life:: fairy garden

fairy garden 1

Recently I became enamored with the idea of fairy gardens.

Yeppers, had to make one.

I even used all the special rocks that my son gave me as a little boy.

fairy garden 2

The worst part is that I also used a piece of marble I picked up on a 3rd or 4th grade field trip day at a local lake.  As a fairy guard dog, I also have a Tinosaur that I got in a Happy Meal when I was 18 while harassing the help at a McDonalds with my closest high school friends that shall remain nameless.  The house is a gourd I have had drying in my greenhouse for 14 years.  Good gawd I’m a sentimental junk collector!  And the scary part is that I remember when, where, and why I got them all.

If you are interested, check out my Pinterest board where I got inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by!

life:: did you ever have a pen pal?

I wonder if bloggers that make friends online used to be the kids with pen pals.

I am and I did.

I had 3 pen pals as a child to be exact.

A boy from the Philippines

A girl from Austria

and Anne from Grenoble, France.

 I miss them and wish we would not have lost touch. Unfortunately, life and jobs and marriage and kids and a home get in the way of leisurely letter writing.

They were great at opening my eyes to the larger world.

I like to think that I am open-minded and can think globally.  Some of that I owe to those lovely children that wrote to tell me about their daily lives in far away places from Omaha, Nebraska.

As an adult with my child nearly grown, my home quiet and serene, my career plodding along on auto-pilot;  I am able to spend more leisure time on the things I love.  Crochet. Tea. Cats. Interwebz.  On this global connection I have found many new pen pals.  And all grown up too.  I have the most lovely online friendships through WP and blogging.   Some as close as Kansas and others as far from boring old Omaha as South Africa and Australia.  There are common threads among us all that bind us together in so many ways.

Some of my blog-pals and I have exchanged notes and tokens of appreciation outside the web, and each time it feels like that old familiar thrill of receiving a letter as a child.

gifts from tamara

~this was a recent one from Tamara~

Although blogging is like an open letter to anyone that stops by, it can also be as personal as a pen pal letter written in 1979.  When the common threads are found, we go back to read more and to share.  And in the end, we find a lovely group of people that just “get” us, and we just “get” them, and it’s pretty awesome.

Cheers to you, my bloggy pen-pals.  I like you. I really, really like you.

photography:: more of spring from my point of view


One of the most exciting things before Sunday.

A rogue cow in my yard.


On Sunday ~ REAL DRAMA!

A coyote hunting field mice for more than 2 hours 50 feet from my backyard.

Not my photo.  Martha has a better zoom than I do.
Not my photo. Martha has a better zoom than I do.

Oh the humanity!

life:: art & wine, bitches

Lately, the neighbor girls and I have been inspired to paint.

We started an Art & Wine Night.

It’s friggin fun!

art & wine 1

art & wine 7

Bottles of wine are consumed and we let the art take us where it will.

art & wine 6

We use plain old acrylics and inexpensive canvases.

art & wine 5

art & wine 4

art & wine 2

art & wine 3

art & wine 8

And then we create masterpieces.

At least we think so.

We also have a blast.

Next time…we will be painting large wooden letters to hang on our front doors.  It will rock.

life:: how to be an organized hoarder in 743 easy steps

Well maybe only 3 steps to get started.

I admit it already.  I think I am hiding it, but we all know I’m not covering it up well.  I am a pack rat, a hoarder, a sentimental junk collector.

There I said it out loud.  Isn’t that supposed to be the first step?

Yeah, about recovering from this…not gonna happen.  Instead, I spin it my own way into being organized.  Can anyone define OCD for me?

I love to collect snippets of life along this journey to remind me of thoughts or feelings or events.  Not that I re-visit them all that much, but I still save stuff.  Perhaps you have seen my card album post?

1.) Enter the SMASH BOOK


smash book 1

smash book 2

smash book 3

smash book 4

smash book 5

It’s messy and colorful and my life mushed into a non-scrapbook scrapbook.  I get to continue hoarding meaningless baubly silly stuff and I can do it without encroaching on every inch of living space that I share with 2 other human beings who seem to like clean and orderly living.   Win.

