I was tagged, the other day, by none other than Ms. Jo Beaufoix. Its a lovely tag. A creative tag. I am to come up with six interesting facts about pygmy elk.
She could not have tagged a better girl. For I am well versed in the pygmy elk. I was raised with them. That is a little known fact. Aunt Tuna was a great fan of the pygmy elk, and if you didn't look where you were going in our house, you'd probably end up with an elk antler shoved up your arse.
They even shared my baths with me. Which leads me to my first fun fact.
1. Pygmy elk Love love love baths. With Mr. Bubbles bath soap in them. It has to be Mr. Bubbles. Calgon takes them away.
I discovered that Calgon thing the hard way one Sunday evening, when my favorite pygmy elk, Rainbow, went down the drain with the Calgon.
2. Pygmy elk hate peas. Which made it very difficult for me to sneak them my peas at the dinner table. Matter of fact, they used to make me eat THEIR peas. My least favorite pygmy elk, Bilbo, did this frequently. I won't eat a pea to this day.
on to fact #3.
Pygmy elk like to play dress up. The fancier the dress, the better. We once had a pygmy elk, Fiona, who used to not go out the door each day until we put her in her kilt and tam. She just wasn't happy until that happened.
4. Pygmy elk use kleenex when they sneeze. And its a good thing, or we could all catch the dreaded disease pygmy elkitis. Little known fact? I used to have another sister, lets call her, uh, maisie. Maisie got sprayed with elk snot, and she was dead, 2 days later. But we couldn't tell the authorities, or they would have taken away our elk.
5. Their favorite sports team are the Mighty Ducks. Yes, they watch Hockey. Incessantly. Just ask Gretzky. He has pygmy elks of his own.
6. Pygmy elks hog the bed your trying to share with them. It's an antler thing.
So there you go. 6 Facts about Pygmy elk. Don't say I never taught you anything. Now, if I followed rules (which I generally DON'T)
I'd tag 6 others. I am not going to do so. If you want to play, then I will follow Jo's fine example and ask you to give me six facts about....
towering giant ferrets.
yeah. thats it.
Oh, and as a bonus, here is a pygmy elk fact from MM.
They are afraid of falling leaves. They view them as predators...
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
I had this post. It was all written out, and even scheduled.
But I deleted it.
It was about cheating. But I need to think on it more, I think. I couldn't manage to phrase it succinctly enough tonight. I hate it when that happens.
So I will cheat (ha ha)
and ask you.
What defines it?
how many different kinds of cheating are there? (I can think of 3, immediately).
Is it ever okay?
I know none of you are speculating this, but I will say it anyhow, because it bears saying.
This has nothing to do with my present life. Things are fabulous with MM and I. I watched a movie today that involved cheating, is all. It got me thinking...
Monday, July 28, 2008
by the letter H
this the view from inside my hammock. Where I am swinging. And Cheese is attempting to climb in with me.
I have a 'live wire' again.
and the weather is halfway decent, the sky is not filled with smoke.
So you will all excuse me while I relax, yes?
For tonight, I work again....
and we are short staffed....
Saturday, July 26, 2008
My sweet girl, Mocha, was resting at my feet this morning. Appeared to be sleeping. Occasionally, I was getting kisses on my feet.
Except she wasn't sleeping.
She was chewing the power cord to my Mac in half.
So, Until I get another one, probably Monday if the internet gods are kind to me, I will be MIA. I only have 31% of my battery left.....
Mo just had the unmitigated gall to chew through MM's connection wire for his desktop as well. So when my 20 % battery is finished, so are we. Until MM goes to work and gets another wire, and my Fed-ex arrival of my battery charger.
Grrr. Chewy puppies.......
Posted by mielikki at 4:50 PM
Angus tripped through the bracken, swearing under his breath at the circumstance he found himself in. His kilt catching on a bramble barely slowed him down as he moved through the hills of Inverness. He'd been enjoying his bedsport with Seana, until her husband came home, that was. She'd married the wrong man, and she knew it well. Unfortunately, her husband was a large blacksmith with a heavy hammer, and hot on Angus' heels.
Looking over his shoulder, he quickened his pace, hoping he could outrun the man. In the dark of night, he saw a wee speck of light, and aimed for it. Sooner than he thought possible he was at the source of light. Squinting, he read the sign
"Ye olde Tyme Travel Inn".
MMMph, he said, wondering, if there was a hidey hole for him here. Hearing the bark of a dog, and the crunch of footsteps, he decided there was. Hurrying, he ran in, past the startled innkeeper, through the tavern, and up the stairs. Frantically, he tried the doorknobs to every room. No luck, until he reached the end of the hallway, and found a door marked curiously. Stopping briefly, he examined the marking. It was a box of some sort, with an apple carved in it. Curious about it, but lacking the time to consider it, he ran through the door, and straight into confusion.
Katie started at the loud noise she heard coming out of her boss' office. She'd only been working at the MacTavish firm for a few weeks, and she had yet to meet the man who was her boss. She'd been typing memo's and letters for him since her arrival. She was not aware that he was in the office today, which is why the noise had startled her so. Tentatively, she approached his door, and knocked softly. The door swung open, and she gasped in surprise at what she saw inside. Sprawled across the desk was a tall, red headed man, in a kilt. At her startled squeak, his head turned towards her, his blue eyes looking dazed and confused.
"He's gorgeous" she thought, bemused at the sight of him, on top of his desk.
"I am Katie" she said, bustling over to him, "your secretary. Is there anything I can assist you with, Mr. MacTavish?"
