Monday, January 31, 2011

Music Monday

For those of you who thought the cello was a dull instrument

And of course, I have to follow that up with the only man in the world who can rock the accordion:

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Christmas Presents!

My sister had already told me that my Christmas gifts from her would be late, and they arrived today.

The first thing I opened was a jar of blueberry jam--most likely homemade. Yumm. I guess I'd better get started learning to make biscuits from scratch.

Don't tell her, but I was secretly hoping for some more Fireweed jelly. That's my favorite. It goes real well on homemade biscuits, too. 

OK, next up were two smaller, wrapped packages.

In the first one was a magnetic memo pad.

I love these things, and always keep one on my refrigerator. In case you can't read it in the photo, it says, "Things I Moose Do".

In the other package was a new Alaska Christmas ornament.

And finally, this candle holder didn't survive the mailing. 

There just wasn't enough packing material in the box to keep the stuff from shifting around.  I've bought some glue, though, and maybe I can fix it reasonably well. 

And maybe, someday, I'll tell you about the time she sent me chocolate chip cookies to Italy in an aluminum pie plate with a sheet of foil over them.  And three 16 oz Dr. Peppers in the box.  Yeah.  There wasn't even enough left to call them crumbs.  I got cookie sand.  

She also (finally) sent new photos of my adorable nephews.  This one was my favorite.

That's Andrew (5), Nate (10), and Paul (3). 

Paul looks just like my sister did at that age, and if I had a picture of her at that age, I'd prove it to you.  But alas, I don't have one.

You'll just have to take my word for it.


Friday, January 28, 2011

25 Years Ago Today

I was in college.  At Hardin Simmons University.  I'd just finished up a class-- I don't even remember which one it was.  I headed into the Student Union building to watch my Soap Opera, as I did every day.

Expecting All My Children, instead, I saw this:

I sat watching, horror struck, as they showed the clip over and over.   I watched until it was time for my next class.

Life went on as usual,  for us at least.  But for the families and friends of those seven who were lost, nothing would ever be the same again.

Later that day, President Ronald Reagan would give these words.

Though it's been a quarter of a century, this is one of those things that says with you for the rest of your life.  For the seven, we will never forget them, nor the last time we saw them

as they slipped the surly bonds of Earth to touch the face of God.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Bunch Of Grumps

It all started around 3 AM, when the cat figured out how to open my bedroom door and get in.  She's not allowed in my bedroom.  But she comes in anyway, jumps up on the bed and meows.  Stupid cat.

Then I get to work, and everyone there is surly and snarly.  We are all just tired and frustrated.  The long hours are getting to all of us.  It was so bad that I asked Vanessa, "Is it just me or is everyone in this plant grumpy today."  She said it wasn't just me.  Everyone seemed grouchy.

Former Group Leader Rod even came over and yelled at me.  Well, he didn't really yell at me.  He was just grumpy because his truck has been in the shop, and he's had to ride to work with his brother.  His brother smokes.  Former Group Leader Rod hates the smell of cigarette smoke, and it's been too cold to open the windows.  He was just blowing off steam, but he let me have an earful of it.

I must admit, I wasn't exactly a little ray of sunshine myself.  But a hot shower and a Hal Ketchum video makes all things better.

And Bones.  It's a Gravedigger episode.  Those are always good.

Hopefully, this will all be followed by a good night's sleep.


And God Bless.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Whiskers On Wednesday

With a goggie smooch thrown in for good measure.

Moments like this are so rare and so fleeting, one has to capture them when they occur, without worrying about piddlin' little things like focus.

I seem to be suffering from a deplorable lack of motivation to -- well, to do anything here lately.  I get up in the 4:00 hour, work 9, sometimes 10 hours, then come home and just don't want to do anything.  That includes knitting.

I'm sure later on, once I've gotten used to these hours once again, blogging might pick up a bit, but right now, I'm just brain dead.

So, I think I'll go be brain dead in bed.


