Monday, April 30, 2012

Z Is For Zippity Doo Dah

I woke up this morning with this classic good feeling song running through my head:

Zippity doo dah, zippity aye, my oh my what a wonderful day, plenty of sunshine coming my way.....

Even though it's a Monday, and even though when I looked outside I saw this:

So rainy and wet, twelve snails have invaded our porch and our dangerously close to our welcome mat.....

I still have a smile on my face and a zippity doo dah heart.  Today is a good day!

I am a little worried that those snails are wrecking havoc in my garden, but I will deal with that a different (dryer) day!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

I have spent the last 8 hours with family, namely my parents and grandparents, and quite a bit of it in the van (with me in the very way back, reserved for the youngest of the I was that lucky youngster) to see my talented cousin and her children perform in their church production of "The Sound Of Music."  

It was awesome!  Well worth the scramble into the third row seat, the risk of car sickness, the early arrival time to get good seats (which we got) and the need to fan myself with the program because it was a little stuffy in the auditorium.

I love "The Sound Of Music."  I love the songs and have always wanted to attend a sing-a-long showing of the movie (but hesitate because hard core fans attend this, usually in costume, and I am not a costume kind of gal) but now I think I'll have to.  It was impossible to keep myself from mouthing the words to the songs being sung!

At the end, when the audience (us!) was encouraged to join in singing "Edelweiss" during the Salzburg Festival scene, I was grateful to finally give voice to the words I'd been holding back!  

And now I know what I want for Mother's Day!  I want to sit down with my kids and hubby, with a big bowl of buttered popcorn and a side of sourpatch kids, and watch Julie Andrews win our hearts as Maria.  I can hardly wait!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Y Is For Yen

A yen is a yearning
A hankering and burning
Tonight it's a yenning
For chips and salsa
And salted rim margaritas
For no cooking, no dishes,
And just family dining
For laughing and joking
And good old story telling

Payday and happiness made it happen was a very good yen!

Friday, April 27, 2012

X Is Very Useful

Dr. Suess was never more right than when he wrote in one of my favorite books, "X is very useful if your name is Nixie Knox.  It also comes in handy spelling ax and extra fox."

I couldn't sing the words I know and hum through the ones I don't to George Strait's "All My Ex's Live In Texas" without that clever little letter.

Without X, I couldn't say my favorite string of letters: XYZ PDQ.  Seriously, as a kid, this was the coolest sounding combination of letters that didn't spell a word that I'd ever heard.

X is crucial to the word I feel right now: exhausted!  And so I am off to bed.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

W Is For Wanderer

I am not a wondering wanderer
Searching and questing and seeking
I was born with my North Star
Tied on a string to my wrist
My destination an absolute
I braved judgement and critiques
In this day and age my dream was less
But being a wife and mother
Is the life that glimmered and shined and beckoned.
I've sacrificed, forgone, and yielded,
And reaped the prize, the joy, the bliss
That only a life's goal can give.

This post inspired by prompt #4 at Mama's Losin' It! and the A to Z Challenge!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

V Is For Verily

Verily I say to you,
Yes, these true words I say:

I am cranky.

Batten down the hatches,
Secure the sails,
A strong wind is blowing ill.

My nose is a dripping faucet
Not a box of tissue to be found.
My eyes are burning with tired
With hours to go till bed.

I make the cranky announcement
My family rolls their eyes
It's not like it's news to them
My colds are always ill-humored!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

U Is For Umbrella

I have carried an umbrella around in my purse for years.  It's small and black and I have been known to also carry a plastic grocery bag in my purse, to put the wet umbrella in, trying to protect the other purse inmates.

The years of purse living have not been kind to it.  It has some tiny, pin prick holes from wear, that are slowly turning into bigger holes.  The velcro is in a constant state of not quite sticking together.  And sadly, the metal stem itself can not stay extended.

As I walk in the rain, it slowly slides back down so I have a six inch space from the handle to the umbrella canvas.  I live in constant fear of my hair getting caught up in the inner workings of an umbrella hood.

Today as I was walking back to work, with the metal frame dangerously close to my hair, I thought I could just collapse the umbrella and put my hood up.

I could, but I do not like to have a hood on, mostly because it muffles sounds of approaching monsters and dolphin-bear gangs.  Who wants to be caught unawares by that sort of thing?  And also, you know, hood-hair. Similar to hat-hair, but a lot more static.