"How does she ken my name?" thought Angus, his vision starting to clear. Looking around him, he was startled to notice he was laying on top of a table, with various writing implements strewn around him, and another one of those mysterious boxes with an apple carved onto it. Standing in front of him was a female, one of the prettiest he'd ever seen. Raven black hair, big green eyes. He also noted her well shaped body, and, to his embarrassment, his kilt rose of its own accord. Softly swearing, he rolled off the desk in one fluid movement, and stood behind it. Tall as he was, though, it didn't help. Abruptly, he sat down in the chair. Frowning, he pushed a few of the buttons on the box, and watched it spring to life.
Wonder flowed across his face as he saw what the box could do. Tearing his gaze away from it, he looked at the woman. "Katie" he said softly. "How did I get here, lass?"
"Well, I am assuming you flew, Mr. MacTavish" she answered, wondering what, exactly, was wrong with her new boss.
"I flew?" he asked, eyes wide in shock. In his mind, he had a vision of himself, with wings, flying to wherever it was he'd landed.
"I should be more tired then" he said.
Katie laughed, nervously, sure her new boss was joking with her. "Good one, Mr. MacTavish" she said.
"Call me Angus" he said, uncomfortable with her calling him Master. (At least that's what he thought she was saying).
"Tell me again, lass, just who are ye to me?" he asked her, confused.
"Your secretary" she answered patiently, sure that he was experiencing jet lag. "Did you just come back from Scotland? Your accent is very nice".
"My accent?" he thought. Then he said "Wait, am I not still IN Scotland?" Where am I?"
"You're in America. San Jose, California, to be exact" she said. "Should I call your doctor? Have you hit your head?"
Nay, dinna call for anyone" he answered rubbing his temples. I have nay hit my head. I am just weary, and I would like to go home."
"Of course. I will call for your car" she said, backing out of the office. Angus watched in curiosity as she picked up a black, tiny square, and spoke into it. "Who is she talking to?" he wondered, watching as she put the thing down, and came back to him. "Your car will wait for you out front" she reported. Mechanically, he stood up, and smoothed his kilt down. Walking out the door, he found himself in yet a bigger room.
"Erm, could ye take me to what you mean?" he asked her, worried.
"Of course" she said.
Wondering what sort of crazy her boss was, Katie walked him to the waiting limo that she'd been told always took him through town. The driver, Daryl stepped out and smiled a bright smile.
"How are you today, Mr. Angus?" she said.
"He isn't quite himself today......" answered Katie.
To Be Continued, because, frankly, I don't know what is going to happen yet myself.....
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Meet Zelda. She grew up in a wealthy, yet prim household in Alabama. Even when she was a child, her racy behavior was a common subject of Montgomery gossip.
She was known as a fearless child, spoiled by her mother, and fathered by a stern, remote man. She did not perform well in school, with her failing grades and her careless attitude.
She met Scott Fitzgerald right before the end of world war I. He resented the fact that she was dating other men, she envied him his writing ability and considered him to be weak and indecisive. There were married in the late 1920's. Rivalry festered during their marriage, punctuated by his alcoholism, and her mental deterioration. She was eventually given the diagnosis of schizophrenia. Both of them drank very heavily throughout the '20's.
They originally settled in NYC, and after Scott achieved fame as a writer, they travelled extensively, mostly to Europe. They were constantly in the press.
The parties and copious amounts of alcohol took a toll on their health, and their relationship with each other. The squandered money on things like having their own private bootlegger. While living in Paris Scott began a friendship with Ernest Hemingway. Zelda disliked him from the first, describing him as "phoney as a rubber check". She became convinced that the men were having a homosexual affair. She once, in her jealousy threw herself down a flight of stairs, because Scott was talking to Isadora Duncan.
They had one child, Frances "Scottie" Fitzgerald, who was mostly raised by nannies. Zelda had at least one affair with a french pilot. She wrote many short stories, but they were published under Scott's name. He, himself, used Zelda in many of his stories. He frequently quoted from her personal diaries, and she, in turn, would accuse him of plagiarism.
Zelda became very bored in their marriage, and felt isolated. Scott was determined to keep her home, afraid she would have an affair. She became obsessed with becoming a professional ballet dancer, and apparently had the talent to do it. He discouraged it, and it was too late for her to accomplish her goal, though she practiced up to eight hours a day. Not able to handle it, she had a breakdown, and began to exhibit elements of obsessive-compulsive disorder. She was eventually admitted into a french sanitorium She spent the last eighteen years of her life in various stages of mental distress. During her periods of lucidness, she would write, and paint. She died in 1948, while she was writing her second novel. A fire burnt down the sanitarium she was in in Asheville, North Carolina. Scott had died in 1940, of a heart attack.
* I don't know why I chose Zelda for this. But I never said my mieographies would be about happy, strong women.... this story was kind of tragic. I always wondered if she inspired Daisy, in the Great Gatsby. I am betting so....*
Posted by mielikki at 8:49 PM
Or is it Insanity?
I am going with Insanity.
Last night, we went out, into the Wilds of a teeny tiny town near to us in Nirvana City, to look at puppies. Whippet/Aussie Shepard mixes.
What ended up happening is epic to our now expanded household.
Instead of US choosing dogs
Dogs chose us.
It started out with "Cheese". Yes, his name is Cheese. He came to us, immediately, realized Mustang Girl was the be all and end all, and showed us what a sweet boy he was. I think we knew pretty quick that we would be taking Cheese home with us.
But Cheese. He has a special friend. His puppy buddy. And I thought she was so beautiful. The dog breeder lady was calling her Chocolate. I had to have her. If she and Cheese are buddies, then, they are a natural choice.... We wanted two dogs, so they'd have company with us gone. So.
then, there was Potter. She WANTED to come too. She DEMANDED to come, too.
And, smart girl she is, she stole Mustang Man's heart. Very quietly I hear him say to me "Maybe we could bring three home".
I just laughed. So we EACH now have a dog.
recipe for disaster.
