Tuesday, August 24, 2010

BEST FRIEND WEEKEND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This was a big weekend. I went to Las Vegas to spend the weekend with my best friend for her birthday (she lives there, we weren’t whooping it up casino style) and the hubz was home alone with the girlies.

It all started on Friday…

First it was super hero day at the girls' school. You know we had to work that!

Then best friend arrived at my house after an audition (hope she gets the part cuz then she would be here for a month). We had a lovely hot dog dinner and then made smores. Smores can be very (VERY) messy. But they are so delicious. This may be my favorite dessert.

Saturday morning we got out on the road and headed off to Vegas. We spent the day hanging out and playing with Ali’s new baby, Emerson.

We stayed up way too late making homemade cinnamon/honey marshmallows and then crashed in a puddle of our own drool after eating too many of them.

On Sunday, I got to see Ali in her fabulous cabaret show that she performs at the Liberace Museum every Sunday. Not only was her show lots of fun, but I got to spend some time being hypnotized by the mirrored and sequined fabulosity of about a gilliion Liberace costumes. Here are my favorites (and yes, I am wearing Emerson in these pictures):

The red one is called the Lasagna suit. Oh that Liberace, he was a cut up.

Sunday night, we commenced to making the “free dummy”

If this was a movie, I would put a montage here, but since it is a blog, you just get this:

Et Voila! Duct tape dress form double of moi!

Just think of the sewing creations that will hang upon her limbless frame.

Free dummy was completed around 2am and by that point everything in the world was funny to me.

Woke up on Monday to celebrate my darling best friend’s birthday. We had brunch and then went to TWO different cupcake places so we could compare and contrast. One knife, three plates and six cupcakes later, we were a bit more educated on the Las Vegas cupcake scene. MMMMMM…..

Then we got on the road and made it home by around 10pm (Ali had a call back so we got to ride together round trip). Miss Z was still awake and gave me about the best hug ever. I tried to tell Ali the entire story of Lost (except most of the last season that I haven’t seen yet) on our way home. That is not your average bedtime story. But we managed. We did stop up to the Long John Silvers on the way in and snapped this photo (thank you scary man).

Back to the grind but refreshed from a weekend away.

And may I send out super props to the hubz. Not only did he have the girls all by himself all weekend, but he dressed them for church and got there early on Sunday, he got them ready for school on Monday, took them out to a restaurant (BY HIMSELF) on Monday night (something even I wouldn’t brave) and got them bathed and in pj’s before I made it home. He is my hero. Love that guy.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

101 list update

For those of you who do not regularly scroll back to my very first blog, I thought I would give an update on how much of the list has been accomplished. I have not marked items I have changed, but feel free t0 cross reference with your memories (And the stuff that has been done is in yellow).

