Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Two Haikus

Finished reading books.
Will return to blogging soon.
Am all burned out now.

Knitting will begin,
and more good books will be read,
first I'm off to sleep.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Oh Hi

Sorry. I've been reading. Only two thirds of a book to go!

I will return to blogging soon. The brain is occupied currently.

(If only I didn't have to go to work, too!)


Thursday, October 23, 2008


So I read this in two nights. Ahem.

Aren't I a little old to be devouring vampire love stories?

(But it was actually pretty good. I could give an actual critical review, with quotes and everything, but I'm withholding judgement until I read the second one. Or third. -- Some things were very good. Some things not so much.)

Young adult novels have always been some of my favorites. I think we are forever young adults. That is the age who makes up who we are. I used to disappear into a book regularly during the "young adult" reading stage. I would go to the library, check out the maximum five books, read them in a week, and go again after school as soon as I could. I learned how to get things through Interlibrary Loan. I read everything, though...not just young adult novels. I even read essays about literature, and books of short stories. I learned which kind of books I liked and learned how to explain why I didn't like others. I escaped my little town, the friends that didn't understand what I liked. I learned that not everyone was like me. Books outlet.

And when I wasn't reading, I was writing. This is why I majored in English in college, because I couldn't imagine doing anything besides going to class with a book, eating with a book, staying up late with a book, drying my hair with a book, and, well, you get the picture.

But writing is so hard, and reading once you've taken a few writing classes...whew boy. It's hard, sometimes, for me to get past the critical reading in my head. But I persevered through the first obvious character introductions, ignored a few cliches, and, suddenly, was drawn in. The way I feel when I read these or these or these. What a thing, to be able to create another world! An interesting, vibrant, believable world. And then, to be able to draw people into it, to help people who are awkward or strange or different (most of us, the interesting ones, are these things anyway) feel a part of this And Stephenie Meyer definitely belongs to this set of rare writers. I will read more than just Twilight, as soon as I can figure out where the library is here. And what I need to get a card.


Monday, October 20, 2008

Things Accomplished

I have a list:
1. Roxie had her annual vet appointment. He said he had no comment at all during her physical, which is apparently rather unusual (and a good thing), and she is "ideal" as far as her weight is concerned. She got all her shots and is stocked up on heartworm medicine again.
2. Drove to my parents house and put Roxie in the back yard. She spent most of the weekend out there, happily chasing squirrels.
3. Bought some smaller clothing (yay!).
4. Ate wonderful fried fish topped with sweet relish and onions. (You must try this. It is amazing.)
5. Ate pecan cobbler. Also wonderful.
6. Watched my brother play soccer and win. Twice. He made an unassisted goal (I think that's what it's called). I was very proud of him, even with as little as I can understand about soccer. I do understand this: he really is very good, and it's fun to watch the teams play now that they have more control. I need to learn a bit more about soccer, so that I can cheer intelligently.
7. Went to a church bazaar. Had beans, and a slice of strawberry cake that was almost as good as my Ma-maw used to make. I bought some plum jelly to eat on my diet toast in the mornings.
8. Bought this shower curtain on sale at Kohl's. (Used up the rest of a gift card from last Christmas. Ahem.) So now I'm on the way to a decorated bathroom. Sort of. I didn't buy new towels. I'm still considering my options.
9. Watched W. with Zachary. This was interesting. I'm still pondering it over. Since I'm not sure how accurate it is, I can't really judge Bushie based on it. But it is always interesting to try and view things from another perspective. Over the years I've often wondered what on earth the man was thinking. I do like that the movie made him seem human. I would like to see someone explain the fact/fiction parts--but who can except for Bush himself? Highly unlikely. Better for all of us to just realize that everyone really is doing the best he/she can, given their gifts and abilities.
10. Went to my Dad's church.
11. Planted pansies in the back yard, in the holes that Roxie has dug there (sorry Dad and Shirley...).
12.Baked cookies for Kairos.
13. Discovered that the striped socks fit Shirley's feet, so I guess she gets them for Christmas (provided I finish the second one, which is always a big IF).
14. Talked a lot.
15. Drove home this morning early, and made it to my house in an hour. (With traffic, it usually takes an hour and a half.)
16. Left Roxie sleeping in bed and came to a busy day at work.

And, I suppose, that's the end of the weekend!


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Random Creativity

I did watch the presidential debate this evening. And last night I watched this episode of "Frontline" on PBS. I am all politicked out. (Sort of--I mean, I always have an opinion. Ask me.)

So, no more presidential discussion. (I have been rather restrained, lately.)

During debate watching, Roxie and I engaged in a few creative pursuits, including:

painting improvement

There is something seriously wrong with this purchased canvas--the paint won't stick in some spots, as you can see with all the white areas. But I think it fits, since it's supposed to be all windblown and everything. Not sure if this is done yet, anyway. I'm putting it back on the bookshelf to look at for a while.

sock completion

This is the first of some basic self-striping's a bit big, so I guess the pair won't be for me...

rope tugging

picture taking, and

general relaxation.

