Tuesday, January 31, 2012
I made a 100 on my first Pscyhology paper.

Sorry if this is a one-note symphony, but I do dearly hope that I have cause to make everyone sick of hearing that I made a 100 in one or other of my classes.

The first paper in Psych was meant to be an imagining of a conversation between one of any 4 pairings of famous early Psychologists. I felt it was probably the trite choice, but I went for Sigmund Freud and JB Watson, and was meant to be a lighthearted treatment of the subject. I started to do a convo between the two of them talking about Lindsay Lohan and her hosed-up family, but I felt that was too arcane a Gordian knot to tackle in one page of text. I decided to have them interact on a more personal level. It started off:

Dr. Freud: You have an interesting way of staring at my cigar.
Dr. Watson: You have an interesting way of holding your cigar.

...and it was downhill from there. The professor said "Nice job" and that was good enough for me, coupled with the 100.

I'm nervous about the quiz tomorrow in Anatomy. I've been studying, but we are in the chemistry end of the business and the complexity of all these teensy little things is staggering. But I can learn this. If other people can do it, then so can I.


Wow. This year is 1/12th over.

Amazing, innit?

Puppehs had their annual trip to the vet today and they are healthy and up to snuff. Praline is 14.5# and Chuy is 16.8 or somesuch, which is down a few pounds. I think the bluejays have been staying out of the yard so he's been short on diet supplements. Then again, it's almost baby bunny season again, heaven preserve us. This year the pups are going in March for a fresh round of rattlesnake vaccinations. It's hard to believe I've been out here almost 3 years. Praline will be 4 in May and Chuy will be 4 in August. Anyway, out here and as dry as the summers have been, I do worry about seeing more rattlesnakes in town around where people live, so I need to keep them vaccinated, little darlings.


Oh! Guess what-- at least one starlet wore sensible shoes to the Golden Globes. See Vibrams in pic below:

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Monday, January 30, 2012
a song that always makes me happy
I was delighted to find this stripped down version of the Supertramp classic Breakfast in America featuring only its composer Roger Hodgson on vocals and keyboard and a soprano sax. He's producing good vocals more than 3 decades down the line from the first time I heard this, and it's nice to hear a voice still sounding in its prime because it's been properly used. Still love this song for its its bouncy optimism and the wistful, lovely melodic line.

I first heard this around the time my family moved from Arkansas to Texas, and though I love the Ozarks and always will, this was the gateway to a happier time in my life, and this feels like moving forward in a very good way. :)

Come on you little fighter
no need to get uptighter
Come on you little fighter,
and get back up again.
It's Raining Again by Supertramp

Here's hoping we all have a bouncy, optimism-worthy week.

Cheers, darlings!
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Sunday, January 29, 2012
Sunday, Puppy Sunday: Pup o' the morning!

Or, pups, rather. My dreamlings wanted to get up, so I popped some laundry in the washer while they fed and did the outdoors thingie, and now we are back to bed for more power-napping.

Life is sweet!

For your viewing pleasure, two pup-centric photos from the perspective of my pillow this morning:
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Saturday, January 28, 2012

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Friday, January 27, 2012
I made a de-motivator!
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find your happy place
This week has been a total grind, but this is the last week I'll have with such a brutal schedule, since the show starts tonight and there won't be more rehearsals on weeknights. Next week I expect to settle back into a routine of yoga classes and rigorous study every evening, and maybe I'll even try to make a dent in the Close Encounters pile of laundry. Or not.

Anyway, I'll be less stressed out, and that is certain. Oh, and maybe I'll get more than 5 hours of sleep tonight. I'm just proud of myself for making it through this week without cracking into a beer or a bottle of wine, because I really couldn't afford to wake up the next day with things any more throwed off than they were going to be anyway.

In the meantime, a lovely diversion: John Fluevog is having a shoe sale! I probably won't buy any, but these certainly do tickle my fancy. Purdy!

