Sunday, October 30, 2011


I thought I might try to scare you.

Here's our Jack-O-Lantern. I carved it out yesterday. I'm soaking the seeds in saltwater. I'll roast them later this evening. Yum!

Happy Halloween! I hope you have lots of treats and not many tricks.

Halloween 2011

Jenny and John had their annual Halloween party. Bill and I dressed up as... (I know the suspense has been killing you and on top of the fact that I came up with this idea years ago)

Jessie and Woody!!

Here's the front and back of my costume

And here's Bill (at this point, sans wig - notice he shaved!)

Unfortunately I did not take a picture of the bottom of Bill's boot (which I thought I did), it had "Andy" on it, just like Woody.

We had a great time at the party! The usual suspects were there and as always the food and drink were delicious. We are looking forward to next year!!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Saturday randomness

Maybe I use the random part too often, but sometimes there's just more in my head than I want to wait to write about. Mostly because it's relevant to recent events.

For instance, this morning I turned on the tv to find out who won the World Series (no, I did not stay up to watch, I wimped out at the end of the 5th inning). Were they talking about it on the news? Nope. I pulled out my laptop, surely it will be the first thing at the top of the headlines. Nope. Would you like to know what was? Herman Cain and his "big lead" in the south.

What? Seriously. What does a girl have to do to find out who won the World Series???

Scroll down until I found better news than Yahoo! apparently. There it was. The first news story from Today. That's more like it.

The other randomness is on driving. I'm in Detroit for the annual Halloween party (pictures will be posted tomorrow).

Bill and I often muse over the different driving styles in the different places we've lived.

Often, as I drive into Detroit, I laugh to myself at the traffic. In Jersey, you tried to go 70 on the Turnpike, but often couldn't because it was at a crawl. In Detroit (at least today), you have to go 80 so you don't get run over (don't worry Mom, I learned my story-telling skills from Bill, I was only going 75).

Traffic moves, cars change lanes at high rates of speed and it takes skill to drive here. As our friend Heather O. once said on our drive over to Detroit, "Whoa. I'm glad you're driving."

I learned from the best and living in Jersey for 3 1/2 years didn't hurt.

Friday, October 28, 2011

the sky is falling, literally

This morning, while I stood in the kitchen enjoying my coffee, I was looking out the back door.

I watched leaf after leaf fall from the Red Bud tree in our backyard.

Literally, it is fall. I was watching it happen right before my eyes.

Soon, there was quite a pile of leaves as they slowly swirled and spun to the ground. Letting go of their summer grip, each leaf relenting to the cold of the season.

Bill sent me the local weatherman's (his name is Bill too) forecast for the 2011-2012 winter. While Bill's email said, "kill me now" my reaction was a big smile and thoughts of beautiful snowflakes.

We are definitely a yin/yang when it comes to weather. I know I'm in the minority and I'll say it until it's no longer true, but I love winter.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

worlds apart

I just finished reading "Valley of the Dolls". A book I've been wanting to read since I saw it on the shelf at my in-laws house several years ago. Okay, so it took me awhile, first to remember that I wanted to read it and then to actually get it at the library. That too took some time, I put it on hold and had to wait for it to show up at my local library branch.

Side note: I love how technology helped the library system. It's so easy to log in, find the book I want to read, put it on hold and wait for the email. Sure, I could go stand in the library and become completely overwhelmed by the selection or frustrated because I can't find what I'm looking for. Instead, I can browse from home in the comfort of my pj's.

While I was reading "Valley of the Dolls" I had "The Help" on hold. That one took longer to become available what with its recent popularity.

What I find interesting is my choice (or maybe coincidence) to read these two books back to back. They take place during the same time frame. Granted most of "Valley of the Dolls" is the 1940's, but it ends in the 1960's which is where "The Help" starts. I've only just started "The Help" and the two are so completely different. It is shocking to me.

I hope that's a sign of the times.

I know. They're both works of fiction.

But some of it has to be based of facts and research.

So to have one book about the city life and the struggles of being beautiful verses country life and the literal black and white world are just so poignant. All in the same country during roughly the same period of time. (No, I am not basing that loosely on the fact that the three decades were before I was born. But really thirty years isn't too far apart in the history of the world.)

I'm wondering what I should read next...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

How smart are you?