But the dogs are doing so very well. They were put in a bathroom last night, and did not pee or poop in there at all. They took care of business, and have had a puppy party out in the yard this morning. MG and I just shook our heads, and laughed.
So, here are some pictures. I will post more, and better ones, I am sure, once they decide to hold still!
The Queen is not Amused- Audrey parked herself here, and stood her ground. The pups are still afraid of her....
Potter and Mocha- This is the only pic I could catch of Potter. Her full name? Lillian (Lily) Potter. She was born with a lightning bolt on her neck. Now covered in fur. She is with Mocha in this picture....
Chuck. E Cheese
This is the famous Cheese. The boy of the mix (Potter and Mocha are girls). He has a very strong personality, and likes to investigate everything
Mocha Frappucino- Mocha, or "Mo" for short. This is my girl. She is the most timid of the three, likes to sit back and watch the other two do the dirty work. My kind of dog....
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Imagine my surprise when I went to the mailbox, and found this advertisement?
how did they know that SOON, me, MM and MG were headed to Portland to celebrate all things Tiki?
and, those of you wishing for drunken cousin postcards,(with possible surprise guest additions, send me your snail mail addresses, soon! So far I have Holly, Jo, Syb, Bubblewench and Daryl. And as an added bonus, I will be on Strange Love, Live! the Friday night before the event. If Cami plies me with apple bombs again it could get very lively....
Posted by mielikki at 4:15 PM
David, over at authorblog, poses a very interesting weekend wandering. He wants to know if I have clothing that is over a year old.
I just moved. And packing? Was painful. I am sure all of you, especially those of you who Twitter, were sick of reading my whiny tweets about packing. Hell I was sick of my whiny packing tweets. Though we now own a house, I now also share a closet. No big deal. I can share. And I am not a clothes horse. I do have lots of nursing uniforms, because I hate wearing the same thing all the time to work.
But, what I do have, in my collection, (not in my closet, however, no room)are clothing items from my past.
I still have my highschool letter jacket. Granted, my letter is from band. But I have one. My jacket, in it's red and gold glory. I wore it all winter my senior year. It is still in good condition.
I have my Navy Peacoat. The long one.
I don't wear it. It's too small now. But I like to look at it. I also have one each of my Navy uniforms, a whites, a blues, and a dungaree one. Oh, the memories.
I have the ugly pink dress from my brief foray as a "pink lady" volunteer, before nursing school. (I had to see if I could handle being in a hospital that long). I think I even have one of my old nursing student dentist blue smocks. I also have one of the sweatshirts my Grandfather frequently wore after he had his strokes. It is a "Sweden" one. He was so proud of his swedish heritage.
So I have many things over a year old. And I am sure I will have them a very long time.
Monday, July 21, 2008
(or, if you prefer, a sparkling beermaid).
Mustang Girl rolled back into town this weekend, just in time to work on sorting out her room before she gets busy with highschool. It's her first gander at the new house, filled with our stuff. I am sure it is a little bit of culture shock for her, but she is bearing up, well.
Saturday, we went to eat some good food and spend some time with the usual suspects. Clancy, his wife, and kids were there, I have blogged them before. Whom I have neglected, blog-wise, are the other usual suspects. This particular fun loving, long married couple have 4 children, age ranged from 17 to 4. The youngest is a delightful little girl, (the only girl of their brood). We will call her Myrtle, for not so obvious reasons to the rest of you. (MM will get it, though).
Myrtle is a very precocious, fun loving little thing. With 3 brothers, she has to be tough, too. And she is the apple of her father's eye. I will have to tell the story of how I first met the wee Myrtle. It's hilarious. So excuse me while I go off subject for a moment and tell this.
Myrtle and her family went trick or treating last Halloween with Clancy and his wife, and their brood. Clancy's wife brought all the kids to my door, and a number of them needed to use the facilities. Clancy's kids I recognise, but there was an extra child, dressed as a black cat, tagging along with them. In they came. Less than 5 minutes after, (more like ONE minute)a pounding sounded at my door. I open it, and a man is standing there, looking a bit frantic about the eyes, and he says "do you have my daughter?"
Crap. My mind immediately goes to the wee black cat who came in at the tail end of Clancy's brood. Was she a hitch hiker on the potty train? Did I just inadvertently kidnap a strangers child? "Ummm" says I.
MM sticks his head around the corner, grinning. Hi! he says to the man, who by this time was in my door. Angry father immediately relaxes, realizing his little black cat is in a known home. Out come the bathroom troops, MM and I don shoes, and trick or treat the neighborhood with them. It was fun.
Okay. Back to Saturday. All the kiddo's were outside, the older kids hiding from the younger kids and talking that teenager stuff. The younger kids doing arts and crafts. Clancy's wife brought a plethora of fun. Yarn, face paint, glue, and a big bag of shiny rhinestones. They'd been creating all day. I wandered out with my dinner, and oohed and aaahed over everyones faces, and jeweled creations. Myrtle, more interested in me, than her dinner, decided she needed to use the (non-toxic) glue to glue rhinestones to my face. Making me, at her insistance, a sparkling mermaid. Well who DOESN'T want to be a sparkling mermaid?
So I dispensed the glue, and she went to town. I even had a blue sapphire on the end of my nose. MM came out at one point, but he was sent packing, so that he would be surprised at my sparkling mermaid-ness. At one point, Myrtles Dad came out, with a fresh Guinness for me. (bless the man). When I was all sparkled up to her satisfaction, Myrtle and I traipsed back in to show off my mermaid-ness. I was double fisting the Guinness, as I had not finished the last one. MM, was surprised and in awe of my jeweled sparklyness, and Myrt's Dad tagged me with the sparkling beermaid moniker. Thankfully, no pictures were obtained. (mermaids are shy, you know).
