Friday, November 16, 2007

Live Long and Prosper

I have a confession to make. It’s a confession of a very personal nature that I can only reveal under the semi-anonymity of the net. This is big and y’all are getting it exclusively, because I could never say these words out loud. Are you ready? Here it is. I may be a little bit of a Trekkie. There, now its out there and it’s on the web so it must be true. Oh sure, I’ll still deny it if you ask me, but now you know that it’s lurking under the surface of this cool and hip facade that I put on.

Being a Trekkie is pretty hard to come to grips with. You ask yourself, how did this happen? Was I born like this? Should I seek counseling? But in the end, you realize that you’re merely playing out an alternate timeline brought on by a rip in the space-time continuum and you should really stop focusing on a t.v. show and get yourself back to your starship orbiting the planet, marry the captain, move to the Ferenginar and start a stamping business from your home….and live happily ever after.

Ok, I’m not that kind of Trekkie. I don’t speak Klingon and I don’t know in which episode Captain Janeway first battled the Borg in the Delta Quadrant. In fact, “Trekkie” may be too harsh. Afterall, its not as if I ever had a secret fantasy of teaching Spock to love and then mating with him on the bridge during the night shift…really, no secret fantasies here. I also have no desire to ever visit a Star Trek convention (well, no desire that I’m willing to admit anyway). No, I wouldn’t really say that I’m a “Trekkie” at all…nothing more than a slightly obsessive fan, really. But my co-workers continue to speculate and whisper….something about that photo on my cube wall with my phase super-imposed into a photo of The Next Generation crew. That doesn’t prove anything. It’s like I explained to them, I was in Vegas, the opportunity was there and it only cost me $29.95 for an 8x10 glossy photo….would any sane person pass that up?

OK, so we’ve established that I am mildly interested in this television series called Star Trek. But I’m not the only one still watching re-runs all day on Saturday in my pajamas. What is it about this show that has mesmerized so many people from so many different walks of life? It must be more than the mediocre acting and off-the-wall plot lines to make people risk being lumped into the nerdy typecast associated with the show. Personally, I enjoy the subtle humor and references to current events (or events that were current at the time). Mostly, I think these series has kept its loyal viewers by creating several very cohesive series intertwined by common events. Everything from planet names to the actual invention of the Klingon language is used consistently throughout all the series. The success of the show has depended on keeping its fans intrigued with hidden tidbits and innuendo while ensuring that each storyline is independent enough to allow new-comers or channel flippers to easily follow the plot. I can’t think of another show that has mastered the technique of spin-off so well.

I’m happy to say that with the invention of TiVo (God bless that guy!), we now have the next generation (pun intended) of the Star Trek fan in our home. It occurred to me after seeing an old episode about a year ago that my sci-fi inspired CT would absolutely love the show. Luckily, there is always a Trek on somewhere on the satellite channels, so we now have a collection of recorded episodes that could make a Vulcan envious (if they could feel such an emotion, that is). I was right and CT has been assimilated….well, at least when not in public. He did venture out of our mutual turbolift of denial long enough to dress as a Starfleet Lt. Cmdr. for Halloween. He was more terrified that the kids at school would make fun of him that he was afraid of the teenager in the hockey mask at our door. Shame on our generation for perpetuating the stereotype and passing it down to our children! Fortunately, most of his friends have not been blessed with such caring and open-minded parents and had no idea what Starfleet was. Instead of justifying his unusual costume, CT spent the evening explaining “I do have a costume. I’m a military person on a spaceship.” And even some of the adults looked him oddly, when he thanked them for his treats with “Live long and prosper”…..but that could have been because one of his Vulcan ears went missing half-way through the night and he was walking around with only one pointy ear.

He’s a cute little Lt. Cmdr.


I know the resemblance is uncanny, but I swear I ‘ve never even been on a Starship (wink, wink).

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Feeling a bit weak, insignificant, unimportant? Boy, have I got a cure for you!

I started my new position at work about six months ago. Changing positions within a company can be intimidating all by itself. Add to it the uncertainty of a totally new career path and completely foreign job requirements, and you've got yourself one stressful situation. I'm not used to being the inept one and I'm definitely not enjoying my role as new girl. Learning to work with the same people in a different role is no picnic either. Needless to say, this new job has been humbling experience to date. I've learned quite a bit, but I'm still having trouble asserting myself in the unfamiliar waters of the marketing department. I know, pretty hard to picture me cowering in my cube in fear of speaking up, huh? But that's how I feel sometimes...a lack of confidence that is utterly new to me.

