Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 has been an interesting year.  It seems to be so uneventful at face value, but when I peel back the layers I can tell you it was a year that included...
- Two friends like me, who were sure they'd never find their perfect match, settling into forever:  one got married, the other got engaged and set the date
- Quite a few coworkers leaving the company (some the area), some by their choice some not.  This includes several of the offices that sit empty around me, and 4 people I called friends.
- Friends welcoming new members of their family (fuzzy and non) or the early years with their non-fuzzies.
- Mom turned 80 in January.
- Vixen turned 13 in February.
- The fuzzies have made huge strides this year, with the aid of medication for Vix, in getting along and playing.

A nice mix of good and bad, but if you focus on the people who were truly effected by these changes, none of it about me, which is what this blog is suppose to be about - me.  For me... 2012 is a list of bullet points that aren't suppose to be talked about to the general public, some that are downers and some that I am quite proud of and plan on sharing anyhow because I need something to say about the year that is relevant to me other than going to work and sitting on the couch with fuzzy butts.

Warning:  If you're going to read this and accuse me of bragging then don't read the next little portion.  I've worked hard on some of this and I want to be able to tell someone other than my dog and document when it happened for myself - otherwise it doesn't feel like I've accomplished anything (ahh... back to that no one to share my achievements and joys with feeling).  Besides, you'll be happy to know (if you're of the 'she is bragging' faction) that I'm still miserable with my current state of existence, so if that's what you live for - enjoy.

I'm proud to say that I achieved a few of my personal goals and desires including:
- Being able to cover a trip for me and my beloved niece to Europe when she graduated from high school (see my posts from the end of June).  I think it's safe to say WE had the best time and I'm so happy to have those memories.  She's moved off to college now, and I'm proud to say kicking my butt on grades (at least my undergrad grades).
- Maxing my yearly retirement contributions for the first time ever.  I was excited to realize a few months ago that I'd be able to do it in 2013 then recognized if I pushed a bit I could do it this year, so I did!
- In tandem with the contributions at the end of the year I was also able to celebrate seeing my retirement accrue to a level that I was aiming for by the time I turned 40.
- Early in the year I met another by 40 goal, crossing a threshold in my salary (and with a few years to spare darnit).

I didn't cross the other big one off yet that is on the by 40 list... but I've finally aligned my monthly payments on the mortgage to get VERY close to finishing it before I turn 40 as well.  (That is if I stay here and continue to have work and pay at the pace I'm presently at.)  I'll admit, seeing two households of friends achieve this in 2012 has inspired me to push harder, so I thank them for their inspiration!

The fact is I am obsessive... sometimes, to my own benefit that forces me to get ahead and try to achieve obscene goals that I assign to myself.  But at least I get ahead - so if bad things happen I'm a few months ahead on mortgage payments.

I guess I should mention the downers, if only abstractly.  One happened in February (the 'sickest' I've ever been and the most physical pain I've experienced in my life) but it's definitely remained an ongoing reminder of how precarious what I've grown accustom to could be and how catastrophic (maybe not catastrophic - just completely 180) things could have been.  Another other celebrates a 10 year anniversary that just reopens old wounds and brings me to tears (you know - the worst emotional pain of my life).

I frown a wee bit to think that my dad would have turned 95 late this year, and the 25 year anniversary of his death is just around the corner in June.  But the good from being a bit more mature and able to reflect on those memories has inspired me in new ways.  For example, he kept every 50 cent piece and wheat penny he came across, which has inspired a small coin collection.  On the other hand, he worked for Conrail, so I've been eyeballing some PRR items that I want to pull together as a bit of an homage.

So, here I sit, a few hours before new years, watching CNN (of all things) to see if we should gather our barrels and head to Niagra Falls to head over the cliff with our country.  It could be another nail in the coffin of some (or many) of my goals for 2013 (especially if budget cuts take the toll that takes me from teetering on the edge of no work to take my own tumble over a cliff).  I don't really make resolutions, but there is a lot I'd like to see different in 2013.  Some things are on the docket, which I'll report on as they 'go live'.  Suffice it to say, for those that have known me for a long time, there may be some surprises.

It has a 13 in it.  It's mine, I've claimed it.  Now bring on the good stuff... and Lord help let me just follow the path you lay out instead of fighting to do things on my own and inadvertently circumventing the awesome calm right out of my world.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Bless the Internet.  I realized that a few things that I was planning to run and shop for had free shipping, one being light and easy to deal with (furnace filters from Home Depot) and the other being a blessing to not need to lug around (6 bags of dog food).  You heard me right.  I usually only buy 3 when they're on sale, but I figured if I don't need to haul them from the store, load the durango, unload the durango, and lug them to the front door I'd double-down.  I am a bit mean as I did get a giggle wondering what the mailman or the UPS guy would think (call it minor revenge for past performance), but today I got the shipping notice that it is instead coming from FedEx.  Regardless, with these off of my to do list I had more time Friday evening to stop in on my aunt and uncle and then go for diner with them before hitting the grocery store.

I've tried to make my weekend productive and relaxing.  Most of the Christmas decorations are down and away (minus the lit up huskies and sled... I just wanted a few more days with it) and the treadmill and elliptical are back in place.  I promised myself I wouldn't watch the DVDs I got in my Christmas gifts without being on the treadmill, so I was eager to get things accessible again.  Then I watched two episodes of season 7 Sunny while walking last night.

I spent some time this weekend with the girls outside taking photos of them playing and enjoying the snow and I've been on icicle patrol/knock-down duty all weekend.  I think we got another 3-4 inches maybe.  It's blown around and packed down a bit, so it's hard to say what the total is.  Speaking of photos... only one more day to complete the photo a day challenge.  I admit, I'll be happy to be done with my camera for a while, but then I need to try out the new goodies I got for it.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Last year the folks who plow for me didn't have to come even once... that's how nice the weather was.  Needless to say I saw my boy, Goat, today.  He called when he saw the vehicles so we were able to get ourselves out (shockingly w/o too much trouble) and get the mess out of the way.  I had gone out for 10 minutes earlier in the morning and ended up feeling like something was sitting on my chest and spitting out coppery tastes.  I am quite okay with spending the money for a plow, even if it does churn up my gravel, that I'll clean up and deal with in the spring.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

I promised if the roads stayed clear for my trip to and from Altoona on Christmas day I wouldn't complain when this mess hit... and I won't.  I will however say that it did start to come down pretty fast, so I left to work from home at lunch time today.  What I did try to shovel/sweep clear covered back up pretty fast with the wind, so I'm just leaving it for now.  There aren't too many folks in the office this week so I'll most likely stay here tomorrow as well.  That definitely makes it easier to not complain as I don't need to shovel, scrape, or deal with the scary roads.  Saffy is definitely enjoying the snow, making huge leaping circles in the yard and wanting out often, after brief chances to warm back up.

My visit for Christmas was good, I headed early, planning to come back before dark as I was expecting poor travel.  We headed to my aunt and uncles for a wonderful meal and time chatting after opening our gifts at mom's.

While I won't complain about the weather I will put this gripe out there... there is a history of people spreading their holiday greetings via text message.  I'm not a huge fan, but I'll cope.  What bites me is when their friends, whom I don't know, reply to EVERYONE saying "thanks so and so - you too" or the like.  Seriously?  You had to send that to everyone?  Why do I have to get charged/counted for incoming?  I can't control who sends me a text.  Boo.  The take the cake occurred at 5:42am this morning when someone chose to reply as such.  I'll tell you this... my reply was NOT very Christianly either.  It woke me, I had to look for fear there was something wrong, then I had a hard time getting back to sleep and spent my morning as grumpy as I was when sharing a bed w/ an ex who snored all night.  Ugh.  No, you don't get to interrupt my sleep and not feel my wrath.

Monday, December 24, 2012

I'm going to tell you what a terrible Christian and person I am.  Feel free to skip the rest... I'm just going to whine and have a pity party tantrum.

Of course it snowed a little more today... not even an inch, but yet Richland didn't bother to do diddly, so the roads were pretty freaking gross on the way to church.  On the way there I had my first bad person incident which had me ready to roll down my windows and scream at the idiots heading into St Benedicts.  Why for God's sake do these people park ACROSS a 4-lane road and then walk out in front of traffic to go to church.  The roads are crap.. don't walk out you moron!  Park by the church, they have a lot, use it.

So I get to church and I'm about frozen, I never took my coat off and my fingers and toes were about numb through service.  My hair and knees however were NOT numb... as I could feel the guy behind me pulling my hair when he grabbed the seat (and hair) and I could feel the woman in front of me who kept dicking around with her hair and throwing it on my knee (crossed legs).  Ew.  At my church you end up shaking a million hands just to get in.  I hate that.  But I suffer through it.  You'd think at some point one of those hands would have handed me one of the candles... but no.  I think I was the only person who did not get one and I felt retarded when they did the lighting.  I also didn't enjoy hearing the little girl behind me noting she can't see through my BIG HEAD to see the girl dancing at the beginning of the service.  Seriously?  You really should note to your child that her comment was rude... and little brat, you couldn't see even if I wasn't there.  It was, of course, packed... so I had taken to the outside to try and give myself a slightly better chance at getting out faster and not feeling so oppressed with anxiety at the herd of people.

