••• Friday, April 24, 2009

Better Than a Stick in the Eye. Candy. Friday. 

While on a walk at the cottage a couple weeks back, I found some pussy willow branches along the road. I never really understood the big attraction, but my mom always loved them. And as a child, to bring her a fistful of fur-nugget switches, guaranteed at least a couple of hours of good favor.

It must have been out of habit then, that I spent several minutes wrestling with the branches, to twist them free. Back at the cottage I put them in a vase and set them on the table. An hour later, I noticed the sun shining on them, through the window, which gave me the idea to take some pictures. After a round of duds inside the cottage, I brought the vase to porch. And those pictures were better.

And moving them to the sand was even better.
Then we went closer to the water.
Then we were practically in the water.

Next thing you know, we have a lovely spray of pussy spring on the beach.

The Bub Electric

Last week I posted this picture of the kids chasing and popping bubbles. A few days ago I noticed something weird around this girl's right hand. Upon closer inspection I realized that I caught a shot of the bubble as it disintegrated on her fingertips. I just wish it were a bit clearer.

Sorry for the yawner post, but I tired.


••• Saturday, April 18, 2009

Claw and Odor: Ovum Easy 

Duck, Duck, Goos.
If I had a dollar for every time a child on my street said "Dead Squirrel" or "Duck Eggs" this week, I'd have enough money to start a foundling home for orphaned rodents and unhatched babies whose parents have run afowl of the law.

It all started Thursday, when the kids found an abandoned nest of duck eggs in a pile of brush on our street. Upon closer investigation, they noticed that one of the eggs was broken in half, yolk and whites still intact and in full, horrific view.

Apparently, to a pack of suburban-esque, early elementary aged children,there is nothing more heinous than the unprovoked murder of...a duck. Yolk.

Once they got past the initial shock and horror, they moved into the next stage of grief: Blame.

First, they turned it on one another.

1st grader Pooky says he saw 2nd grader Jody near the brush pile yesterday, and is pretty sure he saw her touch an egg. And everyone knows that the human touch on an unhatched egg is the touch of death. Jody, of course, denied all the charges.

Morning Kindergartner then announced that while the full day students were at school that afternoon, he saw Morning Young Fives looking in the pile of brush while holding a stick. Morning Young Fives was taking his afternoon nap at the time of this discussion, so could neither confirm nor deny the charges.

That's when someone saw the squirrel in the road. Well-dead and weller-flattened. (Cabana later took responsibility for the latter flatter, but swears the creature was already dead when he hit it, and didn't see the carcus in time to swerve. We're keeping that information under our hats for now. Your cooperation in the latter, flatter matter is appreciated.)

According to Cakers, Tank the 2nd grader went directly into the street to look at The-Placemat-Furmerly-Known-as-Squirrel, up close. He returned to the group with a confirmation of dead and to also report the observed presence of blood and yellow stuff that looked exactly like, you guessed it, egg yolk.

That night, everyone went to bed believing that the squirrel did it.

But if you've ever watched the real Law and Order on T.V., you know that any case proclaimed solved before 9:40 will be unsolved and resolved at least 2 more times before the end of the show.

Case in Point: Friday, 3:45 P.M.
The children gather once again at the scene of the crime. My Cakers included. After about 5 minutes of loud arguing, which I could hear from three houses down and across the street, I decided that the situation called for some wise, adult presence. Because I was the only adult available, we had to settle for mere adult.

Once I arrived on the scene, I was informed that the post-mortem case against the squirrel had been thrown out on the grounds that, according to Morning Kindergartner, squirrels only eat nuts, berries and plants. No eggs.

Color The Squirrel villified.

With no other leads, the investigation once more turned to Jody. By now, several more witnesses had stepped forward to say that they also saw Jody near the broken egg and are pretty sure she touched it.