I've recently discovered a little cure for my feelings of inadequacy at work, though. It's based on a little thing I like to call "Power Accessories". Now, I'm no fashion diva by any means. When I started this new position, I had to buy a whole new wardrobe because my jeans and sweatshirt were no longer acceptable attire. I've grown accustomed to ironing every day and carrying a lint brush in my purse. I don't particularly enjoy these rituals, but they are becoming a part of my everyday life. Oh sure, I felt the air of importance when I was issued my company credit card, cell phone and laptop (with case...only really important people get a case, y'all...ok, everyone gets a case, but it made me feel distinguished carrying around my "briefcase"). But the newness quickly wore off when I realized I was just lugging around a whole lot more crap and that my back and shoulders were paying for my new status symbols. But then, just when I thought there was no hope and that I was destined to be the meek village idiot of the marketing department, autumn came along. Beautiful, colorful, cool fall in all its glory reached Minnesota and I found the answer to my sudden case of insecurity. Boots....yep a wonderful, perfect, powerful pair of boots. Not just any boots either. These boots are faux snakeskin with heels that could easily take down a moose if tossed from a distance close enough. They are tall, sleek, pointy-toed wonders of this modern world. That click-clack sound on the the hallway floor gives me the courage I need to make decisions, call meetings and lead teams....all while ready to kick butt at any moment. They make me stand taller, walk faster and demand respect. My new pair of boots aren't just a fashion statement. They are a reincarnation of the self-confident assurance that I used to possess. Oh, I'm sure I'll be able to command the same adoration and esteem in a pair of sandals someday, but for now my boots have given me back the self-reliant spirit that helped get me this job. And I love them for it.


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October Stamp Club






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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

"It isn't necessary to have relatives in Kansas City in order to be unhappy."
-Groucho Marx


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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Unusual Objects Stuck to KellyFaith's Head

I know I've been lax in my blogging these days, but I've been busy...school starting, job, family, blah, blah, blah. However, I have been collecting stories to delight and entertain all my fans (all three of y'all - BFF!) Anyway, I will start what I expect will be a reoccurring theme on the blogosphere that I like to call "Unusual Objects Stuck to KellyFaith's Head". Folks, it's not Pulitzer material, but it's my life (sad as that may be). Enjoy.

It all started a couple of weeks ago as I was closing a weekly meeting with BL (Boss Lady) in a conference room. As usual, I brought my laptop and plugged into the frontage road (that's my way of saying my company's intranet...not quite a superhighway, but it occasionally leads to something useful). Anyway, I had my laptop plugged into a phone cord coming from the wall of the conference room. After the meeting, I was chatting with BL as I collected my belongings. I was feeling particularly alert that morning, so I managed to remember to unplug the computer before picking it up to leave (it only took 3 times of being yanked back like a disobedient puppy by the cord still securely plugged to the wall to learn this trick). So, I was on top of my game and feeling pretty pleased with myself...for a split second anyway. By some mystical force, yet to be named by all of mankind, that little plug on the end of the cord ended up tangled in my hair. I have no recollection of trying to plug my computer into my ear or raising the plug to my head in any way...but it was stuck there nonetheless. I stood there for a few seconds snugly tethered to the conference room wall. BL gave me a funny look, but did not say anything (bless her heart). Then, in a Crouching Tiger quick move, I ripped the cord from my hair...taking a large clump of hair with it. I looked at it for a moment, then casually removed the hair from the plug and tossed it in the trash bin. By this time, BL was barely containing her giggles. It was then that I noticed the slight pain. I raised my hand to touch the sore spot only to find a small trickle of blood coming from a bare patch on my noggin. Yes, I practically scalped myself with a computer cord. I assure you it's only a slight exaggeration and it was just as humiliating as the time I cut my own bangs in elementary school. Only this time, the woman who holds the financial future of my little family in her hands was overcome with laughter and probably considering taking away my stapler.

I'm sure I managed to accomplish some work that day, but I don't remember it. The day is forever burned into my "Embarrassing Moments" file in my memory. At this rate, I may require a few extra GB of space to allow for the never ending barrage of mortification that makes up my day-to-day activities.


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Friday, September 14, 2007

New Baby Sweater

I finally finished knitting the baby sweater I've been working on for months. Thank goodness because the baby is due in the next week! I think I re-knitted this thing a dozen times to get it right. It still has a few issued. The first problem is that I knitted the newborn size (seemed appropriate for a newborn baby, right?). However, it seems extremely small. Baby may only be able to wear it for about 4 days, if at all. Maybe I've just forgotten how small newborns though. The second problem is that I seem to have gotten 2 different dye lots of yarn. It's my own fault for not checking, but I did buy it at the same place at the same time. Anyway, the back has a spot that looks like it's been faded. I don't think it's too noticeable and it is on the back. Other than those two things, the sweater is perfect though. I tried knitting booties to match, but the weight of yarn is too big and the first bootie came out big enough for CT to wear! In fact, I'm threatening to make him a very special pair for Christmas. So, I gave up on that idea. Besides, another friend of mine is sewing a jumper to match so we can give it to the proud parents together.

