Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sunday Funday

I'm off to BG's to inspect the proposed site for her flock of Sky Chairs and fondle fabrics while MuNKi runs some wires for her network.

By now it shouldn't surprise you at all that this cracks me up. BG and I found it whilst surfing one day. Don't ask.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Stuff Reviews

28 Days : witty, poignant, fun

Fur : bizarre, interesting, "graphic nudity" (ha!)

Walking the Labyrinth : Ehhh. Interesting to some extent, but I kept waiting for more - for the Big Revelation. It never came. Writing was OK, but nothing stellar.

Honey Bea : Very interesting, quick read, got washed by BG when I lent it to her. ^_^

Robot Dreams : surreal, confusing, sad. My children concur.

I'm re-reading The Golden Compass now, in spite of all those great books I have waiting on my shelves. Mostly because choosing was just too overwhelming. :-P

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Entertaining While Inebriated

I found a really fun book at the library today. It's packed with great tips on things like Entertaining the Elderly, including a recipe for "I Remember the War Cube Steak," which invites you to take a cube steak and "bang it with a mallet until it is riddled with pockmarks," and the BRITTLE diet (Bananas, Raisins, Ice milk, Turnips, Tomato juice, Lentils, Escarole.)

The section on children's games had me in stitches, especially the part on Gerneral Party Game Safety, which reads in one breathless paragraph:

"If for any reason a child's clothing catches fire, prevent the child from running because this adds oxygen, causing him to burn more quickly. Roll the smoldering child on the ground or in a rug. If a youngster breaks though the ice, have him kick his feet and wriggle to a solid surface. Kerosene is an accelerant: try not to mix it with an open flame unless an escape route is cleared. Stay in single file. Don't scratch, and don't ever put that in your mouth. The eyes are the most vulnerable part of a wolf. When cornered, jab something pointy into this area."

There are plenty of fun game suggestions (play "Grown-Up" and Social Services), hundreds of off-colour 70's photographs straight out of your grandmother's handy housewife book, and a plethora of recipes. Now, I'm not so sure about these recipes. It's kind of like reading the Onion back when I was a student on the Madison campus during its startup days. I never knew if the coupons were for real, and I was too chicken to ask.

I don't know who Amy Sedaris is, but I have this nagging feeling that I ought to and that perhaps if my television got channels I might. What I do know is that she makes me laugh. A lot. ^_^ Click the pic and check her out.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Erstwhile Canadian

Apparently in order for a new band to appeal to me, it must hail from Canada. Besides, who could say no to a band called "Enter the Haggis"? Not me. Don't look now, but I think that guy's playing an electric bagpipe.

And a longer one with a cool guitar/drum amalgam at the end.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

My Life in Pictures




"You lookin' at me?"

MuNKi bread

fancy schmancy

great horned owl

barred owl

screech owl

a tableau I encountered this morning -- it's not what it seems

sashing or Tibetan prayer flags?

quilt top

Monday, September 24, 2007

Done! Maybe. . .

I finished the sashing today. I was a little worried that it was going to come out all trapezoidal, but it seems to be reasonably rectangular. I may end up adding a couple of strips to the sides just to widen it. Not sure yet. Perhaps I will ask the quilting maven (BG's mom) for her opinion.

Tomorrow is Bake Something Or Else Day. For me, anyway. I haven't yet decided what I will do to myself as the "Or Else" part if I fail. Probably break out the Manilow or something. ;-)

Still trying to find time for everything when there just isn't.

Happy Mabon!

What a gorgeous Fall Day it was here. Real post tomorrow, pics and all I hope. In the meantime, the Grocery Game is still being played here. Today it was $58 worth of groceries for $26. Yay!

Also, I started sashing the quilt today and I'm almost done already. I ran into some too-small-square issues, so I've had to do some ripping and adding.

Hope you all had a glorious First Day of Fall!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Fab Art

So today we hit the Lawrence Street Gallery for the quilt exhibition and oooh la la, am I inspired! In addition to the exhibited quilts, we saw a bunch of little bitty art quilts. Man oh man am I ever gonna make some!

