Thursday, February 25, 2010

Accidental Chili

The other day I accidentally made good chili.


How does one "accidentally" make good chili you ask?
Good question. I was actually kinda pissed at myself in the process and scrambled to fix it.

I will readily admit, that I don't make great chili. I make chili that fits my personal needs:

  1. Not hot
  2. Thick
  3. Meaty
  4. Easy

That normally consists of, a pound of lean hamburger, a large can of tomato sauce, and a can of diced stewed tomatoes.

That's it.

Yeah, I know, it's boring.

So the other day, I thought I'd get smarty and sautee some onions first, because despite what everyone else thinks, I'd burn sauteed onion scented candles if they had them. It ranks up high, right behind bacon and hot apple pie.

Then I put in the meat, and go to grab my other ingredients. Ooops.

Not only am I out of tomato sauce, I bought medium beans instead of mild. So what I did, was take a second can of stewed tomatoes and pureed them! It worked! It added a lot of flavor and was so much better, with just a tiny kick, and not too spicy.

We named it appropriately, accidental chili. (we're not all that creative in the naming department. Someday I'll tell you how to make chicken clomp, and how it got named that.)

So I will admit defeat.
But I still won't be entering any chili cook-offs anytime soon!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

More Holga love

I decided to get out the holga 135 bc again the other day to play. Actually, it took over a week to find enough things I felt worthy of photographing, and honestly, I need something besides snow drifts to hold my interest at this point!!

It's kinda like shooting with your eyes shut. Or something like that. You can't really see for sure what you are shooting, because you're not looking through the lens (hence the term single lens reflex - SLR).

Plus on top of that, I kept taking all kinds of purse pictures. You know, those photos that your camera takes for you as it bumps around in the bottom of your purse!!

I took my film into Walmart, left it for them to make me a CD ($4.00). When I go to pick it up, Sally (the lady that I see EVERY TIME) says "Oh you're not gonna want these."

I look at the index print.

Yeah there's some real duds in there.

But I could see a few good ones... Well let me rephrase that. I could see a few "good useable" ones. They are not good by most camera standards today, but that makes it artsy!

So I bought them anyway.
But it was nice of her to offer.
Thanks Sally!


I shot these through my front and bedroom windows. It was snowing, and there was lots of drips on my windows that I shot through.


This is one of my favorites. No editing at all, no saturation. LOVE the blues. I'm wondering if it was because it was film, or the camera..... or maybe just the time of the day.


Love the hairs on the negative. LOL. Thanks Walmart for getting all artsy on me.


Sadly, this was over a week ago, and my road looks like this AGAIN.


Left: I LOVE how the drift draws your eye right up to the farm.
Right: Well hello stranger.


I don't even remember taking this one! The detail of the snow is very cool. I love it!

Anyone cave and get a holga yet? Please share your links if you have!

Monday, February 22, 2010

God Bless good teachers

Please note: I was cleaning out my inbox the other day when I couldn't sleep. Yes, I took a nap on my brand new mattress, and paid the price until 2:30 a.m. I ran across a little story I wrote for a contest by Debbie Mumm back in 2004 about women that inspired us creatively.

I choose to write about my 4th grade teacher, Miss Wilson.


The first woman that I ever loved who was not my own mother or grandmother, was Miss Wilson.

I came from a long line of creative women. My mother was a painter, my father's mother had her own ceramics shop and quilted, and my home is still filled with quilts that my mother's mother spent many hours creating. Not to mention the many aunts, cousins and sisters that have creative ventures of their own. I often laugh when I say, that I truly was in high school before I figured out that not all moms made their kids' clothes and fancy crocheted rugs for the bathroom.

None of those women were Miss Wilson.

Miss Wilson was my fourth grade teacher, and one of the few people in my lifetime that saw something in me, that I could not see for myself. At age 10, I was shy, quiet, not so popular and enough overweight to cause myself to be the butt of many jokes with the other kids. I was also very creative and an avid artist. If I was not reading, I was drawing, sewing or "creating" something out of my mind.


