Wednesday, September 26, 2007


I don't really trust ads done by famous actors. I know I should use L'Oreal because Sarah thinks I'm worth it, and women should take Boniva because Sally does. But really. Sally Fields is Oscar-winning for a reason. She's convincing in whatever role she's paid to play. And I doubt Sarah Jessica Parker has ever invited a girlfriend over for help and stuck her head in the tub with a home coloring kit. So I totally don't buy it.

The ghetto-fabulous cat tree got retired a while back (not too long after it was created, actually). Jon wasn't a big fan of having...well, the house. Anyway, I was cleaning out the garage the other day, and brought it back into commission. Friday, was ecstatic over his "new" toy, and I've been quite smug over my success of reinstating it into the home decor.

Confession: I wrote my Compassion Kid for the first time--maybe second--the other day. I know, it's sad. I've been sponsoring her since I was a freshman in college (our dorm hall sponsored her and a little boy, and I took her sponsorship over the next year). I save all her photos and letters, and her last one asked me if I was still in college, and why I didn't write. So, prompted by guilt from a 15-year-old in Ethiopia, I wrote. I included a recent pic of Jon and I, and one of my doodles. Her birthday's coming up (Dec 13, same as my dad's) so maybe I'll send something else for that. It was cool to send a letter. I have grand ideas that she'll squeal with delight of getting a letter from her wonderful sponsor, and she'll run in the streets waving the letter around, proud to show it to anyone who will look. Then I realize, and I've written her twice in 7 years. Yeah, I'm a real hero. So, maybe she'll just read it and tuck it into a box somewhere, but the more I write her, someday she'll be proud to tell someone about the sponsor who loves her enough to be consistent in her letter-writing--and she'll have a whole box full of letters to share. Still, I can't believe I've wasted 7 years of getting to know her, and I only have three years left before she becomes an adult and no longer needs sponsorship.

For some reason, it doesn't feel like we're nearing the end of the year. But alas, it's fall. My faithful flowers have run their course, though they still manage to eke out enough blooms to make me happy. I've planted irises so they'll be ready to bloom next spring. And, now that fall is here, I've found that I'm not quite ready for summer to leave. This summer was so great, and the weather perfect.

But, I've got a lot to look forward to this fall and winter! Garage sale, camping, biking, the State Fair of Texas, Silver Dollar City, Christmas!! So, I'm glad it's time to move on.

At the end of October, Jon and I are going to try our first biking adventure beyond the normal exercise route. There's a "rails to trails" route from Weatherford to Mineral Wells State park, about 20 miles one way. We'll ride in, eat lunch, then ride back out. It will be leisurely and hopefully the perfect fall weather. Our normal route is 10 miles at an "exercise" pace, so I think 40 spread out over the whole day will be just fine. I'm so excited, and I hope I've earned the money I need for my camera by that time! (And yes, that picture is of me: muscle-y arms, cropped top, long flowing hair and all...okay, maybe it's more representative....)

I've finally decided on sale prices for my photo equipment. It was a struggle to balance the original value with what people will actually pay. We'll see if I'm in the ballpark when the garage sale comes! I really hope I sell it. Partly because it took me awhile to realize I needed to let it go, and for it just to hang around makes it harder for this pack rat to keep trying to get rid of it. And partly because I want the money. :)

Thursday at work I'll be attending an all-day diversity training session. It seems to be a fad in companies lately, and we've had one session already. The first session was to recognize that our mostly female, white, middle-aged group of employees is actually diverse. Now that we've established that, we've all taken personality tests to be explained at the second meeting. I'm pretty sure I know what my personality is, though it's different at work than at home. We'll see how it comes out! And that photo on the left's just as representative of our company as the photo of the biker was of me.

It's quiet here today. The cat's asleep (big surprise), Jon's in class, the a/c is off, and it's just me, working on a work newsletter. I'm trying to spice it up with clipart. I know, I've been working on it for two years and this is the first time I think of it. That's why they pay me the big bucks! Anyway, we have a subscription to, which is not great for ads or anything serious, because the images aren't high-enough quality for press printing. However, they're fine for desktop printing, and I've found "Photo Object" to be my favorite search option. This pulls up only photos with clean white backgrounds behind the objects, which helps when I use them for the newsletter or whatever else. For example, a normal search for "peppers" brings up this image:
But, I just want a few of the peppers, so I have to Photoshop out the background, which turns out to be impossible because none of the peppers are shown in their entirety. Without some major time spent Photoshopping in what's missing, this won't work. So I use the "Photo Object" option, and find this photo:
Perfect! I can stick that into my story, and it looks great.

For anyone who has trouble reading the small text on a blog, you can change the text size that you view pages. On an Apple, do this by pressing the apple button and the plus sign at the same time. Decrease it back down by pressing Apple minus, or go back to original with Apple zero. If you're on a PC, press "ctrl +" to increase the size, "ctrl -" to decrease, and "ctrl 0" to go back to original. Thought I'd throw that out that for those grandparents and soon-to-be grandparents reading the blog. :)

Speaking of, I'm going to have a nephew! Yeah, I'm pretty excited. It must be scary and a little intimidating to face parenthood. But aunthood...piece of cake! I've got it made in the shade! I've already learned how to change diapers, give medicine, put to sleep, and give zerbers when distraction is necessary. Oh, and throw rules out the window when his parents aren't around. I'm a pro at being an aunt. :) Now if only I had a camera to take great pictures of the little guy.... Can you tell I'm excited about my camera...and the kid of course!

Well, I think I've rambled enough for one day...this should tide you over while I'm gone getting diversified tomorrow.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Why I need Lasik

Today was like any other day.

