Thursday, February 28, 2013

Mosey over for a true (and well written!) story of Texas

Blackfork's blog, always riveting.

It started with a fandango.

Day One - The Mexicans march in.

Day Two - Cannon, corn, shoes and a recon.

Day Three - Love and war in la Villita

Day Four - Water, wood and blood

Day Five - Cannonball stew

Day Six - Campfire tales

A moment remembered.

Sitting in a coffee shop, drinking something sweety coffee creamy dreamy, reading an enthralling book by Luca Turin, and Nina Simone is floating above it all, mournful and bittersweet. I'm wearing the best perfume I've ever worn, and this is a lovely moment.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Braces may be off in a 4.5 weeks. Yays!

Mochi the merciless

Mochi picks fights constantly. I'd say she is a batterer, except as soon as she riles up one of the others, she just flops onto her back and enjoys the abuse she gets for her efforts.

She is makes me laugh every day. Praline is as serious and earnest as Mochi is playful. Chuy is the grumpy little squire who just wants to be left to his pipe and his WSJ and his belly scritchins. Yup, I've got a complete set!

Dogs are the best.

Monday, February 25, 2013

I just bit this! With my teeth!

It went CRUNCH!

Allow me to catalog my achievements:

This weekend was my Mom's birthday, but she persuaded me to come to Dallas early next weekend (I have orthodontic/surgical appointments there Monday morning) and spend more time with her then when I'll be driving out anyway, rather than making a trip both weekends. Timing was a bit of a juggle, and I ended up switching the emergency phone from work to this past weekend instead of next(I was going to pass it off to a coworker on Sunday afternoon). It worked out. I was sad to miss Mom's actual birthday, but we're going to gather next Saturday night and celebrate her wonderfulness then, and it will be great. We've been texting and I said how I should have posted how wonderfully caring she was to me when I was recovering from surgery. She really was an angel, and Dad, too. She was very attentive and so sweetly mushed up my food in a food processor so I could gulp it down while I had no possibility of chewing. Come to think of it, I owe you all a post-surgery post. Will get to that soon.

So, the emergency phone kept me house-bound all weekend. In between phone calls, I cleaned out the front passenger side floor of my car, and a portion of the back seat. This was a larger undertaking than you might imagine. I cleaned out the catchall/whatsit drawer in the chest close to the door in the living room -- another deceptively tedious task. I washed/folded/sorted more clothes than I will wear in two weeks, and they are hanging, drying, etc. I filled two bags with clothes I don't or can't wear anymore that have been lingering about the place. Those bags are going to a coworker whose daughter lives in a women's shelter. I have to say sending her clothes that I know will be immediately worn and appreciated vastly outpaces the use I have for a receipt from a charity shop that I will likely misplace well before income tax time the following year. I have a HUGE bag of paper refuse for the free giant shred bin at work. THIS is a huge accomplishment, too.

Trying to pare down and give away what I can let go of without missing. Feels good. My house(and car, too) is a long shot from organized or tidy, but at this rate, I may get all my ducks in a row before I hit the half-century mark! ;) ...but don't hold me to it!

The yarn, however, I shall continue to hoarde. Don't judge me.

Oh, and the emergency phone from work? It was nutters. I had several hours of constant activity on Friday and Saturday, and several bouts of intense attention to a few customers on Sunday, which will net me significant uptick in my next paycheck. This doesn't break my heart.

Sunday was beautiful and I left the back door open for the pups to run in and out in the 68 degree afternoon. I'm grateful for all that is sweet and sustaining in my life, and I'm happy to let go of a few things that can help other people. All in all, if I have a roof over my head and I get to snuggle up with my little doggies every day, well, life is wonderful. :) Everything else is gravy.

Chemistry is still hard but fascinating. :)

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday, Puppy Sunday: two fur worlds collide!