At least my stop for dinner wasn't met with an "only" or "just" at my request for one seat.  I'm back home and trying to defrost my fingers and toes.  Please please please don't let 219 be gross tomorrow... I really don't want to drive to and from Altoona.  Yes, I could just go ahead and skip Christmas, and that would be fine.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Yesterday I was pretty sure it was time for me to just create a burrow and crawl in for a few months.  We didn't get much in the way of snow, definitely on the lower end of the spectrum for what the weather warning emails were calling for, but it definitely got cold and the wind was kicked up pretty good.  I forced myself to amble out briefly on Saturday and decided quickly I was NOT heading to the event on my calendar that evening... instead I took to the oven and baked up a batch of brownies and a tray of pumpkin bars to share as I move about through my other holiday appointments.

The first was today with the Laws.  Even if the sun hadn't come out to warm things up a bit and clear the roads of better they are always worth the trip over the river and through the woods.  As a result of this visit, I've officially become a fan of Froelich's butcher shop after just one bite of bacon.  Bacon?  Does this family know their way into my heart or what?!  But just in case I was tough to impress there was screwdrivers with fresh squeezed oj.  A visit with them, even if we spent it sitting in a closet talking is always, always, always a treat.

I came back and tortured the fuzzies for a little while before heading to Off the Rak with Beff and Slips for a bite to eat, exchange, and time to catch up.  The food there hasn't been up to snuff the past few times... it's okay, just not something that has me ready to run back down that way any time soon.  At least we got to sit and enjoy each other's company.

I'm home and ready to crawl into my nice warm bed after a busy day... best part?  Two more days before I have to go back to work.  Yay!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

So, "skin picking" has been added to the official list of mental disorders.  I know my brain is a bit screwy, but mental disorder?  What is more amusing is that I'd never have thought to look up my own neuroticisms online prior, but I've since learned my actions of picking at my fingers are labelled dermatillomania, and considered a type of obsessive compulsive disorder (me?  naaaaw.)  It does align as the wikipedia write up notes the association with stress.  I coulda told you that!
Now, the reason I mention this is to then point out the insanity that because this is now in the APA's manual it now will have better coverage for treatment.  Really?  Who goes for TREATMENT for being stressed out and picking a bit of skin from their fingers.  I really think people lok forward to having some long freakish label they can put on their own craziness so they can get pity.  We're all frelled up one way or the other and if you don't admit to your tidbits of crazy then you're probably the person who I should really stay clear of!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Another good evening of holiday celebration with a friend over a meal (mmm stuffed chops and candied carrots) and a rather odd movie (Howard and Maude).  Once again I was truly treated, this time to a very thoughtful gift that aligns with what I have recently expressed interest in collecting.  You're a good Egg :)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Happy (what should have been) 95th birthday to my father, Tony Maucieri.  You may have left us when I was pretty young, but I'll hold tight to the memories I do have including the advice on who to marry, how to deal with flowers in the yard, what you should save/put aside, and then some.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Impatience like only a Johnstown hockey fan can muster (we made Puck Daddy):;_ylt=AsXU1b8Lwk_zO4o572K.b46Rbcp_;_ylu=X3oDMTE5bTAwaTJkBG1pdANCbG9ncyBJbmRleARwb3MDMjMEc2VjA01lZGlhQmxvZ0luZGV4;_ylg=X3oDMTFpMm9iMzh1BGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANibG9nBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25z;_ylv=3
It could be argued that the long pause could help the Tomahawks by stealing what could have been momentum from the visiting team.  Just saying.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Had a good time at the work Christmas party last night.  I'm kind of fortunate that I took the bus, which meant leaving at 11:30.  I can only imagine how much pain I'd be in if I had had another hour or two of dancing!  Yay for old and out of shape!

I'm still waiting for one more last minute ordered Christmas present to arrive (supposedly it will be here Thursday) so I can finish wrapping gifts and put that junk away.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

10 years later.  Still alive.  Still spinning in the same cycle, unfortunately.  Still depressed a bit by the holidays.  Feeling a bit like I'm in 7th grade at work WAY too often.  High school never ends.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Stressing again.  I know it's all in my head, but it's real none the less.  I always tense up as this time of year approaches, but it's definitely a bit worse this year.  I'm almost looking for the first of the big three... well, we'll call an empty apartment the first of the big three.  It always stresses me when it's empty, especially in the winter.  I know I'll be fine either way, but it does make me tense.

Anyone know someone looking for a furnished one bedroom after Christmas?

And... ehr mer gawd... facebook is down.  Prelude to Mayan justice?

Sunday, December 09, 2012

My upper right back muscles are aching again.  Had to get up and pull out the heating pad this morning.  I know I am generally stressed, which is what is causing this to manifest, but I wish I could shake it out and be done with it.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

I called mom on Friday night to make sure she'd be around today.  I mentioned to her that an aunt had asked me about us going there for Christmas dinner.  My mother's response about floored me... basically, she was thinking about asking me if I "wanted to go out for Christmas dinner, lots of people do that now a days".  I feel bad making her cook a big meal, and yes, it seems like a waste for just her and I... but go out to eat?  My feelings are wrong and greedy, I know, but... that's not Christmas to me, and I'm going to have plenty of years to go out for Christmas dinner by myself after she's gone.  My second thought is that I was ill prepared to not have another Christmas dinner as I know them, but I guess that happens abruptly to people for numerous reasons.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Me:  Mom, remember me asking you about Dad's 'golden spike' that was on the wall?  There are a few other things I've had on my mind that I want to know if you still have.
Mom:  I think I gave that spike to your Uncle R.
Me:  [bumming in my head] What about the wheat pennies and 50 cent pieces dad always saved?
Mom:  I don't remember him saving 50 cent pieces.
Me:  Yea, every time I went to the meat market for you guys I'd ask them for change in 50 cent pieces if they had them, dad would always pull them and wheat pennies.  Anyhow, look and see if you can find them, I'll pay you for them.
Mom:  I have your dad's old ID badge from the railroad.
Me:  YES I definitely want that!  Oh, and the old glass Christmas ornaments you had.
Mom:  That was garbage.  I got rid of it.
Me:  Well rats.
Mom:  Why didn't you tell me 20 years ago you wanted that stuff.
Me:  I was a CHILD, I didn't know any better.
Mom:  Joe [my brother] was mad at me years ago for getting rid of all of his old baseball cards that were in the attic.
Me:  I bet he was!!!

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

It can't be JUST ME who thinks ALL illegal immigrants should be denied drivers licenses.  Who the hell says "you're not legally here, but ... I'll give you ID".  WTH!?  The word ILLEGAL kinda makes a difference.

Monday, December 03, 2012

I kept the garage in better order than I had recalled, so it was pretty fast and easy to clear a path and pull the Tib in the garage yesterday.  As is the routine I also scrubbed the basement floor to keep things healthy for the girls and did a bit of laundry yesterday.  In other dog news, Saf and/or D have decided to start ripping up the mattress they have been gifted for comfort, so I guess they won't have somewhere soft to chill out.  Kids!

Since I had time yesterday and a box not quite full ready to mail to niecey poo I baked some chocolate chip cookies and pumpkin bread as well.  I decided to try swapping out the eggs and oil for canned pumpkin to cut back on the calories and it turned out fantastic - both tasting and beyond moist.  Just perfect.

I guess I'll have into the evening on Sunday to do more for the next few weeks while we wait for Walking Dead to start back up.  Good stuff last night!  Ooooh Andrea.  *shakes head*

Oooh... and I had my dentist appointment today.  It always seems like a big achievement when he wheels back and says "you're good".

Saturday, December 01, 2012

My back is feeling much better (thank goodness), down to just a little twinge if I turn wrong.

Shipped out the Christmas goodies to my sister today, which marks a key point for Christmas.  My shopping is done with one exception, which is making me twitch.  Christmas cards went today too.  At least I feel like I'm on top of something since I slacked today and napped this afternoon instead of moving a few things around in the garage and getting the Tiburon away.  It was in the 50's here today, which is shocking, and makes me not want to put the car away, however, as of today it is officially not fully insured, so away it goes.

Remember the decoration I was talking about a week or so ago?  It arrived yesterday!  One broken bulb quickly replaced and ta-da it is up in the front window.  I love it! Better still, walking out front to see how it looks and seeing the living-breathing gray and white at the window in front of it leading the pack.  How cute is this???

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Back hurts :(  I am not a back problem kind of gal, so I'm not sure what to make of it.  It started two days ago, feeling like I pulled a muscle, but not in my back, instead in my chest cavity.  One prb there, there isn't muscles in there.  The tweaking feeling would hit in my upper back and almost around into my ribs, but lightly.  I figured I just slept funny on Monday night.  Yesterday it was a little worse and today it's outright backpain when I move.  I am guessing it is just the knots that were worked out by my massage last week trying to re-take hold elsewhere.  Sitting in the cold, which triggers you to tense up doesn't help either, it just makes you more aware of the pain.  Getting old sucks kids.  Right now I want nothing more than a heating pad and a humidifier.  *shakes head at self*

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Nothing has brought me this big of a smile in a long time.!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Day 4 away from work:  I've gotten so much done this weekend not only are the decorations up for the holidays, but some cleaning is done along with the dishes and clothes.  I've cooked delightful meals and treats.  I've relaxed.  I've gotten the fuzzy butts running around.  I've gotten through some magazines that have been laying around and I have designs on finishing my current book before I go to bed tonight.