I can remember the way Miss Wilson treated me like it was yesterday. I have to say, that I don't remember a lot of things "like it was yesterday" anymore. Miss Wilson often pulled me away from the other children, because she saw something creative in me and wanted to help me shine. I admit, I was the teacher's pet - the only time in my life that happened for me. When there was a class project to be made, she challenged me and creating a more difficult project for different from the others and just for me. To this day, I love a challenge... don't tell me I can't, because I'll try harder. Miss Wilson gave that gift to me.

I remember the special origami birds that we made for Christmas. They were red, and mine were made from bright red, wide, paper ribbon. They were so special that my mother placed them high on the tree every year, and they still grace my tree today.


This was the beginning for me. This was the beginning of being an "artist".

Those little origami birds started it for me. I already loved my pads of paper, my pencils and the fancy pastels my mother bought me for Christmas, but the birds were something special. I had taken some simple strips of ribbon paper and created a 3d "scultpture". Paper took on a new meaning for me. It was no longer for just coloring, it could be anything. It wasn't a coloring book, it was a "medium" for expression. My lifelong obsession with paper, was beginning.

A friend and I used to always laugh about how much we loved the first day of school because of the new notebooks that we got for the first day. It was humorous enough to us, that we'd buy each other spiral notebooks as gifts.

Miss Wilson made me feel like I was indeed an creative being, and that I could create special things that other children could not. And I could! In return, the other children saw that in me too, and I became "the artist". I remember in junior high, wanting to make some pocket money for myself and to young to work at the ice cream shop or a restaurant. Instead, I started creating custom art pieces for my classmates selling them for $2.00 each.

Maybe, I might still be creative today without the influence of Miss Wilson... or maybe not. I do believe the path would have been much more difficult for me to discover had she not given me the confidence to try.

I still love Miss Wilson.


Funny note about this: When I wrote it in 2004, I had not seen Miss Wilson in around 20 years. Days after I wrote it, I ran into her at Wal-mart! Odd as that was at the moment, about 2 months ago, once again, I was thinking of Miss Wilson, and this very story about her. Lo and behold, about a week later, I ran into her at Wal-mart again!!

Maybe I just shop at Walmart too much!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

For my 1.23 reader(s) that worried about me...

I'm alive. I made it home last night safe and sound.

And slept in the guest bed. Which for the record, is pretty decent, but it's a full, so I was forced to snuggle all night, and well, I've been married long enough now that snuggling lasts a little wile then go to your side of the bed I wanna sleep dammit.

In other news, we finally got the bed home today, a full 24 hours after he went to get it, and almost a week after we bought the first one. We unwrapped it, put a sheet on, jumped in and woke up 2 hours later in the exact same position we laid down in. Oh yeah.. it's Niiiiice. lol.

Gene wants you to know, that he highly recommends the Sealy puppy dog eyelash mattress.

Friday, February 19, 2010

I hate catch up posts

But feel like I'm doing them more and more lately. But then, I can move on :)

1. Sooo.. I kinda got hung up on Valentine's Day. In particular, what to give my husband. I mean, I'm at the point where I'm tired of so many "things" and enjoy a nice practical gift too. However, having said that, a really "good fight" Gene and I had was about Valentine's dinner a few years ago so I always tread lightly in this department.

A couple days before V-day, I stopped at the gas station and saw some scratch off tickets, which he loves. So I decided that'd be a great v-day surprise. Thennnn.. on the way home, I thought well, I'll get some chocolate too. Then I thought it would be fun to add some Crown Royal and heck since I'm in the liquor department, some really over priced cigars too!


I told him it's the epitome of man gifts. Only thing it was missing was porn.


It was a HUGE HIT. He didn't seem too upset it was missing porn either. LOL.

He did a good on the practical dept too. He bought me scrapbook goodies, and let me go to Archivers a few days later.... took a nap in the car and didn't complain. That's ALWAYS A GIFT.

2. I'm a Duggar.

I am. I really am. You can't help but love them and their practical ways. Cept all those babies, I'm really not feeling that part, I could barely handle 2!

Having said that, I decided to make myself some homemade Duggar laundry detergent. It costs a *fraction* of regular detergent costs. It averages like 1 cent a load!!

From the Duggar Website:

Powdered Laundry Detergent - Top load machine
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar
1 Cup - Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
*½ Cup Borax

-Grate soap or break into pieces and process in a food processor until powdered. Mix all ingredients. For light load, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled load, use 2 Tablespoons. Yields: 3 Cups detergent. (Approx. 40 loads)

*Arm & Hammer "Super Washing Soda" - in some stores or may be purchased online here. Baking Soda will not work, nor will Arm & Hammer Detergent - It must be sodium carbonate!!

