Monday, September 15, 2014

Goodbye Ma Duggar. I love you.

I'm about to do a risky thing.
It's something I've been mulling over for a while.  At least three years.  There were always reasons not to do it.  It's too big of a change.  It will affect the kids.  We can't possibly live this way.
But, I think we can live this way.
It will be a shock at first.  Old habits die hard.  The kids will certainly be affected.  There may be tears.

It has to be done.
I'm going to cancel cable and honest, we'll be just fine.
This week one of my projects is to go over the budget for the upcoming school year.  When you live on a public school teacher's income from time to time it's good to comb over the money so you just don't go and blow it.
Cable TV.  It's blowing.

We can afford it and it's nice to spend ten minutes scrolling through a menu trying to decide what to watch, but ultimately we're not watching.  We're bored. 
Breaking Bad is over.   Mad Men is about done and I can hold on until it shows up on Netflix.  Sunday nights without the Walking Dead?  We'll figure it out.  No Duggars?  My lip is quivering a little...

Jon Stewart's on Hulu Plus for a substantial savings every month.

And Downton Abbey, Downton Abbey is only a PBS station away.  That Earl of Grantham is one sexy sexy man.  So is Mr. Bates but I think he's hiding more dark dirty secrets and Anna is going to become prostrate with betrayal.  At least three of them will get killed off.

Not even Sharknado can convince me to stay plugged in.

I plan on updating my readers and other hangers on about this decision around mid January.

The delirium tremens should be over by then but that's when the cravings will be at their worst.

Maybe I'll learn to knit this winter.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Gotta catch'em all

Woo I'm tired!

It's a good kind of tired.  The kind of tired that goes into putting a lot of work into something you love to do, being surrounded by people who also love what you do, and then saying goodbye to the ones you love.
Or sort of saying goodbye.  It was a premature embarkation.
This morning I woke up at five to drive my Navy son 120 miles to the nearest airport.  He'd come home on leave to attend Salt Lake Comic Con and leave always has to end.  We got into the airport, parked needlessly too far away, got to the right terminal via a long and crowded shuttle ride, and then discovered that his flight was scheduled for the next day.

This means that after a week of straight heavy sewing on Comic Con costumes, three days of crazy Con attendance, and one day of this night owl being up way too early, I have another day of get up and go tomorrow.  Waking up at five in the morning is always something makes me so goddamned chipper.
It's okay though.  An extra day with the Sailor Manchild?  I'll take it.

He had the time of his life at the Con.  Have a picture of my children.  That jowl faced woman in the middle is me. 

 Left to right, the Sailor Manchild as a human version of the Pokémon Gardevoir,  Becky - The Absent Minded Housewife as the housewifely Lucy Ricardo, my nine year old as Ventus from Kingdom Hearts, and my fifteen year old as Sora from Kingdom Hearts.

My little Ventus met these YipYips and it made him very happy. 

I met John Coffey and that made me happy.  Mmmm happy.

The Sailor Manchild bought a bunch of Pokémon badges and that made him happy.


All the costume watching made me a happy girl in general.  We left each day tired.

This is what I hope to be doing tomorrow as soon as I get back from the airport. 

Then it's back to the sewing.  Halloween is coming.

Monday, September 01, 2014

No one has announced that Wil Wheaton will be showing up, so I'm not going to bother with makeup.

I've got maybe a half hour to post before I have to head back to my sewing machine.

Salt Lake Comic Con is next week.  It's expected that my family will go in costume since I'm the fool who has been sewing them for more than half my life.  I've been snorting lint for several days.  I'm high on rayon.
I haven't done too bad in recreating these from some video game I don't play:


And this thing from a cartoon and video game or fan-fiction or cosplay or whatever other media this hails from that I don't watch or play or participate in:
I'm making myself a costume.  I was enthusiastic about it once.  Now I'm just hoping that it will cover all the parts of my body that Utah requires.

If I keep covering myself in sewing lint I can just go as a tribble.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

You told me you were combing your hair!

This summer my sweet and gentle fifteen year old middle son suddenly slammed right smack dab into puberty.  I knew it was coming but the whole suddenness of it was hilarious.  One morning he was cherubic and high pitched, the next morning he'd become a bass voiced towering pimple. 

He weighs 94 pounds and wears size 27 X 34 jeans.

No, those numbers are not fudged even a little bit for dramatic purposes.

