Monday, May 28, 2007


Thank goodness for backyard gardens! Even though I freqently feel as though I am running to stand still - life really does go on. I love that I have a beautiful garden that reminds me of just this.

Here is a pic of the organic veggie garden a little over a month ago:

Here it is now:

We actually had our first Swiss Chard harvest! Take the ribs off and saute with some garlic & olive oil...Yumbalicious!

These guys in the corner? They are echinacea that seem to have naturalized quite nicely. It is their second year in the bed & I am so pleased by how robust they are!

So far, I've managed to keep the Ruby-Red flowering quince healthy and happy:

And, for the first time, I really think that my ferns are going to make it. It was touch and go last year (the second year they were in the ground) - but now they are looking quite healthy.

This one is an Autumn fern - it changes color going from autumn browns to fern green as it unfolds from its fiddlehead.

I can't remember what these things are called, but if you look closely, you will see these little bumps on the back of the fern leaf. According to my fern-loving sister, these are not heeby-jeeby inducing mites but little indications that the fern is healthy and reproductive. So, if you are in the market for a fern - don't shy away from these creepy-bumpy looking ones. They are the ones that you WANT!

Woo Hoo! I've found a fern-happy spot in my backyard. And, what that means is - yup - more ferns to come!

Here's to a healthy, fruitful, sweet weekend full of reminders that even when you may feel stagnant and not making progress - life does go on. Beautifully so, sometimes. (You know that I'm talking to myself here, right?)

Ten Memorial Day Weekend Highlights

1 - A rousing game of Die Siedler Von Catan. This is truly a gamer's game that we've been playing for years with our bestest buds. None of us are "gamers" in the stereotypical sense - but for whatever reason - the four of us glommed on to this game and it is never a dull moment when trading sheep for wheat. (I was in the lead for a respectable period early on, thankyouverymuch).

2 - Rediscovering a LONG lost Radiohead cd (missing for a good few years). I've since ripped it to my ITunes - never to leave my side again. Welcome home, my love. BTW, I just read that Phil Selway turned 40 this month. Cool.

3 - Free & borrowed books from the library

The best of the bunch is Waiting for Daisy, by Peggy Orenstein. I randomly picked it up along with all of the yarn-eye-candy books that I planned on only scanning for the pretty pictures. Then my friend asked me yesterday if I'd heard of the book - she was going to buy it for us to share. I cracked the spine moments after we got off the phone and now I'm halfway finished. What a luxury it is to stick your nose in a book all afternoon, but I digress. If you've been the unfortunate recipient of infertility "treatment", then this book may just be right up your alley.

Here's one little snippet I borrowed from Amazon:

"Clomid was my gateway drug; the one you take because, Why not -- everyone's doing it. Just five tiny pills. They'll give you a boost, maybe get you where you need to go. It's true, some women can stop there. For others, Clomid becomes infertility's version of Reefer Madness. First you smoke a little grass, then you're selling your body on a street corner for crack. First you pop a little Clomid, suddenly you're taking out a second mortgage for another round of in vitro fertilization (IVF). You've become hope's bitch, willing to destroy your career, your marriage, your self-respect for another taste of its seductive high."

Becoming hope's bitch? Well said.

I'm pretty sure that there is a happy ending because the inside flap indicates that this family does end up with the child "Daisy" that they've been "Waiting" for - and amazingly their marraige remains intact. (If you know the ending - shhh! - don't tell. I want to be pleasantly surprised).

Ok, more Highlights from the weekend....

4 - Stephanie's Strawberry Spinach Salad Recipe. Yum!

5 - Meeting with a favorite blogger family, and anticipation of meeting with another very soon!

6 - Foraging baby-things for my neice from the treacherous hallway closet where it is all hidden from sight.

7 - Season Finale (& Beach Day) of The Office on TIVO!! Subsequent tears from laughing.

Has anyone else experienced firewalking?

8 - Potential quilt pattern for my coveted QuALT fabrics.

9 - Four Glorious Days Off from Work!!!!

10 - Final highlight, of course, Iris.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sometimes Dreams Really Do Come True

I had a dream.

And, it came true.

Genesis has reunited and will be touring in North America Fall 2007. First time in 15 years!

Jzboy almost had to take me to Paris to see the show this summer...then we heard that they were coming across the Pond. (I suppose we'll tuck that unspent money away for our China trip sometime in the next decade).

Last time I saw Genesis was in high school. My boyfriend at the time stood in line for hours and got us tickets in the Fifth row - CENTER!!! It was one of my fondest teenage memories! I've always said that if there was one last concert that I could go to - it would be Genesis. I'll admit it, yes, I ((heart)) Phil. Not his recent, random Disney stuff - the old stuff - the brass section, the drums, the know, like Abacab. Paperlate and Silver Rainbow.

