Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Santa's Last Legs

Every year my mother in law gives me (us) a Santa. This year through stupid luck I ended up not with the Santa that was handed me, but with a Santa I really liked. This morning I woke up and found his feet. After looking around, I found the rest of him.

Double Amputee

Although it may look simple to glue him back together, it is not. I have devised a repair plan and by the time I am done implementing it, I will have invested enough time and materials to make it one very expensive Santa.

And how did Santa end up dismembered? I wasn't a witness but my number one suspect is the plant killing Skittles.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My Yoville House

Welcome to my cozy Yoville house! When you first walk in the door you are right smack dab in my living room. It is decorated for the holidays. I don't have a real tree because I'm cheap and haven't worked in a long time.

Living Room

When I visited Yoville to take these pictures, my parrot, Polly, had X's for eyes. Evidently I needed to feed her. She's fine now.

The door behind me on the right leads to my kitchen.


Another door leads into my bedroom. Be quiet! I am taking a nap!


My bathroom is off my bedroom. I love how they pixelated my lower half when I sat on the pot. This is the first time I sat on my Yoville pot. It's a wonder I'm still alive!

Don't Look!

Look at my bedroom again. See that book case? It is really a secret door that leads to my library. The room is a reward I won for doing Yovillian things.

My Secret Library

Back through the secret bookcase door, through the bedroom, back to the living room and into the hallway.


The room off the hallway was another reward for doing Yovillian things. It is supposed to be a bathroom but since I had so much furniture and way too many fireplaces, I turned it into a sitting room.

Sitting Room

Ahh.... I love my Yoville house. Actually, it's an apartment. Houses cost REAL MONEY. Forget that noise. One of my FB & Yoville friends has a modern beach house with every one of the many rooms stuffed to the gills with expensive furniture. I'm thinking she is giving virtual blow jobs to live like that.

Not me! I don't even go to work anymore since they turned the furniture factory into a bakery. I have to pay to buy ingredients and mix them up and stick them in the oven. If I don't visit Yoville in a timely manner, my baked goods burn and I am screwed. Plus I have to PAY to CLEAN THE FRIGGIN OVENS whether I burn something or not.

I get enough of that in real life, thank you very much. They had better start making virtual life fun. I guess I can always visit my apartment and hide out in my secret library.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Catching Up

I have been lax in posting. Here is a short version of the last few months.


It sucked. It was cold and wet. On Columbus Day we had this:

Happy Columbus Day

October continued its cold wetness and brought us to --


November was warm, dry and sunny. Farmers finished what they couldn't do in October. Plants were confused.

Bloom in November

We survived stuffing ourselves on Thanksgiving and the next night was the party H had planned and for which I was struggling to finish altering the vintage dress.

Vintage Dress

That photo does not do the dress justice. It looked fabulous hung on the frame of lovely H. I did not get any pictures of H in her great aunt's dress. We got to the party, she was busy, the food got laid out, we ate and then ...

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Let's just say Crab and I missed the rest of the party, the cake, and the photo ops. Crab is still alive, none the worse for the wear.

November also brought many frustrations (see previous posts). Through the help of my personal hero, I finally came through those. It was a long, tough haul for someone not as bright as the most awesome guru of geekness. The trojan is vanquished! The queen reigns! I so ♥ you Mush!

My Hero

My hero will get a present in the mail as soon as I get around to it, which may not be real soon because now we are in


December has brought us snow, blizzards, fog, arctic temps and crap since it began. My mother called today to tell me Christmas at her house is CANCELED. H told me that, barring a Christmas miracle, she is not going to make the journey down. I am sad that my H won't be here, yet grateful she will not be on the interstate with the idiots.

Next year: Nothing but greatness! After the spring thaw, that is.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Every Thing I Touch

Every thing turns to S&%# pretty fast. Just a warning. Do not come near me and get the S&%# cooties!!

I'm trying, I really am. But it's a baby step forward and two giant steps back.

