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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Deep breath...

My cousin has been suffering with MS for 25 years...the family called in her priest for Last Rites this morning. She's been in agony for the last decade. Paralyzed almost totally, to the point of being fed by feeding tube for 5 years. Nothing by mouth, at all. I cannot imagine.
Death is very much a blessing sometimes.

My little guy is having surgery today. I'm confident in our vet team, but still scary as hell.
~~~


Feeling pretty calm and centered. Very frazzled yesterday, and then a big storm came through. I felt balanced afterward...odd, huh?



Thursday, June 19, 2008

Summer blues

I've been having a craptastical few days...little bits of this and that...all just piled up. There are some pretty amazingly great things happening, too..don't get me wrong!

I am totally and completely blessed with good friends. Kindness, support, laughter, sisterhood..all those cheesy Hallmark sentiments have been my emotional saving grace of late.
I very much appreciate you, Friends. Bitterly sarcastic and witty, sweet and sunshiny..all of you make a HUGE difference. *kisskisskisskisskiss*

Just a quick check in for this entry, and thanks for getting in touch to see where I've been :)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Dad's Day photos

Instead of taking the day off, Michael asked if we could take the dogs to the park.





For those that don't know our dogs, that's like asking "Can we give 3 toddlers some meth and take them to Toys R Us?" Well, sure! Sounds like a par-tay to me.


Very good time, aside from it being too damned hot and humid to really hike.
We took the dogs to the woods and into the creek.
Henry tried to eat this:



When the frog took off, Henry went a-hunting.



Even though he's an 82 pound Rotti/Pit/Houndy mix and scares the crap out of everyone..you know he's adorable. Bask in the Stridery Goodness.






Henry (r) and Voodoo, not so patiently waiting
"C'monnn, Naked Ape! S'go s'gooooo" (please god someone get that)



Big giant shock, Michael didn't ask for tacos *faint*
He wanted cantaloupe, havarti and ham panini..with broccoli slaw.



I can't believe it. The man has suggested tacos for almost every meal since we met.

The broccoli slaw is another hot weather staple. I found some organichappyhappy brand..pre-shredded..broccoli, carrots and red cabbage. I cannot leave well enough alone so I toss in a handful of pecans or walnuts, extra carrots and a handful of really freaking sharp cheddar. We love it.

I forgot to toss some basil in the panini this time. They were every bit as good, but I really like that clean, sweet basil flavor. Michael said, "What basil??" *sigh*

Happy Father's Day

Michael got to sleep in today..in honor of Father's Day. The dogs and cats, you know.

He's also getting Dinner of Choice (tacos), and Dessert of Choice (cherry pie).
Two things I detest.

I sat for an hour pitting sour cherries.
When I first gathered up my pretty earthenware bowl full of cherries I felt like Ye Olde Farm Wife...in a cool, funky, retro way.

Now I'm just pissed off and sticky..
I feel very much like taking him to Taco Bell.





That's my kitchen garden out the window...tomatoes, cucumbers, squashes, herbs..and some marigolds for natural insect repellent. Lots of flowers in there, too. I love cottage gardening.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Very @#$%^ BAD DOG. Kind of.

Instead of my easy dinner last night, I made pizzas. Grilled pizza is one of my favorite foods..which isn't saying one hell of a lot.

Michael's pizza was ultra meaty and cheesy and sauced to death. Not my thing at all.

My pizza had shrimp, shrooms, olives (black and feta stuffed green), artichoke hearts and a mix of cheeses (Havarti, fresh mozzarella..I had a round of Babybel so that got slapped on there, too).

I make my own sauce..I like it with a little bit of bite. Not traditional pizza, I'm sure. Oh, and I tossed some ground rosemary in my crust. I had a lukewarm reaction to it, so probably won't bother again.
The result was a stringy, olivey mess that had me closing my eyes in ecstasy with each bite.