Even though it's only 8:30.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

When We Complained About The Heat

I've always considered myself a winter person. I loved the cold weather, the possibility of snow. Even the dreary, rainy days. But this winter, even I am getting tired of the cold and the rain.

In a pathetic, and somewhat vain attempt to brighten your day, I bring you memories of that far and distant time known as summer, when we complained about the heat.


Fruits and Vegetables


Country Roads

Reminders Of War

Wild Black-Eyed Susans

At The Beach

I hope I've managed to take just a bit of the chill off of your winter day. Thank you for walking along with me.

Monday, January 24, 2011

B Is For

blossom.  Or bloom, take your pick.

Yes, here is evidence that my Christmas Cactus is indeed blooming again. It's got a few more buds on it, but doesn't look like it's going to bloom anywhere near what it did last fall.

I've also made progress on Tabitha's Test Knit.  I'm loving this pattern, but I'm not sure I like the two colors together.  

I may just have to rip it and order enough of one single color to do the whole thing.

And since it is Monday, here is some music for you:

Anyone who knows me, knows that this song fits me to a T. Hey, I'm so nerdy that I even noticed Weird Al is doing the Vulcan sign wrong!


Saturday, January 22, 2011


Red handed! Or red pawed, as the case may be.  And with photographic evidence to prove it:

Rylea says, "Wait, what? Hey!!!"

Squeaky says, "Nom, nom, nom!"

Rylea says, "Mom! She's eating all my food!"

I told you she ate goggie food!

Friday, January 21, 2011

It's All So Clear Now

It would seem that winter has returned to North Central Mississippi, what with the freezing rain and snow we had yesterday evening.  There was no accumulation, except on Jimmy.  His doors were frozen shut this morning, and I had to pour water over them to get them to open.

It got so bad for a while that the dog didn't even want to go out.  She just kind of huddled on the couch, quivering.

The crazy Christmas Cactus has started budding again, too.

We are all very confused around here. Except the cat.

"Let me make things very clear for you,"says Squeaky.

"Your sole purpose on this earth is to provide me with noms and scritches.  That is all.  You may go now."

I guess I'll go knit for awhile.

Until her majesty beckons again.

P.S.  Former Group Leader Rod has been sick this week.  I offered to sing Soft Kitty to him, but he said he didn't think it would help.  So it's his own fault he's still sick.  Never underestimate the curative powers of a well sung chorus of Soft Kitty.  Even without the Vaporub and grilled cheese.  

Thursday, January 20, 2011

What If

you had a fire drill and nobody came. 

We did that yesterday at work.  They had our quarterly fire drill, only the fire alarms went off and nobody moved.  Everyone stayed at their work areas and kept on working.  Problem is, they play with those dadgum alarms so much that we never know what is going on.  One time, we had a fire drill and the alarms didn't go off at all.  Someone played his cell phone ring tone over the loud speaker and we were all standing there going, "What the heck is that?"  They had to get on the P.A. and say, "This is a fire drill.  LEAVE the building."

And that's what happened yesterday.  We all kept on working until they got on the P.A. and said, "This is a fire drill.  LEAVE the building."  And we left.

We got out into the parking lot to discover that this had been the BIG fire drill.  You know, the one were the fire department shows up and stuff. 

Yeah, I think we failed that one. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


on Tabitha's test knit.

I've reached the halfway point, and have had to change colors.  It's really a quick knit. I did this much just Sunday. I've done a few rows since then, but not really enough to make another photo worth taking.

I missed church Sunday because I slept until after 9:30. I guess all those 4 AM mornings (plus the dose of NyQuil--yeah) caught up with me. So, I had a lot of knitting time. More so than I've been getting during the week.

We've been working 9-10 hour days, 6 days a week, and by the time I get home, all I want to do is sit.  I don't want to blog.  I don't want to play FB games.  I don't want to watch TV.  I don't even want to knit.  It'll be like this for a few weeks until I get used to getting up at 4:15 again. 

