Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Crazy Like a Person Who Doesn't Want a Plague

This fine Tuesday morning, August 28th, I woke to the uber-teen asking, "Well, it won't kill him will it?" in reference to making the uber-boyfriend the promised Philly cheese steak for lunch from leftovers that she forgot to refrigerate before going to bed. The sad thing is, he'll likely think about it just a second, shrug and eat it anyway.

This, just after waking the previous horrible (evil Monday) morning to pizza crust and Doritos strewn about the kitchen, the table full of unfolded laundry (and don't ya just know, shedding kitties lounging in the middle of it). I became very animated and said, "Oh my God, I can't live this way!" and would have run to choke down a "happy pill", were I one to partake in such. The uber-teen, leaning nonchalantly against the contaminated counter munching day old pizza crust, offered me the unwashed coffee cup I'd used the day before and cheerfully replied, "Oh, c'mon. Don't be so dramatic, it's not that bad. Have a cup of coffee! :)"

Last night, I dreamed I stabbed bacteria as big as your head with the new X-acto knife I'd purchased for a design project earlier in the evening. I was screaming, "4.0!" with every thrust of the blade.

However, all is not lost. This is just the beginning of my second week of this "back to school, working and parenting" thing. I will merely stay up 24-48 hours getting all my assignments completed early, don the space suit and spend the rest of the week religiously following correct contamination procedures and bulldozing my kitchen.

The uber-teen and uber-boyfriend however, ages 17 and 19, are happy as can be to continue on the dangerous path (leading to food poisoning) that they're on. They'll probably some day look back fondly upon these college years, writing happy songs/poetry about it even.

How do college students survive it all?

Monday, August 27, 2007

Cool Stuff

See the Moon turn red

On August 28, the Moon will plunge through Earth's shadow, and the United States' West Coast sees the best show.

August 23, 2007
The spectacular eclipse occurs the morning of August 28. Circumstances favor observers west of the Mississippi, who missed out on the March lunar eclipse. Better still, this event marks the first central lunar eclipse since 2000.

A central eclipse is one where part of the Moon passes through the center of Earth's shadow. This results in a longer-lasting eclipse, and it likely will result in a more darkly colored Moon at totality. The Moon's northern edge passes through the shadow's center, which means its northern half will look noticeably darker than its southern half.

The penumbral part of the eclipse begins at 3:54 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The first hint of shadow won't be visible to East Coast observers until at least 4:30 a.m. Watch the Moon low in the southwest as the limb near Oceanus Procellarum gradually darkens.

Read more.

Check out an Unusually cool video.

More cool stuff-

Huge hole in universe surprises astronomers
It's the biggest known void in the cosmos

Two views of the hole in the universe: The left view shows a “cold spot” within the circle on a color-coded image of the full-sky cosmic microwave background, as seen by NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe. The right view shows the same region on the Very Large Array Sky Survey, with blue indicating low radio emissions.

The universe has a huge hole in it that dwarfs anything else of its kind. The discovery caught astronomers by surprise.

The hole is nearly a billion light-years across. It is not a black hole, which is a small sphere of densely packed matter. Rather, this one is mostly devoid of stars, gas and other normal matter, and it's also strangely empty of the mysterious "dark matter" that permeates the cosmos. Other space voids have been found before, but nothing on this scale.

Astronomers don't know why the hole is there.

"Not only has no one ever found a void this big, but we never even expected to find one this size," said researcher Lawrence Rudnick of the University of Minnesota.

Rudnick's colleague Liliya R. Williams also had not anticipated this finding.

"What we've found is not normal, based on either observational studies or on computer simulations of the large-scale evolution of the universe," said Williams, also of the University of Minnesota.

The finding will be detailed in the Astrophysical Journal.

Read more.

Scientists found life on Mars back in the 70s

Mars could be home to “extremophiles”

The soil on Mars may indeed be teeming with microbes, according to a new interpretation of data first collected more than 30 years ago.

The search for life on Mars appeared to hit a dead end in 1976 when Viking landers touched down on the red planet and failed to detect biological activity.

There was another flurry of excitement a decade later, when Nasa thought it had found evidence of life in a Mars meteorite but doubts have since been cast on that finding.

Today, Joop Houtkooper from Justus-Liebig-University in Giessen, Germany, will claim the Viking spacecraft may in fact have encountered signs of a weird life form based on hydrogen peroxide on the subfreezing, arid Martian surface.

Read more.

Death-Defying Mars Rovers: Riders in the Storm

The martian rovers Spirit and Opportunity continue to successfully weather a series of severe dust storms that threaten to cut power to their solar panels, but it's still a day-to-day battle for survival, scientists say.

