Jan 30, 2008

St-st-still Here

What a difference between yesterday morning and today. Yesterday morning, temps were 46F. This morning temps were -4F. The snow that was called for yesterday never materialized, but the heavy winds did!

I had a blazing fire going in the fireplace last night to take the chill out of the air. I just love the smell of burning wood, and the sounds of a crackling fire. I didn't realize just how cold and windy it was outside UNTIL I had to go get more wood for the fire. OMG... The wind about blew me over. And boy, was it c-c-cold.

Since I didn't have class, I took the opportunity to stitch the evening away. I was surprised that my shoulder only hurt a little so I kept going. I managed to stitch quite a bit of the border on my snowman RR. Another evening like last night and I should have it finished up. Then I can start on the snowman. Can't wait!

The winds howled... and yes, I mean howled... all night long. It got so bad that I ended up moving from my bedroom to the living room to get some sleep. Since I didn't sleep well, I was slow going this morning. :(

Jan 29, 2008

Kids Do The Darndest Things

Even though I've read this elsewhere, I snagged this from Velda:

The boss wondered why one of his most valued employees had not phoned in sick one day. Having an urgent problem with one of the main computers, he dialed the employee's home phone number and was greeted with a child's whisper.

" Hello ? "

"Is your daddy home?" he asked.

" Yes . " whispered the small voice.

May I talk with him?"

The child whispered, " No ."

Surprised and wanting to talk with an adult, the boss asked, "Is your
Mommy there?" " Yes ."

"May I talk with her?" Again the small voice whispered, " No ."

Hoping there was somebody with whom he could leave a message, the boss asked,
"Is anybody else there?"

" Yes " whispered the child, " a policeman ".

Wondering what a cop would be doing at his employee's home, the boss asked,
"May I speak with the policeman?"

" No, he's busy ", whispered the child.

"Busy doing what?"
" Talking to Daddy and Mommy and the Fireman ," came the whispered answer.

Growing more worried as he heard a loud noise in the background through the
earpiece on the phone, the boss asked, "What is that noise?"

" A helicopter " answered the whispering voice.

"What is going on there?" demanded the boss, now truly apprehensive.

Again, whispering, the child answered, " The search team just landed a helicopter ."

Alarmed, concerned and a little frustrated the boss asked, "What are they searching for?"

Still whispering, the young voice replied with a muffled giggle... " ME ."

Oh wait... There's more. As it turns out *I* could've been that little child, or at least one with very similar tendencies. My mother told me this story about when I was around 3 years old. My parents and my aunt/uncle spent an untold amount of time SEARCHING for me... CALLING my name... with NO AVAIL. Searched the yard. Searched the shed. Searched the barnyard. Searched the corn field. Where was I? Oblivious to it all, I was BUSY! I was *busy* playing with my "babies" in the "toyroom", which was actually a makeshift toyroom/bedroom/laundry room. The door was closed so no one immediately thought to look in there.

BLIZZARD Warning?!?

That's right. Temps were in the lower 40's this morning and the National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning for southern WI and Illinois. Here in Illinois, the temps have dropped 15 degrees in the past two hours. It's been drizzling rain and now freezing. Ice is forming on the roadways and cars. Schools all around me have been closing since early this morning. I just got an automated message from my college that it will be closing at 3pm... so no class tonight, which is just FINE with me. Soon it will be snowing and with a BLIZZARD warning, I don't want to be out in it. In addition to snow, winds are purported to be 40-50mph. Yuck.

Jan 28, 2008

Warm Fuzzies

Tonight, I'm feeling thankful... full of warm fuzzies. I'm sure parents can relate to this. Granted, I'm not a parent... I'm the auntie. However, I have been like a second Mom to my soon-to-be 16year old niece. I've experienced all the "parenty" things with her (Thanks to my sister including me in their lives) from the day she was born until now. Fun were the days of barely sleeping when she was an infant, worried if she was OK and whether she needed anything... teething... temperatures... crawling... walking... eating cat food when I wasn't looking (LOL)... teaching her crafts... school plays... concerts... athletics.. and responsibility... drawing the line as a preteen... and now driving. Let's not forget the time I picked her up from daycare, and after we got home I asked where her backpack was. She had it when I signed her out, didn't have it when we got home. She looked at me with a look of dread on her face like "Uh oh, I'm in trouble." I couldn't help but laugh, at which point she laughed, and we got back in the car to go get her backpack. She's always had "her" room in my home. Granted, right now that room is full of my unpacked stuff and she lives an hour away from me so won't be using it much. So, why am I reminiscing and rambling on? When your kids become teenagers, it's rare that they want to hang out with Mom & Dad.