Have a great weekend. I'll post about opening night tomorrow, but don't look for the post to be early. I plan on having a much-deserved lie-in tomorrow. I may sleep till the afternoon. Or not. I'll probably pop awake at 6am out of habit. Hopefully not, though. Hopefully visions of sugar-plum candy-colored Fluevogs will be dancing through my head.

Oh wait, they always are. :P
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Thursday, January 26, 2012
Did I really used to stay up til 3 or 4 every night?
Yeah, but back then, I didn't get up until the crack of noon so I could be to work on time by 2PM. This getting home after 11 every night sucks big green donkey whongers. Thank goodness tomorrow's the last night of rehearsal.

What's kind of a shame is that a bunch of people mutinied and went home at 10PM (or was it 10:30?) tonight.

Tomorrow I have A&P at 8AM, then work until 4, then A&P lab at 5:30, then straight to rehearsal which will no doubt run until 11 again. Fingers crossed that we've gotten the worst of the kinks worked out of the show.

The sad thing is that Friday with 8 hours of work and a performance is going to seem like a light day after all this week. Saturday night after performance, Mama is gonna drink somethin', y'all.
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Wednesday, January 25, 2012
You can't dust for vomit.
For some reason, I've been thinking of this scene from the classic mockumentary This is Spinal Tap.

*devil horns*
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Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Tired but happy.
This is final week of rehearsal, thank goodness. Took this photo when I took off my costume tonight but before I de-spackled my face. The show is really coming together and I always hear people laughing when I

say my lines. Whether they are laughing with me or at me matters not. I'm having fun. :)

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I spent too much time in the art and music buildings before.
The science building is by far the coolest on campus.

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Monday, January 23, 2012
Blogging should return to normal soon...
or sort of normal. I've just been busier than a one-armed paper hanger.

Worked a full day Friday then tooled into Dallas and hit Ikea and then on to Nordstrom Rack where I did some serious damage. Took 3 large bags of stuff over to Mom and Pop's and tried stuff on from my 30 minutes in Nordstrom ($$$ spent, needed to be sure). Spent the night, went to brekky with Mom and Dad and heard some great stories about uppity old ladies in the town in Arkansas where Dad grew up, and they'll have to be shared here soon.

Bought a little pair of diamond earrings for my niece, and she seemed thrilled. I told her she is MY diamond. It's amazing how much love you can have in your heart for a youngster, isn't it? And it's wonderful, too. I treasure every second I get to spend with her. And my nephew, too. :)

Good stuff.

Went to Norstrom at the Galleria and couldn't find my shoes for stage. Bought the first decent coat (on a very good sale) that I've had in years, and this one will last me for years, so long as I don't let wild puppies walller it. Had my hair cut, had an incredible Thai chicken salad at Panera, and got shoes! Shoes! But no shoes for the stage, alas. TOok my returns to Nordstrom Rack where I spent more hours, and headed home from Dallas about 4 hours later than I'd originally intended.


I feel invigorated. Can't wait to wear my bitchy new shoesies. YAY!

A FEW WORDS ON TOLL ROADS IN THE DALLAS/FORT WORTH AREA: Every illegal alien who has run into me on roads in Dallas has never had car insurance. Qu'elle suprise! I have observed an absolute dearth of rattle-trap broke-down P.O.S. - type vehicles on the toll-roads in the Metroplex where one must fork over hot, fresh dosh to drive thereupon. I deem that this toll is a small price to pay for traffic that flows smoothly, and is populated nearly entirely by people who care about not banging up their chariots. Count me in. I plotted my course in and out of the shopping areas on those Toll Roads. (I remember when Hwy 121 was just another regular road, btw, but I'll take this-- good quality roadway, new, no cars on fire on the median.) Well worth it at twice the price.

