But who’s counting

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In preparation for our upcoming vacation Roland and I worked the puppy over last night. It was about time for an expression (this link leads to Too Much Information for a lot of people, think twice before clicking) and a bath. All went well and we ended up with the usual drowned rat:

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Somehow I managed to catch him mid-lick. Who could resist such piteousness? Now in a couple of days I can anoint him with Frontline. That way he will be all ready to face the kennel, clean and protected. I had a dream the other night that he had a tick on his right front leg. It was a crazy real dream. In the dream I woke up in bed and remembered that I had seen a tick on him the previous evening and for some unknown reason didn’t do anything about it. Sometime during this dream I woke up and was convinced that he really did have a tick on this right front leg. Luckily (for once) my semi-conscious self decided that there wasn’t anything I could do about it at 3 in the morning anyway so I decided to fix it in the morning. I fell back asleep planning how to remove the tick. Very weird.

I also finished my latest craft project. I can’t post pictures of it at this time as it is a Christmas present, but it turned out pretty killer and I took some pictures to maybe post at a later date. It took me a while to work it out and I’m proud of the finished product.

Only 3 days ’til Disney!

That hardly seems fair.

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Roland and I ended up getting a fake tree this year. It was a hard decision for me, but the benefits of not having to get it to stand up and watering it and the needles everywhere outweighed the no fresh pine scent and it’s-a-real-tree-itude. We ended up also having to buy some new lights as the old ones seemed to have some internal damage from the move (there isn’t much sadder than a string of lights that doesn’t light). Then we set up the tree in our living room. This was also a little weird for me as I am usually a proponent of waiting until a little closer to Christmas. However, this year I was hoping that having the tree up early would help me to feel the season a bit. The weather being so warm is still totally messing with my time sense. Here are a couple of pictures of what our tree looks like all gussied up:

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I also took this one, which turned out pretty trippy:

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But the universe wasn’t ready to let me just be happy with that, oh no! Revenge of the it-apparently-doesn’t-matter-if-it’s-a-fake-tree!

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Wait a minute. One of the reasons explicitly stated during the convince Susan to get a fake tree speech was that fake trees do not shed needles everywhere. That hardly seems fair.

To brine…

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Divine!

This year Roland and I were alone for Thanksgiving and worked together to create a fabulous feast. He decided to follow AB’s advice and brine the turkey. The results, juicerific! This is definitely the way to go. This brine was stock based and Roland could tell you more about it, but it made the turkey very moist and tasty. I made the stuffing and did all the touching-of-the-gibblets. Apparently gibblets give Roland the jibblies, he doesn’t want his food to look that organ like, but they are an important part of my mom’s stuffing. We also had squash, mashed potatoes, rolls, and cranberry-orange relish. This was the first time I’ve made cranberry-orange relish in a food processor, rather than a meat grinder, but it seemed to go just fine. Oh yeah, we also had some pumpkin pie for dessert. It was a mighty fine meal and we still have a lot left. Since we are leaving to meet Roland’s parents soon we froze one of the breasts, the wings, and one of the legs and thighs. We put the rest in the refrigerator and have been eating it on sandwiches…mmmm….cold turkey sandwiches.

Jibblies

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I was walking the dog this afternoon and it was like The Birds. There were a huge number of birds on the ground looking for food, and in the trees, and on the garbage bins, everywhere. What made it creepy-like was that they stayed where they were until we were very close and then all took off together in a sort of moving carpet of feathers. Then they only went into the trees above and around us making us walk through a tunnel of cawing beady-eyed-ness. Turns out Bleys isn’t feeling very well today either. While out on our walk this morning he yakked up some bile on the sidewalk and after dinner this evening we hurled that back up on the kitchen floor. I hope he is feeling better soon.