I turned on the shower water, waited for it to heat up, laid my glasses on the bathroom counter, and stepped into the bathtub.

Standing under the water, I noticed a dark fuzz on the floor of the tub (everything is fuzz without my glasses). Hm, must be towel fuzz. And I flicked some water on it. It dutifully headed to the drain.


to my horror,

it stopped.

And headed back up the incline. My towel fuzz was scaling the wall of the tub!!

Fearing the unknown (an ant? a spider? a tick? a baby roach?!!) I scrambled out of the tub--no easy task with wet feet on a wet tub. I fumbled with my glasses, cramming them onto my face as quickly as I could.

There was the perpetrator. My "towel fuzz" was a black spider.

Whispering a quick thanks that it wasn't a baby roach, I reached for a cup, filled it up, and sent the spider down into the plumbing.

I spent the rest of my shower humming, "Itsy bitsy spider...."

Monday, September 17, 2007

Switching Allegience and other news

Thursday I got my car washed at Genie Car Wash. I had a coupon. It was pretty cool to watch it go through the long washer, and then have someone dry it and Windex all the windows. However, when it came out of the washer, it was lacking the one token that set it apart from all other little white cars in a parking lot--the Dr Pepper antenna ball that Karen gave me. I asked about it, and a couple of people headed into the tunnel of water and fabric streamers. After a few minutes, one emerged with an antenna ball! I smiled, glad that Princess Buttercup could once again show her drink of choice. But my smile fell when I realized the ball was a smiley face with a Cowboys football helmet on it. Hm...well, it still serves a purpose, so I stuck it on my antenna. I figure I'll fit in around here anyway.

As a side note, I found out that you're supposed to tip the person who Windexes the windows. Thankfully, I noticed a couple of people do it before my car was ready, so I had a chance to get some cash.

In other news, I trimmed my hedge today! It was a major overhaul. The last major overhaul rescued the sidewalk, which was about halfway covered by the monster bush. This time I tackled the height. The bush reached up and beyond the eaves of the house, and it dominated the exterior look. No more. With my trusty electric hedge trimmer and Holly to saw off the bigger branches, the bush is now about 4.5 feet tall. It's a huge difference. We have another bush to be trimmed, but the back of the truck was too full of trimmings to add more from the second bush. Another weekend, perhaps.

Speaking of other weekends, we're having a garage sale coming up pretty soon. Holly and I are putting together a "multi-family" affair. It really has turned out that way as other people have donated to the cause. My mom's stuff came pre-priced, so that was pretty nice. I still feel like I'm not selling enough, because my house is still full of stuff, but then I realize I use all that stuff; I just don't have proper places to put them, so they clutter the house up.

Anyway, I'm hoping I'll make a little money to go towards my camera fund. My point and shoot is on the blink, though I did get it to work today. However, it's not reliable. I was thinking the new digital SLR would serve the purpose of the point and shoot (after all, if I can take better pictures with a better camera, why not do it?). However, there are advantages to having a camera that can fit in my purse. Still, on my trips to and from the office, there are times I wish I had a nice camera and tripod with me, to take some shots. Then again, I'd always be late for work that way.... And if I'm spending that much money on an SLR, why tote a little guy around that doesn't take as good of pictures? It's a conundrum indeed. If we just got the SLR, the money we would spend on a point and shoot would go toward the SLR. If we got both, I'd have a lot further to go toward the camera I want. What are your thoughts?

Friday, September 14, 2007


Check out! It has stock photography and fonts, but what I thought was great was the merchandise! Pretty much everything under T-shirts, Apparel, and Accessories made me laugh. If my dad read blogs, he'd really appreciate the merchandise, too. He's the one who got me started, teaching me the differences between serif and sans-serif, em dashes and en dashes, and leading and kerning. So, few others may get it, but Daddy, this is for you!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Just call me YiYi.

Yesterday Sophie came to visit. Well, Holly and Grandma were with her, too, but it was Sophie I heard coming up the sidewalk. She was walking behind her pushtoy, something that looked a little like this:

As she rumbled up the sidewalk, I opened the door. Holly said, "She was so excited when she realized we were coming over here. And you have a new name. Yi Yi!" (Pronounced yee-yee, but that takes longer to write.)

Yi Yi! I've always wondered what kids would call me. Lydia is a hard name to say for kids. "L" is impossible, and three syllables can be a lot to ask. I thought maybe Wydia, but then it would degrade down to WeeWee when kids are just learning to talk. Yi Yi was an improvement I had not imagined. I was sorry that I missed hearing Sophie say it!

As the family was leaving, Sophie, leaning on her toy, looked at me with bright eyes and yelled out, "BYE!!" It was the first time I'd heard her say something with such intent; usually "bye" was just a mumbled response to our prodding, or an echo of our attempts to teach her. This was a sure, "Goodbye, we'll play tomorrow!" adios. That girl knew what she was saying, and her voice was so clear and cute! I responded with an elated, "Bye Sophie!" to which she again said, "Bye!!" This went on for a few times until Holly broke it up, coaxing Sophie to barrel back down the sidewalk on the handlebar of her push toy.

I bought her some markers and construction paper. She's coming over this afternoon, and I can't wait to play! Sophie's always been a fun baby, and now that she's one year old, it's even more fun to watch the daily developments: understanding the relationship of keys to doors and shoes to feet, seeing her brush a teddy bear's fur and finding pens and paper from all over the house so she can draw (hence the new markers and paper).

And I'm Yi Yi. Not too far off I'll be Aunt Yi Yi to another bundle of joy (though I'll have to wait a long time for him/her to say it). I think that's just about made my week.