Well, without further ado, I give you Baby Sweater a la Kelly:


Front

These photos don't do the color justice. It's a bright yellow with lime green trim. As you may have noticed, I don't like traditional baby colors.


Back


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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

August Stamp Club Projects

These little 3x3 cards seem to be all the craze right now. Can't mail them through regular mail, though.

Also, Mom's birthday present...complete with mix CD of CT's favorite songs.






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Monday, August 20, 2007

Soggy Mini Donuts

Yesterday, two of my sisters-in-laws and I took CT and EB to Valleyfair (a local amusement park). The boys had never been before, which is a shame for any 10-year-old who lives less than a mile from the park and is forced to drive by it every day. So, since the summer is waning and school is just around the corner, we decided that we really needed to rectify this injustice. Of course, we picked the only late August day that behaves like a November morning....rainy and cold. It was a light rain/mist in the morning, so we decided that this would be ideal. Under these conditions, not many people would venture out to the park and the boys would be able to ride any of the most popular rides without waiting in line. However by mid-afternoon we deluged with downpours that would impress Noah himself. We took shelter by going to a couple of shows, but in the end none of us could escape the inevitability of uncomfortable, drenched undergarments.

I think the boys didn't really mind too much. We still managed to make the best of things. As for me, I learned a lot about my two sisters-in-law. For instance, PKBS giggles uncontrollably on every ride.....every Tilt-A-Whirl or Monstrous Roller Coaster of Death sends her to into fits. It's really quite interesting. On the complete opposite end EBM (Energizer Bunny's Mom) screams curses on the scary rides....also quite interesting. Meanwhile, I confirmed what I already knew about EB and CT. EB is no afraid of anything. We spent a good 20 or 30 minutes talking him out of riding a big, scary ride that none of us adults were willing to ride with him. He really, really would have gone on the thing all alone if we'd let him...even after we described the potential brain damage that this would surely cause. CT is forver his little cousin's protector. He frequently took EB's hand to lead him when he started to wander. CT is quite a philosopher and constantly passes down his infinite wisdom to EB. For instance, the boys were quite interested in one of the games where the carnie was supposed to guess your age, weight or birth month. I pointed out to CT that the sign read "within 2 years" and "within 10 pounds", etc. making it nearly impossible for the carnie to lose when playing with kids. Over lunch CT repeated my advice to EB saying "If my mom did it, she would win. She's so short that he'd think she was 14. [sweet kid] Especially now that she got her hair died. Otherwise he'd guess she was 49 and she'd still win anyway" [devil child]. EB was also enlightened when he began telling CT that he didn't like spinning rides because it gave him a headache and that he didn't like roller coasters because the up and down made his tummy ache. To this, CT responded "Life's full of ups and downs and spins arounds. So just deal with it." I know, sounds like a motivational coffee mug, huh?

I have to say I was more than a little disappointed in the fine cuisine at Valleyfair. My favorite part about going to an amusement park or fair is the food. I fasted for days in preparation for last year's visit to the state fair. I admit that the deep-fried candy bar made it worthwhile. I am always prepared for the exorbitant prices of fair food and complain abundantly about it. But I am a sucker for food on a stick, so I relent and buy everything anyway. Valleyfair's food was cold and tasteless in the cold rain. And there is no travesty worse than soggy mini donuts, y'all. I actually went home hungry, which is quite unusual I assure you.

I hope CT and EB were able to enjoy their day out with their aunts. I'm almost certain that they are relieved to have finally visited this icon of fun in their own backyard. Hopefully, they've had enough and the begging will cease for a while....at least until next summer.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.
-Voltaire


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Monday, July 30, 2007

Dream Big! Stampin' Up! Convention 2007

So, I've made it back from Denver and before I head off for my next adventure (family reunion at Itasca this week) I thought I'd fill y'all in on this year's convention.

PK and I made it a little vacation for just the two of us. In fact, we put about 900 miles on our rental car in one week! We had a great time together, but I'll talk more about that in a later post. This post is about convention. Being an SU! demonstrator is not just about getting a discount. I've made so many great friends through this little business of mine (even if I haven't made a single cent!). Convention always invigorates and excites me about crafting. It's something I need every year to spark my creativity and imagination. These women are so kind, generous and inspiring people (and great artists too!). I can't help but be happy in the presence of so many of them.

So, here are some photos to help tell my convention story for 2007. Enjoy!

Convention Swaps
Every year we demonstrators spend weeks frantically stamping cards to swap with eachother at convention. we use them as displays for customers, to spark ideas and to inspire eachother. It's definitely a highlight of every convention. This year I managed to make and swap about 200 cards. Here are the designs I made to swap with my fellow demonstrators. I promise these photos don't do them justice.