Yesterday afternoon, I received a text message from my niece asking if I would come to her basketball game that was in my city. My plan was to go walking after work, but how could I turn her down? During the team warm-up before the game, my niece yelled my name followed by a big grin and a wave. After the game, I talked to her for a few minutes and she asked which weekend over Spring break she could come and stay with me. For years, I've been dreading the day when the kids don't want to come over to stay. Some are already to that point. So, I feel special that my niece still wants and looks forward to coming to stay. :)

How's It Going?!?

There's nothing like stopping the big boss man dead in his tracks. All I did was exhuberantly ask: "How's It Going?!?" LOL

He stops in mid-stride, in the middle of the front office. Quizzical look on his face he, says: "Good. Why?" (I'm betting he thought I *needed* something.)

Sweet smile on my face, I say: "No reason. Just asking how it's going."

I'm such a sweetheart. ;-)

Monday Update 1/28/08

I did a little bit of stitching on the border of my RR. My theme is going to be snowmen. I'm starting out with the "Father Time" Vermillion Snowmen Series, and hope that the successive ones are just as cute. I've chosen a 14ct "gold" aida by DMC. It's a light tan color with flecks of gold in it. It's pretty, but very stiff. I'm hoping that during stitching, it will become more flexible. I've come to the realization with my neck and arm problems that I can't stitch for more than an hour at a time before my right arm starts to hurt REALLY bad. So much so that I have to lie down and relax in order for it to stop hurting. *sigh*

Get Fit Challenge
I didn't do quite as well this week as I did last week. I only managed to get aerobic exercise on 3 days, and strength training on 3 days. I always do well on the water drinking requirement. Lots of water on all 7 days. I need to get to the store so I can stock up on some more veggies.

Last week a ton of snow was dumped on us. Today, the temps are supposed to be 44F (right now it's 38F). Later, it's supposed to rain. Snow on Tues. Temps at 17F on Wed. What the...?!?

As I suspected, B-Law II is keeping me busy. There is a lot of reading and a lot cases that I need to be prepared for at the end of each chapter. Between reading, notetaking, and case studies, it takes me an average of 3 hours per chapter. Tonight, I plan on going to the college and finish up the semester in my Intro to Access class. The instructor hasn't graded all my work so far, but I'm not going to wait any longer. Over a week is long enough. LOL

Car (Again!)
Ah, ya gotta love it. NOT. I wanted to do some household shopping on Saturday afternoon, but guess what?! The battery in the car was dead again. So out came the charger. I worked on homework while it charged. By the time it was charged, I didn't feel like shopping. *sigh* This ONLY happens during the winter. I am SO ready for spring!

Jan 25, 2008

SBQ - Happy Dance

Have you had a happy dance yet this year? If so, tell us about it! (Or just point to the entry that mentions it.) If not, when do you predict it will be?

I'm debating whether to say I've had two Happy Dances. One for sure, which was Windows of Joy Ornament, details of which can be seen HERE.

Some consider it a Happy Dance when the stitching part is done, in which case I could count the second one: Pansy for Pam, which can be seen HERE. Personally, I don't count my projects as Happy Dances until they're "finished" into something. In this case, the tin topper.

Jan 24, 2008

The Big 4-0 Birthday

My day didn't start off all that great. I had a difficult time falling asleep last night. Around midnight, I decided to take a Tylenol PM. Big mistake. I woke up feeling crappy and groggy and still very tired. So, I called in to work and took the day off. I went back to sleep for several more hours. Once I woke up, I headed out to shovel yet MORE snow. Have I said: I am so ready for spring!? I received a call from T wishing me a happy birthday. I was surprised he remembered. I also received birthday wishes from M (the one who's from the suburbs of Chicago). My parents had me over for a birthday dinner. It was good. My brother called and left me a voicemail... singing happy birthday to me. LOL, at least it sounded like him so I hope it was. I didn’t recognize the number he was calling from. Yesterday, my sister took me out to lunch for my birthday. I did managed to get some stitching in for a RR I'm participating in (first one ever so I hope it works out). Overall it was a nice day, but uneventful for a milestone birthday. That’s OK, though, since I don’t look or feel like I’m 40.

