Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Insane in the Membrane

I have been MIA again. Still busy with the house. Last weekend we were swarmed by bees and now have our own honeybee hive. That led to cutting down all of the old trees in our backyard. Which, in turn, led to the pseudo-orphaning of two little baby mourning doves and then the cruel agony of watching mama bird return later to no nest, no babies, and a torrential downpour that lasted all night. Mr. J and I were both in tears about that. She has finally left the area, so I no longer have to hear her telltale call. I will never be able to listen to a mourning dove again without getting a big ol' lump in my throat.

I have not forgotten about the GMBOA contest. I have an idea, courtesy of Mr. J, that I think you will like. But I need a little time to flesh it out, and this week, time is something I don't have a lot of. [ouch ... "a lot" and ending a sentence in a preposition. But I'm in no mood for wordsmithing right now]

What's on my mind right this very minute is that we are going on our first rafting trip this weekend on the raging Lochsa River up near Lolo Pass. Apparently this is the spot along Lewis and Clark's adventures where they had to kill a colt to feed the crew, where they faced near starvation, and where they were caught in an unseasonable snowstorm. And from what Mr. J just called out to me about the weather, I think that we may be in for a wet, cold weekend ... and not because of the river water. Thus the title of the post ... What are we thinking?! But it will be fun, and we'll have stories to tell. And I'm hoping none of those stories will have to do with the killing of colts or mourning dove abuse or frostbite leading to gangrene.

So, when I return on Monday, after my fingers thaw out so that I'm able to type again, I will be here with the GMBOA contest and possibly a story or two of the craziness that was our weekend.

Friday, April 23, 2010


As I mentioned briefly in an earlier post, I have been super-duper honored with the Golden Minion Box of Awesomeness, which was started by Whimsy through her Minion-lympics. Yesterday, as I sat at my desk, "working," I saw Randy the Postman approach the door with a brown box in his hands. I was at the door before he had even latched that gate closed, and the brown box was open within minutes. And oh, joy. There it was in all its golden, Mickey Mouse-ified glory. Unfortunately, my photographic skills leave VERY much to be desired, but here's my best shot:

And inside, what fun! Wonderful Wandering Nana met all the rules and then some (yes, there it is, nestled between my printer and my file box):

  • Rule #3: Add some kind of decoration or enhancement: Very cute red and white papercut Mickey Mouse decals (forgive me, Wandering Nana, if I got the technical name incorrect. Did you make those yourself? So very cute!)
  • Rule #4: Include some kind of action figure: I actually have several items here--a little traveling gnome, a Madame Alexander Cowardly Lion (courtesy of McDonald's ... I never knew they gave these out!!), and another little McDonald's dude ... perhaps from Sponge Bob? I am not really sure, even though he's my favorite.
  • Rule #5: You must include some kind of mini bottle of something: Bath & Body Works Orange Ginger energizing nourishing body lotion. Smells (and feels) SOOOO yummy on my hands.
But wait, there's more:
  • A packet of tissues in a very cute holder. No more phlegm for me! (See below.)
  • A sticky note pad and pen for all my little reminders
  • A chattering teeth chip clip ... love it!
  • Halloween confetti!! How did you know that's my favorite holiday?
  • A binky
  • Incredibly cute little heart brads
  • A very cute flower bookmark
  • A Fourth of July decoration
And saving the best for last:
  • My very own golden boa in honor of the prize-winning name of Gym-Boa.
  • An engraved medal indicating my Minion cabinet office of Interim Phlegm Czar! HA!!
So now the pressure is on. I must come up with a contest so that I can pass the GMBOA on to its next happy recipient. I must also gather all the goodies to pass on to the next winner (though we are all winners). I will post all the rules, etc., when I come up with said contest.* I'm actually tempted to have a contest to come up with a contest, but that gets confusing. So stay tuned!

* If you are interested in this contest, note that you must first be a Creamy Minion. All this requires is hopping over to The Creamery and becoming a follower--an easy enough request, as her site is a joy to read and follow.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Fabulous Friday

My mom's cousin just forwarded this photo on to the entire family. This is my great-grandmother, AKA Nana 2 (my grandmother was Nana 1, even though Nana 2 was a bunch of people's Nana before my grandmother was anyone's Nana). Anyway, I think in this photo she must have been 90 or so years old. That's my Grandpa's (her son's) pipe and hat, and that's my most favorite lake in the whole world behind her.

What a great shot to start off this gloriously springlike weekend. May your days be filled with as much glee and love as this woman enjoyed every day of her life.

Monday, April 12, 2010

And Another Thing

Wow ... two in one day. You know I must be procrastinating!

Just a quickie to say that a friend of mine from high school -- actually, we were really more acquaintances in high school ... she was WAY cooler than I ever was -- ANYWAY, we are now Facebook friends, even though we haven't seen each other in more than 20 years. Again ... anyway, this friend of mine has started a blog, and her latest post seems to be written just for me. So stay tuned, for soon I will be making my list of things to be grateful for. I know I have done it before, but I need to get out of this habit of complaining, even when things are really good (or even only partially good). Got to look at that silver lining!

Speaking of silver lining ... I am somewhat steadily employed and better get back to it before that status changes due to one too many missed deadlines.

So Much To Do

I've been MIA again, but this time not due to sickness or sheer laziness or lack of anything to say.