And, oh look: the Random Number Generator was kind to me! I won a contest on the Quiddity Blog! How fun... I get some yarn!!! For free!!! Thanks, Jane!


Monday, October 13, 2008

Our Weekend

Rox and I had a good weekend.

Friday, before the company arrived, there was complete demolition of both tennis ball and rope toy:

Then there was a quick clean up, and I departed for the State Fair of Texas with my family (pictures to come; I didn't take my camera). There were crafts, and a car building, and a butter sculpture, and a sand sculpture, and dancing dogs, and baby rabbits, and so many other things. And food. I felt like Templeton with his smorgasbord in Charlotte's Web. Oh it was a delight...if you are going to ruin your diet, this is the way to do it. All of the fried things you can imagine! I sigh a little bit, remembering it... mmmm...

Well, moving on. Saturday morning, my mother dearest arrived to spend some time on the couch with Roxie:

We had wonderful food at a local vegan restaurant: vegetable wraps, and potato salad, and orange wedges, and an oatmeal cranberry cookie, and arrived back to my apartment in time to meet Roxie's next visitor:

It's Danielle!

After zooming around the apartment for a while, she settled back onto her favorite couch spot, and resumed the very serious business of relaxing:

What a wonderful time we had! We saw a terribly costumed (but well read) version of "The Merchant of Venice," went to church, drank lots of hot tea and coffee, knitted together, and (my favorite part) visited happily.

It was wonderful to have both my mother and Danielle here. Thanks to both of them for coming! I love them both! My little apartment didn't feel crowded at all, just comfortably full.


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Politics, Again

Even if you were only a brief visitor to this blog, I think you could easily figure out which candidate I support for president. So that is all I am going to say about the debate this evening. Instead, I am going to discuss dogs.

After the debate, Roxie and I were out walking around the apartment when a door opened. Out ran two chihuahuas, one of whom broke away from its leash and ran up and bit Roxie, who had simply stopped to look. Of course she snarled back and I held her as firmly as I could until the little dog's owner came up and was able to pull her dog away. Roxie wasn't hurt, though she did have some slobber on her leg.

Here is my problem with little dogs: they are handled by people who are blind to their bad qualities. They naturally mistrust big dogs, but they like to bark a lot from a distance. And the handlers seem to think that the big dogs are at fault, even as their little thing is yapping in the back.

Also, little dogs are always lap dogs. They may not be very smart, but they are very small and can be carried around. They have sat on the laps of royalty for years. I think innately they absorb this sense of importance, and carry that attitude with them everywhere, whether they are still in royal families or not.

The big dogs have, for centuries, been the worker dogs. They have toiled hard to earn their sometimes meager food. They are able to retrieve dinner, to guard homes, to herd sheep, to pull through snow and ice. Many have to sleep outside. They must learn to respect their people and follow rules because they cannot simply be picked up. The control their handlers have over them is built through mutual understanding and cooperative effort, not through muscling.

And here's the truth: we all know that the big dog could kill the little one if it wanted to. But it doesn't. And that's what makes the big dog better. And really, would you rather have a little dog who talks a lot and lacks substance? Or a big dog who acts with restraint and understanding?

Well, I guess I wasn't really done talking about the debate.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Happiness is...

I do love an occasional weekend at home with just the dog and me.

I had a good time:
1. Staying up to the wee hours of the morning.
2. Burying back under the sheets until waaaay after time to be at work (and staying there until even after my normal snack time).
3. Painting.
4. Knitting.
5. Sitting on the patio reading.
(Again, looking back, I appear to enjoy the more intellectual pursuits... except for sleeping, as I'm not sure how intellectual that is...)

Roxie, though. She enjoyed true happiness. And what is true happiness?

True happiness is when the human digs into the toy box and discovers:

your old rope toy and a green tennis ball.

Oh, joy of joys!


And one more...

I also did this, finishing it up this morning:

(Looking at it there makes me see it needs something more. I'll get to that. So think of this as a first draft. This one is all mine, no copying. See Roxie? Dogs love the fall. Me, too.)


Saturday, October 4, 2008

Creative Pursuits, Continued

And they are both done!

There's this:

And this:

And that last one hanging in my dining nook:

A whole day of entertaining, for $0? Priceless.


Creative Pursuits

And what did you do today, Shannah?

Well, I knit on a hat for Ro:

And then I painted for me:

And now I'm watching Mythbusters.

Ah, a sucessful Saturday. :-)

Would you like a few details on the creative pursuits?

The hat is the Skull Hat from Knit Two Together, and is a redo for Ro since the first hat I made him is woefully small. So much so that if I could find a kid that likes pirates, or skulls, or black and gray, I would give it to them. I can't even wear that hat. This one seems to fit much better so far, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I could have swatched, but that's not nearly as much fun.

The painting is, frankly, a poor knockoff of this painting by Masha D'Yans. I saw it at Urban Outfitters, but scoffed at the $50 and thought "I can do that," so I am. I didn't want strawberries on it. I put red-purple flowers instead. It's drying, and then I'll go back and put the rings on it like she did. I'm sorry for copying. I am not a true artist. But... I loved it... and... I wanted to change it... :-)