Friday, March 31, 2006

Fat Bottomed Girls, You Make the Rockin' World Go Round

I got on the scale this morning; I have officially lost 90 pounds.

Before you all get excited, I have at least another 50 to go. And then I get to see a plastic surgeon. Because of the skin. Oh internet, the skin. And even after that, I'll have another 20 to 30 pounds to go. I'm not all the way there, but I'm getting there.

Anyway, my highest weight was at Griffin's first birthday -- I had packed on 65 pounds from the pregnancy and another 10 breastfeeding. Obviously, my boobs don't work right.

Neither does my metabolism.

When I was a baby, I was very sickly. Once I turned five, I got a lot better. But I still got sick a lot. Otherwise, I was a pretty average kid. Not much motivation physically, but I got straight A's.

Puberty came and fucked me all up.

Knowing what I know now about genetics and Celiac Disease, I am really a normal textbook case. When you are five and again during puberty a lot of your genes turn on and off (this is why most kids outgrow eczema by the time they are five). The theory is that during these times, allergies can also be turned "on and off."

Hitting 13 sent my world into a tailspin. The weight piled on (and considering the way my step-monster "cooked," it should be no surprise; the human body wasn't made to live on Hamburger Helper alone) and I got really sick. Not so sick that I couldn't go to school and function, but sick enough not to be happy and know that something was wrong.

By the time I was a senior in high school, I weighed quite a bit. After the holidays, I joined a well-know weigh-loss clinic and lost 60 pounds in four months. Then I got really sick.

Constantly going to the hospital sick. Constantly getting tested sick. It took two years for my doctor to do a MRI on my entire body. I had an ovarian cyst the size of a grapefruit.

Instead of doing anymore testing, I was cut open six weeks later -- and the cyst was gone. A year later I got referred to an excellent OBGYN who diagnosed me with PCOS. I was put on glucophage and I've been much better ever since.

But better didn't equal healthy. I was still sick. I got referred to an alternative doctor; I went through a lot of testing -- some of the results required a couple of weeks of treatments, others were years long. The one outstanding problem I have is Wilson's Syndrome, which is a thyroid disorder.

Those two diagnoses should have been enough to get me up to healthy. Following the regimes made me a lot better, but I still didn't consider myself healthy.

Getting my allergy results in October was a huge relief -- I was allergic to wheat (and for the record, I have not officially been diagnosed with Celiac Disease. It is very rare to have a wheat allergy and not have celiac; furthermore I didn't want to go through the time and expense of two years of testing when I already knew I'd have to eat a wheat-free diet, eating gluten-free is no more difficult. And the only way to treat a wheat allergy and celiac is to follow the proper diet).

Over the past three years, I have been working my ass off (literally), trying to lose weight. Going gluten-free has magically transformed how my body processes food -- which should be no surprise, since I am allergic to wheat.

My body is changing a lot lately, and everyone's taking notice. My typical response is, "I know! I have a neck! WHO KNEW?!"

I've giving my background history not to excuse my fat-ass-ness, but to discuss women and weight in our fucked-up society.

It has been going around the past few weeks (like weight is ever really far from people's minds, anyway) about how everyone feels fat. One person felt like a failure because she was a size eight, and was a size two when she got married; her husband told her it was like she broke a promise to him, she was not the woman he had married. Another person keeps a daily record of her exercise and calories on her blog; she's upset if she eats more than 800 calories in a day.

Are you fucking kidding me?

Why, as a society, do people worship these prepubescent waif children? Why are the young and rail thin our ideal of perfection?

Personally, I love my hips. I love my boobs. I love my strong arms that can pick up my 40-pound and a 32- pound children at the same time. I love my muscular thighs that can chase them around the house, yard and park. I love my lungs that can scream at them to stop! back up! and hands off! I love my knowledge as a woman, it is much more well rounded than that of a child.

I'll likely never be a size that is a single digit. And I'm okay with that. I can run up a flight of stairs without being out of breathe, and that's pretty damn awesome.

We need to get some perspective of what's healthy.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

I'm Only Happy When it Rains

Maybe it's because when I was a kid, my dad wouldn't let me play outdoors at school unless it was over 70 degrees (talk about overprotection for colds, gah). I loved the rainy days -- that meant all the kids spent recess inside with me, and we'd build big domino mazes, make craft projects or play "heads up 7-up."

