Friday, February 29, 2008

Free shipping and two-day delivery. It's been a good week.

I ordered my new purse, and it came two days later. That's pretty spectacular. And it's so beautiful. (sniff).

I am digging this bag. Love the lining! And the different compartments fit all my purse stuff, plus my latest read - a paperback at the moment, but I think I can get a hardback in there. Room to spare!
Well, off for a fun-filled weekend. It's just TH and me tonight, but tomorrow I meet up with my girls and it's shop-till-you-drop. Pictures and stories on Sunday.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Thursday is the new Monday

Bake Night returns, after a hiatus due to reasons yucky (illness) and fun (piano lessons).

Tonight, me and my girl Betty made some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies to freeze for future Deacons needs.

I bought these mixes at the store for cheap, so's I could whip up cookies when called upon (Deacons help out with receptions at the church, for funerals, services, etc.). However, there's something off about the ingredients (certainly not with my oven!!). These took forever to bake, and weren't acting right on the cookie sheet. From scratch is the way to go, I think.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Random thoughts

You know it's almost Spring when...the cat sheds. And sheds. And sheds. I think there's enough fur now for another small cat.

My piano lesson went well last night. If I can just practice, I know I'll pick it up quickly. I like this learning stuff...maybe I'll do some languages next.

Did anyone watch "A Raisin in the Sun" last night? Since I had my lesson, I had TH record it. I'm hearing mixed reviews, especially related to Mr. Combs. Really though, who can top Mr. Poitier in that role? No one, that's who. I'll try to watch later this week.

TH has lost 19.8 lbs so far!! Woot! That's almost 10% off his original weight. They say that this amount significantly reduces your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and generally makes you a better person. OK, so two out of three ain't bad.

We cleaned up our garage enough to fit both vehicles in it. If you know my family, this is a major life accomplishment.

If a cow laughs, does milk come out its nose? (TH's contribution to the randomness of the day)

Meow, prrrrrrrp (The cat's contribution)

In a week, I'll be 35 years old. Me and my girlfriends are going to go shopping, get a pedi, and have a sleepover on Saturday. And eat lasagna and garlic bread and cake (probably not all at the same time). And talk about men. And laugh. Sounds like a good plan to me!

And so I leave you with this quote: "Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it." - Jane Wagner & Lily Tomlin

Saturday, February 23, 2008

It will be mine...oh yes, it will be mine.

The Sak handbags: Sak Signature Leather Slouchy Satchel. If I can't afford Longchamp, I guess this'll have to do.

I Love a Stormy Night

As more winter storms tickle my windows, here I sit, laptop handy, cat on lap, more books awaiting, and Bach on the stereo. Ahhhhhhh. A note to all the idiots I've seen walking around in shorts, tube tops, and flip-flops: I told you people it was still winter. But did you listen?!

I am feeling much improved, thanks to several days off, oceans of water, a very high bottom-to-couch occurrence, the wonders of legal drugs, and a bag of Oreos. (I maintain that there's no proof they didn't help. Further study may be warranted.) Thanks to those who sent good wishes for improved health. Unfortunately, TH has contracted this bug from me. Boo.

Not much is new as I've been out of the loop, but I do start piano lessons on Monday. Yay! Since I already read music (years of violin lessons and vocal pursuits), it will be interesting to see how quickly I pick up the technique. I'm hoping that, being comfortably adult, I can have some fun and not feel the need for perfection. We'll see. And, since Monday will be lesson nights, bake nights are hereby moved to Thursdays. I haven't watched CSI since Sara left, then with the writer's strike and all...well, why start now? Plus, I can take the goodies to work for staff meetings on Fridays. So it's all good.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Books, glorious books

Probably the only really great thing about staying home sick is, I have nothing better to do than read. And boy, have I been reading!! (See "What I'm Reading," sidebar) I've been reading faster than blogging, so some books haven't made it to the list, like "The Sunday Philosophy Club" by Alexander McCall, and "Multiculturalism and the Mouse," by Douglas Brode. What fun! I just got my latest booksfree package in the mail, too: Ken Follett's "A Place Called Freedom" and Hildegard of Bingen: Selections from her Writings. I love-love-love the anticipation of books waiting for me! (On the books note - I am doing well with the Lenten sacrifice of making no new books/music purchases. My personal book stash is dwindling, slowly, but the panic has not yet set in.)