We saw a lot of amazing stuff, but what really blew me away were the pieces by Deborah Hyde. I saw the 1st, 2nd and last ones shown there, as well as at least one other (not shown.) Her mosaic squares are really small, and I just cannot imagine how much time these quilts must take. If I had $2,500 lying around, Gold Beach would SO be mine.

Being in the gallery, paired with listening to BG's mom talk about what happens when you turn 40, prompted me to become temporarily disoriented and take literature from the gallery on becoming a member with thoughts of displaying and selling my photos. I came to my senses shortly after we left the building. I think they use some kind of special air freshener in there which, in combination with the ultra-shiny things and gorgeous art pieces makes you susceptible to delusional fantasies.

In other news, the owl show was very cool. The screech owl (think Pigwidgeon) was adorable, and the curator's description of her cry as sounding "like someone beating a horse in the woods" completely cracked me up. Pictures tomorrow, hopefully.

Our garage sale was successful. We got rid of a lot of stuff and left the rest out with FREE written all over the friveway in chalk. Not much left at all, now. Hooray!

And finally, MuNKi found this (NSFW) oddity. Don't ask. Just click "enter" and then click the play arrow at the top of the new page.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Click the Pic

Mark my words, this one is the modern day equivalent of Winnie the Pooh. And by "Winnie the Pooh," I mean the A. A. Milne classic, not the Disney tripe. (puh-leeze!)

I can't say enough about this little gem, and we're only about 3/5ths of the way through. Ok, so most of us don't like "shut up" (cringe) or "farty" in a young children's book, but I'll forgive these transgressions because this is such a delightful work. This is the kind of book you read just for sheer enjoyment of the writing. Even Mollusc and Sluggie come in to listen when I'm reading this one, and they're 12 and 10.

In other news, we finished Day Two of the garage sale. Tomorrow is our last day and we'll shut down at about 10:30 am, pull in everything we're taking to resale shops and leave the rest out with FREE signs. Then it's off to the Owl Show at the library, and from there the mamas head to a free quilt exhibit while the daddies ride herd on the ruffians. Actually, since MuNKi has to help ref at sparring, one daddy gets the whole herd at first. Hopefully we'll get back in plenty of time for the daddies to then reward themselves with golf.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The One With No Substance

OK, so none of them have substance. What can I say? Not much evidently. I could give you a rundown of my very action-packed day, from Mollusc's Creamy Tomato soup (made from our tomatoes and rosemary) and croutons made from MuNKi's delicious Italian bread, to ducking various phone-calls from money-wanting people, to mucking out the garage for the second (and last) garage sale, to errand running and going out with BG and our 6 (collective) kids to JoAnn's ("No! say the boys, "Kill us now!" OK, so they weren't that dramatic.) and Borders (OMG would you all please be quiet for the 512th time! You're almost as loud as that dude who's snorting rather forcefully to himself over in the Independent Reader Fantasy section and who has quite the strong (though rather obvious) opinions on the (lame) Deltora series. (ie that you should read them in order, uh, ok) ) and laughing with BG over highly inappropriate things -- at least for the children's section -- and interpreting our (and by "our" I mean mostly BG's) dreams with a Dream Interpretation book that must be excellent in spite of the 5.99 clearance price tag.

I could blabber on about how we came back and met MuNKi and BG's husband for a delicous MuNKi-cheffed meal and talked and ate until 10ish, and how I then proceeded to get the rest of the crap ready for tomorrow's garbage garage sale while MuNKi continued to make an extremely long-cooking batch of apple butter from 12.7 of our 1,024 apples. And how I blogsurfed, had no access to the picture computer to upload my mantis photos, and absolutely no inspiration for a post.

Or not.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

"Makes You Feel Daft"

That's what my friend wrote in the email when he sent along this vid. You have to watch to the end to get it. I felt like I had my Eyes Wide Shut.

In other news, I've been reading books and and watching flicks. We watched The Last Mimsy with the kids the other night. We almost didn't make it much past the beginning, the boy was such a brat, but we stuck it out. It was cute, other than Bratley being such a little jerk which, honestly, was unnecesary.

MuNKi and I watched The Last Time and found it very interesting. It's nice to watch one you don't figure out right at the start these days.

I read Honey Bea and enjoyed it very much, and now I'm reading Walking The Labyrinth which, in spite of the title, is not one of those how-to books.

