Friday, September 28, 2007

on this date

Today is battlemaiden's 5th birthday. I think that warrants a little jaunt down memory lane, don't you?

Five years ago...

...I still lived in Cleveland.
...I got married but I was not in love.
...I missed my family a lot.
...I occasionally chatted with Ryan on-line.
...Matt and Julia visited me all the time. library was half of what it is today.
...I had three cats instead of two.
...all my blog posts were titled with lines from Tori Amos songs. I am much less obsessed these days.
...I still had the same computer I use now at home, but without all the upgrades Ben has since installed for me. income was a little more than half of what it is now.
...I did the majority of the cooking. Now I have a nearly-gourmet meal prepared for me almost every night!
...I did the majority of the house-cleaning. I still do that.
...I did not know how to knit or crochet.
...I still kept in touch with people who I don't even think about now.
...I hadn't yet met Kirk and Kristi or made regular trips up to the beautiful North Country here in New York State.
...I talked all the time about how much I loved Rochester. (Now, whenever I mention Cleveland, Ryan tells me he thinks I should move back there.)
...I didn't have a regular birding buddy.
...I was a registered Democrat. That hasn't changed.
...I lived in the suburbs, rather than the city.
...I didn't have Harley yet.
...I went to the library a lot more than I do now.
...I watched a lot more TV than I do now.
...I ate fast food several times a month.
...I was still a size 4/6 and weighed 115 lbs.
...I was less happy with my self-image, less confident, less secure in my own convictions.

I'm sure I could go on and on and on, but I won't. Here's to another 5 years.

Monday, September 24, 2007


I have to post about this:

A few weeks ago I was listening to The World Cafe on NPR, when the song One Crowded Hour by Augie March came on. Immediately I thought, "Holy crap, Jeff Buckley has been resurrected from the dead." In any event, it's a good song.

Friday, September 21, 2007

catching up

Boy, this has been a busy week! Here are a few blog-worthy items I feel like sharing:

I ended up getting to bed rather late on Tuesday night, because I started work on that blanket I mentioned in my previous post.


I received another comment from the people at Method on my post about my o-mop handle breaking off. Since I never got my replacement, the kind woman at Method said she would Fed-Ex me one ASAP. Nice.

Additionally, after a 9 hour work day, I had to hustle out to Victor for a 2-hour committee meeting on the dedication of our new church building. I didn't get home until after 9 p.m. Ryan had already gone to band practice, but he left me a hot dinner to eat so I wouldn't have to have cereal, or worse yet, cook myself something. He's the greatest.

We celebrated Kirk's birthday at The Olive Tree last night. The sampler starter platter of Taramosalata (really scrumptious red caviar), Tzatziki, Hummus and Skordalia dips was awesome, as were the dolmades. I ordered a braised Tilapia dish; everyone else went with some variation of Moussaka.

There was some talk of bowling after dinner, but a few of us have been feeling a little under the weather. We may do the bowling tonight, instead. All in all, it was a relaxing evening of al fresco dining on the patio with terrific food and our close friends. What more could one ask for?

According to a co-worker of mine, this morning I apparently sounded like I'm having a bad day today. So, what happened? He brought me a bouquet of daisies, a box of Tazo Sweet Cinnamon Spice tea, and a bar of Lindt milk chocolate. I had no idea he could be so thoughtful.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

autumn approaches

The nights have cooled considerably. The heat came on the other day, and in the mornings when I retrieve the paper, the dampness and smell of the air is different. The transition to Autumn for me is more mysterious than its Vernal counterpart.

Not only does this mean Fall bird migration, pumpkins, hiking under the changing leaves, digging out my wool sweaters from the cedar chest, it also means that I've got the crochet itch once again. I don't pick up my crocheting much during the warmer months, but when it's chilly out, there's something serenely comforting about having my crochet work on my lap, a cat curled up next to me, and a mug of steaming tea after dinner in the evenings while Ryan watches hockey.

