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1/25/12

25 Jan

What I’m up to:

– I am finally getting over a cold that’s left me barely functioning for the entire month of January. I know some of you were a little disappointed about the lack of a Follow Friday post last week, but I had been running on empty for days and halfway through editing I knew it was a lost cause. It will be back with a vengeance next week, though, so don’t worry. It’s not going anywhere! In the meantime, check out my new 50 Thrifty Fun Things To Do series. I’m drawing on all my experience of taking care of Isobel while working with a budget that dips into the negative numbers on a regular basis.

– Speaking of vengeance, last week I asked you to send in your questions about me so I could complete the versatile blogger award. I received  a bunch of emails, DMs and tweets after I threatened people to post Beck lyrics if no one responded. Well call me a dead hobo on the patio! After that threat I was inundated with responses so I will answer a couple per week until I make it through all of them. If you still have a question for me it’s not too late–email, tweet, comment, or DM me and I’ll answer it in a following Snapshot post.

– Isobel occasionally refers to Anthony as “Swiper.”

– Next month I’m going away with some friends to visit my dear friend Stephanie in Reno. I’m excited to cross this item off my life list, even though I’ll be going without Anthony and Isobel. Since we started a family Anthony’s gone away for work and fun a couple times, so now it’s my turn. I’m going to be going four hours away over Donner Pass with my besties. What could go wrong? P.S. Can you be kicked out of a state for being inappropriate? Asking for my friends. Specifically.

-Also, this is the first time I can remember going overnight somewhere without Anthony since 1998. Holy shit.

– Since I’ve been sick I’ve watched a lot of Star Trek, and, consequently, Isobel has watched a lot of Star Trek. Fortunately, she loves it and dances and shrieks with joy when she hears the theme song. I shit you not. It’s hilarious to hear her take on what she sees, too. To her, Klingons are lions, the Borg are robots, and Worf’s son Alexander is a girl.

– I have been getting more photography work, which is good because I feel really guilty about quitting my job to stay home with Isobel in such rough economic times. I’m not going to lie, we’re personally dealing with some rough finances and so are most of my friends. A friend recently sent me a link about the Ten Worst Cities for Finding a Job. If you look on that list, the first five cities are within about an hour from where I live. The other day a girl came to our door and asked if I had any scrap metal for her family to sell. It’s so bad  nearly grabbed my bindle, flung Isobel into a sack of potatoes, and rode the rails to Canada.

– Yesterday we were in line for checkout at the grocery store when I noticed Isobel was chewing on a head of broccoli. I let her. Because it was broccoli.

– One of my recent shoots has been for my bestie’s Etsy shop. She is selling some awesome Valentine’s cards, including robots, Alice in Wonderland, and my favorite, the Anti-Valentine. I really love the Eat Me/Drink Me tags. How perfect would those be attached to a plate of homemade cookies for a housewarming gift? Too perfect.

– If you’re into vintage clothes, check out my friend Valerie’s shop. She has been uploading like mad and I’m personally drooling over several dresses, particularly this 1960s rainbow dress. I probably shouldn’t show you this adorable children’s owl sweater or orange townhouse dress.

Little Big Links:

– Thank the Sweet Baby Picard Jesus those Princess Bride movie remake rumors are false.  Via Amanda Stretch

Goats in a tree. This is called “making my day.” Via Ian Boudreau

Reading Rainbow meets Star Trek. This derailed my whole afternoon. Via Veronique Rickets

– Good as backup NFMBFTKS, but not as primairy NFMBFTKS . Read the first review. For Samurai Ninja Rockstars, only. Via Chris.

Downton Abbey Drinking Game. To my utter delight, Anthony enjoys watching this with me–without drinking, even!

Feminism does not predict poor romantic relationships, in fact quite the opposite. A fascinating study. Via Justin

Weekly Photos:

Reader Question:

This post is running waaaay long, so I’ll answer just a few.

1. Why the Viking liking?

My family is Swedish-American on both sides, and we still have a pretty strong Swedish culture three generations out. I grew up with lots of stories about Sweden, about my pioneer relatives (it was all very Kirsten), and Scandinavian culture in general. I live in an area settled by many Scandinavian families and my parents used to be very involved in the local Scandinavian heritage festival. So it’s just something I grew up around.  That and vikings are badass.

2. Do you still go in your child’s room at night to see if she’s breathing?

Oh hell yes. Though my main paranoia is in regards to her choking. I still want to slice grapes into miniscule pieces for her. I got too far. It’s totally irrational. She has learned she can fake cough to get my attention because she knows I’ll come running.

3. Are you a loser, baby?

In the time of chimpanzees, I was a monkey. Butane in my brain and I became the junky with the plastic eyeball. Spray paint the vegetables dog food skull with the beefcake pantyhose. Kill the headlights and put it in neutral. Stock car flaming with a loser in the cruise control. Baby’s in Reno with the vitamin D, got a couple of couches, sleep on the love seat. Someone keeps saying I’m insane to complain about a shotgun wedding and a stain on my shirt. Don’t believe everything that you breath you got a parking violation and a maggot on your sleeve. So shave your face with some mace in the dark. Saving all your food stamps we’re burning down the trailer park.

