Monday, May 30, 2011

Gardening Update

I ran outside today while the sun was out for a minute (dang this crappy weather!) and dug the weeds/grass out of one more bed, in the back yard, next to our sad little Model T era garage.  I planted the rest of our annuals (some pretty geraniums and petunias) and stuck the rest of our vegie starts in between.  We still had a few little carrots and I think green peppers, so we'll see how they do.

Katie and I must be the world's only beings who FAILED at growing sunflowers.  Seriously, I'm pretty sure chimps can get these to grow, but our starts totes crapped out.  Happy news is that we have 4 potato plants poking out from our Garbage Can Potato Farm!

Lucy has discovered the compost bin, AKA the Woolworth Lunch Counter for Dogs.  Weirdo, there's only rotting veg in there plus dirt and grass clippings, but she seems to think it's Granny's Buffet.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

In Spokane, People!!!

"A Spokane woman out for a day hike along the Spokane river claims to have proof of the mysterious and elusive Bigfoot.

Samantha, who did not give her last name, and her friends were hiking at Downriver Park over the weekend when they captured Bigfoot by using their iPhone camera."

Um, I hike here all the time (well, I used to before I got fat), and I never got lucky enough to see Bigfoot.  A mean Park Ranger giving tickets for not having a dog on its leash, sure, but no hairy creatures.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Where's My Cow? Without the Cow

I finished the little "mystery knitalong" onesie for Pia's friend's new baby girl.  Sammy Jo (her name is Samantha Jane but to me, she will always be Sammy Jo Carrington from "Dynasty".  Heather Locklear rules.) 

There are still lots of ends to weave in and buttons to sew on (presh orange polka dot buttons), but Pia is going to do that part on her way to Portland to meet SJ.  There is supposed to be an embroidered cow on the front, but we both think it's a giant fugly cow head (it looks like Elsie the Cow from the old Borden ads), so we decided to leave that off.

Get piccies of little Sammy Jo Carrington Larrat in her new onesie, P!

Grand Rapids!

Cara and Tony are pondering a move to Grand Rapids, MI.  Evidently Newsweek claimed that GR was "dead", so the citizens created this awsome video:

If this doesn't convince them to make the move to Michigan, nothing will :-)

A Night at the Movies

Katie was a super good sport and went with me to a movie of my choice: "Cave of Forgotten Dreams".  I'm still reeling from the fact that it costs $13.00 to see a movie, but Katie pointed out that it did include the 3-D glasses.

For once, 3-D was justified in a movie.  This film is about the Chauvet Cave in France, where 3 explorers discovered undisturbed 30,000 year old cave drawings.  The filmmakers were allowed access to the cave for a week (access is very limited due to the fragile nature of the drawings), and they did a beautiful job of filming these fantastic Paleolithic artworks.

The postscript was weird, with albino alligators (super creepy), but otherwise I really enjoyed the movie.  Katie may have gotten more prehistoric art than she really wanted, and was the youngest person at the movie by about 40 years, but she was good-natured about it all.

WAY better than that Jean Auel book, Zaide!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

This Show Makes Me Want to Hit Someone

Katie has the day off today, which mean Lulu and I are subjected to some really craptastic TV shows.  We prefer to spend our days viewing PBS and The History Channel.

"Pregnant in Heels" is on right now, and I seriously want to lash out and beat someone.  The expectant couples on this show could NOT be more vapid, self-absorbed, selfish and stupid if they tried.  The "host" (Rosie Pope over there) has either a speech impediment or the WORST ACCENT ever heard on the Planet Earth.  If I hear her say "Ba-beh" one more time, I don't know what I'm going to do.  But it won't be pretty.  Beware, Katie.

A Cheerful Little Sweater

I just sewed on the button on my new cute cardigan (Adeline) and I love it.  Though I don't as yet have a cute summer dress to wear with it.  I love the cheerful tangerine color, for some reason I love orange right now.  And it was fast and easy to knit. 

Monday, May 23, 2011


"Triple-Topsy-Turvys"!  We now have 3 TT planters: strawberries, tomato and hummingbird flowers.  Yeah, they are kind of cheesy looking, but I love them anyway (or maybe because of).  Our strawberry plants are already looking WAY better than the plants we put in the ground, so we have high hopes.

