Monday, November 30, 2015


Welcome back! I hope hat we all enjoyed our feasts and our families/friends! I hope you all spent Friday shopping big and your Saturday shopping small. I burned all the calories from the meal spending  a lot of money between my big and small shopping.

I also bought my brothers birthday cake while shopping small.

And then I came home and got to work! Thanks to Alphagal, I have been making puff balls since Friday evening. I have at present 108 puff balls in three sizes - small, medium and a few large - to large for my garland, but impressively sized and good candidates to become tree ornaments . All puff balls would make good ornaments and I am surprised someone isn't selling them. They would be ideal,  the right shape, variable sizes, easily storable, unbreakable and easy to make and they could be cheap to produce.

I have learned the difference between cheap and better yarns. Cheap yarn knots and tangles left, right and center-  but you get a lot of it, while better yarn resists tangles and knots but there is less of it. Its a toss up. I have gone through so much yarn, all the yarn. I'm going to develope a yarn allergy before I'm done. I have a blister! and I am going to keep going! I can not be stopped!

Between the two types I have three sizes of puffs! many, many, many puffs. At present I have 108 and counting. I have no idea how many more I need  to make and in addition, I also have the small, sad puff balls I bought at the store as well. They are small and sad and I don't like them anymore but they will get used, at least the larger ones. The little ones aren't going to see the Christmas lights.

I also did the laundry and made two more batches of dog cookies. I still need at least two more but that is doable. Next up is putting together the garland, doing the Christmas cards, getting together the dog cookies, doing the indoor and outdoor decos and putting the tree up.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

The best turkey ever. Its not hard, it works, I tried it out last year and it was a smashing success. Follow the instructions: do as he does - and you will have a fantastic bird.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


If you were wondering "When does winter start in Raleigh, NC?",  this year winter started on November 23, 2015! We woke up and it was winter. Just like that. Saturday, the day of the Christmas Parade, it was genuinely lovely. If I had attended, I would have been warm and happy and stayed for the whole event, that due to the lovely sunshine, would have photographed beautifully. In other years I have left early because I could no longer feel my lower extremities.

I can't really complain because it got to be winter in November, I mean, who knew? November is not supposed to be balmy and warm. Its supposed to be cold, not miserably cold ( see Jan-March), but cold enough you know it's winter and the plants die back. My plants have not died back and no one has known it was winter. It was.

If things stay this way, I'm going to have to do something about my plants that are still in the ground and end the season for them. The elephant ears need attention and I'll need to decide if they are going to stay where they are but with  multiple levels of mulch or of they are going to spend the winter in the basement. The one I did that with survived, but took a really long time to gets its grove back in the spring. Possibly should have started to think about this before now.

This is why I don't get anything done. And yes, I am wearing a coat, it's comfortable! and I forgot I was wearing it. It's the dogs fault I get nothing done. He's too warm, too cuddly and too squishy. I would get more done if he was less everything.

Monday, November 23, 2015


Shopping is fun, shopping for myself is really fun. I went to North Hills Mall to see what kind of stores they have - answer? Very cute and Very expensive. A lot of gift boutiques and high end clothing stores and real restaurants. It was way outside my budget comfort zone, but it was fun to wander around. While I was there looking for gifts for other people, I was forced to buy myself two pair of  leggings. Two for one! They were on sale! I was helpless in the face of it! They are really nice! so much nicer than the ones I buy at Walmart.

I did find a gift for someone who wasn't me, so I did buy someone else something! I feel good about that. And then I got a hold of myself and went to do my real shopping at Wally.  Well, not exactly, I do not plan on buying actual Christmas gifts for my family at Wally, because, ew . I'm doing my actual shopping online like a real person.

I went to Lowes and Home Depot in search of a gift but got dissed at both stores! I saw exactly what I wanted a few weeks ago, but at the time I didn't know that I wanted it, and so I didn't get one and now I do need one or two, they are all gone. Of course they are! Because that's just the way things are. And No, they aren't going to order more.