I made little pizzas for us both. Maybe not *little* by definition, but little considering I usually feel I'm cooking for a family of 11. I don't do small batches of anything. It's a problem.

I left the pizzas on the kitchen table while we had supper.
No, we don't eat at the table. Our meals are eaten where the mood strikes. All part of my *meals should indulge all the senses* way of life.

The Very @#$%^ Bad Dog part.

I'm sitting on the couch, making out with my supper, and I hear an odd dry, slithery sound. In a house of 4 dogs and 3 cats...meh..weird noises abound.
I went back to my book (The Egg and I) and my food. I then hear the weird, snorty breathing of a Llewellin setter with something big clamped in his mouth.
Oh yeah.
You know where this is headed.

Voodoo had my remaining pizza (the dry slither was the crust sliding off the cooling rack)..today's fabulous lunch..and was bringing it to me to "trade for something good".

*gulp*

Now. Here's where it gets hard. Do I freak out and strangle the dog...or...stick with what I've trained and get him something good (bitch, that pizza IS good. What the hell am I supposed to trade up with!? Kobe beef?!).

Michael, the love of my life, made a fatal mistake.
He said, "Well, that will teach us to not leave food out."
Absolutely true, BabyDarlin', but SO NOT THE TIME.

I found something to trade up with. The slice in Michael's hand. teehee!

The moral of the story:
Dogs will be the scavengers they are. Even if you've spent countless hours training. Voo saw an Opportunity and ran with it.
Even more important:

Don't piss off She Who Just Threw Her Fabulous Leftovers In The Trash.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Just wow.

Very, very dumb girls
I do have sympathy for the lifelong consequences of their dumbfuckery...but wow.
Count your blessings, ladies


Giant, festering ass boils for this man...for all eternity.


I'm taking my grumpy ass to bed.

A little goaty kindness...

Will score you a gift card for "cleaning supplies" and a thank you card...AND a potential new friend!
A few weeks ago, we had 3 stray goats show up.
Yes.
I did so say stray goats.

Living in SmallTownButInTheCountry, we were able to track down the owners through the little country store owner (ie, Local FBI Operative).

The owners just stopped and dropped off a thank you card..how nice is that?!




You couldn't pay me to live anywhere else! :D

Roots..and what's for supper.

I spent years and years fighting any hint of WV accent, not admitting the farming/coal mining history in my family...you name it, I fought it.

I feared being a country song.

Years ago, I was chatting with an elderly woman who knew my family. After listening to me talk for a while, she raised her eyebrow and asked, "Where you FROM, girl?".
Holy gods. What a fierce question.

I'm a lot more comfortable in my own skin these days.
Yep, my grandparents owned a huge farm. Yep, my grandpa was a coal miner.
Yep, I barely pronounce L in the middle/end of words. My dear friend K giggled when I said, "Those damned owls are getting started". I'm sure it came out, "Those damned ows are gettin' started."

*Cue Dueling Banjos*

I can pluck a chicken, with speed and skill.
I know when to plant corn, by the size of new oak leaves.

10 years ago, I would have set myself on fire before admitting that.
---
Friday, in my house, usually includes massive housecleaning. As if we've had plague here. No idea why I feel such a drive to have the house immaculate for the weekend, but I do.
We usually errand run and grocery shop on Friday night..dinner is something simple but Weekend Worthy.
Michael asked for "that pasta with the hot sausage":
Penne pasta, with a tiny bit of homemade alfredo, grilled hot sausage and steamed broccoli..hurl it in a bowl and toss it. Instant Michael Happiness.

I'm not a fan, so I'll be eating my summer standby:
Fresh mozzarella, roasted grape tomatoes, chopped kalamata and black olives, and a big handful of fresh basil..tossed in a wee bit of "tuscan something" dressing. I like it on a hunk of fresh, crusty bread. It's really good with grilled chicken in it, too.
I can eat alarming amounts of this stuff..and I usually have a bowl of it in the fridge.

