Friday, December 30, 2005

Mug Shot O' the Day

Needlefingers gave me the idea.
I laugh every time I see this. Don't you wish you were so easily amused?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

A walk through my day

First, I wake up all snuggly and warm in my new jammies.

I sleep later than usual, but when it's time to get up, I have my new tempurpedic slippers to keep my feet nice and toasty. They feel awesome. So awesome, in fact, that I picked up a pizza and took my daughter to a game shop while wearing them. That's proof that I've become an old lady who cares more about comfort than style. Shut up.

Next, it's on to the bathroom. I brush my teeth with my fancy-schmancy new toothbrush. The plaque doesn't stand a chance with this baby.

Now, what to wear, what to wear...maybe I'll wear this jeans and top combo that my mom gave me. I think I'll keep the slippers on though.

Wait! I don't have to wear the slippers all day to have nice warm feet. I'll just put on a pair of my soft, snuggly lounging around socks! My family knows that mommy is no fun when she's cold.

Now it's time for a little cooking. It's not my favorite thing in the world to do, but having a cookbook like this makes it a little more fun. My sister-in-law got "Any Bitch Can Drink". My goal is to collect the entire "bitch" series. You gotta aim high, people. Thanks Kellie!

Doing dishes is a lot more fun when I have a pretty new shiny thing to look at. Thanks again Kellie!

I'm still trying to decide what I want to do with this gift. Being a musicgeek, you know I love my tunes. This was the only Ipod-type thing that D could find that was left in any of the stores around here. I'm thinking I may throw a little more money with it and get a nano. What do you all think?

The other wonderful thing that Santa (aka -D) got for me was the niftiest little camera ever. He knows I love to take lots of pictures, so he made it really easy for me. I already had a great little Cannon Powershot, but it was pretty heavy and hard to carry around easily. Not this little jewel! It's tiny, light, and has a docking station that recharges the battery. It's perfect for me to carry everywhere.

I must have been a very good little girl this year. Even with all of the wonderful gifts I received this year, the best gift was spending time with the people I love.

I am so very blessed.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

A new teapot

It must be the English ancestry. I just love a good cup of tea. So following Jennifer's lead of getting "one present for you, and one for me", I bought myself a new elecric teapot. It works great, and is so much more fun to use than the microwave.

I'd like to take a picture of it for you, but I'm afraid to. Look what happened to this poor Ebay seller.

Friday, December 23, 2005

One more day!

All we need to do is put little baby Jesus in his manger tomorrow. He's waiting patiently in his little pocket. We've had this advent calendar since the girls were itty bitty. They still like to put all the pieces up every year. There's usually a knock-down drag out over who gets to put the baby Jesus in place.

Ah, the stuff sweet memories are made of.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Last day of school before Christmas break, what the...?!?

That means mommy will be running around like an insane person today. I totally forgot about stocking stuffers, until I walked by the stockings this morning and saw them mocking me with their emptiness. That's right, folks, I'm really not like an insane person, I think I've reached the tipping point with the holidays and become crazy.

The kids went off today with gifts for their teachers. They'd better appreciate them is all I can say. They will all be getting scarves knit by the little darlins'. Ciara only has one teacher, so her workload was a little lighter than Savannah. She had to make four of them! We wrapped the last one this morning.

The bus drivers got white chocolate and sprinkle covered pretzels. They should get a medal.

So today I'm off to stuff stockings, and pick up an ever growing list of gifties that I seem to have utterly and completely zoned out on.

But, there's always time for pie.

Above is a pic of my breakfast. Don't you just love pie for breakfast.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Who is it?

Tonight's the big night! We finally learn the identity of the Carver!! I'm so hoping that the Nip/Tuck finale doesn't disappoint me. I really don't have very many things on TV that I just have to watch. I've been into this show since the first season, and feel like I'm really invested in it...pardon me while I go get a life.

Birthday presents, apple pie, Japanese food, and bowling

Yes, these are what a make a brand new 12 year old happy.

Savannah's birthday was yesterday, but we did most of our celebrating over the weekend, and celebrate we did! Granny made the trek over to join in the fun. We went bowling Saturday night, had presents at lunch on Sunday, then topped it off with a trip to the local Japanese restaurant that evening. Savannah loves that place, and has been looking forward to going there for her birthday for MONTHS. The birthday girl's choice for dessert was apple pie. Granny and I made one that afternoon, so that was dessert.