Thank goodness my husband gets it. He's with me. I mean, we played Genesis as our first dance at our wedding - and it was the perfect tune for us. For whatever reason, the band has always touched my heart. And, of course, the music takes me so easily back to a different time. When life was shiny and new - when standing in Fifth Row/Center with your boyfriend to see your favorite band was the most mind blowing experience EVER.

This seems to be the summer of reunion tours: Genesis, Aerosmith, the Police, (Van Halen cancelled their tour because Eddie went into rehab), Smashing Pumpkins, Rush, Rage Against the Machine and Roxy Music with Bryan Ferry!

For now, we're in with tickets to see Genesis. Who knows how the rest of 2007 will unfold.

What are you seeing this summer?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Dear Pearl S. Buck

(Please read this with a good-spirited King James haughtiness....)

Dear Pearl S. Buck,

As I drove hither and thither on my daily commute...I was wooed and, actually, quite smote by the words of your fine work The Good Earth. How now, thought I with great consternation, could this novel have been skipped by me all of these years? I rebuke myself and my English teachers for this oversight.

Pardon my pretty petulance and impudent attitude toward other authors, but what novel could possibly follow yours? Am I just drawing a blank or merely being indolent? I believe that you have sundered my perspective - you harlot! I am not want to use such strong language ordinarily - but have been feeling peevish of late.

Perhaps I'll simply slake my hunger with sweet meats.

(haha, I crack myself up!)

Seriously....I LOVED this book. I did listen to it on cd and was entranced. The language was old skool and a large part of what I enjoyed. Pearl S. Buck is a literary rockstar...not to mention quite a pioneer in the world of international adoption. She established Welcome House, Inc., the first international, interracial adoption agency in 1949. She also adopted nine children with her second husband, Richard J. Walsh. Cool lady.

Check out the book if you haven't already.

Next cd-book in the car.....Bee Season.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Happy Bee Day!

After nearly a month in China - Emme Lu comes home with her parents.

Holding a dear thought for all of you.


Monday, May 14, 2007

Honoring Tha' Day

I spent part of Mother's Day morning burning a cd of my favorite Missy Elliott tunes for a friend. As I did so, I surprised myself when I realized how very appropriate this activity was. Missy Elliott, a quadruple threat: rapper, singer, songwriter and producer is on my list of favorite, very cool strong women. She has chartered new territory in a field that is male dominated...and she Works It.

Missy doesn't have children that I am aware of, but I do find her to possess authentic Mother-Energy. Over the years she has nurtured other artists, gathered people together, spoke out on behalf of others and has become a strong, competent, honest female icon in a world of sleezy, booty-baring PopTarts.

As is my style, I started trippin' on my thoughts about this Mother-Energy and where I cultivate it in my own life. Areas that I gravitate to are: mothering the earth as I garden, nurturing others as part of my work, caring for friends and family in need, creating delicious food and meaningful art/craft to nourish my soul and never giving up hope that one day I will sharpen my focus on said Mother-Energy when our long-awaited child enters our lives.

I hope to be a mother that creates adventure and fun in our life as a family. When I reflected upon how to honor Mother's Day 2007 - I decided that it was time for an adventure for Jzboy and I. What could be better than reservations at a killer Hot Pot restaurant for Sunday? Our first Hot Pot experience. No way I was going to be all mopey with Hot Pot plans on the brain.

This place is called "Little Sheep" and apparently has over 700 locations in China! Some of my Canadian friends may be familiar with it because there are a handful of places up there. Our little place is the first US restaurant. How lucky are we?

Jzboy and I felt just a little closer to China on Sunday seeing as we were two of the only Caucasian people in the place. It would have been nice to know some Chinese phrases so we could have asked the kids next to us what they were having. We did pretty well because the waiter was very nice and helpful.

See how the pot is divided? One side is mild and the other is very, very spicy.

Here is the array of ingredients that we chose. Fresh leafy veggies, tofu, noodles, shrimp and the "mushroom platter". Oh yeah, and fish balls!!! Yuuuum!

The two of us had big ol' grins as we rolled ourselves out of there last night.

Adventure with Jzboy, tofu and shrooms for dinner, Missy Misdeameanor on the radio and dreams of sharing Chinese culture and cuisine with our child to be...I'd say that it was a very, very nice Mother's Day indeed.

PS - BTW, Mother's Day also commemorates the fact that we've been logged in w/ the CCAA for One Year.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007


This random meme was lifted from Stephanie's Emma Bug Blog ...please join in on the fun if you feel so inclined...

