Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Spring How I Long For Thee

Was it really just a few weeks ago that I was complaining about global warming and lack of winter in the frozen tundra of Minnesota? Oh, how quickly my tune has changed! How long must I endure this bone-chilling, arctic winter? Where is the smog-induced warmth that I crave?

For those not aware, my office recently relocated to another building in the same office complex. However, a majority of the people and functions I work with did not relocate (corporate efficiency, at its best). Inevitably, the thing or person I need is always "in the other building" regardless of which building I am currently in. This has left me spending most of my day scurrying outdoors across the polar abyss we call a parking lot and bounding up and down the stairs in each building. So far today, I estimate that I've burned about 1200 calories taking the stairs alone (therefore, I feel I've earned this greasy piece of pizza, thank you very much).

Due to this recent change in my rigorous exercise program (the change being that it now takes place primarily outdoors......oh yeah, and that an exercise program actually exists), I have found in necessary to revise my Crafty Resolutions by moving #4 up on the list to #3. I deserve some new yummy yarn and my frost-bitten ears will thank me for it! I wonder how many calories knitting burns....

So your wonderfully warm scarf patterns and/or yarn recommendations are much appreciated. I am also in need of some matching mittens, so I might feel compelled to add that to the list in the near future.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Ah, sweet cubicle. I have returned from my trip. It's just like being in the womb.

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Friday, January 26, 2007

Mimosa Anyone?

The worst part about drinking alcohol in the morning is that you have a hangover in the afternoon. That's what I learned last weekend at our Stamp Club Calendar Exchange and Brunch. I don't usually drink at all and I've never had a mimosa before. So, when another gal in our group volunteered to drive. I decided I'd give it a try....orange juice and champagne....how festive!

The exchange was a great success and once again, I'm excited to hang these pieces of art in my little cubicle. It makes me happy to look at them and who couldn't use a little happiness when they're stuck in a gray cube all day? The food was fabulous at the brunch, which was held at a club member's home. We each brought something to contribute and everything was delicious. I ate until my jeans were uncomfortable. But my favorite thing was the mimosa. It was served in a pretty champagne glass and looked beautiful sitting next to a large crystal bowl of fresh fruit. Is it weird to say that food looked "beautiful"? Good food is a lot like art, so I think it's an apt description. Anyway, I loved being surrounded by these very diverse and very amazing, artistic women drinking mimosas and studying the SU! catalog. It was a nice little escape from my usual hectic weekend.

For the calendar exchange, I was assigned April and November. Here are a couple of photos of my work:

Look very closely and you may be able to see the broken glass technique I used on this November page.

I came home and went straight to bed after the brunch. I woke up very cranky with a really bad headache. So, as much as I loved the mimosa, I don't think I'll make it a part of my regular breakfast routine. Although, after the day I had at work yesterday, a mimosa is sounding really good this morning!

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Success seems to be connected with action. Successful men keep moving.
-Conrad Hilton

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Did Harry Potter Lose Something?

Woohoo! The Never-Ending Scarf...has ended! I finished it earlier this week with much fanfare the Happy Scarf Dance. I'll send it off the MH (Mom's Hubby) this weekend. It's a little belated Christmas present, but it's still cold, right? And when it's cold every man appreciates a new handknit scarf, right?

OK, before you say anything, I am aware that the Never-Ending Scarf may bear a vague resemblance to the slightly more famous Harry Potter scarf. Don't worry, dear Harry is not freezing his delicate throat at Hogwart's. No wonder those colors looked so familiar together in the store! Here's a closer photo showing the stitches and the color that you'll notice is considerably different than those on Harry's neck warmer.

Despite it's odd width, I don't think it turned out too bad. Keep in mind that MH is fifty or sixty something and won't even realize that his new favorite accessory is nearly identical to that of a famous teenaged wizard hero...at least he won't realize it until the neighbor's kid offers to trade him a pack of bubble gum and his favorite baseball card for his awesome Harry Potter scarf so he can take it show-and-tell.

Crafty Resolution #1 CHECK!

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Cold! If the thermometer had been an inch longer we'd all have frozen to death.
- Mark Twain

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Super Storage

Yesterday, PK was a lucky ducky and had a day off work. He even took CT to daycare so he had the whole day to himself. I know, try to contain your jealousy until after you see how he spent his day.

To understand the magnitude of PK's selfless act, you have to understand a little about our house. Instead of a separate kitchen and living room. We built one large room with our kitchen/dining area and living room all combined. I believe it's called "great" room. I can tell you that it's not really all that great when it comes to storage. Despite having a large center island, we run dangerously low on cabinet space in the kitchen. One trip to Sam's Club and we've got boxes of Chef Boyardee stacked on the floor in the living room. In addition, PK and I have a small addiction to board games. I've been told that I'm a little bit competitive, but I prefer to think of it as driven to succeed at all costs. Anyway, our large collection of board games and my numerous scrapbooks and photo albums were stacked on an old white bookshelf leftover from PK's Marine Corps barracks and a garage sale table with chipped baby blue paint. I don't care how careful we were to stack the games and books neatly, it still always looked messy and there was no way to hide it. We could have stored the games someplace else, but we play them at our kitchen table and I love a quick game of Boggle while cooking dinner.

Well, fellow citizens, the battle between function and neatness is no more. With a little help from Home Depot, Super Hubby has saved the day and surprised his wife with new storage cabinets that he bought and installed on his day off work.

OK, now you can be jealous.

