Thursday, December 27, 2012

I'm exhausted

And I still have another Christmas yet to go!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


Boo says Meowy-chwistmas.

Mack and Jingles say "who is this interloper and get him out of my house! (and we're not talking about Santa)"

Hope you and yours had a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Somewhere, out there, I imagine a pilot saying....


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Older or dumber? A quandry

This past six months has been kind of rough on me and I can't figure out if it's because I'm getting older or because I'm getting dumber.

God forbid it's both.

Like for example, back this summer I was being all smarmy as I walked along the deck joists, literally thinking at that moment "damn I'm getting pretty good at this."  Just about then I stepped on a short, unfastened deck board and fell through the deck.  Thankfully, the deck was only a couple feet off the ground or I'd have been a goner.  It didn't save me though from looking like I got the crap beat out of me.

I warned Gene a couple times to be nice to me or I'd take photos and fake some tears.
That usually straightens him right up. ;)

Then in July, 2 days before a wedding double header weekend, I'm on a shoot and I feel a weird pop in my knee.  It doesn't "feel right".  The next day, I'm standing in my bathroom wondering if I should go to the chiro or not and as I turn to leave the bathroom, my knee twists and I about hit the floor.

A call to the chiro, begging him to take me in, a tearful visit and some acupuncture got me to where I was at least able to fumble about.  I made it through the double header weekend ok, but I had to make a knee brace (they didn't have any that fit me right).

That took about 4 months to fix itself.  Apparently I have had problems with my lower back so long that it's throwing muscles in my legs out of whack, that's putting pressure on a kneecap.
Who knew right?

Then to top it all off, about a month ago, I went to sit down at my desk at home.  Above my desk is a bank of cabinet doors.  Truth is, I'm really bad about leaving cabinet doors open.  I didn't see it, and hit my head on it.  Which doesn't sound that bad except for the part that the cabinet door was pointing directly at me, and the door edge comes to somewhat a point.

I've never hit my head so hard in my life.

I sat down and moaned a bit.  Instant headache.
Amusing enough, my husband said nothing.  Not even a "everything ok?" 
*growly face*

Maybe he was waiting for me to stop breathing.

Anyway, It took 4 days for my headache to go away and I'm pretty sure I had a mild concussion.  Or maybe it was just that dent I put in my skull.
No lie.
I now have a dent IN MY SKULL.

If I touched it for several weeks, it would give me a headache.  Yep, pretty sure someone would want to stick me in a big tube scan my brain if I complained.

Maybe they would figure out if my brain had turned to mush.
Damn kids.  I used to be normal.

Stop laughing.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Wanna win some free diamond earrings?


Go over to this link and click like.  If you click share too, you'll be entered twice! Gene is giving away a pair of 1/4 tcw earrings.   No catch, just spreading the good cheer.

See, he's a way bigger softy than he looks!

Hurry, deadline is Saturday night!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A story about the Pop Tart Fairy

This calls for a pop tart haiku
oh pop tart so sweet
Pop Tart Fairy flutters by
come rot out my teeth

On a cool crisp day in late November of every fall, if you're very, very patient, quiet and don't use any big swear words, you'll get a visit from the pop tart fairy.

The pop tart fairy is much like the tooth fairy.  Only fatter and her wings are smaller.  Oh, and she doesn't leave you a quarter under your pillow, she leaves you a pop tart on your deck.

So children, if you're very quiet and still you might catch a glimpse of her as she deposits a brown sugar and cinnamon pop tart on your hand rail, there just for you for being good girls and boys.

Either that or a teenage boy accidentally leaves them as he locks himself out of the house on the way to school.
Something like that.

So proud that my kid knows how to break into houses.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Signs, signs everywhere there's signs

If you've been following along, you know that our world has been turned kind of upside down by the lost of a job and the start of a new business in the past few months.
Things are going well, and we are making headway.  For starters, the decals for the truck are finally done.  This was a *really big deal* to Gene.  We tried to buy them on the internet, but a few days after we finally ordered, they were underwater on the east coast due to Hurricane Sandy.
Some investigating, and we found Eye candy Graphics.  Local, fast and installed by them, FOR LESS MONEY.  Note to self: check local more often.
 Apparently this was a bigger deal to Gene than I thought it was!  He's been happy for days that his big bad truck is advertising him all over 4 states now.