~~~~~
I e-mail pics of really good meals to my friends, with the recipe included. Maybe, ala Brenda, I'll start posting them.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Yeah, we have a good time...

My definition of "good time" has changed considerably.

Yesterday evening was a "good time". When Michael got home we worked in the yard together and talked, the dogs were out with us.."sun shining, birds singing, flowers in bloom" kind of evening.
I grilled dinner while he watched the dogs swim (our little patio area is by the pool), so we were able to talk and make some weekend work plans.
Just one of those delightful evenings together...cooking supper, doing yard work, bathing a maggot covered dog.

Maggots.

Henry found half a rabbit in the field and rolled his brown and white self in it.
No finer perfume for our canines.
Michael and I gagged and cracked up while bathing him. Our idyllic evening HAD to include maggots, or it wouldn't have been US.
--
Three shampoos later and Henry was back to his handsome self.
Until today:




I laughed long and hard as he dug his mud pit...totally worth the cleanup.
I got some video of him digging and snorkeling in mud...will upload it later.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Photos from today..








Between the message boards and blog sites, I think I'm going to overdose on pics.....


I forgot to post these earlier (well, here, anyway. They were posted on my other blog):











Someone has to be the skunk cabbage

I was browsing around this morning, looking for fun applications for this blog.
I added a "What Flower Are You" a few days ago -found on one of my garden forums. Out of curiosity, I changed my answers around to see what else I could be (HEY! Instant personality makeover!)...
All of the options are "pleasant" flowers.

No one wants to be the skunk cabbage or crab grass.

Everyone is a woods violet or a yellow rose.

Charlotte, one of my David Austin roses

Everyone is a monarch or a luna moth..nobody is admitting to being the bot fly.

So that got me thinking... Would I be willing to slap a "I'm a skunk cabbage" link on my page?
Sure!
Everything has its place and function in nature..and for the most part, things are fairly happy in their place, doing their thing. Evolutionary changes don't count, because, that's part of the plan!
Nature doesn't try to be more popular or have X amount on their friends list, more blog hits..or suffer that feeling of "what the hell!?" when their blogs go un-commented.
I'm sure there's an argument out there for nature's "Bigger, Better, Faster" plan ..but you get where I've gone with this train of thought:
Nature isn't about the blog hits, darlin', it's about surviving!

There's one helluva lot to be send for the unsavory characters in nature..foul smelling, invasive, parasitical...they have seized the day and moved forward...embracing their flesh-eating, stinky selves.
----
No sooner than I went looking for some hideous bot fly pic, did I find a quiz that didn't sugar coat my not so charming personality!
Find your Inner Insect


WHEE! I'm a grasshopper!
You are a grasshopper. There's no surplus of social niceties here - the moment you land, you start eating. You are insatiable in every respect; people get tired just looking at you. You know exactly what you want, and you go after it singlemindedly, which is admirable - but the odd "please" and "thank you" wouldn't go astray.

Wait...I dont wanna be a grasshopper..... I'm a delicate butterfly, damn it!

I hope everyone takes note..this delicate butterfly is dining on a squashed toad

I have no *message* for anyone...ooh wait. How about
"Embrace Your Inner Botfly?"


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sleep ...and Jesus Beams






Run, Sinners, run! It's the Jesus Beams!

*As a young teen, I pissed off several family members and their neighbors by referring to the sun beams in the last pic as "Jesus Beams''.

I meant as in the sunbeams you see in inspirational religious posters. Not as in..alien Jesus beams.
Didn't help that I cracked up for days (years?) over it! Ah well.

We had a big storm roll in...a lot of huge black clouds..very dramatic...and heavy rain. NO hail, thunder or lightning. YAY! The garden is safe.

Anyone wanna come let the dog crew out in the morning? I need some serious sleep..sleep like I got as a teenager. 10 hours of delicious, deep sleep!


Nooo!


