Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Guest Posting at Magical Mystery Tours

Today I'm guest posting about the second part of my super fun weekend with Magical Mystery Tours' owners and my personal friends, Denise and Stephanie.  We got a behind the scenes tour of Google and channeled our inner pirates!  Check it out at: Magical Mystery Tours Blog.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Consistency and Such

I meant to blog on Monday.  But I usually mean to blog on Monday and don't end up getting a post up until Tuesday.  Then Thursday is Ollie day.  Then Friday is Friday Finds Day.  Those two are nice because I'm not struggling to find a topic.  Yet I didn't even get up one of the easy posts last week.  I figured my blog friends would be okie dokie since it was a busy week anyways.  I found a justification that let me enjoy trukey prep, family adventures in the city and quiet Christmas decorating on the weekend.

That justification doesn't resolve the knowledge I have about good blogs.  I've been around the blog block enough times to know that consistency will make or break your readership.  I know I want my blog to be well written, updated and engaging.  Then I come home from a full day of work, run some errands, fix a meal, feed the cat and sit on the couch.  I check my email before getting to the writing part.  Then I don't make it all the way there.

Self-imposed deadlines haven't been my strength.  The year that Mr. Palindrome was on deployment, I set three goals for myself: Make a quilt, race a triathlon and something that I now forget.  Obviously the forgotten one didn't get done.  I did race a triathlon but the beginnings of the quilt that was never bound finally was laid to rest before our move to California.  No way was I paying $1 per pound to move that sorry reminder cross country.

Sometimes my blog reminds me of my half done quilt.  My priorities shift according to my perceived energy levels, my patience for finding a camera cord, or fighting over the allotted time I have on our shared personal lap top (remember all those laptops in the October Photo Challenge - yeah, 2 of them are company ones and the rest don't work).  A few episodes on the DVR can push back my intentions.  I remember now why I felt so free when we didn't have cable.  The pictures sitting on my memory card, documenting events over the last month, stare at me until I hide the camera in our desk cupboard and look at my DVR playlist again.

I'm not going to promise more consistency, a new publishing schedule, or anything else like that.  I only have an explanation to offer - I'm not good at setting myself deadlines.  My ambition rarely matches my energy, capability or time commitments.  Even though I can't keep up with one blog, I've been working on a new blog with completely different focus. I love my blog friends and I want to build more.  I'm asking you to bear with me as I continue to find ways to balance the demands of life and find restful times for myself.  I'd also love to ask you what your approach is to consistency in blogging and what your blogging goals are. Lay it on me in the comments!

For now, we're prepping to eat some more turkey.  Someone remind me next year that 20 lbs is a huckava lot of turkey.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Finds - Rolling Thunder

Inspiration struck me earlier this week with some dark hanging clouds.  Unlike the ominous clouds on the East Coast, these clouds don't pack the same punch.  There's no claps of thunder tearing through the sky.  In some ways, it's almost like a storm unrealized and I'm left feeling like it was a half attempt at a storm that was just annoying rather than a full realization of mother nature's fury.  I'm aching for a good thunderstorm.  Or maybe I'm just aching because I got my first flu shot.

Clockwise from Top L:
Lucky Hemlock - Rising Cloud
Black Cat Handspun - Cloudy Day Spinning Bat
Kenton Bead Works - Partly Cloud Handstrung Quartz
Little Ideal Pottery - Brown and Cloudy Stoneware Mug

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Day in the Life

After a hard morning huntin' birdies:

Oliver deserves a nap.

This kitten just slays me with cuteness.Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

17 Minute Wait at the Pharmacy

"It's the same thing over the counter," the pharmacist continued to try convincing the elderly gentlemen.  "It's cheaper and you won't have to wait in line at the counter," he said.

The elderly man's gray head turned reluctantly towards the aisle, his disbelief obvious.  "I've always gotten it from the pharmacy."

"Ok, well maybe next time." The pharmacist conceded.

The seven person line moved up one space.  The Asian equivalent of Tony and Carmela Soprano stepped up to the counter.  Their hushed conversation was practically mute compared to the elevated voices to assist the previous customer.  Carmela incessantly floofed her fur collar and readjusted her bump it.