Oh, in case you're wondering, the new senior citizens free bowling day regular (aka "Granny") beat the crap out of us on the lanes.

Here we are at the Japanese Garden. Daddy was there behind the camera. The birthday girl got a fancy cut pineapple with an umbrella in it. You've gotta love anything with a little umbrella in it.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Snug as a bug in a rug...

or make that a cat in a shawl. I knitted this over the Thanksgiving holiday. It's made of good old acrylic-y Homespun...yeah, shut up. I know all of the yarn snobs are breaking out in hives right now. It really feels pretty good, and most importantly, it's Zippy-friendly. I'll do lots of things for my kitty, but hand washing his blankie isn't one of them.

The girls had a Christmas recital over the weekend. Savannah played "Gertrude and Elizabeth" by Beethoven.

Ciara played "Turkish March", also by Beethoven.

It was a more relaxed, casual recital this time. The teacher divided the kids into two groups, and had two "mini-recitals", one at 10:30 and one at 12:00. It took place in the Youth fellowship hall at church instead of the big sanctuary. I know the pics aren't very good, but you get the general idea. Having the kids split up into the two groups was a great idea. We were finished with our session in about an hour. In piano recital time (which is almost like dog years), that's awesome!

They both did a great job, I'm so proud of them.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Come on in!

This is the front door of the gingerbread house the girls made. I think they did a great job on it. I always wanted to make a gingerbread house when I was a kid, but never did. Now that I'm a mom, the big perk is that I get to live vicariously through MY kids! I bought a kit for cheap at Aldi, which is the giver of all good, cheap things. It had house bits, candy, and two bags of icing. One thing I learned is that two bags of icing just ain't enough. Thank goodness I had some ancient powdered sugar rattling around the back of the cabinet. The roof alone is so coated with "snow" that it's a miracle the wieght of it hasn't caused it to just fold in on itself. They had fun decorating it, and mommy is still vaccuuming up sprinkles.

It's the gift that just keeps on giving.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Yup, that pretty much hits the nail on the head.

Stole (er, I mean borrowed) this from Ragged's site. Took the little quizzie, and here I am:

You Have a Choleric Temperament
You are a person of great enthusiasm - easily excited by many things.Unsatisfied by the ordinary, you are reaching for an epic, extraordinary life.You want the best. The best life. The best love. The best reputation.
You posses a sharp and keen intellect. Your mind is your primary weapon.Strong willed, nothing can keep you down. Your energy can break down any wall.You're an instantly passionate person - and this passion gives you an intoxicating power over others.
At your worst, you are a narcissist. Full of yourself and even proud of your faults.Stubborn and opinionated, you know what you think is right. End of discussion.A bit of a misanthrope, you often see others as weak, ignorant, and inferior.

The Manolo, he is a genius.

Ah, the Manolo, he never steers me into the direction that is wrong. The Father Ted is a show for the television that is most funny. It makes me do the laughing like I am a silly person.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

New format, same old me.

Here's a little story for the day.

Back when I was a little kid of about 7 or 8, my family "added on" to our very small house. The people I know now would call it "putting on an addition" or "doing a remodel". We just called it adding on. The men who did the work for us were friends as well, and went to the same little country church that we did. For a kid who grew up as far out in the country as I did, it was very exciting to have these guys coming to OUR house ever day, hammering and sawing.

One man in particular was my favorite. His name was Gene. Looking back, I realize that he was a few years younger than I am now when they worked for us. Gene would always take a few minutes out to tell me a new (and always corny) joke, or just to tease me a little. One of my very favorite things he would do was sit down at our piano and play and sing the song "Old Dan Tucker" for me. I would always crack up at the thought of someone washing "their face in a frying pan". Every chance I would get, I would beg him to play and sing it for me again. Many times, he would oblige me, which looking back probably didn't thrill my mom and dad too much, since he was supposed to be building our house, not serenading me.

This memory popped into my head when I heard the news that Gene's funeral was this past Wednesday. It seems he was suffering from some Alzheimer-type disorder and wandered outside, where he died of exposure. It made me very sad to hear that. I can only hope that God protected him in ways we can't understand, and allowed him a peaceful end.

The main reason I'm sharing this story, sad as it is, is for the simple reason that I hope when I leave this earth, someone will be prodded to remember some little kindness that I did for them. What a wonderful way to live on.

Although my friend Gene grew older and got sick, in my heart he's still young and singing to a little girl, just because she asked him to.