In other news, this was my view for half the day on Friday:

 I looked out my window to see that, while inside, I was doing this:

 Yep, painted my own sign too!  Not that we don't have some kick ass sign people in the area, but because I really am trying to save money.  Plus I've done it before and kind of had an idea of what I wanted done. 

At one time, I had this crazy Idea I'd be a sign painter.
Wow am I glad I didn't do that.  I start getting squirrelly somewhere around the 3rd coat of paint.

Very very carefully, we lifted the sign into place and Gene secured it to the wall (in lots of places!)  Drilling into brick is not fun, and he had to wear hearing protection even.


It's done!

We're officially official!

BTW, it says "and Gallery" because when we finally get everything settled, I'll be painting in this space also and will probably share some of my artwork there that people can stop in and buy if they like.  Or just browse.  Or stop in and chit chat.  Or annoy me... whatever your pleasure. :)

Hopefully within the next few months it will get even better.  We have a couple exciting things up our sleeves and I'll share as we go.  Have to keep them secret for a while first though!

I promise that sometime soon this blog will go back to being a blog about something besides a storefront.

Pinky swear.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

My other baby

Even though, Tanner is "technically" my baby boy (even at 18), Jingles will always be my *other* baby.  Like I gave birth to the furry little brat myself.

Sorry Boo Kitty.
You should let me hold you like a baby and kiss YOUR face, and maybe you'd have a shot at the ring.

Friday, November 23, 2012

*knock knock knock* Who's There? Door. Door who? Doorn't you glad to see me?

About a month ago, Gene and I went to Lowe's for somesuch.  Probably to spend money, because that's what we do now.. spend all the money.
When I saw it, from across the aisle, the most beautimous door, like... ever.
You see, Gene and I live by this rule.  Decide what you want, and then wait.
Sometimes years.
A few years ago, I decided I wanted a new front door.  I hate the one I have (it's in a corner wasting space) and it's pretty ugly.  I painted it red but that's about as exciting as it gets.
So when I saw "the doors" I was so excited. 
Seems they were custom doors that were returned by the customer.  Nothing wrong with it, he just wanted to put the doorknobs on himself and they pre-cut the holes.
Their mistake, my gain.
So they were regularly $2500 doors.  Marked down to $1500.
Except I didn't want to pay $1500.  I never want to pay full price, and IMO, a returned door at $1500 is full price. 
Everything is negotiable.  So we went home, Gene called Lowe's and offered them $1000 and they turned us down.  Said that decision came from corporate.
A couple weeks later, we had to stop in again and thought we'd look, just to see.  As we walked across the store, we could see that they were still there!  Pitter patter my heart.
Close enough... I gasp!  $700!
I couldn't rip off the "for sale" tag fast enough!  MINE ALL MINE!
So, fortunately we had the trailer with us, and fortunately, they have a forklift because those bad boys are heavy!

 It took 4 guys to load it.

And one person to be paranoid all the way home it'd fall off the truck.
*that would be me*

But dammit, look hout purdy they are!  I love you doors.  I want to murrrryyyy youuuuu. *mwah*

But for now, they sit on my 92% finished deck waiting for warmer days.
Which is like.. what... May?

Merry Christmas to me.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

It's a puzzle!

Something's..... just... *different* about this photo.
Corn?  Nope.. it's been gone for a while now.
Jeep?  No, Tanner's had that for a few months now.
Kayak? Well, yeah, Tanner got a new kayak a few days ago.  I admit I'm a little jealous, I want one.
But that's really not it either.  Something's just offish.
 Maybe this pic will help:

Do you see it yet?

My kid has a beautiful smile!
Yep, 6 *years*, thousands of $$ and those braces are FINALLY GONE.  His teeth look so nice now and he looks even more handsome and grown up.


Excuse me for a moment while I get all verklempt.

Ok, I'm back.
He's been warned not to get in a bar fight and lose any teeth because when he gets back, I'll break both his legs.

Love you though Tanner!

P.S.  I swear I have another kid.  He's pretty good looking too.  Hoping to sneak a pic or two of him and his girlfriend this weekend if he'll let me.  I'm sure *she* will, him?  He's a kersmudgin.