Me at convention



Convention Art Displays
Throughout the convention center, SU! always posts artwork they've received throughout the year for us to take photos of for inspiration and ideas. I can only imagine how many samples they get. For the first time this year, I found one of my very own creations on the display boards....and not just one...TWO! You can imagine how excited I was!







Convention Make-N-Takes

Another highlight of convention is the make-n-takes we get to make with all the brand new products.












Sunday, July 22, 2007

I Am the Greatest Mom Ever

Friday night, kids and their parents all over the world lined up to get their hands on a book....a book...not the latest, greatest video game or toy....a 736 page book. CT and I made our way to the local bookstore where he's been on the waiting list since last December. It was a madhouse. Kids, teenagers, adults and one helper dog all crowded in the bookstore aisles. Silly costumes next to tattooed teens next to grandmothers. It was crazy. It was beautiful. As the hours slipped, I started to feel my own excitement grow. I haven't read any of Harry Potter books nor have I had any desire to. Yet here I was packed in between the biographies and the Bibles with 2 Harry Potters, a Dumbeldorf, a Malfoy and my own redhead about to come unglued as the minutes approached midnight. I felt a little camaraderie with these literary mavens all glued to their watches. At 11:00 the store calmed a bit and the noise level decreased to a quiet buzz. I quickly realized that this wasn't just about one book. This was mass imagination....all America caught up in one make-believe place and time far, far away. It was about getting us all to read again...to enjoy time with ourselves and our own thoughts and dreams. And it was working. As I looked around the patient and inpatient alike were each immersed in the pages ripped off the shelves around us. Kids reading about Abraham Lincoln...a dad smiling as he flipped Dr. Seuss....a teenager eagerly paging through a book about the Iraq war...and a little boy clutching a pop-up book as he slept under a table. It wasn't about ONE book. This single purpose had brought us all to the place with nothing to do, but read. It was inspiring. One fictional little boy managed to get us all to do what countless libraries couldn't....even if only for one night.

When the countdown to midnight began, the books landed back on their shelves and everyone counted aloud together...some shouting with way too much enthusiasm for the time of night. When the first book was finally sold, a cheer went up and we all settled into wait for our very own turn to pay our money and hold that book in our hands. Kids all around me begged their parents to stay up all night to read....how do you say "no" to that?

Hours continued to tick by and the crowd began to thin out. The cheers had stopped and now each person sleepily stepped to the register, paid and quietly left the store. Finally at 2:30 CT and were the next in line. I looked down at him as he anticipated this event he'd been waiting so long for. "I've been waiting since December, Mom, and now I get it," he said as he stepped up to the counter. He took the book out of the bag and hugged it tight to his chest. Then he stood up on a nearby chair and yelled as loud as he could, "I got it!" to the now meager crowd. Those of us who were left responded with a quiet cheer and CT beamed like he had received a standing ovation. He waved goodbye as we made our way out the door to our car.

So, bring on the overpriced book. Bring on the movies and the expensive memorabilia. Bring on the spoilers. Bring on the fanatics in their costumes. Bring on the mania and the hysteria, Harry Potter. I can stay up all night for days waiting in a hot stuffy bookstore. I can take the whining. I can take the waiting. I can take the sore feet and the overflowing restrooms. I can take it all....just as long as that kid keeps smiling like that.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Kelly's No-Good, Really Bad Morning

Wednesday Morning:

  • 6:20 a.m. - Woke up 15 minutes late
  • 6:40 a.m. - Rushed around to get CT ready to go to day camp
  • 6:55 a.m. - Rushed so much that when I arrived at day camp, I was too early and it wasn't open yet
  • 7:02 a.m. - Realized that my shoes already hurt my feet
  • 7:20 a.m. - Realized that I forgot to make a promised call to a friend about feeding the devil cat while I'm on vacation next week
  • 7:35 a.m. - Arrived late to work despite being early to drop CT off....there must be a rupture somewhere in the space-time continuum, because I don't think this is even possible
  • 7:45 a.m. - Realized that in my rush that I forgot to brush my hair this morning....serious bed-head
  • 7:50 a.m. - Explained hair situation to boss....she has no solution and won't let me go home
  • 8:00 a.m. - Realized that I am out of Diet Coke at work and I have to shell out a whole $1.25 to get one from the machine
  • 8:01 a.m. - Found $1 for Diet Coke, but can't find a stupid quarter anywhere
  • 8:05 a.m. - Went to get change from front desk for Diet Coke, but receptionist is late this morning
  • 8:15 a.m. - Rushed to meeting (Diet Coke in hand...finally!) with boss at a co-workers cubicle just about 10 cubes and a couple of rows over from my cube
  • 8:40 a.m. - Walked away from meeting with boss trailing behind me, but discovered that I'm lost and cry out "Where am I?" to which the surrounding 10 cubicles erupt in a fit of laughter and my boss responds "Kelly, you are on a planet earth. It's real nice and you might consider staying awhile." I would prefer not to stick around, thank you very much.