It's getting harder to keep up with the Jones'

My nephew Levi, just won another honor! He's just been named the Non-Winged Sprint Driver of the Year. We're so proud of him!

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Did you miss me?

It's been pretty busy the last few days. The Thanksgiving cookies are long gone, and Christmas is in 'da house. Had a wonderful time with both sides of the family over the holiday. I even had a little lesson in what a "yarn over" is from my dear, young cousin. Much food was eaten, we talked, we laughed, we napped...well, you get the idea.

D and I got to have a little get away time in St. Louis over the weekend. Granny was holding down the fort. Lucky her, she even got to attend a 6th grade band skating party. Even though it was a work related weekend, D didn't have too many committments, so we got to get in some shopping and general R&R. I whittled away at the Xmas list, had a few glasses of wine, and ate insane amounts of pasta and Chinese food.

The photo above is our view of the Mississippi river from the 15th floor of the Adam's Mark in lovely downtown St. Louis

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A chance to put yourself on the map.

Come be a joiner!! Zippy already has one friend in Corby, England! Just stick your own little pin in the map. I promise we'll call before we come visit. Find Zip the wonder cat's map here: Zip (and Musicgeek's) map

Cheers! Now I've got to go put up a Christmas tree.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Gobble gobble, baby!

The baking has commenced. The tally so far:

-1 batch white chocolate-macadamia cookies
-2 pumpkin pies
-1 rhubarb pie
-1 batch Brickle drop cookies (on deck, ready to be baked)

Still have more to make...hope it all gets done.

I also want to get the worst dirty bits of the house put in order before we head out for all the thanks that just keep givin'. I know, I'll be there when I get back. I've heard it all before. I just hate coming home to a mess. There. I said it. I've become my mother.

I'll make sure everyone has decent underwear on too.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

My new toy

Go here for your very own Brawny man.

He's kind of like turtle cheesecake. He's real sweet, but you can only stand so much of him.

Friday, November 18, 2005

My brain feels like it's scrambled.

Today was Get Smart with Art day in Ciara's class. "What is that?", you ask. (I have no idea if the punctuation on that is correct.) It's the day that rolls around every month when parent volunteers go into the classroom and do a short lecture on a preselected art print, then do a little tie-in project with the kiddies. Sounds simple, doesn't it. Here's the recipe:

Paint, scissors, glue...2 adjacent classrooms so crowded you can hardly move between them...and 57 fourth graders. Add dirty brushes and murky rinse water sloshing about in a basin and a drying rack groaning under the weight of sodden cardstock. Season with the superheated sauna-like air in the classrooms. Add a pinch of fourth grade B.O....

Voila!! There you have it! Get Smart with Art!!

Will somebody please tell George Bush that I really don't care about going to Mars. Just get me an art teacher in my kid's class.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Singin' in the, cold...errr, sun...

Yesterday was some wacky weather around here. I had to do some running around, and every time I got out of the car, it was a new climatic adventure. I said climatic adventure people, get your minds out of the gutter.

This is how the trip started.

After a stop at Target (really, who can't stop at Target) the sun popped out of the clouds in all it's retina-searing glory

The sun brought with it about a 10 or 15 degree temperature change too. So, OFF went the scarf and jacket that had felt so good just an hour before. I was happily checking out a new place in Belleville called Bronx Zoo, and enjoying the pretty spring weather. The owner of the shop just mentioned that she had opened the front door and turned off the heat. In about 5 minutes, a gale force wind starts blowing. Freaky clouds are zipping by, and Kimmy decides to get the hell out of Dodge. On the 15 minute or so drive home, the temp falls by 15 degrees. I've got the little outdoor thermometer thingy built into the rear-view mirror, and believe you me, I was checking it out. We were lucky, all we really got was wind and rain out of the deal. I think Indiana and Tennessee got hammered pretty good.

Now it's just cold.


Sunday, November 13, 2005

Aawww, look at him...isn't he sweet!

I'm soooo happy for my nephew, Levi. He won his first USAC national sprint car title last night. I really shouldn't say last night, because it took and entire season to get it done. I'm way more of a Levi fan than a race fan, but even I know this is HUGE. He's such a good's nice to see when good guys finish first.

The photo above is Levi (in blue and red) and Damion Gardner celebrating their victories. Gardner is the regional-CRA champ, while Levi has the Valvoline national sprint car title.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Finishing stuff is a good thing.

Some new stuff.

