construct them. I'm studying costume design now...





...so it was very disappointing for us not to get into the sale. We were a bit upset at the world, and that's when we went wandering about trying not to feel too sorry for ourselves. It was a gorgeous day out, so we didn't want to come and lock ourselves away all day again.





We even had a visitor stop by as we ate our lunch!



Anyway, back to costumes... Costumes are fun! They can transform you into anything you want to be - not to mention they are fun to design and to make! It's fun to be someone or something different every so often, but you don't need to do it all the time - just be your own wonderful selves!!

Today is one of the most favorite days of all in the US to dress up - Hallowe'en!

So remember, be yourself - work your own style - have fun dressing up - and use your Cowmon Sense! Happy Hallowe'en!

Next post we'll take a look at a new book we picked up the other day - talk about FABULOUS!



The Kyoto Costume Institute's: Fashion, a history from 18th century to 20th century...drool!!!!

Oh, and Donna has fixed my nose! Yay!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Spencer's new bikebikebike

Almost forgot...this needs its own post!

Spencer has finished building his "dream bike". Except for a smaller sized wheel on the back, he's got all the bits and pieces he wanted and has them all assembled.

Behold.....




And here he is, Proud Papa with his "baby"....



He says it rides like a DREEEEAMMMMMMM.

So very proud of him and all his hard work. He worked his butt off doing odd jobs to earn the money to buy all this on his own. Along with some gift money, it was all him. And then he used his bike mechanic skills and put it all together - with some final adjustments at the bike shop (for safety reasons).

Still working hard at being unemployed...

Hello everyone,

Things have been tough in the Chaos here. Lately I've been a bit down so NOTHING is getting done around here. Just the basics to get by. Being sick last week, disappointment after disappointment and life in general has just been dragging me deeper and deeper.

No creativity let loose, no making of anything, no sorting, no organizing. Nothing.

I get up late, I chat with Honey for an hour, I sit on the couch with the Kitty and read or sleep the day away. Horror of all horrors, I've actually been watching daytime TV!!!! Talk shows only, no soaps, and the talk shows are of the more "classy" type. No Jerry Springer or that other dude allowed. Sometimes I put on Discovery Channel all day.

I've learned a lot about building cars (Overhaulin') so I guess it's not really time wasted, right? Yeah, right.

My Mom and Sis sent grandma's vintage beads on Saturday. The USPS attempted delivery on Monday (that was QUICK!!). Silly me decided to go out and enjoy the nice weather, so I missed them. I've been trying to get it re-delivered ever since. I finally cornered the carrier today and he promised he'd bring the box tomorrow.

I can't wait to get my hands on them! I have lots of plans in my head and hopefully I can pull myself up and out of my current funk enough to work with them and get going on some really cool stuff!!! Which I hope I can continue and grow into SOMETHING going on around here besides moping and feeling sorry for myself.

Today I decided I need to put myself on a schedule. Time blocks need to happen for daily/weekly chores, deep cleaning, sorting/organizing, creating/making, bike riding, exercising, relaxing, and so on. I need to pull myself up and get my butt in gear or NOTHING is going to keep getting done. And I want this place looking good by Christmas. I want to start the new year with an organized place. I know if I just made myself do something little every day, I could do it. There really isn't that much to do, I only need to apply myself a whole lot more.

I'm even thinking about going back to school. Don't know what I'd study yet, but the thought is there - again. Especially since I'm having such bad luck on the job front.

On the wrist front, I've been dealing with pain from a "cyst" type thing on my wrist. My insurance company is stalling the doc's office. They're not being very timely with responses for pre-auths, etc. I don't know what is worse, the pain or the frustration. Meanwhile, the pain gets worse and worse. Gee thanks insurance company. So glad you care so much for your members. So very glad this isn't life threatening.

On a happier note, Ms Cow will step in and do some more fashion posts. She's really getting into this...she is making notes for a post as I type. We bought a new book about Fashion History and she's had her nose in it since Monday. I can't wait to see what she comes up with!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Part 2 of My Chat with Ms. Sammie

Ms. Cow: Hello again my dear.
Ms. Sammie: Meow...meow.

MC: Remember I said I'd have some things for you to look at?
MS: Merowww...
MC: OK, let's get started then...Here we have humans trying to get with the black and white...



I think it's too geometric.
MS: Meow!
MC: I knew you would agree. Here we have some Ben and Jerry Cows being well, Ben and Jerry Cows. They are very...um...avante garde...



MS: Merow?!?!?!?
MC: OOOH! Look at this Ms Sammie. A kitty really going all out for the black and white Cow look!!



MS: MEOW! Meow meow meowmeowmeow....MEEEEEEOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWW!!!
MC: Yes, my friend, I agree. It's a bit much and really, Kitties should stay Kitties and Cows should stay Cows. It's the way Nature intended.

MS:MEOW!
MC: Exactly and you really do wear that solid white well.
MS: meow (blushing)




Until next time, use your Cowmon Sense!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Girl Crush

Today is our first anniversary! Happy Anniversary Sgt Puff (Puff for short).

I've had my beautiful bike for a year now and I love her! We've gone on many adventures and covered many miles together. I've been keeping track (sort of) of all our rides and have a sort of mileage tally for you. Keep in mind that I'm about 3 months behind on entering our rides, so the numbers are actually a bit higher*.

Distance Traveled: 429.12 mi.
Carbon Offset: 461.5 lbs. of CO2

Isn't she gorgeous?




And here's a photo of the happy couple taken this past Saturday on their way out. It was a great day for riding.



To celebrate, we're off riding today with Spencer and his bikebikebike when he gets home from school. And the BIG GIFT is a trip to the Bike Kitchen tomorrow for a tune-up. She DEFINITELY deserves a bit of TLC for taking me everywhere I want to go and for getting thru Thorn Season.

This next year, I think we should increase our mileage! I'm not going to set a concrete number, cos then I only get myself in trouble. Just promising to get out and ride more is enough for me. The numbers will tell the story next year!