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Stephan had hardly been able to believe his eyes when he'd seen the young woman emerge from the stables, looking very bewildered and frightened. The last time he'd seen her she'd been three years old.
Carefully, he guided her away from the staring crowd, amidst the mutters of wonder, and the search for the man he'd shot. He knew that they would have to leave, and quickly, before the rumors of witchcraft reached the ears of the Queen, and she ordered them arrested. Making their way around, the silent pair completed a large circle, and ended up back where they began, in the stables.
"Do you ride, perchance?" he asked. Mutely, she shook her head, negative. "Merde" he thought. Quickly, he had 2 of his horses saddled. His favorite roan stallion, and a hearty palfrey for her. Unceremoniously, he shoved her up into the saddle, explained how to use the reins, and jumped up on his own horse. They went out the back entrance, and rode away quickly.
After about four hours, he stopped, in a quiet grove, near a river. He helped the shaking girl off her horse, and led her over to the river. "Belinda. How on earth did you get here" he asked, staring into her brown eyes.
"I... I don't know" she stammered. "Who are you? You look like my father!"
"That is because I am your brother" answered Stephan, smiling gently. Her eyes were the same, dark brown of his own. He was surprised she hadn't noticed that.
"My brother, Tim... he's back home" she whispered, in shock. Growing woozy, she started to sway where she stood. Smothering an oath, Stephan caught her, sat her down, and shoved her head between her legs, telling her to breathe. In a moment, she could see again.
"Mom and Dad must have never told you of me, but I somehow thought you might remember me" he said, when she looked at him again. "I was Stephen. Your big brother. Do you not remember at all?"
A myriad of thought fluttered through Belinda's brain. Of ice cream, watermelons, and laughter. Holding a hand, jumping into a pool, with matching water wings on their arms. Roasting marshmallows in the red glaze of a camp fire. "Steven?" she asked, tentatively
"I once was" he answered, relieved she finally remembered him. "Until I wandered away from Mom, one spring day. We had stopped, at the Inn, because she was pregnant, and frantic to use the bathroom. You weren't with us for some reason. I was curious. The door I chose had a beautiful design, and I wanted to see what was on the other side. So I went through. And I have been here ever since.
"Mom gave birth to Tim in a mental institution" said Belinda, sadly. "When they came home, I was told to never speak of that day, or of you. I was simply told you were not coming back. Mom tries, but she has never been the same since."
Stephan lowered his head, and shed a few tears for the woman he barely remembered. He'd been five when he came over. He knew of no other life, but this one.
"We must find the way to get you back" he finally said, brown gaze meeting her gaze.
"You must come with me" she answered back. Mom will be so happy to see you!
"I cannot go back to that time" he said. "My life is here. I have a wife, and children of my own. I would not leave them."
"Why can't they come, too?" she asked, crying again.
"Because, they would never fit in, or be happy in that time. They have not seen cars, or telephones, or even Television" he answered, honestly. "They would never understand. Therefore, you must go back alone. I leave it to you whether or not you wish to tell our mother of me. Now, however, we must ride, for it is another day to my home. Can you handle it?"
"Yes" she said. "I can try".
The brother and sister rode until it was too dark to ride, anymore. Accustomed to being out of doors, Stephan quickly settled the horses, and them, for the night. Early the next morning, they arose, and rode some more. About mid day, they approached a small-ish chateau. Entering the bailey, two small children came running out the door, excitedly calling "Papa! Papa!" Belinda could only stare, because they looked so familiar to her. Following them came a blonde, beautiful woman, whom Stephan kissed, passionately. "Ma belle, this is my sister, Belinda. Belinda, this is Sophie, my wife."
"Enchante" said Sophie, hugging Belinda to her. "How did you get here?"
"All will be explained, away from listening ears" answered Stephan. "But we must find a way to get her home."
"Oui, cher" answered Sophie, eyes widening at the thought.
For weeks, they put their heads together, trying to puzzle out how to send Belinda back to the family. Belinda worried incessantly about her Mom, and how she would deal with losing another child. Each day that went by was torture.
Eventually, though, fate caught up with the brother and sister. The Queen, had indeed started proceedings against Belinda, for witchcraft, and had sent troops to pursue her. On her eleventh day "visiting" she was apprehended, and returned to the Queen's presence. Despite the pleadings of Stephan, she was sentenced to be burned.
Crying in fear, she was lead to her pyre. As they tied her to the stake, she fainted, only to be revived, to face death. Stephan stared bleakly from the crowd, unable to save his baby sister.
As the first flame licked her bare calf, Belinda screamed, and simply ceased to be. People cried out and crossed themselves after she disappeared. Stephan could not help but smile, for he knew where she went.
Years later, Belinda, a grandmother several times over, never tired of telling the tale of her lost brother, and how she got her scar....
Friday, July 18, 2008
Going WAAAAY back for this one.
This is Cynisca. She was a Greek princess of Sparta, and the first woman in history to win at the ancient Olympic games.
She was born in Sparta, in 440 BC, daughter of Archidamus II and Eupoleia. It is said she was a tomboy, an expert equestrian, and very wealthy. She was also known to breed horses. Her name, in Greek, means "female puppy".
Most women in the era of ancient Greece were forbidden to learn any kind of sports, and kept pretty secluded. Spartan women, however, were encouraged to excel at sports, riding, hunting, and to eschew things like house hold chores.
The Olympic games were male only, women could not even get into the main stadium. Cynisca had no choice but to employ men to drive her team at the olympics, where they won in the four horse chariot racing. She was not even there to see her horses run.