Here's a fun quiz you might want to take: quiz

I did not score so well (57%), but it was a very informative quiz.

And it gives me one more reason to love popcorn.

Although I'm not sure I can eat anymore whole grains without turning into a whole grain.

Thank goodness it didn't tell me that I have to stop eating cookies all together. As our friend Katrina says, "it's all in moderation." Although I should cut back on the cookies/sugar.

Good luck!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

the belt conundrum

I have a belt conundrum.

Pants, trousers or jeans it doesn't matter; when made for a man, they have extra belt loops. Look on the back, there are typically two or three belt loops back there. On my pants (so I'm guessing typical of women's pants) there is only one. Then, one belt loop on either side and two in the front.

Do you know what happens when you sit down, in a belt, with only one belt loop at the back?

This is my conundrum (I like that word):

It has a tendency to pull your belt.

I have ruined more than one belt this way.

And you can't say it's because I'm fat.

I don't sit funny.

Most of my pants are too big and they're falling down, so I have to hike them up before sitting down, so it's not like they're being pulled by my fat butt (remember, I'm not fat).

No. I have decided it is because of the one belt loop. Why else would that part of the belt be completely destroyed?

Bill's belts aren't destroyed.

He has more belt loops.

I have a conundrum.

Maybe I should buy better belts.

Where do you buy a better belt?

Does anyone else ruin their belts?

If not, please tell me where to find your amazing not-ruined belt. I need a new one.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

got no time to blog

We drove home this morning.

I have been working on our Halloween costumes and made good headway.

We're about to leave for youth group.

Bill is very unhappy with the Lions.

All this means there's not much to blog about and I don't have the time to sit and think of something creative.

It's Sunday, I can take a break.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

family rivalry

Central played Ball State in Monkey, Banana (Muncie, Indiana). Bill and I went into the game telling my family that they would be happy at the end of the game.

For the first half, Central made liars of us.

Then, as Bill predicted, it all fell apart. Central blew a seventeen point lead to lose 31-27. It was a good game.

Then we went to Greek's Pizza. I've talked about that before here. That pizza makes everything better.

Now we've settled in to watch Notre Dame football and the World Series. Good night.

Friday, October 21, 2011

the midwest and mexican food

Believe it or not, you can find good Mexican food in the midwest. Maybe that's not so surprising. The other thing that is not surprising is that I ate too much. Yes. It happened again. I guess the good news is that the last time I blogged about it was May. So once every five months is not too bad. We did get a walk in today and I got to do my yoga, sit-ups and push-ups.

Then we drove to my parent's house. There's a new Mexican restaurant in town, so we tried it out. It was good. Too good. I was very hungry when we got here, and I ate way too many chips and salsa. Curse the chips and salsa.

No. Don't curse them. They're too good. Curse my inability to say no.

Eventually I said no. It was just way too late.

Not to mention we tried the corn dip my mom was in the process of making when we arrived, and my sister brought "Halloween" cookies that we tried too. It is my own fault I feel this miserable. I stuffed myself like a Thanksgiving turducken.

It could have been the margarita that did me in. But I don't think so. I blame the food. And the water. I'm like a water buffalo.

Maybe it was the margarita...

This is what I had planned to blog about: I love the midwest. Some people think it's too flat. I don't. I understand the need the first settlers had to stay here. I love Michigan.

And I appreciate the flat plains that exist in Indiana.

I repeat: I love Michigan.

But I have always enjoyed seeing so many miles at one time just on the road. From 236th street (this takes you from the highway to the small town that is Cicero, Indiana) you can see the two water towers in Arcadia and the two water towers in Cicero as you drive in. I just think that's so cool.

When I was in Jr. and Sr. High, we would go to all the football and basketball games. As we would drive home, I would look out the car window and pick out the different towns based on our location and the light "pollution". It used to be easy back then. Each small town was easily distinguishable. Now, Indianapolis has enough lights to block out the small towns surrounding it.

It's just a sign of the times. Perhaps we'll regress as we learn to appreciate the night sky.

The midwest is in my heart and I belong to the midwest. It's just who I am.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

the wrong magical beans

No. This isn't the story of Jack and the beanstalk. It's the story of "Emily bought the wrong beans".

I was going to make 2-Bean chili with Avocado for dinner one night. It turns out we had enough leftovers to make it, so I can make the chili one night next week.