Turkey day!

Happy Thanksgiving from
Cease Fire Ranch!
Sorry, this is the closest thing I have to 2 turkeys

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Birthday Dear! Your gift is a .....

Brand new business!
All day on Gene's birthday (Sunday) was spent working on the shop being hell bent on getting the sign(s) painted and up.  Fact is, we got the glass shop sign done, and I feel like taking my time on the photo sign, because frankly, it's going to be *harder*.
As in...
More difficult.

And this is what he did while I painted his sign.
Online shopping.  We call it "jewelry porn".  He calls it "working".

We finally finished, right as it started to get dark.  We almost had to hang it in complete darkness, we had only a few minutes left.  Street lights were on but we made it!  It was a big deal because the scaffolding was borrowed and that sign was heavy.  Plus hung pretty high.  Hard to do with a ladder.

Next day touch up, and we're done!

And a little bit to show you my side of the building.  New paint (the ugly flag border had to go!), new trim work, cute furniture.  Cute cute. 

Lots of great ideas coming this way!  I have my first clients schedule to come to the office in a WEEK!

Who wants to help decorate?
Budget is $12.17

Friday, November 16, 2012

Good news, bad news, great news

So a couple weeks ago, an idiot ran over our mailbox.
I was so mad I chased him down without my bra on.  So you KNOW I was mad.
They had to come out and dig a new hole for the new mailbox.  I don't think he was happy about it.  Maybe he should chase me down without his bra on and tell me about it.
So anyway, we're tired of the "mailbox saga".  I think we're on our 4th mailbox now in 5 years.
Gene is hell bent on putting in a steel pipe.  10 feet long.  Packed with concrete.
Success!  That's what we'll be getting.  So the next guy that comes along and decides to play runsies overs with our mailbox will get a big surprise and a big dental bill for losing 7 teeth in his dashboard and a bumper.
Hoping that's not me.
So what does this have to do with Boo?
Our next door neighbor is great.  They come down and scoop our drive with his bobcat in the winter when it's bad.  We buy him beer as a thank you.  If we need to borrow a weird tool for an hour, he'll probably have it and always lets us.  We give him eggs as a thank you.
So Gene stopped down at his house tonight to ask him if he would bring the bobcat down and help us get the pipe a few more feet into the ground (our hole is only 4' deep). 
Good news:  Yes.  He'll be here at 9 a.m.
Bad news: He informed Gene that they have such a possum problem (I know, we have them here and he's right on a creek bed) that they are making their horses sick.  So they are putting out poison that will kill every possum for 3 miles.
(I'm pretty ok with that part).
Worse news:  He didn't know if it'd have any affect if Boo Kitty came around.  Boo likes to go on "explores" and disappears for 2-3 days at a time.  I'm pretty sure he's up there chasing mice.  Or girls.  Or girls.
Great news:  Gene said "I swear to Jesus I'm a max 3 cat family".
What did he just say?
He said Boo can live inside!
So, because we didn't know how fast the poison was going to happen, Boo is now sitting in a cat carrier in my kitchen under my desk. Hoping we can find a vet on Saturday to get him snip snipped because I really don't need a bunch of cat urine marking my walls.
Everyone has sniffed everyone else.
2 hisses and life goes on (well, if you're a fat indoor cat anyway).
So I got my Christmas present early.
Yep, I asked for Boo to be an indoor kitty.
There is a santa!  He's a grumpy glass man in Missouri.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Life by bullet points

  • Had my first show ever.  It ended up being lots of gifty type stuff, and a bit of art.  Not exactly what I was expecting, but I still did pretty good.    Good thing, because my days were off by one and if it hadn't been for my sister pointing it out on a facebook post, I would have showed up an entire day late.  Man, would Gene have been pissed.

    And me.
  • I sold quite a bit of stuff.  Figured out people want prints and notecards, not originals.  Great, because I can sit on my butt and watch the printer make prints and notecards.  Sweet.

    Yep, that pic has a blurred out section.  There's a couple christmas gifts hanging up there that I don't want ppl to potentially see!
  • Was so busy for a week trying to get ready that my house was a disaster.  It's slightly better now, which means it's back to its usual self.
  • Tanner marched in his last parade.  I may or may not have been tearing up when I took this picture.  Probably not... but maybe.