She was honored, though, later, by a bronze statue of a chariot and horses, and a charioteer, and also, a statue of herself, placed in the Temple of Zeus, in Olympia, with an inscription reporting her to be the only female to win the wreath in the chariot events of the Olympic Games. She also was the first Spartan woman to have a "hero-shrine" erected of her in Sparta.
The inscription reads
"Kings of Sparta are my father and brothers
Kyniscka, victorious with a chariot of swift-footed horses
have erected this statue. I declare myself the only woman in all Hellas to have won this crown."
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Had no internet services this morning. That sucked.
Then we went to the not local large chain home supply store to pick up our special order screen door. That sucked, too. Especially the asshats who were shopping there who felt it necessary to quiz me on why we were standing in the customer service line (to pick up our door, duh, now F* off). Turns out they were store employees, shopping in the store, and wanted to go in front of us in line. )
Add to that the idiots that are driving around today, and well.
I just am not a fan of most of the human race.
and I have to work tonight. Should be fun.
Posted by mielikki at 3:54 PM
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
I know it is Wednesday, but I bombarded you with pictures yesterday. So today you suffer with my words.
I was sleeping pretty hard yesterday, early afternoon. Work had suuuuuuckeeeeeed the night before. My three cats have, in their desire to make me crazy, learned a new trick. They have learned that by pushing, somewhat hard, against the bedroom door, they can open it, and have free reign of the cat free zone. (New doorknob coming SOON. We needed to install one with a lock, anyhow. AHEM.) In that fugue that is half sleep, irritation at a full bladder, and the denial that I have to get up to deal with it, I hear the door, slowly open. Damnit. "No" I growl, rather loudly, and swing myself to the side of the bed to boot a furry black arse OUT of the cat free zone. Wasn't furry. (much) or black. It was MM. Home. Early. "Oh" I squeak, before he is next to me, kissing me. *Happy*.
The bugger had been in the house for at least 10 minutes, though, being quiet, as I needed to sleep for another nights work. His diabolical plan had been to sneak out again and go run an errand. Except, the papers he needed were in the bedroom. Caught. Ha ha. Much as I tried, after that I couldn't sleep anymore, so I got up.
The treasure, now, was something I didn't want to blog, yet, because, MM frequently frequents my blog. I wanted so to surprise him. To see the look on his face.
A few treasures I have told him, or talked about. The gargoyles. (Holly, pictures coming, I promise). I discovered the rest of them. They are happy to be free. Along with some small, jeweled pewter wizards, dragons and castles I found.
One of my favorite treasures was MM's mom's cook book. I spent quite a bit of time looking through it. It's one of those old, Betty Crocker ones that is very well loved. With hand written recipes falling out everywhere. Heaven, I tell you. I told him, over the phone, that I had found that gem. He was pleased.
What I found, what excited me the most, was that I found his Dad's Navy portraits. The old kind, black and white, one with just that touch of color... Perfect, for over in the hallway/alcove with the old recruiting posters. There were 2 of them. Quicker than quick, I had them framed. I also have MY Dad's Navy portrait. They are now buddies, in the hallway.
And we have a table, built by the MM father. Iron work, wood, abalone. It is a beautiful little table. So one portrait rests on there.
I so wanted to tell him what I found. But more? I wanted to see the look on his face when he came in Wednesday night, and saw his Dad. But he snuck in, while I was sleeping. I missed it. He offered a re-enactment. But I missed the moment.
So I ask him if he noticed. He did, indeed. And is happy to see his handsome father, gracing our walls.
Then he tells me. Somewhere, in the boxes I have not gone into, is his Mom.
More treasure to be found, framed, and displayed. I can't wait.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Here, then, are more pictures, of the house.... boring, right?
this is the view from the living room into the dining room. Kind of dark, I know. Sorry. I just don't have a whole lot of time right now to "play" with my pictures, and adjusting things.
Living room. Those are the new couches, and the rock fireplace is where the new to me Gargoyle is now living with his Notre Dame candle.
this would be the far wall of the living room. It is empty now, but we are wanting to put family pictures on that wall. Possibly all in black and white....
this, then, is the deep seated hallway/alcove. The one I painted blue. I think it goes really well with the 'yosemite sand' that we painted in the living room.
All in all, I am pretty happy with the way all of this is turning out. It is still a work in progress, but I finally feel like I have the upper hand of this whole adventure. Some boxes are left, but nothing that is "major". The books are in the bookshelves, the kitchen is done, stuff is on the walls. Things are getting closer to "normal". I am so glad for that. I could use some normal.
Oh, and for the curious, I Have found, and liberated the remaining gargoyle hostages. They are now happily frolicking in the house, along with a few other prizes I found lurking in MM's boxes....
Monday, July 14, 2008
I have seen this done much, lately, most recently, over at Jo's Place. It looked like fun, so I gave it a whirl.
Go here if you want to make a mosaic of your own. Go to a website where you can get random images for what you are typing in, and copy/paste in the URL's of your answers. It's that easy.
Here then, are the questions, with my answers in parenthesis, and explainations, if needed!
1. Your first name (mielikki. Putting in my real first name kept bringing up pron stars)
2. Favorite food? (chicken)
3. What High School did you attend? (Calaveras. It means Skull, in spanish. Lovely, huh?)
4. Favorite color (green)
5. Celebrity crush? (Swedish Chef. I don't crush on a 'real' celebrity. And I don't want to join the David Tennant fray. You ladies scare me)
6. Favorite drink? (iced tea)
7. Dream vacation? (british isles. All of them, one long, glorious, trip)
8. favorite dessert? (Creme Brulee)
9. What do you want to be when I grow up? (true to myself. And I am)
10. What do you love most in life? (All my "people")
11. One word to describe you? (stubborn)
12. Your blog name (absolutely no pictures came up...)
So there you go, a glimpse of me, in mosaic form....
go play if you want to. If not, have a good Monday, anyhow!
