Saturday, January 23, 2010

Things seem to be out of order.

The theme for today seems to be things hanging out where they don't belong. First, I make breakfast, whipping up my normal kale and egg feast. The kale seems a little dirtier than usual. And there was one leaf that was very dirty and very holey. I didn't think too much about it, but when I was putting the bag away, I saw the visitor.......

Free escargot for breakfast.

Then, I'm pruning my hedge (yes the hedge and I still have a weekly date - I finished the entire side of the house and I'm turning the corner to the back yard) and I noticed a huge piece of cement hanging out in the hedge????? The question is, how the heck did a huge piece of cement get into my hedge? It made me think of the meteor that just fell out of the sky and landed in a doctor's office in virginia. Except, why would a piece of cement fall from the sky?

The top picture is to give an idea of size, the bottom location.
The question, why? or how?

Anyhow, let's hope, for the rest of the day, everything stays in it's proper place.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Shaking Things Up!

Today I had a mid morning work meeting out in Renton and as a result I got to shake up my day a bit. The results were fabulous! It's amazing how jumping out of your routine can change your outlook. I have been Chipper McSkipper (to quote an old friend) all day!

Here's what happened. First, in crossfit, we did 'chest to bar' pull ups (ie when you pull up you not only have to get your chin over the bar, but you have to get up so high your chest hits the bar). I had never done these before and didn't think I could. However, it turns out I could not only do a few, but I was able to do them throughout the work out. Conquering a new difficult skill really jump started the day.

Next, Otto and I drove out to Renton. Which really isn't very exciting on its own, but it was sunny and warm here today (probably close to 60). And I was wearing short sleeves. And I was outside in the sun, soaking in some vitamin D and not just watching from my window at work. It made me happy.

Finally, I spent the rest of the day working from home. Otto whined and got to go out into the yard about 20 times. I got to eat roasted veggies fresh from the oven during a conference call. And Daisy got to spend some quality time sitting on my lap while I worked. I listened to Britney Spears (for some reason I was in a VERY poppy mood).

All in all, a happy escape from the drudge that is a typical work day. Yippee for mid week breaks. And now, in honor of the excitement and because I am sure you've been missing them, some gratuitous Otto shots.

Wonderful, wonderful day!!!

So exciting I had to get up and flip over. whooooo.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Turbo Charged

Imagine this flashing and changing continually!

A few month ago, I wrote a 'guilty pleasure' blog about brickbreaker. I played it on my blackberry. It was a nice happy game. As I mentioned in my blog, I used it to lull myself to sleep before naps. It had a nice soporific quality. Well, I finally got my iphone! ( I'm not going to blog about that now, but I will mention it's about the coolest thing ever.) And, one of the first things I did was download a brickbreak 'app'. (iphones are all about apps, or applications - ie cool things you can do on your phone). The iphone has Brickbreaker 3D. WOAH. This game is intense. There are flashing colors and lights and changing colors and flashing lights and everything happens really quickly. There is also brickbreaker revolution 3D that is level changing, so you don't just finish one level, but you move back and forth between multiple levels. I might explain it more fully, but I'm not sure I knew what the heck was going on most of the time. Phew.

There are warnings every time you start a game that the game can produce epileptic seizures in some people. And frankly, I'm not sure why I didn't get a seizure. I did my normal thing of playing to induce a nap. And then when I tried to nap my brain was just zipping and there were white lights flashing through my brain. I felt like adrenaline was pumping through my body. Ah, for the sweet simpler days. How do the kids do it? That was 20 minutes of playing. What would hours of this thing do to you?

Monday, January 11, 2010

Happy Birthday Dad

Self portrait. I seem to be developing his eyebrows.

Today 1/11/10 would have been my dad's 72nd birthday. That's probably not as exciting as his birthday next year (1/11/11!), but worth recognizing. My dad had three loves (well, three non human loves) golf (scratch golfer), reading (voracious might not quite describe it), and photography. He was a great, though a bit quirky photographer. I thought in honor of his birthday I'd share a few of his photos. It's really hard to chose just a few, but here goes.