Jan 22, 2008

Back with a Vengeance

Is this payback for the 40F weather we had a couple weeks ago?!? Winter is back with a vengeance.

Last weekend we had -25F windchill temps.

Yesterday, it snowed all day. After I got off work, I parked across the street so I could shovel the incline to my driveway in order to get to the garage. Thankfully, the snow was light... but still... it took me an hour. At that point there was at least 5" of snow. Once I was done shoveling, I walked across the street to get my car. What do I find?

The Packer Fan across the street decided to snow blow his sidewalk... onto MY car! There was 2" of packed snow on my car that I had to clear off.

Then it snowed all night.

Between 4am and 5:30am this morning, I hear the snow plows no less than 6 times. I thought to myself: OMG, how MUCH snow is out there?!?! So, I get up and get ready to do some shoveling. Out the door and I can't even see my steps! There had to be at least 10" of snow on the part of the driveway I didn't shovel last night. Poor Celeste bounced and jumped her way through the snow to the backyard where I kicked open a spot for her to do her "thing".

I spent a little over an hour this morning shoveling the incline again. There was just as much, if not more than what I shoveled last night. Again, it was light but *gosh* there was a LOT! After the incline was done, I decided to call the plow guy to do the rest. There was just too much snow where I didn't shovel last night. I noticed my neighbor called a plow, too. Both plows ended up pushing the snow out our driveways and all the way across the street. I'm sure that was a trick seeing as I live on a busy street!

Most of the schools in the area counties are closed. Only a few delayed school for 1-2 hours. The college is still open, though... So I guess I'll be going to class tonight.

There is an upside to all this: I'm developing quite the biceps (LOL), getting good aerobic exercise... and today the sun is shining very brightly! Any time the sun shines, it makes for a beautiful day.

I am so ready for Spring...

REVISED: I spent 45 minutes of my lunch hour shoveling snow to clean up what the plow guy couldn't get. I STILL have a bunch to go.

I am so ready for Spring...

Jan 21, 2008

Monday Update 1/21/08

Movie Monday
On Saturday, T and I went to see "The Bucket List" with Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman. It was a good flick.

Two elderly men, auto mechanic Carter Chambers (Freeman) and hospital-corporation head Edward Cole (Nicholson), discover they are both terminally ill with cancer. Sharing a hospital room, they become friends and decide to fulfill their personal desires through "The Bucket List" before they "kick the bucket". Bankrolled by the wealthy Cole, they sky dive, race each other in classic cars, and take Cole's private jet around the world. They see the Egyptian pyramids, the North Pole, and laugh until they cry. In the end, Chambers dies on the operating table and Cole, inspired by his friend, goes to make up with his daughter realizing life is too short. The last shot shows the continuation of the first. It shows Cole's assistant (Sean Hayes from Will & Grace) climbing the mountain and visiting Chambers' grave and placing Cole's ashes in the small tomb along with Chambers'.

Car Woes (again)
Anyone who's been following my blog for a while knows the trouble I have with my car in the winter. If I don't start it AT LEAST once a day, the darn thing goes dead. I've replaced the battery 3 times, and have had it in the shop where I was told they can't figure out what's wrong... and they don't want to just start replacing parts in an effort to get lucky. Plus, it ONLY happens during the winter. So anyway, since we took T's car on Saturday to the movies, my car sat in the garage all weekend. It didn't occur to me to start it until last night. Guess what? It wouldn't start. So in sub zero temps, out comes the battery charger and away we go! I'm just glad I thought about it last night instead of this morning right before work...

I've been playing catch-up in B-Law II since classes started last week. On the first night of class, the instructor lectured on two chapters we hadn't even read. So, I've spent every night reading each of those chapters plus the two chapters that will be discussed this week. Plus, at the end of each chapter are cases that we need to be prepared to discuss in class. Last night, I spent at least 3.5 hours on one chapter plus cases. Three chapters down, one to go!