And then I went to Wally and did some dog cookie shopping. Loaded up on supplies, I came home and made  turkey gravy cookies for the dogs in my life and venison meat loaf for the me in my life.

I also fought and won against the overwhelming urge to put my tree up early.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday Cat Blogging


Rocket and I finally got a walk,  it gets dark so early that even leaving at 4: 30, its still too late and I come home in the near dark. Its not a happy time for walking the dog.

Target was my friend and had Rockets med ready for me and did it with a smile. I picked up some food for kitty and some dinner for me. I came home and tidied the house for my parents visit. Its not perfect but its so much better than it was when they dropped by the other day.  There are hardly any dead leaves anywhere inside any more.

And today is Friday and I am relieved. It's been another long week and a sad week as well. Its all very sad.

Thursday, November 19, 2015


I decided I need to go put gas in the car because I heard a rumor that the weather was about the change and I don't live for having to stand out in the weather to fill the car in the rain. So I did it tonight.

I decided that since I was already out and about that as long as I was out in the dark, that I was out of toothpaste and I might need more coffee and those things are both sold directly across the street from my favorite gas station. Being efficant is good.

So I go to the store with the idea that I am there for coffee and toothpaste. Simple. While I am traveling from toothpaste to coffee, I start to think about Thanksgiving and what I was going to bring, because I need to bring something that is not desert related - I am going to also make some sort of desert idea as well, but I haven't gotten that far yet. Now I am thinking about side dishes.

I found a very nice green bean casserole online and I am very excited about it, I felt that as long as I was in the store with the recipe in hand and The Day arriving quickly, that I could shop for the green bean dish since I was there in the store. Next week the stores are going to be nightmares and if I can limit my exposure to the horror, I will thank myself. I'm hoping to make up my mind desert-wise sooner rather than later.

The casserole is : Green beans, bacon, onions, mushrooms, garlic, milk, sharp cheddar cheese, sour cream,  Frenches crispy onions.  Not your Mother's green bean casserole I would image, My Mother didn't make it and I never ate it, so I don't know, it may be a very low end version of it, there may be some very fancy version that you are used to and if so, post the recipe. I think  this one  reads like it should be really good.

This is going to be a project, its going to be a good project and one that is going to be worth it, but I hope that everyone is as excited by the prospect of being faced with  a plate of fancy green bean casserole as I am.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


I spent the early evening watching Law and Order - Criminal Intent reruns and then I did some much needed cleaning. Sum Total of my evening.

Since I put vent covers over the vent in my office I haven't been dizzy, nauseous, lethargic or confused while at work.  The vent covers went on and my problem disappeared. Poof.  I spoke with the safety officer today about doing an air quality test, and he said off hand, that it sounded like what was happening to me was carbon monoxide poisoning and he hoped the blocked vents didn't make everyone else ill. Thanks buddy.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Yay for Tuesday!

I got Garland 1 finished. I bought the thickest most festive holidayesque looking yarn I could find and I brought it home with the idea of finger weaving my way to a garland - I started with the traditional four-finger pattern, but for some reason that lead to the yarn snapping left right and center, it also made for a very thick garland, which I wanted but it went through yarn like an RV goes through gas. It was not a good idea.

I really wanted to so something with the yard though! It was very hard to find a thick yarn that wasn't the color of dust or dirt or wet snow. Lots of grays and tans and browns that blend well with everything except Christmas Trees!  The Super!Happy!Yay!Christmas! yarn I was looking for was not sold at Michaels, what was sold was a bright pattern that is supposed to be used to knit socks or slippers, it's garish and not really the brand of festive that I went to the store for or had in mind, but, it is bright and it would look nice on a blingy tree.

