dancing like the stars (hardly)

boy do I need practice.

Miles: 3
Total so far: 455

Song of the Day: You make me feel so young


Mileage update...

Miles 3 (1/26)
Miles 3 (1/27)
Miles 2.5 (1/28)

Total so far: 458

Song of the Day: A Movie Script Ending From Death Cab For Cutie

Thanks to all for the encouragement. Smooches!


winter is kickin' my a$$

and it is time that I do something about it.

I'm tired of complaining about it. Tired of whining about it. If you don't see me around here for a little while, don't take it personally. I have to get out of the doldrums.

The computer isn't the place to do that.

I'll be in posting the mileage...

Song of the Day: Let Go performed by Frou Frou


speaking of memories...

I was over at Bill and Stacey's since I noticed they had a new post up and while there catching up I noticed that there was a bit of a memory nagging at the wrinkles of my brain. So I thought I'd come over here and capture it before it was gone.

Billy was rambling a little (as he is won't to do on occasion) about the food at BK and I remember those days of the food being somewhat well, can we call it 'of higher quality' than the stuff you could get from the clown? You were led to believe that at least. I remember those halcyon days of my fast food youth. I can't say we ate at fast food places frequently. It was more of a treat back then. It wasn't like it is for my kid where eating out is the backbone of her diet and finding food in the fridge at home is a shock surprise. But I definitely remember that the BK was the place with the burgers that seemed a little more like a real burger with their flame broiled goodness and their "have it your way" theme song which even now runs through my head in all its "up with people-y" lightness and joy.

I stuck to a pretty basic menu back in the day... a plain burger, small orange soda and small fries. And as I said, it was a treat to go there. But go there I did, and pretty faithfully on the very special occasion... immediately following my orthodontist appointments having gone to have my braces tightened. Dad would take me to my appointment (bear with me mom, I know there were plenty of appointments that you took me to, as well, but I have vivid BK memories going here with dad...) and then he and I would stop for lunch at BK. Thank goodness he wasn't a big clown food fan because I hated that clown. He frightened me. And as Bill pointed out? Ronald himself actually hung out in the place and came and chatted with you as you "enjoyed" your dining experience back then so going to the golden arch place was not a fun time for me. Ever.

Can you imagine what life at BK would be like if the king himself hung out there? It is my belief he would have to fear for his life because I don't think people would leave him alone. If I saw him walking down the street and I was behind the wheel of my SUV? I'm not sure I would be able to control any bat-outta-hell girl impulses which might cause me to run him over because that king? Terrifies me. Seriously. Far worse than Ronald ever did.

Song of the Day:


Miles of Imogen...

Let's get this out of the way first -

Miles - 3.5
Miles to go - 466.5

Today's miles are dedicated to my Birthday twin Butch because I'm thinking about him. I hope he is well wherever he is and if he is still going through treatments I hope they are going well. I heard from a mutual friend that he may be in Arizona for a short visit right now. I'm hoping that may be the case because people haven't seen he or his lovely wife around lately.

Kel and I had tap class tonight and much fun and exercise. We got extra attention from the teacher because none of the other students were in attendance.

Did you all get your lottery tickets? I didn't. :(

Hugs to our friend who lost her grandmother recently. We only learned tonight. I hope you and the rest of your family are doing okay. We're so sorry for your loss.

The Imogen mentioned in the title refers to Imogen Heap. You may have heard her music. Keli received her hot album last year at Christmas (2005) entitled Speak For Yourself and she and I nearly drove all around us crazy listening to it over and over. Then we moved on to other music and didn't listen to it for a long time. Well it was one of those things where one of us pulled it up on iTunes the other day and played it and stuff flooded over both of us. We both had immediate feelings of "Last Winter" and remembered where we were during many of those hours of repeated playings and who we were with and so on. I purchased a few more pieces from Imogen this week and have been listening to them with much the same feelings. And I bought the soundtrack from Last Kiss and one of the songs from last winter is on that cd, so again, the memory floods. Amazing how the memory works and triggers like that.

