Friday, February 27, 2009


I rented the movie Amadeus (starting Tom Hulce) since I'd only seen it once a LONG time ago and I wanted to watch it again. Little did I know that they can now make a 2-sided disc. So I pop the disc in the DVD player and it starts out where Mozart is writing "The Magic Flute" and getting sick. And I keep looking at scene selection 'cos this doesn't look right - it looks like the middle of the movie.

Then I get the bright idea to try turning it over. And yes, side 1 (with the beginning of the movie) was the other side. Live and learn... it keeps life interesting !!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Blue Points

I'm really excited about Blue Cross Blue Shield's Blue Points program to encourage healthy lifestyle changes. We've been BCBS members for over a year, but I didn't know about the Blue Points program until recently. You get points for different activities in the Personal Health manager portal, then you can redeem them for prizes at tiered levels.

I love tracking foods, etc online (which is why I've been a SparkPeople member for over 5 years), so this looks like fun. My goal is to earn enough points for a Wii Fit which will take almost a year, but that's the point, right?

I'm not affiliated with Blue Cross Blue Shield in any way

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Yoga for Beginners

This was a birthday present from a few days ago since I'd been wanting to try yoga for the gentle stretching. This DVD is split into 5 10-minute yoga sessions, so I thought that would be nice to help me ease into it since I'm a complete beginner.

I tried 2 of the segments yesterday and I was very pleased. The movements provided great stretches which I really needed. Plus I could follow along without being overwhelmed.

This will be a great afternoon pick-me-up 'cos usually that's my really sleepy time. A couple of 10 minute sessions, and I'll be wide awake !!

I'm not affiliated in any way with 10 Minute Solution or anyone who sells it

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Command Strips

Regarding those window garlands I was talking about yesterday (and I did make another one during the Louisville game last night), I use Command Strips to hang them instead of hammering nails in the wall. I'm a HUGE Commands Strips fan and I have them in all sizes. They're easy to stick on and remove and leave no marks on the surface.

At Christmas time, I have decorations all over my house, and then afterwards, I just remove the Command Strips and save them again for next year. You do have to buy new strips to continue reusing the hooks, but I buy variety packs online.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Command Strips or 3M

Monday, February 23, 2009

Window Garlands

I finally finished 2 of the window garlands I'd started earlier. I needed some color over the windows and thought this might be a decorative way to add it. The fabric strips are about 5-6 inches long and tied around a 6 foot piece of jute. I didn't count the number of pieces needed per jute string, though.

I still have several more to make, and I've found this is a distracting activity for me while watching Louisville basketball games. If I don't have something to do while they play, I usually get WAY too anxious !! At this rate, I may have garlands over every window in the house (until the NCAA tournament is over).

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mr. Linky

I'm finally going to plunge in and create a Mr. Linky list for EC droppers on this site I've seen them on other blogs and think it's a cool idea. Plus, I'm just really curious and want to see if it works !! I like to fiddle around with javascript codes and Google gadgets, so this will be fun to try. Here we go.....

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I mentioned in another post that I enjoy Tarot cards, so this site is alot of fun. You can get free tarot, horoscopes, astrology, and numerology readings. You can also earn Karma Coins which can be redeemed for other activities on the site. Membership is free, but there is a fee for some of the readings and reports.

I'm not in any way affiliated with

Friday, February 20, 2009

My Birthday

YAY - today's my birthday !! I get to have a nice lunch with my husband. Then we're probably having seafood for dinner followed by carrot cake (I love the cream cheese frosting).

It's fun to wake up to bunches of Happy Birthday emails from my family and from My Coke Rewards, Borders, Disney Movie Rewards, and others.

For fun, I also posted some pictures of me through the years on my Facebook page (I'm VERY new to Facebook and trying to figure it out).

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Going Decaf

I've been trying very diligently to cut out caffeine, and it's not as easy as I thought it would be. First of all, very few food places have any type of caffeine-free drink. Wendy's, Taco Bell, and Subway do offer caffeine-free colas. I love carbonated beverages (when I'm really thisty, that fizz just makes me feel hydrated) but I will bring my own sugar-free drink packets and add it to water.