WHAT HAVE WE LEARNED? If you must drive in the DFW area, it's well worth your while to seek out the toll roads. Spend five minutes on hoi polloi expressway (Stemmons) and you'll wish you were on the George Bush turnpike. Srsly.
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Sunday, January 22, 2012
heartwarming story. :)

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Sunday, Puppy Sunday: A friend in need
Himself is still under the weather with pneumonia, and Miss Praline was very sweet and attentive. Chuy was on his lap, and I think you may be able to see his nose somewhere in the photo. Anyway, Himself's right ear got a proper swabbing. Isn't that sweet?
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Thursday, January 19, 2012
It's amazing how knackered you can get...
... When you go to a class in the morning, work a full day, go to a lab and then go to a rehearsal.

I can't believe I made it through the whole day without caffeine, but here I am, in bed before ten. Feels good.

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I will be sad when the USPS goes out of business, but...
I have to say that when it comes to shipment tracking, UPS beats the pants off the US Postal Service.

Case in point-- before the holidays - I was expecting the arrival of a holster I ordered for Himself(more on this later). It was shipped Priority Mail on Tuesday from a city not 150 miles from here. And yet, when on Thursday it had not arrived in late afternoon, the clerk in my local friendly post office told me the tracking number was not a good number.(?!) The movements of my package did not appear at USPS.com until AFTER the delivery. It didn't come on Friday, December 23. Thank goodness the local nice folks at the post office cased mail on Christmas Eve and put the package in one of their lobby lockboxes, because that meant I still got it in time for Christmas present for myself and Himself.

Contrast that with experience this week. I decided to celebrate going back to school with a new perfume, which I ordered from Nordstrom on Sunday. The package went into shipment on Monday afternoon and I expect it to be delivered sometime tomorrow. It came from Illinois or somesuch place, and it's moved like a little rocket on its way to me, and I didn't even request express or fast delivery-- this is just the standard shipping.

I know the USPS has the technology to do the same thing, but I wonder what the kink in their system is? *le sigh*
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Wednesday, January 18, 2012
All at once the clouds are parted. Light streams down in bright unbroken beams.*
*in which the milkman of human kindness left me an extra pint
Thursday when I went to orientation, I scrambled to consolidate my poo, and I had my student ID card made, got me parking sticker and my school books. All was ready. Except that I misplaced the parking sticker. I'd been looking for it since Thursday and was worried I'd have to park in some visitor lot in BFE and go buy another sticker.

Monday night I got my book bag together, replete with a fresh bottle of water and cough drops and kleenex. My outfit was chosen and waiting for me, and all that I needed to do was get some sleep (somehow) and get up in time to make it there and get decent parking.

Got out of bed Tuesday morning with no problems, ate my yoghurt and honey, quick shower, a bit of preening then off I went a full hour before class time. Got to the school in about 15 minutes and went to the police station to buy another parking ticket. Their office was still closed and when I climbed back in my car, lo and behold there was my parking sticker under the accelerator pedal. Yee haw! Went over to my building and I got the most primo spot in the parking lot. It was glorious. Went into class geekily early and had my choice of seats. It seemed like all was falling into place.

So class is going to be tough, but I think with hard work, I'll make it through just fine. What other people can do, I can do.

Class let out about 15 minutes early so I moseyed over to the local community college to see if they would let me in their online General Psych class. The couselor who saw me said she'd just checked and that class was completely full. She opened up the screen and said "someone must have just dropped, because 2 places just became available" and so I was in that class, which is a pre-requisite for an online class I need to take this summer. SCORE! Went to the bookstore and stood in line for a bit and realized it was going to take me longer to get my books than it did to register, and one of the other students said to me that if I wasn't paying for books with financial aid, I could go to the express checkout. So I got registered for the online class AND paid for it and got my books all in less than an hour. I call that pretty cool. :)

Went to the rehearsal for the musical Tuesday night and was really worried how the director would react to me arriving 15 or 20 minutes late on this Thursday and the next one, but she was quite civil and thanked me for letting her know. Actually, most of the big stars of the musical have missed an entire rehearsal or two, so I don't feel terrible. It was a relief, though, to come clean about it. I have my A&P lab on Thursday nights.

