Tuesday, November 27, 2007

In which I throw caution to the winds

For years, I have been buying hamburger in bulk and repackaging it in 1 lb packages to freeze. A while ago I upped that to 1.5 lbs because there are more people eating food in this house than there were twenty-five years ago. I have a lovely kitchen scale and the Packaging of the Hamburger was a job I hated, but when I had a recipe that called for a pound of hamburger, I knew exactly where I could one.

Over the last year or so, I've been realizing that measurements in recipes are kind of ...okay this looks like it's a cup of flour. Let's write it down as a cup. ie - brace yourself - the world will not end if you don't use exactly what the recipe calls for.

Today I repackaged hamburger in 2.3 minutes by saying "Hey that looks like it's around 6 packages."

And sure enough, it was.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

In which B and the dog take turns having the last word.

So B and I are out and about, having supper at Treasures of China (which is B's favourite restaurant because of the great food, by which he means the curly fries. He eats curly fries, and then some more curly fries, then a bit of fried rice.) and then going shopping for a birthday gift for his friend. We're trying to find the Toys'R'Us, and because I am not a boy, B is fairly certain I will get lost in the 12 blocks between the restaurant and the toy store. So he's ragging on me, and I'm ragging back and at one point he says:

B: What is your problem?

Me: Pickles.

B, considerably derailed: Huh?

Me: Right where my brain should be? Pickle juice.

B: You. are. the. weirdest. lady. on. earth.

Oh, and why am I posting at 1:00 am? Because the 12 lb watchdog looked out B's window ten minutes ago and saw something she didn't like, and started barking her brains out. Every time I told her to "Shh!!" she barked at me, to let me know that there was STILL SOMETHING SINISTER OUT THERE and I should just let her go rip it to shreds already. She's now in there doing that thing she does in the back of her throat that isn't barking because she'll get in trouble for that, but sounds exactly like one of the children muttering under their breath "You are being unreasonable."

And so I am.

Good night.

Friday, November 23, 2007

I should be too embarrassed to tell this story ...

So for months I have been impressed and baffled by my MP3 player, because it can apparently tell if my headphones are on my head or not. Proof? Every time I take my headphones off and leave my desk to run an errand, it turns itself off after a few minutes. Doesn't matter what headphones either.

Technology. Magic. They're often the same to me. I don't try to work out the finer details, I just observe and wonder.

Today, 18 mos after I got the thing, I realized I also press "Pause" every time I leave my desk ...

Thursday, November 22, 2007

TechnoBoy! Read this before you pick me up from work!

(and get the eye-rolling over with)

So a few days ago I realized I actually have actual money in my bank account.

Wow, I thought, I could get winter boots.

I tried. I really did. I went to Naturalizer where they're all on sale and tried on several pair, but apparently when Naturalizer says their boots are wide they mean "although apparently not as wide as the duck foot you're sporting, sister".

Then I went and looked at cotton pants, and even dress pants, ON SALE, at Tabi, but nothing called to me loud enough for me to try them on.

And then I casually sauntered past the Bentley store BUT!!! You know* that RED LEATHER BRIEFCASE I've been ignoring, that my laptop would fit in PERFECTLY? that was originally priced at an eyerolling $250? SOMEONE had put it in with the sale stuff. And then someone yanked me by the collar and forced me to look at the price tag, and then there I was at the till.

(less than a quarter of its original price, people.)

*no, of course you don't. I haven't mentionned it before. Sometimes it shows up in my dreams, but just because I blog doesn't mean my life is an open book. I've been ignoring that bag on a weekly basis for several months. (It's led to the purchase of one wallet and one purse but we won't talk about that.)

Anybody want a very functional and pretty cool looking black and pink laptop bag by KasePro that is frankly much too large for a 13" laptop? Make me an offer.

And a bit of Pratchett for you

"Vetinari grabbed a helpful question from the gathering throng."

  • From "Thud!", by Terry Pratchett

“that’s when the truck hit him”

(George and Gracie)

(funnier when George said it)

I'm just here to say ...

I hate mornings.

Mostly I hate mornings that I have to go to work. Mornings when I don't have to work have taken on an almost Utopian shine, in my head.

Also I think there is a chance that a person is MUCH too busy if your first thought, before you even open your eyes, is "@#$@#$#@. It's morning. Already."

Monday, November 19, 2007

"Yikes!" she thoughted. "Yikes!"*

*title courtesy of A, at the ripe old age of 2, "reading" a book out loud

So I zipped out to the rink after my class tonight, to watch some older boys play hockey.

BIG older boys.

FAST older boys.

Older boys with LONG STICKS who were allowed to CHECK.

I turned to my friend, whose son was in goal and said "That's not *hockey* - that's a *blender*. All flashing blades and sharp edges."