The pervasive dust in the martian atmosphere, as well as dust settling onto the machinery, impedes the ability of the rovers' solar panels to convert sunlight into enough electricity to supply the their needs. One critical need is to protect each rover's "vital organs" of internal computer, electronics, heaters and batteries from becoming so cold that something might, quite literally, snap.

Both robots are in position to pounce on exciting science targets: Spirit is ready to gather more evidence for long-past explosive volcanic activity in an area dubbed Home Plate; Opportunity is a mere 130 feet (40 meters) from the point where it will enter Victoria Crater.

Ride out the storm

The twin rovers landed on the planet in January 2004. They have wheeled across Mars for far longer than their original 90-day warranties. There's no doubt that the long-lived robots have a special connection to their operators.

"There is a very strong attachment. It has been for many of us our everyday work for years. There's a tremendous bond with them," said John Callas, project manager for the Mars Exploration Rovers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California. "We're just going to try to ride out this storm, he emphasized.

Read more.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Because I Can...

Sure I said I didn't have time to blog much today, but I changed my mind.

Instead of getting a head start on some work and next week's assignments, I decided to just grab that bottle of wine, pop some smooth tunes into the drive, and blog until hungry/sleepy (whichever happens first.)

Sounds fun, huh?

Then I found myself over at Public Pondering listening to sad songs thanks be to a Big White Hat challenge.

So now I'm halfway through a bottle of wine, watching my e-mail alert go off like a crazy Mexican Shi Tzu contemplating joining eHarmony with a tagline that reads: "If you solemnly pledge to be Mister Perfect for aprox. 2 months then cease to even pretend to be engaged in our relationship, never calling, rarely expressing any emotion whatsoever until I finally snap...please email, because I just can't get enough of THAT! Thanks." Probably get a ton of responses.

Last time I did something like that (for laughs, of course) it was more like, "Gold digger seeking wealthy elderly gentleman with no family to speak of. Will make the last moments of your life memorable." and you wouldn't believe how many responses that one earned. Oo


Give me happy songs, people! Sweet songs, paranoid, angry or maybe plain old fed up. Heck, maybe even sad in a pi**ed off in leather tight pants kinda way. Girl power?

But please, no more sad songs...

Back in Business, Baby!

Photo Update: OK, so I ended up being too busy to even post photos! You know how it is. (4.0...blogging...4.0...blogging. 4.0!!!)

Since time is an issue, I will just post a few of my personal favorites from the vacation photo files and y'all can just go to my Photobucket album if you'd like to see them all (and I'm still in the process of adding more, but even still, many more there to see). :)

First, I pit stopped in WV and while I was unable to catch up with (read: stalk) a close friend while there as I had hoped, I did manage to get a beautiful shot from the main overlook in Grandview, WV before dark, so the pit stop was not a complete wash -

Then, off to NYC! I look about as happy as one who packed one pair of platform sandals, one pair of 6 inch heels, one pair of leather boots, and one pair of open heeled Prada loafers can be after hiking all over NYC just to find themself holding that bull up at 4 am while attempting to teach a liberal how to shoot a photo that isn't blurry. (Goes something like, "Tap that button then shoot the photo, dammit!") Complicated stuff there, huh? Needless to say, this is the only photo of me (and it took 4 or 5 tries to get that). *g* -

Here, I'm pretty sure I stumbled upon Michael Jackson sitting a a bench in winter garb while it was no less than 95 degrees. Not the best focus ever but I was very far away so had to blow this one up in photoshop (which always results in a blurry photo). Even still, funny stuff!

Below we see a pretty funny character. I gave him a dollar and proceeded to share meaningful (and long) bits of wisdom about the virtues of education and hard work. I think he would have liked to give me everything in his collection bucket to just shut up and go away. He was super funny and a great sport about letting me take his photo though!

Once again, click here for more.

So, there you have it, my favorite photos. Hope you guys had a fabulous weekend!

No, really.

As you may have noticed, I temporarily lost control of PJ Max for a couple of weeks, but all's well that ends well.

Since I last posted- The uber-teen has begun college (still residing with me until spring though, yay!), I've gone back to school as well (though I'll still be doing what I do, I may as well have the degree to tape to my wall, huh?), I actually took a real vacation (not just in my head and thanks again, RT) and got some work done too.

So, while I have very little free time this week, I do have lots of photos to share. Be sure to stop by tomorrow for those!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Vain Memester...

...why dost strive my quirks to type?

Because memes are fun, that's why!

Here are the rules.

1. Let others know who tagged you.

InsoluBlog: Always separates when shaken

Otherwise known as... The Great Wise Insolukuta.

Ah, memories.

OK now, that was just cruel. Moving on...