He's only around 5'8" so this makes him a pair of boney legs with a head on top.  Finding clothes to fit this kid has been an adventure that I wish could have been solved by an eagle sized plot hole.  Instead I just had to buck up and start searching for pants at the beginning of July and for the most part I was successful.  He might have brickwalled into puberty but I didn't think he'd gain thirty pounds in two months.  He be skinny. If there is anyone that couldn't climb a rope in gym class, it's him.

In fact, he tried to get out of his sophomore gym class this morning.  Without parental permission.

He had this silly idea that he could successfully complete his entire high school career without attending a single gym class.  The school counselor foiled his plans and enrolled him in a weight training course as a little first day surprise.  That is her job.  She makes sure the youth of the community get their fair share of math classes and P.E.  She's seen me shoot tequila so I don't question her methods.

I did think that weight training was an fine choice considering it was about the only choice he had left for a gym class.  It's not necessarily how much you can lift but how loud you can grunt, right?  Any weight can look impressive if you give the act of lifting it full dramatic effect, screeching and moaning and quivering with effort.  Then if you bang the weight back onto the floor after your reps, it's like putting an exclamation point on the whole act.

This is what is was like when I had weights in high school and I was a 100 pound, 5'10", little girl.  Barely even broke a sweat.  I took a class called, "CoEd Jogging" the next year.

The boy comes home from school, glares at me and says, "I about puked in gym."

He never glares.  Ever.  Even this glare looked kittenish.

I feel badly about this for about a half second.

Then I reminded him that at least he doesn't have to take gym while he's on his period.  Leaking through your tampon during a dead lift is embarrassing.

On the upside, I doubt he'll get so into weights that he'll outgrow his impossibly sized pants.

He'd better not.  You can't even hand me down pants that size.

Monday, August 25, 2014

I wanna whip out my squirrel.


I decided to take the summer off from the blogosphere, or whatever the coolest bloggers are calling it these days.  Bloggy-land?  Blogsylvania?  The Digital Written Self Promotion Depository?  I'm sure it's one of those.  Instead of trying to schedule being funny three to four times per week, I decided to allow my brain and body to do as it would. 

Today is the first day of school, the first day of schedules and homework and going to bed early, and it's time to get back at it.  The break was needed but I've missed it.  I've missed you.

Summer proved a lovely time.  My family took the time to be with each other in a new way.  It was good to be relating to my husband in a new way since his Aspergers diagnosis.  Where I usually gird up my girdle for summers because of the increase in the demands of family life, the loss of space and the over abundance of housework, I can genuinely say that is summer has been simple and wonderful and harmonious. 

Summer simplicity has made me realize that I was suffering from literary constipation. You get backed up when you think you always have to try to be profound with the funny.  It was like my every post needed to impress that I'm deep enough that if you stepped in it, you'd have to pull your feet up out of your shoes and leave them stuck in the mud of my mind.

OK, so the jokes are stuck in the mud too.  We'll fish them out eventually.

Deep as mud seems to be the way with blogging these days.  There is so much you want to touch upon because it's stuck on our collective social media psyches.  Everyone has an opinion on politics and pop culture and race relations and war and charity and celebrities and healthcare and family life.  Some even expected that I should voice an opinion on this sort of thing or that sort of other thing...which is a reasonable expectation when you've written other opinions on anything from sex to why other people's children smell being obliging is a natural response.  These things matter and being of the world, they matter to me too.

I found, however, that instead of husband and kids and cats pushing in on my space, it was everything else that I thought I should be concerned about.  It's all so much noise and then my brain went down with the shoes and the jokes.

Nothing mattered more on some days than feeding the ground squirrels in my yard.

This is everything that is right in the world.
Today is my 21st anniversary too.

It's a great day.  The weather is cool and gorgeous.  I can smell rain in the air.  The kids came home happy and healthy.  None of my cats have vomited on the carpet.  I sewed.  I ate yogurt.  There will probably be nooky later.

Hi again.  Nice to be here.

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Two slices of turkey bacon is 70 calories. Two slices of real bacon is 80 calories.

Last summer, when I was going through problems with my petulant bladder and subsequent fun with several courses of antibiotics, it dawned on me while standing on the doctor's scale that I had gained weight.
There were clues before that of course.  Bigger pants.  That's a certain clue that your frame isn't as small as it once was.  I also needed bras with actual cups and structure because I'd gained myself some boobs.  There was the embarrassing purchase of granny style underwear to cover my butt with.  My wedding ring wasn't coming off my finger.  People asking me when I was due...that sort of thing.
Those of you who knew me in high school probably think that it's a fluke that put on a pound or two.  In high school I was the tall girl with bird bones.  The girl who ate like a horse, sucked down Mountain Dew and had a difficult time finding pants long and thin enough.  If any of you wondered why it seemed that I wore the same pair of jeans every day it's because I'd bought four pair of that style because they fit.  I have a 36 inch inseam, for gosh sakes!