Do I need to actually say It's been a fantastic extra long weekend?  Well it has, but as always the knowledge that I have to go back to that place tomorrow is setting back in.  I can't tell you how jealous I am at times of the women who have found their perfection at home with kids and someone who loves them.  Yes, it gives me heartburn to see the perfection of others all over facebook, to the point that I've had to unfriend people because of the distress it brings me, but worse still the ones who deny it.  I have two instances that come to mind.

The first is a friend who posted looking for someone else to sign their kid up a special class so they had someone to talk to while it was going on.  Without thinking I offered the thought from my own heart that it sounds like the perfect time to catch up on reading, to which the response came "I have plenty of time for reading during the day."

The second was a friend who seemingly randomly posted "I want a kid." on facebook to replies from friends who told her to "be careful what you wish for", flippantly saying "you can have mine", or highlighting how expensive they are.

Both instances made me so angry.  None of you even see what you have.  But you'll quickly tell us how it's not all roses.  Really?  The same things that other friends have called "the greatest love" and "the best thing they've ever done" and you are so quick to dismiss someone else's desire to get to feel that?  Just rediculous.

Trust me, if you get to be at home be it so busy you have no time for anyone (as some of my friends have stated) or able to leisurely read and get 'bored' know someone would gladly have a glimpse into that life.  It also makes some of us that know if we DID get to have kids we wouldn't get to be the super mom very angry.  Nope, some of us wouldn't get to go on the field-trips or be there when the bus arrives because we have to work... because no one else will take care of us but us.  So take a minute before you respond and realize how much you're dismissing as common and bland in your reply.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Ok, update, I didn't make the Slips casserole (yet).  The chicken for it is cooked however.  Despite much freezer digging I could not find frozen broccoli.  Since it's snowy and cold I was NOT heading to the store.  Tomorrow, I guess, meh.  Instead I made a batch of no bakes!  :D
I believe I have sneezed more today than I have at any other point in my life.  I've also had quite a few hanging there... right on the cusp of the sneeze but unable to get them to manifest.  Not sick, so what's up with that?

Today was a day about cooking comfort food.  I blame the dusting of snow outside.  There is chicken and 40 cloves and mac and cheese (also a la Alton Brown - I love you dude) and the rest of the chicken that needed cooked will soon be part of the Slips cassarole.  I think my cooking for the week is done... that is, if I leave any of the existing food for leftovers, it is SO freaking good.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving was pretty standard and uneventful.  Headed to mom's mid-morning, we grubbed, we napped, hung around for a while, and played Scrabble before I headed back up the mountain.  I don't think I've ever heard mom be so negative about her own cooking.  Seems like nothing pleased her.  Granted, the turkey breast prb could have used a little longer to soften it a bit more, the mashed potatoes were a little milky, and the stuffing balls did stick to the pan, but they were all still pretty darn good.  A bad day of mom's cooking is always way better than most anyone else's cooking, that's a fact with my mother.

Anyhow, early to bed last night, despite the afternoon nap.  I lounged to mid-morning today and then was up and moving within minutes.  The guy who tends to my lawn came earlier than I expected today (one last pass to mulch up leaves) so I had to quickly head out to scoop the back yard up.  From there I kept on moving, bringing the bins up from the basement and commencing the Christmas decorating after a quick bite of Thanksgiving leftovers (of course).  So, the tree is up, as are the other lights and decorations.  I even got distracted and swept/mopped the basement mid-decorating spree.

From there it was time to get cleaned up and head out to catch up with Kirkus, Mithy, and Beff for some evil Orchard grub and  few drinks.  All I can say at this point is it is so nice to have a 'second' weekend still in front of me.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My sis loves me enough to call around to 5 Walgreens and to run after work an additional 20-25 minutes in the opposite direction to pick something up for me and ship it to PA!  I've been eyeballing these siberian themed Christmas decorations that a gal from the rescue in NC posted.  I had even looked at some really fancy/pricy ones, but put those out of my mind due to the price and lack of space to store them the rest of the year.  The smaller less expensive set were, clearly, at Walgreens.  We don't have one here in the Jingle and mom checked the one in Altoona with no luck.  This thing had best be HALF as cute as it appears to make it worth all of the running I've caused others.

I can't believe I'll be one of those ppl with a cheesy Christmas decoration.  Yep, old.
Yay a generic!  However, if you run the pricing functionality I think it's a bit of a lie to put a big green check mark and say that something is covered if you're then going to say the plan pays $0 for this medication.  Um.  That is, pretty much by definition, not covered.  *shakes head*  At least it's a lot less expensive than the brand name.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

M is for migraine, miserable, monster, mad, me.   I had a nice one bloom up yesterday after neglecting to ask for no MSG in my lunch.  The non-heavy hitters weren't helping and I woke early this morning still aching, so I pulled out the migraine meds.  Guess what, expired, well... too bad.  I then also realized that if I'm changing up health plans I prb should order some more now and take advantage of my current prescription coverage, right?
As if I needed another reason to change to the high deductible plan?  Basically nothing is covered.  So if I have a good plan or not I'll get to pay for them.  Again, thanks society for mooching to the point that it costs me more, I really appreciate it.  I'm going to go hide in my dark cube and hope the expired Axert does its thing in the next hour or so.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

A large portion of my day was spent making the house smell incredible.  All of the tomatoes frozen this past summer are now sauce with fresh meatballs.  One of my large pots got the stick blender for a more traditional sauce and the other my chunky marinara style sauce.  Enough for 10 meals w/ leftovers, check!  At least I can say I did something today, even though I stayed in bed til 11.

I'm already dreading returning to work tomorrow.  At least it's only a three day week.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Spent a good chunk of another afternoon wrapping gifts today.  I'm pretty caught up, but a few more gifts need purchased and a few are on the way, so there will definitely be one more round.  I quickly snagged the gifts for my Salvation Army gifts.  This year I selected one 7 year old girl and a 60 year old woman.  I do love participating in it, even if I do end up worrying "will they like what I picked, will it fit..."

Tonight was time to head out with some peeps... a small subset hit Breaking Dawn part 2 and joined up with a larger group for some late grub at Quaker Steak.  I gotta say, I really enjoyed this one...

<spoiler alert>
Despite knowing that Jake imprints on the baby.  I don't care that it is not strictly a sexual thing, that's just gross.  I finally got to see Jane run in fear and die... even if it wasn't "real".  And, yes, I wanted to cry every time I saw a wolf in pain.  I'm truly a fuzzy-sympathizer.
</spoiler alert>

Speaking of fuzzy-sympathizing... Saf is wiped on the couch next to me, I think it's time for us to go crash.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My healthcare is effectively jumping 48% per pay.  To think there are seriously assholes who think this is a great plan out there blows my mind.  You better believe if I'm paying for it I'll be using the hell out of it.  oh... and we still get to pay MORE to make it an "equitable distribution" (read:  those of us that make more get to supplement the costs for those who make less)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

I tried to do some Christmas shopping yesterday, but I can't claim to have crossed much off of the list.  At least I found the motivation after that to get a wee bit done around the house including raking more leaves to the garden area and tying off the clippings that the trash company suddenly won't take in a bin.  Note:  it will be ugly and much ranting will occur here if they aren't gone when I come home Wednesday!  I also remembered (after I left the mall the first time) to pick up another frame for the photo of my mom's side of the family.  So I took the time to get everything hung on the command strips.  (By the way, whoever invented those... you deserve to be rich.)  Perhaps all of that is why I was in bed by 9pm.  I woke back up feeling refreshed around 1:30, but I was able to wipe right back out.

Today I was up early and headed to Altoona to visit hit a few other stores in an attempt to gift shop and visit with mum.  She fed me with some fresh homemade meatballs and on a rare occasion I whooped her at Scrabble, it was a good day.  Now for the Walking Dead!

Friday, November 09, 2012

I'm really getting use to and loving getting my hours in earlier in the week and bailing early on Friday afternoon.  I came home and tended to the girls at a leisurely pace, relaxing a bit, then headed out... first I stopped and grabbed some harvest pancakes at VD.  Yep, 4pm and I was eating dinner.  I had a hunger for some good cakes and they sounded yummy, plus, since I was heading to a happy hour for a few beers I needed the carby/bread based grub.  Top off doing something to lengthen my Friday night (above) with Monday off and this is going to feel like a mini-vacation weekend money down!

While I was waiting for my food I saw an older couple leaving, the gentleman had a Korean War Vet hat on... I felt compelled, so I stepped outside of my comfort zone and approached him long enough to excuse myself and say "thank you for your service, happy Veteran's day" and to shake his hand.  I've decided to challenge myself (and others, consider yourself served by reading this) to find 5 people before the end of this long weekend, strangers, to reach out and thank for their service.  Will I find 4 more this weekend?  We'll see.

Anyhow, from there I headed to Southside to wish SmElliott and Sridar a fond fair well.  Today, we truly lost two very intelligent members of our company family.  It was good to get out and see/talk with so many folks old and new... but why do we wait until people are leaving?