Oooh, final count for the entire thorn season (incl original tires):

Puff 6 Thorns 2

*I promise to post the final numbers once I'm finished entering in all of our rides...

Thursday, October 08, 2009

New Feature...Cowmon Sense Fashion with Ms Cow!

Welcome everyone to Cowmon Sense Fashion!!!

Donna is off working very hard at being bored and so on, so I decided to post a little something for the fashionistas out there. She made me promise to use spell check so that everyone would understand my fashion tips. She has a valid point. Sigh.

For those of you who don't know me, I love Fashion! I watch fashion shows on TV, I read fashion, design and sewing blogs on the internets, and I read fashion, style, and sewing magazines. I am a student of design and hope to have my own cowture line some day. I have my own little notebook that I carry round taking notes and jotting down ideas, and of course, sketching out my designs. I'd show it to you, but it's all top secret. Don't want any naughty fashion spies stealing my designs!

My first post today will be about Black and White. It's the latest thing! And being a Black and White Cow, I'm at the height of fashion. Today I interview Ms Sammie, local house cat and demon kitty from hell - who is ALL WHITE.





Ms Cow (MC): Hello my dear. Can we talk?
Ms Sammie(MS): Meow.




MC: Ms Sammie my friend...you've got the White bit down...you need some black to break it up. It's just so...pale. You're not a Vampire Cat are you?
MS: Meow.
MC: Let's have a look at you...lovely coat (pet pet pet)...yes, some black here and there would be fab!!!
MS: purrrrrrrrrrrrr





MC: Yes, yes, yes, that's all nice, but what are you going to do about getting some color?
MS: Meow
MC: Getting hair color dripped on you when Donna is coloring her hair is not quite what I had in mind...
MS: MEOW!




MC: Yes, yes I know...it's color...but it's brown. She needs to dye her hair black. Then you go give her a nudge. Better yet, take the bottle of dye from her! That spot is just too small.
MS: meowwwww
MC: You tried my dear, you tried. Don't fret, she'll be at it again in 4 weeks. We have time to formulate a plan...

Next episode, we'll have some examples for Ms Sammie to look at...until then use your Cowmon Sense*!

(*copyright 2009, Ms Cow Cowture)

Thursday, October 01, 2009

2 years today!

It's been two years since my car stopped working and I couldn't decide what to do with it. Eventually I donated my "Scooter" and I've been car-free since.

I've become buddies with the local car rental agency and they give me deals whenever I really need a car - visitors from out of town, KublaCon and so on. Various friends ask me every so often to "babysit" their cars when they are out of town.

All-in-all, I have not missed not having a car but for the few inconvenient times I was in a hurry, or it was HOT out or I had just missed the bus. Not really any occassions that would warrant buying a car.

That being said, I will buy another car eventually...most likely when I get another job. But it will be a small fuel efficient puddle jumper (as my Dad used to call small cars).

In the meantime, we have our awesome bikes, our transit passes and our feet to get us to where we need to go.

Happy 2 years without a car!!!!

Stay tuned - in two weeks, it's my first anniversary with my Bike. :)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

I know it's Saturday cos Blogger says so...

...this week I have absolutely no concept of time or what day it is...

Oh well. Right now, I know it's Saturday. I'm sure I'll wake up tomorrow thinking it's Wednesday or even Saturday again. A friend commented at dinner "isn't every day a Saturday when you're out of work?" Pretty much as the days start melting into one, but I really do like to keep track of things...sigh. I think my brain is going on vacation. Really need to get going on some crafting - I need to keep it a little bit more stimulated than I have been. I've been reading a lot, but it needs some diverse activities.

Right now, I just wanna go to bed and get a decent night's sleep. I haven't had one in over a week and it's showing. I get easily confused, disoriented, and am prone to zoning out. Getting a bit more regular with the bike riding will help, but the weather is just too hot to do that. Sigh.

Anyways, I've had a nice cup of English Tea, cuddled with the Kitty and now it's time to pry the kid off the xbox. My bargain shopping partner in crime is back in town and we're heading out tomorrow for a day of hunting down some good deals. We need our rest.

Good night from the Chaos - where things are getting less and less chaotic (organizing-wise) daily.

Friday, September 25, 2009

You'd think I'd post more...

....being that I am unemployed and supposedly have nothing better to do...

Today I went into San Francisco to DSW warehouse and then on to Chinatown. A good walk about the City wandering in and out of various bathrooms and shops does one good.

Yes, I did buy shoes* and yes, I bought myself a small silk zipper pouch and a wee bit larger messenger bag at my fav shop in Chinatown, said hi to the giant wooden willie and then made my way home.

And now I'm sitting here in my new shoes ** (oooh they sure are comfy!) typing up a blog post. Cos I've got nothing better to do.

*No way in hell did I pay that much. I paid less than $40. What I REALLY want now are these. Can't wait til they hit the discount shops....


** I have a thing for born and boc shoes...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I'm obsessed (as Spencer always tells me)

Not only do I belong to the Book Swap Club, but I also joined its 2 sister sites....DVD Swap and CD swap.

With all this sorting and purging, I've come across a few DVDs and CDs that I just don't watch or listen to any more (some I didn't even remember I had!!). Up on their respective sites they went. I've sent out 7 of the 12 DVDs I listed and 1 of the 16 CDs I listed. Not bad. The best part of signing up for all 3? I can transfer credits between all 3 sites and use them for all books, all DVDs, or all CDs, or anything I want! Wahoo!

I'm finally getting some books sent to me off my wish list, so I'm very happy with the whole situation. I've also ordered a few CDs and am on waiting lists for several DVDs.

Spencer says our house is like a post office cos I'm always packing things up and sending them out and he's always ordering bike parts and I'm finally getting stuff in from my swap clubs.

Maybe I should get out my old uniform and do it up right!!! (I used to work for the Postal Service when I lived in Texas.)