    I think it's when I saw him giving hand signals to the other kids made me realize how he's gone from just a little kid, to a young man who's a leader and role model to the younger kids.

    I might have sniffled all afternoon when I thought about it... maybe even now.
    or not.

  • I'm behind on editing, but catching up.  Mornings spent editing, daytimes working at getting the shop/studio/office ready, evenings spent editing and drinking copious amounts of wine.
  • My eldest critter turned 23.

    That was a hell of a feat considering I'm 28.  Let me tell you what.
  • Voted!  Tan voted for the first time ever.  Pretty damn proud I raised a couple of good conservative young men.  That doesn't happen very often - when I was his age I was a liberal. 

    Things didn't turn out how we'd hoped, but we'll cross our fingers for the best outcome.  I try not to be political here, so I'll leave it at that.
  • I was so busy last week, I forgot to brush my teeth a couple times.  I made up for it and brushed my teeth double the next couple days.  That counts right?
  • The shop is looking pretty kick ass.  I think I finally have Gene on the same page with me, that it will be both a glass shop and photography office. (Studio down the road is the plan).  I pretty much told him that I was going to decorate it how I wanted and he responded "I don't care if it's pink and fluffy as long as we have an office."

    So why is he dragging his feet on the dancing flamingos and the teddy bear collection?  Sheesh.

  • This is our new door for the bay.  It's been closed up for years, now we have another door to slam when we get mad at each other... which is NEVER.

    Uh. huh.
  • Boo kitty keeps taking off.  Is it high season already?  He'll disappear just long enough for me to freak out and worry that the coyotes that pass here every night at 10 p.m. ate him for dinner.

    Kinda contemplating letting him keep his nether giblets since they seem to keep him pretty scrappy.
  • Had to get internet at the office, because I'm sure as HELL not sitting there all day long looking pensively out the window.  Holy cow, I should have told them I was living there, business internet is really expensive.  Oh, and now, I have a phone line I don't need.  If only I'd known, I'd wouldn't have gotten the extra cell phone line.  Le Sigh.
  • Thanksgiving and Christmas should be a bumpy ride this year.  That's all I got to say about that.
  • Except my MIL - we're going black friday shopping.  Gonna show her how it's done.  Put on your walkin' shoes Carol.  Oh, and do some warm up stretches.  When all else fails, throw elbows. Use a wide stance for better balance.

    now go!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

What I've been doing is....

Getting ready for the Sugar Plum Festival!
It really kind of snuck up on me.  Well, literally, thank GOD I mentioned it on facebook because someone pointed out that my days were off.  Which really threw a wrench in my schedule.  I sure thought I was on top of things.  Oops.  I was off a whole day.  That could have been really embarassing.
and maddening.
Anyway, I'll be there for 3 days showing my work, which includes the Aspens above (20x10).  I don't have as much done as I'd love to have done, but when you're just starting out, it's hard to have a lot of things!
If you're nearby, please come visit.  Thursday evening 5:30-8:00 (preview), Friday 10-8 and Saturday 10-4.  There's lots of artists and vendors that will be there.  They take down the whole museum and set let the vendors take over!
Pictures soon.  Lots going on, haven't had time to post.

Friday, November 2, 2012

She crawled through a half mile of sh!t and came out clean on the other side

I made it.
I made it I made it I made it.
I made it through hell month.  I know, that sounds terrible and I apologize if you had me take your photo in October in any way.  October is absolutely the busiest month of the year for me.  Lots of seniors, engagements, several weddings, and throw in a few families.  This year, I didn't push getting shoots in any way because I was worried about having enough time to accomplish anything with a new business starting and being at the helm for that, plus my regular duties, plus getting ready for an art show, plus, plus, plus.
Calgon...  I'm here, come get me.
So I'm happy to say that I made it, and it wasn't as bad as I'd thought it would be.  I actually ended up doing as many shoots as normal and I seemed to have time to spare. 
Of course, as soon as I say that, I'll be bombarded with things to handle, so scratch that!
P.S. That photo above is a full moon rise I witnessed as I returned from a my last shoot of the month.  Seems fitting.
P.P.S Name that movie in the title.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Sell! All! The! Things!!