Oh, and for all you photographers out there, my dad developed his photos really dark. The scanner lightened them up a good bit. He might have been disappointed.

There was a long 'chair in the corner of the room' series. We all posed.

Smiling was greatly discouraged in all photographs.

This whole series involved an extra long exposure time (60 seconds or so). I must have been very adapt at bubble blowing. Also, note the objects on the table and in the lower right. These evolved (ie died) as the series went on. I know at least one of the items in the lower right was a cantaloupe that slowly withered and wrinkled.

On the back this one reads 'susanne was 3' written by someone who
was probably not much more than 3 and maybe didn't know her name had a z in it?

On the back this one reads 'bee with flower, non living'.

On the back of this one, 'Weed with Dog, Living'

I love this one.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Guilty Pleasure # ? - Reality TV

My reality tv experience began long long ago with inception of reality tv. Way back in the day (1996 maybe), I lived with a couple friends in a cute duplex in Madrona. Through no efforts of our own (we think the downstairs neighbor was responsible) we discovered at one point that we had cable. And with cable came MTV and with MTV came The Real World. And with TRW came my realization that I have no control of myself when it comes to reality tv. It sucks me in, holds me in its grip, and spits me out like little else in life. I have no idea which installment of TRW I got attached to, but I was a goner. When that show was on I didn't want to make plans, I didn't want to answer the phone, I was busy.

In 1997 (I think, or 1998 I can never remember) I bought a house and left the tv and cable behind. My new house was on the bottom of a big hill and there was no tv reception without cable. I decided my life would be greatly enhanced without either. For 7 or 8 years I was tv free. (This should not be confused with a change to enlightenment and the pursuit of philosophic adventures. Please see guilty pleasure blog about murder mysteries to see where my brain turned). Then I moved to Beacon Hill. Beacon Hill did not have the cute little video store that allowed dogs and served popcorn and as a result I turned to Netflix. AND, re found tv. First through Netflix and then finally on demand, streamed through the web.

I stayed off reality tv for a while. Then, at one point, I watched a couple of the final episodes of The Bachelor. This led to further seasons of the Bachelor and recently The Biggest Loser. These shows are like a car crash. You don't want to watch. Watching them is painful. But you can't turn away. The Bachelor for some reason always makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside (am I really admitting this), but at the same time it's so annoying. There is nothing real about it. And by this I don't mean that it's scripted, but most of the people on it aren't there to find love. They are there to make some sort of a name for themselves. Also, it's completely trite and cliche. The main characters are interviewed over and over again, and after an episode or two, they are just rehashing. And I can't stay away. Why?? The Biggest Loser is intriguing, both because I don't understand how someone can get to be 400 pounds and because these people are completely rethinking their lives. But it's redundant - well they both are. In both these shows they show the same snippets over and over and over. Each show is 90 minutes, yet new content is probably close to 45 minutes. The rest of the time they are recapping or showing us what's going to happen in the future. It's painful. Why is it that I get so sucked into these things? Maybe it's because reality takes you out of your own life and your own issues and sticks you into someone else. Your life looks better because you're not the mess these people are. Or maybe it's because these people change? They lose 200 pounds. Or they fall 'madly in love' (maybe). So, it allows you to believe it can happen to you too?

So now, my dilemma and what will hopefully cure me of my reality obsessing for at least a season. TB and TBL just started new seasons simultaneous. So, if I were to tune in, by Wednesday I would have 180 minutes of reality tv to watch during the rest of the week. And so far, I have not been able to chose one or the other or stomach the possibility of filling my brain with that much crap. We'll see how I do in the next 10 weeks!