A Book Review for Zaide (Too Late)

The B called me today (she was stuck in traffic), to tell me how terrible the latest Jean Auel book was.  LOL Zaids.  I already read it, and I pretty much agree it's not her best.  But I didn't want to be the only one to shell out the bucks for it. 

Warning: there are the usual assortment of "throbbing members" and "furry mounds" in this book, plus an interminable number of visits to painted caves and also the poem that never ends.  Now, I am very interested in prehistoric cave paintings (in fact, I'm planning to see "Cave of Forgotten Dreams" this week), but there were about 30 too many caves in this book. And that Jondalar is a real hound.

There's my review, Zaids.  Only 10 years till the next installment in the series!

A New Hobby

For Katie, that is.  I will be knitting for the rest of my life to use up the yarn I already own. Thank goodness the rapture didn't happen Saturday, I have a lot more knitting to do (well, I guess I wasn't in any danger of being "raptured" so never mind)

Judy has two spinning wheels (one to borrow, one she says we can have), and I'm going to grab them!  In exchange, I'm going to spend a weekend helping her pack for her upcoming move to E-burg.  And I'm bringing Katie and Lulu along to help.

Can't wait, it'll be like an episode of Hoarders come to life!!!  I figure there's all kinds of hidden treasures in those rooms...

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Gardening, Yay!

Pia and I made a trip to the nursery and bought some flowers for our sad little beds:

I know this doesn't look impressive, but believe me, it's a huge improvement over the weeds!  I also got a tomato and some hummingbird-friendly plants for our Topsy Turvy planters.  Plus this tool:

A pitchfork for my compost bin!  I feel so garden-y!  Now if we just get more than 2 days of sunshine, stuff might grow...

Thursday, May 19, 2011


We are anxiously waiting to hear if Cara and Tony are heading to Michigan!  Carquest is dying to have Car take over one of their territories based in Grand Rapids.  She visited last week, and wasn't totally impressed ("it's like all of your stores are in Ritzville"-- not a compliment).  Pooh is part of the package deal, as our little Car-Car isn't about to head to Midwest America all by herself.

She was writing up her terms today (hopefully, they included demands for a gazillion dollars, a lakefront mansion, household staff and 30 weeks of vacation a year), and we are on pins and needles.

It's not exactly a win in our "Get Them Back to Spokane" campaign, but at least it's a westward step in the right direction.  And who knows, maybe they need a live-in housekeeper...

Why Ya Gotta Be So Mean?

Just a small rant, you will understand :-)

Why do people have to be a-holes?  I saw a knitting book and some yarn on Ravelry that I liked.  Didn't need it, but had a little extra moolah, so I bought it from a fellow Raveler.  I paid VERY promptly, $60.00, which isn't chicken feed (to me anyways).  It's now been THREE WEEKS, and I still haven't received the package.  I was getting a bit concerned, so I emailed the seller, nicely asking how much longer I thought it might take for her to mail it.  Here's her reply:

"Next time order from a yarn store where you're assured of customer service. I was clear in my original thread that mailing packages was not a priority for me given I'm in court almost all week and when I'm not in court I'm in arbitrations so if that was an issue for anyone, I'm not the gal for you.  *shrug*"

What a c*nt.  Really?  Not a priority?  Taking my money WAS a priority, just not sending me what I paid for.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Viva Las Vegas!

Pia, Katie and I are home from our fab Las Vegas weekend!  This was my first time experiencing the "only in America" wonder that is Vegas. We met up with some of her friends and the Virginians (yay!) for a long weekend of all the stuff you do when you go to Vegas:

We stayed at the Paris Hotel/Casino, which was very nice.  We hung out at the pool one day, where I burned the right side of my body due to my refusal to turn around/over.  It's turning to tan though.

People-watching is the BEST activity.  You have not SEEN sequins, glitter, cleavage, high heels and skirts that barely cover the crotchular area until you've spent some time here.  We saw some epic mullets, clothing that I thought didn't exist outside of Frederick's of Hollywood, more silicone boobs than I could count, and much more.  So much fun!