If one can ever get used to such things.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Dream

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.-- Martin Luther King, Jr.

I think Martin Luther King, Jr. would be rolling over in his grave to see how his words have been warped and twisted to perpetuate the very racism he worked so hard to eradicate from this country.  It seems to me that we live in a world where content of character means nothing. 

Unfortunately, there are still too many people who gain too much wealth and power by keeping the races pitted against each other.   There are still too many people willing to play the race card in an attempt to gain an advantage. 

Of course, there will always be bigots in the world. Believe it or not, I lost some Facebook friends after publishing this post.   But I think for the most part, if the politicans would just leave us alone, we could get our differences worked out.

My friend Vanessa, who is black, told me, "We need to just get over the past.  None of us were around when that happened, and it's time to put it behind us and move on."  

Character...Vanessa has it.

Zo gets it, too.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

First and Finally

First, another finished washcloth.

This one is Peaches N Creme in Gumdrop. That makes three, and that'll be it for a while. I've got more cotton, but I need to get back to working on Tabitha's test knit.  Besides, worsted weight cotton on size 6 needles is hard on my forearms. 

I also spent a few minutes this afternoon turning this

into this.

Most of these have a story, though some of them I can't remember what that story is.  The first necklace on the left is an abalone shell.  I think Beverly gave it to me, many years ago.  I'm not for sure on that one, though.

The second one is a Barbie locket that Cody gave me for Valentine's Day one year.  I think he was 4.  He said I needed something pretty.  The arrowhead is one I bought myself, just because I liked it.  The B was given to me, probably for Christmas.  I'm thinking the ex's Aunt Denise gave it to me, but I don't remember for sure.  I feel really bad about that.   It's the one I really wanted to get out of this tangle, because I want to wear it.

The kind of dirty looking circle is a charm that was given to me for perfect attendance in children's choir in 1973.  That was the year I turned 9.  I'd lost it soon after and forgot I'd ever even had it.  Then one day, I was playing in my back yard and found it.  I've put it into some jewelry cleaner to see if it can be cleaned up a bit.  I wonder that I never did that before.

The tiny little gold heart is one my cousin Kathy (on my dad's side, I also have a cousin Kathy on my mother's side) gave me for being a flower girl in her wedding.  I was 4, and I still distinctly remember that experience.  Someday I'll tell you about it.  It's worthy of a post unto itself.

When I was in 5th grade, I had a fascination with sharks.  I loved them.  I still have a soft spot for them even now.  I received the shark's tooth necklace for my 11th birthday, along with a trip to see Jaws in the theater.  "We're going to need a bigger boat" is still one of the best movie lines ever.

Finally, the little purple heart is one that was given to me for my birthday by a friend when I was in the Navy.  His name is Danny, and he was a SEAL.  I used to have matching earrings, but I don't know what happened to them.

And that's about it for that.

Finally, Squeaky is watching Rylea eat.  She's hoping Ry will leave her something.  Strange cat likes to eat dog food. 

Squeaky says, "I do not eat goggie food!" 

"How gauche!"


Friday, January 14, 2011

He's A Lumberjack

My shift supervisor had on a red and gray plaid shirt at work today.  Every time he walked by, I started singing.  Right before the end of the shift, I told him he was wearing a lumberjack shirt.  He replied that it wasn't flannel, and I said, "It's still a lumberjack shirt".  Then he said, "I'll have you know that I used to be a lumberjack before I moved down here."

Oh my, I couldn't stop laughing.  So, dear Supervisor, this one is for you.

My friend Gemetrius recently told me that his wife was expecting their third child.  Earlier this week, I asked him if she'd had the baby yet.  "That baby is 10 months old now," was his reply.  Boy, did I feel like a putz.  Where had the time gone?

I had a Halloween shirt on, because it was on clearance for three dollars and I couldn't pass up that kind of a deal.  My HR guy walked up and said, "For a moment, I thought you had on black and gold, Steeler colors".  My reply:  "Ain't no way on God's Green Earth."  