I carefully shake the rain off my well used umbrella, I store it under my desk at work to dry out, and at the end of the day I walk all the way outside, before I remember it.

It wasn't raining, but you never know here in the Pacific Northwest.  I went back in, mostly secured the velcro, and tucked it back in my purse.

It's still got a little more life left in it and now a new purse pocket designed for water bottles, but perfectly fitted for one faithful, little black umbrella.

Monday, April 23, 2012

T Is For Tightrope

Tightrope walkers
High wire dancers
Caught between
Too much and not enough
Finding the balance
To be  
Amazing and stupendous

Sunday, April 22, 2012


A distress text from my Mom is not something to be ignored, especially when this picture is attached:
I opened my text, saw this thing in her backyard and her one word sentence, "Help!" We ran out to the car, my son faster than anyone in his quest to save his Grandma from dastardly birds that do not belong to her and in a minute we were standing at her fence asking if the bird was still there.

It was a turkey, just out for a Saturday jaunt, and I did not know this, but turkey's can fly and that is how this one landed in her completely fenced back yard.

My son and husband shooed it down into the old chicken coop, and then my husband went down the street to tell the neighbors their turkey was found, did they know it was missing?  While he was gone, the turkey took flight and perched precariously on the edge of the back fence, distressed and making worried calls, and obviously thinking of jump/flying down the hill.

The neighbor arrived and we asked how she usually catches it and she replied, she doesn't really.  It's one of two and she can usually lead one of them home with their food pan, and the other will follow.  Well, we only had the one, and it decided enough was enough, it was leaving.

It took off in a half falling, half flying way, and the neighbor shook her head in distress.  They are her mother's pets, and she will be in trouble if she loses them while her mother is in Europe.

I wonder if a turkey is a good pet?  I honestly thought they were raising it for food!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

S Is For Super Saturday

Super Saturday is an official term in our town. It refers to the first Saturday in the month, and our local hardware store (established 1903) has super savings on that day.  The whole town has picked up on it, so the first Saturday has super sales up and down main street.

And no, we aren't so small town America that our main street is really named Main street.  It's Olympic!

Today is not technically Super Saturday for the rest of my fellow towns folk, but for me, it was a super (de-duper!) Saturday.  My husband finally had the day off, I made a really good pot of coffee, and the sun....The Sun Was Shining!

He casually mentioned that he'd heard of a rummage sale, did I want to go?  Did I?  Um, yes please!  After a quick look at other garage sales in the area, we put the top down on our new (to us) convertible and hit the road with several stops in mind.

It was fun!  The weather was lovely, the sales were treasure worthy, and the back roads were empty. There is nothing more super than spending a Saturday morning with my husband.....

Friday, April 20, 2012

R Is For Reunion

Suddenly, and I honestly don't know how this happened, our 20th reunion is looming.  Facebook is blowing up with plans and today I got the official invitation.

I'll be attending for sure, with my cute high school sweetheart who has only gotten cuter with the years, but what I can't figure out is, how is it 20 years already?

It feels like we just did our 10 year one.....

For our 10th, my husband and I showed off the most adorable picture of our two little kids, with their arms around each other, grinning with pure happiness.  I asked the kids if they'd be willing to recreate that picture.

I'm sure no one will be shocked that they politely, but firmly, declined!

No worries.  I haven't told them yet, but they will be coming to the family picnic portion of the weekend.  We'll still get to show them off!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Q Is For Quintessential Dog Thoughts

1. When in doubt, chew on it.  If it's edible, eat it.  If it's not, that's okay, just exercise your chewing muscles.

2. Nap time is the best 75% of the day.

3.  Did I just see a [insert anything and everything under the sun]?  I better bark at it.

4.  I'm barking out of love, please don't shush me.

5. A good scritch-scratching is better than anything.

6. Except food.  Meal times are better than anything.  And snack times are good too.

7. A blanket is meant to be gotten under, anyway, anyhow, even if it takes the blanket off the person who was originally under it.