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Belinda rolled over, restless, hot, and cranky. The weather had been close to 100 degrees all week, and, like many others in the recent economy, her family had lost their home four weeks ago. They'd bounced around from cheap hotel to cheap hotel for the first few weeks, but, they were so financially strapped at this point that even cheap hotels were no longer an option.
Sighing, she pulled the stringy, plain brown hair out of her eyes. Her Mom braided it for her each night, yet, it was so fine and light that most of it always escaped the braid. Impatiently, she blew it out of her eyes and looked out the back window of the Durango. They'd been sleeping in it for the last two weeks, parked in the parking lots of various churches in the neighborhood. The sun was just rising, but it was already unbearably hot.
Quietly, she squeezed past her little brother, Charlie, and climbed out through the back window. Being careful not to wake anyone, she made her way half way down the block, to the local gas station that had a public bathroom they all used. The owner had been pretty nice to them, encouraging them to use the facilities as much as they needed. Cleaning herself up as best she could, Belinda sighed at her reflection in the cracked mirror. She'd never liked her hair color, and wished she could change it, like so many of her classmates were prone to do. Critically, she examined her face. "Too skinny" she decided. Her eyes, though, everyone said she had pretty eyes. When she looked them in the eye, that was. Shrugging, she turned away from her reflection, and exited the bathroom. To her chagrin, a group of construction workers were gassing up their trucks outside, and, seeing her, they began to whistle and call rudely.
"Hey pretty girl, looking for a ride?" one of them leered at her. Blushing, Belinda scurried away, amidst their laughter. More than laughter, though, she heard footsteps behind her, following her. "Great" she thought, and quickened her pace.
The man following her grinned as she quickened her pace, eyes alight. He like nothing more than the hunt. He'd been watching this girl for the last few weeks, studying her patterns. Knew that she was from a homeless family, who would not have the slightest clue she was gone. Until it was too late. He watched her try to get away from him, her lithe, youthful body moving quickly, not towards where her parents were, but, up the dusty road, toward's that fleabag hotel, the Time Travel Inn. He gauged her age to be sixteen, or close to it. He hoped she was still a virgin. He liked them better that way. Excitement quickened his pace, which quickened hers. She began to run. So did he. Cursing himself for daydreaming too long, he watched, as she darted into a room with a Fleur de Lys on the doorway. Grabbing the door before it slammed, he jumped at her, growling.....
And found himself, suddenly, laying on hard earth, with a mouth full of soiled hay. Spitting it out he cursed again. "Merde!"
Then, "where did that come from?" he wondered. He'd never heard, nor used that word before. Studying his surroundings, he saw a young girl, resembling the one he'd just been chasing fly out of the door in front of him, now dressed in a floor length, frilly dress, her hair now clean and curly. Looking down, he saw he was now dressed in rough spun clothing. And it STANK. Getting up, he was surprised to see he was in a stable....
Belinda kept running, despite the heels she now found her feet in. She'd run through that door, at that hotel, desperate to get away from that man who'd been chasing her. But the dark room had turned, inexplicably, into something more. Turned HER into something more. Looking over her shoulder, she noted the man was gone. For the moment. She'd seen him in the stable. Changed as well. She slowed down, to a walk, coming into a crowd of people. Smoothed her dress, which was a deep, peacock blue, she noted. A man came to her side, bowing. "Mademoiselle", he intoned, gleam in his dark brown eyes. "Might I accompany you to luncheon?"
"Non!" choose me! answered another man, this one blonde, with summer blue eyes, rushing to her side. "Giles, you cur, leave her alone" snarled the dark eyed man. "She is mine"
"Not in your wildest dream, Stephan" answered the other, drawing a pistol. Belinda gasped as the brown eyed man gently shoved her aside, facing the blonde man, who had also drawn a pistol.
The man in the stables circled slowly around the 2 men with guns, eyes still on the girl. She was to blame for this, somehow, he knew. He now wanted her more than ever, just to see if he could somehow return them both to the place they'd left. THEN, he would deal with her. What he failed to notice, was that the dark eyed man had indeed seen him. As he lunged for Belinda, he felt the agonizing pain of gunshot tearing through his chest, and he fell.... not onto the grass of earth, but to the cold, stinky carpet of a hotel room. The life left his eyes as his breath left in a sigh.
Belinda could only sit, and stare, at the space where the man should have fallen. Wrapping his arm around her, Stephan, the brown eyed man kissed her brow, and whispered "Come, cheri. We must talk". Numbly, she followed him....
Friday, July 11, 2008
for the naughty campers:
Meet Juliette Gordon Low. Founder of Girl Scouts. (I so think she would have gone to Naughty Camp if she could.)
She was born on Halloween of 1860 in Savannah, Georgia. Her family refered to her as "Daisy", she was the second of 6 children. As a young girl, she was known to be sensitive, and talented, with a lifetime interest in the arts. She wrote poetry, acted in plays, sketched, painted, and sculpted. She had many pets, but was especially fond of mockingbirds, and dogs. They say she also had a very good sense of humor.In her teens, she attended boarding school at the Virginia Female Institute in Staunton, Va. She later attended a French finishing school in New York City. In 1886, she married William Low, a wealthy Englishman. She spent much time traveling between the British Isles, and the US.
Unfortunately for Juliette, she had suffered from many chronic ear infections. She lost most of the hearing in one ear because the treatment she was provided was improper. At her wedding, a grain of "good luck rice" got lodged in her ear, puncturing the eardrum, resulting in infection, and total loss of hearing in that ear.
During the Spanish-American war, Juliette came back to America to aid in the war effort. She and her mother organized a convalescent hospital for the wounded soldiers returning from Cuba. At the end of the war, she returned to England, however, her marriage had disinigrated. Her husband died in 1905, while they were seperated.