Next in line.  Her several layers of winter wear were more appropriate for the slopes than the soggy streets of San Francisco.  She pushed a baby buggy covered in a receiving blanket before her.  Something about prescription formula and insurance and it being out of stock.  She kept demanding to use the land line to call her husband to arrange for him to pick it up across town.  She wasn't leaving without assurances.  As she rocked the buggy, ostensibly to keep the child asleep instead of screaming from hunger, I envisioned Lewis Carroll's imaginative pig nosed baby hiding beneath the cover up.

I edged closer to the front of the line, sandwiched between the laxatives and herbal remedies.  I had never seen an enema before that day.  I'd rather not again, if it can be helped.  I also realized I had the urge to go the bathroom.  The irony wasn't lost on me.

The tall, chic woman in front of me schooled me in fashion.  She was city through and through with brown leather saddle boots hugging her legs slightly more loosely than her jeggings.  Her flat ironed hair, half way down her back was just so shiny.  I wanted to touch it, but refrained.  I'm not that creepy bespectacled gal that touches shiny hair in the drug store while you look away.  But I am the gal who thinks about it.

The mafia vacated empty handed.  Walgreens isn't down with funneling prescription drugs.  Or so it seems as Carmela wiggles to the door one hand on her collar and the other on a LV.  Baby momma is still on the land line.  I can't remember the last time I used a land line. Until I remember that I have a land line at work and used it that morning.

I guess that Shiny Hair is in line for the same reason as me.  Ensuring that some bow chica wow wowa doesn't turn into a blanket covered buggy and trips all over town picking up special formula.  Well, at least that's her story.  I'm not sure what I want.  So I take my prescription home and eat some macaroni.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Friday Finds - My Holiday Party Outfit

I was smitten.  I mean Sandra usually has that effect, but when Dana over at What the Frock? featured this great look:
Sandra Copy Cat Style via What the Frock

I was head over metallic reptile skin heels.  I started collecting everything into shopping carts because I had just decided what to wear for our respective work holiday parties.  The total came to $248 before shipping. I also had a nagging little voice in my head reminding of my renewed dedication not buying new without searching for it second hand.  So I trolled Etsy's vintage section instead.  There's more than one way to skin the cat.  Ollie, cover your darling ears.

Here are the items I scavenged in my copycat of the copycat look:
Counterclockwise from L:
Rewind Finds - Vintage Gold and Bronze Sequin Dress
T's Vintage Emporium - Black Velvet Single Breasted Blazer
Vintage Objects Shoppe - Vintage Rhinestone and Pearl Earrings
Vintage Jewelry Etc. - Multi Chain and Pearl Bracelet
Jenny Elkins - Vintage Black Patent Clutch
Must Love Vintage - Bronze Amalfi Pumps

I haven't pulled the trigger yet, but the total came to just about $170.  What's your take on sequined dresses?  What are you pulling out for the holidays?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

My Ollie, What Big Teeth You Have

All the better to bite you with Momma.  My little baby is all grown up and lost his baby teeth (in a bit of a bloody battle with my white feather down comforter no less - Brain Wash here I come).  Here, I try to get him to show the camera new big boy teeth.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Prepping for Yosemite

There's two types of people in the world.  Those who buy fitness equipment and those who use it.  I'm in the former camp.  Show me an Athleta catalog and I'll show you a full cart.  Who needs to know that my yoga pants have seen more of the microfiber of our couch than the yoga mat?  I have no less than three long sleeve technical t-shirts with cool key pockets.  I wore them last week while running.  Errands.  I wish I could say I actually ran from errand to errand, but after my stop at Starbucks involving a chocolate croissant, it was more accurately describes as strolling errands.  This plays out again and again in my life.  Before our move to San Francisco, I finally let go of the softball equipment I hadn't used in 2 years. While I felt proud of myself, I hid a leotard, ballet flats and leg warmers in my luggage just in case there's a really convenient studio and my buns need shaping.  The shaping is definitely needed, but I haven't so much as Yelped dance studios in the area.  