These past few days I've been in a mood, which is hard to believe since I had such a good weekend and a great Monday! Lunch with AmpuT! We had a lovely lunch together chatting and catching up. She gifted me with some very funny toilet themed stitch markers and some gorgeous fiber - she's so sweet! Sorry, but I'm too lazy to take pictures, let alone post them. There are four markers tho: plunger, roll of toilet paper, toilet and pile of poo. Once I start using them, you will see them. Or maybe I'll take photos and post. Whichever comes first...don't hold your breath for either.

I haven't done ANYTHING fiber related all summer - and I haven't done anything jewelry or drawing related since those classes ended! Gah. I feel a creativity crisis looming - if I don't make something soon, I think I will explode! If the weather would just freakin' cool down, I'm sure I would get going doing something. Maybe that's why I can't sleep...it's all building up in my brain. I did however, dig out my turkish spindle and get going on some practice last night. I've got a few pretty batts now that I'd love to make into some usable yarn so I need to get going. I still suck, but with time, I KNOW I'll get better cos I just LOVE it and I won't have it any other way. :)

At least I've been keeping up with the sorting/purging bit. I've been managing to do at least 15-20 min worth every night since this weekend when I went all purge crazy on Saturday morning.

I've got a large shopping cart full of purses, clothes, misc crap, I mean useful items, that needs to go to the Thrift shop. Maybe I'll go tomorrow. Or Friday. Or maybe Saturday. Or all three if I purge enough the next two nights!!

More and more space is being freed up in the living area even tho there is still a row of boxes against the wall. I have vowed not to bring in any more stuff until it is all cleared out. And even then, I really don't think I'll want to bring in anything new. Honestly, I have enough stuff and really don't need more! Unless I find a job between now and then and get all that new furniture I want - but that only means the old furniture goes. One in, one out. :)

Enought chatter, it is time to watch "The Sarah Jane Chronicles". Disc 1, season 1 from Netflix. Pretty soon the last season of Dr. Who will be out and I'll be watching that!!! Maybe I'll do today's purging while I watch. Maybe not.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

It's so boring round here...

I'm keeping busy, but still....snoozeville!

I've gotten in the mood lately to do lots of sorting and clearing out and etc etc etc. The Chaos is becoming less chaotic by the day. There is still quite a bit to do, but I am making lots of progress going thru boxes and getting rid of stuff.

Spencer had a friend over this weekend, so even tho I did do a bit of work, I really couldn't do much. He is Spencer's Kublacon buddy and they were working on their armies. Every year they are the only two that have unpainted pieces in their armies. I somehow convinced them that they should meet once a month or so and just paint and practice strategies and stuff like that. They got quite a bit of painting done and even put some time in at the local game shop testing out some new strategies at the gaming tables. Spencer has just put away the final remains of all his paints, brushes, glue, bits, pieces and whatnot and the place looks halfway decent. Yay!

It's going to be pretty damn hot here for the next few days (100F +) and I am still in a purging/sorting/cleaning mood, so it is perfect! I wont' be wanting to go out in the heat and what else have I got to do round here? I am determined to have this all cleared out before the Holidays hit. Fingers crossed I can keep up with it!

Now to go wrap up some books for Book Swap. Two more go out in the mail tomorrow!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Kevlar Tyres* 6 - Evil Thorns 0

....just in case anyone was wondering....

And that storm that is not supposed to roll in until 1opm? I think it's going to hit a bit sooner. I was just out on Puff the Bike when the wind got stronger and the clouds got thicker, and a few drops fell. If the wind keeps up like this, it'll be here sooner than expected.

I'm home and chillaxin' with a book on the couch. Bring it Mother Nature!

*that's for you Honey, smooch!!

I like when the Angels bowl...

Anyone who lives in the SF Bay Area knows about the lightening and thunderstorm we had early Saturday morning.

I enjoyed it! One thing I miss about living in the Midwest (Chicago, then Texas) is the thunder and lightening.

When I was younger, I was frightened of it. Who wouldn't be as a young child? It's scary!

Mom and Dad explained away the thunder and lightening as Angels bowling. Close lightening and the consequently very loud thunder meant a STRIKE! I still managed to squeeze in their bed (like a chicken my sis would say) when a particularly bad storm would hit.

Anyway, as I grew older, I came to understand what lightening and thunder really were (thanks science and meteorology classes) and came to like hearing the rolling grumbles and the occasional flashes of light.

This past early (5:50am) Saturday, I was awake when it hit - my usual woke-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night-and-can't-fall-back-asleep scenario. I saw the flash first and thought a car was turning around in the parking lot outside my window. Then I heard the rumble...could it be? NO! YES! It was!!! Thunder.

Yay! I opened the living room curtains and sat on the couch for a while watching the lightening and listening to the thunder. Before long, I was feeling sleepy again...like a baby listening to a lullaby.

Off to bed I went and slept soundly for a few hours.

When I finally woke up, it was cloudy and raining. Ah sweet rain, how we need you. It probably wasn't enough to do much for the very dry conditions around here, but I'm sure it did a little bit of good.

Unfortunately, the lightening sparked a few fires out in the wilds, but according to the last news report I watched, they seem to have it under control.

Another storm is due in late tonight and is set to stay into the morning. I hope some thunder comes along with it. We rarely get lightening and thunder in the area here. I for one, welcome nature's noises.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Drive-by posting...

Still gettin' things done over here in the Chaos.

OMG...so who else is going to run off and make some of these?!?!?! I'm stopping on the way home to find something to put in them...either chocolate chips or blueberries or something otherwise yummy! Must. Make. Some...