Do you have strong memory associations? Smell is a strong one for me like music. Certain shampoo can send me to a church camp in Montana in 1981 at the base of the Rocky Mountains. I no longer remember the brand, but I know it when I smell it.

Song of the Day: Loose Ends from Imogen, of course.


Happy Birthday, Jena!

It's another family birthday!

This one belongs to my beautiful niece, Jena. Being of adult-like age now Jena, I believe you should head to the gas station and buy yourself a nice lottery ticket. Yes I do. And if you win? You can buy me something fabulous. Because we all know that I am your favorite auntie, too. Smooches. I love you.

Song of the Day: Sad Eyes from Josh Rouse

perhaps I should change this to the Wednesday whoopie?

Because I can never seem to get it done on Tuesday...

This week's Tuesday Treat is a blogger who always has interesting links on her posts, frequently has a fun or fabulous video from youTube to watch, (Let's face it, who has time to go find these things? I'm glad somebody else does!) and a fascinating point of view on many different topics.

Go see Michelle.

Song of the Day: President of What? from Death Cab for Cutie


some mileage updates

Unfortunately, since I haven't been keeping this up to date here, I am afraid I'm not going to be terribly accurate. I need my friend Katie to show me a fabulous table that I can update somewhere that will be so beautiful I'll want to update it the minute I've finished my workout/run/walk so that I'll do so. And that I can easily put into the the template and that will have a java script or something and will be an auto update for the blog. :) Because she's smart like that.

I'll work my way backwards through the calendar, as well as I can and then I'll total up the miles I do know and post them to my total.

Today I did five miles.

Yesterday (Monday) was three.

This weekend was a bust due to my birthday celebrations (read: migraine).
1/14 was 2.
1/17 was 4.

Which means I can add a measly total of 14 miles to my total... *sigh* I am somewhat behind. But I'm coming on strong. So that's good. I'm picking it up.

My inspiration this month is Katie's 80-year-old mother-in-law. They learned in early December that she has breast cancer. I can't imagine going through any sort of surgery, be it lumpectomy or mastectomy (her own surgery) or whatever is needed to handle breast cancer at 80.

Miles - 14
Miles to go - 470

Song of the Day: 500 Miles by the Proclaimers


cold miles

aren't they keen?

So although the temperature up there for my area has been holding steady today somewhere above twenty degrees, what you don't see is that there has been a brisk breeze kicking up. That meant that when I was out for my very fast (necessity screamed RUN!!!) walk today, it actually felt more like 12 to 15. It wasn't bad when I did the major portion of the walk. But that's when I made a crucial mistake.

I decided to make a stop and have a warm drink before finishing up and heading back home.

It was mostly because there was an errand I needed to take care of with one of the employees who was working at the place I was stopping. I knew she was going to be leaving there soon and I could take care of this thing if I scooted in there quickly before finishing off my walk. But also? I just thought a nice warm drink by the fire would be a cool reward for going out in to the cold and freezing my kadoofus off to get my workout for the day and my mileage put behind me. I need to update some of that, too. Haven't been good about that.

I knew when I set out that this was the ultimate plan. It helped get me moving. It was a little incentive. So when I left the house, I put my little shoulder bag on with a book tucked inside and my coffee card, and I hustled right along and got some good walking in. As I set out I got blasted by the wind but then I didn't notice it anymore. Perhaps I stayed sheltered enough for those first miles because I kept within the housing development and tried to stay a wind-friendly direction. Perhaps I had my eyes on the prize and just didn't notice the cold.

Then, I sat in the coffee shop by that fire, chatted with the employee to do the errand and had some laughs, read my book for a while... and it hit me. I was snug, warm, comfortable inside and out. What the heck was I thinking? I was going to go back out in this gray and dismal, windy and damp stuff and walk back home? I'm not kidding when I tell you that the sub-zero stuff of the other day that I was extolling is so much better than this. This totally sucks.

