October 31, 2005

Devil's Lake Photo Fest

First off:

Happy Halloween!

(I'm a gypsy fortune teller... It was all I could pull together last minute in my closet.)

Secondly, Devil's Lake. I think this is a befitting park to discuss on Halloween, don't you?

DS and I headed out to what he commonly refers to as "the lake" early Saturday morning. I had been promised 60 degree weather, yet when I emerged from the car I was met with fog, wind, and a tart 33. We met his friend Dylan, and Dylan's friend Katie, who bestowed freshly baked cinnamon doughnuts on us. In return, I bestowed upon them some not so friendly words, as said Dylan had made said weather promise. I can be very unforgiving. It's a fault I'm okay with.

The light coming through the trees was breath taking. We weren't expecting the leaves to be so beautiful this late in the season. Everyone I spoke with was sure the weekend before would be the peak, which is why DS and I had made such an effort to make it out to Governor Dodge. However, this weekend made last weekend seem bland. The drive in made me feel like I was in Lothlorien. Pictures couldn't do it justice. Light was filtering gently down through the branches, and tall trees covered in leaves of golden yellow were releasing a constant, yet slow, stream down to the ground. It was so beautiful. Almost like magic.

Maybe the elves vacation here?

After a quick stop at one of the rustic toilets (ie. a hole in the ground, no running water), we started the climb up the bluffs. The park map has it measured out at 0.3 miles. It seems like it would be easy enough, except it's all straight up hill. The trail is an historic CCC route, built entirely of local quartzite. From the parking lot, you would have no idea the trail was there. In fact, coming back down, I didn't always know where to go. I'd be walking along and realize I was about to go over a 30 ft drop of sharp rocks. But I think a good trail should blend in, so as not to distrupt the setting, the main reason you go to these parks.

The trail goes through those rocks. Can you find it?

Two puffs of my inhaler later, I'm standing a good 400 ft up in the air at the edge of a cliff. The valley floor is stretched out beneath me, the trees an array of color. I took many pictures, and then huddled behind a large boulder so as not to be blown away. The wind was in a fury that morning. I watched DS and Dylan set the tops ropes for the climbs we would doing. For ease in finding them, climbs are grouped in so-called amphitheaters. The group had chosen the one called the "Bedroom Amphitheater", where we climbed routes titled things such as "Orgasm" and "Foreplay." While the day was an enjoyable experience, I'm disappointed that these climbs did not live up to their names.

Dylan on "Orgasm Direct".

Being anti-large-group as we are, the afternoon brought more people to this popular bluff and we moved on. It takes some time to set up the ropes, which is fine by me. I'll wait around for 45 min if it means that I won't die when I fall. Now that it was indeed the promised 60ish, perfect sunny day, I spent this time taking pictures. This is also when I ruined the lense on my good digital camera. Windy days on bluffs is not a good day to try balancing your camera on a tree limb to photograph yourself. Oh well, such is life. The camera still takes pictures, if in a more limited range. Though I later got a crash session in what a capacitor does...

Post-break; Pre-realization.

It was in this new set up that DS accomplished his "shining moment", when he cleaned a climb called "Beginner's Demise." I of course did not even attempt trying something whose name declares the folly of doing so. Though I did pull out some sweet layback moves on another climb further down the trail. I wasn't really feeling the saucy climber Saturday. The hike and scenary made the day worth it despite my lack of motivation.

I've decided this is where Mordor use to be. Can't you see Sam and Frodo climbing those steps? I think they just flooded the valley after the great battle was won. That must be why it's called Devil's Lake. And that rock formation they call Devil's Doorway? Nope, that's just where the all-seeing eye was hanging out before the tower fell.

Having spent all night the night before on the phone with Mo, meaning I had at most 4 hours of sleep, it was a tiring day. I didn't make it 5 minutes in the car before falling asleep on the way home. It was awesome. I feel like I've experience fall in all it's glory now, and shall be content even if I don't get another good day outside before winter.

October 30, 2005

Banned Books

I know I promised to post my Devil's Lake pictures today, but I an inflamed and must post something else. I stumbled upon a list of the most challenged books in America from 1990-2000 at Malissa's site. I've known of this list before, but I've never really read through it. Today I did, and I am appalled.


