Monday, October 18, 2010

Couldn't be lovlier...

Today has been just a lovely, good day. And it isn't over yet. I still have 45 minutes until Dancing with the Stars comes on and I can watch some fun ballroom dancing and possibly a shirtless dancer or two! But today has been spent getting ready for my trip to Florida in a couple of days and I always love to pack. I love to get everything organized and arrange it in my suitcases. I know that might seem wierd, but I love making everything fit. I loved Tetris as a teenager, so I think it might just be an oddball thing of mine. But my suitcases are getting full and this makes my husband sad. He has said on more than one evening that he really wants me to stay 'cause he is gonna miss me too much. Aaawww. I've also been finishing up a crafting project. I had this idea for months and I finally had the time and products to work on it. It is my contribution to the October Swarm I'll be going to in Florida. We are all handmaking a little goody for each other and I had an idea in my mind to do, but couldn't find the exact thing I needed, so I had to improvise. I REALLY love it when the improvation turns out better than the original. I took photos, but I cannot post them yet, 'cause I want this to be a surprise and someone could read this that will be getting these lovlies! Maybe later. But the most lovely thing that happened today was when Charlie came home and asked if there was anything he could do to help me get ready. I said, "Sure. You can make supper tonight." Knowing full well that he has NEVER made supper for us. That he HATES to cook and flat out refuses to do it. And that the last time I talked him into it we ate macaroni and chesse that tasted like cheese and paste. So I quit asking. But tonight he took pity on me and said, "OK, what'da want?" I knew that there was a package of this new meat-free "beef" tips in the freezer and that they should be easy to fix, so I picked that with some veggies. Knowing that he could nuke 'em and the food would be edible. So about 1/2 hour later my husband comes down to the basement with a plate of food he is delivering to my craft desk. It looked GREAT! The tips were char-grilled and I asked him how he cooked them? "In the skillet." He said. He must have noticed the shock on my face so he continued, "And I didn't just cook 'em up, I added seasonings!" I took a bite and was confused. It was not only edible, but damn GOOD! I said, "What kind of seasonings did you use?" He said, "You are shocked, aren't you? I'm shocked too. I just thought that I have all these spices at my fingertips and I should use some. So I added blackening spice, soy sauce and seasoned salt." Holy crap. These all go together well and he figured it out on his own. Then he said something that almost brought a tear to my eye. "I also used olive oil AND butter in the pan." That is exactly what I do...I consider it one of my "secrets"...and he must have been paying attention. Well, I set to on that plate. He came back down a few minutes later with my camera and said, "Don't you wanna take a photo?" I was so distracted by the yumminess that I totally forgot that I take photos of monumental occasions and this one was about to pass me by. So here is my supper plate. Half gone.

Now I just don't know if I should ask him to cook supper again on another night or just hold the memory of this evening dear....

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Another great find.

I love finding fun and unique stores and this little shop on Market Street in Corning is just that. I found this store when I first moved up here and always make sure to take visiting folks there.
Corning Stitch Works is a collection of all the stuff that I love-vintage fabrics (mixed in with some really cool, new stuff!), vintage bric-a-brac, vintage furnishings and lamps, vintage ribbons and trim and (my favorite) vintage findings. LOTS of vintage stuff! This store is stocked from the floor to the rafters with amazing stuff. The owner (lady who is usually there) is so nice and helpful and is always working on an interesting project. I love to just poke around in there and see what I can find. I usually leave there wishing that I could sew. But using this stuff in crafting projects will have to do.
Recently I was on the hunt for some cool Halloween stuff to put in a goody bag for my Swarm Sisters in Florida, so that was my first stop! I had to take some photos to share. This last photo is my favorite! This is a skirt made from a pattern called "The Study Hall Skirt" (the one on top in the fall colors). The lady there said she made it using 1970's curtain panels and some vintage brown material as trim and inserts. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this skirt!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

PS to the last blog post

This post is my version of a wifely chuckle!