Go Away!
*grumble* I woke up this morning with a killer migraine. I stumbled to the bathroom and took a couple of Tylenol (mistake-didn't help), called the secretary at work to let her know I'd be in late, then went back to bed. When it was clear the Tylenol wasn't working, I took Excedrin Migraine and started to get ready for work. By the time I left the house, the headache was tolerable... only felt like my eye wanted to pop out of it's socket. My guess is that it was caused by the stress of trying to get all my homework done for this week. *sigh*

Jan 19, 2008

Get Fit... Week One

Brrrr, it is cold out! When I woke up this morning, the themometer said it was -10F. Forecasters say with the windchill factor, it will feel like -25F.

I started off the week by comparing last year's body composition analysis with this year's. I was thrilled to learn:

Body Fat went down 4.9%
Weight went down 8 lbs
BMI went down 3.7%
Fat Weight went down 11 lbs

I've managed to do aerobic activity and strength training 5 days this week.

Jan 16, 2008

Sniffling Student Strikes Again

Say that three times! When I arrived at the lab last night, it was empty. I unpacked my book and sat down to finish up the assignment from Monday night. Shoot! I left my memory stick (with my homework on it) in the car. The lab assistant said he'd watch my stuff while I ran out to get the stick. Walk into the lab and guess what?? The sniffler was back... and guess what else? He sat right across from me! Luckily, I only had 45 minutes to spend in the lab before I had to be in my Business Law II class. In that amount of time, I managed to finish the assignment -and- complete the first quiz. Two days into the semester and I'm halfway done with the Beginning Access class.

I get to B-Law and find out that not only is the instructor teaching B-Law, he's also teaching Legal Environment in Busines... at the same time! This should be fun. While the first night's lecture was interesting, I think this class will be a lot of work for me if I want to do well. Time will tell.

Jan 15, 2008

Joys of a College Student

It’s 5:20pm as I pull into the college parking lot. As usual, it’s jammed packed so I end up parking on the far side and hoof it to the building where the lab is located. I arrive to see I could have my pick of computers... except for one student, the lab is empty.

I choose a terminal facing the lone student. I think he’s the same guy people were making fun of in my ecology class, but I’m not sure. As I’m fumbling my way through my Access assignments, I continuously hear the sucking of snot. Yeah, gross eh? Imagine sitting across from it for almost 3 hours! I kept thinking to myself: “You’re a freakin grown man, go blow your nose!” A few times I looked up from my computer screen to see him rubbing his nose. (Ewww!) Then touch the computer keyboard! Ack. Note to Self: Bring Lysol sanitizing wipes next time.

When I couldn’t stand the sound effects anymore, I put on my headphones and listened to the music I have uploaded to my phone. That MP3 player comes in handy!

At 8:10pm, the lab assistant kicks us out. I guess the lab closes at 8pm. Oops.

As I exit the building, I observe the barren parking lot. Figures. I also notice that it’s extremely COLD. Halfway to the car, I was started to shiver and made sure not to breathe too deeply so my asthma wouldn’t flare up. What was I thinking?!? Only an insane person would park way out in the boon-docks. Oh yeah, didn’t have a choice. Note to self: Take off work early to get a good parking space. No wait, that might not be a good idea. It was like the devil and the angel sitting on my shoulders having a conversation. Maybe try a different parking lot next time.

Much to my surprise, I managed to get 2½ weeks worth of assignments done in 3 hours. If I only had about 15 more minutes, I would’ve been able to finish the last assignment before the quiz. Maybe I can do that before my Business Law class tonight.