TIPS FOR LAUNDRY SOAP: We use Fels-Naptha bar soap in the homemade soap recipes, but you can use Ivory, Sunlight, Kirk's Hardwater Castile or Zote bars. Don't use heavily perfumed soaps. We buy Fels-Naptha by the case from our local grocer or online. Washing Soda and Borax can often be found on the laundry or cleaning aisle. Recipe cost approx. $2 per batch.

I purchased the washing soda at . They are competitively priced and shipping is FREE! I actually bought laundry detergent and deodorant online.

That's weird.

I feel like a jetson.
And a pioneer woman.

What a perfect juxtaposition of the past and the future. Ahh.. wax poetic.


3. Over the weekend we had an ADVENTURE. It was more like a pain in the butt and less like an "adventure" I'd say, but I'll try to make this the readers digest version.

First we decided to go to an antique store in Platte City where I found a beautiful antique vase - a steal at $10. Also some vintage tumblers with old cars on them. No idea why I loved them so much, but I do. Gene thought I was selling them, and wow was he wrong.

After that Gene wanted to go to Nebraska Furniture mart to look at televisions. We have been saving our pennies and watching sales for 3 months. He was tired of watching sales. I was tired of Nebraska Furniture Mart. However, there's a point where you have to stop shopping and just do it!

So we pulled the trigger on that, and it will be delivered on the 25th.

THEN... we ate dinner, and he suggested we look at mattresses. Huge mistake but since he's sleeping 1/2 his nights in the guest room because our *almost brand new* mattress is killing his back, I played along.

We found an awesome mattress, let ourselves get upsold by a craft sales person and bought it.

On the way home, we decided to just amuse ourselves and stop by the place we bought the original one. They said "BRING IT IN WE'LL EXCHANGE IT!!" Go Menards. They gained a bunch of points with us. We found one we liked even better and then headed off for home on a search for the receipt.

Did I ever mention that when I'm nervous, I have to go to the bathroom a lot? I do.
So the whole process made me nervous that we were going to end up with TWO perfectly lovely pillow tops and one bed to put them on. Like princess and the pea.

I went potty 4 times Sunday morning before 9 a.m.

We got the original mattress cancelled.


So then the next day, we decide that we're going to take the beverage fridge that we ALSO bought at Menards back because first off, it sounds like a golf ball hitting the house every time the compressor kicks off and second, because I saw one I liked way better at Nebraska Furniture Mart. (did I mention I hate that place?)

So we load up the jeep, are on the way to return it when we get the call about mom's accident. Go ahead and return it, head to NFM, buy the new one.. OOPS! Out of stock!! *shoot me*

So now i have an empty hole in my island with a bunch of wine bottles sitting in it. LOL. We look like lushes. But the good news is, I got it put on the truck so I don't have to come back for it.

Anyway, so today Gene goes to return the mattress.

I know, it's snowing like there's no tomorrow (and I might start to believe that!) when Gene takes off with our new mattress. He's hell bent on getting it TODAY. It snowed about 5-6 inches in about 4 hours.

He went anyway. He did miss the 3 semi pile up on Hwy 29 and an hour later calls me to tell me the "eagle has landed".

No lie. he really said that.

Then 10 minutes later he calls to tell me the chicken is in the house. He wasn't in an accident, just sitting along side the hwy because his van broke down!! His boss let him pick it up in the work van, and as I type this, he's sitting along the interstate waiting for someone to bring him some transmission fluid.

I told him to sell it to his boss like it was a good thing it didn't happen during the work day *whew* (sarcasm).

I don't know if I'm sleeping on the guest bed tonight or not. This might be FUN! It's like camping, only with pillowtops.

4. It snowed again.
Snow sucks.

It's pretty still, but it sucks.

Nuff said.

5. UPDATE: I just got a call. I'm driving my lil' 4wd to go pick up this damn mattress.. and a trailer. This will suck. Tell my family I love them!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Oh Spring... where art thou?

