Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Listography


  • Joined a girl named Nancy in her crime-fighting adventures and almost finished the challenge.
  • I went back to school--style school-- and made lots of things
  • More snow than I've ever seen in my entire life, and I loved it!
  • Worked (a lot).
  • Indulged my senses.
  • Spent some quality time with the best family a girl could ask for. They make excellent co-conspirators.
  • Created memories with people who will put up with me (aka friends).
  • A whole year without (in-person) girl talk and silliness with this girl.
I've been blessed with a good year. Here's to 2011. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Meet Suzy


Evidently, this is the first doll* I ever owned. Considering I got her in 1976, she looks pretty good (don't mind the missing finger) for a gal her age. I don't remember much about her other than she was a favorite. Anyway, my mom and I attempted** to clean out a box of my old stuff while I was home, and it was decided that Suzy was coming home with me.

* A little internet research reveals that she's part of the Fisher Price "My Friend Doll" series. "Audrey" was on sale from 1974-1976. Ha! I scoff at given names and declared her "Suzy".
** Someone had a hard time letting some things go. Hint: it wasn't me.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Honeysuckle 18-2120

I am such a sucker for Pantone's color of the year announcement. To be frank, I find it more exciting and relevant than the Oscar for Best Picture. A couple of weeks ago Pantone revealed honeysuckle as the color for 2011. 

I wouldn't balk at adding a little honeysuckle to my life :-)

**Sadly, all of these images came via Google images with the exception of the first image, which is from the official Pantone site.**

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Line in the sand

Let's talk about guns.

Grandma with a shotgun
photo by Geoffrey Fairchild

To be honest, I don't really know where I stand on the issue. Actually, the problem is that I keep leaping from one side to the other much like Frogger. I think the world would be a better place if no one owned a gun. Perhaps this is a bit cynical, but I just don't think that will realistically ever happen. So, if guns are going to exist, where does that leave me?

When you look up pacifist on the Web, Merriam-Webster tells you that describing yourself or something as pacifist means strongly and actively opposed to conflict and especially war. Wikipedia goes on more of a long-winded tear about the various forms of pacifism and the differing degrees to which people take it. I have always considered myself a pacifist in the sense that I detest violence and am opposed to war and other acts in that vein.

Snapshot: Woman with Shotgun
photo by robot_zombie_monkey

I do believe that, if a genocide is truly happening*, it is up to someone to step in. I also believe in self defense and taking care of my loved ones. Remember Christmas a couple of years ago? What about hunting? I think hunting for food is acceptable, while the killing of another creature for sport is a bit insane.

Why this conversation at this particular time? Because people frighten me, and I need to admit it. The evening news, the morning paper and any number of popular TV shows tell tales hour after hour of the horrific deeds we do to our fellow man. Because I shouldn't be afraid to go to my project site alone on a Sunday and run into two men just hanging out. I shouldn't worry on the evenings when my mom doesn't answer her cell right away that someone has broken into their house and is holding them hostage. I shouldn't have less than six degrees of separation from multiple women who have been raped.

So...sometimes I find myself thinking that one day I might want to own a shotgun, and this, too, scares me.

Carole Lombard: Armed and Dangerous
photo by Michael Donovan

I remember Kasey Wheeless ending his life with a gun in high school and another kid who lost his life when he and his friends were messing around with a gun they thought wasn't loaded. Fear isn't a reason to own a gun. No good can come when arming the paranoid (not that I'm paranoid).

Where do I stand? Maybe I should just stop watching TV and following the news. ;-)

What about you?

*We're not talking hidden weapons of mass destruction here.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A decidedly hectic December

Highlights of the last couple of weeks. December was busy (as it should be) but not enough to stress me out. I took a chill pill early on this month, and it seems to have been the right dosage.

she works hard for her money
workity work

an even better master
a fun little diy to make a vintage View-Master more special

Ravena searching for her tree
helping Ravena pick out her Christmas tree

Steven at Merry...happy..
Steven + cupcakes at Scarlet's play, Merry, Happy...What?

our new pink tree
and enjoying the new pink Christmas tree at my mom's

Thursday, December 09, 2010

What doesn't belong?