Jan 13, 2008

Tin Topper SAL

I joined Nancy and Rita from STO in a tin topper SAL. I've never made one before, so I thought it would be a fun thing to do. So, over the weekend I started stitching my tin topper using the chart I just purchased from the new shop. It's called A Pansy for Pam. I totally changed all the colors to hand-dyed threads I've never used before: Cottage Colors (very luxurious), Carrie's Creations, and The Dye Is Cast. I used DMC to do the backstiching. Using light sand 32ct Belfast Linen, this is what I came up with 7 1/2 hours later:

Jan 12, 2008

The Stitching Shop

A new LNS opened up just three weeks ago... only a few blocks from my house! Right now it's open only on the weekend, so I took advantage of the opportunity and made a visit. It's a nice cozy little shop that carries a lot of charts, but not so many that the shop is cluttered. Also in stock are Weeks Dye Works, Crescent Colors, Krenik Silk Mori, DMC, and Mill Hill beads. There were also lots of various fabrics. Every model in the shop was stitched and framed by the owner herself. The owner is about my age and was very friendly, and helpful. She had her laptop with her, so she let me log into my multiply albums and she took a look at my finishes. :D I came home with:

Pansy for Pam Tin Topper chart by Samplers & Such

Sweet Little Berries chart by Little House Needleworks

Quakers Rule chart and ruler by Miladys Needle

In addition, the shop owner is going to order the fabric for Quakers Rule and Stitched With Love chart by Plum Pudding Designs.

Windows of Joy

Tada! My first finish of 2008 is an ornament from the Dec issue of Gift of Stitching. It's Windows of Joy by Primrose Needleworks. Using 18ct fiddlers aida with DMC threads, it took me 4.5 hours to stitch. I changed the colors of the snowflakes to lighter shades of blue instead of the tan and white called for in the chart. I also used Kreinik blending filament with the lightest shade of blue to give it a little sparkle. Finishing it into an ornament took about another hour. The pre-made red and gold cording sets off the design really well.

Jan 8, 2008

SBQ - Starting The New Year Off Right

Are you starting something new to celebrate the New Year or participating in "Guilt Free January?" If so, what are you planning on starting?

I started my new year off by working on Mime, a 15+ year old UFO. I try to keep my stitching as guilt-free as possible by working on whatever I want, whenever I want. Otherwise, for me, it takes all the fun out of it.

Did you receive any stitching-related gifts for the holidays?

Technically, yes. As part of the 12 Days of Christmas exchange I did with my sister and niece, my niece got me a stamped kit with butterflies. Other than that, I didn't get anything stitchy-related.

What was your favorite finish of 2007?

I'd have to say my favorite finish is the Victorian Pansies Scissor Fob.

All my 2007 finishes can be seen HERE.


The other night, T and I were talking on the phone. Through the course of conversation, we got to talking about stalkers. After he questioned me, I admitted that I had been the victim of a stalker when I was younger (like 18 years ago). I had been stalked for almost two years, and because of that I am very cautious about personal information I give out, and to whom. Also because of this, I have trust issues when it comes to men... Pretty much they have to earn it through actions. I don't blindly believe what they say.

Afterwards, I got a funny feeling that I gave out too much information. Is it wrong to be upfront when asked?

Say It Isn't So...

Over the past several weeks, I'd been driving by this storefront just a few blocks from my house. At first, I thought it was a quilt shop. Then the other day, I saw a sign in the window that said "Cross Stitch, DMC, Hand-dyed threads" Whoa! Back up the pony...

Could it be true? An LNS in my city? There hasn't been one of those here for at least 15 years. So while I was out on my walk, I made it a point of walking by the storefront.

Sure enough, it's an honest to goodness LNS! The Stitching Shop (imagine that!). It's only open for a few hours on Sat and Sun, but you can bet I'm going to go check it out! It'd be great to connect with some local stitchers. :)

Productivity Keeps Me Outta Trouble

After a productive day at work, I came home and continued the productivity. What?!? Am I crazy? Apparently so.

Getting Fit
Once again, I went on a power walk. I wasn't enjoying it too much in the neighborhood to the southwest of my house... Too dark, no sidewalks (so I had to walk on the street), and the crazy drivers would wait until the last minute to swerve around me. Yes, swerve! Like we were playing chicken as to who would move first. I ended up walking 4.6 miles last night. By the time I was done, I could definitely feel the "burn" in my legs and boo-tay!

Cooking for One
A while back, a lady on Freecycle was giving away a bunch of frozen food. Not being picky, I asked for it. There were a couple bags of fileted bass. Last night, I made baked Parmesan Crusted Bass and Garlic Mashed Potatoes. It was sooo good! I have plenty left over for lunch and dinner tonight.