Yesterday I had to run a lot of errands, and spent a great deal of time in and out of the weather, which for the record, is officially "icky". It's an actual weather term, really, look it up. So in a fit of hopeful optimism, I checked the one month "forecast" online yesterday and was greeted with this:


It quickly shot that optimism all to hell pretty fast. I mean really, can we not have ONE day over 50? One. It's all I ask. I just want one of those days where I say "Oh yeah, I own some flip flops, where ARE THEY?" and look at them longingly, wear them around the house. Flirt with some t-shirts, wonder if I'm going to fit into my capris this year or not. (sure would be nice if they'd be too loose instead of too tight this year!)

But alas, that has not happened. I'm smacked in the face with the same forecast over and over. Cold. Snow. Gray. Welcome to Missouri you whining wench.

So instead of looking at the forecast, I mustered up every last little bit of hope that I had in my stomach - you know, right down there next to 23 feet of bowels - and I went into my external drive where I store all those pictures my family wishes I would delete.

Exactly one year ago, I recorded this:


This is not helping!!

So after I rolled around on the floor, kicking my feet and screaming for my mommy (which never worked back then either), I decided that I would look woefully into the future, and see what March held for us last year.

Exactly one month from now, I'm hoping my world will look something like this:


Although maybe not quite so crispy.

I can live with the concept that's in this photo. Dry grass, sweatshirt only, a flirt of a blue sky, a hint of some green grass popping in. Yes, I can live with that.

If I can keep myself from slitting my wrists in the next 30 days anyway.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Coming to you from high over NWMO - this is your eye in the sky!

This is Lana, your eye in the sky over Northwest Missouri. I'm bringing you this blustery winter traffic report!

Report #1:


I was in my bedroom, when I heard the strangest sound, like someone driving through my yard hauling a wagon. Imagine my surprise when I saw someone almost driving through my yard hauling a wagon. I'm guessing some sort of pesticide or something equally important yet uninteresting.

However, weird.
and photo worthy.

Report #2:


I find it funny that you can have one of the smallest cars in the world, but have an a-hole ego big enough that you STILL have to take up 2 parking spots.

It pretty much took all I had not to key his "car".

Jack hole.

Report #3:
{warning - blurry crappy photos ahead}


Now that we have an automatic instead of just a manual transmission (and a cool car to boot) Tanner is hot to drive whenever possible. Sometimes I cave and say yes.



In return he gets his photo taken, and plastered on the interwebs.

Hi Tanner!
Hi Interwebs!


Now keep your eye on the road and don't crash!

Speaking of crashing.

And there's some irony here as I already had this post worked out in my head with #1, 2, 3 before #4 came along minutes later.

This afternoon, Gene and I were on our way to St. Joseph and Kansas City for the second time in 2 days (I'll explain about that later), I got to thinking about missing a phone call from Mom the day before. I didn't have my phone so I was basically on a mission to remember mom's phone # by heart, which for the record, completely escaped me.

There are people all over southwest Iowa right now, with missed calls and saying "who da hell was dat?"

Anyway, I finally got through, left her a msg to call me, and a few minutes later she calls back. Crying.

She'd *just* had an accident, rolled her pick up (which was my dads) and totalled it. She was strapped into her seatbelt, so she was hanging in the air when she finally got it unhooked, then fell across the cab onto her side.

She's ok, her hip hurts, but we're going to the Dr. tomorrow to see how it is. She's spending the night at my house "just in case". She was upset she wrecked "dad's truck". Dad doesn't need it anymore, and I'm sure he'd rather she be alive, than the truck be ok.

That's why God made insurance!!

And I want the record to reflect, that I have started wearing my stupid stupid seatbelt. Grr. LOL.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Bridal fairs = super fun (that's sarcasm)

I decided today, that you really must see how terribly exciting bridal fairs are. Yes, *excitement*!

OK, I kid, they are kinda fun, but the whole prep up to the show is incredibly stressful, especially when you decide to change your whole booth.


Last month we did a fair sized show, where close to 150 brides (and a couple grooms) came. The place was absolutely PACKED with people. I talked the entire time, and by the time I got home, my throat was killing me. I know this will surprise you, but I really don't talk *that much*.

I used to answer phones for a living, that that really broke that little habit of wanting to talk on the phone, or even talk much *at all*. But man, once I get started.....


