Sunday, February 13, 2011

Crack The Whip!

Talk about getting thrown into the fire!  It has been an extremely long week.  You know...the kind that feels like you lived an entire month crammed into one week.  Body buzzing from all the caffeine and exhaustion, ever had that?

There was no 'easing' back into the job.  It was a rat race from from the get go. 
88 (eighty-eight) hours my first week back!  And no reinforcements.  Yup, all by my lonesome...  Help is on it's way however.  After next week!  Then it gets to be fun actually!  Deb and I go places and do things at least.  It also makes the long hours go by faster.  I have always believed in the "Whistle while you work!" theory.  Looking forward to the whistle!

Everyone around me is sick or getting over being sick.  I am hoping like heck that it doesn't make it's way to me.  I don't know what would happen then!  Not good.  I had a bit of a scratchy throat early in the week, but I think it is more the lack of humidity in the air right now.

The place I am staying at takes great care of me.  All I gotta say about that is, THANK GOODNESS! 
I got back to my room at 10:30pm on Wednesday and was welcomed with a note that read "Look in Fridge".  Bless Becky! 
She made homemade Beef Stroganoff and gave me a huge portion!  Along with asparagus and a biscuit with butter...Yum!  I ate it for dinner that night and lunch the next day and dinner the next night!

And for the questionable throat, she gave me this...
Heaven!  I left her a note telling her she's evil!  :)  I will have to get the recipe for sure!

I sat down this morning and read a bunch of your posts.  You guys have been busy!  Sewing, cookies, deep thoughts (write the book, get the goat!), crochet, picking schools, must read books, more shoveling, pressing oils, grinding flour (want one of those!!!!!), starting seeds (so jealous).  Now I am tired again just thinking of everything you have been up to!

Luckily, I do have Internet thru the hot spot on my cell phone.  However, I haven't had time to sit and figure out the LogIn issues.  So I can't leave comments.  It gives me some sort of goofy something or other.  You know what I mean. 

Well, I hope you all have another wonderful and prosperous week!  I miss you guys!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Hi Ho!!!

The Dwarfs are calling!  Blech!  Hackaloogie!

As the song goes, "Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it's off to work I go!"  It was rather sudden and I am frantically trying to get myself and my house in order!  I should have had the weekend to get things done, but that was kaboshed when they called and asked me to come in over the weekend too!  But the good news is, I was able to get my Peeps delivery date changed!

The bad news of course, with such little notice, I haven't had time to pack (yet) or stock up anything for Pig Pen.  The last time I traveled for work, everyone joked that he would end up in a corner sucking his thumb in nothing but his could happen.
I'm kidding!  But what's the big deal you say?  Well, it's not a local job.  So it's hotel living, eating out and praying for Internet service.  I am not sure which of those I dread the most.  Certainly not "fine" dining!  If I have Internet, I will do my best to keep up with you guys (over-time allowing).  If not, I will miss you all dearly!  So fingers crossed!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Snowed In, Sewn Up!

Pretty sure my MIL has the best philosophy on "Snow Days".  She says it forces everyone to slow down and spend some time at home.  Now that could either be with the ones you love (or drives you nuts) or doing things you love (that we never have enough time for).

Right before the storm hit, I started working on a special order purse.  As soon as it was finished, I loved the pattern and results so much, I made my early run into to town to beat the storm and get the goods to make my own. 

Here is the first one:
Normally I find a million things wrong with my work, but I was pleasantly surprised that I couldn't pick it apart too bad!  Aren't the colors fun??

This is the one I made for myself:
The only thing I struggled with on this one was getting the fusibles to stick to the denim.  So I went ahead and cross-hatched it down the sides, just in case.  Oh and p.s. The right needle for the job made a huge difference!
And on that note, I am all ready for summer with some new, ah...err...clam diggers?
Do what ya gotta do and make'em work!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

We Got Spanked!

So far, we have made it to the record books as the 5th largest storm to hit our area...and it ain't over yet!  However, we made it thru the night with power!  My Dad and Connie down state haven't been so lucky as they were hit with alot of ice first.

The winds were minimum 40mph sustained with gusts up to 67mph.  I took a few "Before" pictures yesterday just as it was starting:
You probably can't see this well...Turkeys out in the field!
Of course I ran out yesterday morning to stock up, much like everyone else.  Except I didn't go to the grocery store, I went to the fabric store :o).

I had to laugh because my girlfriend said the local grocery store was (the horror!) out of bread!  I sure am glad I learned how to do that myself.  Even before getting my hands down in it, I at least had a bread machine.

Interstate 80 from our exit west is closed for 60 miles.  Many other major arteries, interstates and counties are shut down and The National Guard is deployed.   Thousands of folks are with out power and snowed in for a while.

One of the most interesting things from this storm...Thunder Snow!  Now if you have never seen it, it's amazing!  Imagine how the sky lights up backed against pure white!  Supposedly Thunder Snow has more amperage than typical lightening.  The weather man said "You don't want to get struck by this!"  Sure am glad he tipped us off to that! LOL!

Pig Pen plowed several times last night, however, this is what we woke up to:
3' drifts up to the house
Plow Pile up to about 9'
Missy loves it!
Clearing will last for about an hour or less!!!
No one can say for certain how much is actually on the ground because of all the blowing and drifting.  For now they are saying 18" and more in other areas.  The drifts are well over that!  I am glad it didn't end up at 34" like one computer model called for.