Cleaning out a drawer, I found this photo from when Chuy and Praline met for the first time. This was at the vet's office a week before I was able to take Chuy home. Yes, Praline's hackles were up, but they warmed up quite quickly. :)

If I ever make it to Ohio, I am SO going to visit...


le sigh.

Looks like a great olfactory adventure.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Clever, indeed!

AD posted this on Facebook and I thought it was wonderful.

Single Ladies by The Cleverlys.

Watch their other stuff, too. Charming, clever and plain good listening. :)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I passed my HESI exam!

Requirement was an 80, and I made a 91. Busy, but feeling better every day!


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Electron shells make sense!

In other news, fruit flies like a banana!

Monday, February 18, 2013

A nose for chemistry.

Chemistry is slow-going. Thus far I have an A average on homework, but we won't have a test until next week, I think, and only then will I really know the lay of the land as far as how I'll do with no textbook to hand to back me up. I'll be pleased as Punch to get a C in the class.

For now, I'm searching for things that help me grasp chemistry and engage my imagination, and I've been reading quite a bit of information on perfumes. Here's an interesting interview with fragrance chemist Philip Kraft.

I would definitely like to read his book, but I think I'd rather spend the $85 on a new perfume. But the book is definitely on my list to obtain.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Sunday, Puppy Sunday: gangster doggie

Chuy in a hoodie. Nyarf!

I'm gonna bust some tags. Only got $20 in my pocket.

To the lady who sent me this video: you are evil!

And thank you, BlowFuzzy von Sassy. I like it. Already boughteded it on iTunes.

Friday, February 15, 2013

There was an earth-shattering Ka-Boom!

But for now, a cheeseburger and bacon cheddar fries. Om nom nom!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Did I tell you yet that I love and desire these shoes?

Yes, even in the midst of work and school stress, shoes can be wonderfully diverting. This bunny flavored shoe is available at Irregular Choice in Hong Kong, and the UK versions are supposed to be available in March. I feel relatively certain that I won't be able to afford a pair, but I certainly enjoy looking at them. I also love all the wonderful IC shoes I already have, so it's not as though I'm entirely deprived.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sunday, Puppy Sunday: nose and tail

Slept in bed instead of the recliner last night and the swelling in my face is not too bad. Yay! Woke up to the sight of Mochi's sweet face next to Chuy's curled tail. Sweetums!

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Advanced Style.

Have you ever had a great auntie or grandmother surprise you with a sudden bolt of what can only be described as sass? Well, I have, and it's a real joy to know the fires still burn bright. (My great Granny Smith would grin hugely when she said "I was a dancing fool." I figure she was about the right age to have been a Flapper. How scandalous!) I figure if you've gone through 7 or so decades of life, what is stopping you from tapping into a latent vein of zany, other than ridiculous social pressure that one must be tasteful or seemly?

When my hair is all silver (or gray), I'm going to dye it a pastel color at some point, just for giggles. I'll have this blog to document my actions so the nice young men in their clean white coats won't come to take me away. I can rightfully say I planned it all along.


I love the ladies featured in Advanced Style. Not sure what the age cutoff was for models in the book, but I think they are all over 70. Click on the samples from the book. These women are fearless and fierce. I found myself wondering which of these distinctive ladies I will be one day. It also gave me a jolt-- I've been far too boring in attire for quite some time, with the exception of a few genuinely ostentatious pairs of shoes. Vowing to amend that oversight.

I was thrilled, then, to read that designer Karen Walker is featuring older ladies as models for her eyewear.

Here's to the mature lady. Aren't they fun and adorable? Yes, and Sassy!

Giddy up, ladies. Yee haw!

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Chili is making.

Got home from school a little before 10 and started up a pot of wacky chili. It has ground venison, bacon and ground beef. Should be either brilliant or disaster, but I'll only admit to brilliant. Smells good already. I should be able to have a bowl of it before work this afternoon. Yum.

Monday, February 04, 2013

potentially wonderful orthodontic news!