We had one minor glitch with our back wall, but we rigged it and got it to work. ON the way home, I slapped my forehead and said *duh!* and knew what we did wrong.


I know, he looks excited doesn't he?

We're going to have to do something more interesting with the table for future reference. All in good time! We did, however, have a slideshow made (thanks Tanner!) of one wedding that ran continuously. I have a TV that Gene bought me for Christmas and it was the perfect size. Sadly my dvd player(s) kept screwing up, so we had to take the big vcr/dvd player combo! It worked so all was good.

If you've never been to a bridal show, you will see that sometimes they have a fashion show too with items supplied by local businesses.


I loved his attitude, he had all the ladies loving him.. and he knew it!


This is Teresa with Spectacular Settings. I met Teresa years ago through a mutual friend and it was just a coincidence that we both get into the wedding industry. We also happened to be next door neighbors at the show.

It didn't matter, we were both so crazy busy we didn't have much time to talk. Teresa does decorating for weddings and special events. I'm in LOVE with that centerpiece!


This is Rob, the guy that puts it all together. He's also the owner of the famous "Village flowers by Rob". They also have tuxedo rentals at the shop, and I didn't know that! He had the show running like a well oiled machine.

Next to him is the wonderful Shannon - of Shannon Renee's formal wear right here in Maryville! She has all kinds of beautiful formal wear from wedding gowns, to prom dresses and bridesmaid dresses. Really, you should stop in just to see what she has it's a really nice shop!

It was a great show, and I'd definitely go again. I wish I'd had time to talk with more of the vendors, I was so busy that I thought I'd have time to go around and chat, but NOT SO!

Contact info:
Village flowers by Rob
3841 Frederick Ave.,
East Ridge Village
St. Joseph, MO 64506
PHONE (816) 232-3326

Spectacular Settings
Teresa Hayes
660-582-2037 or 660-582-0791

Shannon Renee's Formalwear
1911 S. Main St.
Maryville, Missouri 64468
660-562-0202 phone

Then a few days ago, my sister had her bridal fair in her salon in Iowa. It was a smaller affair, more of a meet and greet with vendors, some yummy treats made by Amber herself, and getting more time to mingle with some of the other cool people in my area.


Yes, I'm going to show you a pic of Amber.
Because it's my blog and I can.

and also because I really liked her hair!


Then I took some texture and fading to hide the fact that the photo was kinda blurry. lol. But it's still pretty.


This is how my husband, Gene felt about the whole thing:


Listen - I got him to wear a pink shirt to match my display at least. We all gotta start somewhere right?


I wanted to share something cool I found out while was there. There's a little flower shop in my hometown that's been there *forever*. In fact, Amber used to work there when she was in high school, and the owner, Sara, did all of Amber's wedding flowers because she's nice like that.

Well, Sara was there, and come to find out, the flower shop has a liquor license now, and sells a really nice selection of native Iowa wines! Apparently she's doing well with it, and it's really a unique idea.

After the show, she opened the shop for a bit for us, so that we could go in and get a couple bottles (if 3 is a couple). You MUST go there, and buy yourself a bottle of Red, White and Blue from Tassel Ridge wineries. VERY good and I'm not a red wine fan. It doesn't have that bite that red wine usually does.

BTW, on March 17 from 4-7 pm, the shop will be having a wine tasting. I'm going to try to drag my wino self up there.

Don't tell anyone, but I've drank almost a whole bottle myself so far.

I'm a lush.

Contact info:

Rockin' Rollers Salon
108 N. Main
Lenox, Iowa 50851

Bedford Flower Shop
412 Main Street
Bedford, IA 50833-1322
(712) 523-3449

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Scrapbook Page - Enjoy the Ride

My latest page. I've actually had this done for a few days, I just figured you were tired of scrapbook pages. ;)

I swear, I'll do a page without Tayen on it again soon. Promise.

This is riding the train at Silver Dollar City this fall.




Paper: Basic Grey
Diecut Paper: Making Memories
Chipboard letters: Unknown - given to me. I sprayed them with glimmer mist
Sticker letters - OLDDDDD SEI

I was going to go back and add some accents, but looking at it now, the paper is pretty busy, I don't think it needs it. Sweet.

Warning - A post all about me. shocking.