Mom's recovery is coming along. Not only is she back to her normal self (as evidenced by some annoying parental habits), but the doctor even says she's healing well. :)

I finally remembered to ask Mom if she still had some old beads laying around the house. Sure enough, the old candy tin housing my Grandmothers glass seed beads is alive and well and soon to be on it's way to the Chaos. I used to "play" with those beads when I was little, pouring them out of their vials, putting them back in, arranging the little glass vials "just so" in the tin. Counting the strands on the tassels - that's how seed beads used to be sold, strung on cheap string and made into cute little bunches, or tassels as I called them. Well, the strings have long since deteriorated, it's a good thing I put the tassels into old film canisters. :)

Now that I sort of know what I'm doing, I'm going to try and make some jewelry out of these family antiques. I can't wait to see them again (the memories!). There will be photos as soon as my Mom and Sis find a good way to pack it all up and ship it safely.

I'm back in the saddle - have been bike riding Friday, Sunday and Monday! Today I rested as I've managed to get out of riding shape and am quite sore from the waist down. Tomorrow I go for a ride again. Yay!

My poor little kitty (my 16yr old fluffy white baby) was sick this morning...sure hope she's feeling better. Can't quite tell as she's been sleeping all day. Guess that's a good thing - since that is normally what she does anyway.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hello...are you still there?

Just a quick Mom update. She's recovering nicely. My sister says that she is bossing her around, so she's definitely feeling much better than procedure day. hee hee. That's it for Mom updates as they are quite boring and there's not really much I can say. Thanks to everyone for all their thoughts and well wishes!

I've been keeping busy. Yes Virginia, you can be unemployed and still be busy.

I miss my jewelry class. Sign-ups are on now for the Fall class, but I'm not going to do it. It's an extended version of the one I just took and it's during the day again. I'm being optimistic and saying I'll be busy working soon, so can't be playing at jewelry class on Friday afternoons. :)

No knitting lately. I've tried, but I just can't do it. Not only am I lacking in knitting mojo, but my wrist has decided to bother again (a cyst from the past has returned with a vengeance), and so I've replaced knitting and crocheting with reading and jewelry making. Now that Mom's on the mend, I just might drag myself into the doc's and see what they can do for my wrist.

I've also joined Paperbackswap.com...damn...it's like having a job! It's really cool tho, you join, post books you'd like to trade and then, well, start trading. For every book you mail off to another member, you get a credit. The credits can then be used to "order" books from other members. It's all quite addicting. I just joined up this past Thursday and have already sent off 12 books...with 8 more waiting for the appropriate approvals. Go check it out. If you decide to join, please put me in as a referral my swap id is ladilynn. The site also has two sister sites, one for CDs and one for DVDs.

After all the mailing I've done, I'm finally getting a book sent to me. WooHoo!!!! Unfortunately, most of the books I REALLY want have waiting lists. Oh well...

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Another Mom Update

The drugs have worn off and she's had her post-op exam. She doing much better than they thought she would be and she's pretty much back to her old self.

Thanks for thinking of her and please continue to do so - every bit helps. :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Mom Update...

Hello everyone,
Please keep my Mom in your thoughts, prayers and good vibes still.

It's all done and she's home (day surgery sort of thing), but things got a bit difficult and her recovery is going to be longer (and most likely more painful) than was originally thought.

She's not really down with that concept right now, but hopefully she'll get back her "I can do this" attitude once all the drugs wear off. The woman has survived Colon Cancer and has dealt with so much more - she can handle this one too.

I'll keep you guys posted as time goes by.

Thanks!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Another Request...and an Update

Hi everyone!
My Mom is having a procedure tomorrow. I won't go into details (she's a very private person), but if you could, please say prayers, light candles, send out good vibes or whatever it is you do to help her get thru it.

I'll let you know how it went later tomorrow.

Thanks!


Good vibes update!

My friend finally got the inspection he was hoping for on Monday ( I was there helping) and his new company passed the site visit. We've got some follow-up things to take care of (only 9 action items from a possible gazillion or so), but it's all good. He's very excited and wanted me to pass on his THANKS!!!!!! for thinking of him.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Busy doing nothing and something...

I've been doing stuff. When I'm not busy doing something, I'm busy doing nothing. hee hee

Every so often this summer, I've been helping out a friend who is starting up his own business. He's been at it since early this year and is still mired deep in red tape and gov't paperwork. It's been very frustrating for him since he can't really run his business without various and sundry certifications and licenses.

I've been helping him a lot this week as he prepares for an imminent inspection. Please send out happy thoughts, say prayers, light candles, put out good vibes to the universe, or whatever you feel comfortable doing to help him along.

This week is my last week of classes. I'm not so sad ending Drawing class as it was mainly Senior Social Hour every Tuesday morning. I did learn quite a lot, and will continue to draw and learn new things on my own.

I am very sad that this Friday is my last Jewelry Class and I am sad. I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE this class! I've learned SOOOOOOO much from this class. Now that I won't be going to class anymore, I'll have to start doing some fierce designing and construction and get some of this awesome cool stuff I've been doing up in my shop.

Promise to do more posting, I've just not been into any of it this month.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Just another lazy Sunday

Well, today didn't quite turn out as it was supposed to...pretty much the whole weekend went like that.

It's all been good, but I miss my friend who was supposed to ride her shiny new bike over to have turkey burgers with us. That's the only thing that was a downer. She's not feeling well and shouldn't be out riding, so we'll have to do it another day.

Spencer had a friend over for the entire weekend, so none of the food I bought will go to waste. As a matter of fact, they've just finished it all off and he's off to the bus stop and headed home.

I'm tired. I've been either shopping for food or cooking it. Don't know how you folks handle more than one kid, especially a teen. They are non-stop eating machines! Thank God for my dishwasher, it's run twice already.

I haven't done anything drawing-wise or jewelry-wise. I've been trying to get myself to work on my Stitches on the Bridge project that needs to be in Scotland soon. As some of you may recall, I made a grid of the Golden Gate Bridge and originally planned to do that in double-knitting. Well, that changed last night.

My left wrist is giving me some grief lately - actually a LOT of grief, so double-knitting isn't exactly the technique I should be doing right now. So I took apart what little I had done (trust me, it wasn't much...only about 6 inches of about 76 inches needed), and started over.