I changed course and went with the two finger version, and that one worked out, it still went through three skeins of yarn, but I ended up with a reasonable length of garland, that I am hoping is thick enough to read as "garland", I didn't measure it and I'm not sure how much garland makes up a tree's worth. I think I have enough to at the very least, decorate the tree a bit.

Garland 2 is going to be distinctly different and harder but hopefully, longer. Its going to be made of pompoms and paper straws and thread. I need to figure out a good pattern for the poms and the straw so that I can spread them both out. I may end up having to get more pompoms. I wanted to make pompoms but that proved to be too much work and it required some talent.

I'm pretty sure that to be successful at a craft project the craft project can not require a great deal of skill or dedication. I need more or less instant gratification when it comes to my hit and miss craft project phases, if its too much work or it requires some skill set that I gawd forbid, will have to learn - its not going to happen. My best craft skill is turning on the TV and watching other people do crafts or looking at web sites at pictures of other peoples crafts.

Today I also went along with my demographic and pre- bought Adele's new album. I was going to say that they can market to everyone else and leave me out  their reindeer games thank you very much, but I really like Hello. although it was an acquired taste, I had to hear it quite a few times before I liked it, but, sometimes you just have to allow marketing to work and just let it wash over you. I figured I would get it eventually, I might as well just get it over with. Sigh.

Monday, November 16, 2015


Terrible news from Paris, it's not fair and no one deserves to have hell dumped on their heads and to bleed in the streets. I changed my facebook profile picture in solidarity.

The terrorists made a terrible mistake though, you NEVER mess with Parisian real estate, these people gave up their Jews instead of  putting their landmarks in danger. I wouldn't worry about their capacity to do whatever they have to to defend themselves . The government of France may have lacked spines and morals, but their people kept the Nazis spinning in circles until the world's infantries arrived.

They all ready started bombing Raqqa. Good, no one lives there anymore. Bomb them back to the stone age, salt the earth and pour concrete over it.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Friday Cat Blogging

Really hates the paparazzi today.


I think they need to check the air quality in my office. Since we moved upstairs I've noticed that its a lot warmer but I think the warm air is bad for us. I think I'm getting some sort of brain cloud from it.

I vacuumed the yard yesterday, and then while I was working on one side of the yard, the friendly neighborhood yard man came over and air blew a lot of the leaves. The yard looked really good for about fifteen minutes, by this evening you couldn't even tell anything had been done, except that I picked up all the dog bombs Rocket left in the yard the week he refused to go into the soupy back yard. He was much more insulted by getting rained on in the back yard than the front yard, the rain in he front was less wet I guess. I mulched the leaves up good for the yard though, I hope next seasons weeds appreciate the gesture.

I think the weather is about the change, my head hurts and I'm really tired. It feels much letter than 8:30, it feels like an hour or so later, I just checked the time because I was afraid I had been messing around too long and it was actually like hours later. I have had a big day though. I went to an Christmas open house and before that I power walked the dog, ate dinner way too fast and ran out the door. It was less amazing that it has been in years past but I think I thought that last year too. They changed how they do the displays and its significantly less magical then it used to be. I want to be floored by the display and I just haven't been lately. And there wasn't any good snacks! If I'm going to leave my house and go out for something, at the very least, I want good snacks.

I've been using the dog as a pillow, its great! He's warm and squishy and he cuddles, but he also farts. Its a challenge.

Thursday, November 12, 2015


I was supposed to tell you that I was taking yesterday off, but I forgot, I took yesterday off because it was a day off  for state employee workers, so  I did. Now you know.

Rocket woke me up earlier than I had wanted to be awake because he needed to pee, he told me he needed to pee by starting to peeing. So we both got up and I took him outside to finish up. I did the whole cleaning up job and went back to bed because I could.

I  then slept too late, I should have gotten up with him hen he wanted to get up, and did chores and got some things done. Instead I slept very late, which I regret, and then I had cake for breakfast, which I do not regret.