Decaf coffee is much easier to do, and I typically haven't been a coffee drinker, but I'm enjoying it more this winter. Plus it's filling and makes me feel like I'm having a sweet dessert.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

2nd Rag Crochet Vase

I finally finished the 2nd rag crochet vase. It's a slightly different shape than the first one, but the fabric strips that I used are going to affect the shape and size somewhat so I had to adjust for that.

Here's the quick abbreviated pattern:
1. Ch 2 then 6 sc in the first chain to make a ring
2. 12 sc
3. 18 sc
4. 24 sc
5. 24 sc to start forming sides
6. 30 sc
7. 30 sc
8. 36 sc
9. 36 sc
10. 42 sc
11. 39 sc
12. 36 sc
13. 33 sc
14. 30 sc
15. 27 sc
16. 24 sc
17. 24 sc BLO to make the neck
18. 24 sc BLO
19. 24 (sc - single stitch) to make the fluted edge
Tie off the ends

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent

I had wanted to read this book after visiting Salem, MA last summer. I'd expected Salem to feel creepy, but it felt very sad and apologetic. Even as a small kid, I've always been fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.

We read Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" in high school, and this book also follows one of the accused and hanged, Martha Carrier. It's written by an ancestor of Martha's who painstakingly researched her life. I enjoyed the book, especially the insights into life during that period.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Your 2 Cents

YAY - I got a very nice check from Your 2 Cents survey panel. I love taking online surveys and have been a member of this one for about a year. It's easy to sign up (no invitation needed) but you don't get points or credits for referring others.

I'll post other survey sites as well that (to my knowledge) are reputable and fun.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Your 2 Cents, just a happy member of the survey panel

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A Darker Domain by Val McDermid

I'm a big fan of Val McDermid's mystery novels so I was glad to read her newest one. This is a stand-alone story set in current-day Scotland but deals with the miners' strike and a botched kidnapping plot from 20 years ago.

I really enjoyed the characters DI Karen Pirie and DS Phil Parharta and I hope Ms. McDermid writes another story which features them.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone !! It's Saturday (which is always nice since I get to sleep later than normal). And I get to have a fun, romantic tennis date with my husband this evening. We've signed up for a Valentine's Day "tournament" where we play tennis with other couples and laugh and giggle.

I still get so thrilled that I'm able to play - considering what it was like 20 years ago when my husband tried to teach me. I'd maybe hit the ball, then get excited 'cos I hit it, and stop in the middle of the court and laugh. I was pretty hopeless, so being able to play now is an absolute joy for me.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th

Another Friday the 13th, huh ? Today it will be lucky for me since I get to buy a new (drumroll, please) dishwasher !! Our current dishwasher hasn't been cleaning well, and it's been several years, so it's time for a new one. All the major home stores have appliances on sale for President's Day, so I've been comparing prices and calculating how to get the best deal. Now if I only had a coupon....!!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Open Office

Open Office free office suite has been such a tremendous help to me this week. I'm working on a website for the volunteer action center in our area and they asked me to upload and link to a manual. The manual was in Word Perfect format (which I don't have), but Open Office opened it with no problem. Of all the tools offered, I use the Base (database), Calc (spreadsheet), and Writer (word processor) the most.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Open Office, Sun, or Java.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Mr. Mom

My kids watched the 80's film "Mr. Mom" last night and I think everyone enjoyed it. I told them that's how their "woobies" got their name. When they were born, each was given a "woobie" and "little woobie" made by their aunt. My son carried his little woobie with him everywhere when he was a toddler.

Now both kids have their woobies safely retired in their tote bins where I store all their childhood treasures, some homework papers, artwork, honor roll certificates, yearbooks, etc. Actually each child has about 4 bins by now. When they're 40, they'll thank me (isn't that what all moms say ?)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Last April I joined the Homescan Consumer Panel and I'll be celebrating my 1 year anniversary soon. This is an AC Nielsen company where you're issued a bar code scanner and you manually scan all the purchases that you make.

You get points for submitting scans weekly and for answering surveys, then you can redeem the points for prizes. Plus there are prize giveaways and I'm planning how I'm going to spend the $20,000 that I will win this year (this the power of positive thinking, right ?) !!