Smoking Needle
Do I smell something? Oh yes, it's my needle. I actually was able to get some stitching in. Woo Hoo! I started a new project, an ornament, for the Ornament SAL on the ILCS group. I'm about 1/2 way done with it. Here's what I accomplished in 2.5 hours:

Tornado Hits!

In the 60 years Illinois has been recording weather, only two tornadoes have occurred in the month of January. Yesterday’s was one of them. The other was in 1950.

Yesterday afternoon, a tornado hit a town two counties east of where I live. Six homes were destroyed, as well as a well known apple orchard where families I know have visited over the years. Six thousand people were without power, and as of this morning 600 are still going without. News reports say that only two people were injured. One of my coworkers believes they drove under the clouds (just a county east) that created the tornado… on their way home from O’Hare Airport. Interesting enough, a woman from the city that was hit sent a message to the Freecycle group informing everyone of how she and her kids spent time in the basement, waiting.

Diary of a Snow Shoveler

I can totally relate to the following!

December 8
6:00 PM. It started to snow. The first snow of the season and I stood by the window watching the huge soft flakes drift down from heaven. It looked like a Grandma Moses Print. I love snow!

December 9
I woke to a beautiful blanket of crystal white snow covering every inch of the landscape. What a fantastic sight! Can there be a more lovely place in the whole world? Shoveled for the first time since I was a kid… and didn’t know it was actually work. This afternoon, the snowplow came along and covered up the sidewalks and closed in the driveway, so I got to shovel again.

December 12
The sun has melted all our lovely snow. Such a disappointment. My neighbor tells me not to worry, we'll definitely have a white Christmas. No snow on Christmas would be awful! Bob says we'll have so much snow by the end of winter, that I'll never want to see snow again. I don't think that's possible. Bob is such a nice man, I'm glad he's my neighbor.

December 14
Snow lovely snow! Eight inches last night. The temperature dropped to -20. The cold makes everything sparkle so. The wind took my breath away, but I warmed up by shoveling the driveway and sidewalks. This is the life!
The snowplow came back this afternoon and buried everything again. I didn't realize I would have to do quite this much shoveling, but I'll certainly get back in shape this way.

December 15
Twenty inches forecasted for today. Sold my car and bought a 4x4 Blazer. Bought two extra shovels. Stocked the freezer. Maybe I should stock up on wood for the fireplace in case the electricity goes out. That's silly. I’m not in Alaska, after all.

December 16
Ice storm this morning. Fell on my butt on the ice in the driveway putting down salt. Hurt like heck.

December 17
Still way below freezing. Roads are too icy to go anywhere.
Electricity was off for five hours. I had to pile the blankets on to stay warm. Guess I should've stocked up on wood. I can't believe I'm freezing to death in my own living room.

December 20
Electricity's back on, but had another 14 inches of the damn stuff last night. More shoveling. Took all day. Darn snowplow came by twice.
Tried to find a neighbor kid to shovel, but they said they're too busy playing hockey. I think they're lying. Called the only hardware store around to see about buying a snow blower and they're out. Might have another shipment in March. I think they're lying. Bob says I have to shovel or the city will have it done and bill me. I think he's lying.

December 22
Bob was right about a white Christmas because 13 more inches of the white crap fell today, and it's so cold it probably won't melt till August. Took me 45 minutes to get all dressed up to go out to shovel and then I had to go to the bathroom. By the time I got undressed, went to the bathroom, and dressed again, I was too tired to shovel. Tried to hire Bob who has a snow blower, for the rest of the winter; but he says he's too busy. I think the jerk is lying.

December 23
Only 2 inches of snow today. And it warmed up to 0 degrees.

December 24
6 inches. Snow packed so hard by snowplow, I broke the shovel. Thought I was having a heart attack. If I ever catch the man who drives that snowplow, I'll drag him through the snow by his nose and beat him to death with my broken shovel. I know he hides around the corner and waits for me to finish shoveling and then he comes down the street at 100 miles an hour and throws snow all over where I've just been!
Tonight I thought about singing Christmas carols and opening some gifts, but I was too busy watching for the snowplow.