Rocket and I needed to take advantage of the day off and the shockingly not rainy weather and so we went for a long walk on the green way . We saw lots of sunning turtles and a great blue heron.

I brought Rocket home and ate lunch,

I wanted to go downtown and go shopping in peace, its so busy down there on the weekends and First Fridays are crowd scenes and I wanted to shop without the pressure. Downtown stores haven't figured out that they need to have hours that go past 5pm, so I never get to go during the week.

The fact  I wanted to go walking downtown, without the dog, came as huge shock to the dog, who believes that I need him to accompany me everywhere - Which is fine if I want to walk past stores, which is very convenient if you want to window shop, not so much if you want to do actual shopping. I do not need supervision for that, or I do, actually, because of my bad choice making, its gift buying season and everything looks like I should gift it to someone. The dog does not help me make decisions about gift buying I ended up buying one thing - A dog shaped ornament. of course,

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Wet little dog

Poor dog. All the doors have rain on the other side. He goes to the front door and it's raining, he goes to the back door and its raining, its raining on all the places he likes to pee.

He goes to the front door and I say "Okay, let's go out!"  and there is rain out there too! And he doesn't want to go out in it, and then he goes to the back door, and while the carport is there, he can't always use the carport to relieve himself. He looks very sad and he then has to talk himself into going into the rain to do what he has to do and he goes back and forth and tries to make himself think he really doesn't have to really go out there but he knows he has to go out there and so he tries to find the least wet place where the rain isn't falling as hard and there is no such place.

The poor guy just wants to go out and do his business and everywhere he goes he gets rained on. The back yard is especially wet and rainy and he doesn't like it at all. The front yard seems a little less rainy and he will go there if he really can't hold it anymore but its wet there too! Its so depressing for him, you can tell he feels really bad about the wetness. He has issues with water and everywhere he goes, there is all this water and it si aiming at him!

  He hates running water of all kinds and he is out there and its just pouring rain on his poor self. He goes out under the carport to pee, but it's wet there now too and he just looks so betrayed. It was raining earlier today too and I thought by now it would have stopped and he could go take a good poo in the yard without getting wet, but it wasn't to be, he had to hurry and you could tall it wasn't at all satisfactory.

And of course, I do not love the rain either and he keeps saying he needs to go out so we go out and he just wanders around under the carport and pokes his nose into the backyard, but all you can see there are puddles and he really doesn't like puddles and then he looks to the front yard but there is all this rain between him and the grass and when he gets to the grass, he gets rained on too. I think he would be happiest in a desert environment. Of course, I have to follow him on these tours and I really love getting wet too. So much fun. AT least its not too cold out, wet and cold would be really miserable.

It keeps raining though and I am going to teach him to use the cats box.

Monday, November 9, 2015


I threw up at work on Friday. Twice. Super end to a super week.

Saturday, I slept and recovered from what I am thinking was the 12 hour flu  - I spent my recovery doing some very low key shopping for my Christmas garland. I like having a garland on my tree, but new tree is made of garland, a store bought model isn't going to do it for me or it. I spent some time on Pinterest and saw an idea for a DIY garland that works for me because it does not require sewing and it not shiney - shiney being a problem with a tree that is one great big piece of bling, I need something matte in order for it to stand out.

Seeing a great idea and making the great idea reality is not the same thing. Its easy to look at pictures, not tos easy to make the thing yourself. This is the idea , and this is what it is supposed to look like

It doesn't look hard, it does look like it requires a lot of very big pom poms and they are expensive and not easy to find, many, many tiny pom poms? Everywhere. Bigger pom poms? Not so much, unless you want to make them yourself and I tried and failed. We'll see how this turns out. In the mean time, I bought supplies

I think I may need to get more pom poms.

I was more hands on with my other project, I did more dog cookies, one batch of peanut butter and one more of cheese. I'm going to do turkey gravy next and then more peanut butter. I'm going to try to not go crazy with the varieties this year because it gets me crazy and I don't think the dogs care that much, the people may or may not understand they are different flavors, so why make eleventyteen different kinds? Doesn't make sense really.

