Sunday, April 29, 2007

Marigold Gets a Bath, I Feel Bad for Her

Grandma's Green Thumb

I like to think I got it.

I pruned the big tree out front. The branches were near dragging the ground. Yes sir, yes sir, eight bags full!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Cookies Smell Like Home

Our house is finally a home! After 11 months and 5 days, I baked cookies for the first time in this house. Oh sure, I fired up the oven to cook dinner many times. I didn't feel like I had the luxury of free time, inspiration, ingredients and clean, functional kitchen until tonight. I baked Chad's favorite cookies, oatmeal chocolate chip with extra cinnamon. They smell so yummy, much better than any scented candle, and you can eat them. I don't recommend eating scented candles, too waxy, blech.

Friday, April 20, 2007

I Don't Feel Like Dancin'

When we bought our house eleven months ago, there was an odd rectangle of paver squares in the backyard. 108 square pavers to be exact. Whoever put them there must have run a few pavers short, because there were two pavers missing from one corner of the full rectangle shape. Theories about the presence of the squares ran from the practical: a foundation for a storage shed or lawn chairs; to the creepy : a marker for the buried crime evidence; to the silly: a dance floor. The name "dance floor," cleverly proposed by our friend, Merry, stuck.

Chad and I finally removed the dance floor this week. Hopefully some grass will grow, and in a few months, the dance floor will be a dim memory. Oh, and the only things we found under the dance floor were a colony of snails, some fire ants and a few tenacious dandelions; no crime evidence.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Local Spendthrift Finally Treats Himself!

Let's get that disclaimer outta the way: I love my sweet husband Chad. BUT he has this weird affliction that causes him to agonize over purchases other than groceries or sale-priced sneakers. I'm not the only one who has noticed. One of his work friends will vouch for the four-month period of hand-wringing and obsessive research that had to take place before Chad bought a laptop computer.

I should also 'fess up that I never liked Chad's Volkswagen GTI car. With its V6 engine and tiny frame, it was like a roller skate powered by a bottle rocket -- too fast, all over the place and bumpy. Last Friday when Chad told me he wanted to go to the Scion dealership to look around, I was overjoyed at the prospect of ditching that VeeDub, that we'd dubbed "the Nauseator." I tried to conceal my glee while reminding Chad to take his proof of insurance, title information and checkbook with him, just in case he might want to trade-in the reviled VW. I doubted that he could make a decision so quickly about a purchase as large as an automobile, but I'm proud of him for sealing the deal. Here are pics of his new Scion Xb! I love the smoother ride and roomy interior with easy fold-down seats.

Chad also bought a grill to complete our outdoor experience now that we have deck furniture. It took a few shopping expeditions to different vendors and lots of online research, but we have enjoyed grilled veggies and chicken several times already.

We even had some friends over for dinner last night so Chad could show off his grilling skills with veggie and chicken fajitas. Since it was Friday the 13th, and we went with a fiesta theme, I got this yummy theme cake from Russell's Bakery that said, "Buena Suerte!" which translates as "good luck." We had good luck with the weather situation. The predicted tornadoes, hail, raining frogs and lightning held off until 9:00 when we were done grillin' and chillin' al fresco.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Awww, cute; Ewww, gross!

Sonic and Kenji have these little squeaky mice that they like bat at and carry around in their mouths. Both kitties give the squeaky mice lots of kill shakes out of some hunting instinct. Kenji likes to hide the mice under bed covers or behind one of the litter boxes. Sonic likes to bring his mice up on the bed with him. I'm not sure if he's proudly showing off his prey or if he is cuddling with the squeaker.

In possibly related news, the dead body of a female rat was found under the deck today. Leading suspects are Sonic and Kenji. Both cats have been spending time outside with me lately as I pull up dandelions and water plants in the back yard. Marigold prefers to lounge on the deck or hover in the doorway. She doesn't like to get her paws dirty, so I doubt that she was the perpetrator. Whoever killed the rat, I'm so glad that the body didn't get dragged into the house to be hidden or presented to me in the bed!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Poppin' & Lockin'

I love to tell the story about my husband, Chad, taking breakdance lessons. When he lived in California, the youngsters were into this crazy dancing style that originated on "the streets." Chad's venture into breakdance had zero street credibility. His mom paid for the lessons. They lived in the suburbs. Invariably when I tell people about Chad's breakdance lessons, they ask him for a demonstration. To my great delight, he usually looks sheepish, does a shy act and begs out of performing any poppin' & lockin'. (Breakdancing involves some poppin' & lockin' of bone joints and muscles for moves like the wave, the worm, moonwalking, etc...) One time at a wedding reception, Chad actually obliged and showed off some of his moves. Sadly, I must report that Chad's mom wasted her money on those breakdance lessons. One of the other guys at the wedding reception had a lonely childhood spent studying Michael Jackson videos and memorizing ALL of the choreography. He recreated several of Michael Jackson's dance routines with alarming and amusing accuracy! Thus putting Chad's so-called breakdance skills to shame.

Today after my yoga class, the lady behind me commented that she heard some poppin' from me during class. It was NOT the usual popping of chewing gum (bad habit of mine), but rather my knee joints popping and my leg bones popping in my hip sockets. The lady behind me was my mom's age and a little more limber than I'll ever be. Sigh. A few weeks ago in yoga class, I got a bad cramp in my glutes (butt muscles.) I got stuck in this hard yoga pose with my bootie-muscle-cramp, like physically locked into it. My poppin' & lockin' aren't very impressive either. Chad & I are well matched.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

A Few of my Favorite Things

Chad & I did some minor yard work this weekend, which is not exciting. UPS delivered our deck furniture from Target's Smith & Hawken collection. This is kind of exciting, because we can better enjoy our deck, especially now that the weather is nice.

I'm in a count-my-blessings mood. The following is a list of some of my favorite things. You'll notice lots of food related items on the list, because I've been dieting, and because I'm kinda hungry.

Favorite dessert: S'mores
Favorite drink: Republic of Tea's Ginger Peach Tea
Favorite sushi restaurant: Uchi
Favorite comfort food restaurant: Hyde Park Bar & Grill
Favorite pizza: Home Slice
Favorite Tex-Mex food: Guero's - the senorita plato
Favorite clothing brand: Lucky Brand
Favorite stores to linger in: It's a tie between Book People & Love on S. 1st St.
Favorite shopping website:
Favorite movie: Spirited Away
Favorite TV series: It's a tie between Veronica Mars on the CW and the BBC production, Midsomer Murders. (I like mysteries.)
Favorite book: The Hundred Secret Senses by my favorite author, Amy Tan
Favorite band: Nada Surf -- I got to see them play last year at Emo's. They were great live!
Favorite city to visit: Seattle
Favorite leisure activity: It's a tie between reading magazines in bed and going to yoga.
Favorite stylist: Monica at Maximum FX
Favorite cat: Who can choose?!