It's still a double-knitted pattern, but a much simpler one - a graphic - and it's going rather quickly and it doesn't aggravate the wrist.

Now, if I could only keep working on it. I seem to have a case of the snoozles...I'm so tired this past week, I've taken naps almost every day and not surprisingly, I've had troubles sleeping at night. It's a vicious cycle. I'm trying very hard to stay out of bed during the day today, so hopefully, I'll be able to sleep tonight.

Off to work on the scarf now...

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Black and White and hope you read it all over...

Hello everyone. Today I'm turning over the blog to some guest bloggers who will be making appearances every so often. All that excitement over bikes and tires and evil poking thorns has just worn me out. I need a rest.

And now, take it away guest bloggers!!!

Hello evriwone! My name is Ms Cow. My bestest frend Cow and I will be stepping in whenevr Donna gets too bizzy or lazy to blog. Today we are just going to tell a bit abowt ourselfes. I'll go ferst.



I live with Donna and Spensr in there howse in Kalifornia. My best frend Cow lives in Eenglind with her Honey. My othr frends are Kitty, Sock Munky, Marven the Dalek for skale and Sidney the knitted Dalek (he also livs with Honey and Cow very far aways). Cow and I haf desided that we haf a solushun for this far away stuffs. I am lerning how to drive and will drive across the U.S. to meet him when he sales over in his bote.

Here I am bukled in safe.



I likes to du many things but will safe that for othur posts.

And now it's Cow's tern:



Helo evribody. My nam is Cow and I liv in Inglund with Martin. My bestest frend is Ms Cow but she lives a long long way away with Donna so I hav maid a cuning plan. I hav desined a bote so I can sale acros the see. Martin has tort me som notts and I hav red a buk abowt saling and I hav bean lerning navygaiting with his gps. It is very esy cos you pres a buton to tell it were your going and it tells you were to turn left or rite and even wich rode your on. Heer is a pikchure of the bote



Martin ses we hav to maik a complykated pikchure cald a lines plan befor we maik the bote so I hav bean helping him do that. Wen he isn’t luking I maik it a bit bigger so ther is mor rum for Ms Cow to hav cow partys! But don’t tel him that or hell be cros.

My other frends are Soc Monkey, and Sidney and Marvin the daleks. Next time I will tell you mor abowt them, and abowt wen Martin and Donna took us on a ship, and we sat in the captens char.

Mooooooooooooo


Heer we ar togethr on a visit




(Editor's Note: The Cows didn't want me messing with their spelling this time out. I told them they really need to take advantage of the spell check function as I'm not going to spend all day correcting their spelling - I'm supposed to be on a break!!! We'll see how that works as they are both very stubborn.)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Kevlar Tires 1 Puncture Vine 0

So...Spence and I head out for our test drive. We rode about 6 minutes down the trail to a business park where Spence did some tricks and I just hung out while he did his thing.



Isn't she gorgeous?!?

Why, yes, she is...


On the way home, I picked up this in my front tire...



Son-of-a-bitch...I'm an evil thorn thingy magnet.

Tire held up tho! I'm so very happy. I panicked when I saw it, but I pulled it out, and new tire didn't even notice it. BOOYAH!

This one episode alone is worth the $80 I just spent today getting all this...3 months left of thorn season.... GO KEVLAR TIRES!!!!

Prepare for Battle! *

*Gandalf to the Gondorian Soldiers in LOTR Return of the King...

It begins... Spence and I take a trip to the bike shop.



Let's see what she bought....

Feelin' lucky punk? (from Dirty Harry)



Why, yes...with you on my bike, I do feel a bit luckier than before. Kevlar. Lined. Tires.

What's next...oooh...you need tubes to go in those tires girlfriend...will these do?



Read the box carefully...Thorn Resistant. Why yes, those will do nicely.

Here's what the thorn resistant tubes (left) look like compared to the regular tubes (right).



They are pretty much like a water hose. Why yes, those will be just fine. Thank you very muchly.

They are a bit bigger than my regular tires and Spence had to adjust my fenders. I'm sure glad I waited for his help.

They were also hard to get on and his muscles came in very handy. Here's Sgt Puff all kitted out and ready for battle.



No more wobbly tires - the original tires were very inexpensive tires that totally went wonky after all the on and off of these recent flat tire changing episodes. They did last a good 10 months tho, which is pretty good for the low end of the tire range. Stupid cheap showroom tires. No wonder I couldn't get them to sit right on the rims anymore - which is why they were wobbly and which is also why I haven't been riding my bike. Didn't want to take the chance of doing damage to the rims (expensive and time consuming to fix!) or any other part of my beautiful Bike.

Anyway, I've SOOOO missed riding my pretty blue bike. And I've been paranoid riding Honey's bike. Not only is it too big, but I was so afraid of getting flat tires! But ride it I did, and it was very awesome that we have it for an extra. I love his bike!

Spencer is changing the tire on his - he does a lot of skidding and so on with his fixed gear bike, so his tire issues are about running down the tread, not getting flat tires. BUT...I have convinced him that he needs to keep an extra tube, patch kit, and pump on him...just in case. Soon, we'll be ready for a test ride.

We'll be going off to the bike shop again after our test ride to get him an extra tube and a pump he can strap to his frame.

Punture Vine (tribulus terrestris)? I'm ready.

Just click on the link to read a bit about this non-native weed and to see photos of its thorny bits. Evil looking, aren't they?

If you walk, run, or ride on the trails around here, please be careful of these things, they are very sharp and I'm sure could hurt if they got in your shoes or on the paws of your puppy pals. We all know what they do to tires...sigh.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Rites of Passage...

Today has been a good day.

Spencer and I have entered into new phases of our lives.