I whimpered. I sniffled. I sneezed. I totally psyched myself out and could not enjoy the last few pages read. I will have to read them over again because I'm certain I missed every word. My eyes saw them but my brain didn't. (And trust me, this is fascinating stuff, my brain has wanted to be engaged - it's terrifying, but fascinating all the same... Worse Than Watergate: The Secret Presidency of George W. Bush by John W. Dean, former counsel to President Richard Nixon... if it sounds interesting to you by all means read it because it is. If you've already read it? Let me know what you think...)

And when I wrapped the scarf around my neck, zipped my vest, pulled on my mittens and ventured out into it? It was as bad as I was envisioning. It was far worse than the first portion of the walk had been. I'm not certain if the wind was much stronger or if I was now just forced to walk into it the entire trip back but my face and ears were nearly frozen into... here I go. Complaining. My eyes were watering and the tears poured down my cheeks and do you KNOW how good that feels with the cold wind blowing on you? *sigh*

It was COLD dogdamn it. COLD.

Now I have to go figure out the actual miles so I can get that all updated. And post it all separately so that I can list some inspirations in a post that is much separate from complaints. :)

Like the keen wintery shoes? Nice to see I'm not wearing the sandals in the snow now, isn't it? I had those on a couple of days ago. They don't do a great job keeping the feet warm in Wisconsin. New Mexico is singing her siren song...

Song of the day: Ants Marching Dave Matthews Band

a last post before bed...

to spread a little sunshine...

because they bring it to my life.

In my head: sunshine which version comes to YOUR mind?


a new day dawns...

and i wake with migraine still intact... i'd call it a nasty name, but this isn't CursingMama's crib and i don't want to confuse you. ;) so i took the strong stuff around 9:30 when i realized that no amount of sleep was going to cure me. i remembered that i'd heard what sounded like a snowplow a few hours earlier and the sound of somebody shoveling. perhaps the front moving in had triggered it. it often does.

i slept on fitfully and as i passed between sleeping and waking i would pay attention to my head... still pain? sometimes yes, sometimes no... and the side effects. (this med makes my body ache... it's like it takes the migraine and distributes it throughout the rest of my body in my muscles and throat. strange beast.) normal behavior there. and now as i sit here checking on messages from yesterday's post (thanks all, you are lovely) and returning phone calls (thank you, papa) things are progressing pretty much on schedule.

don't know if it will go away or not. stay away or not. i may have a rebound because that is often what happens. but i have stayed away from this med a lot lately as i was tired of the bounce back headache. what good is that?

so i'll continue with the day and see if i can work through it. a lot of people tell me if they bump into me out and about and figure out by catching that little glint in my eyes or the droop that sometimes happens in one of them or the darkness underneath that i have a migraine, that i should be home in bed with the shades pulled. but after 25 years (wow) now of having these buggers, i've figured out that for me, lying in bed just doesn't help. i don't feel any better and unless i'm at my low point (that happened around 11:30 pm yesterday and i was home with my cold pack in the dark) i just waste a lot of time if i'm lying around in bed.

but please remember that migraines are different for everybody. i know a lot of people who have to be in the dark for their entire migraine experience because they cannot function. i know someone who is sick to the stomach for a lot of his migraine. i have only had this happen to me three times. some people need the utter blackness because any light causes them so much more pain. some people need to be lying down. for me? lying down seems to cause even more pain.

do not judge us. migraine is real. and it can be a true nightmare. and it is a difficult thing to live through because none of us want to have them. we don't want to be missing out on pieces of life. your lives. our lives. we've seen the rolling eyes. we've heard the anger. we aren't trying to disappoint anyone but we know that we do. we disappoint friends, family, our children. we go from medication to medication in an attempt to find the next great cure. it's a difficult disease like any disease.

There are a number of places to visit on the web for more information about migraines if you have a loved one who suffers. The National Migraine Association has just one of them with a lot of information, like the information quoted here:


In my head: Maxwell's Silver Hammer from The Beatle's


Happy Birthday Butch!

In a world of farkelers and friends, it's nice to share my birthday with you. :)

I hope you are doing well and having a really great birthday... Hope you are enjoying a nice cup of cocoa or maybe a strawberry smoothie today.