One of the best books I've read lately is Betty Smith's "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn." "Tree," where have you been all my life? For your pleasure and mine, here is a wonderful passage from this treasure:

Each week Francie made the same request and each week the librarian asked the same question. A name on a card meant nothing to her and since she never looked up into a child's face, she never did get to know the little girl who took a book out every day and two on saturday. A smile would have meant a lot to Francie and a friendly comment would have made her so happy. She loved the library and was anxious to worship the lady in charge. But the librarian had other things on her mind. She hated children anyhow.

Francie trembled in anticipation as the woman reached under the desk. She saw the title as the book came up: If I Were King by McCarthy. Wonderful! Last week it had been Beverly of Graustark and the same two weeks before that. She had had the McCarthy book only twice. The librarian recommended these two books over and over again. Maybe they were the only ones she herself had read; maybe they were on a recommended list; maybe she had discovered that they were sure fire as far as eleven-year-old girls were concerned.

Francie held the books close and hurried home, resisting the temptation to sit on the first stoop she came to, to start reading.

Home at last and now it was the time she had been looking forward to all week: fire-escape-sitting time. She put a small rug on the fire-escape and got the pillow from her bed and propped it against the bars. Luckily there was ice in the icebox. She chipped off a small piece and put it in a glass of water. The pink-and-white peppermint wafers bought that morning were arranged in a little bowl, cracked, but of a pretty blue color. She arranged glass, bowl, and book on the window sill and climbed out on the fire-escape. Once out there, she was living in a tree. No one upstairs, downstairs, or across the way could see her. But she could look out through the leaves and see everything.

It was a sunny afternoon. A lazy warm wind carried a warm sea smell. The leaves of the tree made fugitive patterns on the white pillowcase. Nobody was in the yard and that was nice...Francie breathed the warm air, watched the dancing leaf shadows, ate the candy and took sips of the cooled water in-between reading the book...As she read, at peace with the world and happy as only a little girl could be with a fine book and little bowl of candy, and all alone in the house, the leaf shadows shifted and the afternoon passed.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Can't Touch This

TO: Blog spammers, virus-spreaders, and generally rude people trying to infect my blog and my readers.
FROM: a page from her book

I have received your comments from the last week. However, I must ask that you cease and desist posting comments that do not pertain to my posts and that lead readers to inappropriate and possibly infectious sites. As well, I have begun the process of comment moderation. Therefore, your comments will not even make it onto my site. So take your energies elsewhere.

It's really too bad that you can't think of anything better to do with your time. What would happen if you used your talents to help others instead of spread ill will in the blog community? I pity you, and I pray for you. Perhaps one day you will learn that true power comes from doing good deeds and serving others.

Until then, thank you for your time.

a page from her book

Friday, February 15, 2008

Things I think about when I am sick.

1. Why do some colds make you want to eat the entire contents of a mega-super-grocery store?

2. Why is it called "catching" a cold? This makes it sound light and airy, like "catching a butterfly" or "catching a ball."

3. How can resting all day make you tired-er?

4. Does the cat sleep like this when I'm not home?

5. Why do I feel guilty for being away from work?

6. What do stay-at-home parents do with their kids when they (the parents) are sick?

7. What is that creaky noise?

8. How many people outside of India like Bollywood movies?

9. How can my skin still be so dry and itchy if I'm drinking so much water?

10. How is it possible to feel both hot (my feet) and cold (my hands) at the same time?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My Funny Valentine

Tales of Valentine's Past.
  • Sweetest Valentine's Day Moment. (Watch out, you'll get a cavity from this one.) When TH and I were dating, we each bought the other a teddy bear (aahhhhh). TH put his cologne on mine, so I could cuddle it and be reminded of him (AAAHHHH!).
  • Lowest Valentine's Day Moment. My freshman year in the dorms, those of us who were single (ahem, bitterly single) decided to make big construction paper hearts with the names of our dorm-mates and their boyfriends/girlfriends on them. Then we tore the hearts down the middle and put them on their doors. I know. Pathetic, and kinda mean too.
  • My own personal "Charlie-Brown and the little-red-haired-girl" Valentine's Day Moment. When I was in 4th grade, I had a major crush on a boy in 6th grade. Major. I made him a Valentine, but was too shy to give it to him. One of my friends did the deed for me while I watched from afar. Alas, he shrugged and stuffed it in his pocket, then went back to playing kickball. Sigh. Such drama.
  • Grown-up Valentine's Day Moment: Kid's valentines and chocolates for co-workers, funny but slightly naughty card for hubby. Keeping it simple!