This is going to be tough, and it's going to take a lot of hard work, but I think I'm going to be fine. Getting my butt in gear was harder than I can convey, but at this point, I'm pretty pleased. And the end of May will be here before we all know it, right?
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Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Okay, Teacher. Bring it.

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Is this video true?
Is there actually a variety of giant redwood in England?

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Monday, January 16, 2012
The Christmas decorations are down!
And it's not even Valentine's Day yet. Have you seen those giant storage bags from Ziploc? I LOVE those things. All the garlands and decorations pretty much fit into 3 of those. I have some Christmas stuff ready to go to Goodwill, but at least it's all sorted and out of sight. I can imagine the owners of the immaculate property kitty-corner to me must have been losing their minds over my failure to remove the decorations. Furthermore, it wouldn't have happened without the capable and gallant Himself, who generously lent a hand on staple pulling and what not, particularly on the high bits on Sunday morning.

I was sort of in a cleaning frenzy Sunday in efforts to get things really ready for when I go to school on Tuesday morning. I don't know why, but it's extraordinarily difficult for me to keep horizontal surfaces free of clutter. Yeah, I know I should put things away immediately after using/bringing them in from the store/etc, but it seems nigh impossible. Nearly half the stuff on the dining table is related to painting the trim (or is the corner and divider blocks for the molding) and it seems impossible to not have renovation-related stuff littering up table tops, etc.

My front door is one of those steel-clad kind (with, I'm sure, a foam-core of some sort), and it's white and I'm befuddled as to how, but it was extremely grungey. I'm a devoted fan of Lysol Dual Action wipes with the textured side for de-glopping things. Still, I don't get how this door got so dirty. It's not as though I have a cavalcade of booger-coated chilluns running in and out but there were unidentifiable muck and oomska on the door. Needless to saym, the Lysol Dual Action Wipes were put to some serious hard use there. My cheapie front door is still a pig's ear, but at least it's a clean piggy, now. I was surprised to see how the (apparent) action of the Christmas wreath moving against the door worked a little gouge into the powder-coated paint. Odd.

Ah, well, it's all a work in progress, innit? The living room is clean again, and that alone seems like a miracle. Most of the laundry is done, too. Hopefully with a little effort tomorrow night, I'll have the dining room completely cleaned up, too. I need the table for homework.

I know it probably seems odd that since my tendency is clutter that I should feel a desperate need to have it all clean before class begins. Maybe it's just a psychological line of demarcation for me? I dunno. I just know I feel like I'll go nuts if this is not all sorted out by this time tomorrow night.

I'll get there.


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Sunday, January 15, 2012
Sunday, Puppy Sunday: a subtle hint that it's bedtime

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Saturday, January 14, 2012
Overheard in wal-mart
Me: I think it's so smegged-up that Justin Bieber has a line of cosmetics and perfume.

Himself: I just think we need to be ready when he sheds his earthly body and begins to feed.

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Happy 15th birthday to a most beloved niece
You may already be several inches taller than me, but no matter how tall you ever become, you'll always be my little lamb. I love you very much!

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Friday, January 13, 2012
Orienting myself.
Orientation was a bit of a goat-rope on Thursday. It seemed a little over-long, but finally they corraled us all to our respective departments. Because I don't have all the prerequisites for applying for nursing school, I knew I'd have to get some out of the way, so I went in as an undeclared major and that meant I ended up not in the right place. The man in the wrong department told me to go over to the head of the nursing program and talk to her before I committed to some other class schedule.

I went into her office and waited-- she wasn't there. She breezed into the office, a flurry of energy. She was wearing high black boots, a short sweater dress, and she has a lot of flair, with short, spiky bleached hair. She looked amazing, actually. Hot. She said she'd have to review my records, that there were certain standards for the nursing program and my previous academic record would be significant. She directed me to sit near her and she pulled up my transcripts in her system. "Boy, you WERE a music major, weren't you?" she said as she flipped through the dozens of music credits in my file. Several times she said my grades were great and finally that she didn't think there would be a problem with me being accepted to the nursing program. :) She seemed happy to help me and gave me a paper to have someone sign to override the class limit for an Anatomy and Physiology I class that was already full, and I was IN. Class starts Tuesday. Books were $335. Srsly.