Jody starts screaming and stamping her feet. While this behavior does not bode well for the rest of the eggs still in the brush, just inches from her feet, it works nicely as a defense strategy, in that the investigation quickly returns to the animal kingdom for the perpetrator.

Goose? No one's ever seen one around here.

Skunk? Definite possibility, but discussion quickly turned into several anectdotal sidebars.

Snapping Turtle? 3rd grader says she saw one in her back yard last summer.Young Fives supports the theory because he heard the snapping sound of a snapping turtle just last night, outside his bedroom window when he was trying to fall asleep. As he told his tale, he snapped his fingers a few times to show how it was done. 3rd grader sneers that snapping turtles don't snap their fingers, because they don't have fingers and he's lying. Mortified by chastisement, Young Fives shuts right up.

Because I'm slightly disturbed, by nature, I could not fight the urge to poke at the process with, "Well, I've seen quite a few raccoons around here...and they loooove duck eggs." After several seconds of silence, Unnamed 2nd Grade Boy confirmed my testimony, which started an entirely new discussion about raccoons. This quickly went no where, however, after it became apparent that most of the participants were confusing Raccoons with Possums.

At 4:12, the investigation turned one more time, to Jody. And at 4:15, the jury returned a guilty verdict against her. Jody immediately remanded herself home,in tears.

Case solved?

Not quite.

The above picture was taken after dinner, about 6:30, when a segment of the crime team again gathered on the mound of death. There was more arguing, but I couldn't hear what they were arguing about. I did, however, think a picture was finally in order.

After a while, the group disbanded to join in on more age-appropriate distractions already in play.

But what would a great crime story be without an epilogue?
Like a duck egg frittata without orange sauce.

After the last bubble was burst, they gathered once again.

Even though they had solved the case, there was still the issue of the eggs. What should be done with them?

Of course,an argument ensued.

Some of the kids thought the eggs were best left where they are.
Another argued it was too dangerous of a spot, and they wouldn't be safe.

What if the mother comes back for the eggs?
No way. The mother is gone. No thanks to Jody contaminating them with her human-ness.

What will happen to the baby ducks? Who will take care of them?

3rd Grader announces that she is going to take the remaining eggs into her home to keep warm and nurture until the ducklings were born.

What will she do with the baby ducks?

With a tone of authority she says "We'll give them away to poor people, because they can't afford to get their own." ::This is a true quote. I heard it myself. Swear to Gosh-ling::

::I know. A post for another day.::

Anyway. After the plan was approved by all, Third Grader ran home to share the exciting news with her mother. About one minute later she returns and blandly states, "My mom says we can't touch the eggs and have to stay away from the eggs and we need to stop talking about the eggs."

Case closed.

As I type this, all the kids are working together to set up a lemonade stand, the proceeds of which will go to charity.

And that's the end of my tale.

Speaking of tails, isn't this one bodacious?

If I had to have a tail, that's exactly what I'd be talking about.


••• Tuesday, April 14, 2009

10 Thangs 

I liked today's topic for 10 Things Tuesday, so I'm biting.

Ten Signs That You're Getting Older
1) Your boss was not even born yet, when "Brandy" by Looking Glass was the number one hit in the nation.

2) Your tummy is bigger, rounder,and firmer than your ass.

3) Whenever you tell a story about your past, you include statements like "I remember because Aunt Annabelle was pregnant with JoJo,and wearing that ridiculous maternity dress with the watermelon print, and Chappy was 9 months old when JoJo was born and now Chappy's 37, which means Margaret really did see grandpa pass Aunt Crystal the bottle of Mad Dog, just before the outhouse caught fire..."

4)You find yourself suddenly and inexplicably attracted to late model Cadillac sedans.

5) You don't get creeped out when the father of a high school classmate gives you an "appreciative" glance.

6) You get a little creeped out when you realize that old guy IS your high school classmate, who was more than a little creepy back in high school.