Gambling!  I've always avoided the casinos here, figuring it might be an activity I'd like just a bit too much.  I was probably right in thinking that.  Cara supplied me with plenty of money to fuel the slots, and a few lessons on how to play after I told her I didn't know if I was winning -- the slot machines "baffled" me.  We spent about 12 hours at one bank of slots as Car went on an epic winning spree; she ended up winning about 1300 bucks on a 40 starting pot.  Well, as you can imagine, it was all Eiffel Tower cocktails after that:

I required ice packs and carpal tunnel wrist splints after my epic day hitting the "bet again" button on my chosen slot machine.  But it was a lot of fun.  Tony brought along his friend Alex, who was a good addition to the gang.  He placed a couple of winning sports bets, but threatened to blow it all by betting on the Mariners (pretty sure he was just kidding).  Katie's bestie from school days Sarah joined us for 24 hours and she was def. the life of the party.  Thanks to Skokie, we learned that you cannot say The F Word in any casino.  You can use any other swear word you want, you can dress like a hooker or get drunk as a skunk, but no F Word.  F-ing weird.

Since we were there to celebrate Katie's 30th birthday, a show was on the agenda.  Patty (big Tony's fabulous spouse, she's great) had been to several of the Cirque du Soleil shows and recommended "Zumanity", so we headed over to New York New York to the show:

Um, Patty?  Love you doll, but this show was kind of horrifying.  Billed as "the sensual side of Cirque Du Soleil", this one would be great for bachelorette parties.  For parents/kids attending together?  Not so much.  I realized we might be in for a bit of an uncomfortable evening when our usherette was wearing an assless dress :-)  The acrobatics were cool, though (if you ignored the t&a and the orgasmic moans and groans) and there was a lot of funny interaction with audience members, who were super good sports.  And the drag queen Mistress of Ceremonies was great.

All in all, a very fun weekend hanging out with the people I love to hang out with best.  We're already planning our next adventure.  Rumor has it we'll be in the Dominican Republic for Thanksgiving.  Can't wait!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Getting Creative in the Kitchen

I'm faced with a giant box of fresh organic produce every week.  Which means I have to cook, not my favorite thing.  But I'm trying to be good about using up what's in the box, which varies from week to week.

This week, we got 2 stalks of rhubarb and a small box of strawberries (which were so delicious!)  I didn't have enough of either to make a pie, so opted for strawberry-rhubarb crisp, and added an apple to make enough to fill a smallish baking pan.  Topped with organic oatmeal/flour/stick of butter and cinnamon.  YUM.  It was delicious!  And tasted even better for breakfast this morning.

At Last!

The sun is out!  It's supposed to be 72 degrees today!  Spring has sprung!

Lucy and I are pumped!  We have been working in the yard (me composting, weeding and etc; Lulu digging holes and pooping).  It's so pleasant outside, I hope this nice weather sticks around for a while.

Last night, Katie and I planted our bean starts, and did some more fine-tuning of our terrible sprinkler system.  We are determined to be farmer girls this summer.  Even if the weather has refused to cooperate so far.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

And One More Mother's Day Picture

This was from my "Afro" hair days :-)  And my really giant glasses days. Note that I am knitting.  Some things never change, do they?  And that is Pia, wearing an Aran sweater I knit (I think, it may be a hand-me-down that Susna knit for her girls).  Don't know what to tell you about those curtains.  They are fug. 


My favorite thing in the world is being a Mom (even more favorite than knitting and that is saying something!)  As I've mentioned a time or two, my kids are the planet's -- no, the universe's -- most fabulous life forms. 

I also have a wonderful Mom, who is 87 this year (or 85, or 79, depending on the day and which birthdate she's choosing to acknowledge).  She's a feisty little lady, all 90 lbs (and shrinking) of her.  I have so many great memories of Mom:

  • Enjoying a pitcher of martinis with Dad after work
  • Being the world's greatest pie maker, plus having the PERFECT recipes for mac and cheese and scalloped potatoes.
  • A stylish gal.  I LOVED rummaging through her drawers of hankies, gloves, her jewelry (especially her charm bracelets), her boxes of high heels with matching purses, her HATS.  
  • She was so creative!  She made fabulous Christmas ornaments and gifts, knitted like a dream (I love it when I come across a vintage knitting pattern that I remember her knitting), sewed and painted and all kinds of crafty stuff
  • She would make personalized gingerbread men for everyone in the family, the neighborhood and maybe the entire town of Bothell every year.  And hung them on the beams in our family room
  • Brought us a new sibling (usually a sister) nearly every year.  Most of them we liked, but we were all a little peeved when Jamie Claire arrived only 11 months after Lisa.  We weren't ready for a new baby, so we tortured poor Jamie mercilessly.  It didn't help matters that Claire was terrified of everything. Though now that I think of it, being tortured probably CREATED the terror.  Sorry, J.
  • Hosted grown-up parties all the time (or at least it seemed that way)
And so much more.  Here are some pix of Lois and the family:

 Mom and I at Toddie & Baba's House in the early 70s.  God I was young...and she is stylish in her shift + cocktail  PS.  I worship that pinecone wallpaper
I've posted this photo before, but it's one of my favorites.  Again, the family is gathered at Toddie & Baba's house.  Mom looks very 1958 in her cotton dress and pointy bra.  And I obviously picked up my current dressing habits early.  That's me in the sloppy capris.  I pretty much dress exactly the same now.

Here we are at Christmas in probably 1956 or so.  Mom is holding a gingerbread house (don't think she made it, T & B usually brought one at Xmas)  And for once I look cute in a DRESS

Mom doesn't use the computer any more, but maybe one of my sibs can pull this up and show her these pictures.  Maybe she will remember.  Maybe not.  But it sure makes me happy to look at them.  And think of my Mom.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mother's Day (1988)

And the inside of the card says:

"My Mom:
I Love Her -- she gives me allowance and I go shopping with her!"

I Love You (with a backwards Y"

Thanks Tonsy, I love you too!  You also rode your bike with me when I jogged, and commented about how my legs jiggled. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Little Lulu

I whipped up this "Little Lulu" knit doggie for Katie's birthday (plus got her an "I Love Lucy!" mug with a bunch of pix of her favorite gal), which I think turned out pretty cute.  She needs to take it to work, so she can gaze at her little girl all day long.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Happy Birthday, Katie!

Today is a special day!  Katie, my baby girl, turns 30!

Folks, I'm a lucky mom.  I have four fabulous children, all of whom I'd do anything for (and vice versa, as they've shown time and again).  And this little girl is a dream.

When she was born, with a full head of curly hair and two big dimples, perfectly beautiful in every way, I fell in love.  She was the BEST BABY EVER: slept all night from age 6 weeks, with a schedule that went like this:

up at around 7:30, nap at 10:00, nap at 1:00, to bed at 7:00, sleep all night.  In between all that sleeping, she was happy to play with her big sisters, play with her toys, or just observe the world around her.  No fuss, no muss.  She was a blankie and thumb sucking girl.  She still has blanks.  Maybe still sucks her thumb for all we know.

She loved fancy dresses and shoes (a trait that continues to this day), dolls of all kinds, riding her "Chubby Chopper" around the neighborhood, and tagging along with the big kids.  She talked early and often :-)  Preschool was so much fun, with lots of friends and activities.  Once I asked her, "Do you have a piano in your class?"  and she replied, "No, but I have a Michael in my class!"  Always the joker.

She had a few "hair-raising" adventures: once Cara cut her beautiful long hair to the scalp in the back, then had her wear a hood all day so that Mom wouldn't notice.  Thus the pixie cut was introduced into Katie's life.  When she was a toddler, I LOST her one day after picking up the kids from school.  I was in a total panic searching the neighborhood for her, but no one had seen her. I called 911 in hysterics, and the kind operator suggested I go check the car.  Sure enough, she was sound asleep on the floor of the station wagon, covered up by blankie.  I still cry every time I think about losing my precious pup.

When "Bruddy" came along, Katie took him in hand (after pulling him off the bed when he was 2 days old.  Oops) and guided him through life.  She was all girl to his all boy; nothing Tony could do would phase his big sis.  Even the time I left them in the running station wagon (that car figures into a LOT of my stories) at the top of our steep driveway with the parking brake off to run tell my neighbor we were going to the store.  I heard a giant CRASH, and to my horror, the SW was now crunched into the garage.  When I ran to the car, Tony was sitting behind the wheel looking a little shell-shocked, and Katie was sitting in the back, wide-eyed.  All she could say was "Bruddy Drove!".