And it's not even 9:00 yet.

Ok, so it's not an awful day yet. My car is still running and I rolled the windows up before the rain started. But my brain is so busy these days that every little road block just exasperates me. It's going to be a long day.



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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

I'm an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way.

-Carl Sandberg



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Friday, June 29, 2007

CT's Big, Exciting Week

I've discovered this week that our little CT is one lucky little boy. Mom flew in for a visit on Saturday, so he's been spoiled rotten. We're talking all his favorite foods, new clothes, homemade breakfasts and patience beyond belief. Most weeks the best he can hope for is frozen pizza, tennis shoes with sole separation issues (that kid can walk through shoes!), cold cereal (sometimes with no milk) and constant reprimanding. I do realize that I just made myself out to be a horrible mother, but before you call social services, just note that I do often exaggerate and no mother can compete with the superhero that is Nana. I don't get it. She takes naps and cooks vegetables every day and he still loves her better....not that it's a competition. Well, who could blame him, she is pretty awesome. I mean, look how I turned out. I should note here that I was also fed heartily, received new clothes and managed to snag a few hot breakfasts before work despite the early hour. See, told ya she was a superhero.

CT started Twins baseball camp this week. I was a little concerned that he would feel inadequate since all the other kids most likely played in a league. But he seemed to take it fairly well and came home exhausted every afternoon. The highlight of the camp was he got to meet Rod Carew and Tony Oliva. They even signed some autographs for him. He also received a camp t-shirt, Twins hat, tickets to any game and was interviewed for a newspaper article. While it was by no means cheap, I was really impressed with the instruction he received and he seemed in awe of the whole thing.

On Monday night, Nana and I got up some nerve and went downtown to take CT to his very first rock concert. Actually, I was the only one who was nervous. Super Nana was just along for the party. Anyway, we went to see Bowling for Soup at the Fine Line downtown. I actually love Bowling for Soup and have all their albums, but I was nervous that I might be a bad parent for taking my kid to see a band that curses and tends to talk about sex a little too much. I knew it was an "all ages" show, but I wasn't sure it would really be appropriate for a 10-year-old. Despite a few F-words flung around, the concert was great and CT had a blast. He was rocking out with the crown and singing along with the band. It was definitely a great memory-maker for him. For the record, I wasn't the only one who brought a kid to a punk band concert. So, I may be a bad mother, but I'm not a bad mother alone!


The best part of the week for me was last night. PK and Mom get along fine now, but it hasn't always been that way. I think they've just come to a sort of understanding and can now tolerate small doses of eachother. Last night we all went out to dinner together....still well within the bounds of their strained, yet polite, relationship. After dinner we got into the car to go home....well, some of us did. PK is so used to hearing 3 doors shut and then taking off that he prematurely gunned the gas while Mom still had one foot on the pavement. Yes, he dragged his mother-in-law 3 or 4 feet before he managed to slam on the breaks! OK, I don't enjoy seeing my mother get injured and I was relieved to know that she was just a little sore and was not bleeding. However, the awkward silence int he car and the clumsy apologies from my very Norwegian hubby made me laugh so hard, I nearly peed my pants. For a good 15 minutes the car was quiet except for an occasional nervous laugh and a mumbled "I'm sorry" every once in awhile. Now, I'm sure that both parties know PK did not intentionally run over his mother-in-law. Still, there was the quiet undertone of suspicion throughout the rest of the evening. PK was wondering if she was going to hold this against him for the rest of his life and Mom was wondering if there wasn't some subliminal murderous tendency toward her. It was frickin' hilarious, y'all.


So, CT and Super Nana left this morning. I have 2 weeks with no child and no responsibility....Oh, wait I do still have PK at home to worry about....and that hateful shrew of a cat. So, I guess it won't be much different afterall. Still, I'll miss the little freckle face.


Here's the cat plotting to overthrow the household while we're one man down. She's not cute and cuddly.
She's angry, bitter and she's not gonna take it anymore!



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Monday, June 18, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

"It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not to deserve them. "
-Mark Twain


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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

It's Your Fault I'm Sick!

Thursday night PK and I watched a very interesting special on t.v. regarding the black plague that struck Europe in the 17th century. It was all about discovering why some people survived even though they were repeatedly exposed to the disease.

