Sunday, July 4, 2010

Stars and Stripes Forever


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Candy Making

I'm making chocolate wedding cakes, wedding bells, and interlocked hearts for my soon to be sister-in-law's wedding shower next weekend.  Seeing that the temperature is predicted to reach 90 on Monday, I decided to take advantage of the cool evening to work on the chocolate. 

For as much as I bake and love confectionery goodies, I have never melted down chocolate into molds.  I think that the turned out pretty cute, don't you?  I haven't decided if I want to offer them with the cheese and fruit trays during the wine tasting (we're having the shower at a winery) or if I want to use them as a decoration on top of the cupcakes I will be making.

Her colors are black and white so I used dark and white chocolate.  Wait till you see the super cute cupcake wrappers I found.  They are white with black fleur de lis.  I'm going to make 1/2 dark chocolate with white frosting and the other 1/2 white with dark chocolate frosting.

Chai kept me company in the kitchen, although I think she just really wanted to go outside.  I don't blame her, it's such a nice night.  But I'm not climbing out onto the roof in the dark.  Sorry little girl.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

3 months later

Oh, time.  You just pass by so quickly.  Has it really been 3 months since my last post??

Daisies in my grandmother's flower bed.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


I just read this and wanted to put some place where I wouldn't lose it.  I'm happy to say that I do remember a time like this and thankful that I grow up in that time.

According to today's regulators and bureaucrats, those of us who were kids in the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s or even the early 80s, probably shouldn't have survived.  Our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paint.   We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors, or cabinets, and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets. (Not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking).

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.  Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat.  We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle.  Horrors!  We ate cupcakes, bread and butter, and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we were never overweight because we were always outside playing.  We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle, and no one actually died from this.  

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of wood scraps and fruit crates and then rode down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes.  After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.  We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.

Now one was able to reach us by cell phone.  Unthinkable!  We did not have Playstations, Nintendo 64, X-Boxes, no video games at all, no ninety-nine channels on cable, videotape movies, surround sound, personal cell phones, personal computers, or Internet chat rooms.  We had neighborhood friends!  We played dodge ball, and sometimes, the ball would really hurt.  We played other games such as Kick the Can and Capture the Flag.  We fell out of trees, got cut, and broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.  They were accidents. No one was to blame but us.

We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it.  We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms, and although were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes, nor did worms live inside us forever.  We rode bikes or walked to a friend's home and knocked on the door, or rang the bell or just walked in.  Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team.  Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment.

Some of us weren't as smart as others, so we failed a grade and were held back to repeat the same grade.  Horrors!  Tests were not adjusted for any reason.  Our actions were our own.  Consequences were expected, no one to hide behind.  The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of.  They actually sided with the law.  Imagine that!  This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers and problem solvers and inventors, ever.

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Today I did my first headstand in yoga class.  My neck and upper back muscles are definitely not strong enough to stay in the pose for very long.  I've had a stiff neck all day, like I slept on it weird.

Hope I heal up before I have to do it again on Thursday.

Saturday, February 27, 2010


I just finished my federal and state taxes.  I'm getting a little more than I had expected so yay!  I should be able to pay off some debt sooner than I thought.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Laundry Day

Now that the snow is finally less of a burden, I headed over to the very busy laundry mat.  But no matter how much I wish, laundry day is never like this...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Angie's Visit

Let's talk about the weekend.  My sister came for a visit.  She showed up late on Friday night, but not too late to grab some dinner at The Quiet Storm.  After dinner I took her over to my office at CMU and showed her the new Gates building and the Randy Pauche Memorial Bridge all lit up with it's LED light display.  After a stop at the Market District Giant Eagle we headed back to my place to bake a loaf of bread for breakfast in the morning.

After a yummy breakfast of homemade bread, eggs from her boyfriend's farm, and fried potatoes, we headed over to the year round farmers' market in East Liberty.  I had been wanting to visit there and I knew she would jump at the chance to visit a market, with her boyfriend being a farmer and all.  We both bought some Amish goat cheese (mine was with cranberries and almonds, yum) and she bought some raw milk.  She and her boyfriend are always talking about the benefits of raw milk but they are not allowed to sell it in Ohio.  I know that the milk in the grocery stores is horrible for you, so I try to buy other types of milk occasionally.  Right now I have some almond milk.  But I have to say, I do enjoy cow's milk over any other form of milk.  I guess I'm going to have to buy some raw milk every Saturday.

After the farmers' market I took her to see Margrert and her tea shop over in Squirrel Hill.  My sister exchanged the tea pot I had bought for her for Christmas for a larger and nicer version.  Since the weather was so nice, we spent about an hour walking around Squirrel Hill.  Made a quick stop at the Irish Design Center in Oakland and then headed to the Strip to the History Museum (another place I had been wanting to go).  We probably would have enjoyed the museum more if we had not been so tired from staying up until 3am waiting on the bread to bake.