View from our back door.
I heart me some rain.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Come On Baby, Finished What You Started. I'm Incomplete

Okay, I have a horrible learning curve. Oh well...

This took me 14 hours to make. Yes, 14. And lots of seam ripping. Lots and lots of seam ripping.

(Do not make fun of my fabric leftovers! What do you expect when I've got two boys? And no, I did not forget to post Griffin's completed birthday blanket. It was done, got washed and a bunch of fucking seams popped, and I've been diligently sewing those closed by hand. When it is officially completed, I'll post. Just hope I don't set the damn thing on fire first.)

But see how pretty it is?

So, prototype one is down. I was going to make two practice ones, but my MIL's birthday is quickly approaching AND Aaron came home last night saying he was getting picked up to go out of town at 4am this morning.


This one took me two hours to make. And I didn't think that was all that damn bad.

See the pretty lining?

So, now I have to pack it up and ship it.

Oh, yeah -- and because Aaron's out of town, our washer and dryer are not being delivered until Tuesday. Damndamndamn.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Every Little Thing She Does is Magic

My friend, Tasha, decided to surprise me and send me a gift last week. No swap, just a gift (because she's stubborn like that).

I figured she was just sending me a bag -- because I'm a moron and couldn't follow her tutorial. Um.... I was wrong....

Not only did she send me an awesome bag (and I now refuse to carry anything else), she also sent me some materials to play with and some bugs for the boys.

It amazes me all the new friendships I have developed over the web. And everyone's generosity is incredibly amazing.

You Had to be a Big Shot, Didn't Ya?

Okay, I'm posting this a little late. But Angela didn't receive her package until Saturday and I had a big sewing project fiasco this weekend whichwewillnotdiscuss.

So, sorry its delayed...

But here are the contents of my "slacker swap."

She sent me a milk-glass vase, awesome cup and saucer (perfect for tea), a little frame, a beautiful sheet, four cards she made, sea glass, animal beads, ribbon-y thread, two punches, umbrellas (for my summer alcohol drinks, I'm sure) and some scrapbook paper. She was way to generous.

And here's a close up of the cards she made...

If I could draw like that you wouldn't be able to get the pencil out of my hands.

To see what I sent her, click here.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Soy un Perdedor. I'm a Loser Baby, So Why Don't You Kill Me? (Get Crazy with the Cheese Whiz!)

As if you didn't already know, I AM A FUCKING MORON.

Yes, I sewed through my pin head.
Seriously, if there was a Nobel Prize for Stupidity, I would be so in.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

What Do You Want? What Do You Want? I Want Rock'n'Roll. You Betcha! Long Live Rock'n'Roll!

Dear Internet,

I do not like you so much right now. No, not you the friends on the other side of the monitor. But the actual internet: you are not so nice.

First of all, I'm gonna do a lot of complaining, so I'm gonna put off thanking my wonderful friends that sent me items this week. Your generosity should not be tarnished by my bitch-fest.

Friday, Aaron took the day off of work. I had to get some blood work drawn (no biggie, a yearly routine) in the morning and I wanted to go to the Creating Keepsakes convention in town. Aaron ended up working a 14-hour shift Thursday, so he decided to stay home all day.

So, after the blood draw I drove up to the convention.

First, I was squeezed into a waiting line like a fucking sardine. People were literally pushing me. And all I could think was, this ain't no goddamn New Kids on the Block concert people, back off!

Then, a fairly well-known scrapbook artist cut through the line in front of me with her friend, and said something along the lines of, "Jesusfuckingchrist, this place is full of smelly, old hags! I do not want to be teaching these kind of people my techniques!"

I really have no witty comment to say to that. I'm too disgusted.

So then, I finally got into the convention (due to never knowing Aaron's traveling schedule, I did not sign-up for classes before time and by then I didn't want to take any classes). I really expected to see some scrapbook products I've never seen before, or at least some products that I've seen in magazines but not at my local scrapbook stores.

Nope. Not really. I've seen it all.

Okay, there were a few exceptions...

I got this mini-album and Sweet Water cardstock at The Scrappin' Place booth (they are located outside Springfield, Missouri). They actually make the albums. I thought this would be really cute to decorate with this paper and make it an album for all my craft projects this year.

I also got this paper at the same booth, made by Crate Paper (a new company - five weeks old).