On Friday, I got to work to immediately was struck by a 45-minute sneezing fit (not really that unusual by itself. I am a naturally sneezy person). By Friday afternoon my eyes were tired and weepy. When I mentioned to PK that evening that I wasn't feeling well, he responded "You do not have the plague!" OK, I fully acknowledge that there have been times that my health has been overly influenced by the mere suggestion of infection. However, I have never mistaken a seasonal allergy attack for the plague. So, in deference to his intimate knowledge of my past mysterious medical conditions and the likeliness that he may have correctly assumed that I was just exhibiting symptoms I had just seen on t.v., I did not immediately snap his arm off and beat his head with it when he made such a idiotic, snide comment to an obviously stricken woman. Instead I simply offered that perhaps it would not be wise for me to help mow the church lawn on the following Saturday given my recent allergic reactions. PK blew into a tirade about how I'm always sick and I never help....blah, blah, blah. Of course he never conceded that mowing the church lawn is his commitment and that I always do a majority of it because it so happens that I like to mow. Some are called to preach and others are called to mow. I happen to be one of the latter. Finally, his rant concluded with the notion that if we both mowed together we'd get done in half the time and he'd still have plenty of time to work on the deck. Now, how can any wife longing for a drawn-out project to finally come to completion argue with that?

So, PK woke me up at 7:30 on a Saturday to go with him to mow. The church is quite large and usually takes one person about 8 hours to mow (including an hour off for lunch). Immediately upon arriving at the church, PK discovered that a tire had gone flat (ok, he noticed it on Friday night and actually went to the store to buy a new tire, but then didn't fix it because he "thought the old one would hold out"). So I began mowing while he worked to change the tire. About 6 hours later, PK finally finished fixing the tire and mowed small square the size of a postage stamp before calling it quits and allowing me to finish the job while he put his mower on the truck. By the time I got off my mower, my hair was more grass than hair, tears were streaming down my face and snot literally pouring out of my nostrils (not a pretty picture, huh?). He took one look at me and said "uh-oh".

Uh-oh is right, y'all. I was downright, full-on sick. I remained in my snotty state until this morning when I awoke feeling a little more human. Needless to say it was a really, really crappy weekend and I had to take a sick day on Monday. Not only that, since we spent the whole day at the church, PK got absolutely no work done on the deck at all despite my "helping". So my agony is all for nought. Oh sure the church lawn is immaculate, but at what cost? Several boxes of tissues and a package of Benadryl later....and I still have no deck on which to lounge my sickly body. I only tell you this sad story so that you will not also succumb to this trickery. It may not be the black plague, but this curse of an inconsiderate husband ravages many.

And, yes, PK, it is YOUR FAULT that I am sick! You can't see it, but I'm sticking my tongue out at you!

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Monday, June 04, 2007

25 Miles?...No Sweat

OK, there was sweat. A lot of really stinky sweat in addition to a lot of whining and even a few tears. But I made it. I rode 25 miles on my bike. Together, PK and I raised about $350 for the Tour de Cure. I climbed mountains (I scoff at those who call them hills) and dodged downtown traffic to finish the event in 2 hours 40 minutes. Every time I thought I wouldn't make it (and there were quite a few of those times), I just thought of Mom. I said to myself, "Self, if Mom can stick herself a dozen times a day for 20 years just to survive, then you can make it a few more miles." And I did.... I made it 24 more miles, to be exact.



Yes, I'm a bit saddle sore and my muscles are achy, but I did it and I didn't think I could. I thank you all for your support and prayers. Now, for anyone who is interested, I have a nice rarely used bike for sale. I believe I've hung up my helmet for good this time. OK, maybe I should wait just few days before I discard my trusty steed. I mean we have been through a lot together....well, at least a little anyway. It's just that when I see it sitting there in the garage all peaceful and relaxed against the lawn mower, I want to kick it....hard and maybe hurl a few things at it. It's not the bike I detest....I think it's exercise as a whole that really irks me. I'm one of those people who really, really hates physical activity. I thought I good cause would make it more interesting for me...and it did. But now that it's over, I'm back to loathing that hell on two wheels more than ever. I think I'm one of those people who hates doing things that I have to do. Perhaps if exercise wasn't good for me or if I didn't have to do it in order to remain below 300 pounds, I would actually enjoy a nice run through the park...or a good aerobics video. But alas the couch potato is a dieing breed (literally) and I must exercise if only for self-preservation. So my bike sits there waiting for me to hop on again....or to kick it, whichever comes first. I think I'll give myself a week or two off....maybe join the ping pong league at work (that's exercise, right?).