I needed a relaxing start to the weekend after last night.  I had a bit of a spat here at the house, and I have no one to blame but myself (wasn't monitoring to make sure the one treat got eaten).  This leaves me quite disappointed in myself as a bad mom, but it also leaves me relieved that it wasn't due to a regression in any of the medications we've been having great success with in recent months.  Everyone is okay and even the post squabble grumpy amongst the girls dissipated quickly.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

I was a bit bored and disenchanted quickly when I got home.  By 6:30 I was considering just heading to bed... then I decided to get the photos from the June trip into the photo album.  That spawned me wanting to scan the free onboard photo we got during that trip... and working to fix the printer connection.  After hunting for cables and giving up and hunting for my thumb drive I then realized why it wasn't working anymore and fixed it WITHOUT needing to connect it via cable.  ID-10T error, but none the less, it's fixed.  Spending that much time in the dining room also made me decide to take all of the printer paper upstairs to get it out of the way.

Finally, seeing the little card sitting on the dining room table I was also reminded to go ahead and gather pantry goods for the scout troop that collects each year before Thanksgiving.  Two bags gathered up and ready to go for this Saturday.  I'd say for a night with no plans this was decently productive.  Now if I could just a few Christmas gift ideas before I go shower and actually turn in.
I'll start by saying this:  dear friends, if you disagree with me, I am sorry, but I need to say how I personally feel about the election and I mean you no disrespect and love you no less if you and I do not agree.  I am not shocked by the craziness in Florida, wishing I was already in Texas so I could celebrate _my_ state, keeping my fingers crossed for NC (still not 100% decided but favorable there as I type this message), but disappointed in PA.
I am disheartened and a little fearful for the future this morning.  While most of PA is lit up red we still went blue... why?  Because of the poor population centers that want their hand out.  Is it so wrong to say I've worked hard to get where I am and I don't want to fund someone who didn't?  So yes, I'm disappointed in PA. 
I have been praying for weeks now for hearts to be swayed in the direction God so chooses, that things go "his way" not "ours", so perhaps they did, I do not know.  All I know is when asked if I am better off than I was 4 years ago, I can say yes, however, I've also spent more then half of the last 4 years very worried for my job and watching quite a few people around me loosing theirs.  At the drop of a dime I could go from better off to desperate.  The biggest factor (not the only one) creating fear for me is what will come with the healthcare changes.  I don't want this and I definitely do not want to pay for it.
I'll try to see the positives... at least the crazies were wrong - there are no riots and no martial law.

Monday, November 05, 2012

I am so incredibly excited to go vote tomorrow.  What's wrong with me?

Sunday, November 04, 2012

I had a fairly productive weekend (yes, I did pull out the couches to clean even if I didn't get the TV stand moved) but as my lengthened by an extra hour weekend comes to a close I'm still bumming and feeling like nothing was accomplished.  Time to start wishing another week of my life away.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

It's a sad moment.  My Miche business will be no more come the end of the year.  Because I don't press press press I will not be meeting their yearly minimums.  I had been wondering if I should renew and figured "eh, this way I can still order and can help people when they do contact me".  I admit, I hate not being able to solve things for people.  Regardless, it is what it is, I feel like my decision has been made for me.  I know I haven't done much in the past year and a half, but I am sad.  I guess it's my fear of change and regret.  I don't NEED the extra cash like some of the folks who aren't working full time in addition, so I can feel better knowing more business would go their way if at all.

Anyone who works direct sales for 100% of their income?  I just can't imagine as I hated feeling like I was pressuring anyone, which is necessary if you want to bang out orders.  My hats off to you all... rest assured friends it is not an 'easy job'.

All of that said, while it is still up, if there is anything I can help with - contact me or hit up the site
I slept pretty late this morning, at least compared to recent months.  Got moving to snag some beets from the little farmer's stand up the road and shovel in some breakfasty food at VD.  The beets are all cooked and peeled, my laundry is done, and I'm thinking about doing a deep clean here in the living room.  I've had the itch to move it around (which means pulling all of the heavy stuff out making it easier to clean fully).  We'll see.  I popped an excedrin allergy, hopefully that will alleviate enough pain to get me moving.

My sinuses are on full out burn mode, so the humidifiers are running.  Too bad I can't have one at work as to prevent issues from brewing up 40 hours a week.  Even if I don't get around to a full clean just yet I'll be making the house smell all comfy and yummy with dinner tonight.  Maybe a DVD and a fire?  Yeah, that sounds like a good idea.

Friday, November 02, 2012

I loathe the thought of getting on the scale again this weekend.  I didn't walk all week thanks to the less than pleasant outdoor weather (yes, I know I could have made good use of the treadmill, but I did not), I'm moody, and I'm eating like a champ.  I am putting money down on 5lbs up.

Gotta admit, I don't regret my dinner however, as I got to grub at Westwood, while watching Hotel Transylvania w/ Eggs!  It wasn't quite Frankenweenie, but it was a good flick as well.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Above average doesn't mean diddly if you're the dumbest kid in the smart class.  From elementary school to today... that is the theme of my life.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It looks like the hype about Sandy in our area was rather overblown.  It's too bad we couldn't say the same for NYC.  The pictures are just horrific!  I can't imagine how long it will take to get back to some level of normal there.
Here we did have some gusts, nothing like I would have expected, and steady rain, but again not as hard as I expected.  They were calling for 1-3" of snow and we just had a little bit of slushy stuff that already is gone or slid off of the vehicles.  I never could get connected to work last night, that and the less than horrid weather has me in the office as any other Tuesday, and I even drove the Tib.  I guess with all of the rain if we did get a solid gust it could pull a tree loose, but for now all clear.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Forgot to mention that the Durango started yesterday without an issue... that's a week and 5 days w/o being run.  Is that good enough to prove that it almost HAD to be the starter draining my battery?  On the other hand, at least I know she should start if we do get laying snow in the next few days.
Another notch in the old scale has been reached.  I admit it, I had the weather channel on for more than 5 minutes.  *shakes head*  They're making this category 1 storm sound like the coming zombie apocalypse!  After so much on the news (and even at work), I admit I did make a run out as a result of the coming storm... I needed dog food, and a few bottles of water.  I felt like an idiot buying the water, but clearly, I'm not the only one as I took the last three from family dollar's shelf.  Truly the deciding factor in my mind on the water was also the dogs.  I will not be the mother who has an empty bowl for her kids, regardless of my lack of planning for myself!

I should go out back and try to clean what gutter I can get to since we're suppose to get so much rain.  But it's cold and rainy out there already... so this is going to take a lot of motivation.  I should have gotten my butt in gear yesterday, while it was overcast but still pretty decent.  Instead I took a nap and barely got my walk in before heading out to meet the Schmous and Mr and Mrs Fresh for dinner. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

This morning, while brewing the pot of coffee in the office kitchen, the news was talking about "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and how it encourages bullying and should be removed from TV.  Are you kidding me?  What is wrong with people?  Something that came out in 1966 is the creation of bullying today?  Freak no.  You're upset with the fact that they call each other names... sometimes the shoe fits, because guess what I think of your opinion on this if you agree, blockhead!
Bullying isn't something new, there is nothing you will do to stop it completely, but I assure you not spanking your kid, sending them to their room with their PS3 and other goodies, and giving them time out won't help either.  The attitude of no losers, everyone gets a trophy needs to stop.  If I ever have a kid they'll be held to a higher standard than the bullshit most people seem to be subscribing to.  I plan on doing my damndest to teach them right from wrong, impossing boundaries, and you best believe when I think they violate it I will be dealing with the situation.  Grow up adults.  If your kid is being an asshole, handle the situation and make it crystal clear that it is unacceptable.  The only shame here is that when one adult refuses to parent the community can't step in and repremand for them.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

78.  That's what the bank sign read today when I left work.  Why oh why can't this last?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

It was so nice yesterday I almost don't believe it.  Walked after dark in mid-60's temps!  That makes for one heck of a nice (and easy) walk.  This morning there was rain on the ground, unfortunately, but it looks like we'll be in the high 60's all week, so (for once) you won't hear me complaining about the weather.  That combined with getting an allergy shot yesterday, which will hopefully tame down my sneezing and itchy nose, should put me in a decent mood, even if I do have to get up and come to work each day.
Danika is still moving around well and has a smile on her face.  Our household is a-okay this week.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Despite it feeling like a longer weekend, it still went too fast.  Saturday (and today for that matter) I did walk, as promised, to make up for missing Friday.  I did my normal running around and then got myself all 80's-ed out and headed to Altoona for the Nolan's annual Halloween party, which always proves to be a nice time out with good people.  Got home QUITE late last night, or early this morning - depending on if your cup is half full or empty, but I was still up barely in time to head out the door and get to church.

From there I ran to Home Depot to get some parts to fix the light out front that got broken in a small mishap last week, all is well there now.  Hit the mall to snag my free BBW travel size and headed home to do some cooking.  I have several packs of chicken I trimmed up that were sell by the 22nd, so today I enjoyed french's onion chicken (again) with an acorn squash and then in the evening a batch of chicken noodle soup.  Apparently the acorn squash was quite tempting... as my leftovers proved to be too much for Danika to refrain from.  She gave two paws up (on the counter) to it.  I'm not going to complain too much, at least she wants to eat (which is a nice change), and she's feeling well enough to jump up to get at things, that's a major plus.  Maybe we need to cut back to one tablet a day?