On the right, cheese, on the left peanut butter. They are just settling into their long nap in a slowly cooling oven. By morning they will be ready to go into the freezer to rest until they are ready to be sent off to their new homes.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Friday Cat Blogging

I have got to get this guy some toys.


It took me an embarrassingly long time to remember that I have a dehumidifier that lives in the basement and it is in the basement  so that it can help dry it out after a flood. It works a lot better than a  box fan. Its job isn't just to make the air move around a little bit, its job is to pull humidity from the air and in general make the environment more dry and less wet  Yup. Works like a charm once you turn it on.

It even smells less gross now.  A full two days later, only hours after I turned it on.

So smart.

I am hoping if I can dry out my little corner of the world it might send a hint to the greater world that it would really great if it would stop raining for just a while, it would be swell. Its been gray and over cast and damp for weeks and it's making me very tired. I don't really wake up any more. I just go from sleeping in my bed to sleeping on my feet. It does not make me a more efficient worker.

Right now I need to get the trash out to the curb, but it seems like such a big job to go and gather everything from around the house and then take the bin to the curb. It also feels like it must be very late at night because it feels like its been dark for hours.  It doesn't help that I've been so busy since I came home from work, it just feels like a very long day all ready and its not over yet

. I realized on my drive home that I forgot my phone at work, such a smart thing to do! So now I had to factor in going back to go back to the office into my evening so I could get my phone - but I couldn't do it right away because I would be burning daylight and I needed to walk the dog, in the day light if at all possible. So walked dog in the daylight. Came home, was tired form the rush walk. Watched a little TV and set out to go to Sams to pick up a prescription that also needed to get picked up today,  then went to the office on the way back before stopping at McDs because by now I was starving.

Came home and finished my meal and fed the dog. I'm so tired I can barely follow the plot to whatever cop show I am trying to watch. I'm DVRing three different show right now (Law and Order, Law and Order Criminal Intent, NYPD Blue) and unless I'm really paying attention they all start to run together. I think Lenny Brisco and Sipowicz would have been great together and they would have kicked that fidgety spaze Gorans' ass to the curb before the first commercial break. And as much of an asshole as David Caruso was, he was terrific as John Kelly, its too bad being an asshole was so much of who he was for so long. I've never been able to enjoy the other cop show he was on because the drab guy he played was such a wet blanket and was such a looser with the damned sunglasses. John Kelly didn't need props.


Once I did get up to take care of the garbage I knew I was then going to have take the recycling out and empty the dishwasher and fill the dishwasher and get my things ready for the morning and do all that kind of work. I'm glad I did it because I get really judgy about dirty dishes in the sink no matter how often and how long mine stay there, I think its trashy behavior, even if it is my behavior. Its like an unmade bed, it says something about you even if no one is there to say it.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Drying out

A better, drier day. The very nice man came when he was scheduled, lit the pilot in a flash, hardly charged me anything and and left me plenty of time to walk the dog in the daylight. My basement smells like dead things now, but I'm sure as the space drys out the odor will diminish. Hopefully. Or there is a sizable population of dead things down there and I never knew until now. Wow.

I mean there could be, I don't spend much time peeking into the dark corners down there and I don't really want to know whats hanging around in the dark corners down there. Now the dark corner things I don't want to know about are both dead and damp! Super combination.

Or a single thing got down there and died, I could see a mouse or rat but the smell isn't decomp, its really more wet-ish. I don't know, I;m sure I'll have time to figure it out.  Its a new thing, the basement has flooded in the past but it doesn't normally have a smell to it.  I am hopeing that its actually old cat food that I put down there after Tex died.  Maybe I'm being haunted by the ghost of old cat food? It could happen, I would like it to happen because I don't want to have a mystery dead thing to contend with.