I have to take A&P II, Microbiology and a whole raft of other stuff sciencey before I'm admitted to the nursing program, but I'm really, really excited. I feel on much surer footing than I did 24 hours ago. I feel encouraged.

Thanks for all the well-wishes in comments. You really are a lovely bunch of folks. I feel like I'm at the edge of an ocean I have to swim. It's kind of scary, but it's exciting. Into the drink! I'll holler if I need a life-raft, mkay?
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Thursday, January 12, 2012
Hey, RUTH!
Somewhere along the way, I've lost darling friend Ruth's phone number. Ruth, if you'll post me a comment with your phone number and email address here, I'll be able to call you sometime when I'm in Dallas, and I'll email you my jam recipe. :)
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school days...
I think I first enrolled at UNT (was then NTSU) in 1987 then abruptly stopped, and then Tarrant County Jr College (now Tarrant County College) in 1989for a couple of semesters, and then went back to UNT in 1996 with summers getting core classes out of the way at another area community college. Then last spring I got a math credit out of the way at yet another community college. I have 95 hours accumulated. I remember feeling vaguely oldish at the time I went back to school in 1996. I wonder what it will feel like at orientation later today, when probably most of the people my age are faculty or parents bringing their young'uns to college?


Anyway. Today is orientation and whatnot. Here goes nothing.
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Wednesday, January 11, 2012
my ring tone
The whistling is my ring tone. Not the anemic singing, although I'm okay with that, too. Fun!

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Fresh chickpeas!
I have no idea what to do with them. Anyone have experience cooking these? I had to try them, having only seen them dried or canned before.

Spent Monday night prepping for 2 more batches of cranapeno jam, the first of which I'll make tomorrow after work. I may make both batches tomorrow. Once you've got the whole shebang going, it's relatively easy to turn around and make another. But you sure do get tired of the process before it's over-- it's pretty exhausting, and you're working around dangerously hot glass and molten sugary liquids, so you have to stay on your toes not to get burned. Anyway, it seems like the most time-consuming part of this is prepping the cranberries and the jalapenos. You've got to hand-pick through the cranberries and toss out the bad ones, and for the neutered version, you have to get the seeds and veins out, which always makes me cough, a nice accompaniment to the stinging eyes. Anyway, it will all be worth it, and hopefully these two batches will go like clockwork. :)

Anyway - let me know if you have any tips on the fresh garbanzo beans!
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Monday, January 09, 2012
music I'm digging right now
Love this song. Can't find it on iTunes or Amazon, though. *fume*

Lofticries by Purity Ring
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Jam Session 2012 1.0
Sunday night I made two more lots of cranberry/jalapeno jam in what may be the last batch I make of the stuff until next Fall. This is my favorite jam, period. One thing that's been challenging is to make it hot enough for the people who like a lot of heat in their jalapeno products. I do two batches- one which tries to be hot, and the other is a neutered version. This time I did something different. I made both batches on the same night and started with the neutered batch. I cleaned all the seeds and membranes from the peppers for the first lot, and then I put those membranes and seeds in with the massive pile of peppers on the second batch. I think I've at last achieved a fair bit of burn with the jam. Chopped up in the food processor, I had about 2 cups of jalapeno, or more.

The batch on the lower shelf is the neutered, and ended up only being 9 half-pint jars, and the upper level batch is the hot stuff. Honestly, I like this year-round on biscuits or turkey sandwiches or whatever. The bright spike of pepper is a nice foil for the bitterness of the cranberries, and that seems to balance out the sweetness, so it's not so cloying a jam as the usual fruit stuff. Then there's that perennial party favorite, cranapeno jam dumped over cream cheese and served with crackers. nom nom nom!

Turns out, both cranberries and jalapenos are excellent anti-oxidants, so you can feel slightly less self-indulgent for slathering it on whatever.