Enjoy your Valentine's Day Moments!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Seasons of Love

525,600 minutes, 525,000 moments so dear.
525,600 minutes - how do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
In 525,600 minutes - how do you measure a year in the life?

How about love? How about love? How about love?
Measure in love. Seasons of love. -- Jonathan Larson

Sunday, February 10, 2008

All I Ask of You

Valentine's Day is coming, and I wanted to reflect a little about valentines past. But before I do that, Feb. 11 will be here tomorrow. Feb. 11 is a special day for TH and me - it's the day he proposed to me.

We had already decided to get married, and I had told him I didn't need a proposal spectacle or an engagement ring. It was enough for me that we had found each other. He, on the other hand, decided he wanted to do it up grand. I told him that in that case, he needed to surprise me. No problem, he said. So the days come and go. January turned to February, and Valentine's Day approached. I figured he would aim for Valentine's Day, or wait till early March, when my birthday is.
We had made plans with my parents to attend a showing of "Phantom" in San Francisco on Feb. 11. We take BART into the City, go to dinner, and head to the theater. At the theater, we get our programs and Cliff and my dad head to the seats while my mom and I make one last trip to the restroom. After we get back to our seats, Cliff hands me my program and I start reading through it. I'm sifting through the slips of paper announcing which cast members are playing various parts that evening, when something catches my eye. Wait a minute - that's my name! What...How...Ohmygod, ohmygod! It says, "Will you marry me?"
I turn to Cliff, who is valiantly trying to get down on one knee, in the narrow aisles of the Curran Theater, while opening a simple ring box. The next moments are a blur - adrenaline rush; Cliff's baby-blue eyes, shining with love; my parents grinning; my mom's voice, from far away, "well? what's your answer?"; the orchestra tootling; the people in the rows around us murmuring. And then, the cool slip of a ring on my finger, glinting in the low light.
So romantic! And that was eleven years ago, tomorrow.
I would say yes again.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Lenten Sacrifices

Many people use Lent as a time to sacrifice - give something up - or change - do something different, change a habit. After a couple of days of thinking about what I wanted to do in this season of Lent, I decided that I could use a sacrifice. It fits in the spirit of living more frugally and more simply. Since we bought our house, and I went through the purging of belongings pre- and post-moving, and realized I have way too much of everything, I've also decided to be more thoughtful about what I bring home. Also, the house is such a huge financial commitment that I've started examining how I spend my money.

So, I'm sacrificing this year. I'm not buying any new books or music. I have plenty of books, and I belong to booksfree (, so I'm really not hurting for books. But I still love buying them! It's such an addiction. And so easy to go to, look up something, and order it. Voila. I'm calling an end to it. At least for 40 days.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Ashes to Ashes

Today is Ash Wednesday, marking the first day of Lent. Lent lasts for forty days and is a period of reflection and repentence. It ends with Easter. The ashes of Ash Wednesday are to remind us of our mortality - from dust we came, to dust we will return. Some people of faith choose to attend services where the ashes are mixed with oil and placed on the forehead in the shape of a cross. The cross is a reminder that by God's grace, we are given new life in Jesus. By his death on the cross we are forgiven our sins.

Whatever your faith, may your day be a blessing to you.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Today in California:

No excuses, no whining, people - just go for it!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Super Bowl, Schmooper Bowl

As I am evidently the only person in the United States who couldn't care less about football, I took myself out for lunch and a movie. It's official: James McAvoy is now on my hottie list. I saw "Atonement" - great film. I read the book a few months ago, so I was interested to see how the story played out onscreen. Loved it BETTER than the book - and I don't say that often.

Go see it before it's out of theaters!