Here's what I've chosen for my next project, which is going to be a striped blanket for the spare bedroom futon:

Thursday, September 13, 2007

bird heaven

Holy mother-lode.

I don't know how I missed this site before, but I've recently discovered it. A quick search for "birds" returned hundreds of pages. *Pant, pant* I won't even tell you what I got when I searched "bird" and "book" (my 2 favorite things).

Check out all the hand-made goodies! I am envisioning gifts galore for friends and family, collecting some creative ideas. After all, Christmas is just around the corner.

Monday, September 10, 2007

i'm a stickler for enunciation

I LOVE this song that's being played in regular rotation on WBER lately. Except for the part that goes "why don'tchewlike me?". It drives me totally nuts in this instance, but it's still a fun song to sing along with in the car.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

method = bad PR

Back in June, I left a comment on ljcfyi's post about new Method products that mentioned how the handle on my recently acquired O-Mop had snapped right off after only a few times of use. Not long after, this comment appeared on my blog:

Hope you don't mind me following you from LJC's blog. I just read that your omop handle broke! That sucks!
if you email she can set you up with a new one, stat.

So, I sent the e-mail along with this photo of my broken O-Mop. The reply e-mail I received was:

No Problem,

What you’ve sent is perfect. I’ll send the coupon today. It will cover the cost of a new omop starter kit at Target.

Thanks, and if there’s anything else I can do please let me know,

That was at the beginning of July. Here it is September 8th, and still no coupon for my replacement O-Mop.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

if facts are the seeds...

The September/October issue of Audubon Magazine reviews several new books about Rachel Carson, someone in whom I have a special interest.

Rachel Carson has often been called the mother of the modern environmentalist movement. Her most famous book, Silent Spring, cited the dangers of chemicals and pesticide sprayings. Written 45 years ago, that book was a landmark, and my inspiration for switching to all earth-friendly household products like laundry and dish detergent, shampoo, etc. Today, we are still fighting (and losing) that battle.

In 1950, my grandfather and Rachel Carson both won the AAAS-George Westinghouse Science Writing Award for excellence in science writing. My grandfather, who at the time was a journalist for the Democrat & Chronicle, won the award for his article "Cancer Problem Riddle May Be Discovered in Carrots, Coconut Milk"* from the September 24, 1950 issue.

I remember my mother telling me a story about he and my grandmother flew out to wherever the ceremony was held - L.A., or Vegas, or somewhere out West, for a very glitzy, glamorous affair. They also got to meet Rachel Carson.

The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe around us, the less taste we have for destruction. -Rachel Carson, 1954
*End note: A few months ago, I tried e-mailing the Democrat & Chronicle for a copy of my grandfather's article. I never received a response. If anyone out there has an idea of how I can get a hold of an article from 1950, please let me know.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

finally getting things done

On my day(s) off, I rarely sit around and do nothing, and this past Labor Day weekend was no exception.

Ryan and I finally got up into the attic to clean up the mess the roofers left behind. (Note: the photo to the left is not of our actual attic, although it is similar.) Once we had surveyed the area and assessed what we needed to do, the whole project took less than an afternoon. This included sweeping, vacuuming, ripping out old carpeting, and making fun of how each other looked wearing a dust mask. Among the various and assorted sundries we unearthed, we found: Legos, puzzle pieces, cigarette butts, broken glass, nails and staples of all kinds, a pair of little kid underwear, someone's Power of Attorney form, and a Medicaid brochure from 1967.

Sunday, September 02, 2007


I have a bunch of pointless blog posts waiting to be published: one about the new bike I got, one about the good music they only play once in a while on WBER (usually on New Wave Wednesdays), one about going up to the cottage last weekend.

None of that matters now.

I've entered a mode of self-re-evaluation. What do I really want out of life and my relationships? I'm not eating right. I'm not exercising enough. I'm not getting enough "me time." I'm losing sight of why I'm doing some of the things that used to bring meaning into my life.

Sometimes I feel like I've gotten myself stuck in such a deep rut that the only way to get out of it is to do some major re-creating.