Some of this batch is for friends, some is for Tolewyn who helped me with a car battery emergency at the end of December, and the rest will be my personal stash. Amazingly, they still have about 10 bags of decent-looking cranberries at the market in town. I may snag those and make one more batch. It'd be a shame to run out of the stuff, wouldn't it?


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Sunday, January 08, 2012
Sunday, Puppy Sunday: Where's Praline?
I thought this post went up about 12 hours ago from my iPhone, but apparently it failed.

Can you find the pretty doggie in this picture?

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Saturday, January 07, 2012
Molding. Yays!
First 4 lengths of molding are up.

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Friday, January 06, 2012
*happy dance*
Just found out I was accepted into local State university. Yays!!!

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But I'm not an athlete!!!
I have to admit I've been in a serious funk for a couple of weeks. Himself sagely surmised that the puppies wanted me to have a sensational pair of shoes for Christmas, and so the puppies got me the shoes. Alas, I have not been able to wear them because one of my toes has gone full-on athletic. Actually, it is on the mend, but I'm at a loss as to where I may have picked up athlete's foot. The only place I've been near the bare feet of strangers has been at the Yoga studio. *ew* You take off your shoes in the foyer there and leave them on racks. I think I'll be wearing socks in and out, from now on.

Anyway, it's miserable stuff. From commercials I've half-way paid attention to, I thought athlete's foot itches. This hasn't itched-- it's hurt like a screaming mofo. Like wake-me-up-at-4AM hurting. Apparently some people have this on and off for years. I don't know how anyone stands that. I hope this is a one-time thing for me, too. *le sigh*

I want to wear my new shoes.

Maybe it'll all be better when I wake up in the morning?
There's no place like home. *click* *click* *click*
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Thursday, January 05, 2012
Icelandic folk song about a raven
I love the percussive energy of these vocals and the way the tones glance off each other in a way which suggests the opposite of bubblegum.

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Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Un-decking the halls
Not great pictures, I know, but I wanted something to remember my Christmas decor by. I thought my little house looked so cute be-swagged in red lights and greenery. On the porch columns I did this little fishnet effect with some cheapie green garland and wee plastic red ornaments and florist wire, and I wasn't terribly precise with it, but I still think it turned out very cute. Of all my houses, this is the first time I really did exterior ornament of any kind for Christmas, and I really liked it.

Unfortunately, though, I don't want to alarm the neighbors. Inside, I have left a Christmas tree up past Valentine's day before, but I don't think I could get away with this on the exterior for very long. It's coming down tomorrow.

*le sigh*

It was fun, though. I plan to do it again!
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Tuesday, January 03, 2012
potty humour from Cagney and Lacey on the Graham Norton Show
Yeah, I know it's tacky, but it's really funny. Killer moment for me was when Sharon Gless said "I don't remember eating that." I noticed she referred to Tyne as "Mary Beth", so I suppose this was an in-character moment.

Meaning no offense to anyone, but I hope this gives you a grin. These ladies are really funny. :)
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Monday, January 02, 2012
True story: man uses handgun to free 3 children from submerged car
Odd situation, but nice to see a news story featuring an example of a firearm being used in the rescue of 3 young children. :)

I'm not trying to judge the driver of the vehicle, but I would not have left the car without securing my children and/or my puppies first. If that meant my own death, then so be it. Very odd, indeed. I could not have lived with myself otherwise had any of them died.
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Sunday, January 01, 2012
Oddly enough...
...there is a watch for high winds throughout most of the midwest for today and early this week, with a high wind warning particularly for Iowa. In light of Tuesday's primary, I think this comes as no surprise for Iowans.
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Sunday, Puppy Sunday: first pup-snap of the year
The pups have been fed and outdoored, and Chuy seemed contemplative before deciding to get back under covers. Miss Praline, of course, had already taken her narrow self back undercovers, because it was cold outside. Happy new year!!!

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Name: Phlegmfatale
Location: Elsewhere, Texas, USA

I'm not whining;
I'm unburdening.

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