(Butch was the luckiest farkel roller of two dice I ever met. When the rest of us were stopping on a three die roll, he'd always go for another shot... with positive results.)

I'm going to enjoy a little pizza this evening with Michele. It's been a pretty great birthday so far. I began the festivities early by having dinner last night with Mystical. We headed a little nort (intentional) to Marine for burgers 'n beer at Brookside Bar & Grill. Then it was back to her mom's place to watch a little Monk with her mom and Katie the Golden. Then we went upstairs to Mystical's so Chico the cat could join the party. A wild evening, I'm telling you.

This morning I awakened to tp streamers and this very cool birthday card. Which I realize is probably too small for you to read. A certain clever teen I know (you have NO idea how clever) made this beautiful card which tongue-in-cheek mentioned that she knew how birthdays after 40 just get more and more poopy and so, she was giving me plenty to clean up with. She had decorated the whole house with streamers made of tp, as I have already mentioned but you may have missed.

I, in turn, missed the entire joke for about three hours.

I blame the migraine.

tiny sample of the tp and the balloon bee...

We went off to pancake breakfast with my mom (served up by beautiful niece, Erin - earning her way to a mission trip this summer) at Applebees and came home to dessert of oreo cake they purchased oh so stealthily for me around midnight last night whilst I slept...

Back from pizza at Bricks with Michele, who knew nothing of my birthday and still bought my dinner. I have lovely friends. And I got to bring home all of the leftovers! Now I'm off for coffee. Yum!

In my head: A Hard Days Night from The Beatles


Friday's Feast

Friday's Feast 127 week 10
Stolen from Yoshi

Which television shows do you just refuse to miss?
I am not a television person. We do not own a television. Literally. BUT, having said that, I have now become a series DVD buyer. Only of a couple of currently-running series, however. We own and love Gilmore Girls and 24. I have also purchased Arrested Development but do not know if that is currently running. And have only watched one episode, so I wouldn't call it something not to be missed as yet.

Who did you last speak to on the telephone?

How many pillows do you keep on your bed?
I keep three on the bed currently, for looks, but only use one.

Main Course
Name one addition to your computer (software, hardware, etc.) that you’d love to have.
I can't think of a thing at the moment. My computer is primo.

What is your favorite foreign food?
I'll jump into the Italian food bin for this one. Right now I'm really in love with risotto.

In my head: Coldplay's I Miss You which is far better than what I woke up with this morning - From the musical A Chorus Line, character Cassie singing I Want to Dance For You! OMG, I thought I was going to seriously poke my knitting needles into my ears but that would have done NO good because it was all taking place inside my head. So I shared this earworm with my daughter who was still sleeping at the time. I marched right into the room where she was sleeping, announced that I was off to the coffee shop to meet Mystical for writing, and that I just wanted to share with her the lovely song that was playing in my head. Then I burst into song. Surprisingly? She didn't toss any pillows or shoes or anything else that might have been lying near her bed.


Tuesday Treat...

I'm a day late with the Tuesday Treat but I didn't want to upstage my niece's golden birthday. So I now present it here a little postponed. I'm a little nervous to do it, actually. Last week's victim recipient of this prestigious title rather fell off the blog wagon and only posted once more all week after her usual typical burst of posts. I'm not certain if that was my fault or not, but it makes me a little stressed out to bestow this pain in the butt honor on anyone else.

What the heck...

This week's Tuesday Treat blog is Jenorama. Another member of the red pen gang, you know she is a brilliant writer, she has beautiful children, she is a smashing karaoke singer, and a generous person... big hearted. Stop over and have a read.

In my head: The Mountain Goats again...


Happy Golden Birthday, Caitlin!

I've rather gotten away from the family birthday postings around here. So I'm going to try and be better about it. I got permission from my lovely niece to post a photo of her out here first, and want to wish her a happy birthday on this special day...

Love you, dear! I hope you are enjoying this day!