On the other hand, I am reading (mostly when I wake up in the middle of the night and cannot get back to sleep) Barbara Kingsolver's latest novel and am loving it to death. I want to swim in her brain until I drown. I want to own this book so I can highlight it, underline passages and write in the margins.

But mostly I want to sleep straight through for at least 7 hours. And own this novel. And The Poisonwood Bible. Best. Book. Ever. But then, I'm not finished with The Lacuna.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


This is probably the least troubling thing that happened to me today.

Add to that the fact I cut my finger picking up pottery shards and it is still the least troubling thing that happened today. So Snotty Pants dodged a bullet of retribution there.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Needle In A Haystack

All that glitters is not gold, I discovered as the teeny tiny screw from the bobbin casing fell with an audible plink onto my sewing room floor. Glittery things included sewing pins, bent sewing machine needles and actual glitter off of fabric from an old project. Even dead asian lady beetle parts sparkle when you shine a flashlight on them.

The haystack consisted of piles of thread snippets, fabric scraps and long tails of fabric cut off by the serger.

See the screw? That tiny thing?

Teeny Tiny Screw

There It Is!

Two bright sides to this -- I found the screw and got the floor swept. Now to finish altering that vintage dress for H. She will look stunning.

Thursday, October 08, 2009


A couple of weeks ago on a lovely warm and sunny day, a bird flew into my clean kitchen window with a loud ker-thunk. I ran outside to tend to an injured bird or bury a dead one, but there was no bird to be found, just this print it left behind.

Bird Print

The sun is set on a beautiful day yesterday. It was a beautiful day because the sun was out, it didn't rain and the temps were above 65 degrees.

How quickly my idea of a beautiful day has changed. On September 27 the high was in the 80's, the sun was brilliant and a cold front was ready to descend on us. I took a drive and snapped some photos, wanting to keep warm and sunny September with me until spring.

Colorful Weirdness

Barn Quilt


Historical Marker



Black Horses, Black Birds

My Favorite Dam

More Fishing

There is snow (snow I said!) in our forecast for this weekend. That makes me feel like the many coons I encountered on my sunny day road trip.

Ker-thunk, Ker-thunk

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bye, Bye Summer

Summer gave BFE the best weather ever. I can't remember the last time I turned on the air conditioner and I haven't been tempted to turn on the furnace. For a month or more it didn't rain, wasn't windy and the day temps were in the high 70's to low 80's with night temps in the area of 55. As far as I'm concerned, summer doesn't get any better.

My gourds agreed. They took over the trellis, the fence the trellis lays against, the bushes a ways down the fence and the fence that runs perpendicular to the trellis. The vines are loaded with birdhouse gourds. I'm so excited about the crop that I don't care that I only harvested one sick cucumber and the other variety of gourd that I thought I planted never appeared. Next year: birdhouses galore. Also next year: better gourd / cucumber planning and planting.

Loaded Trellis

I planted Mexican sunflowers again this year. The butterflies love them and this year the bumblebees have been thick.

Boo! Bee!

Pretty Butterfly -- Don't know what kind

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Before the season officially changed from Summer to Fall a friend and I went to Spencer to the Clay County Fair. Captain Crab worked that fair for years and every year little H and I would go up and stay in The Hotel, park on the fairgrounds, get into and hang out at the fair for free.

It has been years since Crab worked the fair and therefore years since I've been there. I was taken aback by the changes there. One thing that didn't change was my route and the views I so enjoy.

Heading in to Gillette Grove

The first thing that threw me was the Sky Glider. Just like at the state fair! We took that first so I could get my bearings -- things had changed that much.

View from the top

Some things you can always count on

More things you can count on -- though I saw cabbages almost as big as some of these pumpkins

I was surprised at the new buildings. They had a convention center which was filled with shills. I like fair shills as much as the next person, but we walked through every building and every building that didn't have animals or trains in it was full of or surrounded by vendors selling CRAP. Not that I wasn't tempted. I really, really want an infrared sauna.

Vince couldn't make it. Something to do with parole violations.