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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

There Is No Prescription for Procrastination

Deck frustration...or maybe it's more like husband frustration is slowly creeping up on my otherwise sunny mood these days. Now that PK can step outside our sliding glass door without falling to his doom, he seems to have stalled out. Meanwhile, we have no railings and no stairs and NO PROGRESS! I can't blame him for being tired of the whole thing, but I am seeing the symptoms of the stretch-a-project-out-for months-or-years-so-nothing-ever-is-truly-DONE virus and I am not very happy. Unfortunately, this illness is extremely contagious and leads to prematurely moving on to other projects only to find that the virus has spread to them as well. The result is a perpetually incomplete home improvement nightmare and a very cranky wife. So far, all of my attempts at motivation have been fruitless. I fear my only recourse is to schedule the final inspection so that PK has a deadline that must be reached. Deadlines are frequently ignored in my home though, so I'm not very hopeful. Perhaps it is too late for Project Deck and I should focus on saving Project Refinished Floors or Project Black Top Driveway....now that I think about it Project Lawn Care has been neglected in favor of "deck-related" activities (the quotes mean that I am not buying this excuse). No cure has yet been found for a hubby's unwillingness to complete any home improvement project, but a margarita does wonders for the wives coping with the symptoms. I, however, will have to resort to drinking while sitting in a lawn chair on the front step, since I have no deck on which to lounge.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Pepperoni or Sausage?

Check out this really cool photo a friend of mine took in his yard in Minneapolis.





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Monday, May 21, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

We are always more anxious to be distinguished for a talent which we do not possess, than to be praised for the fifteen which we do possess.
-Mark Twain


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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

No crafts, no photos, no link...just a boring blog update

Well, I've started my new position at work yesterday. It's a little like being in a foreign country and not knowing what's going on around you. With all the foreign languages I've worked with over the past 6 years, I'm still having a lot of trouble with Marketing dialect. I guess that will come with time. The job has been a little boring so far. Like every time you start a new job, no one has assigned me work yet. The bright side is that I have time to update y'all on my blog! PK did manage to get himself a sizable raise this week and, as he so kindly pointed out, he makes more than me, once again.....not that it's a competition or anything.

We began building our deck this weekend with the help of all PK's family. I'll spare you the long list of injuries incurred. Rest assured that our insurance premiums did rise dramatically as there were no trips to the emergency room. That makes the weekend a success in my opinion. The deck is not complete, however, and there's still plenty of time for stitches and x-rays to become a necessity. We did manage to complete about 3/4 of the work (saving the most difficult 1/4 for PK do manage on his own...obviously, I was not involved in the planning). Anyway, while the men worked the women went shopping (we also prepared meals, so the rumors of our laziness are greatly exaggerated.....ok, we ordered pizza and headed to the mall, but I really, really needed new clothes for the new job, right?).

Since PK's family was visiting, got to spend a lot of time with my new little niece. She's 4 months old now and is such a good baby. She is smiling and happy a majority of the time and I'm pretty certain I'm her favorite aunt (that's short a as in "ant". All the other sisters-in-law are "onts"). Also due to the family visit and the deck marathon, PK "forgot" to acknowledge Mother's Day (I did make sure he hugged his own mother and CT and I prepared a gift for her). Anyway, I was a little irritated by his lack of appreciation for the mother of his child. He kept saying "You got a deck". I'm sorry, but that's not a really a fair defense. We would have gotten the deck anyway. Not that I wanted a gift or anything....just a card would have been thoughtful. It took him several hours before he finally even said "Happy Mother's Day" and only then because I reminded him. For his part, CT presented me with a lovely hand-painted pot with a cute little flower along with a very sweet card he made himself at school (I should have taken a photo to post, but I haven't yet). Luckily, he didn't learn his chivalry from his father. PK has managed to redeem himself. This morning in my car, I found a beautiful lucky bamboo plant for my new desk. It was a very sweet peace offering, so he's out of the proverbial dog house for now.

Tonight we meet with the beginning band instructors because CT has decided to play the trumpet in the school band next year. I'm a little worried about his commitment level. He tends to give up on things that do not come easily to him. To be honest, he talent also leads me to believe that this is a short-lived activity. He was just awful at the recorder and constantly received bad grades in music because of his "squeaking". He didn't feel motivated to practice very much either. After several motherly lectures on the importance of responsibility and the amount of practice time required for this endeavor, CT still insists that the trumpet is for him. I'm never one to stand in the way of the arts, so we've agreed to at least meet with the band instructors.

Well, as you can see I've had very little times for crafty pursuits, but I do need to get started this weekend on swaps needed for the Stampin' Up! convention in July. I'll have to squeeze it in between staining the remaining deck pieces.

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Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

I'm moving, but don't worry! Someone once told me we're all on the same planet, so I'll be okay!
- Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka and Toshihiro Kawabata
Animal Crossing: Wild World


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Friday, May 04, 2007

Fuming

They're re-tarring the roof at my office this week. The fumes are seeping through the ventilation and making us all high...not exactly a sound business practice. It wouldn't be so bad except that we also happen to be staining the pieces of our new deck at home so my whole house has an eerily similar scent. I'm pretty sure I'm losing brain cells by the second. As you all know I have precious few to spare.