  • Scary Stories (Series) by Alvin Schwartz
  • Daddy’s Roommate by Michael Willhoite
  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  • The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  • Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
  • Harry Potter (Series) by J.K. Rowling
  • Forever by Judy Blume
  • Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
  • Alice (Series) by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
  • Heather Has Two Mommies by Leslea Newman
  • My Brother Sam is Dead by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
  • The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  • The Giver by Lois Lowry
  • It’s Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris
  • Goosebumps (Series) by R.L. Stine
  • A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • Sex by Madonna
  • Earth’s Children (Series) by Jean M. Auel
  • The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson
  • A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
  • Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
  • Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers
  • In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak
  • The Stupids (Series) by Harry Allard
  • The Witches by Roald Dahl
  • The New Joy of Gay Sex by Charles Silverstein
  • Anastasia Krupnik (Series) by Lois Lowry
  • The Goats by Brock Cole
  • Kaffir Boy by Mark Mathabane
  • Blubber by Judy Blume
  • Killing Mr. Griffin by Lois Duncan
  • Halloween ABC by Eve Merriam
  • We All Fall Down by Robert Cormier
  • Final Exit by Derek Humphry
  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Girls: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Daughters by Lynda Madaras
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Beloved by Toni Morrison
  • The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
  • The Pigman by Paul Zindel
  • Bumps in the Night by Harry Allard
  • Deenie by Judy Blume
  • Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
  • Annie on my Mind by Nancy Garden
  • The Boy Who Lost His Face by Louis Sachar
  • Cross Your Fingers, Spit in Your Hat by Alvin Schwartz
  • A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein
  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice)
  • Asking About Sex and Growing Up by Joanna Cole
  • Cujo by Stephen King
  • James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
  • The Anarchist Cookbook by William Powell
  • Boys and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy
  • Ordinary People by Judith Guest
  • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
  • What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Boys: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Sons by Lynda Madaras
  • Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
  • Crazy Lady by Jane Conly
  • Athletic Shorts by Chris Crutcher
  • Fade by Robert Cormier
  • Guess What? by Mem Fox
  • The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
  • The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline Cooney
  • Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  • Lord of the Flies by William Golding
  • Native Son by Richard Wright
  • Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women’s Fantasies by Nancy Friday
  • Curses, Hexes and Spells by Daniel Cohen
  • Jack by A.M. Homes
  • Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo A. Anaya
  • Where Did I Come From? by Peter Mayle
  • Carrie by Stephen King
  • Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
  • On My Honor by Marion Dane Bauer
  • Arizona Kid by Ron Koertge
  • Family Secrets by Norma Klein
  • Mommy Laid An Egg by Babette Cole
  • The Dead Zone by Stephen King
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
  • Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
  • Always Running by Luis Rodriguez
  • Private Parts by Howard Stern
  • Where’s Waldo? by Martin Hanford
  • Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene
  • Little Black Sambo by Helen Bannerman
  • Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  • Running Loose by Chris Crutcher
  • Sex Education by Jenny Davis
  • The Drowning of Stephen Jones by Bette Greene
  • Girls and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy
  • How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell
  • View from the Cherry Tree by Willo Davis Roberts
  • The Headless Cupid by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
  • The Terrorist by Caroline Cooney
  • Jump Ship to Freedom by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
I followed Malissa's lead and put the books I've read in bold. Not only have I read those, but many of them I consider to be among the greatest books ever written. They're the books that I kept when I donated my childhood books to a poor elementary school library. I mean, these are books that truly and deeply moved me. I cried, I stayed up all night pondering, I laughed. Why would people try to take away something that beautiful?

*sigh* I am sad.

Web Design

Some of you may have already noticed my new color scheme. I've decided to take up web design as a hobby. I mean, I'm already artistic, computer literate, and enjoy spending lots of time online. Why not?

This first one is a practice run, and also a special for the holiday.

A Perfect Fall Day

Today was the best day. DS woke me at 7am with coffee and raisin oatmeal. We spent the better part of the day at Devil's Lake with some friends, hiking and climbing. The trees were perfect, the weather was perfect, and the people were perfect. It's not everyday you meet someone who has lived at Taliesin and wants to take you there. As I've mentioned before, going there will be a dream come true.

But the lake is tomorrow's post. We came home and got ourselves showered and dressed for company. I decided this year to throw my own pumpkin carving party. This was an annual tradition with my circle of friends back home in Kentucky. However, it did not go as planned. Apparently Halloween in Madison is scary, as crazy, drunk college students riot and break shit downtown dressed in poorly imagined costumes. Almost everyone was out of town this weekend to avoid it. One person did come out, though she failed to comply with the "byop" or "bring your own pumpkin" rule. She helped DS carve his instead. Because I'm tired from staying up all night laughing with Mo, I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Look at that amazing focus as they double team it.