Yo.

Cut it.

Little Big Links: Random Faves

4 Dec

There’s been kind of a lot going on in the past two days: appointments at the Cancer Center (wherein I found out I probably do not have a new, additional serious health problem), a new phone (finally! I’ve waited years!), Christmas decorating, a parade, friends over, and other things I’ve probably forgotten due to all the activity.  Enjoy some very awesome links I’ve been saving.

Onion article: Silvio Berlusconi Gets Penis Stuck In Wine Bottle Stuck In Prostitute

One of the best things I’ve read, ever: Breaking Dawn, Dress the Vampire Fetus and the Headboard

T-shirt: Hench 4 Life

For fans of This American Life: Ira Glass’ Sex Tape

Isobel’s Current Favorite Youtube Videos:

Little Big Links: Star Trek

3 Nov

The Star Trek Cookbook. Somehow, seeing Neelix on the cover is only slightly more appetizing than a photo of a replicator.

Rikers in Space. Jonathan Frakes and Mirina Sirtis discuss a spin off sitcom from ST:TNG called “Rikers in Space.” via Metafilter.

Amazing Illustrated Star Trek Wallpaper. Wow. via Sophie and Paul.

The Hipster Star Trek Tumblr. “Galaxy Class Starship? I only live on fixed-gear space stations.” via @iasshole.

Star Trek on Regretsy. The first item weirds me out.

Locutus of Borg Cross-Stitch. Lord, grant me to know the wisdom when resistance is futile.

Hull problems? I feel bad for you, son. Geordie has 99 problems.

As if the above photo wasn’t enough, lyrics. NSFW.

TNG Season 8 on Twitter. “The prime directive is completely ignored when Picard really wants to ride a Centaur. Geordie sleeps through the whole episode by accident.” Parody plots of ST:TNG.

The Corgiprise. “And you might say to yourself: ‘Hey, is there a picture of a Corgi dressed up as the USS Enterprise?’ And the answer is “Corgiprise” & YES.” Via Misskubelik.

Thrifty Living: Tips for Decorating for the Holidays on a Budget

13 Oct

It’s been ages and ages since I participated on Pinterest, mostly because I’ve been busy and Pinterest is a rabbit hole from which my attention span threatens never to return. There’s just too much good stuff and before you know it I’d be sitting at the computer in my underwear with unbrushed hair shoving cheerios into Isobel’s gaping maw while she clamors for attention because I just have to bookmark one… more… pin…

But it’s Halloween and I love this time of year so I made a board for Thrifty Halloween Decorating Ideas. Now that we’re down to one income I’ve been thinking more and more about inexpensive ways to decorate, and celebrate, the holidays. This is going to become even more important to me as Christmas approaches, and I wanted to share my thrifty decorating philosophy.

Location, Location, Location.

The first thing I did was select the areas I was going to decorate. In addition to having a limited budget, I have a limited amount of storage space for decorations. And anyway, I don’t have the energy to give my house a Halloween makeover every year–I just want to imbue it with a warm autumn spirit.

Handmade.

I prefer small decorations that are easy to store and are fun to look forward to every year. Even with my small budget I was able to add two pieces to my autumn stash: dishtowels and magnets.  (A few people wanted to know where I bought the towels: I ordered them from Zen Threads on Etsy. I love that company can’t recommend them enough.)

Some years I can’t afford to buy anything from Etsy, but when I can I do because it’s an investment I can use and enjoy every year. Especially now that Isobel is older. I remember how important pulling out those yearly decorations were to me as kid, and even now when I visit my parents a wave of nostalgic happiness washes over me when I see my mother’s black cat wreath hanging on the front door.

Some other really great handmade Halloween accessories on Etsy right now:

Candy Corn Bunting

Pin-up Witch Magnet

Super Cute Ghost & Pumpkin Magnets

Spider Hand Towel

Fancy Skulls Towel

Crocheted Pumpkin Towel Set

Use What You Got.

I used some things I already had from previous years, and since I was bored of them I used them in a new way.  I turned a metal sign into a huge fridge magnet, for example, and that was enough to make me happy. I also used stuff I already had in other parts of the house. Thrifty home decorating TV shows use this trick all the time and the homeowners are always thrilled. Something old feels new again, and it costs nothing.

Nature’s Gifts.

Decorating with nature is the ultimate thrifty option, and it comes with the benefit of being an enjoyable way to ignite a curiosity of the natural world in your children. We collected acorns this year, but pine cones, seed pods, dried berries, and, of course, leaves are available nearly everywhere, and they are free.