Friday, October 19, 2012

This week went by pretty fast... yay for another weekend!  I did take the morning off on Thursday to return my sister to the airport :( but I still had plenty of time in early to then bail a little early today to lengthen my weekend again.  Of course, I had to take a half an hour of vacation, but that's a whole other story for those who choose to inquire in person.  Either way, getting out and seeming to lengthen my weekend could be a good pattern - therapeutic.

A few other big names are heading out the door.  I also have to give credit to one of those names for my current sustainment there, so I do wonder how this might impact me across the next so many months.

I came home today and spent an hour with the girls before heading back out to the movie theater to catch Paranormal Activity 4.  I do enjoy these movies, but I really hate the general movie going audience for these movies.  If you're that terrified stay home, I don't need you shrieking at every little shadow (damn you weak little women).  The movie had the usual share of jump scenes and, for a fourth ... well it is what it is.  From there I swung through TJ Maxx and Ross as my mind is in full out shop for Christmas mode now that I feel comfortable doing so.  From there to have a bite of sushi and handle that craving with the Beff.  I'm back home, not walking tonight, as it is raining and lightning at this point.  I'll get one in tomorrow, rest assured!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

What part of this title makes you care about what these people think:
"Walmart Moms say Obama won, but not by much"
Really?  Get back in your minivan dear white trash, go home, put on some decent clothes, and stuff it.  Why are we so desperate for someone to tell us "who won" a debate that we'd go to these lengths to create cliche groups that some of the moron voters will identify with?

Monday, October 15, 2012

I had another great weekend.  Left around lunch time on Friday since my time was in.  This allowed it to feel like a 3 day weekend, which tends to be when I get the most done, so yay!  Of course, as proof that cleaning is evil and should be avoided I had two minor catastrophes in the process (one on Friday and the other on Sunday).
1).  The handle on my vacuum busted off.  Yep, snapped right off up by the switches.  I can still use it, but it's not very comfortable.  11 years (it was a wedding gift) and that thing still keeps up with fur from three dogs.  Needless to say I made a couple of calls and found a place that can order the part, so within 2 weeks it should be comfortably operable again.
2).  I knocked something over while dusting, which landed on a bottle of wine, busting off the top and allowing half a bottle of banana to pour out onto my dining room carpet.  FOR SHAME!  I know I should have pulled out the rug scrubber, but I didn't.  Maybe it will eat away at me until I do so tonight.  It's not in the best of spots to get the scrubber into without moving a bunch of heavier furniture either, go figure.
I also got the pepper plants out, some soil turned, and my first set of garlic (ever) planted out back.  I'm so excited to see how that goes next year.  I know it has only been one day, but so far Saffy hasn't dug everything back up.  I'm counting it as a win.  Visited with my sister and mum on Saturday, which meant I opted to skip out on my walk.  Yesterday's walk was abbreviated so I could get cleaned up in time to attend my first auction with a friend.  It was a bit long, but he scored a few things that he wanted and I felt good as I spotted some of the silver he got at a stellar price in the box!
Best part of the weekend?  Um, The Walking Dead started back up again last night!  *spoiler alert*  Carl is now allowed to run with them, so I guess I can't get irritated about him as much this season, but I still can hate on Lori.  Seriously, gross nasty prego belly with the belly button all sticking out.  Surely you can steal some loose clothes from somewhere.  I do hope it eats her alive on the way out, but I'm sure I can't get that lucky.
I've had a very itchy set of sinuses for the past few days.  I guess it's only the start of the misery that is winter and low humidity levels.  As it was down to 25% late last week in my cube I got on top of getting my two humidifiers out (for home use, since despite a doctors excuse I was forbidden to hae one at work to try and keep myself out of distress) and cleaned up.  Fortunately, we've had another (slight) spike upward in humidity so it's in the 40 range here at work today.  I guess for that reason alone I won't complain about waking to a wee bit of rain this morning.

Friday, October 12, 2012

I had another one of those "damn, when did I get old" moments.  Yes, I still frequently listen to CDs in the car (not MP3s, but that's beside the point) but more often than not when I change to the radio I am on 104.7.  Yep, talk radio.  I watched the pres debate last week, the veep debate last night, and I look forward to the pres one next week.  *shakes head at self*

Monday, October 08, 2012

First frost of the year requiring a scraping this morning!  Hunted down one pair of gloves for my walk this evening.  I guess winter is right around the corner.  Boo.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

I so had a great weekend.  I managed to avoid the colder, wetter points and got my walks in, both days in the morning so I could get to everything else that was packed into the weekend.  Saturday I was up relatively early so I could get a few things done around the house.  This included walking (of course), vacuuming, laundry, other little tasks, and showering.  I needed to get through all of this so I could get out the door and to Altoona.

I spent a little time with mom (mostly helping her catching up on her word puzzles) before we headed to pick up my sister at the State College airport.  She came in at 6:30, so I also had to make sure mom ate something mid-afternoon to keep the grumpy hungry mood away until we could get to La Scalia's for a bite on the way back.  Back up the mountain and to bed as I had to get up and get moving this morning as well.

Out early for another walk and a shower before Church, then I hit the house briefly to gather Dani and the collars off of Vix and Saf, and meeting up with Beff, to head downtown to another church for a small blessing of the pets ceremony in celebration of St. Francis.  Back up the hill to return D to her slumber and back out to hit Big Lots to take advantage of 20% off everything.  I had hunted for bread mixes at the store last time I went grocery shopping and bummed at the lack of choices, so I was able to stock up for my winter bread making today!  Then we walked over to Quaker Steak and Lube, which just opened a few weeks ago, for a bite to eat.  I had never been prior, and I am pleasantly surprised, at least with the pulled pork sammie.  I guess I'll need to go back to try their famous wings.

From there we headed up the hill to see Frankenweenie!  I am a sucker for puppy movies and this did not disappoint, I mean, c'mon the whole premise tells you the dog dies... yep, bawled, several times.  A good flick, love it, look forward to having it on DVD to cry over whenever I want.

Since I really only had one meal today I snapped a little and baked some red velvet cupcakes tonight (they're cooling as I type).  I can't wait to smother them with cream cheese icing and indulge.  No wonder I am not losing any weight.

I guess my weekend is pretty much over, but it was a mighty good one, so I'll try not to complain about returning to work.  I can say that each day this past week went pretty fast and I was busy, so that's a good sign.  Fingers crossed for me to make leaps and bounds this week as I come further up to speed!

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Sometimes things happen that make you laugh... and really make you wonder if the people we care about who pass before us are lurking around.  I just finished reading a book called "Heaven is for Real" about a little boy who had all kinds of stories to tell of what happened to him when he was very ill.  Long story short in that book he made it seem like so much could happen in so little time 'there'.  If that's the case or even if it isn't... you've got forever, so I'd think you could creep on most everyone you know if you chose to do so.  My point in  mentioning this is, okay, so the world lost Peter Steele a couple of years ago.  I know I didn't know him as family or a close friend as to think he would haunt me (bear with me here) but given the sense of humor he had and the time and capacity I'm granting to the afterlife, I am choosing to believe he got a little laugh at my expense the other night.  (...and shoot, why not visit all of your really big fans?!)

So, as I came back on Tuesday night it was getting dark.  I needed to cram branches into the garbage can to make sure another load got hauled away on Wednesday.  Without taking my things in the house first I was out there stuffing the can and guess what... managed to drop my car keys (the same ones I 'lost' a few weeks ago - what IS my problem lately?)  I figured I just dropped them in the gravel and was out there swearing and saying out loud where are my keys etc.  I eventually came in and got a small flashlight which allowed me to quickly find them, as expected, laying in the gravel.

Running behind it was time to get in gear and get walking... so within minutes I was heading back out the front door with Saf and turning on my phone for some tunes (on random as always).  So what's the first song that plays?  An Ode to Locksmiths.  First thing Peter says in the song?  "Where the f*** are my keys?"  Ha ha big guy :)  Thanks for the October visit, even if it is just all in my head.  You are missed!

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

As promised here is a quick update on my trip.  I normally get a little sad dropping the girls off, but I have to admit, this time I had a smile.  What I'm assuming is the granddaughter/daughter (maybe 7 or 8) of the mother/son I see working there the most often was there and upon seeing them coming into the back area she starts shrieking "my favorite huskies!"  Yes, I'm confident they get lots of attention and lovin at camp :)

For a 5 hour drive it wasn't too bad.  We grubbed along the way to break up the trip and got to Elizabeth, NJ early enough to do a little shopping.  I'm going to try and erase my first visit ever to Ikea from my brain.  I simply do not understand what the fascination is people.  It wasn't quite walmart torture, but I'll pass.

I also want to note I was a very good girl, walking in the morning before we left, walking at the hotel in the morning before we went to the ship, and hitting the gym onboard all three of our days at sea!  I've taken work out gear before but in 15 cruises this was the first time I actually hit ShipShape.

Anyhow, one night's rest and to the ship and our nice 'hump' balcony cabin.  Our first day at sea was pretty busy, but we managed to hit the ice show, which featured a gal we've seen before w/ hula hoops that was fantastic.  I also had the most horrific view of my life.  If you're a dancer, gymnast, ice skater, or anything else that requires you to wear the equivalent of a bathing suit on the bottom while hiking your leg up very high I just want to say that you should VISIT BRAZIL, so I don't end up with a full view of the jungle from the second row.  *shiver*  There was the standard parades, comedians, shows, whirlpool time, and lots of food.