My sweet sweet balcony, all spooked out.
My pumpkin: The Cheat
DS and Katie's pumpkin, and by far the coolest pumpkin ever: Trogdor, The Burninator!!!
Though unfortunately majesty free, since they wussed out.

Note: Pumpkins were carved from stencils found at H*R.

Also, please beware: In the event that you feel you can take apart your digital camera and fix your lens, which is no longer retracting, do not touch the flash capacitor, as it will shock the shit out of you even sans batteries, and leave you hurting for hours. And also mess up your sense of taste.

October 29, 2005

I love Mo!

Tonight, I spent all night on the phone with Mo. I love her. She's my new best friend. In fact, I made out an application for the position, which she passed with flying colors. She bought us a circle book. She's going to come over with a slumber party. We're going to the zoo.

People who can keep me on the phone all night, laughing to boot, rock in my book. But then, everyone knows Mo Rocks!

October 27, 2005

I didn't really need a quiz to tell me this...

Your Travel Profile:

You Are Very Well Traveled in the Midwestern United States (75%)

You Are Mostly Untraveled in the Southern United States (15%)

You Are Mostly Untraveled in the Western United States (11%)

You Are Mostly Untraveled in Latin America (7%)

You Are Mostly Untraveled in Western Europe (7%)

You Are Untraveled in Africa (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Asia (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Australia (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Canada (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Eastern Europe (0%)

You Are Untraveled in New Zealand (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Scandinavia (0%)

You Are Untraveled in Southern Europe (0%)

You Are Untraveled in the Middle East (0%)

You Are Untraveled in the Northeastern United States (0%)

You Are Untraveled in the United Kingdom (0%)

White Sox 4-0!!

Take that DS!! Chicago is in all ways far superior to Houston! I love Chicago!!

Oh, and where's that romantic weekend to Chicago in a 4 star hotel you promised me a year ago??? I love you baby :)

October 26, 2005

I'm Back!

Geez people! I haven't even been away two full days, and already I'm getting comments wondering where I've disappeared to. Well, I'll tell you. I've been working. And also last night, DS and I decided to make our own Halloween decorations. Can you tell which two are his, and which two are mine? Brownie points to the winner!

October 24, 2005

Power Color?

I usually buy into things like power colors.. but Lime Green?? Really? *shudders*

Your Power Color Is Lime Green

At Your Highest:

You are adventurous, witty, and a visionary.

At Your Lowest:

You feel misunderstood, like you don't fit in.

In Love:

You have a tough exterior, but can be very dedicated.

How You're Attractive:

Your self-awareness and confidence lights up a room.

Your Eternal Question:

"What else do I need in my life?"

October 23, 2005


After waiting 5 minutes for the last post to publish, with the screen reloading every few seconds to say that 0% files were published, I finally got this:

My response?? No shit.

October 22, 2005

Fall at Governor Dodge

Yesterday, DS and I went to Governor Dodge State Park for some hiking and tree watching. The fall leaves are right at their peak here in southern Wisconsin at the moment. We wanted to take advantage of the great views while we could.

Small creek waterfall.

Warning signs found along the paths.
Cool lake with trees reflecting.Different lake. Scary purple cess pool lake.

I like to take pictures of mushrooms.

I took more pictures, but I'm tired of uploading them and moving them around. Plus, blogger is being stupid tonight.

October 21, 2005

I love Peanuts!

You are Schroeder!

Which Peanuts Character are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

October 20, 2005

Speaking of DS

I think my birthday the year before, some people gave me a package of those $1 magnet alphabet kits for your refrigerator. I'm the nice one.. I leave sweet things, like "Rob is hawt."

Him? No. He leaves me sweet things of another variety.

October 19, 2005

Offensive Candy

Remember when I said that I won't read the last book in a series because I don't want the series to end? I do the same kind of thing with other good things as well. Tonight's topic: Candy.

When I went to Huber's two weeks ago, one of the things I picked up was a nifty looking Halloween sucker. I love suckers. I've been holding onto it all this time, because anticipation is half of what makes things good. You know, like Christmas. Or in the movie Vanilla Sky, what Penelope Cruz's character called pleasure delaying.