Which is good since I bought the wrong kind of beans. The recipe calls for kidney or black beans and pinto beans.

I was staring at the pinto beans and price comparing the Meijer Organic brand to the regular Meijer brand to the name brand. I decided the Meijer Organic brand was the way to go and grabbed the can.

This was on Tuesday.

This morning, when I opened the cupboard to grab something completely different, the can of Organic Pinto beans caught my eye. I have no idea why, but there they were. Off to the side, taunting me.

Because they're not pinto beans. I grabbed the Garbanzo beans.

I must have been pretty focused on those prices.

I'm sure the two cans were right next to each other.

There are many uses for garbanzo beans and they will not be wasted, nor do they need to be returned. But one of the uses is not in this chili. I just can't imagine those flavors together... maybe I'm wrong.

Maybe it is the magical fruit that will make everything taste okay...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

pop quiz

Don't worry, this is going to be easy.

1. While driving your car, you approach an intersection with a flashing red light. Do you:

A. drive through it, ignoring the red light. What? Is a light supposed to stop you?
B. Yield, but keep going even though there are two other cars at the intersection.
C. Stop, like you're supposed to, and honk while the other moron drives right through completely ignoring the flashing red light.

True or False:

While driving your car at night you should not use your headlights.


1. C.
2. False. It is dangerous to drive at night without your headlights. Please use caution and make sure that even if your vehicle has an "Automatic" setting for your lights, that they are indeed on at night (when it is dark).

If you got any of the above wrong, please do everyone a favor and do NOT get behind the wheel of a car. Go directly to a driving class and take it. Pass it, then you can join the rest of the people who aren't paying attention.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tuesdays and toothbrushes

How come the toothbrush has changed so much? I just saw one of our old toothbrushes lying (laying?) by the mud sink in the laundry room. Once it's been used to clean teeth for the dentist recommended period, it gets relegated to cleaning other things like sink drains, small car parts, and who knows what else.

The toothbrush that's by the sink is old. I can tell, not because it's worn, but because of its style. The necks are bent, the bristles are all the same size, the bristles are all different sizes, they're angled, etc., etc., etc. There's a lot of change in that small, little tool.

On a different note, we went to see Lauren at MSU tonight.

I've enjoyed our visits to the college freshmen. We get to see all these universities and the diversity that comes with each.

State is huge. I spent most of the time fiddling with the GPS as we drove through campus, so I missed "nothing but dorms" (as Bill explained it).

The university buildings I did notice looked, well collegiate. We had a good time, although our visit was brief. We had to go see her on a weeknight because our weekends are so busy (we're free in May of 2012, if you'd like to book us). We will go back and see her in the spring, when everything is in bloom and Bill's too busy sneezing from allergies to enjoy being outdoors. Yup, that's when we'll go back to visit her.

The next college visit we have planned is to Ball State to watch them smother CMU at this Saturday's football game. It's a rebuilding year for CMU (they have had seven division titles in their thirty six years in the MAC, you can fact check that here).

(Just for fun, Bill was at Notre Dame. Have a college you'd like to visit? We'll take you there! I still haven't been to U of M. I know, *gasp!* I'll get there, I've heard there are beautiful buildings. And I.U. is on my list. I've been there, but never took an actual tour of campus. Hmm, I think my bucket list is pretty heavy on the architecture side...)

Monday, October 17, 2011

my competition

I'm watching Ellen and there have been several commercials for ready-to-eat foods.

I'm sure they're good.

If you like eating food that comes out of a cardboard box.

I am not a fan of those kinds of foods. In fact Bill had a craving for a jambalaya box mix, a few months ago, and I had a busy week. So I obliged and bought it for him. I had a forkful. On the flip side, I have a recipe for Sausage, Shrimp and Red Rice which is essentially the same dish. The boxed kind made me crave the homemade one. The box kind was super salty and had a weird flavor. I don't know how to describe it; but if you've had homemade food and then have a similar dish from a box and you've tasted the difference you know what I'm talking about.

We love to entertain. I love to bake goodies to share. I have received my fair share of compliments (I've come a long way from mac and cheese and hot dogs!), but if what our guests are used to eating is this boxed food, then I will win hands down.

I'm okay with that.