This post inspired by prompt #4 at Mama's Losin' It! and the A to Z Challenge.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

P Is For Pancakes

Darling Husband,
We miss you when you work long hours
We peek out the windows
We listen for your motorcycle
And never more than tonight

Tonight is pancakes for dinner
I am filling in for your Chef-liness
I can tell you right now
You didn't miss anything

I do not do pancakes as well as you
I burned the bacon too
The kids said the pancakes were good
But they only ate two
And we threw away (yes, threw away)
Perfectly scorched bacon

The dogs appreciated the plentiful batter
For a puppy pancake or five

I give up on pancake cooking
Regular pancakes, that is
I still rock the heck out of Swedish Pancakes
But that is for a dinner a different night

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

O Is For Only

I was the only one in the car tonight
I walked my only self into the store
Only I pushed the cart
I was the only one drooling over candy bars
I only had one car door to unlock

When the kids were small
I was never only
Trips to the store were epic adventures

I missed the old days tonight
As I drove home
Only one.

Monday, April 16, 2012

N Is For Natty

I remember going to see, in the actual movie theater no less!, the movie The Journey of Natty Gann.  I was in love.  I loved Natty, with her flat cap and boys clothes and her rough and tumble ways.  It was the first movie I saw John Cusack and as previously posted here, I love him.

I had the movie poster on my wall and I dreamed of Harry calling me 'Kid' when I saw the movie on VHS years ago, I bought it.  I've watched it, I've shared it with my sisters, but apparently I've never shared it with my kids.

Last Saturday was a quiet day and since I was ironing, I asked the kids if they'd watch a movie with me and they said yes, so I popped my old favorite in and I told them to get ready for a heart warming movie.....

Which, of course, they did not find all that heart warming!  They said the wolf was super scary, Natty was only about 12 years old to Harry's 20, and the whole depression thing was sad.

Huh.  I still love it!

Although, it did seem like the kids are right about one part.  The wolf was a bit of a stalker.  And by his example you learn that  if you stalk a girl, give her dead rabbits, and growl menacingly, you will win the girls heart!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Morning Coming Down

There is just something about the sound of Johnny Cash drawling out the words to 'Sunday Morning Coming Down' that sets my toe to tapping and my voice to singing.  I know it's not a hymn, and it's more of a hangover song, but on Sunday mornings, I can't help but think of the song, and wish I had the Sunday smell of someone fryin' chicken.

Currently, I have the smell of an over full kitchen garbage.

It is exactly the wrong smell for this spring Sunday morning coming down.

I guess the rest of my day is going to be spent doing a bit of Sunday morning cleaning.....and that is soul satisfying for me.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

M Is For Music

My children's voices are music to my ears
Out of tune piano keys fall unheeded on my tone deaf ears
But their laughter is pitch perfect
Beatles and White Stripes tunes drift down our stairs
Their bedroom doors open across the hallway
Talking and laughing and occasionally shouting
All in good fun and merriment
I am a fan of so many genres of music
But my favorite by far is the sound of their friendship.

Friday, April 13, 2012

L Is For Living

This is what I've Discovered:
Life is a Gift, an Opportunity
It's Unexpected, an Adventure
It's Fragile and Uncertain
It's Promising and Hopeful
I will live Fiercely
At the end
I want no Regrets
I'll slide into Home Base
Satisfied with a Life Well Lived
Short or Long
It's the only Life I've got
I'm Enjoying the Hell out of it.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

K Is For Kinky

Way back when we were young parents, we lived in an 800 square foot brick house.  It was so cute in it's smallness, and being as we only had a two year old and an infant, we fit in it just fine.

My favorite place to sit was on the front steps.  My son would play in the yard, periodically running up to the sidewalk to peer down the street, looking for Daddy's truck to appear (because that is what we were all waiting for!), while I sat on the steps, usually nursing my daughter.

Yes.  We are those kind of people.

Our next door neighbor was a nice enough older woman, who kept to herself, and that suited me just fine because I kept to myself, except for the occasional (okay, all the time) staring into her kitchen as I stood in my kitchen washing the dishes.

I discovered quickly that she had a gentleman caller.  And then I discovered that his name was Kinky.

Really?  Okay, I knew then that my front porch nursing was not going to be a problem with the neighbors!

I later learned, through my Mom who knew his daughter, that it was a nickname (thank goodness) due to his curly hair (thank goodness again!)

For the year and a half that we lived there, we enjoyed their non-meddlesome, non-judgmental, neighbor-ness!