So here it's been two weeks, and tonight I decided its time. I'm going to savor this candy I've been holding onto. Here is a list of why this sucker was most horrendous:

  • I opened the cellophane, only to discover the sucker was broken. This is a mortal offense, much like broken candy canes.
  • Discovered inside said sucker was what appeared to be snot colored goo. Ew.
  • Upon a tentative lick to see if said sucker was indeed as gross as it looked, it was found to be much worse than expected.
DS tried this sucker too, because I like to share my misery with others. His reaction? "Is that supposed to be candy corn flavored? I think it's fair to say that poo on a stick would taste better than that sucker."

There's little worse than candy letting you down. See for yourself.

October 17, 2005

Losing Faith

So, when I was a kid, my grandparents use to take me to Cardinal Stadium to see the Louisville Redbirds. It was here that my love of baseball grew. It was here that I learned to keep score the real way (I don't need those silly tips between plays that Miller Park puts on the scoreboard). It was here that I learned that it paid to be nice to people. You see, my grandparents had season tickets in the same two seats as far back as I can remember. They were always sweet to the people that worked at the stadium. Well, I've never seem them not be sweet. They knew the guy that wore the Billy Bird costume.

This meant my brother and I tended to get picked to go out on the field. Yeah, that's right. I rode the double-seater bike around Cardinal Stadium. (Please look away from my outfit, an overly large cheerleading shirt that makes it look like I'm not wearing shorts, and is further evidence to the very uncool person I once was. Please further ignore the fact that I've tricked myself into believing I have become cool with age.)

So what's my point? I'll tell you. Look closely at this picture of Billy Bird (this guy later took his way awesome "umpire dance" on the road). Notice his jersey? Look familiar?
You see, once upon a time, when the Louisville Redbirds were the Louisville Redbirds and not the Louisville Bats who play at Slugger Field, they were a AAA team owned by the St. Louis Cardinals. This, by the natural extrapolation of my young mind, made me a fan of said Cardinals.

In fact, in Middle School, some assignment gave me the opportunity to write to St. Louis, and tell them how much I adored their team. I don't really remember why one of my teachers thought we should write to sports teams or famous people or whatever it was. I do remember that I was rewarded some time later by a package full of free stuff, and a letter of thanks for being so supportive. No doubt, this only solidified my affiliation with the team. I was one of them.

So let's fast forward a bit. I get older, don't see my grandparent's so much, they get too old to get their money's worth out of season tickets, and suddenly, I'm the only baseball fan I know. Granted, I've never been the kind of fan that keeps up with the names of everyone on the team, or detailed accounts of their records. However, I am a very loyal fan. So when I started dating DS last year, an avid Yankee fan, it was only natural that I goad him throughout the season. This was especially fun when the Yankees failed to make it to the World Series while my Cardinals did. Though not so fun when we were beat by the Red Sox. The Red Sox?? Good God....

This year, I again have the opportunity to gloat over the Yankee's quick removal from the playoffs. Now.. DS is rooting for the Astros. He claims it's because he's in love with Roger Clemens, but his "Here we go Astros, clap clap" chants as the Cardinals keep losing have a certain malicious tone to them.

Oh right, I said I was getting to the point. Considering that the ties that brought me to this team were broken some time ago, with the Redbirds becoming the Riverbats, and finally the Bats as they changed hands several times, am I still required to be a fan of this team that keeps letting me down? Doesn't selling my real team (the Redbirds) constitute a breach of contract between us? Does the evidence of the planned demolition of Busch Stadium not further my argument? Does it hurt my case that I really liked St. Louis the two days I was there?

I'm thinking about switching to the Cubs... I've always loved Chicago. The very grandparents that gave me baseball genes love the Cubs. I don't think I'll have to worry about facing off each post-season with DS this way... I need some advice.

Before I forget: Yesterday, both the manager AND a batter got thrown out of the game!!! Ugh. And tonight, we were winning most of the game. Suddenly, in the 8th inning, they give it up. I guess when you're one game away from losing the playoffs, it's okay to give up in the 8th inning. I'm going to hide from DS, as I feel some heavy taunting coming my way...
UPDATE: Okay, it's the middle of the ninth. That beloved Albert just whacked the most amazing grand slam with two men on base, putting us back in the lead. Even if we don't hold it in the bottom of the 9th, I'm so impressed with this will to hang on. They didn't give up! So I think I shall remain true to them, because they tried. Though I'm still rather fond of the Cubs.
Annoying Correction: My oh so smart boyfriend just reminded me that it's only a grand slam if the bases are loaded (remember when I said he knew all the tiny little annoying things? okay, I didn't say that.. I just alluded). However, this ball was hit so hard, and so far, I still think grand slam is an appropriate description. Oh, and we won!