Speaking of mac and cheese, I've been on the hunt for a really good baked mac and cheese dish. I've had many friends share their recipes with me, swearing that it's the best they've ever had.

I'm picky. I'm looking for a specific smoothness.

For our anniversary, we went to a very nice restaurant. It was not our first choice, that place was unexpectedly closed, but we had been wanting to try the Chop House which is where we ended up. With my steak I ordered the side of three cheese baked macaroni. It was delicious. I asked our waitress what three cheese were in it and explained my search for a dish this good. She told me the three cheeses were Parmesan, white Cheddar and Gruyere. Then she told me to google it and I could find the recipe.

I made it the other night and I found it! This is the dish I've been looking for. Smooth, creamy, light, not oily and just plain delicious. I'm so happy. I love macaroni and cheese.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Fact: the average (American) adult starts working on their costume 61 days before Halloween.

I came up with our costume a year ago (actually a few years ago; it was a year ago that I finally decided that we would wear these costumes for this Halloween), and have been purchasing the accessories and different pieces since August.

I've always kept our costumes a secret, it makes it more fun. At least for me.

The first year Bill and I finally went "together" was our last Halloween party in Toms River. He was a devil and I was an angel. The next year, at Dave and Greg's Halloween party, we were hippies. We looked awesome. That was a great costume.

Then we didn't go together for the next couple of years for various reasons, most of them having to do with Bill and work.

After the devil costume, I made the executive decision to have costumes that did not involve make-up. Or red face paint.

When I questioned Bill, he would mostly whine about a costume and ask me why we had to "dress up". So I picked a costume where we could wear jeans.

We were ceiling fans... it's visual, see?Last year we were the U.S. Curling Team (no pictures on this computer nor did I blog about it last year! *gasp*, look for a picture tomorrow). Both of these shirts were designed by Shannon, check out her website!

This year, our costumes are a bit more labor intensive on my part. I'm taking a break from working on them. They're almost finished. You'll have to wait until Halloween to see what we are...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

baking and cooking

This morning a few Quotarians held a baking class with the Cool Cats for Sweetest Day. We broke down into two groups; one group made Cinnamon Brownies and Oreo Truffles and the other group made Apple Crisp, Rice Krispy Treats and Chocolate Scotcheroos (Rice Krispy Treats with chocolate & butterscotch topping). We had a lot of fun and lots of yummy treats.

When I got home I made Apple Turnovers (for Gary).

This is what I've learned: I do not like cooking with cornstarch. Check out this website. I've tried to learn what I'm doing wrong... but truthfully, I'm about to give up.

I made a second attempt at the chocolate pudding the other day.

It's still not pudding.

And then today, the apple turnover filling wasn't very thick. So I googled "tips on using cornstarch" and found the above website.


So, what am I doing wrong?

Apparently everything.

I give up. Cornstarch 2, Emily 0

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Friday Show and Tell

Here are a few photos I said I'd share and then never got around to sharing. These two events are the only ones I can think of... anyone remember what else I said I'd share? (help me out here readers...)

The 28th Street Metro Cruise (August 27th)

(Can you see the line of cars? It's just so much fun. The irony of this photo is the price of gas... we love the earth and will do our part to save it, but classic cars are... classic.)

These photos are from our trip home from Ohio.
It was very pretty but difficult to capture, inside the car. I tried.

things I keep forgetting to share...

because the world wide web is clearly the place to share all my thoughts and secrets.

None of the things I'm about to share are secrets.

I know. I continue to disappoint you.

I hope not. I hope that sigh was just a half-hearted attempt to laugh at my bad joke...

I'll just continue on:

I forgot to tell you that we walked approximately 6 miles at Cedar Point. I wore my pedometer and did check it before we'd get on a ride and again after to make sure it didn't register any "steps". Six miles just walking from the car, around the park, and standing in line. Actually, not all the shuffling in line registered either, so who knows how far two hours is in line terms.

I burned the roof of my mouth the other night when I made the "Baked Eggs in Spicy Tomato Sauce with Goat Cheese and Toast". I burned it bad. The good news about mouth burns is how quickly they heal. Yesterday it was a huge, painful blister, today it's almost gone. It's a little sore, and breakfast was not pleasant, but now it's almost nonexistent!