Girbaud jeans were stylish at the time.  They did not fit.  Therefore I thought they were ugly anyway.
Twenty years since high school, three pregnancies, eight years of fun with my hormones, and a love of all things cake, and my BMI was on the edge of  having a "fun personality".
I signed up on MyFitnessPal in October. 
As of today, I've lost twenty-five pounds.

Considering that my goal is thirty pounds, how it's gone so far ain't too bad! 
How did I accomplish this feat?  I ate food, and counted every calorie that went into my mouth 95% of the time, finding that sweet spot of eating just a little less than what it takes to fuel my body in a day.  MyFitnessPal helps you with this.  It's fabulous.

Did I up the exercise?  Well, no.  Just changed my diet.  Now that the weather is warmer I'm looking forward to getting out hiking. 
Did I eat a ton of rabbit food?  Sort of.  You find that when you're at a calorie deficit, you want to eat more roughage because it's low calorie and it fills you up.  Otherwise I didn't suddenly go gluten free or Paleo or Atkins or Southbeach.
Did you deprive yourself of food that tastes good?  No.  You just budget in your favorites.  Like butter.  Doritos.  Peanut butter chocolate easter eggs.  Whole milk.  Alfredo sauce.  Cheeseburgers.  Girl Scout cookies.  You may want to eat an entire bag of Doritos but you stop at an ounce.
Weren't you hungry?  At first, yes.  My body was used to the feeling of being very full.  I powered through that with oatmeal and celery.  The feeling went away when my hormones started to level off.  When my hormones levelled off I found I didn't crave the refined carbs nearly as much as I used to. I'm not an emotional eater. 

You didn't buy diet food?  Other than fresh veggies and meats?  No.  It's not necessary.  Besides, diet soda tastes like ball sweat. (I don't care if you love diet Coke and you're offended by my using the term "balls".  It's straight up testicular perspiration.)  You don't necessarily get more food and less calorie for your buck or your taste buds when you buy food marked "lite".  That said, Hebrew National 97% lean hotdogs are incredible.

How did you track the calories that went in your mouth?  With a postal scale.  Everything gets weighed.  Especially the calorie dense foods like cheese.

Did your grocery bill go up?  Nope.  My husband has joined me on the diet and because we're buying way less snack food, our grocery bill has fallen.  We also eat out a little less because it's difficult to track calories at a restaurant.
What about Christmas?  I gave myself a week to eat what I liked.  I gained two pounds back.  Then I got right back on the horse.
What do you weigh now?  Not sayin. 
So, what's your pants size then?  Long.
So, what's your bra size then?  Not large.  Not large in any way whatsoever.  Not even medium. 
Have a pic, taken nice and fresh, five minutes ago:

Monday, April 14, 2014

I must rule with needle and thread.

I've been sewing a lot lately.
Or rather, I've been a vigilant keeper of cats off my sewing lately.
Never ever place a hyperactive cat and a new tissue sewing pattern in the same room.  What you'll end up with is mounds of shredded and unusable pattern, clouds of cat hair, and a look on the cat's face that says, "Yeah, so?"
I've been enjoying the fabrics of my ancestors.
When my Grandmother on my father's side died in 1994, she left behind a hoarded house full of craft materials, yarn and fabrics.  What could be salvaged was, and I inherited a lot of surprisingly well kept yardage.  Well kept...and most of it pretty cheesy.  Great for the costumes I sew. 
When my Dad's sister died in 1998, I again became the recipient of craft materials and fabrics.  My Aunt, she had much better taste which means the yardage isn't as easily costume-fied. 
Something like that.  No one wants to go out on Halloween in blue cotton broadcloth.  Besides, there wasn't enough blue cotton broadcloth to pull something more than this:

Are you Sting on spice or are you just happy to see me?
What I'm saying is that if you really really really need a pair of flying underpants for Halloween, I'm happy to make some for you in return for adequate compensation.  But I won't be making a pair simply because I have just the right amount of fabric in my stash.
Instead, I'm weeding out the yardage and making a few practical, non-costume items for my Etsy shop.
Please, take a look.

And please like my costume page on Facebook.

Thanks...and my cats thank you too.

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