From other booths, I also got some decorative ribbons, "Creamy Brown" chalk pad, Maya Road ribbon charms and plain cotton twill ribbon (to hopefully make tags for bags with).

But overall, I was really disappointed in the convention. The only things I haven't seen before, I purchased. And that's just plain sad.

When I got home from the convention, Aaron and I spent SIX HOURS researching washers and dryers (and those six hours? Only half of one of those were spent by me).

Anyway, we made our choice and left that evening to make our purchase.

Obviously, this is The Most Exciting Event to Ever Happen to My Children.

Saturday my cousin Sarah told me what grade she got on her paper I edited. A-. Her teacher put commas before the "and"s. I told Sarah I was going to show up at her school and throw it down with her teacher. I have a goddamn Journalism degree!

Then, I had this cockamainey idea to make a bag for my MIL for her birthday. I knew I would need to make two practice bags and use Angela's and Tasha's tutorials.

It took me two hours to get to the "boxing out" part. Three more hours (and lots of seam ripping) to figure it out.

Then another hour to flip it right side out and make it pretty.

Then two more hours (and too much damn seam ripping) to get it right. Then three more hours because I fucked up again. And then 15 minutes of sewing, and what do I have?

Obviously, a few more fucking hours (and seam ripping) to do. I have a college degree, goddamnit. I should be able to figure out how to make a fucking bag.

Now, excuse me while I go eat a pint of ice cream.

Friday, March 24, 2006

She Was Gonna Shake Her Ass on the Hood of White Snake's Car

Instead, she's writing a tutorial on how to make a baby blanket. And on a Friday night nonetheless. Damn, what has become of me?

Anyway, baby blanket! Yes, let's make a baby blanket! Welcome to Sewing 101: How to Stitch a Straight Line.

First, got buy your fabric (for a baby blanket, one yard of each fabric is plenty). I recommend 100% cotton, unless you are using a Minky on one side. Typically, I use Minky Dot for one side of the baby blanket. In this example, I used Minky Marshmellow (this is my first time using it, and it was a lot easier to work with than the Minky Dot. Both have their troubles and slips; if you've never made a blanket before, I would suggest you try a flannel for one side before trying to work with Minky. Minky is likely to make you want to curse, cry or consume alcohol. If you are anything like me, it will make you do all three). Also purchase 100% cotton thread for your machine (and yes, wind a bobbin with the same thread).

Wash and dry all your material. Iron your 100% cotton materials. (In the past, I have always prewashed my Minky. In this sample, I did not. Minky will not shrink, but the Minky Dot curls over itself on the raw edges when dried, and it makes it difficult to pin in place and sew a perfect straight line. I put the Minky Marshmellow in the dryer on air fluff for half an hour to get all the shedding off, it worked wonderfully).

First, lay down your thicker fabric face up (I used the laundry room floor)...

Next, lay your top fabric on top, face down...

Roughly trim. Next, pin the fabric in place around the perimeter...

Gingerly pick up your fabric, and on the center of one side begin to sew...

Sew around the fabric; on the corners, leave the needle in, lift the machine's foot and rotate the fabric 90 degrees. Put the foot back down and continue to sew. Sew all around, leaving an opening of 15 - 18 inches on the side where you began.

Next, turn blanket inside out, push out the corners and check stitching...

Once you see how your blanket will look, turn it back right side in and trim excess materials...

Cut the corners at a 45 degree angle to cut down on the bulk...

Put in the dryer on air fluff and let it run for about half an hour (this does two things: it gets all the stray pieces of fluffies and thread off and it also gives you the confidence in your stitching; if any stitching comes loose, you can resew the blanket).

Remove from the dryer. Turn fabric back to right side out.

Pin the opening closed. Stitch at the beginning of the opening and continue stitching all around blanket for a "finished edge"...

Voila! Your blanket it complete! Wash and dry again before use or gift giving.

If you're a nerd like me, you can make a little information card for the blanket. I just typed what I wanted on one page, trimmed it down, cut a piece of cardstock slightly larger and glued information on each side (one side is who it is for, who it is from, who made it and the date; the other side is all the material information and care instructions).

This has been brought to you by the letter W, T and F. And by the Quick Crafts for Sanity Group, because keeping mommies off of Valium is our utmost importance.

Our next class will be Sewing 102: How to Make a Damn Easy Pillowcase.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Overheard at My House

While I was changing Darwin's diaper...

"Yes, Darwin, I know you love your penis. But I need to put your diaper on now."