I'm painting again. This time at First Place (the office building next to our church; it houses classrooms, the youth group hang-out spot aka "The Vine" and almost all of the church's administrative personal, as well as other offices for other organizations). I'm painting the new JFON office. They already have two offices; one is nice and big, the other is itty-bitty. The church as given them another room and it's currently a peach color (very blech!). I volunteer at JFON on Monday mornings, and offered to paint.

I should learn to keep my mouth shut.

Tomorrow is show-and-tell day, so be sure to stop back by to see pictures of things I've told you about, but forgot to post!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

ranch dance

I'm doing the ranch dance. I'm not sure what that looks like, but it's a happy dance.

I just made homemade ranch dressing. What's that you say? You'd like the recipe? Of course I'll share it. This is too good to keep to myself.

We don't have any fresh parsley but we do have fresh dill. I just happened to have buttermilk (leftover from last week's pot pies) and I had a coupon for mayo so we have two jars of that (don't worry, we'll go through that by Christmas. What? Is that bad?)

I know the dressing needs to sit in the fridge and just chill for awhile, but the little taste tests I had are good enough to get me excited. Bill wanted to drink it. I managed to keep him from doing that (promises of fried steak and twice baked potatoes helped). Now we wait.

The potatoes are in their first round in the oven. The steaks won't get fried until just before everything else is ready to go. They don't take long. We've been eating pretty healthy around here (minus the road trip and amusement park food). It's time for some good country cooking.

And a ranch dance.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

What's up Doc?

You might assume that with a title like that, I had to go see the doctor. You would be wrong.

This is what I was thinking as I was peeling and cutting up some carrots. I've made mention before that one of my favorite things to eat for lunch, outside of apple season, is carrots with hummus. I had to buy carrots for some other dishes I'm using, so my lunches alternate between the in-season apples and the carrots.

In true Looney Tunes fashion, while I was cooking dinner, I watched in slow motion as the pot of boiling tomato sauce bubbled. I was peering over the pot, checking on it, like you do, when the bubble started. It was supposed to be simmering. I looked closer (yup, I leaned closer) to see if this was a lot of small bubbles. As the sauce moved and my brain comprehended what was about to happen, my body froze. I couldn't move out of the way. The bubble grew bigger and bigger. The entire pot seemed to be alive. It wasn't many small bubbles, it was one BIG bubble.


Mt. Vesuvius erupted. All over me. As if the sauce were taunting me. And all I could hear was Bugs Bunny with his carrot, "eh, what's up doc?"

Needless to say dinner was delicious. I made Baked Eggs in Spicy Tomato Sauce with Goat Cheese and Toast. Yeah, I'm going to have to find a shorter name for that dish. It was exactly what the name says it was. The only problem was that I burned the roof of my mouth. It was hot. Very hot. Another Bugs Bunny moment.

Hey, wait. It's a full moon isn't it?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Lions, Tigers and Bears. Oh my!

The only thing that would make this perfect is if the Tigers were playing the K.C. Royals (okay, technically they're from Missouri, but it could have happened).

Get it? Kansas. Lions, tigers and bears, oh my!

Okay. I probably didn't have to explain it.

We can't watch the Tigers game. It's too close.

Instead, we're waiting for the Lions vs. Bears game. I'm making the grocery list for tomorrow and then I'm going to go do dishes. I'm also texting Sarah. She's giving me the game updates. It's much less stressful this way. Call us chickens. We don't care. We already jumped on the bandwagon.

Yes. I admit it. I haven't been a long-time Tigers fan.

For you sports fans, you won't like what I'm about to say: I like the teams that are in the mid-west in general. If there's a game on and the team is from Michigan, Indiana, Illinois (for the most part), Wisconsin or Minnesota, I'll root for them. The only sport that is the exception is hockey. (enter strong midwest accent) You don't live here and not root for the Wings. They're our team.

So I've rooted for the Tigers. I'm just a bigger (and more disappointed) Cubs fan. But since the Tigers have had a very exciting year, and our neighbor spent most of the summer working on his house, outside with the Tigers game on, I've not been in the dark. But I admit that I'm still jumping onto the bandwagon.

I'm going to go do the dishes now.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday drives

We drove back from Oberlin this morning/afternoon. We took Highway 2 along Lake Erie. It was very pretty and amazing at how the fall colors changed so much in just two days. It was a very nice drive, but it's nice to be home.