2.) Pinterest

I know I link to it often, it’s just that I am still in love with it.  It’s digital hoarding of stuffage that I want to read, research, try, explore.  Even though I’ve been on it since the beginning I still have an obsession with it.  For me it’s not the thrill of digital collecting just to be collecting, although that’s valid if you are so inclined cuz it takes up a lot less space than say collecting real taxidermied wild animals, which is also valid if you are so inclined.  Just not my cup of tea.  

The disclaimer on the fabulousness of Pinterest is this::  when your boards reach critical mass…stop.  Just stop collecting and start organizing.  I made the mistake of thinking I will have only 10 boards, that’s it!  Then my problem became scrolling till my hand cramped to find exactly what I KNEW I had pinned 2 1/2 yrs ago.  Now that I have broken out some of the critical mass boards into usable storage boards, I am getting more inspired all over again.

I am obsessed with the organization of information I can actually FIND again when I have the time to read, research, try or explore.  It also tames the out-of-control paper tiger that was wreaking havoc on my home.  No more printing information to stack up only to get lost in the abyss of my office.  Another win.

3.) Contain it

jar storage 2

I am a big believer in glass jars & baskets.  They can contain anything.

jar storage 1

And if you are still finding yourself at critical mass, try 40 bags in 40 days.

Holy cow it works!

food:: sanctioned anorexia

I like food, and I can admit it freely.  I am a control freak, and I can also admit to that. I am also a recovered anorexic.  If you have ever had anorexia touch your life, you know that it is not only about food, but that it is motivated by control.   My anorexia was halted by the news that I was pregnant in 1996.  For as much as I was an inner train-wreck at that time, I could at least look past my own neurosis to realize I had to eat for this baby’s sake.  So I ate.  A lot.  I gained 50 lbs. to make sure my child would be born healthy.  I had an excuse to control my eating in the polar opposite direction to give this child a healthy start in life.  And it worked.  I let go of the self-imposed stigma pertaining to eating, and I let go of the unhealthy obsession with being coat-hanger thin.  Once this little boy started to eat real food, I had to finally cook.  It’s really easy to not learn to cook when you don’t ever bother to eat more that a saltine cracker or 2, and a glass of milk every day.

The problem was that while I cooked healthy food for my little family, I began to eat in larger quantities than ever before in my life.  I gave myself permission to overeat on a regular basis and ended up getting way too heavy to feel good about myself.  For 16 years now, I have been overweight.  I have also been afraid to lose that weight.  Know why?  Yup, you guessed it.  I still have panic attacks and control freak issues.  This means that I am afraid to diet because I will end up right back where I started.  I don’t want that.  I have told myself for these past 16 years that I would rather be fat and happy than thin and miserable.  It stops me dead in my tracks every time.

My New Year’s resolutions for 2011 and 2012 both included trying to lose 1 pound per month.  I figured if I did it the slow and steady route, I wouldn’t land myself back in Anorexiaville.   That calculated move worked to a degree.  Over the first year, I actually lost 14lbs.  Yay for me!  During 2012 it didn’t work out so well.  I merely held steady over the year and contemplated Weight Watchers, or Zoomba, or something to jump start it again without going overboard.  But when I would make the effort to try one, Anorexiaville keep throwing up these huge flashy billboards, and arrows pointing to JUST STOP EATING banners.  I always look away quickly and then go find the chocolate chip cookies.

When 2013 rolled around, I made the resolution to give it another try.  It hasn’t been working out so well.  And now we are drawing to a close on the year, and I’m trying to decide a new approach.  I’ve been looking into lots of diets; Paleo, Vegan, Clean Eating, South Beach, Weight Watchers…I just want to change my life not follow someone’s dogma.  So I’m throwing that all out and starting over.

Simple calorie counting.  There’s an app for that.

life:: flat stanley

For a fews days now, I’ve been driving past a dead squirrel on my street.  I’ve named him Stanley.  Every time I go past him, his fluffy little tail is flapping in the wind.  The rest of him is not.  I hate when I see things like that.