"Yeah, Mommy doesn't like penis, Darwin."

"Uh, Griffin? I don't have a penis."

"You don't? Did yours break off?"

"No, I wasn't born with a penis. I have a vagina."

"You have a dagina?"

"Yes, I have a vagina. Boys have a penis, girls have a vagina. And I'm a girl."

"Oh..." ::thinking:: ::Comes over to me and UNBUTTONS MY PANTS::

"Um, Griffin? Whatcha doin'?"

"I wanna see your dagina."

"No, that's not appropriate."

"But you've seen my penis. I wanna see your dagina. Please? Please, please?"

"No. You know how no one is allowed to look or touch you where you wear your underpants? You're not allowed to look or touch anyone else where they wear their underpants."

"So I can't see your dagina?"


"Otay. I'll wait and see Ella's."


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Copywritten, So Don't Copy Me

What is going on over at Den gode feen's hobbyside brings up a great topic about copying others crafts.

As a crafter, I get TONS of inspiration I see on flickr and other people's blogs. There are so many great ideas, crafts I love but never would have thought about myself.

However, I think there is a difference between inspiration and copying.

Inspire: to influence, move, or guide
Copy: to reproduce an original work; something to be imitated

Many might think there is a fine line. Personally, I would never intentionally copy someones work, nor would I want mine copied (unless I specifically wrote a tutorial). But, if I inspire you to do something similar, and add your own take on it, by all means -- create.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


I have to make my own Easter basket.

That kinda sucks.

Anyone interested in doing an Easter basket swap?

I have no clue what the "rules" would be, but its gotta beat making your own Easter basket. Where's the fun in that?

Well I Gosh Darn Gone and Done It

Last night, I mailed out Colorfool's swap package (okay, that's a lie. I made Aaron mail it for me).

Here's a little glimpse at what she's getting...

Obviously, she doesn't realize I took the "slacker" theme Very Seriously.

(I joke! I joke! Gawd.)

Okay, here's the real teaser...


And here is photographic evidence that Mother Nature can really act like a Mean Old Hag with a Horrible Sense of Humor...

My backyard.

The tulip tree.

My lilac bush.

And the tulips. Not my tulips! Aaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhhhh!!!!!!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Starting to Collect Requested Data, "What Will It Affect When All Is Done..." Thinks Major Tom

First of all, I think my martini post Friday night broke Blogger. Everytime I tried to log on this weekend, Blogger claimed they were having a "server" problem. How you all managed to leave me so many comments is beyond me.

As usual, we had a crazy weekend. After Griffin went to gymnastics Saturday, Kathy (my step-mom) and I (stupidly) took the boys to a fabric store. We needed to get some fabric for me to make a baby blanket for her nephew's new son. I would post a picture, but Blogger is broken again. I also got some fabric to make new pillowcases for the living room (and when I do, I'll make a tutorial and post it here and on flicker to make colorfool happy).

Aaron finally got home late Saturday night, which meant we had one day to catch-up on a week's worth of shit to get done -- mainly taxes and purchasing a washer and dryer. At least we got our taxes done.

We went to two stores. First we went to Home Depot, just to see what they had (and to get some household stuff, including a new cutting board!). Then we went across the street to Sears with the most sincere idea to purchase, but purchase we did not.

Really, we're not asking much. Just a stainless steal drum with bleach and softener dispensers. Really, that's all. (I'd love to have a front loader, or a top loader without an agitator, but seriously? Can. Not. Afford. It. And that's okay.) But Sears only had two models and we were not happy.

So we decided that I would go out into the world, armed with my trusty digital camera (nerd - I know). First I went out to Lowe's, and they had a pretty good selection of what we wanted. Then I needed to go up north (close to the airport) because I needed to get something clearanced at a scrapbook store before they closed, and I decided to go to the Best Buy up there.

And that was about the smartest thing I did all weekend.

Their selection of washers and dryers sucked hairy monkey balls, but I got to look at laptops and software for the cookbook. And in doing so I met a kid with Celiac Disease. Total kismet.

I also go to go to Border's for a few minutes (literally, a few minutes) and looked at cookbooks. They did not have one single cookbook for Celiac Disease or food allergies on their shelf. I did manage to pickup a great Mediterranean cookbook, because I love the layout, materials and price ($10) -- all factors I'm keeping in mind for my cookbook.