We had dinner at Aladdin's and then she headed home and I headed to a mani / pedi / martini party.

I took it pretty easy on Sunday with a trip to Ikea to buy a duvet cover (new sheets is all the remains for my bed makeover), a stop at Target (I managed to get out of there spending less than $100), and took myself to lunch at Cracker Barrel.  I was home before dark.

There is something romantic about fire escapes, isn't there?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Web Site

I made a web site for my artwork this week.  It's still a work in progress, but what isn't?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Little Miss Fix-it

Gah!  5 days since my last post!  I am a creature of habit, and that habit involves starting a routine, doing well with that routine, missing one day that soon turnes into a few days to a week and more and more until I abandon all chance of going back to the routine.  So, I'm trying to break the pattern and here I am!

Let me recap...

Friday:  Worked from home and shoveled the porch, steps and side walk.  Joined my roommate and several of her girlfriends for dinner and tarot card readings.  The card reader didn't tell me anything that I didn't really already know, but she did give some validity to the things I thought that I knew.

Saturday:  Bought fish for the fish tank, grocery shopped, baked a loaf of bread (1st time ever!), and took most of the Christmas decorations down.  The trip to the grocery store was insane since we had had a week of snowy weather.  Everyone was out to restock the fridge and pantry on Saturday!

Sunday:  Board Meeting at the theatre.

Yesterday:  Watched "How I Met Your Mother" at the Nac home.

Which brings me to today.  I finally submitted the Requisition for the PO at work that I had been avoiding for over a week. It took less than 30 minutes (including a botched first attempt).  I had been avoiding it because creating a Requisition is something that I do so infrequently that I really have no idea what to do or if I'm doing it correctly.  But, I had to do it so I just went for it.  Took 2 attempts but I think the second one did go through.  Now I wait to see if I did it correctly and it gets approved.

I put away the rest of my Christmas decorations tonight.  I thought that I'd be really sad about the cold and empty feeling that the home gets after the decorations come down, but I'm not too distraught about it.  It's actually kinda nice to have everything clean and minimal.  That's part of how I think I want 2010 to be...minimal.  Minimal tv watching, minimal eating out, minimal nights staying up later than I should....

Oh, I almost forgot about the title of the blog.  Tonight I was Little Miss Fix-it.  I store all of my bins of Christmas decor in my closet.  I keep my clothes in two Ikea wardrobes.  Since my closet is all storage, I rarely get in it and just keep the door shut.  Only problem was the door would not latch.  Not because the closet is over stuffed, it's arranged quite nicely and neatly.  No, it was because the door knob and latch weren't working correctly.  I decided to take the whole thing apart.  How difficult could it be?  The answer, not difficult at all.  The problem was caused by this little spring piece which had slipped, and not forcing the latch part to snap back out of the door.  These are old doors here with old hardware.  I took pictures which I will have to post tomorrow.  I was so proud of myself, I took the latch apart on the bathroom door as well.  The trouble with that latch was different, it was sticking.  I sprayed it with some lubricant for bicycle chains and I think it's a little better.  It's not perfect but that one was and still is livable.

Update: Here are the pictures I promised



My dad will be so proud :)

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I started a yoga class tonight at Yoga on Centre.  Taking a yoga class was something that I have been wanting to do for years.  I'm so happy to have found a studio that fits.

This is going to be good.  I can tell.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Shoveled the walk

Wednesday is trash day.  I live in a building with 4 apartments and every Tuesday evening after work, I come home to see all the trash cans for these 4 apartments at the curb.  I do not know who puts out the trash every week, but in return, I bring all the cans back to place on the side of the porch as I leave in the morning for work on Wednesday.  This morning the trash had not yet been collected.  I'm sure the snow had delayed the garbage collectors regular schedule.  But when I got home from work, there were the cans waiting for me.  Now, someone had grabbed their can only and returned it to their spot.  Makes me wonder how people can expect that someone else will take care of the rest...but...that fifth can would have meant another trip for me, so thanks.

Since I was out in the cold already, I grabbed the shovel, which I have placed inside the front door of the building for anyone to use, and shoveled the porch, steps and front walk.  I was on a roll so I climbed up on a plasic chair from the porch to lock one of the front fench doors which someone had unlocked in order to move something large into the building and neglected to put back in place.  I have gone through those unlatched doors for over a week now.  Nope, no one else is going to do it, so I'm on it.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Tonight I had a lovely dinner and a movie date with my dear friend Krista whom I do not get to see often enough.  We dined at Panera (I practically live there) and saw "Nine".  I love movie musicals.  But I still can't figure out what "Nine" stands for.  There were only seven muses.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Car Repair

I took my car to Ryan's Auto Glass today to have a repair made to my windshield.  A small, quarter sized starburst shaped crack.  The very nice man who greeted me when I entered the shop told me that I had the worst kind of crack and it was in one of the worst possible places.  The crack was actually several little cracks and it's proximity to the edge of the windshield meant that it would be a delicate procedure.  After only about 20 minutes they told me that it was a success and I was good to go!  Thanks Ryan's Auto Glass :o)

I'm off to watch The Big Bang Theory then go to bed.  I didn't get as much sleep as I wanted to last night.  I think I managed about 5 hours.  I couldn't fall asleep and once I did, I kept waking up.  I think that I was afraid to fall asleep because I was afraid I would over sleep due to my sleeping-in-marathon over the past couple of weeks.  Needless to say, I was not very productive at work today.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


It's cold out.  One good reason to make this an early night.  The other good reason...I go back to work tomorrow.  Oh my goodness it's been so nice to have these past 10 days free to do what I want when I want.  I'm going to have to use 2010 to find a way to make this life style happen more frequently.