This post was inspired by prompt #3 at Mama's Losin' It! while still trying to do the A to Z challenge!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

J Is For Jam, Jar, Jet, Jelly, Jem

I avoided the game of Scrabble as a young person because I am a terrible speller.  Actually, I am a great speller.  I know when I'm spelling a word wrong....I just can't figure out how to spell it right!  I am often amazed that I can read (and read voraciously) because I do not understand phonics.  My daughter can attest to this: she recently tried to get me to make the sounds certain letters make and I literally could not.

But somewhere along the way of life, my husband and I got a Scrabble game and started playing.  When it's just him and I, in a good sport, fun times game, I will ask him if I'm spelling a word right before I lay it out.  Clearly, this is not a cut throat kind of game!

The letter I hate getting is "J".  I can only think of words like Jam, Jar, Jet, Jelly, and Jem.  I know.  Jem isn't right.  And really, I am thinking of Gem.  I'd rather get a Q or an X than to see the letter J.  The problem seems to be I can not think of a word that J is in other than the first letter.  And of those words, they are all very short and very little points.

I'm not sure why my husband even plays Scrabble with me......Actually, I do.  He usually has the most points (let's not get into labels of 'winner' or 'loser') and we usually laugh the whole time we play.

Now, Rummy, on the other hand.  I'll cut him with the cards if I think I'm losing.  We tend to not play that anymore!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

I is for I

I love clogs and dogs and overcast mornings.
I love mochas and beaches and rolled down windows.
I love wishes and kisses and front porch sitting.
I love rhubarb and zucchini and tangled weed gardens.
I love cigars and tattoos and salted rim margaritas.
I love books and cross-stitch and classic old movies.
I love Jesus and Momma and all points between.

I am a sum of all
Added, subtracted, divided, multiplied
Equalling the whole

Monday, April 9, 2012

H Is For Happiness

Happiness is
This lovely sunshine
The smell of mowed grass
New growth on an old bush
Garden planning
Mouth watering
Dreaming green dreams
Happiness is
The promise of Spring

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Kids Are Still Kids

It's nice to know that even though my kids are teenagers enough to look like this during the little kid Easter egg hunt:
They are kids enough to look like this when they see their Easter baskets.....

Saturday, April 7, 2012

G Is For Good Morning

G is for good morning
The frost is lightly lying
The sun is peeking out
The neighborhood is glowing
The girls and I are up
Hubby and kids are sleeping
Coffee is softly perking
The warm smell so inviting
The house of quiet is peaceful
Except for the one barking dog
I rush to hush this disturbance
Shh! You silly little puppy
We may be early risers
But let's let it be a Good Morning
For the still in bed tired sleepers.

Friday, April 6, 2012

F Is For Freak-Out

Or, at least, that is what I'd been planning for today.  And forgetting to set my alarm and waking up two hours late would usually send me right into freak-out mode, but not today.

The last couple of weeks I've been obsessed with one thing.  I've often thought of having a booth at an antique mall, but never did more than think of it.  Then weeks ago, I saw that a new shop was coming to town, looking for vendors.  I emailed to ask what that meant, and the next thing I knew, I was taking a box of  "inventory" down to met the owner.  

I was clear, the items in my box were not inventory.  They were my personal collection, but it represented my style.  She liked it, I liked it, and I became the proud renter of a 6x6 spot.  I'd already bought shelves for it and had been storing them in my parent's garage, now they would actually get some use!

I've spent the last few weeks shopping thrift stores and estate and garage sales, hunting vintage treasures.  The house has fallen apart: I haven't mopped in two weeks, dusting is a forgotten thing (except the one time I picked up a dog toy and wiped off the TV for better viewing), the clutter from my project is everywhere and the only thing I've halfway kept up on is laundry.  I like clean socks and underwear, what can I say?

But tomorrow, Saturday, is the opening day.

I thought today, Friday, would be a complete freak-out day for me.

But I woke up, two hours late and all, calm and happy.  It helps that when I left the shop last night, my space looked like this:  

I have a few things left, but if the shop opened right this minute, I'm ready.  And so very excited!  I now have a place to put all the cool things I always want to buy, but used to be stopped by my daughter being the voice of reason, asking me where I would put that item in our house......