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Monday, January 15, 2007

Winter Wonderland

Finally, Minnesota is living up to its reputation. It was bitterly cold all weekend. Then last night the snow came to the delight of children all around town. Even the adults seemed strangely eager to get out and shovel their driveways. We've had so little of it this year that seems like a treat to scrape and haul about 3 or 4 inches off the sidewalk. Speaking of treats, here is a beautiful photo of the Minnehaha Falls from yesterday. I found this photo on our local news website and I think it really captures the beauty of this frozen tundra and it reminds me that it's worth suffering through itchy winter skin and chapped lips to live in such pretty surroundings.

Fresh snow always makes everything look clean and pure. Except for the traffic nightmare, I really enjoy days like today. Luckily, the kids are out of school for Martin Luther King Day so CT will be able to enjoy snowball fights and his new snowboard.

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Friday, January 12, 2007

Nathan's Transplant

As some of you may remember, I have a close high school friend, Nathan, that suffers from a genetic kidney disorder called PKD. Nathan regularly goes through dialysis and is not always feeling his best. We've been encouraged lately by news that a potential donor friend of his was a good match and that a transplant might be scheduled as early as February. So, I was surprised to learn this morning that Nathan had been chosen a receive a kidney from a cadaver and the transplant is happening today. I am so happy for Nathan. I can think of very few people strong enough in faith to endure the uncertainty that comes with this kind of devastating disease. Nathan is one of those people. I am ecstatic that he has this opportunity to overcome his illness. So please say a little prayer for his well-being today and thank God for the life that was lost so that Nathan can live.

Nathan tells me that his wife will be updating his blog when the transplant is complete to let us all know how he is doing.

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

This little box will be your home for sixty hours a week. It comes with an obsolete computer and a binder about safety hazards. Your challenge is to look busy until someone gives you a meaningful assignment.

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007


To be honest, I've been running a little low on things to blog about these days. I've been leading quite a boring existence lately. I go to work. I come home. I microwave/thaw/drive-thru something for dinner. Then I spend the rest of the evening knitting the never-ending scarf while watching old episodes of Star Trek with CT. It's been like this since Christmas. That's what I hate about January...no desperate shopping trips...no burned cookies to rebake. And this year there's not even any real weather to talk about. It's positively balmy by Minnesota standards and there's very little snow. Ho Hum.

There is a little excitement at work today. One of our print vendors has invited the graphic designers to their site for a tour and free lunch. I know excitement is hardly the word to describe this little field trip, but I did say it was a free lunch, right? Anyway, it should take me away from my mundane chores and overdue deadlines for several hours which will be a nice respite. They never let us out of our cubes around here. Oh sure, we sometimes make our way through their little maze to the restroom and we're rewarded with overpriced cheese crackers from the vending machine, but it's not real freedom.

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Monday, January 08, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.
-Mark Twain

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Thursday, January 04, 2007

Crafty Resolutions

In the interest of bettering myself this year, I've come up with a few crafty resolutions for 2007:

  1. Finish knitting the never-ending scarf before next Christmas.
    I have high hopes this will happen, but not without great effort and fortitude on my part. I seem to have made the scarf too wide in an effort to make it look less feminine. As PK pointed out last night, it is now big enough to serve as a baby blanket....not the affect I was going for.

  2. Begin and complete baby knitting project for SHAO before baby arrives in spring.
    This is a very lofty goal considering resolution #1. However, I think I can avoid utter failure by amending this goal to complete the project before I see the baby. Since, SHAO has moved quite a bit further from my home and we only see eachother once or twice a year, this can probably be accomplished.

  3. Begin scrapping CT's baby book.
    My goal is to complete the book by the time the kid graduates high school. Better late than never.

  4. Knit myself a new scarf and mittens to match my new coat.
    I hope I can do this before winter is over if I avoid the too wide mistake, but I'll settle for finishing it before next winter.

  5. Begin scrapping PK's Marine Corps book.
    This will depend on PK and his willingness to help gather the appropriate materials.

  6. Make birthday cards for every one of my friends and co-workers this year.
    I've already started by meticulously writing each birthday in my new planner. However, I fear February will prove to be my biggest challenge. It contains 12 birthdays including PK's and CT's.

  7. Make Thank You cards and use them often.
    I want to make my friends and family know how much I appreciate them this year. A worthy, but difficult task to keep on top of.

These are the major projects I hope to make progress on this year. As with most New Year's resolutions, I'm sure some will be broken. But I tried to make them realistic so maybe I have a fighting chance this year.

I wish you all the best of luck with your own resolutions this year. And remember the Mexican proverb: "A good resolution is like an old horse, which is often saddled but rarely ridden." I'm not really sure what that means, but it sounds profound.

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Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Today's Favorite Quote

Now there are more overweight people in America than average-weight people. So overweight people are now average. Which means you've met your New Year's resolution.
-Jay Leno

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Pig in a Sweater

Over the holidays I took a trip to Branson to visit some family, including my aunt and her little dog, Pig. For blog's sake, we'll call my aunt ANT (we don't say "ont" down there) and we'll call her wee pooch PIG (because that's her name). Anyway, on the plane to and from LB's wedding I knitted until my poor fingers cramped and I managed to complete a tiny dog sweater for my doggie cousin's Christmas gift. I was able to deliver the present in person while in Branson and I snapped a few pictures of the model in her chic garb.

I had to judge the appropriate size by looking up the average size of the papillon breed. PIG's name fits her well and the sweater was a little tight around the middle. However, ANT seems to think that PIG will benefit from a diet this new year and perhaps the sweater will not be as snug by Valentine's Day.

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