"There's a skinny person inside of me screaming to get out. I can usually shut her up with cookies. "

I have this reoccurring dream sometimes. Actually, it's not the exact same dream, it's just the exact same action.

Sometimes I dream I'm running. Nope, not from a bobcat or a crazed monkey (well, probably that too), but actually, I'm just *jogging*. Moseying along, at my own sweet dreamin' pace. I've talked about my dreams here before, I dream crazy stuff. *CrAzY* stuff. Stuff that would get me put in therapy. Or a straight jacket.

Or both.

But sometimes the dreams are different. Sometimes they are so real, that it might take days for me to realize that it wasn't true.... this is one of those cases.

I haven't had these dreams for a while, probably several years, but they started up again as of late. Usually in the dream, I'm walking someplace and on the spur of the moment, I decide I'm just going to jog so I can get their faster.

Now if you know me for one second, you know I'm not a jogger. A.) My knees can't take it. B.) It's not a pretty sight and C.) well, you read B right? However, in these dreams, it just feels *so good* to pick up and start running. Like that's the way it's supposed to be. I wonder if that's what running is like for other people, because if it is, I can finally understand why so many people do it.

It doesn't feel like running at all, although I know I am. I wouldn't describe it as slow motion, but I can feel every step I take, and I feel light, almost on the verge of floating to the next step.

And there's the rub. It feels so good to run, because I feel so light.

Now like I said this is not the first time this has happened to me in my life. In fact, it's been a long while. To the point where I had decided that those dreams were gone forever. It's been about 7 or 8 years since they seemed so real that it was a nightly thing, to run places.

Finally, I took a hint, and started eating right, then working out, and then this happened:


Yep. That's me, circa minus 8 years approx.

I wouldn't say that it was the happiest of my life (on a personal level), but I was indeed happy with what I had accomplished. In fact, I was proud. Proud that I'd come so far and could see the end. Finally.

Once I started losing weight, it became more than just losing weight. I started lifting weights, and remembered back to high school, when I used to lift weights and was *good at it*. It felt good to feel every single muscle in my body and how it moved. To be honest, I really LIKED having aching muscles the next day because I could feel every muscle work.

Don't get me started on driving a stick shift after a hard leg workout.

In High school, I had a talent for lifting weights. I would be in the weight room with the football guys (yes) and doing the hip sled - more weight than some of the linemen. I loved it, and went to the coach and asked if I could be on the iron men club. Now for the record, if you wanted to be an "Iron Man" you had to bench press 200 pounds. This was something I knew I wouldn't be able to do, so I asked if there was something *else* I could do to prove myself.

His response was "If you wanna be in the club, you gotta do what everyone else does." (with a very condescending smirk). He basically told me, "No Girls Allowed".

Later in life, I won the women's division in a bench press competition. I wanted to mail him the trophy with a note that told him to take his Iron Men, and this trophy and shove them both up his ass.

A couple years later - they started Iron women, but I refused to join on principle alone.

So anyway, lifting weight, and having a talent for it, started me thinking about something else, about more than just getting thin, but about being built. About someday having a dream of wanting to do a body building comp. Yep... one of those chicks.

I became pretty obsessed with it. I read all the muscle mags (the guy ones, not the chick ones - those are just advertising) and I even went to a body building competition in St. Louis, which for the record, is pretty darn cool! Seeing so many people accomplish their dream was inspiring.

The gym became a nearly daily thing, sometimes twice a day. I was driven and had a passion. But the body stopped there, and over a YEAR of nothing, I slowly burnt myself out. Along came changes in my life, which became an easy excuse to not go to the gym, cuz hey, I wasn't accomplishing anything anyway right?

So I gained. Period. Just did.

I don't beat myself up over it anymore.

That was the first step to just getting myself back on track. With that came - the dreams. Those dreams about being outside, and running.... floating. Makes me wonder if this is not a premonition of sorts. "It's your turn Lana."


And it does feel like that again.

Eating well - not perfect -but journaling everything. Every day. I haven't been exercising - the weather is crap. But I don't think that's a good excuse so I've been trying to think of things that I like to do, that I can do inside and just yesterday, I bought myself a dance video to try out.

I bought myself some Flaxseed oil (liquid, not pills) because I've had great luck with that in the past. (I'll teach you about flaxseed oil soon!)