This is a wire and bead crochet set I made to go with a particular shirt. It all looked really good too. Well, it did until I washed the shirt, anyway. Now it's an item that would fit a preteen. Good thing I have one of those around the house too.

This is my first ever KNITTED scarf. The close up photo shows more of the true color of it. It weighs about a hundred pounds. I really don't know how that happened. Mae, the knitting guru, says it's because of the mohair in it.

This creation is a new bag made from an extra pillow sham. It's a quilted suede cloth in a very hard to photograph color somewhere between burgundy and purple.

This is the new thing. Last night my first scarf was finished early in the night. I went poking around through the yarn in the shop and this is what I came up with. I just love it. It's on it's way to becoming a keyhole scarf. It's probably going to be finished sometime today. I don't seem to be able to just do a little here or there. I always want to go and go until the thing is finished. Then I'm sitting there wishing I had another thing to knit. I'm blaming it all on Jennifer.

If they cooperate, I'll get some pictures of the girls with their projects later. Savannah is almost ready to felt her bag (heaven help me!) and Ciara's scarf keeps growing.


Friday, November 04, 2005

Where did the damn Yankee come from?

I suppose living for 7 years at the tippy top of Illinois left it's mark on me some way.

Your Linguistic Profile:

80% General American English

10% Dixie

5% Midwestern

5% Yankee

0% Upper Midwestern

The girls and I went to our local yarn shop last night. Savannah just wanted to go and do some more work on her felted bag. Ciara and I took a beginner knitting class. We all had lots of fun. Ciara did a great job, and really started to get the hang of it. I can see right now that this will be an expensive hobby. This morning, I was working on my knitting project while I was watching the news. Zip, the ancient one, was all curled up beside me. Ciara remarked that she needed to get the camera because I looked like "those knitting people who always have a cat by them". Ooh, that's sexy...


Thursday, November 03, 2005

The zoo and some art

Last Friday, the kids had no school, and Granny was over for a visit. What to do, what to do...go to the zoo, ba-by!! It was a perfect day for it. I've paid my dues at enough scorching hot field trips to the zoo to really appreciate having to wear a jacket. We packed a lunch in the wheely cooler and headed out. Granny had never been to the St. Louis zoo before, so with Savannah as the official navigator, she saw EVERY section. Let's just say Ciara's enthusiasm for the day was "fluid". One minute she was ready to leave ("I'm tired of this zoo."), and the next she was happily snapping photos of leopards ("Oh, mom, let me get a picture of him looking THAT way!").

The first picture of the day, when everyone is "fresh".

Checking out the penguins and puffins. They're stinky, but cute.

In front of a rather bored bald eagle.

Lunchtime! The kids were certain they would perish from hunger before we stopped to eat.

After the zoo, we headed on up "Art Hill" and took in the new exhibit at the Art Museum. Ciara was really not thrilled about this. It was an interesting exhibit, and I'll probably go back sans children to get a better look. We had a typical kid visit, rushing through the show then spending FOREVER in the gift shop.

Outside at the Art Museum. Note purchases in hands of kids from said gift shop.

I was kind of jazzed about the Chihuly chandelier that I'd never noticed there before. This humble little pic doesn't do it justice. The colors and sparkle of the glass are just beautiful.

Outside view of the museum. You need to go there. Now.

So, there's how we spent the kids day off from school. Animals, lunch, and a smidge of art thrown in for good measure.



Tuesday, October 25, 2005

A Test

A little quiz I saw on I can live with being mercerized cotton. It's way better than dishcloth cotton...

You are Mercerized Cotton
You are Mercerized Cotton.You are always very crisp and neat. You are very
playful and are happiest while outdoors in the
sunshine. You are sometimes accused of
splitting hairs, but in the end people find you
pretty easy to live with.

What kind of yarn are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Did a little shopping today, since now I have a bare-assed naked closet. Thought I'd pick up a snuggly brown cardigan of some sort. Don't know how that will be accomplished without looking like a frickin' Wookie. Everything made me look like Mrs. Doubtfire. I'm just not ready for that...


Monday, October 24, 2005

It's a dirty job, but...

no one's doing it for me. Today's the day to clean out the closets. I plan to be ruthless and get rid of all the crap that I've not worn for years. Oh, said crap gets it's little bit of attention every year, what with being moved around seasonally, but enough is enough! I'm tired of lugging it up and down the stairs. I may have an inch between hangers in my closet when I'm finished, but so be it. Really, I'm almost shamed into it. D (the neat one) did his side of the closet yesterday. My side looks like an explosion went off in it.