Oy. We have two BIG purchases to potentially make this week. And I'm overwhelmed.

Friday, March 17, 2006

It's the Same Ol', Same Ol' Situation

Yes, Aaron should be home now, but he's not. 'Tis the life of a "Travel Widow."

What am I doing to cope with such a predicament, you ask?

Well, when life gives you lemons...

... make a Lemon Drop Martini.

All you need are sugar, water, lemon(s), and citrus flavored vodka.

(Before I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease, we used the Smirnoff citrus vodka, but it's made from wheat. Hanger One is the only brand -- that I've found, and I've asked around for help -- of flavored vodka NOT made from wheat; it is made from grapes. In any case, Hanger One is much smoother.)

First, make a simple syrup.

In a small saucepan, poor an equal amount of water and sugar.

I eyeball it.

Next, put the flame on "medium" and heat it until the sugar dissolves and the liquid becomes clear (but not boiling).

Not yet!

Yes, there.

Next, roll your lemon(s) to breakup the pulp and make it easier to juice.

Betcha didn't know I have chubby hands, did ya?

Next, cut the lemon in half.

(Yes, this is a tutorial for dumbasses. Written by someone who is obviously past tipsy.)

Next, squeeze the lemon over a bowl.

I like to use a pasta bowl because...

... the next step is to dip your glass in the lemon juice. Then...

... dip it in sugar. That's how you make a sugar rim (I'm totally slurring my words now).


Maybe we should call it a rim job. Oh, that was naughty-naughty. Inappropriate!

Next, put some ice in your martini shaker.

(Note: when you are making a martini that uses vermouth, you want to stir it. Shaking a vermouth-vodka martini makes yucky air bubbles in the drink and it's not smooth. Always make the vermouth-vodka martinis in the glasses they will be served in.)

Next, pour in some booze. I pour in about half.

Next, add some of that fabulous simple syrup you made earlier (make sure it has cooled a little).

Next, some lemon juice.

(I really no longer measure these out -- do a little, taste and add what you need; typically, its about three parts vodka, two parts simple syrup, one part lemon juice).

Now, put the lid on and shake!shake!shake! Shake!shake!shake! Shake your booty! Shake your booty!

And pour.

Voila! Now you all can be as snockered as I am!

If You're Friends With P, Then You're Friends With Me; If You're Down With P, Then You're Down With Me

Maybe blogger (you fuckers!) being down today was a good thing. It forced me to do a much-needed update.

Scroll down, go ahead, look on the right.

You see ALL those blogs?

Yeah, I read those. All of 'em.

I just have to say, if it wasn't for reading other people's blogs, and blogging myself, my mind would be so overstuffed with thoughts that I could not function.

Seriously, I'd spend all day on my ass on the couch contemplating the aspects of my children's ear wax.

Instead, I only do that for about ten minutes a day.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Everybody Get Random

What happens on the fourth day Aaron is out of town?



How's my washer, you ask?

'Bout broken, that's how. I am now up to at least five (as in 5! 5! 5!) rinses per cycle, and? The clothes are still not adequately rinsed.

When Aaron gets back in town we are suppose to go purchase a new set. Yeah. We'll see how long that process takes.


This is for Tasha...

I plan on making two of her bags. But I'm incompetent and asking lots of questions. The outer materials are the bottom, the linings above. Love the obnoxiously bright flowers!


Is anyone noticing that nearly all of my titles are music lyrics?

For instance, "Everybody Get Random" is from Lady Sovereign's "Random" off her album Vertically Challenged.

Do I need to start doing a week in review and giving all this information out so y'all don't think I'm completely off my rocker? Or will that not help? Does this conversation topic make me seem even more crazy?

In any case, go watch her video. Or, at least, play it and listen while you're surfin' around.


Thrifty Thursday finds...

A men's hawaiian shirt (I have two projects in mind for it - one, of course, is another bag) and a Richard Scary book. Is it bad of me to keep looking at it and thinking it says "Miss Horney's Busy Day"?


I love Morningwood.

Get your mind out of the gutter. Not that morning wood, this Morningwood.

They are coming to Lawrence April 26th (at the Granada. Urgh). Anyone wanna go? They are the openers, so we can drag our lazy mommy asses home at a semi-reasonable hour.

Actually, the first morning wood isn't all that bad either.


Will you quit looking at me like that? Gah. I told you my mind is demented today.