October 14, 2005

Crazy Elevator Man

I didn't know what to post today, so I went through the pictures I have on my computer, looking for inspiration. I found some.

It was Valentine's Day, 2004. I was on a class trip to Chicago for the weekend. Who plans class trips to Chicago in February? We froze our asses off.

On the itinerary was a trip to the Fine Arts Buildings. It's a grand ol' building, complete with original Otis Elevators. The kind a bellman has to man, because the levers have to be pulled every time to start and stop it. This was the bellman.

As I recall, tRJ and I were lagging behind, and so had to take the elevator up alone. Thus, I had noticed this guy when the rest of the class went up. I was prepared. As the doors opened, the camera clicked! I was berated.. and I'm not sure it was in English.

*sigh* I love my memories. This picture always makes me smile.

October 13, 2005

An Old Promise

A long time ago, I promised to post DS's favorite picture of me. However, at the time, I was having major problems with my scanner. Today, I fixed it. So without further adieu, I present me, around age 2 1/2.
Note: I just spent about 5 min looking for the original post in which I promised this picture. I failed. You get it anyway.

October 11, 2005


Do you ever have those little epiphanies over things that you should have known years ago, and so instead of making you feel smart, you feel dumber for figuring it out? I do that. Like just now, when I made a conscious connection between the game uno, and the Spanish word for one. I swear my IQ is above average, though you can't tell sometimes.

Knife of Dreams

I got an e-mail today from Barnes and Noble, who are so kind as to keep me updated on my favorite authors. This is not entirely true. I just have them keep me updated on authors who are writing series that I'm in the middle of reading.

I'm the kind of person that doesn't like to finish reading something. I love being immersed in the world of the book, and it's always a little disappointing to know that you can't return without starting over. This is one of the reasons I'm partial to books that come in series. This is also why I tend to slack about reading the last one. This way, I know that there is still book left to read.

I did this very thing regarding the Wheel of Time series. A friend in undergrad, whom I've lost touch with, got me hooked on them. She was in the process of replacing all her paperbacks with hardbacks, and I was the lucky recipient of said paperbacks. Speaking of which, I too like to have all my books one way or another, I don't like mixing them. This means someone can have my paperbacks too one day... The whole time I've been reading these books, which has been spread over the last 5 years, I've been told it will be a 10 book series. Thus, when I bought book 10, I didn't read it. Nor did I read the prequel that came out sometime after that.

So imagine my surprise when a couple of months ago, B&N gave me the heads up on the upcoming release of Book 11. BOOK 11 !?! What the heck happened there?? Bobi was kind enough to explain that no, it's not 10 books anymore, it's more like 13. 13!!! This is a dream come true. To think for a year that this was the end, only to be blessed with not 1, but 3 more books.

Today, the book came out. I'm still frantically reading 10, but I bought 11 today anyway. Little things make like wonderful.

October 10, 2005

I'm home

Why is that a "vacation" makes you feel like you need a vacation? All I want is to lie around the house today, drinking hot chocolate and watching pbs or something. But no, I have to go to work. At least I don't close with idiot girl tonight. Hell, for all I know, they took my advice and fired her while I was gone. But then, that would make my job pretty much perfect, and we all know no job can be that.

October 09, 2005

I knew it.

I hate you so bad
you are the "I hate you so bad" happy
bunny. You hate everyone and eveything and your
not ashamed of it.

which happy bunny are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Trip to Kentucky, Day 2

Today I slept in until 11. It was great.

My mom and I lounged around until mid afternoon. Then we gussied up (ie. showered and put on clean clothes) and went to the new Kohl's that opened in town. I came away with dish clothes, because I'm so hip like that. A set for Halloween that are green, with tombstones and say "halloween rocks" and a set for Thanksgiving, orange and white with a piece of pumpkin pie that say "all in favor say pie". I'm a sucker for decorating.

