Archive | July, 2010

Wikiwiki….WikiHow!

28 Jul

igoogle, anyone? I’m a fan. It has all these fun gadgets and tabs and links that it could keep me entertained for the entire day. Sometimes, on really slow work days, it does. I have several favorites:

  1. I can quickly see my new emails without actually having to log onto my email account.
  2. It has the newest and most read stories on people.com. I love celebrity gossip. Love it. I know, I know, I should be more cerebral than that, but you know what? Sometimes I want to read about Jessica Simpson’s new ex-football player boyfriend and look at pictures of the Jolie-Pitt clan.
  3. Wikihow. Also known as “How to of the Day”. This is misleading, as they post at least 2 how-tos each day. And it’s awesome. And at times, hilarious.

Some hilarious examples: Care for a Hedgehog with Wobbly Hedgehog Syndrome, Tactfully Ask Emotional Questions, or Hunt for Wild Ginseng.

But other times, it’s totally stuff I want to know. Today’s, for example: Make Wood Floor Polish (Beeswax and Essential Oils). I’m absolutely going to do that when our floor needs to be polished. And no, I’m not joking.

Or this one: How to Find Uses for Fabric Scraps (with video) – wikiHow. Yes, I’m going to do that! Some of it. Probably not the animal pillow, but I do have a 3 year old niece, so you never know.

wikiHow - The How-to Manual That You Can Edit

the how to manual that you can edit

Just a little taste

25 Jul

Of what’s blooming in my garden right now.

I’d just like to take this moment to thank Betty Mae for her years and years of hard work on my garden. She lived in our house for 40 yearS (!!!), and while she hadn’t physically been able to work on her garden in the last couple years at the house, there are still so many beautiful things left over. It’s safe to say that there will be lilies blooming throughout the summer, and numerous other beautiful things. And there are hostas EVERYWHERE! And peonies, and a bunch of other stuff that I have no idea what it is, but it’s pretty. Once this summer is over and I’ll know exactly what I do and don’t have to work with, I’m going to come up with a plan to fill in some of the holes that have been left by a couple years of non-care. I’m also learning where not to plant vegetables, and what vegetables are working (tomatoes and beans are a go, radish and lettuce not so much).

I’m kinda in love with my garden…

Failure #2

21 Jul

Or, maybe instead of failures, I should call them experiments with unplanned results. Regardless, it didn’t go the way I wanted it to yesterday.

So, as anyone with a drain knows, they clog sometimes. Especially when the other person who uses the showers clips his toenails and fingernails (GROSS!!!!!!!!) in the tub. So gross, bleh, disgusting. Trusty readers, you might have the urge to point the finger at me because of my flowing reddish tendrils, but, ahem, I use a plugger thingy that keeps the hair from going down the drain. So, I blame the toenails, mostly so he doesn’t do it anymore. And he promised he won’t.

At this juncture, I welcome said shower-sharer to write about something I do that grosses him out in the comments, as I undoubtedly do. And don’t want him to feel picked on. Because he knows where I sleep at night.

So, back to the clog. I was thinking, as I was formulating my plan to de-clog the clog, how a person will die, DIE, if they ingest the fabulously fast-working concoctions like Drano. And then, I started thinking about where the toxins go to after they fix the clog in the drain. My best guess? The Mississippi River, which flows less than a mile away from our lovely abode. And then I thought about the fish, and the ducks, and the people that still swim in that river. And then I started picturing all the sad animals that have been victims of the oil spill in the Gulf. And I decided to do what my mother used to always do when we had a clogged drain at home growing up.

I got out my baking soda and vinegar—you know, that stuff you use to make cookies and salad dressing—and made a volcano of fizzing goodness in the tub. If it fizzes, it’s working. Right? Afterwards, I started up my kettle and poured bowling water down the drain. I saw some brown disgusting goodness come up, and I thought, YES! I’m doing good things! So, just for the hell of it, I did it again. And even more brown crap came up! SWEET!

I figured the drain would be tested later that night by shower-sharer when he got home from the gym. And I was right…but…I think I made the clog even worse instead of fixing it. My best guess is that I just moved it farther down the pipes. It was a sad evening for me. So I ate a Chipotle burrito.

This post serves several reasons. 1. It’s a project, and this blog was formulated to detail my projects, successful or not. And 2. It’s descriptive of how I try to live my life. Which is to have the least negative effect possible on our dear little planet’s environment as I can. I know people point to cow farts as the real reason the ozone layer is getting thinner and holey (but it’s coming back! We’re saved!!), but, you know what? In my opinion, that’s a load of cow excrement.

It’s easier to live your life not caring so much about the environment, by using Drano whenever you have a clogged drain, or just throwing everything in the trash instead of sorting the recyclables. I get pretty mad at people sometimes who act as though the Earth revolves around them (the SUN, it revolves around the SUN, dammit!!) and do things like throw their cigarettes out the window of their cars and print every email they get at work. And little things like that add up. I’m trying to deduct them instead.