Bad news: Jason isn’t coming to visit in December. Bummer, but understandable. His family is having some holiday festivities when he was planning on visiting. Maybe he will be able to come in early January or soon thereafter. I hope so, I miss seeing people that I know. If not maybe I can weasel another trip to Breckenridge or Vegas out it. I might even let Roland come along too (gotcha there didn’t I honey). IPublish‘ve been thinking I would like to visit Vegas again. I would like to go to a Cirque du Soleil show and get some really good food. I would like to go to the Star Trek Experience before it goes away and maybe get a crazy smoking drink. Turns out if I had hit up V she probably would have gone with me, who knew? I had such a great time with the girls. I might also want to see some show that is quintessentially Vegas too, with giant hats that look like they might make the dancers fall over. Then I think it would be awesome to go back to Colorado for some skiing. I just want to go on a permanent vacation all over the place.

Latest crazy, wish-I-was-rich idea: Open a dive shop with Jason here.

Great news: it is supposed to get “cool” here – it might even get below 70 degrees!

The sound of compromise

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I think we are going to break down and buy a fake Christmas tree. I’m usually pretty opposed to the fake tree route, partly because it’s fake and partly because you have to store it the rest of the year. However, I’m not sure of buying a real tree down here and whatever they have down here probably won’t compare to what is available back in Michigan (especially for freshness). Being a huge grower of trees Michigan has some nice choices. We went to Target to look at trees and a lot of them look really really fake. There was one tree they called cashmere or something on which they had frayed the ends of each ‘needle.’ It was totally hideous. The other one I hated looked nice except they had glued on glittery goop to the ends of certain branches’ needles, the effect was… trashy. I’m trying to look on the bright side, no getting it to stand up in the stupid tree stand (plus we got rid of our tree-stand rather than move it), no needles to vacuum up, possibly pre-lit (possibly not – how the tree looks is more important to me than whether it has lights). I’m thinking we should decide soon before the stores don’t have a good selection.

Cruncha-cruncha

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Once again, my sistrah is the best, ever! I came home today to another package. All excited like a little kid I ran inside to open it. It was very light and I did shake it. It sounded like it had some packing peanuts in it, but not enough fill the box, because they did shake around in there. I tore off the brown paper (did I mention how much fun that is) and it was a shoe box. Now last time she sent me a package it was also in a shoe box, but then it was one of Karl’s shoe boxes so it was ba-giant. This one was an Anne sized shoe box. I popped it open and…

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it was full of colorful leaves with a cute little note in which she even uses nerdly terms like deciduous. It was a great little present and was totally made me want to strew them around the apartment. I’m sure Anne and Karl have more than enough to go around. It did make me a little homesick, but overall made me quite happy.

Look at the plummage!

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Any opinions about this…

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It is not usually the sort of thing I like but I think I do. The skirt is a peacock feather-esque pattern with a gold sparkle in it. I even like the gold shoes (I know bizarre). If I was to make the skirt I would have to buy a top somewhere, as it wasn’t a pattern like the skirt, and plead with my sister to see if she would make the shrug if I bought the yarn. I kind of wish the top was a pattern as well because I like the whole outfit and usually have little to no luck in finding something that is like something I saw in a magazine. But I’m just not totally convinced I like it, it seems more stylish in the whats-hot-this-season way than I usually manage. I might not be able to pull like something like that off. What do you ya’ll think?

Robots

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The mystery of it all. If you scrolly-scrolly down to the bottom of my page you may notice that I have a counter. Normal, expected even. But I also have a site meter (insert canned applause, or perhaps applesauce as that suddenly sounds really good – sorry haven’t had lunch yet). Anyway, I love this little thing. If you don’t have any idea what I’m on about, site meter is a free website sign-up thing where they track how many people come to your site and a little bit about them. Like how they got to your site (what page they were on that linked to my page – usually LoveFeast, or Librarianne as their blogs generate a lot more traffic than mine), how long they stayed (usually 2 minutes or so), and a general location.

It’s that last on that is some fun, partly because they have a feature that will plot those locations as a little dot on a world map and partly because it’s just interesting to see where traffic on my site it coming from. Sometimes I can guess who is behind the visit, like when it is Pompano Beach – that is gonna be Roland, or Mt. Pleasant – that is likely to be Anne or Karl, or Kalamazoo – probably Jason or maybe Shannon. But sometimes it is a mystery, like Rutledge, Tennessee. I don’t think I know anyone in Tennessee, so who are they and what do they think of my blathering. I’ll never know. And Muskegon, sometimes people from Muskegon stop by, could that be someone I know? I do know few people over yonder, but they don’t leave comments so again, I’ll never know. And sometimes I figure out the mystery like Goshen, NY – oh wait, Henry is visiting near there for work.