Post mark: Acckk. I was just surfing the web looking for pictures to attach to this blog and I am starting to feel the pull. Must step away from the computer, sorry for the lack of photos!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Project Hedge, part 2

Okay, I have had a request for a new posting, because someone is not so happy with my last posting's picture. This new blog may not be so interesting to most of you. In fact, it may not be very interesting to anyone but me (and maybe my mother). So feel free to skim or ignore entirely. I do have a better blog planned for tomorrow, so tune in again next week.

Project Hedge has now had three episodes. Some how Seattle has given us three weekends in January with at least one day of no rain and no freezing temperatures. Today, in fact, it was about 55 and sunny for a while (now it's 55 and cloudy). So there have been no excuses to get me out of Project Hedge. One nice thing about this particular project is that it's really just a short sit com. I can only go until I fill up the yard waste bin and that seems to take about an hour. So it's short and intense then DONE for a week.

Here are some stats. I have trimmed 33 feet of hedge. That's length wise, it's probably 5 feet wide which is 165 square feet of hedge!!!! Holla! (That's my new trendy phrase). Much like a good reality tv show, it seems to be getting harder as I go along. The hedge is getting progressively thicker (thicker branches) as well as wider as I move along the hedge. I actually am not sure how I'm going to do the back of the house, as the hedge gets very significant back there.

More stats. I have 71 feet to go. Yes, my hedge seems to be 104 feet long. That's a lot of hedge. Averaging 11 feet per episode that's 6.5 more episodes in the series (how exciting for all of you). Maybe I'll be done by my birthday? Ooh, something to shoot for.

More fun facts. For some reason Otto, who loves to be out in the back yard during the summer, hates the back yard during the winter. He spends the entire episode standing by the back gate whining and when I let him out he goes and sits in the front of the house. Hmph. And the work I had done on my house has been very helpful in this endeavor. Matt put an outlet outside so I can plug in the 'hedgehog' (that's the name on the box kids) and go! Also, the new storage area can hold everything - hedgehog, ladder, etc - making set up a snap!

Anyhoo, that's that. Just a little 'pat myself on the back'. Time for an episode of Project Nap. Again, tune in tomorrow, I have a doozy planned.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Day 2

There was brief hope that a new me would emerge.

But instead, just another day in the life.

So the second day of the new year is upon us and it seems I'm the same pain in the butt, chocolate eating chick I was two days ago. But that's okay. I did take advantage of a minute or two of sun and trimmed a yard waste bin full of laurel hedge! So there's that. And I did buy an entire organic free roaming happy chicken that I'm going to try to cook. So there's that. I guess you just work with what you have and try to make the best of it.

Yen for zen, in 2010!

Friday, January 1, 2010


365 days later we have once again reached my very favorite day of the year. The day when you can leave all the bad negative vibes in the past and dream of how perfect everything will be.

Perhaps this year I will be happier and say goodbye to moodiness, be more patient and tolerant, more loved and loving, friendlier, more managerial at work, be a better friend, sister, daughter, maybe I will eat less chocolate and more veggies, eat only happy animals, lose 5 pounds, not watch the new season of The Bachelor, stop watching LA Ink, read more of my New Yorkers, read the books piled in my living room, organize my basement (a task planned since 2005 when I moved in), prune my entire hedge and not just a small chunk, landscape my back yard, finish the finish work in my house, paint my window sills, pay off my home equity loan, do a muscle up, run faster, learn to clean without bending my arms (the weight lifting clean not the house cleaning clean), learn to jump when I snatch heavy weight (and push jerk and clean), organize my closets and cupboards, put away my garbage can after garbage day, throw away bottles that are essentially empty rather than keeping them to use the last drop, clean my house ALL THE WAY every week, vacuum more, put up art, spend less money on crap, give more money to charity, volunteer my time, or at the very least spend less time staring at the internet doing absolutely nothing, find some new music, blog more, be more adventurous and in general just be the perfect person. Of course, most likely I will just be me!

Have a perfect 2010.

Love, Roberta, Otto and Daisy