The old train building was replaced with this incredibly large structure crammed with an intricate tableau of railroading.

A whole lot of choo choo

There were cities, small towns, a replica of the fair itself, a circus, a replica of Arnold's Park (which has no meaning to anyone who hasn't been near the Iowa Great Lakes), areas of industry, milling, mining, farms, and fishermen in row boats, barges, changing seasons... Gee, I didn't realize I liked tiny stuff so much.

Fire department in a snow covered town

The weather was on the warm side. We walked, sought food, looked for a seat in the shade and started the process over again. We figured we spent 6 hours walking in the heat and dodging the same bitch with a stroller for most of those 6 hours. Hey lady! Get a clue! Your infant is not enjoying broiling at the fair!!

Then we headed home and went through a small town only slightly off the track. I'd never been through it before but it was worth it just for this:

The -- end?

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Speechless - You Wish

This little headline caught my attention:

Fines proposed for going without health insurance

Yes, by all means, require all Americans to feed the feed coffers of the insurance companies or suffer the consequences. Don't those idiots in Congress get it? SOME PEOPLE CANNOT AFFORD HEALTH INSURANCE. And any insurance they could buy would do them no good if they so much as stubbed a toe. (Bill: $500 they do not have against their $5000 deductible.)

While Congress is at it they might as well require everyone to buy a Ford and really help out the economy. Hey -- why not require everyone to shop at Walmart so the Wally World shareholders can keep raking in the dough while denying to insure most of their workers?

I may volunteer for the death panel. Please let my President lead.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Noblesse Oblige

From Wikipedia: "In ethical discussion, it is sometimes used to summarize a moral economy wherein privilege must be balanced by duty towards those who lack such privilege or who cannot perform such duty."

In hearing and reading about the Kennedy clan I came to believe they were indoctrinated with "noblesse oblige" from birth, taught that their wealth was not ordained by God and they had obligations to the people who made that wealth happen and to the people who had no champions at all.

When reading of the escapades of a few of them I knew that at times some fell short:

"... it has been used recently primarily to refer to public responsibilities of the rich, famous and powerful, notably to provide good examples of behaviour or to exceed minimal standards of decency."

A few of them failed at times, including Ted Kennedy. But I think he worked like hell to overcome his failings and live up to the noblesse oblige legacy.

RIP, Teddy.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


Don't even get me started on Walmart.

Save Big Money (and get pissed off)

Yesterday in a fit of git-er-done, I went to Menards. I hate that place. Like Walmart, I knew I hated it when I went it. But there were some things I wanted NOW since I had started a project.

Had I been patient, I could have had boards custom cut at the nearby small town lumber yard, picked up paint at the hardware store in the same small town, and gotten other incidentals there that went with my project.

But I was in a big toot (I have a small window of time to complete the project AND clear a path for Captain Crab when he returns from where ever in hell he is) so I drove to Big Town, through frigging road construction, clear to the other side of town where the behemoth Menards resides.

I headed towards the paint looking for cheap-cheap-it-doesn't-matter-paint and the first thing I took notice of was SHOELACES!! Because everyone looking for lumber, paint and hardware needs shoelaces!!

I passed many items that, had I thought about it, I could have used at home. But I eschewed them all because I went there for paint, boards and some hardware.

After I completed filling my list I ended up in line behind a guy I know. He told me I did NOT want to be behind him in line because he was paying with a credit card and for some reason, credit transactions were painfully slow.

We chatted some about the store in the big town that Menards put out of business. It had a contractors area (where my friend would have gone) where things were expedited. It also did not have bird seed, picture frames, dog beds, coffee, soup, shoelaces, bleach, books or DVDs.

In spite of having more than six items (the limit), I went to the express lane. I'd forgotten how the check out process is so very, very whacked. You put your stuff on the conveyor, run to the other end, swipe your card, put in your numbers, bag your stuff, pull your receipt, pack your crap in a cart and haul it out. Now that's service!! I don't know that I would have been able to pay with cash or write a check.

I cannot express how much I despise Menards and regretted giving them money.