THIS is winter

This is the winter that I remember. The good stuff. The negative numbers. The mind-numbing cold that freezes the tiny little hairs way back inside your nose when you breathe.

Yup. It's here. I'd change my avatar? But there is no use. There is nothing that expresses the true spirit of this kind of cold out in avatar land. I love this kind of winter. Don't play with me when you're coming on, winter. Just hit me. Slap me in the face with everything you've got and give me the shock every time I walk out the door. THIS is what winter is all about. THIS is why I choose to live in Wisconsin. I mean, the thing I've been hating about winter is when it just toys with me with it's little just below freezing temperatures that are annoyingly cold and damp. Seriously? That isn't winter. That's just ridiculous.

THIS is winter.

Click for Hudson, Wisconsin Forecast

In my head: The Weepies


Monday Ramblings

Well, it was a pretty light snow as these things go. There were several schools around the cities that opened a couple of hours late, but none that closed for the day as far as I could see.

I'm still trying to get some word on how much we actually got. Not having a tv does actually blow sometimes. Although, our news isn't all that local. I'd get a report of how much snow they got at the airport, which is about 45 minutes from here, so it wouldn't be that accurate anyway. Today's forecast is for more snow all around the region and after the morning's beautiful sunny brilliance, it has completely clouded up and looks like the sky could start dumping the white stuff again at any moment. Thanks Iki. You can stop wishing now. This is enough for me for this week. ;)

I'm REALLY looking forward to tomorrow's weather, though. They're calling it an arctic sun day. High of 5. Woohoo. Toss a little wind into the mix to really give us a good blast of the arctic while you're at it. I love winter. I love winter. I love winter.

I stayed home this morning for my coffee. Made it myself. Stop it. I heard that gasp. I ground the beans. I put them in the coffee maker. I made a whole pot and am halfway through it. No fancy schmancy caramel macchiato latte frappacino with a squirt of mocha. Nothing fancy at all. (I don't do fancy. It's all I can do to grind the beans and make the coffee.) They hadn't plowed my driveway yet and I didn't want to pack the snow down if I didn't have to. Going out for coffee was lower priority. There were other things I could get done anyway. Emails to send for Relay and bills to pay. Thank you cards to write... So yeah. I'm just enjoying my coffee in house. By the fire. And now the plowing and shoveling is done and I'm going to finish the coffee and maybe head out to get some other errands done. But I might have a coffee shop stopping free day. Think of the money for Italy I can save if I do that once a week!

Think I may crochet a mitten or two today, too. Got a new pattern. Excited to try it out. I'm such a homebody. *snort*

Have a great Martin Luther King day ya'll. Enjoy the winter. Wherever you are. Even if you have to turn on the air conditioner to do it (lucky).

In my head: Fred Astaire but I can't quite make out the song he's singing. I can hear the melody, but not the words... something about tap shoes or top hats. Maybe it isn't even him. I'm guessing here. Driving me crazy. Might be that other guy. You know... damn. I'm telling ya, Kel... we outta make a game...


All that silliness for today...


Your latest urge to speed up your life might be a bit shortsighted. After all, there's some good stuff on the horizon, and you definitely don't want to miss it. Sure, there's going to be some not-so-good stuff, too, but it's all part of the experience of life. Embrace the balance and ride the tempo of your life the way it is -- slow and purposeful. Learn to dance according to the music that's being played ... your current groove is a good one.

Found this in my pile of drafts that never got posted. It was from September of last year and since it was a pretty apropos horoscope for me no matter when I found it, I thought I'd go ahead and post it.

I couldn't believe how many drafts there were in that pile. May have to go through them and see what else I still need to publish. Or not.

Oh my...

Did I say that winter had not arrived yet?

The snow is piling up on the window ledges outside the coffee shop. It looks like I am sitting inside a snow globe!

Ran a few errands earlier this afternoon, heard that snow was on the way and wrapped them up as soon as I could. Now I'm doing a little Relay stuff and will be heading home (it's only a few blocks) soon to curl up with a good book by the fire.