If you notice from the photo above, the acorns we gathered not even a week ago have mellowed into a deep brown, and their hard shiny shells remind me almost of coffee beans. So beautiful. I found this silver platter while thrifting and thought it perfect for storing the seeds. Larry, Moe and Curly, my paper skulls, look on, unaffected by autumn’s splendor.

I like just putting the beauty of nature on display, but you can take this one step further and turn them into crafts:

Acorn Magnets

Acorn Photo Frame

Preserved Leaf Garland

Crafty.

Other than adding spiders to some thrifted doilies I haven’t done any crafts this year. (Unless you count turning a metal sign into a huge magnet, which I don’t.) Crafts, however, are awesome.

See the nature crafts list above, plus:

Spray-Painted Pumpkins

Make ‘potion jars’ out of terrariums

DIY Luminaries

Lace pumpkins

Spray Paint can turn regular objects into Halloween decorations

Thriftin’ is Easy.

I bring up thrifting so often you probably think it’s my go-to solution for every problem. And you’d be right! You’d be amazed what you can find secondhand. I like to find stuff that’s not meant for Halloween specifically, but thrift stores save seasonal items and bring them out specifically for shoppers looking for decor at a bargain. Even the doily spiders were found in a thrift store! My favorite, of course, is still the skull specimen display created out of a thrifted cheese dome. Holiday decor is a pretty big deal at thrift stores. I once saw a fight break out two feet away from me because two customers saw a ghost-themed wall hanging at the same time.

I hope this post has inspired you to find thrifty ways to decorate. Have your own thrifty Halloween links to share? Share them in the comments! I’d love to add them to the Thrifty Halloween Decorating Ideas board.

Snapshot

6 Oct

Over the weekend I mentioned on twitter that I do a fairly accurate Baby Jaguar impersonation due to my frequent exposure to Go, Diego, Go. When challenged to offer up proof of this, I somewhat unwisely shot this video with Isobel. Just in case you were wondering what a grown-ass woman impersonating a talking jaguar sounds like. You’re welcome. I also maybe allude to the fact Foofa sounds high. Maybe.

Notable things that also I occurred this past week: I successfully put my bestie’s toddler Kingston down for a nap, Tristina surprised me by sending me these gorgeous handwarmers, and Laura posted this hilarious video. It’s at the end, so keep scrolling down past all those adorable photos of her daughter Sonora no matter how much it makes your ovaries twinge. Anthony and I also took some time out to go to the amazing Ansel Adams exhibit at a local museum and then on a grown-up date to a local brewery.

Yesterday I posted some Halloween decoration inspiration and I threatened to name my front door gnome Marky Mark if a better suggestion wasn’t made. My favorite nominees include: Gnoman Mailer, Gnome Chomsky, Gnome Deplume, Gnome Mercy, Snooki, and Matt Damon.  Marky Mark was declared the winner, however, after it was pointed out that the rest of my gnomes would qualify as the Funky Bunch. I think I’m going to have to update my Life List to reflect this ideal.

Little Big Shop

27 Aug

Here’s what I added to the shop last week:

Set of Five Blue Flower Mugs, I am in love with these. Flat out.

Petite Poppy Mug, I love the graphic nature of the bold black stalks.

Japanese Vintage Strip Mug, the palette and style of this mug give it both an authentic vintage, but also very modern, look.

Love Brings Rainbows Mug, it also brings syphilis, but that doesn’t look as good on a mug.

My computer is acting up, but hopefully Anthony can fix it by this weekend. Cross your fingers for me!

Clip Show

25 Aug

Remember when I  insulted Diego for running an episode that was at least half flashbacks? To wit,

To which my twitter wife Kristin replied:

True that, lady. Unfortunately I must be a recent convert, because today’s post is the internet version of a clip show. Praise Xenu! Some time ago I was tagged by Little Big reader Shelby Stidham to participate by listing seven of my most notable posts according to their corresponding category.

Here we go!

Most Beautiful Post: This is why we had kids. Try not to cry when you see the photos.

Most Popular Post: My most popular post was about Library Apps, which was featured on Freshly Pressed. It also lead to my first snarky comment—the high price of fame!

Most Controversial: I don’t think I have any posts that qualify, but one time my husband compared me to Dr. Dre. Just thought I’d share.

My Most Helpful: Some may point to 100 Games to Play with Baby or one of  the tutorial posts, but who are we kidding? This post teaches your baby to read ancient hieroglyphics.

Surprise Success: Remember that time I insulted Pinboard and said bad things about their moms? And then they emailed me back and were all nice and then offered librarians free accounts? Yeah. That.

Not Enough Attention: I really feel like this post didn’t get the attention from the gangster community that it deserved.

Most Proud: The time I met Anthony Bourdain was pretty awesome. Spoiler Alert! I think I found my Christmas card photo.

Typically this is the part of the meme where you tag other people to participate, but I’m really bad at these things, plus I don’t know any Scientologists, so I’d like to invite anyone reading this to join in the fun. If you want to participate, I’d love to read it!