The Other Rod, not to be confused with Former Group Leader Rod asked me when I was going to bring some more cookies.  This afternoon, I came home and stepped on the scale and was shocked, shocked, at what I saw.  So, sorry Rod, there will be no more cookies for a while.  Heck, I'm still eating up the Christmas Candy.  I've got four bags of mint truffle and cherry cordial kisses that haven't even been opened yet! But this weight has got to come off.  Hmmm, maybe that's why the jeans were so tight. 

One of my co-workers (who shall remain nameless for reasons that will become obvious in a moment) and I were doing something that we probably shouldn't have been doing.  He looked at me and said, "They're going to fire us both if they catch us doing this."

Wait, what?  No!  We weren't doing that!  Get your mind out of the gutter, people!


I'm going to go knit now.

"I'm a lumberjack and I'm OK"  .

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Thursday Randomness

I am single. Most of the time I am OK with this. But sometimes, just sometimes --like last night-- I sure wish there were another warm body in the bed. The thermometer read 14' this morning, and it hurt to walk from the car into the plant. It has been so cold that it's actually cold in the plant. In the 15 years we've been in that building, I've never been able to say that.

I hate that clothing styles are going back to skin tight.  I needed new work jeans, so I picked up the same jeans in the same size I've been wearing for years and years.  I noticed the "New Fit" label, but it kind of just wooshed right past me. 

I got home and tried them on.  I felt like my lower half was being squeezed in a vise.  They are going back to the store post haste.  I'm a little too old to look like I was poured into my clothes, thank you very much.

I wish you could try on lipstick.  I loved this color in the store. 

I held it up next to my wrist, and thought it looked good. But when I got home and tried it on, bleh...

 Speaking of cold, I woke up several times last night, and every single time, my heater was running.  It did not go off before I fell back asleep either.  Every single time I woke up, I thought, "I sure hope my pipes aren't freezing." 

They didn't, but I had run some jugs of water, just in case. 

At least I could have brushed my teeth, which I'm sure my co-workers would have been very grateful for. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I Don't Think So

I used to think it would be cool to live in Alaska.

Beautiful snow everywhere.

MEMBERS CHOICE Winter Scenes with Snow, Ice & Frost covered Trees & Fence after a Snowstorm

The mountains.

Bloody Mountain (12,544') from Laurel Mountain (11,812')

The wild life

Brown bear

But these last three days have changed my mind. I don't think I'd survive.

On the other hand, if I did live in Alaska, I'd actually have winter clothes.

Don't really need them in Mississippi.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Is For

one of the blogs I read regularly has a friend who has started The Alphabet Project.  I followed the link, and what you do is to take a photo of something that begins with each latter of the alphabet, much like the ABC Project of a few years ago.

Being that blog fodder can sometimes be lacking, I decided to join in.  So, here we go.

A is for amelanistic corn snake. 

This is Sunset, or Sunny as he is fondly known around here.  He is an amelanistic corn snake, which means he lacks the gene for melanin. 

A wild type corn snake will have black rings round his red splotches, like this.

Amelanistic corns lack all black coloration.  They are sometimes called albino corn snakes, but when one thinks of an albino, one thinks of a creature which lacks all pigment.  Newcomers to snakedom will sometimes ask why an albino corn snake isn't pure white.  The answer is that in the snakey genetics, albino --or more correctly amelanism-- removes only the melanin, the black pigment.  The snake will still have the genes for red and yellow pigments. 

I hope you've enjoyed this romp through the fascinating world of snake genetics.  It's given me a headache.

.Now comes the hard part--remembering to post on the assigned dates!