After this, she spent several years searching for something useful to do with her life. In 1911, she met Sir Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of Boy Scouts and Girl Guides. Becoming interested in this, she channeled her energies into this movement. She came back to the United states and announced to her cousin "I've got something for the girls of Savannah, and all of America, and all the world, and we're going to start it tonight!" On March 12, 1912, she gathered 18 girls to regester the first troop of American Girl Guides. Her neice, and namesake, Margaret "Daisy Doots" Gordon, was the first to regester. That next year, the name was changed to Girl Scouts.
Juliette brought her girls into the outdoors, and encouraged them to learn multiple things, from traditional home making, to arts, sciences, and business. The Girl Scouts welcomed girls with disabilites as well. Juliette herself suffered not only from her deafness, but also back problems, and cancer.
From those original 18 girls, Girl Scouts has grown to 3.7 million girls strong.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
So there I was, sluggishly going through boxes in 100 degree weather yesterday. Specifically, a MM box full of papers. (Exciting stuff, right?) When this guy popped out.
cute, isn't he? I love gargoyles, and I had never seen this one hanging out at MM's house before. Turns out, the poor guy had been living in his box for quite awhile, just waiting patiently for the right person to find him, and let him come out to play. So I did.
so, now he is hanging out on our fireplace. Guarding, of all things, the candle I brought back from THE Notre Dame, in Paris. I thought it only right.
Turns out, somewhere, in MM's other boxes, are 2 more of his kind, in pewter. Making unpacking, for me, now, a treasure hunt! I must liberate the poor gargoyles from their purgatory of MM's boxes! It will give me something to do until next Wednesday when MM comes home from his trip....
AND (and and and and)
Daryl Claus came to visit. She sent me 2 wonderfully rusty er, I mean, rustic, pictures of an old truck in Napa. A picture I had admired when she put it up on her blog. She didn't like the closer up view of her shot, so sent me a full body shot of the truck as well. I love them BOTH and so they got quickly framed, and put up right in the entryway, where all who come visit can stop, and admire them. MM loves them as well, and spent considerable time yesterday standing there admiring the rusty truck. They are a hit!
So, cross your fingers that I find MM's gargoyles, and free them soon. And thank you so much Daryl Claus!
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Monday, July 7, 2008
And I have a few observations...
You will all be glad to know that though I was not tagged for the UU, I still went ahead and asked MM to name 3 things. He named about 20 in less than a minute. However, one of them was having a "sarcastic mean streak a mile wide...."
chirp chirp chirp
but he is completely correct, I can have one of those, especially with people who are hypocritical. And he did say it was with hypocritical people. So it's all good.
Plus we were eating really excellent sushi at the time.
Another observation? If you are at a restaurant, where people are kind of snugly placed at tables, please, do not sit there, and drink a goodly amount of liquor, and air all your adult children's dirty laundry. These 2 couples sitting next to us were totally bagging on their kids. Therapy, divorce, everything. Totally threw them under the bus. Not cool. But, they also threw themselves under the bus, too, by discussing how pregnant the wife was when they were married (and they were married in the early 50's). Enjoyable dinner conversation, eh?
And lastly, what is up with these specialty mail boxes? Tractors, Large mouth fish, pigs, dogs painted on them. Just to name a few. Why must we subject others to these things? I mean, I could go out, and paint my mailbox with a large phallus and hang some large metal balls off it, do you think the people on my street would like to see that? (Not sure how MM would feel about it either. I guess he could paint a vagina on the other side, or boobs...).
Obviously my brain is still kind of mush...
Oh, and before I forget! Sign ups now starting for the drunken Portland Postcards from Cami and I. Last year's were very interesting... don't miss out
Saturday, July 5, 2008
Ruprecht frantically ran through the streets of downtown Cardiff. His heart beating wildly in his ears, his sandals slapping against the rain soaked pavement. His love beads flapping against his face.
It was dawn. And it was Monday. And that meant....
finding the perfect greenery for HER lunch time salad.
She always ordered salad, and that puzzled him. "Surely, she realizes she looks spectacular" he thought to himself. He had tried, in the beginning, to tempt her with other fare. Pasta, (almost fresh.) A nice sandwich. Perhaps, his specialty, pizza, made with lobster, zuchini, and (almost) fresh cream sauce.
Once, he'd even made her a special salad, full of that garbage, Frizee, just to see if he could starve her into chosing something else. But she'd politely pushed it to the side, and ate the rest of the lettuce he'd not had the heart to leave out.
Getting to the market, he shoved aside the little old ladies and their shopping lorries, eager to see what produce was offered for the day. He examinined the raddichhio, the hearts of palm, the romaine. All appeared (almost) fresh, so he loaded them into his basket. Turning his nose up at the iceberg, he pressed on. He found some Bibb lettuce, and (joy of joys!) some Batavian lettuce as well. Going for broke, he also grabbed some butterhead. He did not want her to grow bored with the salad. She might find a new place for lunch if she did that...
After paying for his purchases, Rupe sailed back to his tiny restaurant on happy feet. He'd come to Cardiff to meet his soul mate. He had certainly never imagined he would find her, eating salad, in the restaurant he worked at. He certainly NEVER expected her to be an American, of all things.
"Bad luck she is married, though" he thought morosely. He'd seen her come in with her children a few times. The girl was well mannered and polite with her requests for crips and grilled cheese. The little one though. Had thrown lettuce at him.
Still and all, even knowing she was married, he could not tear his thoughts from her. Each day at lunch he waited for her to come in, and order her salad, in that exotic accent she had. It was what he lived for.
His friends tried to take him out, to distract him from always thinking of her. He always refused to go. Instead, he stayed home, agonizing over what she might want in her salads.