Our first day in Bermuda we took the ferry straight away to Hamilton where we did a little shopping (window for me).  Day two we were out early for our snorkeling trip, which was lovely as always, but it was a bit rainy with some storms popping up, so we didn't get to do the stop by the ship wreck.  After that we headed back to Hamilton and walked to Fort Hamilton.  Both days felt a little 'short' since we had the early dinner, but it was a nice relaxing pace.  On day three we stuck around near King's Wharf, walking out of the area and towards where the worlds smallest drawbridge is (didn't go the whole way).  We did however stop at the sea glass beach (yay for other people's garbage all smoothed out by the ocean and sand) and then to the Naval cemetery and back into King's Wharf for Beff to visit the glass blowing factory.

As always, we met some great folks including this guy and his lovely wife, and two sweetheart gals at dinner.  We also saw some interesting creatures onboard, like the white-trash Carnival-wannabes in the love and marriage game show.  There was also my very favorite cruise director, Richard Spacey!  Now, he's not much for socializing one on one... but on stage he can't be beat.

I learned something too.  For whatever reason I've never noticed it before on the maps they show on the one tv station onboard... did you know that in the middle of the North Atlantic is the Sargasso Sea? Ok, maybe you did, but I didn't.  So there you have it.

Creepiest event?  Day walking back from Fort Hamilton!  We saw two nicely dressed gentlemen (but that's pretty normal in Bermuda) walking with what looked like a large clear garbage bag with some trash in it from a distance.  When they crossed and I got a better look at what they had I about jumped to see the brown bags within that had bright red stripes of tape across them reading EVIDENCE.  They were heading up the hill towards some of the government buildings.

I did treat myself a little too, picking up a blue diamond ring onboard.  It's not very big, but it's a marquise and I like it so that's that.

Now for a few photos !

Monday, October 01, 2012

Yup, you guessed it... I ran away for another week, but I'm back.  A few months ago I spotted a really good price on a 7 night out of Bayonne to Bermuda.  Less than $100 a day for a balcony room.  Sent it to Beff, as I often do when I see great prices, who usually just says "yea, that's a great price!".  This time she said "do you want to go?  we should go."  Needless to say I was on the phone within 10 minutes.  So, even though I had a big trip earlier this year and I shouldn't have scheduled another I did.  It seemed to be serendipity there for a while as those vacation hours were what pushed me through to October for work (which would have at least prolonged healthcare if the worst had happened).  I think, just enough stretch to help me stay covered.
So, anyhow, I'm back safe and sound, well destressed, and a bit nervous to come back and ramp up on the new stuff.  We had a little rain, but nothing torrential, but I'll post a larger update/details later.  I'm just happy to have gotten to cuddle up with my (very tired) puppy last night.

Friday, September 21, 2012

So as I got my coffee Geraldo was on the news.  This reminded me of my desire to chastize the world through the medium of my blog for people who shouldn't be famous or allowed to fade into oblivion (I always think of Riff-Raff when I say oblivion).  Here are the top 10 on my mind this fine Friday morning:
1).  Geraldo - thank you dear inspiration.  Al Capone's vaults, that's all I should have to say, but I can note the fact that he was basically Jerry Springer and now we give a rats ass what this idiot thinks about world issues?  Really people?
2).  Kardashians, Paris Hilton, and the like... stop it.  Rich shouldn't mean people care what they're doing.
3).  Jersey Shore cast I really don't think I need to say anything else here to defend why you need to just ignore them and start praying they'll go away.
4).  Honey Boo Boo - WTF is that?  I'll point you at the Geekolinks for today ( for how I see this hot mess.  I'll extend my comment to anything little girl pagent.  That's just disgusting.  You're teaching your child to be that spoiled little bitch that we all should have kicked the snot out of in jr high.
5).  Sarah Palin - I'm still hoping she'll just shut up and go away.  Stop making it more difficult for women to present themselves as intelligent, contributing members of our society.
6).  Hideous models - I already ranted about that Rimmel of London commercial buck-toothed nasty thing, but seriously, Ellen Degernes is NOT a model and she is most definitely not a Covergirl.  If she is, you better give me a contract too.  I guess I should also point out that so skinny they look like a 10 year old boy is also pretty hideous.
7).  Lindsay Lohan - she represents all of the actors and actresses with serious freaking issues that should be put out of work until they get clean.  Someone needs to "love them enough" to just say no to employing them while they're a big train wreck.
8).  Any celebrity with a "baby bump" (I hate that phrase/term.)  I don't care.  Millions of women popped out puppied before you - why is society so freaking obsessed with any celebrity having a baby?
9).  Michael Vick - the poster child for athletes who should be shamed out of the lime light.  No, I will not forgive him until he's suffered as those dogs did under his ownership.
10).  ...I'll leave this one open to suggestion and may come back some day and present my #10.  Post your comment, who did I miss in my list?
Well, the good news is I was in bed by 10:30 last night.  The bad news is it is because I skipped a walk.  I also have my full sheet of (college-lined) paper worth of to dos half way crossed off.  It's probably this list and feeling ill prepared that had me awake at 1am and 5am last night.  Now, at 1am you're thrilled because you wake feeling decently rested and peek at the clock to learn you still have a whole night ahead of you - YAY!  At 5am you're still excited because you've got a solid two hours, but you also realize you still feel pretty exhausted because you're not dropping down far enough into sleep - BOO!
Earlier this week the starter was removed on the Durango, so now we have a bit of a waiting game to see if that does anything for me.  Of course, they didn't undo all of their wiring, so you'd imagine any short or bad action taken along the line could be the issue and removing the starter wouldn't do diddly for you.  I also got my allergy shot Wednesday, but I'm totally stuffed, on the verge of a headache, and had an incredibly itchy nose last night.  Sup with that?  It had best fade as we head into the weekend.  I do love the autumn, but not the autumn allergies.
Oh, and when I pulled out the tomato plants I think I mentioned that I left the peppers.  I also took down the fencing around the top, so guess who keeps hopping in there and trying to dig.  Little bugger!  I keep telling her thanks for the help but mummy doesn't want the peppers out yet.  Ok, time to get on my morning... that means coffee!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Most every evening this week is booked up.  That bodes for me being a bit exhausted and grumpy by Thursday.  Today's theme was hair. After I work I headed for a long overdue hair coloring.  I've been putting it off for a while, and now that things look a little up I needed to get in there.  I walked to and from, which is a good thing, as I didn't get much of a regular walk in tonight.  I did feel guilty totally skipping out, so I did haul out with Saffy for 20-25 minutes.  That totals me at 40ish rather than 60-70 for the night, but too bad.  I'll get back on it tomorrow.

After that it was time to start ripping out leg hair.  I really want to get back in for another laser treatment, but I am so not committing that kind of cash to something unnecessary just yet.  An hour and some later and my legs are on fire.  At least once the adrenaline kicks in the epilady doesn't hurt as bad and it keeps things handled for an extended period of time.  Yay Italian side.

Tomorrow the remote starter will be disabled on teh Durango.  We'll then see if the battery drains at the same pace.  If so... I really don't know what that means for me.  If it doesn't, then we know it's the starter and I guess my options are to have them remove it (which is an incredible waste of money) or to put a kill switch on the line.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Where did you go weekend?  Always in a blink of an eye, right?

Saturday night I cleaned up after my walk just in time to head to OperaFest.  I got tickets from work, so I went.  Opera isn't exactly my thing, but it was pretty decent.  Of course, the retardedness that followed was displeasing.  I managed to drop my keys between the seat and the door as I was getting out of the car.  Of course, I didn't realize that until I went to leave and couldn't find my keys.  Gratefully Beff was there, so I was able to get her copy of my house key to come back and get my spare keys.  I really really really hate making stupid mistakes.

So, today I headed to Altoona after jumping the Durango.  I've pretty much decided I need to call the place that put in the starter or the shop and have them put in a kill switch for the damn starter, cause it HAS to be what is sucking me dry.  Today it was so dead it couldn't even unlock the doors w/ the remote.

When I pulled in at mom's I noticed steam coming from the edge of the hood.  F.  Popped it and you can tell something kind of sprayed.  Mom called an uncle who came to help, once again I feel like a huge pain in the ass in a way that 1000 thank yous cannot cure.  All in all I got lucky, it was a broken clamp around a rubberish pipe.  With that broken I had antifreeze leaking out, hitting the fan belt and getting kicked up.  I had ENOUGH leaked out that I was pretty much dry.  Note that the vehicle was NOT running hot at that point.  I was a bit nervous coming back up the mountain, but things appear to have held.  *sigh*  It's always something, right?  At least this was an inexpensive something.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

I don't know what gives, but I had enough motivation (before my coffee) this morning to pull the tomato plants.  Over 120 more tomatoes off the vines and waiting to turn.  Quite a few were significantly smaller than the norm from those plants.  I wish I could have just two more months of nice weather across the course of the growing season.  Cursed PA.  I did leave the peppers in, as I am really hoping the couple that started there will grow a little more before I pop them.  So they, along with some of last week's pullings are crammed back into a garbage can to be hauled.  It's clear that Richland has stopped collecting branches and clippings, so I think if I stuff the garbage can every week until Christmas I should be able to get the garbage guys to take all of the clippings/branches, that have been building since the last snow storm.