He is with his Father in Texas visiting family. I got a mysterious text from Dad this morning to "Check your email. :)"

I open his email and what do I find? A photo of my son shaving. I won't post it here, even tho it is the most adorable photo of him I've seen in a long time. Although that statement alone is probably embarrassing enough. (My work is done.)

I cried when I saw it. And I've got a bit of welling up going on now as I type this too. Can't help it. The "growing up train" is charging full steam ahead. I can either jump on and enjoy the ride or stand by on the platform and watch it pass.

Wow, that was deep.

My friend Antonella was over today. Yes, I had a visitor in the Chaos. I haven't had anyone over to visit since Honey came over the winter Holidays. Spencer has had friends over and stuff, but I haven't had any visitors.

This is a big step for me. The place is still a wreck, but it was clean. As is the usual. I wish I had a magic storage closet. A closet where I could put all this stuff that came out of my old storage unit and the closet itself would just be a small space. Sigh. A Tardis of a closet if you will - "Bigger on the inside."

Anyway, I've accepted my Chaos. Not to say I won't still keep working on it, but I've accepted that I like company, and I really do like having friends over to visit. And that if I ever want friends over to visit before I'm too old to care, I need to accept that the Chaos is there and have friends over 'around' it, so to speak, until it is gone.

So, early this morning, I rode out to Antonella's place, where she was waiting with her shiny new bike, and we pedaled over to my place. I showed her how to navigate the trails, how to bypass the hills (that's important for a rider who needs to get used to her bike) and where to turn off for shops restaurants and what nots.

It was a wonderful ride and when we got to my place, I had my daily chat with Honey, we headed across the road for some groceries and I cooked up some home made turkey burgers.

It was a wonderful ride, visit and meal with my first visitor in too long.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

And again, nothing gets done...

I seem to be in a bit of a funk this week.

Don't feel like doing anything...and I haven't. It's a wonder I manage to feed the cat and myself these past few days.

I miss my son and his doses of happiness. This whole unemployed thing is very depressing, and Spencer coming here on my scheduled custody days always brings me back up and into reality and gives me something to look forward to. With him gone in Texas all week, its all moping, all the time, ever since he left. sigh.

I've fixed the back tire on my bike, but it still seems a bit off. Whatever, maybe I'll get around to working on it again to try and find/fix the problem, maybe I won't. I most likely won't.

I've decided to re-read Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince since I couldn't for the life of me remember what the hell happened in the damn book. At least I'm doing something.

I really should go outside and sit and draw and get some fresh air. Maybe even take out my jewelry supplies and work on re-doing those pieces that need fixing. I probably won't.

I'm going to go back to reading. In my quiet apartment, with the drapes all closed and the only company, the cat, who just doesn't give a flip what the hell I do as long as she gets fresh food and water every morning.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

yeah, whut-e-vah...

Yep, the bike is still in the hallway with a flat.

The jewelry still needs to be re-done.

There has been no drawing.

There has been no organizing.

There has been no cleaning.

I have yet to color my hair - and the grey roots are getting bad. I'm wearing hats to cover it - I NEVER wear hats.

It is now 10:30pm and I've just realized I didn't eat dinner. And it's not cos I was busy.

I did manage some laundry the other day, but only cos Spencer needed some clothes washed so he could pack them and I ran out of clean socks and undies. The whole "no more clean undies" is a great laundry motivator, isn't it?

I am a slug.

If only my brain could do physical labor, I wouldn't be one.

In my brain, I'm one very busy woman, getting all sorts of things done...a little crafting, cooking, cleaning, organizing tornado. Whirrrrrrrrrrr!!!!

Oh, and those gift cards? Gone.

Good to know I still have an imagination and despite my slugnicity, I can still shop.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Gah! Ack! Argh! and GRRRRRRRRRRR!

Today was Jewelry Class day. Yay!!!

We seem to have lost quite a few people, which is good because there were WAAYYY too many that first day. I am actually socializing and having a good time sharing tips and tricks with my fellow classmates. It's amazing how there can be just one design and 20 different interpretations! I love it!!! And I was actually able to contribute a tip of my own! Very fun.

I made a pretty necklace using some of the new curved metal beads and flexible wire I got from online - and used some really pretty green glass beads I've had forever. No two of the beads are alike, but they are all the same green. It is awesome...

...except...well...5 min after I finished, I broke the damn clasp. Gah.

...and while I was just inspecting it, I noticed that I left out a few essential spacer beads in the middle of it.

So...even if I hadn't broken the damn clasp, I would have had to redo it anyway. Oh, and I've decided it is a bit on the heavy side (large solid glass beads will do that) so while I have to take it all apart anyways...I'm going to switch out some of the main beads for some a bit smaller (and lighter).

Sigh.

Anyway, sometime this weekend I will redo it and I'll probably redo the bracelet I did in the first class - broke that clasp too. (Don't know what it is with me and breaking clasps!!!)

And I'll head out to the pool for some outdoor drawing. We are supposed to draw a tree for homework...and there is this really cool Weeping Willow just outside the pool area. It is half branches (no leaves) and half graceful (full leaves). Spence and I spotted it last night when we went out for a swim - we decided it is "Cool" and deserves to be drawn. :) It is right outside the covered table area which is perfect. I can go sit in the shade while I artificate.

Even tho I have to redo my jewelry projects, that is not what has me upset.

On the way to class, I got a flat tire!!! I was on the same path that gave me a flat tire on Saturday. Don't think I told you that...

First flat tire story....Spencer and I rode "the back path" all the way to a friends house this past Saturday. I call it the "back path" because it goes along the foothills back behind our complex. Anyway, cue fun and yummy dinner visit with friends, a ride home - in the rain!!!! - and I'm wiping down my bike when we get home and I spot something on my front tire. It looks like a tiny leaf, so I brush my fingers over it and PFFFFFFFFFFFT! Front tire goes flat. Somewhere along the "back path" I picked up some sort of VERY sharp spikey naturally occurring nasty thing. Sunday, Spencer and I are having to stop off at bike shop for repair kit and extra tubes. Tire is fixed Sunday night by yours truly, riding bike all this week, everything is hunky dory.