After a fun day at Cedar Point (which sadly was so busy we only rode: the Raptor, Blue Streak, Gemini and Millennium, I'll get back to that in a minute) we tried to find the UMC so we could check service times for this morning. Abbie and I were certain we had seen the sign the night before, yet try as we might, we could not find it again. It wasn't in the GPS either, which is odd. We drove down Professor, up Main, over to Lorraine, yet no UMC. We finally decided to check the service time of the UCC only to discover that the sign they have at their drive is for the preschool. No service times listed there either.

It was at that point that I threw my hands up in the air and said, "well that just means we're supposed to have breakfast instead of going to church!"

We went to a little "diner" in downtown Oberlin and had a delicious (and cheap) breakfast. On the way back to drop Abbie off at her dorm, what did we pass? The UMC. It was the one block we did not drive down last night. Too late now. Abbie was back and made it to her church (it was too late for us to attend, we had to get back in time for youth group tonight) and we headed home.

Back to yesterday's adventure on "America's Roller Coast". Yeah, it was busy. It was a beautiful day, coupled with Halloweekends and that brought out the crowds. It wasn't too crowded. But the lines were long. Longer than I have ever seen.

Since we only rode four rides and were there from 1p-10p that should tell you something. This is how long we waited; Raptor: 1 1/2, Blue Streak: 45 min (who waits in line at the Blue Streak?), Gemini: 45 min, Millennium: 2 full hours.

By that time it was dark. I have only ridden the Millennium once before, in the daylight. Oh my goodness. That first drop, in total darkness... I gritted my teeth for almost the entire ride. And then when it was over, I was shaking.

It was thrilling.

We all just laughed and laughed. There were six girls who were in line in front of us, they were hilarious. They were scared. The screaming that emanated from them just in line had us in stitches. Then they climbed into the cars... more screaming from them, tears from laughter from us. Then they disappeared into the darkness. What a ride.

Tonight we'll take the 'Vette to youth group. It's still sunny and warm here. Sunday drives are the best.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

room occupancy

One hundred and twenty people are allowed in our room.

Not really. But that's what I thought when I was looking at the sign on the back of our door.

Our room number is 120. The sign has the rates (like they are supposed to post) but I read it as occupancy.

Today we will abandon our room with it's 120 person occupancy and head toward Cedar Point. Whose occupancy is a lot more. It's a gorgeous day here in northern Ohio with temperatures promising to reach the 80's! Bill mentioned Indian Summer in his post the other day, it's a very funny post and seemingly true.

There will be no pictures today. Cedar Point (for those of you who don't know) is an amusement park. One of the best, if not the best. The number of roller coasters it has (not just carnival rides) is higher than any amusement park I know of. TV specials have been made just on Cedar Point. In the Travel Channel's top ten lists, Cedar Point always ranks when it's about roller coasters (and water parks even though technically their water park is a separate entrance/separate fee).

At any rate, whatever can fit in my pockets is going to the park with me. Nothing more, nothing less. Tissues for seasonal drippy nose? Check. Chapstick? Check. Mobile phone? Check. That's it. Thus, no camera. Too many things can happen to a camera on a ride.

We are very excited and have been looking forward to this for quite awhile (since the Sr. High went on their workcamp trip and Bill suggested this to Abbie). So, as we like to say, "See you on the flip side!"

Friday, October 7, 2011

Shrek Fridays

I have spent the last three days working from Dave and Greg's (The Gruley Towne, as Bill calls it). We have been in Detroit for Bill, as he has had work over here. From here we are headed to Ohio to visit Abbie at Oberlin! We are looking forward to it. We will also take a trip to Cedar Point. The weather is going to be lovely.

I've made dinner the last two nights; chicken enchiladas and chicken pot pie. If you read yesterday's post you know about my attempt to make pudding. At least the cookies turned out.

Greg is currently watching "Shrek 4ever" and I haven't seen it. It's pretty funny. Fortunately my work is done and we're headed out. Time to go pack.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

my apologies to Bill Cosby

I tried to make pudding.

Not Jello pudding, or even pudding with gelatin.

Nope, this was homemade, from scratch pudding.

It was supposed to be.

Instead it turned into a delicious chocolate sauce for vanilla ice cream.