Still walking every day.  Had a small drop in weight (4lbs), but that halted again too.  Lots of little things I need to get to.  Time to start a to do list and keep myself honest.

Mmm tomato branch smelling hands :)

Friday, September 14, 2012

I neglected to mentioned that the first major mound of tomatoes are sliced up and in the freezer, waiting for the remainder from the vines to make a batch of meat/meatball sauce.  To me, this was no small feet to squeeze in last night in addition to some running that needed done and finishing my walk.  I even got a letter of recommendation cranked out!  Yay for small advances!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

I feel so freaking busy!  It's been an ups and downs type of week.  I have to put it out there that I totally laid myself bare before the big guy upstairs earlier this week... just praying to help me figure out what I am suppose to do and let me hear his message.  By 10am the next day I had my answer... coverage.  Thank goodness.  I know I need to leave at some point, but I'm so not getting the warm fuzzy from other places to make me feel confident in needing to take desperate (read: unemployed) action.

This has happened a few times in my life where there is no doubt to me my prayers were answered loud and clear, I felt heard and feel I heard the answer loud and clear.  With this time also came the message to "plant seeds", so I am trying to be open to what all that might mean and to get on it.  It's like the cliche that you will find someone when you stop looking, same goes for getting in your own way when you just won't allow God to work for you.  It is way easier said than done to pray and put it down and not pick it back up.  If I could only stay focused on remaining in this state of mind and awareness/confidence.

I will continue to save to the best of my ability, but rest assured I went out and had a nice steak and a few martinis to relax and celebrate.  Let the Christmas shopping resume.  I may have found the perfect dress for the holiday party (since I might still get to go) on clearance for only $6 at Ross too.  Yay me.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Friday night I caught up with a few ppl for a bite to eat (just a little bite for me as I had some leftovers to attack prior).  As we sat on the deck and had a spider incident the note that you are always within 5 feet of a spider was made.  *shiver*  Needless to say, do you know how many freaking spiders I saw this weekend?  There was one in the bag of clothes I had packed up last year after loosing weight and countless others as I was pulling the nasturtiums and cutting things back out front to prepare for the fall.
No, I wasn't digging through the bag of fatter clothes because I gained weight back.  I haven't, it's been a year, and with much trepidation I am planning to haul them to Goodwill.  That means I needed a count of what was in the bag for tax purposes.  I also bagged up quite a few sweaters, leaving myself with very few, but they were all ones that were a little too snug or too worn or no longer in favor.  I should probably go through my drawers and closet too and get another bag together before dropping off.
Thanks to the work out front I have a BIG pile of russian sage blossoms and nasturtium seeds laying out to dry and the house smells quite pleasant.  I was a bit busy with all of that this weekend to the point that I didn't even get the vacuum run, shame on me.  The to do list seems painfully long and keeps leaving me finally settling in to try and run searches etc at 10pm or so, not very feasible or productive at that point.  Ok, I did take a nap on Saturday night, forgive me, but I was wiped.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Yesterday I went from oh crap, you have even less time covered than you thought to wait, you might be good for a year, in a matter of 15 minutes.  Needless to say, even more stuff is sitting in boxes that I haven't carried out yet.  I have to keep telling myself I'll figure it out and I'll be fine, but it's incredibly stressful.  I just keep up the prayer I had in NC and that was to be shown what I am suppose to do and to bring me peace about waiting for it.
In the mean time I filled my evening to the brim making cranberry bread (I had a hankering for pumpkin bread the night before but didn't have the right supplies to make it), a batch of lasagna with eggplant, and a pot of sauce with all of the farm and garden tomatoes that were ready to use.  That had me starting my walk a bit late, but when I was done my evening was mostly over and all there was left to do was give myself over to sleep. 

Thursday, September 06, 2012

This is a demonstration of why I am simply messed up on basic, low levels.  I get the comments on puppies, kittens, etc.... but human babies, sorry they are just not cute.  Fat and slimey is fat and slimey.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

I'm PMSy and just foul with little petty things.  Combine that with my overall (even when not PMSy) sense of doom and yea, I needed to get a good cry on.  I tried to get it started while out walking tonight.  Heaven knows even the rain held off knowing I just needed to get that time in.  Fortunately I did get some time in with someone worth getting time in with and got it going.  Yea, some sh*t just isn't fair (it remains that way) and other sh*t just compounds it.

Had the horrific realization today too that, duh, I wouldn't be able to buy another place w/o two months worth of pay stubs anyhow.  So that greatly impacts any potential to be elsewhere and gainfully employed.  A big downer and factor in a lot of things.  Did I mention it's not fair?  It definitely isn't fair that I've always tried to pay my own way and here I am fearing the future when others just continue milking off of others to have "what they get".  I still don't know what I'm being punished for, that's the frustrating part.  What did I do to deserve where I am?

I snapped yesterday, tired of waiting for promised help from others and heaved the bed from one room upstairs to the other and got a little organizing done.  The old desk is ready to be given away too, so there was some progress.  I'm not sore yet from the effort, but I suspect I will be tomorrow.  Given these types of situations I need to start only helping those that 1). help themselves and 2). step up when I actually confess I need assistance.  That list of people is quite short... Laws, Eggs, you're 110% safe on that short list.

I was up past 2am last night and tonight isn't shaping up to be more restful.  It's already 11:30, I need to shower, and it's storming - storming hard enough that not only is there thunder and lightning (a hindrance to my sleep) but it's knocking out the Directv, another major detriment to me falling asleep in an expedient manner.  I need another three day weekend, but I hate myself a bit for wishing for it given the current situation.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

The slight panic dreams have started.  Probably because it's officially September.  Four weeks could change everything.  I also realized if things go down one way... what's the point of making and freezing a whole ton of pasta sauce?

For the first time in quite a while I took yesterday "off" - as in no walk.  I had intended to after getting some housework done but before going out for a naughty evening of food and drinks, but the storms rolled in at just the wrong time.  Saffy gave me a heads up before I heard the thunder.  As the heat has cranked up again the windows are closed and the ac is on, so she heard it first outside and promptly began banging on the door.  Instead of a walk my thunder buddy and I cuddled on the couch for a little while.  No, we didn't sing the song.  It looks less than lovely out there today, so I guess I better get on the walk ASAP.  After the walk I need to do some cooking and maybe some job searches.  I want to box up more of my stuff, but it feels so wrong to shove it all away.

I did get several boxes worth of stuff out of the bathroom.  I can't believe how much of some stuff I have.  What is it about me that won't let me only buy another deodorant or shampoo when the one I presently have is almost out?  You won't ever see me on that hoarders show, but I clearly have some tendencies to stockpile when I spot things at a good price (and can't remember how much of something I have).  There is, of course, still my tons of different perfumes to contend with, that's just a way things will be, but I can focus on using up some of the little superfluous bottles that have just a little left.

I also scrubbed the bathroom and kitchen floors and trimmed back the bush and rose of sharon's out back, filling yet another garbage can of trimmings to take out front.  The pile is getting ridiculous Richland.  I don't get why my clippings have not been touched since April, you're chapping my ass.  Cranked out a few loads of laundry.  (YES, I actually put them away too, aren't you proud?)  Either way I feel like I accomplished a little yesterday.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

I had to turn the AC back on, and as warm as it is already this morning I'm betting I'll be struggling to force myself to get a walk in before a little wingy-ding gathering.  In the mean time, my deck needs swept, as it's full of vibrant fallen leaves.  Go figure.  After a pass to scoop, since the lawn is getting mowed this afternoon I'm going to get started inside.  I know it doesn't sound like much, but I'll be clearing the bathroom, boxing up full bottles of things and clearing some shelves off.  Maybe it will have a nice cascading effect.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Well, I've not been AS itchy, so that's good, but I do still have a bout of scratching as the time dwindles before the next cream application, like when I'm first getting out of bed in the morning.  I think it's fairly safe to say I am allergic to iron supplements.  Do any of you, my dear friends, already have a prescription for Loestrin FE 24 that would want two unopened packs?
It's been an interesting week.  I could have sworn I was getting the stink-eye at a company event on Tuesday night and then later this week obtained information that would support a reason for said stink eye.  This had me rather displeased as it's just another case of boys and their lies.  Lying to me has always been the straw that broke the camels back, but I broke my own rules w/ someone for way too long.  Seems now the lies aren't to me, but about me... and that is over, above, and beyond me just wanting to drop you like a hot box of crap.  Why do things revert back to 7th grade all too easily?