I have some serious organization to do this week. I got it underway last week and I'd really like to get it finished this month. January - the month of organization. I cannot believe how fast this first month of the new year is going. We are speeding toward the first Girls' Night of 2007 or something.

Okay. Heading out. I'm going to finish up my stuff at home. There is nothing worse than trying to relax in a cozy spot when you can tell the employees just want to get home. :) I don't blame them, though. Wow. The snow is gorgeous. Happy Winter!

In my head: I Can't Remember from The Thorns (they are a guilty pleasure)

Sunday sloth...

Stolen from Jen:

You Belong in Amsterdam

A little old fashioned, a little modern - you're the best of both worlds. And so is Amsterdam.
Whether you want to be a squatter graffiti artist or a great novelist, Amsterdam has all that you want in Europe (in one small city).

I haven't updated my mileage in a while and I've already fallen a little behind in my goal, but as CursingMama said in her optimistic way, I won't have any problem finishing the 500 by June (because she believes!) because it is a decent goal and I'm starting out slowly so that I can build up and do the higher mileage I was accustomed to when I was really giving it my all during the other 1500 miles. So...
Miles - 9.5
Miles to go - 484

Please, would YOU want to go out in this cold? I really should join a gym.

Stolen from SCarrGo at Cats and Yarn:

Your Mood Ring is Light Blue

Emotions mixed



Of course it is. I couldn't warm up a mood ring in a 50 degree house if I wanted to. ;)

Your Movie Buff Quotient: 74%

You are a total movie buff. Classics, blockbusters, indie favorites... you've seen most of them.

Your friends know to come to you whenever they need a few good DVD rental suggestions.

In my head: Walk Like an Egyptian Somebody please help me... This stuff drives me crazy. Oh wait, I can turn on the iTunes!!!


Ten Degrees...

Hey, winter has arrived! Okay, the idea of winter has arrived. Snow hasn't arrived, but this seems to be the way we get winter around here these days. *sigh* The cold comes far before any real snow now. Which for the people living in the country as I used to, some true problems can occur. Hope all of those people living out there not on city sewer have their septic systems covered with a good insulating layer of straw or something. Because this weather can cause havoc with those systems.

As for me? Yeah, they cause havoc with me, too. I will have a good attitude about winter, I will have a good attitude about winter...

I was supposed to be walking in a parade in a couple of weeks - February 2nd. It almost always turns out to be the coldest night of the year, but our little town seems to enjoy celebrating it's winter location with a balloon festival each year and our Committee is going to have a parade unit to promote the Relay. Great idea, yes? I thought to myself, "What better way to get into this new attitude and spirit of winter than to dive right into the heart of it and walk in this parade! Get thee into costume (our theme for the Relay this year is Over the Rainbow as in Wizard of Oz) and get out there and do it!" but alas... I've been gifted some tickets for that same night to see/hear Joshua Radin and will have to miss the parade by attending a very warm concert instead.

Ah well.

Mileage updates to come...

In my head: Cold as Ice by Foreigner


Tuesday Treat...

Other news forthcoming, but for the first post of the day I wanted to get this out here...

Go visit friend, editor, adventurer, diva, traveler, and fellow mom to a fascinating teen girl... my pal Katie. She is the author of the blog at Bosphorus Ramblings and there's no telling what you'll find there from one day to the next, but you can bet there will be some interesting tale about life in her very historical city of Istanbul and photos which are often colorful both thematically and because her subjects are just darned beautiful and full of light and life.

I recommend a bookmark to her site, as well because you'll want to visit her often and keep up with the tales of interest in her neighborhood. I keep coming back for the pretty pictures of pretty people and kitties, personally. ;) And to hear what she's reading. And to see how the house looks as it gets updated occasionally. The family is filled with bibliophiles so they tend to have some crazy looking bookshelves. Give me a photo of a great bookshelf any day.


A resolution even I can live with...

In the year 2007 I resolve to:
Cause more road rage.

Get your resolution here.

In my head: The Mountain Goats [thanks Keli! :)]


For Betsy...