7) You can remember when dogs ran free and sometimes two dogs would play on the railroad tracks and somehow their butts would get stuck together and you would feel kind of weird when you stopped and stared and then you ran home but didn't tell your mom what you saw because you were afraid that you did something wrong by looking at it and she would yell at you and tell you to stay off the railroad tracks. Again.

8) You throw out your back just brushing your teeth.

9) You remember when a "C" cup was considered big.

10) You realize that you don't need a pretty body to have a great sex life; just love, trust and lots of practice.


••• Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Eye Friday 

Sun, Surf, Sand and Snowsuits?
Spring Break, of course.

We arrived at the cottage last night, with plenty of time before nightfall, for Cakers to engage in her usual Spring Break Arrival At the Cottage Ritual: Play on the beach, regardless of the weather.

Cakers found her bucket and shovel. And gloves.

Cheddar found a huge stick.

And I, of course, found lots of pixel fodder.

Today we went into town, where I stopped at the yarn shop to pick up a circular knitting needle I need to finish Ingenue. Then we stopped at the bead store, where I picked up some beads to make stitch markers.

Then I had to stop at the local lake to observe and shoot the current floe of excitement.

Back at the cottage, I spent an hour uploading and playing with my new pictures. Then I worked a bit on my Super Challenge Sudoku puzzle (it has letters and numbers). When my eyes starting bleeding from working over those very tiny squares, I took a break to blog a post.

I think I have too many hobbies.

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••• Thursday, April 09, 2009

Spring Break of the Hairline Fracture Variety 

Limping Through Life With Two Left Eyes. And I Ain't Lion.
Tuesday night we took Cakers to see The Lion King on campus at Michigan State. Of course, it was spectacular. At least that's what I hear. No, I was there, but for some reason I couldn't see the characters very clearly, despite my having put in brand clean contact lenses that day, as well as there being not a bad seat in the house of The Wharton Center.

The next day I put those same contacts in my eyes before driving Cakers to her grandparents' house for a sleepover. Three blocks into the excursion I realized that my vision was not so crisp and clean. I certainly could see cars and stop lights, so we weren't in any real danger. I did miss the turnoff to my in-laws' sub division, but that is a routine event. You see, their subdivision is named Hidden Hills, and I fall for it every time.

Once home, I checked the packaging from which I took my lenses the night before. Oops. I am near sighted, so my left eye lens is considerably weaker than my right, which allows for me to read things close up. That night, I put left eye lenses in both eyes.

No wonder I mistook the Momma Lions for polar bears.

It's the Little Stuff. And Stuff.
I realize I've been pretty whiney around here over the past few months. So today I'm going to find some good stuff to talk about.

Following is a list of some little things that have been good to me:
1) What's this here sauce? Worcestershire Sauce. My mom always had a 3/4 full bottle in her fridge, which she would eventually throw out, 3/4 full. Over the years I ended up following that same pattern, buying it for one recipe, and throwing the rest away a year later.

Not anymore. I've gone through at least 2 bottles in the last six months. I lurve it. It's especially wonderful on Crock Pot pot roast. You get browning without browning.

2) Eta Zeta, and I'm really full. In Fact, I couldn't Eat an Iota of Another Bite.. Cavender's Seasoning

The food page editor of our local newspaper recently shared that this seasoning is a key element of her kitchen repetoire. I had never heard of it. I'm on my second container since Christmas.

3) The Simple White Blouse. I've never had good luck with the plain white blouse. Being of smallish frame with biggish boob, it was always hard to find the right fit. If it fit the boobs, it was big in the shoulder or too blousy at the waist. If it fit the shoulders, I was indecently exposed. Last fall I found the perfect white blouse at Kohl's. It has a touch of spandex, so it fits right, in all the wrong places. I've been wearing it to death, since then, and it has opened up a few corners of my closet that have not been available to me for awhile.

That's my Mondo tank that was a bit too bulky to wear sleeveless. Since buying this blouse it has become a favorite in my wardrobe rotation.