I'm not sure where it went wrong. But in the end all that matters is that after chilling for six hours (two was the recipe minimum) it was still in liquid form. Quite a liquid form with not solidity at all.

Greg said it was, "tasty".

As Dave describes it, "free-flowing".

Bill called it, "not a colloid".

Jello is definitely onto something...

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

proposal and other written documents

I had a different post planned. A few of you know how that goes. You work on something in your mind and then something completely different happens to you and that's what you end up blogging about.

Don't worry, I'll get to the other post (I still have 56 days to go).

Instead I'm going to gripe about proposals. Not wedding proposals, gosh. That ship sailed a long time ago. And while my impatience didn't allow for a dramatic proposal, the story is still good. That's another post for another day.

No instead I'm talking about business model proposals.

Oh, wait. Am I going to lose you? No, really. This gets interesting.

I'm writing to the few of you who read my blog consistently. Who I know are similar to me and that is you appreciate the English language, and for the most part do okay at speaking and writing it (do NOT critique that sentence).

I had to retype a proposal for Quota. Yeah, you can click on the link and go read it if you want. If you want to pull your hair out.

Bill spends a lot of time writing proposals. I know he takes the time to not only proof-read them, but to make sure they are clear and concise.

Our own Quota club had to rewrite our bylaws and policies and procedures manuals. And while they weren't any more interesting than the proposal from International, at least the woman who wrote them did so in a professional manner.

I should be an editor.

This proposal reads as though someone took notes, typed them up and sent them off. No proofing. Capitalization of a title here, but not there. Complete sentences here, but not there. Repetition galore. Ugh!

I'm already on edge because they showed a terrible Power Point presentation that they expect individual clubs to show to potential members. It was beyond awful. And seeing how they're trying to reach a younger generation, I spoke up.

And I was shut down.

It's a good thing I know people.

Not those people.

People who have held office in Quota. People who felt the same way about the presentation as I did. People who are going to raise Cain. You know, holy heck.

So to have to retype this entire proposal (because apparently we, Quota, are stuck in the 20th century and don't know how to have electronic versions available, oh it will be once all the meetings have been held...) just sort of made it worse. I'm part of an organization where the International office, who is representing all of Quota, can't even type up a decent proposal? A 7th grader could have done a better job. At least it would have been shorter.

I have no where to go with this. No ending. Just a big, long complaint about the apparent lack of proper English/grammar. I just hope no one got paid to write that...

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

one last drive...

We took the 'Vette out for one last drive. We went and got ice cream (it is the "ice cream car" after all). The ice cream store was full of autumn flavors; pumpkin, apple pie, blueberry cobbler. Yum! I should have had the apple pie like Bill, but I stuck with my consistently reliable flavor of Royal Coconut and chocolate.

We took a lovely drive along the Thornapple River. The colors are changing. The sun was shining bright. It was a gorgeous fall day.

When we got home, I suggested we take a walk. So instead of washing the car and "putting it up" for the season, we took a lovely walk, enjoying the fresh air.

We can put the car away next week.

Monday, October 3, 2011

more Art Prize photos!

We spent almost the entire day, yesterday walking around downtown looking at Art Prize. We saw 8 of the top 10. Here are more photos of this amazing city!

the city being highlighted by the gorgeous sunshine.

this entire scene is made up of lottery tickets... (except for the mirror)
Metaphorest (top ten)
The Gift (in our church basement, top 25, it's a story and it's so neat!)

hahaha Do Not Enter!

This piece is knitted!

Gerald R. Ford visits Art Prize (top ten)

Mantis Dreaming

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sundays and Art Prize

Bill is not making his Big Sunday Breakfast. We are going to go eat with our friends Nancy and Dave, then the four of us are going to check out Art Prize. Even though voting is down to the top ten, the crowds are likely to be big because there is finally sunshine. However, there have been big crowds even in the rain.

Then, the Jr. High youth group will be on an Art Prize scavenger hunt. Look for more photos.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Saturday off

This is the first Saturday I've had "off" in a very long time. And we're busy the next couple of Saturdays too.

I didn't relax too much, I went and watch Sarah play volleyball in an Invitational at Aquinas College. Then I came home and made lunch, ravioli. Then I cleaned.

Now, while Bill helps out the Sr. High youth at church with the Lot Party, I'm going to sit quietly and read.

It's nice not to have anything on the schedule.