Monday, August 27, 2012

It is incredibly wrong how excited I was walking down the hall just now to go to the bathroom.  You're making a face, aren't you?  Well I can explain.  I simply couldn't wait to hike up my dress and full out scratch my belly like us women do our legs after removing panty hose that have been on for hours.  Just me?  You're either laughing or making another face right now, but I'll explain further.  I've been itching for more than a week now and it's not getting better: back, legs, stomach, neck, hands.  I thought it was just dry skin for a little while, but now I've gotten several blister-like lumps on my fingers/hand that are itchy as snot too.
So, my logical internal dialog was "what's changed that I am clearly having an allergic reaction to?"  The only thing I could come up with is the new birth control pills I started 2 weeks ago.  [Did I have a hissy fit about those on here? - they didn't have generics so I had to pay $120 for 3 friggin packs that autoprocessed through the mail order company and couldn't "get returned" - that made me happy.]  Why plus iron? - I have no clue.  I've NEVER had an issue w/ my blood not bouncing off the bottom of the cup like a dropping weight.  I think it was just a pet-pick of the doctor, definitely not necessary.  Anyhow, I thought at first it was silly to think I could be allergic, until I started googling around and discovered that yes, it is quite feasible to be allergic to the iron supplement!
I called my primary care physician to inquire on what to do, since it may be something totally unrelated and was directed to cease the iron pills.  In theory I can just finish out an old pack of other stuff I have, but if that fixes the situation then I have 2 1/2 months worth of expensive ass pills I can't even digest (out the window goes the cliche phrase of "eating my money")!   They did call me in a cream to aid the itch.  All this to just try and get my body to not hate me.  I guess that's an epic fail, right?  I guess the good news is, thanks to three glasses of the liquid blackberry crack from Chili's I'll probably make several return trips this afternoon.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I actually found a pair of the jeans I wanted at the mall!  Yes, _A_ pair.  Sad part is now I need a reason/place to wear them.  Life is just so exciting.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I just realized that job hunting is as bad as dating.  You spot something that looks good and you have some draw towards, so you send your resume (wal up and say hello), taking time to even write a nice cover letter (you put on a little extra makeup), and then you sit, waiting, and wonder how your skills (overall look) will appeal and align with what they're looking for.  In the mean time, the job you wouldn't have noticed in a town not on your list of places you're willing to relocate to starts emailing you and asking you to email your latest resume and give them a call to discuss an opportunity.
After you wait for a little while and realize you won't hear from the appealing job another place contacts you, this one is at least in the right area, not so much what you'd be into, but I guess the skills align... so you're willing to do a phone screen.  As the time leads up to the phone screen it feels like a burden that just bums you out.  You think "Ugh, I should have just told them it didn't sound like a fit!"  The call comes and goes, they make it sound like you'll be hearing back from them to go to the next step... and then they never call.   Now you're a bit peeved, thinking "hey, you don't get to diss me... I'm the one who didn't want to work for you!"  That bums you out, and then you think about all of the really good looking jobs that never bothered to call and you go back and forth between "their loss that they don't recognize what I could do for them" and "what's wrong with me and my resume? should I re-write? what do I need to learn?"
God forbid you get through the interview and are both enamoured with one another... it all seems great for a little while after you start, but then the long term relationship woes settle in.  Things get boring, you have your days when you wonder what you were thinking, but ultimately you stick around because it's just easier where you are.  Right now, I think I'm where I was in my marriage 10 years ago... sitting around waiting for the company to decide if they want me or not.  Unfortunately for me, as with my dating life, I am one of the few who still firmly believes you need to end one thing before you start another, but I'm terrified to pull the plug.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I wanna know why you can only find coated jeans in the european sizes (that means not big enough for me).  Seriously, I'm not tiny, but I'm not that huge.  H&M supposedly has my size, but is there an H&M around here?  I could order online, right, no, only if you're in Europe.  *shakes fist*  And while we're on the topic of european sizes, can we please just get to one numbering scheme for covering our butts?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

So, it turns out I have "bad veins".  I'd beg to argue and call them reticent to give up my life blood to your probing needle.  Meh.  I had an allergy doctor appointment first thing this morning, where I asked about testing for food allergies, thus the blood draw (what is that 6 so far this year???)  I'm definitely going to need to go more often for my regular shots as the two week interval is not working out for me.  I had a nice boomer headache yesterday afternoon which was the final straw above and beyond a bit of stuffiness, sneezing, and itchy eyes that started on Friday.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

It's been a pretty "successful" weekend, even though it's coming quickly to a close I can say that.  How do I count success for a weekend?  Well, it all comes down to how much I get accomplished.  There is always plenty more I could/should have done, but there is only so many hours in a day.  I got some rest, I did some walking (not as much as I'd like for the weekend - yet - the night is young, but it also just started to rain again), I visited with mom, I did some running, but most importantly I got some overdue cleaning done.

Yep, we could sit down and have a meal at my dining room table!  Not that I do.  Not sure why exactly I own a dining room table, but I digress.  The windows, windowsills, and wall under the dining room window are washed off too.  The wall you see because Vixen likes to lay there and it tends to get a little grimy over time.  The standard rest of the downstairs effort was put in too (vacuum, bathroom maintenance, and whatnot).

I did make a grocery run yesterday, finally, so I was able to make some yummy prepackaged (by Iggle) blue cheese burgers on the grill last night after polishing the farm eggplant (in garlic of course) and farm corn at lunch time, and making an apple slaw with the farm's cabbage to go with the burgers.  Today I took the meat to mom's and we had the standard way too large noon-time Sunday dinner.  Tonight I'm making stuffed peppers (again), this time cooking them a little longer before stuffing.  It's a decent recipe and with some tweaking I can see it becoming something new in my repertoire.  One of the peppers is the one and only pepper I've pulled from my garden, so I am eager to give it a try.  They were good leftover for lunch the next day last time too, so bonus.

While mom took her post-meal nap I headed out for part of my walk, which is really good - like I said, it's raining, and I suspect I wouldn't have gotten an hour and a half tonight as a result.  I really want to cry for Altoona.  It's a mess.  Everything is falling apart from the houses to the sidewalks, and it just isn't the home of my memories.  I walked up the alley towards Teej's old house as I did so many countless times in jr high and early high school, before those years on my path to the pool.  Headed down towards AAHS, stopping off at the mountain lion I use to climb and walking along 6th avenue around building B, under the bridge, and up past St. Mary's.  Up the hill to 2nd avenue and towards the pool where I made a loop - no one swimming today (could be the fact it was barely to 70 mid-day).  Back down first avenue, cutting across and down the alley towards the park I spent so many hours playing/swinging/sledding as a child the back around to 1st avenue to walk past my grandparents' old place and back home.

I also crossed some little tasks off today that don't really take a lot of time or effort, but give a good impact to the mental list and make it feel a bit lighter.  Now, if the rain would just stop!  I caught 10 minutes with Danika while the peppers cooked... easily another 45 is necessary today.  Hopefully things will clear by the time I finish eating.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I'm a bad mom, but now that I have some coffee in me I've remembered I should have sung happy birthday to Dani this morning.  I guess I know what I better be doing when I walk through the door tonight.  At least we already have the birthday gifts from our weekend run to Petco, I bet with those in hand I could make friends again.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

It's so good to already have my walk in for the day.  Saffy and I headed to UPJ to wander around and take some photos - you know, before everyone gets back and makes me sad.  There were a few ppl (prb RAs) moving in already.  Lots of construction on campus with blocked paths etc.  Oddly they've put in railings along some of the walkways up near Biddle.  What's the point?  So you have something nice and solid to slam your head into when you slip on the ice in the winter?  They also put parking meters in along the road that heads past the dorms to the STU and Library.  Sup w/ that?!  It makes me a bit weepy every time I head there, I miss it so much and want to return in the fall with them every single year.

My niece just headed off last weekend for her Freshman year at Texas Tech.  Just think, she was born the second half of my freshman year at UPJ!  All I can tell her is how much I hope she enjoys every moment there, that she does things without fear, has fun, works hard, and makes the most of this time.  If she's lucky, she'll miss the place in *grumble grumble* years too.

After an hour on campus Saf and I walked a wee bit more back here to get enough time in.  I've got to say this... if on more than one occasion, dear (extended) neighbor, your dog runs out of your yard straight at my dog and me that's prb a sign you need to buy what is called a LEASH.  When your dog gets hit by a car, I suspect you won't be as heartbroken as I would to have witnessed the result of your negligence.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

I accomplished a good bit today and it's not even 7pm, so I feel the need to catalog my accomplishments somewhere - as if that makes them more real.  As I previously posted one walk was in early today, then the trip at lunch time to celebrate with Dani.  From there I literally cleaned a bunch including the kitchen sink.  The bathroom floor, 3 loads of laundry (including my sheets and fur collecting blanket for the foot of the bed), vacuuming, some dusting, and then I headed outside.

I yanked out more of the clingy type growths that were too near my fence and gathered them up with the sticks and branches I was collecting outside the fence line after each storm and took them out front.  Then the craziness hit me.  One fact is - if I pull out some type of tool I go bat-shit crazy with it.  Out came the pruning tools and down came a whole mess more of those cursed bushes out front and the remnants of the way too tall flowers that are mostly died off.  I guess before I know it I will be out there pulling up nasturtiums and gathering their seeds.  Hopefully the township or garbage people will take some of the HUGE PILE that is out there to be hauled away first.  Honestly, the pile from the last snow storm of the year was never taken, so I don't know how lucky I'll get.  I've wanted a chipper for quite a while now, as one could make quick mulch of that huge pile, but I suspect it would just be another tool that would work for a brief period of time and die on me.

Now, the final thing I accomplished... watching the last two episodes of Farscape.  I'm sure I've watched them at some point in the past, but it's taken a year but I finally went through all of the DVDs.  Now to watch Peacekeeper Wars again, that might be on the docket for tonight.  I did promise myself another short walk... but I did shower after the outside work.

OH... and I picked the very first tomatoes and single pepper I had growing.  I think everything will start to shift to red at this point in tomato land.  As for the peppers, I have some blossoms just trying to turn into peppers.  Not sure how far they'll get before things get too cold.