I am ashamed to admit it, but I've come under the Twilight spell. Over the Christmas holidays I read the first two books at my sister's house and this afternoon I started the third book. I'm about half way through it now. I won't say I'm obsessed. I mean it's not like I have an Edward desktop or screen saver or collect chocolates with his picture on them or anything. In fact, I still don't get all the drama over why he's so hot or an awesome boyfriend or whatever. But is it weird that I find myself identifying more with the vampire than the girl? That says a lot about me, doesn't it?

I promise I'm not going to go around swooning over sparkly Edward now. Because I've seen the movie previews and that actor....NOT HOT. He looks like I could be old enough to be his mother and that is not cool at all.

Dear Texas Tech,

Yours is a very bad decision. I think you have made a very very bad mistake. Your timing suu-uucks. There is a time for firing and there is a time for waiting until after the bowl game. Maybe the player was mis-treated, maybe Leach is a giant jerk (really, did he slap kids around on national tv ala Bobby Knight?), maybe this is being blown way out of proportion....I don't know. I do know that there are a lot of pissed off people out there and they're going to yank their money and school support. And I know the crazy people are posting addresses and phone numbers of the parties involved so ya'll better get some security.

I'm cheap so I never actually gave you any money anyway. Good thing I didn't buy that Alamo bowl shirt I saw last weekend.

Disgruntled Red Raider

ps....I was actually going to watch that stupid game while I sat in my Texas Tech Cotton Bowl sweatshirt from 1992 but now I'm not. So boo on you, Gerald Meyers. I hope you like tortillas because I know your yard is covered in them right now.

pps....Dear God, thank you for making my boss like the other Michigan school so hopefully I won't have to hear all about this on Monday.


Letting my Gleek flag fly

There really is no way to look cool when you are blasting this song on your car stereo on 7:57am on the way to work, is there? (as if there would be any good time).

But come on, he makes Neil Diamond sound hot. Also, it took my mind off the fact that it takes my entire drive to the office for my car heater to kick in so I spend the entire time freezing.

How I spent my Christmas vacation

My brother-in-law is part Polar bear and my sister likes to be economical, so they keep their house at a brisk 60 degrees. So I spent my time there bundled up in many layers. If only I'd had my own personal crock pot to stew in.

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Merry Christmas Eve!

It's snowing!
Will there be a white Christmas for me?
I sure hope so.


With a twist

michelle's hat

Pattern can be found here. This was made as a gift for one of my coworkers, as modeled above, and knits up quickly. Yarns details on Ravelry.


I am no fan of classic rock...but I am watching last night's dvr'd episode of The Sing Off and The Beelzebubs made me like The Who. Seriously, I want this medley on my ipod.

But if they bust out some Rush I might hurt myself trying to fast forward.

Ya'll don't know what it's like to be male middle class & white.

Wait. Neither do I.

Have you been watching Sing Off?!
I would like to have Ben Folds' babies. (too bad he's already married)
Nerdy, sexy and can sing? Yes please. I bet he likes dachshunds too.

Hehosted an a cappella contest in 2008 and then produced an album and mini-documentary from it. You can watch a video about it here.

I feel like I've blogged about this before. If this is a repeat, my apologies. My brain, it is swiss cheese.


Lulu wants to know

Exsqueeze me?

just want do I think I'm doing, taking her photo instead of feeding her? Please note the healing scratch on top of her nose. She did that after being crated for the day. She must have spent all day rubbing her nose against the bars.


Get your Gleek On!

Mark Salling is from the Dallas area. He is going to be there over Christmas (God Bless Twitter). So am I. See, it's Fate! Time to stalk!

(I kid, I kid. No actually stalking will occur)


The other day I was tweaking my photos with Picnik and was able to turn two okay photos into ones that, I think, are now pretty great.


For this photo I used only the Boost feature. It makes the colors really pop.


Lulu's photo uses both the Boost feature and the Vignette features. I like how it creates the soft framing.

There are also premium features available that seem to rival photoshop. I have photoshop on my computer but I have no idea how to use it. If I took more photos Picnik might be something I'd pay for but at this time the free portion works for me. I use the red eye feature often.