A few weeks ago, I decided that I'd finally get around to selling some of my scrapbook stuff.  Yeah, I know, right.  So you're saying keeping it in a laundry basket in my scrapbook room blocking fire access is a *bad* thing?
Get out.
So I blew off the dust that collected over the past 4 years and took a few pics.  On facebook, for almost every town or area, you'll see a swap/sell group of some sort.  Some are just for clothes, or only for kids stuff, but many are just whatever.
Well, except for the tyrannical overlord owners making ridiculous rules, other than THAT you can list pretty much whatever.

I thought I'd take all my profits and buy myself a really expensive watercolor palette I've been wanting for about 4 months now but have been too cheap to buy.  Actually, on sale it's a pretty good deal, and it's super dreamy and worth it.

What I found out, was that it took just one day for me to make enough money for my palette.  It also took me about 3 days to make enough for my palette, my brand new dream porch swing and money left over.


I was making better than garage sale prices, and I didn't have to schlep all my stuff out to some tables and hope people show up.... then dicker over a quarter.

So I decided to set a goal for myself a few days ago.  Not only would I get rid of a bunch of crap in the house, but in return, I'd gain (hopefully) enough cash to buy the dream camera I'm wanting.  In theory, I could buy it now if I wanted (I've been saving for over a year for my studio, but since that's on hold I have the cash). 

However, I'm highly motivated by challenges and saving money by putting it in jars (that's for our hawaiian vacation someday), envelopes or savings accounts.  So instead I will become a minimalist.

If you come into my house and see strikingly less items, don't freak out (especially my family), I'm not losing my mind.  However, maybe this will keep that show hoarders at bay for a couple days.

Who am I kidding?  I've barely clawed my way out of the scrapbook room yet.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

So, where do we stand?

On the porch I mean.  Yes... we get to officially stand on it, and even walk on it!
I haven't updated on the porch addition for over a month, I'm sure you've been waiting on pins and needles.
 Mid September we put in the last of the decking.

Let me tell you, what a happy moment.  That's me holding the last piece that goes on the corner near the house (we did diagonal decking).  See how happy I am?

It was short lived, this is not the last piece.  We forgot about the other corner on the other end that was screwed up.  I was mad when I got down there because it was cut all wrong (ahem husband cough)... so I ended up taking no photos down there at all.

So let's pretend this is it and we're happy.

 Gene drilling the "last" decking board.  We used over 1700 (about 10 pounds) of invisible deck screws.  I'm still finding them around the house in the bathroom, on counters, in drawers from when we dumped pockets.

This is the camo system and dude, it's awesome.  Do this!

 Boo approves of this decking.

I do too.  No worries about how it looks around the base of the posts, those are getting covered by trim work (which is partially done).  Hello winter that came faster than planned.

*insert a very long break here*

We really needed a break, but if we busted our humps for 2-3 days we'd be done.  Like DONE DONE.  Like, nothing else to do done. 

But we don't fly like that.  We prefer 92% finished projects thankyouverymuch.

We also decided to throw in losing a job and creating a business in there, so forgive us for maybe being a little busy.

However something awesome did happen.

This sign has been in my front door for 3 years.
No lie.

People have been directed to where the back door is for a while now.  Fed Ex and UPS really don't need to be told, they still go there.  I mean, it was obvious you weren't going in the front door, I just wanted to show them how to come to the back door so they can see my cat box and recycling as they enter!

But the exciting part is that we have front steps!!

They are just the side steps over the pre-existing sidewalk, but it's now fuctional!  These are the ones that most ppl will probably always use.

However, we have a set we'll be building (probably in the spring) that will be a nice wide, deep grand looking set of steps up to the front door.  I've wanted a set like that for years and years.

The cool part is, I taught myself how to cut stringers.  Stringers are the boards that are notched out on an angle that the steps (risers and runs) sit on and are attached to.  I think I did a pretty good job.  And really, it's not hard once you figure it out.

So you know what that means?
When you come to visit, please use the front door.

This is so I don't have to scoop the cat box for nuggets quite as often.

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