  1. Learn to fold a fitted sheet
  2. Write a letter to a politician about something I care about
  3. Make a chocolate soufflé from scratch
  4. Plant tomatoes in my yard and not let them die
  5. Start composting
  6. Learn to make something origami
  7. Read the Constitution
  8. Learn all of the lyrics to “The End of the World as We Know It” by REM and be able to sing it without looking
  9. Learn to make one of those connected paper doll things you can stretch out
  10. Learn to tie at least 2 real knots
  11. Do the New York Times crossword (even if I have to cheat)
  12. Get one of those funny pictures made where you dress up like cowboys and saloon girls
  13. try Ethiopian food
  14. memorize a Bible verse besides John 3:16
  15. watch Harold & Maude
  16. read To Kill a Mockingbird
  17. Learn to make frosting flowers
  18. make peanut brittle
  19. Learn to use a compass
  20. re-learn all the state capitals and mountain ranges in the U.S.
  21. watch a sunrise from my back porch
  22. go one whole day with no nagging, judging or ordering my husband
  23. have a dinner party with ridiculous 1950’s housewife food (even if the only person I invite is my friend Todd).
  24. re-learn how to multiply and divide fractions
  25. learn to play a song on the ukelele
  26. memorize the Ten Commandments
  27. Buy all produce for one week at the farmer’s market
  28. drink 8 full 8 oz. glasses of water in one day
  29. learn to tie a tie
  30. make my own laundry soap
  31. try goat milk
  32. join an “of the month” club
  33. finish my craft area
  34. make funnel cake
  35. get a fire extinguisher
  36. learn to convert Celsius and farenheit
  37. do a grammar review
  38. learn about blood pressure so I know what it means when they tell me what it is at the dr.’s office
  39. read up on how many servings of each food group we are supposed to have each day and do exactly that one day
  40. find out how much cholesterol, fat, sodium we are supposed to have in a day and compare with what I actually ate
  41. make ketchup from scratch
  42. Build up a pantry storage of food
  43. learn to cut a snowflake
  44. take a bubble bath
  45. make butter
  46. wear dresses for a whole week
  47. take the money I was going to spend on something I wanted and put it in a jar for 2 weeks. Then give that money to a charity.
  48. mail someone an unexpected and fun package
  49. make smores
  50. learn all the birthstones
  51. research what stars are in the sky and find them one night
  52. pickle something
  53. play jacks
  54. make up a new cookie recipe (at least try)
  55. make a melon basket
  56. join NPR
  57. meditate for one hour
  58. get dual citizenship for me and my girls
  59. roller skate in my driveway (if I can find my skates…59b. find skates)
  60. try to figure out exactly what inflation is/means
  61. make fruit loop necklaces with my daughter Zelda
  62. write a haiku about bacon
  63. take a cool family portrait
  64. make a blanket fort with my kids
  65. go to See’s Candy and handpick a box of chocolates for myself
  66. learn all the countries in Europe
  67. enter a recipe contest
  68. develop the perfect burger
  69. write down my 20 favorite things about my husband
  70. make a list of my top 50 songs
  71. eliminate paper towel use at home (except for extremely disgusting, must throw away immediately or burn the item afterwards messes)
  72. Go on a picnic
  73. write all the lyrics to the vegetarian cowboy song
  74. sew a piece of clothing entirely by hand (no sewing machine)
  75. call a friend I never talk to
  76. make homemade ice cream with no ice cream maker
  77. put up a clothes line
  78. find my dream coat
  79. go to bed by 10pm for one week
  80. get up at 6am for one week
  81. buy some clip on hair extensions
  82. make reusable sandwich/snack bags
  83. see two movies in one day
  84. go on a weekend vacation to a place I have never been
  85. read a Pulitzer prize winning play
  86. learn to build a fire
  87. buy stock in a company that is developing the fuel made by algae
  88. take no waste/trash lunches to work for one week
  89. wear red lipstick for a week
  90. put $2 in a jar every time I finish one of these things and spend my $202 on something frivolous
  91. have a murder mystery party
  92. be able to do a somewhat successful Texas “T” cheerleader jump
  93. get a bikini wax
  94. make tamales from scratch
  95. watch someone else’s favorite movie
  96. watch a whole movie on the phone with my best friend
  97. make homeade soft pretzels
  98. read a biography/autobiography
  99. Learn some string tricks like that cat in a cradle thing
  100. make caramel apples
  101. Learn all of the supreme court justices and what they stand for
I do think I will not accomplish all of this in 365 days, but I am having a lot of fun blogging and crossing things off of my list.

Get inspired!

Camp Taba-wana-hoo

This weekend we went on a camping trip with our church at the Lake Cachuma recreation area. It was soooooo fun! We got a bit of a late start on Friday because I had to work till 3pm and then the traffic was butterific, but we made it there by sometime after 7pm and still had enough light to get the tent set up.

It was very cold in the mornings and once the sun went down, so I was happy I brought plenty of blankets and jackets for the fam. The days were scorching hot, so I was also glad I brought the sunscreen.

This is our tent. It is a 5-man tent that I purchased in 1996. I was certain I was going to be a camping diva. This camping trip marks the first time the tent was actually used by me for camping. It has gone camping with my friends, but never with me. Some camping diva I turned out to be. But I am really excited to camp out again. I wish I had taken a picture of our van. It was stuffed to the gills! In the end, we actually used everything, except we brought too much food, but one of my diseases is worrying that there won’t be enough food. My mother is convinced everyone will suffocate and so we always had to sleep with a fan and the door open. I just worry everyone will starve (you should see the amount of snacks I take on an airplane).

Luckily, many of my other church members are avid campers and so we had fire and shade and all the other things that make camping nice. There were bathrooms and showers nearby, but with such a wonderful excuse not to bathe, I didn’t bother. We brought Miss Z's training potty for nighttime. It was too cold to leave the tent, so I didn’t mind the ridiculousness of a tiny toilet.

Of course there were smores and hot dogs and snacks and all the other stuff you have to have when you go out into the wilderness. Several of our fellow campers were in some pretty tricked out RV’s and so the lucky little guys got to get out of the cold and watch some Barbie movies on DVD at night (is that cheating?).

The only thing we forgot were the pillows. You can see in this picture that the hubz resorted to sleeping on a crushed roll of paper towels.

When we got home, we were about as dirty as you can possibly be-covered from head to toe in dust and probably smelling a little bbq’d to boot from time around the campfire.