Taking a theme a bit too far

It's the Stephen J Colbert Christmas Tree from Treetopia.com

For the Texas Longhorn fans

For the Texas A&M fans



That sound you hear....that's my ovary crying out.
Who doesn't love babies!


Airplane reading

On the flight from Charlotte to Austin I read a couple of magazines but on the way back I read The Art of Racing in the Rain. If you have not read this book, I recommend it. However, let me caution you that if you are the sensitive sort that perhaps it's not the best to read it in public. I spent the entire flight fighting back tears.

Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver. Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn't simply about going fast. Using the techniques needed on the race track, one can successfully navigate all of life's ordeals.

On the eve of his death, Enzo takes stock of his life, recalling all that he and his family have been through: the sacrifices Denny has made to succeed professionally; the unexpected loss of Eve, Denny's wife; the three-year battle over their daughter, Zoë, whose maternal grandparents pulled every string to gain custody. In the end, despite what he sees as his own limitations, Enzo comes through heroically to preserve the Swift family, holding in his heart the dream that Denny will become a racing champion with Zoë at his side.

A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope, The Art of Racing in the Rain is a beautifully crafted and captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life...as only a dog could tell it.


Knitting obsessed

It's true. I have a knitting obsession. Once again, it's nearly midnight and I find myself surfing Ravelry looking for patterns to knit. Never mind that I've not yet knit anything more complicated than a hat.

Last week I stopped in at Anthropologie, to check out their Christmas ornaments, and I fell in love with a scarf. It's not a particularly expensive scarf so really it would be cheaper (and easier, no doubt) for me to just buy it for myself. But no, I think I should try to knit it myself. I found a very similar pattern on Ravelry and I'm certain I could find a suitable yarn. But then I wonder, really, just how many scarves does a girl need?

Home again

That's right, I'm calling North Carolina home.
Home is where you're headed.
That's what I've decided.

Anyway, I wish I had some of these leftovers right about now.

The Spread


Mostly accurate

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Because Lulu is a long haired, I also get a fair amount of "what is that?". Once I did get asked if she was a miniature Irish setter. That was pretty funny.



My Texas Tech snuggie finally arrived in the mail today.
Lulu digs it.

Lulu on Snuggie

And yes, it's basically a big rectangle with sleeves.



Last night I went to Wal-Mart, a place I rarely visit due to PTSD from working there in college (you don't work Back To School and Black Friday to come out unscathed), and was so very excited to find these frozen dinners. Way more excited than I should have been.

Since I'm getting real Mexican food next week (Chuy's here I come!) I exercised some constraint and only bought two. But they are sooooo cheap! $1.80 And quite tasty really.



The other day I bought a container of dark chocolate covered canberries (like raisinets, only not the fruit of Satan, yo) at Trader Joe's.

I. Can. Not. Stop. Eating. Them

But there is fruit under all that chocolate and dark chocolate is good for you. Right? Rationalization. I'm all over that.


Reason # 833 of things I miss about Texas...

photo by pvsbond

Taco Cabana.
Where you can get a bean burrito any damn time you want.

2 am after a night of drinking?
Still open.
Eggs Mexicana hits the spot every time.

10 am after a workout at the gym.

Hot, fresh tortillas and a coke as big as your head. Perfection. And the best part...cheap...oh so very cheap!

I would have killed (okay that is hyperbole) for a bean burrito after working out this morning. Taco Bell, which I hesitate to call their food Mexican but in a pinch it will work, is not open that early.

So now I'm about to gnaw my arm off if I don't get some Mexican food. Because you know cravings just grow, right? I made the mistake of going to Trader Joe's and ended up buying salad fixin's (see, healthy food!) and forty-eleven boxes of cookies (oops, not healthy).

ps...I just looked to see how close I am to a TC (yeah, we're on a nickname basis). Atlanta, 341 miles away! I'll be back in Texas for Thanksgiving but there is just not enough time for me to eat at all my favorite places. Also, I might not fit on the plane if I ate that much.

I Heart Etsy

Seeing as I'm no longer broke, I am having a lot of fun with my Christmas shopping. I have to be careful and not do too much of the "one for you one for me" thing, which can be really difficult, specially when I'm browsing on Etsy.