I'm keeping the basement door open and I have a fan running and it should dry out and get less smelly over time. Or something else will creep down there and die and I'll have a whole  gross circle of life thing going on down there,

Despite the ickiness, I'm in a better mood than I was yesterday post-flood. I had been in a good mood pre-flood because there is finally a Chinese takeout place  near by! Its not the greatest food, but its Chinese takeout! Down the street! I can have it any time! Its not the beef and green bean paradise that I used to eat lunch at, but I'll have to ask about the status of that dish. I did enjoy the beef and broccoli and they were very cool about not making me have rice with the meal. Lots of beef too!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


One of my rain boots has hole. Not a big deal unless you are wading in your basement.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

DIY Hell

I have this very sexy, very blingy tree. It's gorgeous and looks like a stack of diamonds. Diamonds are gorgeous but they also can be cold, I decided I needed something to warm my blingy tree up.

I started to think about materials that are warm, materials that are available and materials that all ready come in decorations. My first stop was yarn and felt.

I am upping the level of difficulty here because I have a palette I want to kind of stick too as well and I'm kind of working on a vision for the whole thing too. There are a lot of yarny felty things out there that would just not do.

Enter the wide, sick world of DIY.

Have you ever gone to Pinterest? It is an evil, evil place where they lie - but they tell such pretty, decorative lies that you hardly notice you are being lied to. Everything there is gorgeous ostensibly, not that hard to do because there it is, done and with directions! Every craft project is fully explained. Lies all lies. But the photography is beautiful and the ideas are fantastic. All Lies.

But I saw all these really brilliant ideas! I saw gorgeous felt garlands that would be stunning on the tree, I saw DIY pompoms that would be perfect! The place in brimming with solutions and directions and how to videos! I spent a couple of hours there and came out with the idea that I Could Do It! I Could Do Anything! I just needed some yarn!

So I went to Micheals and bought some yarn! I even found the Perfect Yarn! If its not on the tree, it has to be somewhere in the house because it is exactly right for something, I'm just not sure what and whatever it is can only use one roll because that was all there was of it. I bought two rolls,  the Perfect Yarn and a secondary roll for practice.

So far, things are not going well. I tried to make pompoms and it didn't work out, its a lot harder than it looks in the videos. I tried finger weaving, which I am all ready good at but it is not s great garland because its very thin. I would have to get very thick yarn and I didn't think about that and I;m pretty sure really thick yarn is 1) expensive and 2) Not festive.

I understand finger weaving all ready though, understanding helps a lot. I thought that if  four fingers turn out too thin a product, how about ten? That would surely be much, much wider and a much better garland contender, right? I could use nails in stead of fingers and I could just weave it! I can do it on my own hand, how hard could it be on a not hand?

Hard. It turns out it was hard. It may be the height of the table or where the nails are or   something  because whatever it is, it was not easy and I could not make it work! I think I can make it work though because it shouldn't be a hard task. You would think. I would have thought. I have work to do.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Halloween Weekend

I hope you hade a good weekend! I had a great weekend!

Friday night Dogger and I went downtown and attened a doggy costume contest/party . We did not win, I didn't expect to, Rocket is a pure breed and he's large and he isn't a rescue. Small rescued mutts almost always win. Rocket has  good life, he doesn't need more accolades.

He looked terrific though and we heard many compliments about his costume and his general comportment. I was shocked that so many dogs couldn't climb stairs or walk a platform. My dog was a super model.

Here are the other competitors, sorry the pictures are not great, it was inside and flash would not have been appropriate as those dogs were freaked out all ready.

Saturday night we went to Oakwood to check out the Halloween house and do some people watching

Right from Halloween to Christmas. My new tree arrived and I "needed" to set it up and make sure it works. The lights were kind of a bear to get right but once I figured out where to plug what, it turned out beautifully. Christmas around here is going to be really, really sparkly.