Slowly it's coming off. I'm at 9 pounds down now, which is one pound from my second goal. (5# at a time). Which doesn't sound like a lot since I last reported, but apparently I suck at 3rd grade subtraction and was off by a pound. LOL! All my clothes are loose, and I can look at my face and tell I've lost. Gene looks at me and says he can tell too - which I hope he's being honest and not blowing smoke. heh.

So I'm getting there... slowly.

And that chick up there? Well, that's not the old me. That's the "other" me. We're friends, we talk sometimes. She invites me over and I'm usually too busy for her - which is very rude btw. So I've made time to hang with her again, because srsly, she's awesome.

I'll be there again - just give me some time.
Then I'll be kicking ass and taking names.

(more than usual)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Things that Bambi taught me

I learned 2 things over the weekend.

OK, maybe I didn't so much learn, as I was "reminded".

First, we went to Amber's bridal fair in Lenox, which for the record means a good solid 30 min drive in SW Iowa. No getting around it without a helicopter or a teleportation device, and since I don't know Donald Trump OR William Shatner, I'm S-O-L.

So what's so bad about driving in Iowa?

Well, usually nothing. Except for the fact they've let their roads go to crap even tho their gas tax is .10 a gallon higher than us. Come on Iowa, who lined their pockets with that tax? :p

The other thing makes it sucky to drive in sw Iowa is those moving hurdles called "deer". We see them once in a while here, not a long, occasionally. However, in Iowa, I mere 20 miles from here, they are like fleas on a stray dog. Which means that the first thing I learned in Iowa was: "There's a lot of deer. Drive slow."


The other thing I learned this weekend, is that invariably, no matter WHAT lens I take, I probably won't have the right one. You see, so that I'm not carrying a bunch of equipment around, and just wanting to carry one small bag, I try to determine either a.) what I'll be photographing, or b.) what lens I want to practice with.

The downside is, sometimes things happen around you, and you don't have the right lens for the moment, to which your husband will say "tsk tsk" and click his tongue until you wanna smack him.

I'm not a photo journalist dear.

However, if he's willing to let me drop some bank on some new lenses, I'm in.

Anyway, on the way to Amber's, we pop a hill and Gene sees about 8-9 deer on a hillside and about flips out. "oh my god! I've never seen so many deer at one time, that's a herd!"

I'm thinking, he's nuts. I've seen 16-17 at one time, and yes, it was in Iowa, just about a year or two ago.

So on the way back, he insists that I get out my camera, to which I don't have telephoto, just wide-mid range lens that's good for portraits, and close ups. Just outside of Bedford - literally within 1/4 mile, we see this:


Yes folks, that's 33 deer from my count.


Imagine how many freezers it would take. Think about it for a minute.

So we take a few crappy photos, say "oh my GAWD" a whole lot, and then head off towards home. On the OTHER side of town, where we got a little closer look at this gal:


She was rather oblivious to us, which reminds me of #3. Deer are stupid. Really really stupid. Oh, and they remind me of dogs. Which also are for the most part, stupid.

So let's recap:
#1. there are a lot of deer in Iowa
#2. No matter what I do, I don't have the right lense
Bonus #3. Deer are stupid

But cute.

(good save Lana)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Scrapbook page - Silver Dollar City

A simple page today, our picture as we ented Silver Dollar City.



Paper: The SDC paper I purchased in Branson. No maker is included.
Striped Paper: Creative Imaginations
Journaling block: OLD! Like, 6-7 years. I received it in a swap.
Border punch: Martha Stewart Crafts
Sticker: 7 gypsies
Metal rimmed tag

Friday, February 5, 2010

Do you think McArthy owned a brownie?

I told you last week, about my new little plastic Holga camera that I bought. Because. I wanted it. So there.

Well it came in the mail, in an interesting little package.


I laughed when I saw it the day Tanner and I picked it up at the post office. I have no mailbox remember? I have to go pick up my mail now. Sigh. Anyway, I laughed and told Tanner that it looks like it was mailed from 1954. But it wasnt. It was just mailed from China, which in ways, is kind of like 1954, complete with communists, but no McArthy hearings.