1. What bill do you hate paying the most? Damn, they are all equally difficult to *want* to pay.

2. Where was the last place you had a romantic dinner? In my own home.

3. Last time you puked from drinking? Hoo boy - maybe in college?

4. When is the last time you got drunk and danced on a bar? Only in my dreamz, actually, but when I watch MTV's Real World, I wonder if I missed out on something?

5. Name of your first grade teacher? Miss Johnson. I always thought that she was strange b/c it seemed as though her knees were on backwards.

6. What do you really want to be doing right now? Rocking my child to sleep.

7. What did you want to be when you were growing up? A Five-Star-General of the Army like Douglas MacArthur. Only to make my father proud, to be honest. After I became a pacifist, however, I wanted then to become a helper like, Marie Curie.

8. How many colleges did you attend? Three.

9. Why did you choose the shirt that you have on right now? Because I liked the color and because it went with brown - my favorite work-related color.

10. GAS PRICES??? Painful.

11. Where would you move if you could move anywhere? Either Paris, France...if we are talking International...or Austin, TX...if we are talking domestic.

12. First thought when the alarm went off this morning? When will I wake b/c a baby needs me vs. my longstanding vocational committment?

13. Last thought before going to sleep last night? Did I remember to record 24?

14. Favorite style of underwear? Non-Creeping. Nice color. Easy to launder.

15. Favorite style of underwear for the opposite sex? Boxies.

16. What errand/chore do you despise? Pumping gas.

17. If you didn't have to work, would you volunteer? Yes. Red Cross.

18. Get up early or sleep in? Early. Much easier on the weekends, I've found.

19. What is your favorite cartoon character? Felix the Cat.

20. Favorite thing to do at night with a girl/guy? Make a fabulous dinner together. Especially when someone else agrees to washing the dishes.

21. Have you found real love yet? Yeppers. I mean...Yeeeessshhhh (watch The Office, anyone?)!

22. When did you first start feeling old? Oh boy. Probably around 35...when "the eggs" start going to shit.

23. Favorite 80's movie? ValleyGirl...for totally.

24. Your favorite lunch meat? I used to LOVE Liverwurst. Sometimes I wonder if I'd still love it, with onions and mustard, that is. But, I gave such things up ages ago.

25. Beach or lake? Beach, for sure. White sandy, Mediterranean beaches. Lovely.

26. Do you think marriage is an outdated ritual? No.

27. Who from high school would you like to run into? My counselor. Jose Palomo. We had a great rhyme for him:

We Can See Your Musta-a-a-che Through the Snow"

28. Movies or Documentaries? Spike Lee...perfect combination, IMO.

29. The Cosby Show or the Simpsons? South Park.

30. Worst relationship mistake that you wish you could take back? Britney and Kevin.

31. Do you like the person who sits directly across from you at work? Yes.

32. If you could get away with it, who would you kill? I'm not up to killing. Maiming, yes. Killing, no.

33. What famous person(s) would you like to have dinner with? Kevin Smith. Martha Stewart. Tim Gunn.

34. What famous person would you like to sleep with? None. Too much paparazzi, of course.

35. Have you ever had to use a fire extinguisher for its intended purpose? Nope.

36. Last book you read for real? The Kiterunner. Fabulous. Absolutely.

37. Do you have a teddy bear? Not right now. But, I am making many.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

42 Strong!

I'm so bummed, I had to delete my Sexy Ugly post b/c all of my pictures disappeared! Somehow, overnight, they all turned into blue "?"s. Maybe I had too many attractive bad-boys in one place? Maybe the Blogger police got me? Who knows.

Darn it! I was really enjoying those pics.

Oh well, I suppose that now is as good as any for a Bai Jia Bei Update....

I finally finished my most recent batch of 17 squares:

It took me a while to get to the appliqued curved part in my assembly line for this batch. Now that I've got a couple of new sewing projects waiting in the wings, I have revitalized motivation. (Irena, Jen, Nat, Kaye, Jody...see anything that you recognize??) These fabrics came from as far away as New York City, Oklahoma, Florida, Wisconsin and one was even sent to me from Norway!

Here is the stack of...drumroll please...FORTY TWO blocks that I have completed thus far. Only 35 (or more, depending on my stamina) to go and the Bai Jia Bei will be nearing its next stage of construction. I may have to join a quilting group at that point to get some help from the real quilt ladies.

Finally, I leave you with one of many rays of sunshine experienced around here this weekend. My peony opened up!

You don't see too many of these around here, so getting mine to bloom is a huge treat!

Here's to stitching and blooming!