After Kohl's, we decided to hit Fayette Mall. I'd noticed in the paper that they had recently expanded, and now claim to be the largest mall in Kentucky. So we went to check it out, and I think they're lying. Both the Oxmoor Mall, in Louisville, and the Florence Mall seem bigger. Most of the new stores weren't open either. It was pretty lame. I've made it a habit to avoid malls except for maybe twice a year, and every time I go, I'm reminded why I avoided them in the first place. Way too many people. Way too many stupid people. *shudders*

On the way home, we stopped at the Plum Tree, a local Chinese restaurant, for some take out. I think I could live on steamed rice. We watched Monster-in-Law over dinner, which was very funny. I have to admit, I'm a sucker for Jennifer Lopez movies. Though I'm a staunch avoider of Jennifer Lopez music. Mock me if you will, I don't care.

People magazine came today. That thing they're calling a cottage that Prince William owns?? That is NOT a cottage. But I'd live in it any day.

Now I'm just hoping DS is successful in motivating the crew to pack up and leave at a decent hour, as I would prefer to avoid a repeat of Thursday. I miss my bed :)

October 07, 2005

Trip to Kentucky, Day 1

Well, this trip got off to a rough start. I hate being at the mercy of other people's schedules. Our original departure time of 4pm was delayed until some time after 5 as everyone along the way made us a little bit later. Then, a trip that should only take between 8 and 9 hours became 10. I didn't get to my mom's until 3am, only to get up again at 8am for my day out at Huber's. The night was only slightly saved by being able to sleep with my Babba.

However, I'm happy to say that today was redeeming. I was picked up at 9am by my friend and her baby, Nick. He was very excited, and kept talking about farms and goats. Of course, there are a lot of farms in Kentucky, so he spent a lot of time pointing out the window and saying, "Farm?" And we would say, "Yes, that's a farm, but we're not there yet."

The day was a little colder than we expected, which was probably due to the slight mist all morning. We braved it in style though. The first thing we did upon arrival was catch the wagon ride to the pumpkin patch. This elicited many "oooh"s from Nick. Despite repeated requests that he say out of the mud and water puddles, he managed to have his shoes completely soaked in no time.

He is at that age where he likes to repeat things. As he ran around the pumpkin patch, he found a pumpkin had been squished. "Look!" "Yes, that one's busted." He spent the rest of our pumpkin hunt finding broke ones and saying "That one's busted" in that can't-quite-say-complicated-words kind of way. C and I kept looking for pumpkins small enough for Nick to carry, which usually meant they were green. When he realized we were pointing out green ones, he helped with that too, though he never wanted any of them. He left the patch happy to have just pointed out the ones that were busted or green or both.

C and I paid for our pumpkins, stowed them in the car, bought tiny pumpkins and stowed those, and then decided it was time for homemade cheese and ice cream. Nick had Nerds. We then took him to feed the fish (very large koi) while I ate my ice cream. He liked this very much. There were a few swan swimming around as well, and he kept yelling through the deck railing, "Come here duckies! I want to feed you!" There were ducks, elsewhere. They were pretty brave, and actually took the feed straight out of my hand. Nick found this very funny. C took that picture, so sorry, I don't have it.

When we ran out of quarters, and decided to do something else (we were hoping for the wine tasting), Nick threw a fit. He kept thinking we were leaving everytime we moved on to a new activity. So we skipped the wine tasting and went to the petting zoo. He was very excited by the goats, and kept asking for more quarters. Luckily, kids drop things, and we found plenty of feed on the ground. Goats are of course very rude, and fought each other for our attention. But then, the llamas, deer, and bunnies all did the same thing.

It wasn't long before Nick grew tired of all this excitement. Though he couldn't leave without making a statement. He chose to cage himself, and I suspect he expected us to feed him. He found this quite funny. Actually, now that I think about it, a little too funny, as I would expect this level of humor to be beyond his grasp at that age.

Midday crankiness set in at this point, and we decided to split and let the car ride lull him to sleep. I then went to dinner at Ruby Tuesday's with my mom and step-dad, where I embarrassed her royally by laughing about the little booger on her face left there by a sneeze.

The rest of the day was spent on the computer and watching tv (I've missed having more than 4 channels). I enjoyed a toga party over at Mo's. I was convinced by my brother to accompany him to Wal-mart, as he hates to shop alone. This provided an amusing conversation:

Brother: Look how he's tailing him. I think he's following him.

Me: You think he's going to pull him over?

Brother: Yup. Watch.

Me: Oh! Nope! Look, he pulled into Cracker Barrel.

Brother: Since when does Cracker Barrel sell donuts?

Well, I was amused at any rate.

We are now enjoying freshly baked cookies, the company of babba and hope, and the ease of multiple computers. It's been a good day.