On Monday evening I was taking the dogs out after dark. I am not the one who normally takes them out after dark, but Charles was busy, so what the hey. I turned on the front and back porch lights because if I'm going out in the dark the more lights I can turn on the merrier! So while I am out there waiting on the dogs, the lights go off! What the hey?! I rush in and have a few words with my darling husband about safety and lights and night time critters and wanting to see them just before they attack me, etc. He counters that he was just trying to save on electric. (Now is the part of the story that I'll tell you that inside the house the following lights were on: kitchen, living room, hallway #1, bathroom, bedroom #1, hallway #2 and master bedroom-where was Mr. Frugal IN the house?) Anyway...I stuck with my guns about safety and keeping outside lights on when we are outside.
Now we arrive to last night. BIG...GIANT thunderstorm brewing in the mountains. Very creepy-like setting. I put two baskets of recycling on the front porch to remind us to take it to Bloss this weekend. Charles wants to move it to the garage. OK, have at it. He sets off to move the baskets to the garage in the dark.

Now, my dear readers, remember what is in 3-4 mounds in the back yard? "Bird seed!" That's right? And remember what bird seed is called when it is not winter? "Bear food!" That is also right! And one more question. Remember what my rule is about outside lights on? "It helps to let you see the animal who is about to attack you!" Now back to Charles and that recycling!

He is in between the house and the garage when he hears snorting, huffing and lip smacking from a bear who is at or near the treeline. But he can't see 'cause he didn't turn the back porch lights on! His first thought is not to take a few steps to safety, no. He calls me on the phone! He is literally just a few steps from the house. All he would have to do is holler into an open window to get my attention. But he calls me. For what? To possibly ask me to turn on the back porch light to scare away the bear? To take photos as he wrestles a bear in the yard? I simply am dumbfounded!

Now I would like to add to the last post that HUSBANDS DO THE DARNEDEST THINGS!!!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Charles' Magnificent Obsession.

My husband is funny to me. Kids say the darnedest things?! Ha! I believe that Husbands say the darnedest things! Here's the story...

We were big fans of the HBO show, The Sopranos. If you were too, and watched from the beginning, you will understand the reference: "Wild birds are to Charles as ducks were to Tony." If you do not understand that, then suffice it to say that Charles is obsessed with the wild birds in our area.
When we first moved into this house, all he wanted to do was feed them. Since we moved in here in the summer, he had to wait until the late fall and winter to feed them. You see, we are not supposed to put out bird seed until the bears are hibernating. This is considered "feeding" bears and will help to turn a wild bear into a nuisance bear. So he waited until it was "all clear" and he could feed the birds. Last year he put out more bags of seed than I could count. He would sit at the windows and watch birds. He would pick up binoculars and watch them up close. He put out feeders for the smaller birds. He talked about the birds and their feeding habits. Oh, yeah. He was really into those birds. Now when spring came he was sad that he couldn't "take care" of them anymore. I have overheard him on more than one occasion talking to birds telling them he was "sorry, but to come back in the winter." Remember that word I used? Obsessed? OK...
All spring he's been waiting. All summer he's been waiting. Now it's fall and he is still waiting. BUT the other day a bag of birdseed appeared in the hall closet. He, it appears, is done waiting.
On Saturday we got a weather alert from the Weather Channel saying that we were getting our first frost warning of the season. Temperatures were going into the low 30's and so that afternoon we started to "winterize" our porches. Bringing in perennial plants, covering others. Then Charles went to the hall closet and brought out his big bag of seed. I could almost hear his inner monologue..."temperatures at freezing, frost on the ground, frost is like snow, snow equals winter, winter is here! I can feed the birds again!!" Off he went.
Charles has given up on the bird feeders. The bears have knocked down and/or destroyed each of the ones he has put up, so instead of feeders Charles will just make 3-4 giant mounds of seed near the tree line. Kind-of like the buffet line for birds. He is a happy man. His birds will be back shortly. We wake up Sunday morning, just a few short hours from when he put out the birdseed, and while getting ready to go to fellowship, we notice a ton of blue jays, some crows, a few random brown birds, a rabbit, a hand full of squirrels and eight turkeys all feeding from the mounds. As I was standing there taking photos of the turkeys, who were the last to arrive, my crazy, funny husband says..., "I just wish that more of a variety of critters showed up."
Again I say, Husbands say the darnedest things!
(Charles, last winter. Notice the spots in the yard where he removed the snow to put down the seed?)