This morning I ran across this seller, 1canoe2, and she has these really cute state prints. I'm thinking that it would be very cool to have the Texas and the North Carolina prints matted together, side by side, in the same frame.


At the dog park

Lulu met an 8 week old boxer puppy at the dog park yesterday. The puppy was adorable. Lulu was her typical self and let the puppy beat her up.

Boxer puppy beats up Lulu


In the mood...

for Christmas! I've already started a couple of gifts and today I bought this yarn. The woman at the shop asked what I was going to make. No idea. No idea who it's for either but the yarn was calling out to me so I had to buy it.

Cascade Quatro


It only took me a year

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So I've been living in North Carolina for a year now and because I am the lazy it wasn't until today that I finally went to get an NC driver's license. That, my friends, was an exercise in frustration. Finally, after three hours of sitting around in a space that was no doubt full of swirling hamthrax germs (seriously, typhoid Mary was hacking up a lung next to me) I left the office with a piece of paper giving me a temporary license. Big whoopty doo.

In a couple of weeks I'm going to do it all over again when I finally make my car legal and register it in this state. Because they can't make it easy and let you do both at the same time in the same place. Oh no.

You know, I really better live here a long time because if I have to move back to Texas and do this all over again my head might explode.

Searching for a picture to put with this post led me to find this story, which totally cracks me up. A couple of weeks ago I saw a plate that said "KTHXBAI"


Zut alors!

One of my good friends is always jaunting off across the globe and I've always told her that with enough advance notice I'd go with her. The last time we traveled together it didn't go so well, we got stranded in Mexico due to a hurricane, but it's been nearly 10 years since then so I think we try again.

So the other day she casually mentioned that she's going to Paris next fall to attend an interior design show. Would I like to come?

What do you think I said (well actually, it was an email but you know what I mean)?

Time to start saving my pennies!


Large and in charge

I should have known better and gotten a larger size. Lulu wasn't too thrilled about having me shove her head through a turtleneck either.

Lulu's new sweater


What I ate at the Fair

Chocolate covered bacon. Not all that great but not gross. Could have been better.

Dogged a bullet

I rode on this ride at the state fair last week. Frankly, I thought I might die at one point. It looked safe enough, like an easy ride. Yeah, no. My friend shrieked like a little girl. I just closed my eyes and prayed for it to be over.

Anyway, on the news tonight they casually mentioned that a fair worker had to be rushed to the hospital because he fell while taking down a ride today. Guess which ride? That's right, the Flying Bobs.

Don't ask me why it's called that and has a polar bear on it. Things are weird here in North Carolina.


He was no JoJo*

This afternoon I was supposed to have a personal training session at my new gym. What I got instead was a lecture with someone I can only describe as the biggest asshole that I have met in a very long time. If I wanted to talk about my failures and why I'm fat I'd still be in therapy! I just wanted to work out! Tell me how much weight to lift and how many times. Don't lecture me about my eating/drinking/medications (why, yes, you in fact are not a neurologist/endocrinologist and I do in fact need those medications I am on. I don't just take them because I like to swallow pills!)

So after all that he asked me if I was ready to sign up for training sessions with him. Because my momma raised me right (which must be why I didn't just get up and leave) I politely said that I needed to think about it. He asked what there was to think about, why wouldn't I want to train with him? The wounded puppy dog look in his eyes when I said "well, I just don't like you" was almost worth it.

*my awesome trainer in Austin, who not only worked me hard but made me laugh



The other day, at work, while I was once again pricing trash cans (I did not go to design school for nearly 6 years to be sourcing trash cans, but whatever), I ran across this most awesome coat tree. I want it so bad. Too bad it's crazy expensive. If one were handy with a jigsaw it would probably be easy to make yourself.


Let the beatings commence

It always makes me laugh when Jillian, one of the trainers on The Biggest Loser (in case you live under a rock), says she is going to give the contestants a beating.

Well today, after being a lazy slug for over a year, I joined a gym. It is swank. All the cardio machines have televisions on them! The membership comes with a couple of sessions with a personal trainer. Again, something I haven't done in over a year. My first one is on Saturday. I'm pretty sure I'm going to get my ass handed to me.

Snuggie on down!