December 25
Merry -bleeping- Christmas! Twenty more inches of the slop tonight. Snowed in. The idea of shoveling makes my blood boil. I hate the snow! Then the snowplow driver came by asking for a donation and I hit him over the head with my shovel. Do I have a bad attitude? If I have to watch "It's A Wonderful Life" one more time, I'm going to throw the TV out the window.

December 26
Still snowed in. Why the heck did I ever move here?

December 27
Temperature dropped to -30 and the pipes froze. Plumber came after 14 hours of waiting for him, he only charged me $1,400 to replace all my pipes.

December 28
Warmed up to above -20. Still snowed in.

December 29
Ten more inches. Bob says I have to shovel the roof or it could cave in. That's the silliest thing I ever heard. How dumb does he think I am?

December 30
Roof caved in. I beat up the snow plow driver. He is now suing me for a million dollars -- not only for the beating I gave him but also for trying to shove the broken snow shovel up where the sun don't shine. 9 inches predicted.

December 31
I set fire to what's left of the house. No more shoveling.

January 8
Feel so good. I just love those little blue pills they keep giving me. Why am I tied to the bed?

Jan 7, 2008

Progress Bars

Beth in MD asked me how to add progress bars to her blog.

Adding progress bars to your blog’s sidebar really isn’t difficult.

You have to either 1) create your progress bar graphics, or 2) use graphics that are already created. I opted for #2 since I didn’t have time to create new ones. Click HERE for instructions on how to create PB graphics.

Upload the graphics to an image hosting program. I use Photobucket. It’s free, and easy to use.

Upload WIP and Progess Bars to your sidebar in blogger.

At the blogger dashboard, click on Layout for your blog. Then click on Add A Page Element in the area of your sidebar. When the Add A Page Element screen comes up, select HTML/Javascript by clicking on Add To Blog. A new screen will pop up. In the Title box, I put “Works In Progress”. In the content box, add the following:

[center][a]Japanese Garden[/a][br/]
[img alt="Image hosted by Photobucket.com" src="http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j218/mearit/JG3a.jpg"/][br/]
[img alt="Image hosted by Photobucket.com" src="http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j218/mearit/ProgressBar10.gif"/]
[img src="http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j218/mearit/Mime-WhatItsSupposeToLookLike.jpg"/][br/]
[img alt="Image hosted by Photobucket.com" src="http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j218/mearit/ProgressBar65.gif"/][/center][/center][/ul]

IMPORTANT: In the code above, replace ALL [ with < -and- ] with >.

In case the above is not self-explanatory, I’ll try to explain. On the 2nd and 9th lines, are the titles of my WIPs. Change them to yours accordingly. On lines 4 and 10, are the source codes given at Photobucket when you upload your WIP pics. Just copy and paste accordingly. Lines 6 and 12 are the source codes for the progress bars you uploaded to Photobucket. Again, copy and paste accordingly.

NOTE: Whenever I want to change the progress bar percentage, I just edit the HTML code. See where the numbers are on Lines 6 and 12? (10 and 65) I just change it to a number I know I have for a percentage bar. It keeps from having to go to Photobucket and doing the copy/paste routine.

Keep in mind that you have to be careful with the sizes of the WIP pics you want to put in your sidebar. If they’re too big, they’ll distort your blog and it won’t be pretty. It took me several tries before I got the right size. I keep my side bar pics about 2x2” (or less) at 72dpi.

Click Save Changes. And you’re done!

Monday Update 1/7/08

What do I have to say on this first official Monday of the year?

Crisis of the Day
The safety pin that's holding my slacks up is getting on my nerves. For the umpteenth time this morning, it has popped open and I spend a minute or so re-fastening it so that my pants stay up where they belong. The weight I lost over the summer has made a lot of my pants hang down where they don't belong. I suppose if I wanted to be a member of the 'hood, that'd be OK, but I prefer the crotch of my pants to be up where it belongs. LOL I guess I should invest in larger safety pins.... or new slacks.