It was wrapped well, with some simple brown paper, tons of exotic stamps, and string. Who uses string anymore? I didn't know they'd even allow that, but they did. And then I smiled because I remember string on packages but that reminds me that I'm getting old.

And then I stop smiling.


What was inside that box, created images that were very much like the exterior of the box.

The "BC" in the 135bc stands for "black corners" which is what I wanted. I'm addicted to vignetting of images, and I can never quite master those deep blacks in the corners of my regular ol' photos with my antiquated program I use (yet LOVE). It also creates some "not spectacular" quality images, which in a way is kinda artsy fartsy and lets you look at things maybe just a little differently than before.

I just so happened to have some film in the fridge. "Process by 11-09".

Plus I know I've had it for at least a good 4 years. I mean, what's the worst that could happen right?

It worked GREAT. In fact, it was almost too good. I took it in to walmart to be processed and put only on a CD instead of prints. I then brought the cd home and converted some to black and white, on a few added some noise.


Me and that lil Holga, we decided to go on an adventure.

That adventure rarely meant leaving the jeep.
It's cold out.


I don't know if it was the processing, the camera, or the old film, but there's some cool scratching to the images too.




And my favorite image:


It felt a little "Ansel Adams" to me. I'm not sure I could have created this image with my canon. It's funny that it came from such a simple little camera. I can kind of see how addictive these things can be.

I have more expired film in the fridge, and heading to Iowa tomorrow. I'm going to see if I can find creative things to photograph that are not trees this time.

In the meantime, I'll go back to that "place" where I'm looking at magnetic albums on the floor of my mom's bedroom. Because they looked like this!
Who knew that craptacular photos were in again?!

Tomorrow... I'm going to try to cut off some heads with this thing.

Scrapbook Page - Got any cheese?

Still working on those Branson pics. Whenever we go to Branson we ALWAYS stop at Osceola Cheese. It's like blasphemy if you don't!

Mmmm... cheese.


Pics blurred of funny faces so I don't get in trouble!




Paper: Cosmo Cricket
Diecuts: Cricut - accent essentials I think
Stickers - puffy Ratatouille stickers from hallmark - one of my fav movies. lol
Metal frame - Making Memories from a lonnnnng time ago
Sticker letters: Thickers American Crafts and SEI
Chipboard Journal block: Recollections

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Flickr Faves

I've not brought you a flickr faves for 6 months! Not because there isn't some beautiful photography over th ere, but because I just haven't been as active at flickr. Now that things are "slower" here, there's time to admire other ppl's work again.

To see the photo larger, click on the link at the bottom.

You must go see #5, the Wild drummer. That guy is awesome!

1. Untitled, 2. Corina, 3. red, 4. Untitled, 5. The Wild Drummer, 6. 117 a, 7. Keala & Brian Engagement, 8. Goddess Ascending, 9. Untitled, 10. 5.100 // twinkle, twinkle little star, 11. Love is in the air, 12. 8 mm, 13. Burr Keeping warm, 14. Day 124/365: Hobbit, 15. Big Enough, 16. Cupcake Take Two, 17. Piece of Cake!, 18. 0202, 19. Elsie at 4 months, 20. 5501Fn, 21. Living in Art, 22. Tony & Diep Engagement, 23. 14+, 24. Front of my holivan, 25. Deer, 26. Untitled, 27. anomalous magnetic moment, 28. :: sea nymph ::, 29. Kasia and Wojtek, 30. DarbiGPhotography-missouri-wedding-photographer-wBK--123, 31. Noah, 32. Trash the dress 1, 33. little surfer girl, 34. Mud Turtle, 35. empress, 36. Beauty's Halo

Scrapbook Page - Whoooo Luvs you?

Listen, I told you it was scrapbook week.

Another set of pics from our trip to Branson. Also some paper that I *just* bought over the weekend. I like NEVER immediately use loose paper. lol. So that new rule is working for me. Only a couple sheets left and then I can move on to some other things.


I thought the owls, and their sunglasses kinda worked good together.


One of the owls that was going to be covered by photos, I cut out, and put on top of the printed owl with pop dots to give it some dimension.


Paper: Jilly Bean Soup (trees/owls), Stripes, My Mind's Eye
Chipboard shape: Recollections
Letters: Thickers - American Crafts
Border punch - Martha Stewart Crafts
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