A couple of weeks ago, a friend spotted this Texas Tech snuggie at the grocery store back in Texas and thought I'd get a kick out of it. Oh I did. More than he could even know. I was telling Kristin about it and, because she is an awesome sister, she found it online and bought me one as a belated birthday present! I can't wait to wear my snuggie while I watch tv and knit.

Don't be jealous of my fabulousness.


Lap creature

Now that it's gotten cold here (current temp on this Sunday afternoon is a lovely, damp 43 degrees) Lulu wants to be in my lap all the time. That can be kind of annoying when I'm trying to surf work on the computer or knit. I've got blogs to read and Christmas presents to make, yo!

Lulu surfs the web


Doesn't this make you want to have some pie?

Courtesy of Pretty*Swell, I now want to go to the NC State Fair even more. Despite the fact that it's going to be in the 40s this evening I may have to venture out to try some pie....and chocolate covered bacon.


Now I get it

I understand now why everyone is always going to the beaches of North Carolina.



That's just a few of my photos...you can only look at so many pictures of the surf, but if you want to see more, just click here


Beach Bound!

After work tonight we're headed out to the beach. I am looking forward to it, even if it does look like I'm packing half my house. We're staying in a huge house (it sleeps 21 people, but there are only 4 of us) and we have to bring our own sheets and toilet paper. The weather seems like it might cooperate, but even if it doesn't I'll still get to sleep in late!

While I'm gone, Lulu will be at the vet/kennel. She doesn't know it yet, but she's getting her teeth cleaned today. Yay! No more ass breath. Unfortunately, that means she couldn't have breakfast. That's just as hard on me as her because she's been hounding me (haha) since about 5:15 to feed her. Lots of whining and jumping on the bed, licking of the hands.



This corn maze is on my way home, practically across the street from where I live, and every day I think to myself that I have got to visit before it's too late. So I was quite pleased to stumble upon this photo on the Cary Citizen website. Now, if I don't make it there, at least I know what it looks like!

Oh and for those of you that don't know, Kay Yow was the head women's basketball coach at NC State.


Getcher fried food on

The North Carolina State Fair opens in 14 days and I can't wait! They might not have Big Tex but they've still got fried food on a stick! And it won't be hotternhell either.


I'm a bad dog mom

So Lulu has this little fabric covered ottoman that she loves. In Austin it was indoors, in the corner of the living room where two windows came together. From that spot she could survey her kingdom (the back yard) and make sure no possums tried to enter it. Here it's on my screened in patio. She likes to sit on it and watch...well who knows what she's watching because the only thing back there is trees. Anyway. The ottoman is covered in Sunbrella fabric, which is supposed to be suitable for the outdoor elements. Yeah, not so much for the dampness that is my patio. There is mold growing on it. I discovered this at least a week ago. The spots are getting larger but have I thrown it away? No.

I need to find her something to replace it. I found this hammock thing, that I think she'll like, and it looks like I can wash it. Christmas is going to come early for Ms. Lulu!


How very Fetching


Finally, after months of only needing to do the thumbs to complete my first non-hat/scarf knitting project....I did it! Now I can move on to other projects. I know some people like to have several things going on at the same time--these are probably the same people that are reading several books at the same time--but I am not one of those people. I am monogamous to my projects. That doesn't stop me from perusing Ravelry and downloading new patterns or lusting after yarn.

ps...do I have really big hands or what? Because I added extra rows and extra cable repeats and they still aren't long enough.


In which I discover I still don't like French toast

So last night, or rather very early this morning, I woke up craving French toast. Normally, I do not like French toast but for whatever reason, at 3am, I was wanting it. So this morning I made some.

Yup, still don't like it.
But I ate it anyway.


Nothing happening here

I have entered my yearly birthday funk and do not feel like doing anything. Can I just hibernate for the next week? Perhaps I will just turn 35 again....

And because I think blog posts without photos are boring, behold my nephew-dog Buford. He's so cute.


Be still my heart

My favorite sun glasses wearing man is back on tv tonight....CSI:Miami starts again.

This is the best time of year, fall tv, I just love it! My dvr is cleared out and ready to go!


New Lulu photos

The weather this weekend was gorgeous so I opened up both the patio doors. Lulu enjoyed that very much.