On Sunday we scored BIG at the library book free-for-all. Michael, I seem to remember promising you a "mystery" book (not an actual mystery book) so if you want it, email me your addy, or the addy of someone you'd like to set up. ;-) Mine is milkmaidenster at gmail dot com. BG (my friend Boobies Galore) helped me pick it out. It's a winner, I think.

We actually descended on the library en masse with 2 other TKD families (in the TKD bus no less, which earned us some pretty strange looks) and then went on to the orchard to pick apples and to repsectively devour and quaff our combined body weights in doughnuts and cider. I've been in a sugar coma since then.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

The Answers

How could I pass up a meme with exactly 42 Questions, I ask you? So I ripped it off from Delton's blog and voila! While Delton's answers resonated strongly with me, I ended up changing more than I expected to.

42 Questions

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Not really. My dad got to name us. My mom was going to name the boys, but there weren't any. Poor mama. The other option for me was Tamara. He was still choosing on the day I was born. ^_^

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? Like really cried, or got teary? Teary - tonight making a picture folder of stuff to print up as real pics. Really cried - maybe a month ago when a wave of missing my dad hit me.



5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? Do my 4 pink monkeys count?


7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? No. Never. [/sarcasm]

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Yes. MuNKi has had his out twice and STILL has some, which I think is far more interesting.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Unsure. But I'd never parachute.

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs. Or anything like it. Also Grape Nuts Trail Mix and Special K and, and -- anything cerealistic.


12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? It's all relative, isn't it?

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM? As long as it involves serious quantities and varieties of chocolate and possibly coffee and/or peanut butter, it's good.

14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE? Whatever stands out. I mean, if somone has sleeve tattoos, that will be it. Pink hair - yep. Manga hair - you betcha. A nose the size of Ecuador, jawohl!

15. RED OR PINK? Purple.

16. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? Being very laid-back in general


18. WHAT COLOR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? tan shorts and bare feet.

19. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? Something fabbo that MuNKi cheffed up from our plethora of tomatoes, a Hungarian pepper and rosemary, among other things. And his homemade bread.

20. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Prawn talking to herself. I was listening to various Nickelback albums most of the day, but the last one ran out and I was too lazy to get up and press play again.

I think I'd like to be a Twistable, though.

22. FAVORITE SMELLS? JP-4, anything baking, good cologne on a man.


24. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH? Hockey or racing in person. On TV - whatever I'm reading. ;-)

.25. HAIR COLOR? Dishwater blonde

26. EYE COLOR? blue

27. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? Nope, glasses


29. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Happy endings all the way





34. FAVORITE DESSERT? I have to pick? Ha!

35. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? I just finished A Breath of Snow and Ashes this evening. I have yet to decide which the next lucky book is. Probably Honey Bea. Even though I know there was something else I was going to read that I've forgotten about already.

36. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? Mouse pad? What is this "mouse pad" of which you speak?

37. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON T.V. LAST NIGHT? Nada. Oh, MuNKi and I watched a Scrubs episode on DVD in the tub. (seemed appropriate, given the name and all)

38. FAVORITE SOUNDS? The ocean, low-flying military jets, good music, my kidlets as long as they're not bickering

39. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES? Nickelback and Peter Gabriel

40. WHAT IS THE FURTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME? Tough Q. Furthest from here? Furthest from where I lived at the time? Hmm, CA to visit my grandma when we were living in Hong Kong.


42. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Napa, CA. I'm vintage.


OMG! Someone who knows me way too well sent me this Extremely Cool Cake Blueprint

I want to make one!

If you could make a cake that looked like anything -- anything at all -- what would it be?

Friday, September 14, 2007

Those Three Little Words

"Free Books Sunday"

OMG. BG and I went swimming with the kids this morning, then back to her place for lunch (which her husband had made for us) and from there to the Brighton Library.

Lately, BG and I have been "library hopping." Last week we went to Northville's. Wow. Northville is the kind of swanky town with pavers in their main streets. And gazebos. (not in the main streets) Their library is not only hu-normous, it's also jam-packed with goodies. They have a giant foreign language DVD section, but oddly, those are only good for 3 days. All the other films are good for a week. I think with all those subtitles, it would only make sense to let us have the films for more than 7 days, not less.