Thursday, April 5, 2012

E Is For Erik

E is for Erik
My one true love
He's cute and sweet and funny
And romantic all the time
He makes me laugh
He makes me mad
He makes me want to hold his hand
All the days of life.
He's smart and clever and kind
A fix-it kind of guy
He makes me smile
He makes me try
He  makes me glad I said 'oh, yes'
And call myself his wife.
He's a worker and a greaser
And a hooligan to the core
He makes me love
He makes me dream
He's my darling, sweetheart guy.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

D Is For D'oh!

Running late, almost out the door, when I hurriedly slipped my rings on my fingers and left.  Took me half the day to realize the reason things felt wrong (literally) was because I was wearing my wedding ring on my right hand and my anniversary band on my left. 


Realized before lunch, I had a new run in my tights, tights I'd already mended and turned.  Realized after lunch I had a hole in the toe on the other foot, and all afternoon I could feel the hole getting bigger and bigger and if I had shaved my legs anytime in the last week or so, I'd have shed those things and pretended spring in the PNW is actually warm.


Thought I might be either getting a massive, blinding headache due to a brain tumor or I was going insane, because after lunch I felt like someone had changed my computer monitor while I was out.  It was the same color, same taped quotes on the bottom, same sign here stickies at the top, same everything except the font just didn't look right.  I spent all afternoon half freaking out and almost got into a cranky pants fight with our IT guy when he told me it was the same as always, when Jr IT guy stopped by and said he could shed some light on what was different.

He'd changed my monitor.


Now if only I'd had some Doughnuts, my Homer day would have been complete!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

C Is For Convertible

C is for the Convertible
The one I used to own
One dark commute
One load unsecured and lost
Then found in a crunch and crumble
Bumper, skid pan, radiator
Only injured party is my car.

Who knew a bicycle
Could total a vehicle?

C is for the Convertible
The one I'm going to buy
Soft top, priced right
Ready for the first warm day
Sun filled adventure
Project cars need not apply.

Monday, April 2, 2012

B Is For Boys

My boys, of which only one is actually mine, went off on a camping adventure on Friday after school, the moment spring break officially began.  They said they'd be home on Sunday, but on Sunday as I was driving into the church parking lot, my cell phone rang.

It was my son and of course, my first thought was, "This can't be good," because I'm a firm believer in not calling just to check in.  Oh, you can text me to let me know you got somewhere safe, but a phone call is entirely different. Only call if you need something.

He did need something.

Permission to spend one more night out in the cold, wet, mountains.

Really?  You guys are having that much fun?


All righty then.  He did come home briefly, because one friend had to catch a train to spend the rest of break in Montana and our son is the driver, so since he was in the area, he stopped by the house to get the camera and to tell us a Sheriff deputy had been up to see them, patted them down, took their names, then offered them firewood if they needed more and they'd only been lost slightly once or twice on their explorations and Spam is actually quite tasty.

My husband agrees, it does sound like fun.  I feel slightly opposite, but the grin on our son's face confirmed that letting the boys go off on a camping trip was just exactly the right thing to do!

My Perfect Chocolate Cake

This is for Judy!  It's not a top secret family recipe, all though I did get it from my mother in law.....I hope it wasn't their family secret and now I just give it out willy nilly!

Preheat oven to 350. 

Mix 2 3/4 cups flour, 2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp salt, 6 Tbls baking cocoa powder, and 2 cups sugar.

Add 2 cups water, 10 Tbls oil (corn or veggie), and 2 Tbls white vinegar. Mix until combined.

Bake about 35 minutes in 2 greased round pans.

My only advice is do not taste the batter.  It is not an indication of how yummy the cake will be!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

A Chocolate Birthday

I make a darn good chocolate cake.  It's a simple recipe, that comes together quickly and bakes up in about 35 minutes, and it's pretty popular with family members, but maybe none more than my nephews!

I made a cake for today's celebration of 7 years, and next Sunday, I will make another cake for a celebration of 5 years.  While I was cutting slices of cake today, and I had a line of nephews holding paper plates, waiting (not quite patiently, but it is chocolate cake...who wants to be patient when cake is at hand?), the youngest little guy is making plans for his Oh-Cho chocolate cake June.

That's how good it is!  He's got some now, but he's already looking forward to more!