So I watched and winced and shuddered and wondered -

What are chances I could get B to take up rug-hooking?

okay I'm done with that nonsense

(although I'm curious how that displays if you don't have the fonts installed ...)

So A had a wrestling meet the other day. TechnoBoy and I had to leave early to take B to hockey, and time passed and A hadn't had a chance to wrestle and time passed and time passed and FINALLY, she got to wrestle, about 5 minutes after we should have left ...

And she ROCKED. Won it 5-0, the other girl didn't get any points at all. B said "Stop smiling like that!!" but I told him he'd be a dad someday, he'd understand.

She won her other two matches of the night as well. She's currently undefeated - three more meets in the next three weeks, and then the season is over.

Go A!

Techno Boy Wants To Know ...

do that posting from Word thing and have it get all fancy with formatting?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

okay this is trippy

So I decide to work on The Book for another hour before going home to Calgary and I open MS Word for Vista and I click the word "New" in a different place than I've clicked before and it asks me if I want a new document or a new blog post??!?!?!

So clearly I had to choose blog post.

Did it work??

Saturday, November 17, 2007


Me and my laptop in the back bedroom at my brother's house.

1000 new words on my novel, so far.

Nowhere to be for another 24 hours.

Occasional pause to google "healing properties of milk thistle" and wonder whose Search String of the Week that's going to be.

Carolyn Arends through the headphones, singing "This is who you are."

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Tuesday Twelve

1. Does Kharfel let Brynn do the carving?

2. If 1 = yes, is it good enough?

3. If 1 = yes, and 2 = no, why not?

4. If 1 = no, really? Crap. What happens next?

5. If 1 = yes and 2 = no, and there is an answer to 3, what happens next?

6. If 2 = no, is it because the quality of the work is lacking, or because Brynn has an imperfect grasp on the complex emotions this particular carving requires?

7. Does goat milk taste different from cow's milk? The Internet is of two minds on this. Goat milk yogurt has been known to make my taste buds stand up and dance for joy.

8. Should I take the Internet's word for it, or should I get up from my chair RIGHT NOW and go buy some goat milk?

9. Why is there so much screaming in my basement?

10. Why is A so bent on joining the wrestling team?

11. Do I have to let small boys tease each other until there is so much shrieking my ears fall off?

12. Why do I have no BBQ sauce?

Bonus question: why do all the names in my novel start with either K or B?

Just research, honest

So in the last week, I have typed these two things into a search engine:

1. How often do you need to milk a goat?

2. Kidnapped baby never found.

The answer to #1 is, twice, for a dairy goat.

You're welcome.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Just goodbye for now

(Blog title courtesy of my talented brother in law, whose music can be purchased at www.dwightplett.com.)

Last year at the InScribe conference in Edmonton, there was an older man who had taken the bus all the way from Prince George, BC, to Edmonton to fellowship with us. I didn't recognize him, but I recognized his name immediately - H. Maxwell Butcher entered many of the poetry contests held by InScribe and usually took home a prize. When I asked him why he hadn't come to previous conferences, a sweet sad smile crossed his face and he said he had been unwilling to leave his wife. The gently acceptant shrug that punctuated that sentence told me all I needed to know about what had changed.

Mr Butcher was a delight. He was interested in everything. He was eager to try new things in the poetry workshop I facilitated. He used a walker and didn't hear very well, and yet everywhere he went, he was smiling. I found myself actively seeking him out at mealtimes because of the great good cheer he radiated.

He took time out of his schedule, after he returned home, to call and thank me for the workshop. I've had a few conversations with him since, over the phone, and now and then, a new poem will show up in my mailbox, with an intro like "I've tried another one of those triolets you showed us how to do!"

I was disappointed to hear that he was not well enough to travel to InScribe this year, and the news of his death saddened me. But yesterday, as I searched for words to wrap around this man, I thought of his tall form stooped over a walker, and the gentle sorrow in his voice when he talked about his wife. That picture faded and refocussed - Mr Butcher, striding tall and proud in heaven, with his beloved Eva at his side. I don't know much about how things will be, but I am willing to bet that he is smiling.

It's a good, good life you've lived, a life for Jesus, I think, when a woman half your age who interacted with you maybe half a dozen times is this close to tears because you've gone ahead.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Because I am committed to blogging about the important things

Okay did anyone out there read The Book of the Dun Cow?

Did you like it or hate it or did you (inexplicably) find that it raised no great emotion in you?

Saturday, November 03, 2007


I was going to do that NaBloPoMo thing but I think I've missed the start date. (by the way, that's way easier to say if you pronounce it "Na-Blop-A-Mo."

Now shhh!! I'm writing.