Miles - 3.5
Miles to go - 493.5

Today's miles were for Betsy, Bluegrass Mama's friend.

How about my friend, Betsy, undergoing chemo for breast cancer. She's one day older than I am, so it really struck home!

We're on the way! Hugs to Betsy, and to you, BGM!

2007 in Preview

Swiped from Bluegrass Mama because she is wise, and I thought it would be interesting to predict/announce what might be/is coming up for me and mine...

January: I'll be getting older this month. Well, I mean we're getting older every day, but yeah. You know what I mean. But even MORE fun? I'll be joining CursingMama and Kazoofus and Mystical at a Girls' Night Out this month! Woohoo!

February: Make so many truffles for Valentine's Day that my fingers don't move by the end of the month.

March: Keli turns 19 and we perform in our dance recital.

April: Truffling for Easter. Seriously truffling. And fundraising for Relay. Big time fundraising.

May: Papa Elf has a birthday.

June: We'll be Over the Rainbow for Relay 2007

July: When was that Blogathon? Uh huh. I think I'm doing blogathon again. That is the focus of July.

August: I'm guessing but this MIGHT be the timeframe of the trip to Grand Marais for a couple of bloggers I know and I...

September: Keli and a couple of friends head off to Europe for a time of backpacking and staying in hostels.

October: Mystical and I take another road trip. Let's see. This time we'll be going to New Mexico. Yeah. And maybe I'll stay there. heh.

November: I write a novel.

December: Holiday shopping and truffling. That is what December means for 2007.

For Miles.

Miles - 3
Miles to go - 497

Started the mileage. Started slowly. Need to do that so I don't knock myself out right from the start.

This one is for Miles, friend to Amy and Earl who lost his cancer battle just this past week. I received an email from Amy who says this:

He was one of the four that Earl went with twice a year on his fishing trip with the guys. It will never be the same. But I like to think that we will always have a piece of him in our home with his expert craftsmanship. Its just so hard to understand and even harder to accept that all this happened to such a happy guy in such a drastically short amount of time. Its almost like he never had a chance. But I will always remember him the way I saw him last, happy and smiling, bouncing around on those stilts spackling our ceiling.

I pray for his family to get through this and hope that when the future holiday seasons arrive, they don't find sadness but rather can find some happiness in knowing that Miles is in a better place. He never got to have a family, pay off his house, or retire. And in the end, none of that mattered. It really makes the rest of us realize what's important in life. He did have two best friends, and I think anybody who's lucky enough to have two must be a pretty good guy.

I thought those were really lovely words for him. Hugs Amy and Earl. Again I am sorry for the loss of your friend. Miles was 41.


tales of motherhood

FroufrouI was doing a little surfing, a little reading and a little chuckling today throughout the blogosphere. I just came from Motherhood Uncensored where I read with delight about her Christmas with the little one and how all attempts at keeping her daughter's play time experiences as gender neutral as possible seem to go awry because try as she might, the beautiful girl seems to love most the playskool kitchen and the pink ballet outfit (complete with slippers). I'm not saying this is delightful because I want all little girls to be girly and little boys to be he-man boys. That doesn't sound like me, does it? Easter Bonnet

I'm simply giggling here as I read along because looking at that beautiful child in her ballet pink and reading the story reminds me so much of my own experience raising Kel. How many trucks and tools and dinosaurs and non girly toys did I thrust upon my own little girl in an attempt to raise her as non-pink as possible? For every frilly OshKosh Kiddress gifted her by a well-meaning grandmother or auntie, or lace-trimmed blouse or pink and frou-frou decorated jogging suit, I was at the store finding a Packer shirt to match grandpa's and a pair of denim bib-overalls with a flannel shirt for underneath. She had little hiking boots and for out in the woods or muddy field? Tall mud boots, but no flowery pink ones. Those are silly and girly. These are tall and brown and just like mom's.