I made a nice big pot of homemade chicken noodle soup, homemade noodles and fresh bread to keep us nice and warm!  And then of course, I have my sewing projects for being 'shut in'.

Since starting to type this post, the news just said they have upgraded the blizzard to the THIRD worst storm for our area!  It has stopped snowing in our location, but Chicago is still seeing it come down 3" per hour and my Dad's power just came back on and he is making coffee :o)

How are things for the rest of you?  I know most of you Northern folks are used to this stuff and I have to say, it really hasn't been all that bad...if you just stay put! 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Awe, Shucks!

Jane at Hardwork Homestead graced me with this pretty little thing.  First, I have to say that I am honored, albeit undeserving!  (Stylish, I am not!) 
Jane is my go to gal of all things homestead-ish, from gardening to canning, DIY, livestock, re-purposing, bargains, all things homemade or hard worked!  But above all things, she is my "Think Pad".  To say she is inspirational is an understatement. 

If you have never checked out her blog, I highly recommend it.  I am fairly confident she doesn't get much sleep with all the things she does in a day.  I only wish I were half as amazing as she is!  Click Here for Jane's Link!

Part of receiving this award is sharing 10 things about myself that you may not already know.  That's a tough one...

1)  OK, how about the Awe, Shucks -  when I was a kid, my Aunt used to prop me on the bed of a Pick-Up truck and make me shuck corn.  When I found ones with worms in them, I would scream like a girl and throw them as far as I could.  In High School, I broke the girls record for frisbee and softball throw.  Corn shucks must have paid off!  These days, my girlfriend, Heather, gives me the wormy ones to shuck.  I have no fear of most insects unless they bite or sting.  Then I am still a girl. 

2)  I never had a nickname growing up and always wanted one.  When I started my first 'real job', I got my first nickname and answer to it to this day.  It's "Stinky".  Some folks even forgot my real name!  It was entirely related to a horrid perfume I wore to work one day.  I have since acquired several more nicknames including Little Greek Girl, Little Sh*t, and (cleaned up version) Flippin' Genius or FG.  I hate being called Diane with an "E".

3)  I wanted to be a lawyer, motivational speaker, teacher and a mom.  I went to college and majored in English instead.  I became none of the above and never even finished college.  I have no regrets however.  I am exactly what I am supposed to be.

4)  I have always wanted to write a book.  If I thought I had anything worth saying or a story worth telling, I would!

5)  During High School and College, I was actively involved in Student Government.  I have never once considered running for Public Office for two reasons:  I don't want to declare a party and I would have to admit, "I inhaled".

6)  If I could buy any "toy" in the world, it would be a wave runner!  I love tearing thru the water, being in the water or any where near water!  I taught my little brother how to swim, but still have to plug my own nose.

7)  When I was little, I was always sick.  I missed alot of school and almost got held back in the 3rd grade because of it.  Then my parents had my tonsils and adenoids taken out and I have been mostly great since!  The worst is the occasional cold and seasonal allergies to all things outdoors (bummer!).  I have only had the flu once.  And I haven't been sick in almost 2 years now...knock on wood.

8)  I hate crowds and large gatherings and always sit in the back of the room.  My girlfriend Sue calls these "Mandatory Formations".  I can't take in all the energy in the room at once, it overloads my circuits and makes me cranky.  I would rather take a months worth of quality coffee breaks and visit with each family member than sit thru a big "Show and Tell". 

9)  Up until the 6th grade, I never completed more than a year at any one given school or town.  I stopped counting after having moved 25+ times.  I have never lived out of my home state however.  I learned very early that kids are mean and I hate bullies.  Therefore, I have always been an advocate for the underdog even when it means throwing myself in front of the bus.

10)  Working for a large company most my young adult life, I designed and developed -from the ground up- a computer program that is used from here to the East Coast.  It is somewhat outdated and needs work, but no one has been able to design an alternative or upgrade to the program.  After 15 years, it is still being used today.  I never saw a dime for it outside of my weekly paycheck.  This has always been something I felt very accomplished about (refer to cleaned up version of a nickname) and then in the other sense -extremely ripped off.  I should have been a millionaire long ago and living on a mountain range somewhere in the middle of no where surrounded by chickens, cows and pigs!  If only I had known... 

Again, I want to thank Jane for sharing this with me!  I love you girl!  But now I have to pick one person to pass this on to.  That's the really hard part.  You have all sparked my interests, inspired and taught me things!  Oh and you make me laugh...gosh how I love to laugh!  With you of course, never at you :)  Well, maybe at you sometimes! ;o)

So the person I chose, I hope you will all agree is someone who is very deserving and stylish as well.  One thing I love about her -her blog is an information super-highway!  She is very thought provoking and diligent with all tasks that she decides to conquer.  She has a love of animals and raises them humanely with great care.  She makes the best possible use of her land and puts the health of her family at the fore front by gardening and raising as much as possible within her means.  And she shares it all with us!  Truly admirable.

The award is being passed to Leigh at 5 Acres and a Dream!  Please do check out her blog and get to know her!  You wont be sorry that you did!