October 06, 2005

Finding Peace

The past couple of weeks have been really rough, but tonight, I'm finding peace.

Not that I've ever forgotten, but sometimes, I remember how much I love DS. It just wells up inside of me, like I'm going to burst. When it happens, I just want to squeeze him, smell him, rub his spikey hair. Just be near. My skin tingles like our auras are tickling each other. The feeling is so strong that all I can do with it is laugh, similar to the way sometimes bad things well up in you and you just have to scream.

It's strange how even though we live together, I rarely see him. I've been closing a lot at work, so that I'm still asleep when he goes to work, and he gives me just enough time to tell him how my day went before he crashes when I get home. All together, I'd say we're averaging about 15 min a day in each other's presence. The rest of the time we're home together, he's like this:Look at him, sleeping away. Isn't he precious? I get this feeling a lot when he's sleeping, and I run into our room and just squeeze him. Most of the time, he grunts a little and falls back asleep, not even realizing the next day that I woke him, if even slightly.

Today he stayed up until 11. That's pretty rare for him. He's an early riser. So I curled up with him until he was sleeping. Somehow, just doing something like that calms me down. He always manages to bring me back to my center, even when he's not trying.

He likes to make me CD's. I'm listening to my latest, "Sleep Goblin V.3: Instrumental." When I was in middle/high school, I use to fall asleep to my softer cd's. College got me out of the habit, since my roommates were usually against the idea. DS does it every night though, and I like it. This CD is kinda like a sleep CD. It's very calming, and I think about how much he loves me every time I listen to it. I always say.. It's the little things...

On top of all of these mushy feelings, the rain came back. The is bringing back temperatures I can tolerate. I just wasn't built for heat and humidity. It's a nice hard rain too. I love the sound of rain, so soothing.

On that note, because I'm sure most of you are ready to say "get a room" or some other goofy comment, I shall do just that. I'm going to lie down, read Book 10 of the Wheel of Time series, listen to the rain, and be close to the love of my life.

PS: Would someone tell me how to do an audio post?

October 05, 2005

Memories and Anticipations


As you have probably gathered, Phineas 2 decided he didn't like living in this harsh world any longer. DS and I had been expecting this actually. About four days before, I came home from work to find him sleeping in his fake plant. I kept it in there because other things moving around can freak betas out, and I wanted him to have a place he could "hide" from us. However, he was sleeping too high, and his nose was out of the water. I thought he was dead, and freaked out. DS poked him, and then Phineas freaked out. He wasn't dead after all. I still don't know if it was a lung problem from being out of the water, or shock from getting poked, but he was acting very strangely the last four days of his life. He kept trying to get back on top of the plant, so we removed it for his safety. DS decided he needed clean water, so we cleaned his bowl. I took this picture of his "temporary holding tank", because it was funny to me at the time.
The clean tank only slightly calmed him. He continued to almost convulse around the fish bowl, and swam frantically. We chose to stay away and give him darkness to calm him down and hoped for the best. Our hopes were lifted when we noticed that he had returned to enthusiatically going for his food as soon as we put in the bowl, instead of waiting until we were gone. But it was a false hope, as the very next day brought the sad news.

We had even taken extra precautions with this one, after the short life of the first one. We bought a small heater, and a tank thermometer, in case an extreme water temperature had been the demise of PH1. We got tips from an experienced beta owner friend on the best way to ease the transition between store and house. There have always been fish in my house. Well, in my mom's house. I think I'm going to take a break from fish for a while....


Tomorrow, DS, Jesse, and some people you don't know are leaving on a trip to Kentucky. The boys (and also a couple of girls, now that I think about it, though I generally group KC in with the boys for some reason..) are heading to the Red River Gorge. It's a most beautiful state park about an hour or so east of where my mom lives. I grew up hiking in the forests, and playing on Natural Bridge. All the sandstone makes for good climbing though, which is why they're going. I'm getting dropped off at my mom's, because I know she misses me. I don't think she's ever gone this long without seeing me before. When I lived 30 min away, she'd call me whining if I hadn't stopped by in the last week. So a visit she shall have.

You should all know by now that I'm eagerly anticipating the reunion between me and my dog. I actually don't have a lot of pictures of her full grown, so I'll make sure to get some while I'm there. For now, I give you another puppy picture.
There she is, with Jackson, my mom's "third child". She's acutally slightly taller than him now. He's a beagle or foxhound mix, we're not really sure which. He's a little too tall to be a beagle. Her other two dogs are full blooded basset hounds. One is very stupid and annoying, the other is an angel.