Saw my orthodontist Monday, and he said there is very little left to do to adjust my bite. He said he may be taking my braces off in two months. Tonight I have the usual complement of ouchy from the power chain he put on my upper teeth this morning, but I figure I can handily endure 8 more weeks of this if that's the end of it. Also, when the braces come off, my monthly treatment bill drops by $123, and I sure could use that boost.

Monday I have my 9 week follow up with the surgeon. I'm still not 100%, but I'm getting better all the time. This week I'm on half days at work, and I expect the surgeon to give me the go-ahead to start 8 hour days on next Tuesday. A full paycheck will be a refreshing change, too!

On the school note, Chemistry is quite challenging, and I think I have a great aptitude for the abstractions therein, but I shall have to work ardently to memorize the elements formulae and anion/cation details, and dimensional analysis is tough, but doable. I've found a couple of study partners and we'll begin meeting on Thursday. I think this is a great development, because repetition is very important in this kind of work.

I've filed for my student loans for nursing school in the Fall. Income Tax was filed Jan 28. Feels like the duckies are lining up a bit. :) I apply for nursing school in a couple of weeks and I've got to take my HESI soon, but I'm not worried about that one.

Of course you know I'm fond of them, but every day I see my little dogs is a day of joy. I get so overcommitted and caught up in deadlines and my headless-chicken routine that I have vowed to take more time to be grateful for those shiny brown button eyes on the puppies. They don't worry about deadlines (other than meal time and the imperitive of the power nap), and they don't waste time fretting over mortality or piddle-spots on mommy's rugs-- every day is a new day to romp and play and snuggle. There's a lesson in there somewhere, and I'm trying to learn it and keep it fresh.

Viva les puppies!

Have a nice day of your own, tomorrow, and take a moment to cherish something that beautifies your day. :)

Can someone 'splain me this?

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the recent fiscal cliff bill) extended retroactively the mortgage insurance premium deduction to include mortgage expenses for 2012, which made my payments for the year fall short by nearly $300, which I can pony up now or have my mortgage increase by about $25/month.

So, I guess the name of the act is misleading. Apparently, we Taxpayers just get to dig deeper in already threadbare pockets to give relief to power-drunk officials who travel on our dime to exotic locales with entourages of hundreds of close personal friends, or fly on constituents' private jets to third world destinations that have an abundance of underage hookers.

I get it.

...having yet again survived the tires of Isengard-- er-- Stemmons Expressway

Orthodontic appointment in Dallas in an hour, then home to my puppies and to work for 4 hours this afternoon. The pups' sweet faces and exuberance is always revitalizing and happy-making for me. I'll be pleased to get home to them, but wish I wouldn't have 2 forays through DfW rush hour traffic. I don't miss it.

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Sunday, Puppy Sunday: Pups of others, napping Butcher edition

A dear friend came through tow with this lovely pup. Butcher is about the size of all 3 of mine combined, but he was sweet, playful and gentle with my furballs, in spite of any suspicion he may have harbored that they are big rats. :)

Saturday, February 02, 2013

61 degrees is more like it. Sweetness and light here.

Windows are open, as is the back door, and the puppehs are gamboling from lawn to loveseat, and all is well. Himself is helping me in the first spate of cleaning I've felt up to in months. :)

Love this gentle song and the joy of the video. Very sweet. Very light.

Sigur Ros Saturday

Back to my tidying.

Friday, February 01, 2013

A post for February 1

The incomparable Nina Simone performed this gripping rendition of Feelings at the Montreaux Jazz Festival. I remember I was a kid at the time Feelings came out and it was so very popular that it became a cliche. One episode of The Gong Show featured only a cavalcade of acts performing versions of this, because you just couldn't get away from it for a while, and it became something to shrug off. I think here, Ms. Simone was baring part of her soul-- I really think she was going through some profound heartache at that moment, and chose this setting for expressing same, underscored by her virtuoso piano playing. And I love the improvisation at the end, and then she modulates this minor key to Major and says "No." And you'll always stay right here in my heart no matter what.

Senza rancor.