Her nicknames: Katie-Kat, Ramona, Quimby, Pofyliner, Gore/Gorey Girl.  Probably more, we are nicknaming fools.

Her school years were also dramatic: the weekend she brought home the class guinea pig (much to my chagrin, as I hate rodents) and came flying into our room on Saturday morning yelling "How did THAT happen?!!" -- turns out GP was pregs and there was a tiny GP in the cage.  She invited all the neighborhood kids over to witness the miracle of birth, while I placed a frantic call to her teacher; Teach said that GP might have up to 10 babies, but they usually died after birthing 8 or so.  After a stony silence on my part, Teacher offered to come over and supervise.  Luckily, Patches only had the one and lived to return to class on Monday, never to come to our house again.

We won't dwell on the time she got in trouble for burning Kleenex in the Science Lab, or the time she got sent home from Camp Cross for carving her name in the brand new cabin (note to KL: use an alias next time).  Mostly, she was a brilliant, fun and happy student who competed in Knowledge Bowl, took some legendary turns on the stage in "Bye Bye Birdie", "Oklahoma", "Little Shop of Horrors" and various choir events, played volleyball and basketball, and bravely battled her way through thyroid cancer her senior year, gall bladder surgery in college and this year's ACL/MCL debacle.  She's an amazing oncology nurse, and I have not a single doubt that her patients get well faster because they have Katie caring for them.

Can you tell I'm in love with this girl?  Who isn't!?  She's the best.  Thanks for letting me be your mom, Katie.  I love you to pieces!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Organic Goodness

I signed up for a weekly box of organic produce from our local store Fresh Abundance.  Here's what we got in this week's box:

1 Bunch Organic Broccoli
3 LOCAL Organic Fuji Apples
1/3 Pound Organic Salad Mix
1 Organic Cucumbers
2 LOCAL Organic Gala Apples
1 Stir Fry Pack:
1/2 Pound Organic Bok Choy
1/3 Pound Organic Snap Peas
1 Small Piece Organic Ginger
1 Head Organic Celery
1 Pound Organic Blood Oranges
1 Head Organic Green Leaf Lettuce
1 Organic Ataulfo Mango
1 Bunch Organic Carrots
1 1/2 Pounds Organic Minneola Tangelos
1 Organic Yellow Onion
3 Organic Bananas
It looks delicious and healthy!  I have resolved to eat my way through this box this week, so I guess I'll be making salads and stir fry!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Lulu Gets in Trubs

Our girl Lucy is normally pretty obedient (she listens to her mama, not so much to her grammy).  But yesterday our little girl decided to be sassy.  She trotted out the back gate while we were futzing around in the garage and headed up the alley to see what she could see.  Katie called her, whistled, and yelled but Lulu just kept trotting.

She finally got nabbed a block away, after doing that annoying "I'm going to let you get ALMOST within arm's reach, then keep moving". 

Boy, did she get in trouble! Mama restricted her to the house all afternoon.  No playing out in the yard, no hanging out with "Bet Wens" (that's Best Friends Shadow and Pumpkin next door), no fun AT ALL.

I think she is off Death Row today, but she'd better not try that bad acting again, or all of her toys are going into lockup.

First of the Season

FINALLY! It stopped snowing, raining, "graupel-ing" (our weather forecasters' favorite word this spring) long enough for us to get out and do some yardwork.

I finished raking up last fall's leaves and added them to the compost bin (I can't tell you how happy I am to be composting), mowed the lawn (and even got the mower started all by myself---this is MAJOR), Katie and I got the water turned on and the sprinklers going, Katie sprayed our  giant crop of dandelions, and we contemplated where we are going to plant our veg and sunflowers.  I think we still have a couple of weeks before we can actually put our starts in the ground, but there's a glimmer of hope that we might get to plant sometime soon.

Katie & I are feeling very proud of our handy-woman skills.  Next, we attempt to fix our kitchen faucet that wakes you up with a spray of cold water aimed at about waist level when you turn the water on.  Stay tuned.