My plans were originally to spend Friday with my friends, since my mom will be at work, and then Saturday with my mom. However, most of my friends bailed on me. Lame! So it will just be me, CO, and her baby, Nick. We're going to Huber's for pumpkin picking and fresh apple cider and apple butter. Homemade ice cream, cheese, wine... oooh, I can't wait!

To be sure, taking a three year old (nearly) to such a place for the first time will be exciting. Expect pictures to follow!

October 04, 2005

Bobi Tagged Me

First of all.. this is the third post I've had to do just for you Bobi. Keep it up, and you'll have me doing more things than I have DS do, and you don't pay me back the way I do him. So stop it already!

Secondly, the tag.

10 Things I'd Like To See Come Back:

1. Phineas 1, or Phineas 2 (who was found dead today). Either one would be fine.

2. The burner cover that I killed this morning when I turned on the wrong burner by mistake.

3. My gumption to get things done (thesis anyone?).

4. Knights.

5. Chick-a-sticks

6. Victorian life

7. Women dressing up whenever they go out in public

8. Leisure time.

9. Life without the knowledge of cancer.

10. Having a cat in the house.

Okay, I'm supposed to tag people now. Except no one I tagged before actually did it. So I'll just pick Harry Yak and Moral Turpitude and see what happens.

October 03, 2005

A Crappy Day

I'm not sure what the heck Bobi was talking about in the comments of the last post, but I'll assume it means he wants an update.

I have tendonitis in both of my wrists. I have since I was a freshman in high school, where a year of typing class and learning gymnastics for cheerleading were more than they could handle. Everyday symptoms include random popping and trouble picking up a full gallon of milk. However, over exerting them leads to some real pain, which is currently what I'm suffering from. At work, I have to lift big mirrors and art pieces all the time. DS is also getting me to climb a lot. My wrists are protesting. To make it worse, I only have one wrist brace, which means I have to alternate which wrist will feel relief at work. I'm hoping that when I go home this weekend, I'll find my set at Mom's house. Building cars at Toyota while I lived there was definitely a cause for sleeping in braces.

Also, I think I'm getting arthiritis... my fingers have been stiff for days. Maybe it's just my wrists' fault? I don't know, but it sucks.

And then there was this morning, when I got stuck in a repeating dream that revolved around the sudden death of my mother. I do not feel good today. I don't want to go to work. I don't want to finish making all this stupid jewelry. I'm mad that I can't get the Special Edition Word Whomp badge on pogo. I'm dumb with words.

I think I need a hot bath. I don't have any comfort food here... so I'll pull a Monkey and say, Please send comfort food.

October 02, 2005


This is Abby. She's my dog. I say she's "my" dog, but she lives in Kentucky at my mom's house. With my mom's 3 other dogs. My mom likes to save animals. Sometimes we call her Abba Babba. Which got morphed into Babbida somewhere along the way.

Abby is some kind of whippet mix, which are pretty much smaller versions of Greyhounds. This means that she's very lean, very hyper, can jump extremely high, and has a very high-pitched bark. She looks like she has a trampoline behind the front door when we come home. You can just see her head bouncing up and down.. over and over.. It also means that she can run like the dickens, as DS can attest. Go ahead, ask him about it sometime. It's one of his favorite memories...

This is one of my favorite pictures of her. When we got her, she was a wee little puppy, smaller than even this (she's carrying around an average sized rope tug). My step-dad decided to save her from the pound after seeing her picture online. She was the runt. We kept her in a dog cage at night until she was potty trained. However, when I would be home on the weekends from college, I wanted to spend as much time with her as I could. While she was too small to jump off my bed, I had her sleep with me. When she had to use the bathroom, she would wake me up by crawling up to my face and sticking her tiny little tongue up my nose. She still has a taste for nose snot, but her tongue is too big to fit in your nose now. Not that she doesn't try.

This weird obsession she has with licking noses extends to other things. I think she has a mouth fetish. Whenever you come home, she shows her love by biting your hand. It only hurts because she's also jumping estactically at the time. She doesn't really bite down, she just likes having your body shoved in her mouth. She's a weird dog.

On Thursday, DS and his climbing gang are taking a trip to Red River Gorge. They're going to drop me off at my mom's, and I'm going to get some doggy lovin.