"Nice chopped egg, maybe? Broccoli? Artichoke Hearts? Mango even? He dreamt of lettuce, cucumbers, and the saucy American...
Back at the restaurant, he threw his heart and soul into the salad preparation, just knowing, in his bones, that she would gift him with her presence this day. But when his back was turned, just for a moment, (almost fresh) Kev went and mucked it all up, by tossing in some day old Frisee.
Rupe lost it, at that point. Tears streaming down his face, he rounded on (almost fresh) Kev, cheese grater in one hand, avocado in the other. (She would get her guacamole). (Almost fresh) Kev never stood a chance. They had to bury him in a closed casket. The mortician never did get all the avocado out of (not so fresh) Kev's nasal passages.
Ended up in the nuthouse. Working in the kitchens. But never allowed near salad, again. Because even the sight of Frisee was enough to send back around the bend.
And his American?
No one knows for sure. Rumor has it, she is still eating salad....
Friday, July 4, 2008
This day is the fourth of July. To those of you across the pond, (with the exception of Holly) this may not mean much. But it is a day we celebrate our independence. Our growing up, and cutting the apron strings from the "mother country. Stopped making tea properly. Forgot what scones were and started calling biscuits cookies.
any old how.
Here she is. My girl friday. The Statue of Liberty. I thought she would be a good one to look at, today. Our independence day.
France, back when they liked us, wanted to give us a gift to mark the Centennial of the Declaration of Independence. They commissioned a sculptor, Frederic Bartholdi, to make the gift. He built the first model, on a small scale, in 1970. )this one now stands in the Jardin du Luxembourg, in Paris.)
Bartholdi went on a visit, to Egypt, and got inspired by the Suez canal. While there, he got a grand idea to build a light house for the entrance of said canal. Unfortunately, his plan never came to commission, because the Egyptian government could not afford his work. So he transferred his grand plan to this particular statue.
It was agreed she would be a joint effort, with the Americans responsible for the base, and the French people responsible for the statue, and it's assembly. The french had to raise $250,000 (much money for that era) to uphold their end of this deal.
Bartholdi required the assistance of an engineer to address the structural issues related to building such a massive, copper sculpture. Gustave Eiffel was commissioned to design the rather large iron pylons and the secondary skeletal frame work needed. However, he had a 'side kick', a structuran enineer name Maurice Koechin, whom he delegated the dtail work to.
The original plan was to finish and present the statue to the US on July 4, 1876, but a late start, and delays prevented this. By that time only the right arm and torch were completed. THese were displayed at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, where visitors were charged 50 cents to climb the ladder to the balcony. The money from this was used to start funding the pedestal.
By June 30, 1878, at the Paris Exposition, the completed head of the statue was displayed in the garden of the Trocadero palace, and other pieces were on display in the Champs de Mars.
In the US, a site was selected to display the statue, in the New York Harbor. The island, at that time was known as Bedloe's Island.
In February of 1879, Bartholdi was was granted a US patent on "a statue representing Liberty enlightening the world, the same consisting, essentially, of the draped female figure, with one arm upraised, bearing a torch and while the other holds and inscribed tablet, and having upon the head a diadem, substantially set forth". The patient was VERY specific as to how she should look. The financing for the statue was finally completed in 1882.
THe fund raising for the pedestal was taking longer, however, until Joseph Pulitzer (of the Pulitzer Prize) took matters in hand. With his help, and the help of Senator Evarts and the American Committee, the rest of the funds for the pedestal were gathered.
THe construction of the statue was completed in France, in July of 1884. THe cornerstones of the pedestal were laid in August of 1884. She arrived in New York harbor on June 17, 1885, on board the french frigate, Isere. She was reduced to 350 pieces packed in to 214 crates. It was stored for eleven months, waiting for its pedestal to be completed. It took four months to assemble. On Ocober 28, 1886, the Statue of Liberty was unveiled by President Grover Cleveland. She functioned as a lighthouse from 1886 to 1902.
THere are 354 steps inside the statue, and it's pedestal. There are 25 windows in the crown, and the tablet in her hands reads, in Roman Numerals, July 4, 1776".
A new torch has replaced the original, which was deemed beyond repair due to exptensive modifications in 1916. The original torch is now in the monument's lobby museum.
The interior of the pedestal contains a bronze plaque that bears the poem "The New Colossus", by Emma Lazarus.
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
Thursday, July 3, 2008
See this? I got it from the lovely and talented Daryl.
And I am supposed to pass it on.
And I want to.
But I am dead tired.
All of you, in my blogroll
you are there for a reason. It is because I enjoy reading each and every one of you.
So consider yourselves gifted with this lovely award.
I am going to bed now
Posted by mielikki at 7:44 AM
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
The advent of email, and computers and all of our modern technology is staggering, isn't it?
Most of us remember typewriters, word processors, ect. I wrote all my school papers on those, or by hand. It wasn't until late in nursing school that we had a computer at home for me to use. And it was with one of those slow, grinding printers....
Anyhow. The point?
Real, handwritten honest to goodness letters.
I can't remember the last time I got one. Or wrote one.
A few years, at least. I have this friend, from Nursing School who stubbornly refused to get a computer. She sent me letters. She has since folded her non computer stance and is now a Myspace Queen.
What about kids?
Do they know how to put pen to paper?
And consider this. MM was just telling me his Mom saved all the letters his Dad wrote to her. (aww). His Dad was Navy and used to go on cruises. With the advent of email today, and yes, they have it on the ships. How romantic is it to have print outs of emails? I think it is much better to have the hand written kind, much read, I am sure. That physical reminder, a piece of paper that he held, and wrote on, and sealed, that she then held, and opened, and read. Sure, it takes a few days/weeks. But the memory is priceless.