A week ago Friday, I bought two bookcases from a shop that is moving to a new location. I got a steal of deal of $10 each. What a bargain!
The next day, at about noon, Mr. J and I sat in my office, trying to figure out how to organize the room, where to place the bookcases, etc., etc., which led to the discussion of, "Well, we do want to pull up the carpet and paint the walls." "Yes, but I thought we were going to work in the garden this weekend." "Yeah, well, maybe we should do this first." And off to Home Depot we went to get all the materials to rip up the carpet, paint the plywood (for our temporary ghetto-hardwood-floor substitute until we can afford the real stuff), paint the walls, clean up the trim, etc. etc. All so that we could then move in the $20 bookcases. So much for my bargain.

For a week, our living area looked like this:

as we did this to my office:

And now it looks like this:

All that's left to do is hang pictures, shorten the curtains, and find some new bookcases. Because, alas, after all that, we decided that the bookcases really didn't go with my office. So now they are being used as clothing shelves in our bedroom (in place of the cardboard boxes that we had been using as dressers for the past 7 months ... really, we are not still in college. We are grown adults ... sort of. Really.)

After a brief respite of having the house all in one piece again, we started in on Mr. J's office, and once again our living room looks like this:

If you know anything about home "improvement" projects, I'm sure you won't be surprised to hear that in the process of ripping up his carpets, etc., we discovered that the wood around his window was rotten and icky and mucky from a leak that the previous owners decided to just ignore:
Oooh, pretty!

So yet another quick-and-easy project turns into a major chore. But already, it looks like this, so we are making terrific headway ... all things considered:

In between painting and moving and taping and priming, we also had time to plant a huge donation of clippings and cuttings from our neighbor's garden, buy all the materials necessary to build a fence around our future veggie garden, and attend a fantastic wedding reception up at Bogus Basin for some good friends of ours.
The happy couple

So, that's where I've been. Oh, and I am also anxiously awaiting my prize for winning the most recent round of the Minion-lympics ... or maybe it's completely separate from the Minion-lympics? Hmmm, I don't know. (Some Minion I am!) In any case, I was so happy to hear that I had won the next incarnation of the GMBOA from Wandering Nana. I cannot wait, though I'm very apprehensive about the contest I'll have to initiate to pass it on to the next grand prize winner. [If you have no clue what I'm talking about, take a gander at Whimsy over here and Wandering Nana over here.] I never ever win anything, but I won this, and I'm so so happy about it! Yay me :-)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Google Analytics-Inspired Ramble

It is a momentous day here at Midnight Rambler. Are you ready for it? I got my second follower!! Welcome, Jen of Haute Whimsy. (And there was much fanfare! I am picturing lots of confetti and party horns and fun hats. And virtual confetti is fantastic because there is no mess afterward!) [There were other photos indicating fanfare, but this one made me smile the most. So there you have it.]

So all this excitement reminded me that I use Google Analytics to track the vast amounts of traffic on my blog. Last I looked, I think I had had, oh, maybe 50 visitors, with most of those being myself before logging in as myself. I hopped on over there this morning to see what was happening and who was stopping by. And, boy, did I feel bad that the top 10 or so keywords searched to reach my site were variations on a theme of "squeamish cell carcinoma." I want to send out a huge apology to anyone enduring the wait to find out how bad their squamous cell carcinoma is, who go out looking for medically certified answers, only to stumble on my rambling, squeamish thoughts. [I also feel compelled to point out that I do know I am spelling it wrong and that was totally intentional, because just the thought of some foreign cancerous thing growing on my body (and the subsequent surgery to have said growth removed ... while I was still conscious and talking to the doctor) still makes me utterly and completely squeamish. Ick!]

And that thought right there never fails to get a smirk from Mr. J, who likes to remind me that I often come up with thoughts like, "I could be a crime scene investigator." (after watching CSI, of course) or "Maybe someday I'll get an aesthetician's license and earn a little extra income." (after meeting someone who did just that and loves it) Mr. J then likes to remind me that (1) I can't even think about blood and guts without flinching, and (2) I won't even pop a zit on his back without a great deal of "ewww" and "gross" and "that's disgusting" (not exactly the words you want to hear as your aesthetician works on your face, I suppose).

This isn't a new phenomenon. Back in the day, after watching Nick Nolte and Deborah Winger in Cannery Row (I think I might need to go back to watch that movie. I remember absolutely loving it back when I was a preteen.), I decided I wanted to be a marine biologist (albeit, a marine biologist living in 1930s in pre-high-falutin' Monterey). Then, in my 20s, I went to the Monterrey Bay Aquarium and discovered that I couldn't even bring myself to pick up a starfish in the kiddie pool area (the 10-year-old boy next to me thought I was a big wuss; and he was right). Then, after seeing Raiders of the Lost Ark (are you detecting a theme, here ... other than my absolute love for parentheses and asides?), I decided I wanted to be an archaeologist, despite my absolute fear of the dark and my detestation of creepy, crawly bugs. In college, I actually took an archaeology class and discovered that not only is it incredibly tedious with memorization of a ridiculous amount of information, but also, rarely ever do you go out in the field unless you are really, really lucky (or, in my case, unlucky).

Wow, what a tangent that turned into! A few sips of coffee after a week with no coffee, and look at me go! So, welcome, Jen. Thanks for stopping by. And I really hope I win those gloves :-)