So today I...

  • Filled my bird feeder.  Why is this an accomplishment do you ask?  Well, filling my bird feeder involves me climbing out of a window onto a snow covered roof and reaching for a bird feeder hanging in a tree and not falling a story into the backyard.  Therefore this is an accomplishment.

  • Did this...

 What is this? is another question you may be asking.  Boy, I'm raising all kinds of questions tonight.  This is a power strip attached to the side of my dresser so that I can 1. Get the strip off the floor and 2. use the strip to plug in this...

  • Assembled an aquarium.  Like the bird feeder, this is mostly for Chai.  I like to give her things to look at like birds and now fish!  Well, we don't have fish yet, cause they would be dead.  I'm going to stop by a pet store tomorrow and see what I need to do to the water to make it safe for a few fishies.

  • Took a drive out through Ohar Township and Fox Chapel to Beechwood Farms Nature Reserve to pick up a book I have to have read before my first class on Jan 30.  What class?  (See, lots of questions).  I'm taking a class on beekeeping.  I know!  I'm freaking excited about it!
  • Bought two pairs of yoga pants for the yoga class I'm beginning on Thursday.
  • Ordered a paddle to replace the one I lost for the bread machine I adopted from my parents.  Can't wait to start making bread!  I know that this can be done with out the aid of a bread maker, but I have never made bread that way and I'd rather not have to.
  • Took a nice hot shower, applied lotion with some new products I picked up today to make my skin soft and now I am ready for bed at 8:10pm drinking a glass of red wine called Zuse's Blood and eating slices of a chocolate orange.
I'd call that a great finish to a wonderful holiday.


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Only One Day Left

I am the master of looking at time off as time to clean, organize, read, catch up on projects fallen to the way side, and then realizing that there is only one day remaining in my vacation and I have managed to not complete the tasks I wanted to have completed.  I did however manage to take a lot of time to rest, sleep in till lunch time, watch several movies on my Netflix que, go bra less for 2 days straight and be at peace.  I chose to live the past two days following this philosophy...

"The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." - Bertrand Russell

Sounds good right?
I did finish the inbox project I started yesterday and now my hotmail and yahoo inboxes are less than one page full.  I still have some emails to reply to.  I'm horrible at email correspondence.  Maybe that's why I have not been more successful with eHarmony.

Oh!  I totally forgot to mention the super happy moment that occurred while I was out shopping for my new bedding.  I was in Marshalls looking at blankets when I found a cute little soft and fluffy bath mat on clearance for 5 bucks.  Since it was only 5 bucks I decided that I neede it.  I went to the register to make my purchase and when the woman in line in front of me was finished she turned to me, handed me a gift card and said "There is $9 left on this card.  Knock yourself out (or maybe it was 'Go crazy')."   I got that bathmat for free!  I wished her a very Happy New Year and left the store with a huge smile on my face.


Friday, January 1, 2010

Oh Yea.

Ok.  So I had to do a second post today to share a smile with you.  I've been blogging for a little less than a month now and it was bound to happen eventually...I'm sharing a small obsession with you.  I'm sure that this will not be the last time I mention it.

So, without further adieu...the latest video by one of my favorite people on the planet, Jason Mraz.

Cleaning out the clutter.

My plan for today was to do as little as possible and I succeeded.  I spent the majority of this first day of 2010 on the couch with my laptop cleaning out my inboxes.  I haven't finished all my inboxes (including my work email) but I made some good progress.  I think that I deleted around 1000 emails.  A good new year resolution for me would be to pick on day a week to clean out the inbox. 

In cleaning out last years' emails I got to relive a little of 2009 and refresh my memory of all the events that took place.  If I had to pick one word to define 2009 it would be busy.  I like being busy but the busyness of 2009 was for distraction.  I kept finding projects to distract me from dealing with things that I wanted to ignore.  2010 is going to be different.  I'm looking forward to working on Lynnetta and doing some things that I want to do and have wanted to do for a long time now.

Around 7:00 this evening I had a baked good withdrawl.  Last week was full of cookies and chocolates and my body longs for more.  My remedy was an oatmeal cake.  It tasts as good as it smells.  And since it is made with oatmeal, I won't feel guilty about eating it tomorrow for breakfast.