Movie Monday
I saw "P.S. I Love You" over the weekend. Film critics don't give it high ratings, but I really liked the movie. Before seeing it, I thought it would be a tear-jerker movie. It's actually very funny, with a couple of heart-tugging moments. More about the movie:

A sweet, smart Manhattanite (Hilary Swank) loses her husband (Gerard Butler) to cancer. The movie starts out with a long couples argument about everything: apartments, careers, money, starting a family... between a spirited Irishman Gerry (who rarely "plans" anything) and his real-estate wife Holly (who is all about working a "plan")... and afterwards they have great make-up sex, with Butler doing an hilarious striptease in boxers and suspenders.

From there, the movie jumps ahead to Gerry's funeral, where we find out he died from a brain tumor. Holly goes into mourning, holing up in her messy apartment, watching old movies. Before his death, Gerry wrote Holly a series of letters that she received over several months (almost a year) to help her cope and move forward. He even planned a vacation for her to Ireland.

Holly's new life includes potential romance with Irish singer William (Jeffrey Dean Morgan – Who is VERY HOT, HOT, HOT!). Then there’s bartender Daniel (Harry Connick Jr.), a semi-love interest who claims not to have a filter, blurting out anything that pops in his head -- no matter how insensitive or rude. The film focuses on Holly's immediate loss, but it also introduces Holly's emotional damage from her father's abandonment, as well as her friend Denise's (Lisa Kudrow) pursuit for the perfect man.

If you want a moving story about love and grief, this movie didn't go down that road. It's a romantic comedy featuring hard-bodied leads in their skivvies and naked butt shots, as well as humorous one-liners.

Getting into a Routine
It's that time of year again... Time for the GET FIT CHALLENGE sponsored by the local hospital and health clubs. For the past three years, my firm has sponsored a team and this year is no exception. I go into for initial health screening this week. To get into the groove, I started using my exercise tapes (The Firm series) last week. Yesterday morning I walked 3.5 miles. Anyone ever use Carmen Electra Striptease Aerobic DVD's?

Wacky Weather
Who'da thunk that during the first week of January, we would hit record high temps? Yesterday and today, temps got up to 60. I think the last record high was back in 1949 @ 49F. There is a tornado watch in effect for all of northern Illinois until 9pm. Tornado in January?!?

Jan 3, 2008

Today is MY day!

Every Thursday, the administrative assistant's DH comes to pick her up for lunch. Today he says to me: "You look really nice today! Not that you don't normally, but you look extraordinarily good today." AA then says: "Yes, your hair looks really nice."

Extraordinarily good, eh? I'll take that compliment!

At the PO, I was halfway up the stairs and a man came out the door. He stood holding the door open for me. Thank you! (Not many who hold doors open anymore.)

Then... as I was leaving the PO, a man came up the stairs using a cane. The nice person that I am, I held the door open for him. He said to me: "Thank you, Miss"

Miss? Not ma'am... but Miss!! I'll take that compliment, too!

Yes, today was MY day. And yes, I take my little thrills where I can get them. LOL

Jan 2, 2008

Mime Progress 1/1/08

Stitched Ornaments

Before I put away my Christmas decorations for 2007, I took a pic of all the ornies I stitched over the years as well as the ones others have stitched for me.

Who's Idea Was This?

I would’ve never dreamed that it would be SO difficult finding a good restaurant to eat at on New Year’s Day. After a dozen phone calls, I found one restaurant open… and not a good one at that. Most pubs were closed, too. When T arrived for our evening out, I said: “Who’s bright idea was it to go out to eat on New Year’s Day?” He said it was mine. LOL (It was his!) We ended up driving all over town looking for a decent place to eat. Ended up at a nice Italian restaurant that I’d been to before. Ambiance was nice. Food was so-so this time. Conversation was good. He’s witty and keeps me on my toes! After dinner, we stopped at Blockbuster and picked up “License to Wed” with Robin Williams. It had some funny parts in it, but overall it was so-so. Another enjoyable evening.

Jan 1, 2008

Happy New Year!

12:55am.... Phone rings. Eyes still closed, I think to myself: Who the heck could be calling me?

Sleepily I answer the phone: "Hello...."

"Happy New Year!!!" I hear from the other side.

T had just gotten off work, and decided to call to wish me a HNY. (Was I just saying something about him not calling me? LOL) He teased me about not being able to stay up until midnight for the new year. Hey... a girl needs her beauty rest.