But even with all of this gender equity stuff, what did she return to time and again as a little girl? What did she like most? The taffeta and lace and pink and purple. The dolls, the babies, the pretty things that were most girlish. So I'm kind of thinking along those same lines as many of the commenters out there who wonderedFlower Girl about it being hard-wired... genetic... Maybe. Why not? All I know is this... My child is now 18. She is a wonderful person. For as many of those 18-years as possible, I have let her be who it is Favorite Dressshe was meant to be. Perhaps the previous paragraphs didn't sound that way, but while I bought a great variety of things for her to play with and wear, I never forced her one direction or another. (Would you argue this point, Kel?)

She is a unique individual. She has, for the most part, always walked her own path, not doing things simply because she was trying to please one person or another. She doesn't give in to peer pressure and never has. She did eventually pass through her Running Shoes Rule pink and frilly phase. That actually went by the wayside around kindergarten when she discovered it was much easier to keep up with (and pass) her best friend Eric if she wore jogging suits and tennis shoes all of the time. I don't think she put on a dress again for another several years unless some occasion forced it. :)
Artistic Beginnings

And at some point there, art grabbed her. And she sank deep into it. And was swept up in it. Shortly after that, clothing became one more way to express that artistic and fairy at workindividual sense of style. And then she found there were other ways too, outside of the realm of pen (poetry) and charcoal and paint and ink... She could express it through her hair and her makeup and henna and most recently, when she created this tattoo.

So you can't really mold children and expect them to come out in a specific shape or form. Well, not if you want them to be strong individuals when they are adults. I don't believe you can, anyway. Wow. Just a little blog surfing brought all of this about today. And then a little photo album surfing. Ruminating and such.

Hope you're enjoying the new year. I am.

Edited to add: Inspired to create a set in flickr entitled In Style capturing various looks of Kel. I have more albums at home to go through and many archived photos on another hard drive at home to pull some new photos into it. She'll be thrilled. heh.

In my head: Coldplay

Tuesday Treat...

I decided to institute something new here just because I could. It's my house and I'll make the rules. Or something like that. So I decided that Tuesdays in the month of January are going to be the day I tell you of a fun site I check out on a regular or semi-regular basis.

And it isn't because I have a huge readership and want to direct my hundreds of daily readers their way. HA! I have three. On a good day. So yeah. All three of you might want to check out this site.

It's called Ashvegas. Which in itself is pretty fun. I have no idea how I stumbled upon it. I think I was doing a search on something. Perhaps there was a comment by someone and I was just doing the old "follow the chain" thing. Whatever it was, however it happened, I landed there. In Ashvegas (a blog about life in Asheville, North Carolina) you will find well written prose, humorous sarcastic bits of news, part photo essay, part written. Much poking fun at the world around them. But all written from a place of love for the author's life there. In Ashvegas. That much is obvious. Feelin' the love...

Check it out. Then come back and tell me what you think.

Have any sites you enjoy visiting? One that makes you smile or laugh? Tell me! Laughing is high on my list of priorities of 2007. Thanks.

In my head: Leaving Las Vegas by Elvis, duh.


So here it is - a new year.

And as I said, it is time. I said that in several places on my list. I said it in my newsletter from the Brain Trust. And now I'm saying it here in a plain statement of fact.

It is time. It begins again. With a little fanfare even.

It's time once again for the 500-miles to Nowhere Pledge!

500-mile Haiku
Knees scream DO NOT RUN
May do more miles by walking
All by June I will

This really isn't a difficult task. I can do this. And by the time I'm finished, the knees won't be screaming and the running will be okay again. I'll be ready for more. This, this is going to be fun.

Interested in helping me stay motivated? Tell me who you're thinking about when you watch me working for the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life. I'd love to hear about them.

Smooches, everybody.

Miles to go - a groovy 500

In my head: Original Rocky theme. How corny is that?

Winter has arrived with the new year.

But I vow to have a new attitude about it.

A positive attitude.

Isn't the snow pretty? Isn't the cold air refreshing?

Won't New Mexico feel downright lovely when I get there?

The view from my window:

iTunes is playing: Brighter Than Sunshine from Aqualung