We're under severe storm watch again...and I swear...if the "damaging hail" hits..and ruins the garden *foams at mouth*.
I JUST got every single thing planted and mulched. Give me at least ONE damned vegetable before damaging the garden!
This is WV. We are not known for this insane weather. What the hell happened?!
Tornado watches, microbursts, a week of 95 degree temps in June? APOCALYPSE!

My sunburn feels a ton better! I did deplete Earth of its aloe supply. Whoops. Sorry!
Pardon me while I plug some favorite stuff:
This is Heaven In A Bottle, folks! I have yet to find better sunburn relief (aside from vodka)


I keep one of these in my purse, one in the console in the car, and one by the back door in the pool stuff. My nosie burns fast, damn it.


If you don't mind smelling like this(and hell, who would?!) this stuff is wonderful!


After the Great Sunburn Even of 2005, when I couldn't wear a shirt for 2 days or a bra for 5...I'm an Ocean Potion Madame, whoring their products across the land. They have a spray block I'm pretty fond of, but still heart my Banana Boat Sport spray sunblock.

Monday, June 9, 2008

I'm on FAHR!

Translation from WV-ese..."I'm on FIRE".

Ow ow ow ow sunburn ow ow ow ow.
If I was a cartoon, I would have those little sizzle lines coming off my shoulders and chest. If anyone caught Reno 911 the other night..I'm Lt Dangle!
SPF 50 is only SPF 50 if you remember to reapply.
*sigh*

I finally got ALL the veggies in/mulched/etc. I have peas to plant for a fall crop, and some lettuces to start. The lettuce is a constant crop, though, so no rush on that.
Now. In theory: We are in the maintenance stage of gardening. We'll just see about that.
I ended up with about 11 more plants than I intended. Hope my family wants some of this stuff.

I reseeded the front yard and in front of the parking space. I need to do it every year, because of The Heathen Four.
I'll reseed the back yard sometime this week. Also, need to decide on what to do with my grilling area. I have 16x16 in path stones under and in front of the grill, but I would like some grass around that spot. Hmmmm. Maybe transplant one of the hydrangeas to that area, on the corner of the house.

I need to go shower, but I am dreading it!

I'm making a new chicken recipe tomorrow..will post that recipe and reviews.
Night, All!

Forgot the Pics of the Day!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

YIPE!

I DO live under an Evil Cloud...



Can you see the scary evil face?!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Really...freakin'...tired.

Completely ripped off from my other blog, but I'm too tired to be creative:
---
Busy friggin' day.
We took Henry to his holistic appointment...left him for xrays...ran home and took my moms dog for shots...took him home...ran to get Henry...took Henry home...ran to the store...stopped in drug store for aunt J...

I decided to make a few chilled dishes to eat over the next few days. Heat index of 97 tomorrow, and today was only 67. BIG freaking switch.
Made pasta salad and baked some cookies for Michael's lunches, made a shrimp salad-y thing, and some more broc salad (we are living on the stuff).

It has rained for 3 days, so the humidity is 95% or so...lovely.

Michael and I worked outside for 2 hours:
Moved another slew of gladiolus...about 75 plants.
Moved Scentimental rose
Moved the bush delphinium
Moved the Russian sage
Planted a bunch of sunflower seedlings, marigold seedlings, zinnia and calendula seedlings....
Transplanted my poor tomatoes from the Pots Of Death into the ground
Planted a few Goblin gaillardias
Hauled more plants down from Grams' house and planted them (11 daylilies, 2 Japanese peonies and 15 scabiosas)

We are a new and exciting kind of filthy. I had mud smeared on my eyelid.
Michael had some mud in his teeth.


I adore this man..he could probably come home with a dead hooker in the trunk and I wouldn't get mad...
That's my guy snuggling our dog Henry...nothing more studly than that, right? :)

Sooo...chicken news...
I picked the coop plans. Now, to find the perfect spot and get buildin'. My uncle will be giving us 3 hens. That will leave 3 for me to track down.

On that note, I'm going to bed.
One more pic ...from my front porch looking west! Kinda the same view as the pic of Michael and Henry.