Update!

It did work! I guess it took a couple showers to break that clog up, but when I took a shower this morning, miraculously, there was no slowness, no back-up, nothing! Huzzah! However, I’m still taking Terri’s advice and getting that thing at Target.

Things are just…different

18 Jul

In case you’re wondering, yes, I am a fan of ellipses and you will be seeing them often on this blog. I apologize if that’s annoying, but I find them to be quite useful to convey my tone. However, I do plan on leaving emoticons out of this.

Tomorrow is my half birthday (no I do not celebrate that, but yes, I used to), and I’ve decided to do some reflecting. Over the last year, I have noticed that I do things differently, live my life in a slightly new way. I don’t stay out late Thursday through Saturday night consecutively anymore, don’t go salsa dancing ever, I don’t drink more than two drinks in one night, and I sleep eight hours every night. And when I stray from this path, my body punishes me for it.

Like this weekend. I went out with friends on Friday night and had a fabulous time (I should’ve taken video…there are no words to explain some of the people we met), and then went from a late brunch with my parents, Chris, and his mom. And because I couldn’t just sleep in and do nothing the next day, that night I had to stay home because I had a headache, was sweating all over, and couldn’t sit up straight. I weeded my garden for half an hour and thought I was going to pass out.

So, is this what I have to look forward to in the coming decades? Or do I have lupus? I think I have lupus. A 26-year-old should be able to stay out until 2 and be able to function the next day, right?

Things I appreciate that I feel aren’t appreciated enough, part 1

14 Jul

1. Veronica Mars. How could that show have only lasted three seasons?

2. Tights. You can get them in any color, in different patterns, different thickness, and they don’t let in drafts like pants do in negative temperatures (I tell myself they keep me from getting frost bitten). I wear them every day in the winter. I think people think I’m strange for that.

3. English Breakfast tea. It should be everyone’s #1 drink in the morning.

4. My boyfriend’s eyebrows. Just check out that arch.

5. Diet Coke. Oh, I know how popular it is. But every time I hear someone open a can of pop (that particular click-click-pop is so much more gratifying than opening a bottle), my taste buds immediately wake up in the hope that a Diet Coke was just opened for me. It’s an addiction I fight multiple times a day. (You can see by the length of this post just how much Diet Coke means to me; I’m completely serious about my love for this beverage)

6. Rick Steve’s Europe. Yeah, he’s a little creepy sometimes (did you see Istanbul when he was in the Turkish bath?), but he always makes me want to go to there.

To be continued…

Epic fail…of minimal porportions

13 Jul

Chris’ mom gave him a grill for his birthday last month, and it took us a couple weeks to get around to using it. We plotted what amazing feats of fire and meat were in our future, with visions of beef and chicken dancing in our heads.

For our first grilled feast, we chose kabobs: chicken, sweet onions and red potatoes from the St. Paul Farmers’ Market, green peppers. How could that go wrong, right?

Moments before we were to start up our experiment, we both realized….we didn’t know anything, and I mean not one thing, about grilling. So we went to google, because google is an all-knowing entity that only speaks capital T Truth.

And it took us over an hour to cook kabobs. And it probably should’ve only taken us, I don’t know, 15 minutes?

Afterwards, we researched and read and studied up on grilling…and we still couldn’t figure out just what we did wrong. We lit the charcoals, made sure they were grey all over, used the correct amount for how much food we were grilling, had all the right supplies. So, what the hell could we have done wrong?????

This weekend, after my grill-master father made us the most delicious, gourmet steaks on his itty-bitty Weber (which is his preferred method), we asked for some advice. His first question:

“Did you open the vent?”

Oh…

The @#$% deer ate my beans…

9 Jul

For my first garden this summer (first, as in, first ever on my own, not just the little random lot with my Burpee children’s surprise pack in my parents’ lawn), the only plant I had total, complete hope for were my green beans. When the radish didn’t take root, I brushed my shoulders off and said, “eh”. When the sunflowers sprouted and then mysteriously disappeared, I figured I needed to plant them in a sunnier spot, not knowing when I put the seeds in that the tree next to it had gigantour leaves. But the beans, the beans would grow.

And grow, they did. I planted gourmet green and purple beans, and when I saw the sprouts less than a week after the seeds were in the ground, I literally squealed with giddiness. My beans wouldn’t fail me.

The beans didn’t fail me: the deer turned against me. Early in the summer, when I was replanting Hydrangea on our tree line, I spoke to three of the local deer, explaining to them that while I appreciated them, they were not to come into our yard and especially not into my garden. I thought we had an understanding.

It had been about a month and a half since that talk, and there was not one sign of them in my garden…until I left for work one morning and saw this:

goodbye beautiful bean buds....