P.S.  Sharp eyed readers may notice that Sunny's eye looks a little cloudy.  There is nothing wrong with him.  When a snake is preparing to shed, fluid builds up between the old skin and the new skin, making the entire snake take on a bluish cast.  This first becomes obvious in the eyes.   Soon, he will have bright eyes again, and a bright new skin to go with them.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Snow Day

Well, we didn't have one. We had to go in to work, only about half the plant didn't show up, so we were only able to run two lines. Rod came running up to me and asked me if I'd braze headers for him, because Jake had said we'd run lines 1 & 4. I said of course I would, but then Jake changed his mind and decided to run lines 1 & 2, so I had to go back to my own work area. I'm not so sure that we built enough units to justify the expense of keeping the lights on all day, much less paying everyone. But that's not my call...

I got home to discover that someone had been busy in the back yard.

It was really kind of funny, because I'd somehow managed to convince myself that the snow would all melt during the night last night. I was relieved this morning when I got up to discover that it hadn't.

I'm not sure how much we got. It was 2" when I went to bed, but I didn't check it this morning.

I do know one thing, Rylea has been having an absolute blast in it.

"Can we get some of this every day. Mama?  Please?"

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Oh, The Weather Outside

is frightful.

I knew right away what kind of day it was going to be when I woke up in a near panic because I couldn't remember the name of the other Elvish dialect.  I got Sindarin.  It was the other one couldn't remember.  It's Quenya, by the way.

But the day just got better from there.  Along about 2 ish or so, it started to sleet.

Soon, freezing rain was added to the mix, followed by snow.

It's still coming down. But don't worry, I'm ready. I've got a big ol' pot of gumbo

and some knitting to keep me busy.

This is Peaches N Creme cotton in Desert Sunset.

We're supposed to call in the morning to see if the plant is going to be open.  If it's not, I'm going to stay home and bake a gingerbread.

Funny how falling snow always makes me want gingerbread.


Friday, January 07, 2011

Light Blogging

heavy football watching...

Cotton Bowl tonight, Wild card weekend Saturday and Sunday, then the BCS national championship on Monday. 

Yes, I have turned down dates to watch football games.

"Are you out of your mind?  It's the COTTON BOWL!!!"

Sigh.  Is it any wonder I can't seem to find a husband?

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

2011 -- The Year Of No Fear

I have declared 2011 to be The Year of No Fear!  I will be brave!  I will conquer!  I will be fearless this year! To demonstrate said fearlessness, I will begin doing the following:

I will work the crossword puzzles in ink! Oh, wait, I already do that...

OK, then, I will engage in knitting complicated lace patterns using yarn barely thicker than an eyelash!  Oh, wait, I already do that....

OK, then, I will regularly walk dogs whose combined weight exceeds my own!  Oh, wait, I already do that...

I know, I will drive to Memphis by myself!  Oh, wait...yeah, I'm sensing a trend here.

Wait, wait, I've got it! This year, I will tell my boss exactly what I think of his ideas! Nah, I said fearless, not stupid.

Hmmm, I'm going to have to get back to you on this one...

I saw Former Group Leader Rod at work today, and asked him if he missed me being on his line. He gave me The Look, and said, "Now, why do you want to go asking a question you already know the answer to?"

Later on, Vanessa and I were talking about some of our favorite TV shows from when we were kids.  Two that she mentioned were The Six Million Dollar Man, and The Bionic Woman.  I loved those shows!  I told Vanessa that I used to play The Bionic Woman in my backyard and here I imitated the slow motion running that they used in the show.  Vanessa started laughing and pointing behind me, so I turned around and Brian and Steve were just staring at me as if they thought I'd lost my marbles.

Vanessa is so much easier to work with than my former brazing partner, but I still miss Rod. 

And yes, we will be starting Saturday work this week. They don't seem to believe in easing us back into the routine. 

I'd done this once before, but Sus posted her map on her blog, so I decided to do it again.  She has been quite a few more places than I have.  I need to get caught up!

visited 19 states (38%)
Create your own visited map of The United States

If you count layovers in airports, you can add New York and Pennsylvania to that list.

There is a world map available, too, but since mine would just contain the United States and Italy, we won't go there. I did have layovers in Shannon, Ireland and Rota, Spain, but since I never left the airport, we won't count them.


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