Last night I spent an hour and a half in the Bass Pro Shop searching for waterproof boots or waders to encase my large feet. After struggling with more than my fair share of boots, I finally determined that it wasn't the size of my foot that was keeping me from finding something to keep my feet dry in the middle of a river but was instead my extremely high instep.

Photo by Luigi Anzivino

Not to be defeated, I marched over to the waders. As I combed through the display, pulling and stretching as necessary, I wondered if I could indeed pull them off. Before giving it too much more thought, the box was in my hand, and I was dodging holiday shoppers on my way to the fitting room.

wader - clay - mud - 22
Photo by Welliefreak

Well, boys and girls, it was not a pretty site. Do you remember that episode of Friends where Ross wears a pair of new leather pants on a date? That was me in the dressing room. I've never made sausage, but I reckon I now know what it's like to shove sausage into that casing. Clearly, neoprene is not for me.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Christmas in Middleburg

little German tree

We spent Saturday at Christmas in Middleburg (Virginia). The citizens of Middleburg are very into horses and fox hunts. I* spotted the little tree above tucked into the corner of a Christmas shop and was excited to bring it home and add it to my Christmas vignette. The store itself was filled with innumerable Christmas treasures, most of which came from Germany. 

*Technically, Steven found it.

The list

In recent years, my mom has asked for a list of things I might want for Christmas, which is often so hard to do. There's a part of me that still loves the excitement of opening presents and seeing what someone picked out just for you. It's the little kid in me still hoping for my own version of the Red Ryder BB Gun. This little girl is at odds with the person who really wants everyone to embrace mindful spending and keep the focus of this holiday season on togetherness, family and the small joys.

Still...I put together my list of a few things, any of which would make me ecstatic.

Christmas 2010

Not pictured but also on my list of potentials were a fly-fishing rod from LL Bean, lots of tights, and Nancy Drew or graffiti books.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Dirty Sexy Politics: The 30-second Review

My grandfather and I share a love of books. While our tastes may sometimes differ, it's a mutual love I like to encourage. My grandfather has always had an amazing library of books. They used to be the primary feature (at least in my childlike mind) of the large walk-in closet he shared with my grandma, and now bookshelves line the walls of his bedroom/living room. I remember sneaking into his closet when I was little so that I could sit on the floor and flip through the stacks and stacks of National Geographic magazines.

As I've stated before, trading political barbs tends to be one of our past-times. With that in mind, I told him he was allowed to get me one "Republican" book for my birthday, but it could only be Meghan McCain's campaign memoir, Dirty Sexy Politics. I respect John McCain, and despite our differing politics, think he* ran a pretty above board campaign. I also love a good behind-the-scenes campaign book that promises to give me a little bit of juicy gossip combined with my politics. Add to that the fact that Meghan McCain isn't afraid to be her own person and bend to the political will of her party, and I was sold (at least on reading the book).

Dirty Sexy Politics didn't disappoint. It's a quick and easy read that I devoured in a few hours. It's not the tell-all of a devout political insider. In fact, this was probably a saving grace for me. She largely steers clear of talking about specific political issues, and this helped keep my blood pressure in check. Instead, she focuses a lot on the process, the personal relationships and what it means to grow up and develop into a free-thinking individual. It doesn't hurt that I'm pretty sure she might have almost as much disdain for Sarah Palin as I do.

I knew from reading a few of her articles on Daily Beast and following her on Twitter that she isn't afraid to speak her mind. She has frequently spoken out on body image**, human rights and the Republican party's inability to truly change. You get all of that and a little more in the book. It's a pretty humanizing tale about trying to find your place in the world. I'd recommend it for just about you R or D.

*Just him. My anger at the tactics of other loonies (because let's face it...some of them really are insane) in the party will be saved for another day.
**Republican pundits began to refer to her as fat as a way to attack and hopefully silence her.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Sometimes I want to shout from rooftops

Even though this little bugger didn't survive, I love my job. This week my heart just overflowed with fondness for it, and I needed to tell the world how thankful I am.