Now I am plotting our next camping adventure but on our own. Uncle Tim will have to teach us how to build a fire. I added it to the 101 list.

See the great outdoors. The stars alone will take your breath away.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I am soooo intellectual

I joined NPR. To be exact, I became a member of KCRW.

I listen to my local public radio station all of the time. It is a mix of interesting stories, news that makes me a smarty pants without me having to see actual carnage and music that I would never otherwise hear (because I don't go looking for new music, it has to find me- I am stuck in the past).

I feel so very active in a communal sort of way.

As soon as I get all my pics loaded up, I will do a post on my FARBULOUS (I say it that way, it is not a spelling error) camping trip this weekend.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Wanna hear something horrifying?

What you are looking at is a modern art installation created by my daughters. I would like to think it is their statement about the mundane, everyday world we live in, or perhaps some kind of protest against the amount of diapers we litter the earth with. I know my statement when I saw it was something along the lines of, "What the heck is this? GIRLS!!??"

But that is not what is horrifying. What is horrifying is...

You can get an ulcer on your eyeball. That’s right…ON your eyeball. I know this because my husband has one on his. What we thought was a sty gone horribly wrong, turned out to be an ulcer that came within a bazillionth or something of permanently impairing his vision. The doctor thinks it was caused by sleeping in his contacts. He wears the kind that you are supposed to be able to sleep in, but apparently his eyes said NO and that was that. Now after more than $100 on antibiotics, whatever we have to pay for the dr. visits and eye exams and more than $250 spent on a pair of prescription sunglasses (husband can’t wear contacts for now and hates how he looks in his coke-bottle prescription glasses) that he will apparently only wear for as long as he has to (who says women are the vain ones?) he is feeling better. I am happy he is not in pain and I am annoyed at eyeballs that are so darn precious that they just can’t do what they are supposed to. BAH.

We spent most of Saturday dealing with the eyeball.

As to Sunday…

Small but lovely harvest (I already et the maters and didn’t share)

Grape jelly from the previous grape harvest (husband is suspicious and says it looks like beans. He ate his toast with butter this morning).

Birthday chocolate chip cookies for Uncle Tim (a special request he made to Miss Z. She helped a lot).

Cute girls on computers (ahh the age of technology).

And that is about the long and the short of it. Except that the fonts are all squirelly cuz blogspot is acting a fool on me.

Take time to enjoy the summeryness of Summer.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Grapes and circles

This weekend was full. We had a funeral and a birthday party in one day on Saturday, so that was kind of a “circle of life” day. No sewing and no baking. Saturday was very full with the life circling and I am back to trying to observe the Sabbath with rest again. I have now memorized the Ten Commandments (one of the things on the list) and I either forgot or didn’t know that observing the Sabbath is actually a commandment. I took a nap, we spent some time outside and took a walk together as a family after dinner. Once we got home, I couldn’t take it anymore and I commenced to folding clothes, but I was really good the rest of the day.

The Ten Commandments (for those of you that don’t know)

1 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.
*not a problem, got that…

2 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My Commandments.
* no idols, don’t even watch American Idol.

3 “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
* I work really hard on this one. It mostly comes out in times of fear or anger (aka- when I am in the car)

4 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
* really have to work on this one and I did NOT know this was a commandment.

5 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
* I try. I guess you would have to ask them.

6 “You shall not murder.
7 “You shall not commit adultery.
8 “You shall not steal.
* I guess most people consider these the 3 biggies and so do I. But I also think for many people (including myself) that makes them easy to keep. They all involve hurting another human being and I try to live my life in a way that inflicts the least damage on the bodies and souls of everyone (not just people I know).

9 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
* Hate lying. Once I got past the pesky teenage habit of trying to be sneaky, there hasn’t been another need for it in all of my days (with the exception of the occasional gift related surprise lying or the “of course it was great/you look lovely/nice nice blah blah kind of lying).

10 “You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anythin
g that is your neighbor's.”
*In general, I don’t do a lot of donkey coveting. But I have very much been known to covet shoes, clothes, lifestyles, leisure time, etc. Working on that too.

Now the big surprise of the weekend was the grape harvest.

Can you believe it? I feel like a Gallo brother or something. I had given up on this vine. It was a bit puny when we moved in and I kept thinking that it would just die. We didn’t trellis it so it has become this behemoth ground cover. On Sunday I started poking around and boy howdy! Do we ever have grapes. The hubz and I decided that “ground grapes” must be the most brilliant and underutilized way of cultivating a grape harvest ever created. We will be eating grapes a lot in the coming days. I think grape jelly will be in order as well.

Peace and love