3) Dewy, Dewy, Dewy Dew you Love Me? A few weeks back Mariko reviewed some lotion she bought on Ebay from a Korean vender. I ended up following Mariko's link to a blog, where other products from this vender were reviewed. One item caught my eye.

It's a foundation that automatically adjusts to your skin tone color, with fair warning that it works best with fair skin. Which would be me, yes, the same She of Dark Hair and Brow.(I can't tell you how many times I've argued with the overdressed, dummern-a-box-of-clouds Clinique drone wanting to put medium toned foundation on me. I always give in, of course, only because I really enjoy the ensuing moment of silence, just before the apology.)

Anyway. I bought some. And I love it. I think it's the best foundation I've worn since turning old. Or older. It's moist without slime, it minimizes wrinkles, and leaves my skin looking all dewy. In fact, I wasn't really sure what "dewy skin" meant. But now I do. The service was great too.

And not only my skin look better, my entire future is looking mighty fine.

Speaking of a trouble-free future, my husband just got home from work and is now reading this over my shoulder. ::This would have irritated me to no not that long ago, but since my No More Trouble existence, irritation just rolls off my dewy skin.:: I'm pretty sure he is reading for clues as to how ready (i.e. packed) we are to leave for the cottage this afternoon.

So, I better get going. I'm pretty sure that the definition of No More Trouble has its limitations.


••• Monday, April 06, 2009

(Spring) Breaking Up Ain't Hard to Do 

Against the same odds as intelligent life successfully clinging to my brain, or a 5th of Vanilla Rum successfully clinging to my cupboard,I somehow finished all my reports before spring break.

And no thanks to the efforts of my alleged loved ones, some of whom made no short work of getting in the way of mine.

That's a file for a report that she's sitting on. I can't tell you how many times I swatted her off that pile of papers, night after night. I finally thought to put out a decoy file on the opposite side of the keyboard, near the beads.

She initially fell for it, but didn't take long to figure out that I wasn't looking at "her pile" at all. When she noticed that I didn't yell at her for playing with the Super Glue bottles, the jig was up. (Or is it jib?) By that point, she could have gone off and glued herself to the inside of the dryer drum, and I'd have been right behind her, with a sheet of Bounce.

The Bounce is Back in My Spring
I'm having a wonderful, relaxing Spring Break so far. I haven't left the house since Friday, except to fetch my daughter from the neighbor's house. Otherwise I've been making up for time lost these past weeks, on a few of my favorite things:
1) Watching...Three missed episodes of NCIS, in one sitting. On Demand. I also caught an episode from a few seasons back. It was the one where Zeva's character debuted, with the air of a mercenary and the eyebrows of a young Ed Asner.

And then there's Tough Love.
And CSI Miami.
And The Mentalist.

2) Knitting...Ingenue. I'm almost done with the body.

I have to ball up another skank of yarn and knit another inch before starting on the bottom trim. I made some adaptations on the pattern, as I went along. It seems that my gauge was off a bit and it's fitting snugger than I anticipated. That snug is working the breastesses pretty well, but in the pooch area I prefer a bit more to be left to the imagination.

3) Realizing...That a garmet knits up much quicker when one has time and opportunity to actually, well, knit on it.

Case not in point...

4) Appreciating...The little things,like a seven year-old who gets herself breakfast in the morning and lets a tired momma sleep in a little.

Who's Got the Biggest Balls of Them All?
As I've gotten older, I've developed an appreciation for music that I didn't really care for when I was younger, such as AC/DC.

This past Saturday night, while watching my Spartans play basketball, I surprised both myself and my husband by bursting into the following:
T.N.T. They're dynamite
T.N.T. They'll win the fight
T.N.T. They're a power load
T.N.T. Watch them explode!
Which reminds me, it's almost time to...
Lock up your daughter.
Lock up your wife.
Lock up your back door,
And run for your life.
The Spartans are back in town.
Don't you mess them around.

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