Today we went to the Brighton library. They have a rather large, reasonably new library with shockingly few books inside and somewhat less friendly librarians than the other libraries we've hit. The good part was that just as I was wondering when they were going to have their annual book sale again, I discovered that it was actually in progress. Today was "everything is $1 or $0.50" day, tomorrow is "fill a bag for $3 day," and Sunday (oh glorious, wonderous Sunday) is "everything left is free" day.

We're gonna need another Billy!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Word of the Day

I don't think I've ever done a "word of the day" and I may never do another, so it could be more like "word of the century" or whatever. . .

"Chibi" is the word of the day.

chibi Yoda

chibi kitty

chibi sportscar

chibi kitty meets chibi sportscar

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Graphic Indifference

That's today's label as it applies to the way I feel about finishing A Breath of Snow and Ashes. I'm on page 631. There are 979 pages total. The book is due at the library today and I can't renew it online any longer (the jig is up.) The librarians are kind and know me, and will most likely renew it if I ask them to. They've even overriden holds by other people for me (shhh.) But do I want to?


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Ratings Game

Mollusc is a collector and connoisseur of MPAA ratings. Some of these ratings categories include:

"Shark Attacks and Langauge" (shark language?? Save us!)

"Epic Warfare"

"Swashbuckling Violence"

"Adventure Violence"

"Intense Science Fiction Terror"

It's funny how many there really are. So we have fun making up our own. You know, stuff like

"Silent Violence"

"Mime Slaughter" (Mollusc: "You made that one up right?" Me: "Yeah." Mollusc: "Awwww!")

"Premenstrual Violence"

"Musical Violence"

"Inappropriate Touching and Music"

"Musical Horror" (^_^)

"Mathematical Terror"

"Action/Adventure Birth"

"Excessive Norging"

What kind of ratings exist in your world?

Monday, September 10, 2007

Opening Pandora's Box

OK, so that brings a lot of things to mind, but what I'm talking about is ♥♥♥♥♥ Pandora ♥♥♥♥♥


OK, 'nuff said. Moving on. . .

Tonight I taught the 5-8 year old class for the first time since last schoolyear. What a blast! I've missed teaching that group, but I had forgotten just how much fun it really is. When they're that age, they are way impressed by ANYTHING you do. Case in point, tonight I was explaining the Dodgeball variation at the end of class and whistled with my fingers to get their attention. You'd think I'd shown them I could fly or something. ^_^ They try hard, too, because they still want to impress you at this age. One stern word or look is usually enough to quell any goofing off, and a smile or spoken word of acknowledgement or praise makes them work twice as hard. I love being able to help them learn new stuff, to see their faces when the proverbial light goes on, to be there when they overcome a hurdle they've been pushing against. Ahhh, happiness. It's good to be back.

Sunday, September 09, 2007


~Prawn on the way home yesterday upon seeing a squished critter in the road: "It could be a dead monkey. . ." I think this was said in a self-comforting way as she is a fan of most critters, but not so much of monkeys, between the story of Mama (that's me) being attacked by monkeys, and the whole undead monkey thing in POTC. Before you gasp in horror, understand that we FF through all the creepy parts. This has the added benefit of making it a MUCH shorter film. ^_^

~CDs I got from the library: Echo and the Bunnymen, Nickelback, some Celtic stuff, Nelly Furtado, a Sting one I actually don't own (the 9/11 one), Inigo Montoya Mandy Patinkin (mostly because I had no clue he sang), Depeche Mode, a couple of Lenny Kravitzes, and a sound effects disc for the kids to play with.

DVDs I got from the library: Joyeux Noël; The Avengers (there's a movie of this??); Porco Rosso; Marie Antoinette; Brotherhood of the Wolf (Le Pacte Des Loups); Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. . .and Spring; Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress; Arsenic and Old Lace; Danger UXB (used to watch this with my mom and was totally in love with Anthony Andrews); Firefly (saw the movie, but never the show); Alex & Emma; Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, and some Chinese and French kid stuff. Yeah, there is no way I'll ever get to all of them, but now I can choose stuff as the mood strikes me. ^_^ And I can renew most of them a few times. Hey, who can resist when they're free?