That got me thinking about people I know from Muskegon, how are they doing, what are they doing. Like is Lisa as bubbly as ever and going to see Harry Potter as soon as possible? Is Kate as goofy and fun to be around? Does Kelli still have her finger on the pulse of student gossip? Is Susan doing all right? That last one stings a bit, I miss her.

I also wonder about some of the students I had. What they are planning, what college they are going to, what jobs they have gotten. It would be interesting to know what they are up to. I think a lot about the last year when I had an honors class. They were a blast to teach, I just hope I did them justice. Anyway, time for the afternoon constitutional…and maybe some applesauce.

What’s up with that?

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I woke up with a crazy feeling arm. I must of slept on it in a very bizarre fashion. All day I’ve been moving it in various ways trying to get it get back into feeling right. Here is where you imagine me running around Target gently windmilling my arm around, pushing and pulling it all while grimacing and generally looking like a complete weirdo. But it was all to no avail. It still feels manky. Maybe another night and I will sleep on it wrong in a new and different way.

Roland has been working a super lot (which is nothing like Big Lots) this week due to conferences with students. The idea was to have class Monday and then they don’t have class for the rest of the week to make room for conferences. But, for some reason I haven’t quite figured out he scheduled all of them for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I think he actually had one scheduled for Thursday, but some other dude changed a class time and he had to change that one to super late today. Seems like making life really hard for yourself, but maybe he really doesn’t want to go in tomorrow. Anyway, that means he’s not coming home until like 8:00 or 8:30, possibly even 9:00.

So the point is, we are eating late (understatement, I’m hungry already) and I’m going to make steak. This is an experiment for me as Roland is usually the steak maker of the house. I’m more of a baker anyway. But I’m going out on a limb for some filet. I found a recipe that I hope will work, but I’m a little apprehensive and hope it will turn out. I hate to ruin a perfectly good piece of steak…mmmmm steak. I like mine medium rare, while Roland is more of a medium well guy. To me, if it’s not bloody it’s burned. Anyway, I will have to wait for a few more hours to find out if I can turn out the chefery.

In happy news, Harry Potter is out in two days!!! I think they are starting to show it at midnight tomorrow. How exciting, except that we still haven’t found a plush movie theater like Celebration. I’m particularly interested to see how they do the underwater stuff. I heard that because they are minors they could only shoot in teeny tiny segments while telling the actors to try to look like they can breathe underwater. Also exciting, The Lion the Witch, and the Wardrobe. That should be sweet as well. Anyway, I’m getting antsy so I will check back in later.

8 to 5

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If you read (Lovefeast you read about our dance class and step size. I learned a long time ago about adjusting my step size, forward or backward. I was a band geek and like any self respecting band geek, participated in marching band. If you have ever marched you quickly discover that when going backward a person naturally takes small steps. In order to get the correct distance going backward one has to stretch a bit. So, having a tall partner and knowing that while he was taking his ba-giant steps forward I was going backward, I naturally adjusted my step size toward the long size. When I’m going forward I also automatically adjust my step size smaller because a lot of people don’t realize that they are taking teeny tiny steps backward.

Apparently Pointy-Toe-Shoe-Lady was not aware of step size. She was taking steps backward of about 3″. Luckily we were right next to her and heard the instructor tell her partner, with pretty much a straight face, that if she doesn’t take large steps backward to just step on her. It was awesome, and so practical.

I also discovered one problem that I have. Naturally I have a slight out-turn of my feet. So when dancing the tango and waltz where the gentleman’s foot is supposed to step between the ladies it increases the chances of me getting stepped on through no fault of the alleged gentleman. I wonder if I can adjust that?

Anyway, does anyone else out there do this dancing thing or want to? Do you actually go out and dance? How does that work? Do you go to lessons? What’s the scoop?