Good thing I got extras...

Today, I am riding "back path" to Jewelry class...I'm almost to the end of the path and PFFFFFFFFFTTTTTTTTTTT!!! Thwumpa thwumpa thwumpa...

ETA: It was the same spikey naturally occurring piece of tire death that got me the first time.

SHITTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!

I slam on brakes and hop off...back tire is flat as a pancake. SIGH! I am almost to the end of path and close to class - thankfully - so I walk rest of way to class. I'm sure I've totally shredded the tube from walking for about 10 min with a flat and then another ten min to the bus stop after class, but I didn't have my repair kit on me and really didn't want to sit in middle of path with no shade and do the whole 'repair and hope it works' thing even if I did. Back tires are not easy to change - especially when you've never done it before. :(

Now I'm sitting here looking at my poor bicycle with the flat back tire. Spencer is at his Dad's today and they are leaving at the ass crack of dawn tomorrow morning to catch their flight to Dallas - gone until the 26th. I've never taken off my back tire before and I'm not sure if I'll be able to do this on my own - all that gear stuff happening back there and all you know. But I will definitely give it a go - not afraid to try! Good thing we have Honey's Bike! If I can't get my wheel back on, I'll be riding that one for the next week until Spencer comes back from Texas. It's a bit big for me and there is no rack for my removable paniers, but I can deal. Will just need to take it easy and use a backpack.

Oh, and there will be no more riding on the 'back path'. I will, however ride back to the path "crossroads" and go to the right into Walnut Creek, but will not ever be going left again into Concord!!!! The trail towards Concord hates me and my pretty blue bike. Stupid trail!

I'll be taking the bus to Jewelry Class from now on. The bus schedule is a lot more agreeable in that direction, so it's no big deal. I'd rather ride my pretty bike, but no way am I taking her that way again. Such abuse she's taken from that trail. Both tires puntured in less than a week.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Happy Birthday to MEeeeeee - Now with edited updates!!!

Yes, today is my b-day. If you are keeping track, I'm 46 today. On the other side of "mid-40's" getting close to 50. Sigh.

Yeah, I have mixed feelings about today. Add to that the fact that the high temp will most likely be 100F and well, whatever. Birthday ennui.

ETA: Not sure if it got that hot, but for a while there this afternoon, it was pretty damn close while we walked about. Gah.

There are plans for the day...once they are started, I should feel better about things.

An online chat with Honey.

ETA: I misses you lots.

Lunch with Spencer at our favorite deli. Then on the bus and off to the movies for the matinee showing of the new Harry Potter movie. YAY!!!!

Either before or after the movie, it's a quick trip to the bead store to get some stuff for Friday's class. I don't think that the stuff I ordered online is going to make it in time. It took forever for my payment to clear the bank, so shipment was delayed. Stupid banking system! I only need a few curved tube beads and 30 inches of flexible wire. sigh.

ETA: My stuff showed up today! What a wonderful b-day surprise. The postman was delivering to the boxes as we were leaving and we just about tackled him looking for stuff (we're waiting for a few other things as well). Got my jewelry bits order and a few b-day cards!

There are cards...here's the one Honey sent me...hee hee hee

ETA: Selected by Cow - who thought I should get a cow card, but all he could find was sheep.



And gifts....when we renewed our cell phone family plan, we upgraded and Mom was kind enough to pony up the extra cash to get me this cool whiz bang phone. I've had it since May-ish and I absolutely love it! Thanks Mom!!!!

Others have been teasing me with "you have to wait til dinner to get your presents" (you evil person, you know who you are) and Spencer is on his way soon and says he has a card and gift for me. Going to open that one right away!

ETA: Evil person finally gave up the goods - some makeup goodies, a gift card, and a cute little polka dot bag which is already packed full of jewelry class supplies - you all know how I love my bags!!! Spencer gave me a gift certificate to the local art supply store! My friends and family know me way too well! I LOVE EVERYTHING!!!! THANKS A BUNCH!!!!

Drawing class was fun again...my classmates seem to have calmed down a bit and are now telling each other to shut up. I managed to snag a seat right up front so I could see and hear everything! Found out why after about 5 min into the class. Seems the a/c blows right on that spot and the one next to me - which happened to remain empty for the entire class. Several people sat there and as soon as the a/c came on again they went running for the hills complaining about bad nerves, this, that or the other malady that would act up if the a/c blew on them for 3 hours. Ahhh...peace and quiet!!! Guess that's my territory now! I especially enjoy the a/c blowing on me after a hot ride to class. heh heh heh

Yesterday, we did faces and then concentrated on eyes. That was really cool. Someday I promise to scan in my stuff as I've discovered I really CAN draw. I get that from my Dad. My drawings are not perfect, but that's ok, you can tell what they are supposed to be and my faces actually have features and don't just look like smiley faces. hee hee hee With practice I'll get better and better. I am SO GLAD I took this class!!!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Jewelry Class

OK, so we've got a class full of chattering and eating seniors for drawing...and an oversold class full for jewelry...the class was designed for 25 students and there are about 35-40 of us in the class. The teacher ran out of handouts, seats, you name it. I think the next 5 classes will be much better tho as she'll be much better prepared - and she's bringing more assistants to help her out. She only had one today.

But I still like both classes as I am learning quite a bit!

Today in Jewelry Class, I made a very pretty bracelet. I immediately came home and ordered the supplies from my fav online jewelry supply store for next week's class. What I don't use for class, I'll definitely use to make more pieces for my "jewelry collection" to sell online. I am glad that I don't have to buy any beads right now as I have quite the collection! Have all the tools I need as well. I have most of the findings I need, I just needed some clasps (as I have yet to make any bracelets or necklaces) and some stringing wire and some curved tube metal beads. Oh, is that all?!? hee hee. Actually, it's not that much at all. And I am uber excited to use some of my larger beads that aren't quite right for stitch markers or earrings. YAY!!!!