~Quotes we tend to use a lot from children's books:

"Odd said Mabel. Very odd."

"Marmalade does not want the wooly worm."

"See the snow. See the snow come down."

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Very Gently

The latest discovery in my studies of The Interconnectedness of All Things:

How very odd. I almost expected to find that the radio version of Lord Asriel was voiced by Sean Connery or Roger Moore.

Now I just have to figure out how Terence Stamp might relate to James Bond. . .


For those of you with no idea what I'm talking about, that first guy is Timothy Dalton, dressed for his role as Lord Asriel in the stage version of Philip Pullman's "The Golden Compass.". The second is Daniel Craig, dressed for his role as Lord Asriel in the forthcoming feature film. Oh, and Terence Stamp is the voice of Lord Asriel in the radio version.

For those of you who don't care, fear not. I'll be moving on soon.

Random Update

Change of plans, Jeeves. For various reasons, we did not participate in the 5K run today, but we plan to try the one in October.

Last night was Gumdo (Kendo) night for the kids in Red Belt class. You could hear the lightsaber sound effects as they fought. No, seriously, some of the kids watching were making light saber sounds. ^_^ They had a blast as usual. Mollusc is showing marked prowess (not to be confused with David Prowse ;) ) at this sport, which is nice because Sluggie is the one who excels at sparring and most physical stuff.

For us, it was nunchuck night. So after we threw all the nuns out of the establishment, we got to play with these pairs of sticks connected by a length of chain. Somehow I always end up next to the same kid - the one I accidentally threw my nunchucks on last time while he was busy doing pushups for dropping his own. (Thank goodness they're padded!) We managed to make it through class without either one of us clobbering the other, but I won't say it wasn't close. We both did plenty of pushups. If you're going to try this at home, never say stuff like "Oh! I got it!" because that signals the nunchucks that it's time to leave your grasp. Violently.

I've saved the best for last today. (though you know I may be posting again with my current state of blogorrhea) MuNKi sent me this great link for a guy who has to be the biggest Packer Fan EVER. Certainly the best. Check it out -- the dude has packed up his things and taken his wife and small children to Green Bay, WI for "a season of unadulterated 'fandom.'" Oh. Did I mention that he's from Sydney, Australia? ^_^ Carpe Diem, Carpe Noctem, Carpe Season Ticketsum. I am green (and gold) with envy. :)

PS my sidebar will return when the "I Can Has Cheezburger?" pics get bumped off the page.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

The 5 Stages of Writer's Block

1. Denial

2. Blogging cessation (because you realise you're doing it instead of writing.)

3. Avoidance/Procrastination

4. Hyperactive blogging and picture posting (some scales may class this as a subset of #3, while others call it bargaining ("if I can look at just one more blog, I'll get back to the story.") )

5. Inspiration and breakthrough! (And then, inevitably, back to 1. Repeat.)

Guess what stage I'm in now.

It's hard (TWSS) for me to say the words "tunnel of fudge cake" without giggling.

And now, if you'll excuse me, I have a delinquent tooth fairy's ass to kick. Again. If you're wondering whether I can, indeed, kick my own ass, the answer is yes. But I also made a BEAUTIFUL attack on the mirror wall at TKD tonight during blindfolded squeaker sparring. MuNKi tells me that the mirror never saw it coming.

Batwoman I am not.

Join the ASPCM

Just one of many reasons why, no matter how creepy they are (especially, in fact, because they are creepy) you should always be kind to mannequins.

I really wanted to put up "In my Room," but I couldn't find it.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Can't Talk. . .

. . . writing. Sigh. I just cannot strike a decent balance.

In the meantime, I'm looking for some of this, so that I will never fall down again.

Oh yeah, and

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


Ooh, I got these uploaded the other day and then forgot.

A Prawn

large eggs

or not -- they're quail eggs from BG, my Amish-wannabe friend ^_^

one dozen of them

with soy sauce, water and ginger

= one dozen soy sauce quail eggs in a tiny bowl

A Prawn and a lizard

A Slug using my laptop

"Doez theze melonz makes me look fat?"

But now my computer has now decided to digitally chew on my pictures. So you get this:



And this:






Dis showerâ?¦ it has a flavr


zOMG!1!! Sumwun Stopz mee!