My daughter likes to help me scan but my husband tolerates it. From what I hear, that's pretty typical. I think it's fun, but I like gadgets.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Homescan or AC Nielsen

Monday, February 9, 2009

Your Fonts Online Font Generator
Thanks to Pinoy Web Surfer for posting this amazing free font generator. This is the coolest, easiest, funnest computer gadget-y thing. I use Open Office, and it was unbelievably cool to type and see my handwriting on the screen.

I don't know if it translates to email, such as if I send someone an email using my font and they don't have my font on their computer, I assume it will default. But I will try it out and report back.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Window Garlands (In Progress)

I'm not a "crafty" creative person, but it seems like I have alot of fabric decorating projects in the works right now. This pile of fabric strips (each about 5 inches long) is going to make garlands to hang over my windows. I had Christmas garlands up at the holidays and I liked the look of something over the windows, so my husband suggested that I make some to replace them.

I'm going to tie them onto 6 feet jute strings and hang them over my sliding glass doors, my front door, and grandfather clock. I'll post a picture when they're finished.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Photo Editing

Picnik: photo editing is the coolest site for photo editing. Granted, I'm not a major editing whiz and usually all I want to do is resize and crop my images. But this is free, online, interfaces with Picasa (which is the photo software used by Blogger), and VERY easy to use.

I am in no way affiliated with

Friday, February 6, 2009

2nd Rag Crochet Vase (In Progress)

I'm trying to make another rag crochet vase to match the one I made earlier, but I had a problem with the second one being too big. So now I'm going to tear out about 4 or 5 rows and have to redo them. Do you think I will earn a lesson from this and write my stitches down? And by writing them down, that would make a crochet pattern. And I could actually post it on Ravelry since it would be a crochet pattern that I haven't seen anywhere else. YAY !! I'll post a picture when I get this one finished.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I just started crocheting this summer and one of the first things any beginner needs is patterns. Finding the Ravelry community for knitters and crocheters has been wonderful.

Ravelry describes itself as "a place for knitters, crocheters, designers, spinners, and dyers to keep track of their yarn, tools, and pattern information, and look to others for ideas and inspiration. The content here is all user- driven; we as a community make the site what it is."

While it's still in kinda-beta, you request an invitation on the site and then your account information is emailed in 3 or 4 days. It's completely free to join.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Ravelry, just a happy member of the community.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Pineapples and Licorice

I'm on blood thinners from a blood clot almost 10 years ago, and I didn't know that so many foods, other drugs, and herbs can interact with the blood thinner. After Halloween, I was eating some Good and Plenty candy (the really licorice ones) and then my ProTime number tested really high. I found out from that licorice can act as a blood thinner itself.

Now I wanted to take a bromelain supplement (from pineapples) to help with my joint swelling (probably from playing tennis) and found out that the ingredients can also act as blood thinners. Bummer....

I am in no way affiliated with

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Family on Facebook

I got a pleasant surprise today when I got a friend invitation from my mom to join her on Facebook !! I was thrilled and amazed. I'd just joined Facebook a few weeks ago and had already connected with some high school friends. So when I found my mom had joined, too, I thought this was fantastic. Then it turns out that my dad had created an account at the same time. This will be such a fun and easy way to keep in touch with them since they live 5 hours away from me.

Monday, February 2, 2009

My Tarot Card

I love tarot so I thought this looked like fun. Thanks to Color Addiction and Dogmaw Glass for posting this free tarot tool. Here's the card chosen for me based on my answers:
You are the World - Completion, Good Reward.
The World is the final card of the Major Arcana, and as such represents saturnian energies, time, and completion.
The World card pictures a dancer in a Yoni (sometimes made of laurel leaves). The Yoni symbolizes the great Mother, the cervix through which everything is born, and also the doorway to the next life after death. It is indicative of a complete circle. Everything is finally coming together, successfully and at last. You will get that Ph.D. you've been working for years to complete, graduate at long last, marry after a long engagement, or finish that huge project. This card is not for little ends, but for big ones, important ones, ones that come with well earned cheers and acknowledgements. Your hard work, knowledge, wisdom, patience, etc, will absolutely pay-off; you've done everything right.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.
I am in no way affiliated with
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