Time to do homework. This weekend I will do some drawing. For jewelry class, all I really need to do is go thru what I have now and break it down into a smaller kit for class - and then find something clever around here to put it all in that will survive an hour round trip on the bike. And then wait for my online order to arrive. YAY!!!!

I'm very excited to finally understand some techniques that I've known and read about but could not really get my head around. Seeing others do it and then trying it myself immediately after really helps.

And at some point this weekend, I will post a photo of the bracelet and scan in my first drawings. I was quite excited about it all and showed Spencer what I've done so far. He of course said it was all awesome...but he's biased...and was waiting on me to cook dinner...so he could have just been telling me that so he wouldn't starve! hahahahahahaha

In other news...I'm back on the creating wagon - and not just for class! I've finally picked up the knitting again and am working a little bit every night on the Stitches on the Bridge scarf I'm making. You know, the double knit scarf with a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge on it. Yeah, I frakking crazy!!!

And in the "awwwwwwwww" category...Sammie is sleeping on the bed with me again and sitting close by purring while I knit away. I can't tell you how happy I am about that. I've missed her so much!!!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Getting ready for Friday...

Last night, as I entered in months worth of bike rides and swimming to MapMyFitness.com, I remembered to check the trails and see what was available to get me across to the other side of town to my Jewelry Class on Friday. With all this entering, I still have a few weeks of entering to do...I REALLY need to keep up with that - gah.

Lo and behold...the trail that goes in that direction just happens to go *almost* right past the school where my Jewelry Class is!!! I can't even begin to tell you how excited I was to see that. Now I don't have to leave uber early to get there and then sit and wait for 45 min after class to catch the bus home. Stupid bus schedules totally suck when it comes to being convenient for anyone but the bus company. grrr.

Today I packed up Ms Cow and the bag of supplies I will be taking, along with my locks and cables and headed out to try out the route. Was mostly looking for how hilly it would be, as it goes round the foothills and even a part way up into them. I was also looking for a travel time.

I am happy to say that the trail is totally doable for me, some slight hills, but nothing I can't handle. The trail pops out at a main street that has a marked bike lane - one block later, I'm in the parking lot. Time? 25 minutes. Only 5 min longer than my trip to Drawing Class. This is indeed good news as I don't do well with hills - altho it would technically help me get better if I had to ride up one at least once a week. Oh darn. Another good thing about this route is that it's not all windy. Only the first part is windy, the rest is nice and calm. Heaven.

No bus! Hardly any wind! *Almost* door-to-door trail. YAYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!

I'm all set...just need to give Sgt Puff a mini-checkup and make sure she's all set. I've been riding her a lot lately. Think Spence and I should probably go back to the Bike Kitchen on Saturday and give her a really good look-see.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

About Balls....

Conversation in the elevator yesterday while going up to do laundry...

Little Girl: I like your balls lady!

Me: Why thank you!

Little Girls Mom: snicker snicker snicker snicker...

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Seen floating in the canal while riding the trail this morning...

  • One pink ball about the size of a basketball
  • 3 baseballs
  • One football

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Seen *on* the trail....3 piles of doggy poop

  • One very large as in "does a bear shit on the trail" large
  • One very small
  • And one very smooshed (luckily not by me)

(I know, I know, not technically balls...more like torpedoes...landmines...work with me here...had to tell about the poops!!!)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

For those looking for artsy type stuff...

First Drawing Class today...I LOVE IT! I am very glad I signed up for this class. Once I get past the fact that I'm the youngest person in the class...it's not so bad!

Today we learned about the basic shapes used in drawing and about highlighting and shadowing. Someday when I get over being a lazy ass, I'll post a scan of some of my work. I'm doing pretty good for a beginner, even if I do say so myself. hee hee

Oh, and I TOTALLY love that I can ride from door to door and lock up my bike right outside the classroom door. Really wish it wasn't so windy sometimes, but it does give me a good workout!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Drawing Class tomorrow!!!

YAY!!!

I'm hoping to have a fun time with the class and not sit there like a bump on a log.

The two, giant, tunisian crocheted blankets have not done their job. I am still blocked.

I have figured out that there are many reasons why:

1. I've been very lazy. Very easy to be very lazy when you don't have to get up and go someplace where people have promised to pay you if you show up and do stuff.

2. My apt is a chaotic mess. Result of the laziness, of course. I have promised myself today is chore day - going to get all the basic stuff done, pack for class and then work a bit more on getting my crafting supplies in order. Ooooh...it's lunch time! Chores will have to wait - can't do chores if I'm hungry!

3. I have no idea where to even begin being creative. I have many lists of ideas. I have many ideas in my head. I look at the lists and it's as if they are in a foreign language. I go to pull ideas out of my head and they are no longer there...they return when I decide to leave them alone.

4. I'm feeling rather lonely lately. Lonely equals woe-is-me, pity parties that totally block out any desire to do anything but park my ass on the couch and watch nonsense on TV. Which then ends up with me in bed with a book or magazine cos there is nothing but crap on TV. And then I can't even concentrate on what I'm reading.

I do get out with my friend Antonella, I chat daily with my Honey, Spence and I spend lots of quality time together when we get the chance, I still call the family and chit chat, and I have actually been dragging my ass out on the bike and have been swimming once. My blood pressure is down and so is my weight - 4 more lbs actually.

I should be happy. I think about it all and go "meh - whatever".

Trying not to put too many high hopes on these classes I'm taking and I think I'm doing pretty good with that. Stepping out of my creative box with the drawing is something different which I think I will really enjoy. The jewelry class can only help me as I have had lots of ideas for new pieces but I have no idea how to bring them into reality.

The classes are what they are and my chaos is what it is...hopefully being in contact with more people will get me back to whatever it is I was before I lost my job - ironically, I don't even know what that is, really.

Meh - whatever!