I've been so busy with deck, new job preparations, Mother's Day planning that I haven't gotten to do any stamping, scrapping or knitting at all. I'm kinda going into crafter's withdrawal. I did get a big box of brand new stamping supplies yesterday and I'm anxious to try some new techniques out. But I don't really see that happening anytime soon with my schedule the way it is these days. I need to re-knit the baby sweater I've been working on too. I noticed that when I joined the second ball of yarn that it was a slightly different dye lot and is a noticeably different texture. I'm going to have to get some new yarn....hopefully that matches.

Well, you've witnessed the loss of another few hundred brain cells. By tomorrow, I'll barely be able sit upright and drool on the keyboard!

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Blog Drought

So, I've been neglecting my blog a little bit. I have so much going on right now that I'm emotionally drained at the end of every day. I just don't have anything else to give. I feel like my brain is running around in circles trying to remember everything, do everything and be everything. Too bad my body can't keep up with my brain's fitness program! Anyway, lately I've just been so worn out that I don't have the energy for sarcasm and dry wit. Thus, the blog suffers.

Things on KellyFaith's mind that makes her tired and boring:
  • New deck - purchased with tax refunds and being built by PK (with a little help from the rest of the family).
  • Constantly scheduling time to work on the deck, inspections, helpers, etc. Desperately trying to stay on schedule to the complete irritation of PK. I just don't want this to be another project that lasts months or even years (Note: remind me tell the bathroom story)
  • Already planning a deck-warming party....but better plan the less-glamorous Deck-Build-A-Thon planned for all of our friends and family planned for Mother's Day weekend.
  • School's almost out and the last day of daycare is imminent. I have CT's entire summer full of amps and vacations, but still nothing for the first 2 weeks after school is out. There seems to be nothing available. We may have to fall back on the emergency daycare, but are limited to only 13 days per year.
  • I have been interviewing and have finally gotten a new position at work....big promotion. I'm ecstatic about the success, but doubting my abilities. Going from a position where I am generally considered the expert to a position where I'm starting all over is a little stressful.
  • The new job has a lot more responsibility and more hours...am I up tot he challenge?
  • The new boss's boss has a mean grudge against denim and capris and the whole notion of casual Friday. I have nothing to wear. I've been shopping non-stop since I found out about the position and I still have nothing to wear (says the lady with an overflowing closet). But really, I have nothing to wear.
  • Dress shoes worn with work clothes hurt....a lot. Four new pairs of shoes and every one of them is a torture device of epic proportion.
  • They don't make pants for fat, petite girls with no waist.
  • My co-workers seem happy for me, but are they really? Which ones of them also applied for the new position?
  • I hate keeping secrets. I'm so relieved to finally be able to tell my boss and co-workers about this job. 8 interviews in 2 weeks is really hard to cover for.
  • DPG (Dominant Personality Guy) acted weird through the whole interview. He asked me if I planned to apply and when I told him yes he encouraged me and asked for daily updates on the interview process. Yet, rumor has it, he also applied. Why would he goat me into telling him all about the painful interview process and never mention that he was going through the same process? Maybe the rumors aren't true. I think it's pretty sneaky if they are. Doesn't really matter, I suppose.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them.
-Bill Vaughan


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Friday, April 20, 2007

Cable-Knit Baby Sweater

I finally finished the baby sweater I was knitting for SHAO's newest addition! Geez, I think the kid is already like 3 months old...practically in college. Just in time too, I'm going to see SHAO tomorrow so I can give it to her then. So, it's a late baby shower gift, but I my excuse is the enormous amount of time it took me to get the pattern right. More time = better gift, so I think she'll overlook my faux pas. I even unknit it a couple of times (once because I had to make it bigger when I realized the baby was going to be older by the time I finished it!).

I'm pretty happy with the results. I think it turned out like it was supposed to anyway. I'm a little concerned about the length of the sleeves, but it's hard to know without a baby to try it on. I think it's supposed to be a drop-shoulder sweater and, in that case, the sleeves should be the perfect length. I checked and double-checked the pattern and I'm pretty confident that I knitted them correctly. This week, KB (Knitting Buddy) came over and helped sew everything together so I could get it done by this weekend. She also thinks it's correct, so I'm trying to worry about it. Luckily, I managed to pick up some new buttons for the shoulder last night and I sewed them on quickly this morning during my coffee break (I don't drink coffee, anyway). PK had convinced me to purchase and try some cute little buttons, but they were just really ugly on the sweater and not really complimentary to the feel of cables. I'm much happier with the new buttons, but PK seems a little hurt that I changed them against his "expert" advice. I think he'll have to admit that the new buttons look better even if they don't have as much personality.

Now for the photos:



Front View


Back View






Close-up of cable stitch pattern







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