On a more fun note, ta-da, here is the second scarf I've made. I did it all in ONE day! It's a bulky yarn done on a bigger hook. My craft ADD prevents me from starting something that may take weeks to finish, so this was perfect. This is what I was doing when I should have been cleaning my closet out.
This is a perturbed cat face. It belongs to my Methuselated cat, Zip. He REALLY didn't want to be a scarf model today. He's ancient, but he's still my baby.
I'll be in my closet.

Friday, October 21, 2005

A New Thing

I'm learning to crochet. I know, I know, you're saying to yourself,"Kim, how many more crafty things can one person possibly need to know how to do?" Well, apparently, one more. The main reason I want to learn is to start crocheting wire and bead jewelry. Right now, I'm using cheapo super saver yarn and am making something that seems to want to be a scarf. I'm not questioning it, I'm just embracing it. It's really coming along very well. Oh, of course, there were 2 or 3 complete deconstructions, but all in all, I think I'm progressing nicely. It will be finished, and it WILL be worn. It will also be very acrylic-y, as my cousin Jennifer puts it. I'm already looking forward to splurging on some nice yarn for next time.

It took me so long to get back to finishing this post that I've actually crocheted my first wire and bead necklace and earring set. It's way fun...and the bead possibilities are endless! The pics may not be the most professional, but you get the general idea. I never claimed to be a model or a photographer. Don't worry, my ear is a lot better looking in person.



Monday, October 17, 2005

Rollin' Down the River

Saturday, our little family went on what was probably our last little cruise down the Kaskaskia river for the season. It was a beautimous day. The sun was shining. The temp was in the upper 70's. As long as there was no chance you would actually make any kind of contact with the water, you were just fine.

We put the boat in at New Athens, IL, then cruise about 20 miles down the river, and have a nice little lunchie at the marina in Evansville, IL. Sweatshirts were a required item. Cruising around at 30mph got a little nipply.

Here are some pictures of the crew.

The Skipper and Gilligan

Sometimes the Skippper (Darnall) lets Gilligan (Ciara) drive. She does a great job. She likes to run the boat the same way she does everything else, as fast as she can!

Ginger (the movie stah, dahling)

This is Savannah. Her main purpose on the boat is to be strictly ornamental. If pressed into service, she's a quite capable deckhand.

I guess that just leaves me to be Mary Ann or Lovey. The kids choose depending on what mood I'm in that particular day. The only photo you have of me today is that foot looking very relaxed at the top of the post.

That's my little family on our little boat. We still don't have an official name for it. Some suggestions have been:

-"Midge" Ciara insists on it...don't know why.

-"Life is Good" Savannah likes this one. She's already planning ahead to the next boat which will be named, "Life is Better"!

-"Malee Marie" This is my choice, as it's the kids middle names. I think it's very pretty.

- I can't print some of Darnall's choices...



Friday, October 14, 2005

You can never have too many little books.

I have a wierd thing for books, pens and pencils. I get excited when I find just the right pen, or a really great notebook. One of my favorites is the Moleskine. I know, I's WAY overpriced, but the size and "feel" of it made me have to have one. It has been my "special" book, mostly used for sketches on trips. It's always kind of bugged me that I felt that something had to be Moleskine-worthy before I'd use up any of the pricey pages. Anyhoo...I came across some instructions on the web for making your own little fake Moleskine. It's a Yahoo group called Hedgehogs Forever, because the person who put the instructions together dubbed her little knock-off a hedgehog. Mine is the book in the upper left hand corner. So far, it's been a fine little book. The best thing is knowing that it was so cheap to make that I can write whatever drivel in it that my little heart desires.

After that little foray into making books, I've been making books out of anything that even looks remotely like it'll work. The ones on the upper right are little notebooks using the oversized paint chips at Lowe's and some drawing paper I had lying around. As usual, I was in Lowe's for a completely different item, and got distracted by the pretty (some were even shiny) paint chips. I grabbed a bunch, and at the time had no idea what would become of them. Voila!!!! They just became a handful of pretty little notebooks. The book at the bottom was my first attempt at a coptic binding. It's made of torn magazine pages, cuz they were there and didn't cost anything. It turned into my favorite little book to write in. You never know what you'll be writing around. One day, it's a bare leg, and the next, it's a bowl of soup.