Old habits die hard and I was moving to the promised land of the great outdoors where petrified trees reigned.  As I prepped my National Parks Passport and dreamed of the fresh air, I also clickety click clicked my way to a gently used pair of Merrell hiking shoes on eBay.  
I wore them around the apartment "to break them in" which turned into a lounging photo shoot of good intentions.  The elephant in the room asked when my shoes would see dirt.
Last week, we had a crew of friends from the East Coast ask to see some redwoods.  Jack pot!  These bad boys were taken on their maiden voyage in the cathedral like peace of Muir Woods.  After their first taste of trail, they yearn to see the peaks in Yosemite and the shores of Hetch Hetchy. Yosemite, here I come!  Right after I finish my pirouette, sun salutation and 5k.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Finds - Thanksgiving Neutrals

Mr. Palindrome, in his ongoing quest to find decorative items for our house "that pop," has often told me that if I bring one more beige thing into the house . . . then he'll dot dot dot.  sometimes it involves making me return said item, never sitting on our couch again or wearing colored contacts so at least something isn't brown.  I think I'm going through a phase.  It's just all so clean looking.  Beige matches everything.  I can add colorful accents on whim and quickly change the entire scheme.  Color screams commitment to me and I'm a bit timid right now.

This week's collection features that old standby favorite of mine, the lovely neutral and a few ways to a touch of color to the palette.  Personally, I'm adding blue dishes and green accents to the chocolate and beige table cloth I ordered for our Thanksgiving table.  Oh, and the legs of our table are slightly muted farmhouse red.  See, something that pops.  


Clockwise from Top L:
License to Quill - Quilled Paper Thanksgiving Card
Asta's Toys - Golden Olive Wool Acorn Earrings
Pretty Little Things - Crocheted Pumpkins
Vintage Events - Pedestal Dishes

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Ollie's Soft Paws

Exhibit #473 in the Case of Melinda is a crazy kitty momma - I bought some acrylic nails for our cat.  Kitty mommas in the know told me about this alternative to declawing.  I thought it was a bit extreme at first, but after a few weeks of unintentional scratches, climbing up the shower curtain, etc. I dove off the deep end.  Well, diving off the deep end might have been ordering the glitter nails, and I opted for clear Soft Paws.  Just wait til you see his Christmas nails though - it'll be awesome sauce.

Three weeks after living with them, I'm ready to give my endorsement.  I tried taping me applying the nails, but after I got one glued in between my toes and nearly dropped the camera, I settled for an After video.

Are you mitigating the effects of your pets' claws?  What's working for you?

PS: This is a message from Ollie - O989df (It was a two pawed message).

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pinterest Challenge - Harvest Display

Back when this was making the rounds of Pinterest, I knew I wanted to attempt a copy cat project.  I even devoted a Friday Finds post to the DIY elements.  I hurriedly ran to Safeway, secured a six pack of Red Stripe and promptly drank them all throughout the course of weekend football watching.  Then I got stuck.  Or rather the labels got stuck.  Turns out Red Stripe prints their labels right on the bottle rather than a sticker.  Hrrmm.  The project stalled out with a bundle of wheat and some cute signs I found at Michael's, waiting for an answer.  I tried Papyrus thinking that I could get a roll of wrapping paper that would cover it up.  I bought a sheet of orange gift wrap that looked more like a Diwali theme than a subtle Thanksgiving one.  I was desperate to make things work - even to the point of paying $5 for a stinkin' sheet of wrapping paper that I knew wasn't jiving.  I charged on, channeling my inner Tim Gunn, trying to make it work.

Then Katie Bower announced the fall Pinterest challenge and I knew I had to persevere.  One morning as I stood in line at Peet's, steamed milk froth filling my senses, I was struck by inspiration for a work around.  Actually, the idea hit once I had my drink in hand.  The cup insulators.

Thus I present, my humble interpretation of the great harvest thanks display:

Don't forget to check out the other challengers (through the link party on the hosts' pages), especially the hosts:
Katie of Bower Power
Sherry of Young House Love
Ana of Ana White
Erin of House of Earnest