2. Players start with 8 random facts about themselves.

Relax, we'll get to that.

3. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts.

Mission accomplished!

4. Players should tag 8 other people and notify them they have been tagged.

That's right, because tagging without informing is just not cool.

Here we go, 8 random facts.

1. I scream inside at every single spammish e-mail alert all day long. I'm slowly bringing myself closer and closer to a stroke because I get all excited at the sound of the e-mail alert, just to see promises of singles in my area, colon cleanser, penile enlargement, and stupid credit card offers at the sound of that chime. Yet, I rather miss "hot and sexy single Sally who wants to meet me" (no, really, she does) when she's not there, waiting for someone special. Waiting for someone just like me.

2. I have watched late night 1-900 commercials just for new material to amuse, scare, or disgust (whatever the case may be) telemarketers. A telemarketer from Australia once called back "just to talk", and continued to do so until I changed my telephone number. It was still worth the laugh.

3. At 16, I was caught smoking at church camp, ratted out but not sent home (because I cried pretty). My mom was mortified and my dad was amused (especially that I paid 90 of my very own hard-earned dollars for that), and this is why I am who I am. (Yes, it's all their doing.)

4. Nobody likes to play truth or dare with me because I always pick truth and it's always more shocking than any dare could be. Yes, I was ranting, "You can't handle the truth!" long before Jack Nicholson, yet he makes all the big bucks.

5. I've found that the above can also be used to curb other's urges to be overly interested in one's personal business. TMI can be a valuable tool, just don't misuse it or you might find yourself a permanent spot on the Jerry Springer Show.

6. I think, no I know, that the F bomb is an extremely valuable life saving tool as well. Most especially if you are a person who exudes quiet southun charm (one who isn't known for dropping the F bomb at all), people shut up and listen when you finally do drop that bomb. I once went four or more years without dropping the bomb and shut down a very large neighborhood argument (that didn't even involve me). When I dropped it, I dropped it with glee, creating a truly violent and destructive shock that is likely remembered by all to this very day. There's just nothing like seeing grown men and women alike shut those gaping mouths and walk away. On a military base. I've not dropped it in 10 years, but I'm really just storing all that energy up for the next battle.

7. I am a huge Malkin fan, but I personally thought it was incredibly silly of her to assure everyone that she hadn't worn a two piece bathing suit since having children when someone tried to pass the "two piece clad hottie photoshop job" off as her. Of course, I support her right to dress in any manner she pleases and was about as irritated as her other fans that she was being attacked in that manner, but I saw no need for her to have to defend her honor in such an extreme way and would have preferred to see her highlight the difference between scantily clad little girls on a public beach and grown women in the privacy of their own back yards. Of course, I was also upset to once hear FNC's Sean Hannity say he was so modest that he wore a t-shirt in the pool with the family. C'mon, that's just wrong. So, let's just clear the air. I am a Christian, a conservative, and a mom. I pay plenty for the liberty of living in the privacy of the woods and wear just whatever I darn well please to the pool, especially if alone. It must be the risque libertarian streak because I just don't really care at all what anyone thinks of that. If my example causes teen aged girls around the world to drop their tops in public and forsake Jesus, then we have bigger problems than my wardrobe folks!

8. My favorite song by Zero 7 used to be "In The Waiting Line"...

...but now it's "Somersault"...

...because those who share jelly beans rock (and there's no available video code for Blue Merle's "Every Ship Must Sail".)

Oh, and I ate a taco for breakfast while reading classical poetry this morning.

How's that for 8 random facts plus a bonus? ;)

Maybe y'all should all be sweet and give me some of your personal ideas for unusual and/or original memes in the comments, because this one has made the rounds and then some.

Go, do it now!

Friday, July 20, 2007

One More Try

So maybe I never was able to combine live blogging my blogging and linky-love (for more than a couple of hours anyhow). It was a lofty dream, no?

Since linky-lovin' is way more fun, I present....

Me Linky-Love You Looong Time!

(Or until I run out of time, whichever comes first.)

Beginning where I left off yesterday, I give you ...

The thoughts of SGT Wilks at A Female Soldier 2. You'll find some terrific photographs there as well. You'll love them, just go check them out already!

The Patriot, of A Soldier's Perspective presents- Soldiers Defend Body Armor


Here is something that you will not hear on the floor of Congress about how good our gear is:

Rachel, of Channelling Cloe shows us how to play the game, and I quote...

You tease, you lead, you beg and grovel...

Yeah, baby. ;) Go Pay heed to the geek!

Now, Rachel E. is doing a fabulous job over at
Conservathink, so go say hi and tell her so because it's true, Guns Don't Kill People, Gun Control Advocates Kill People!

This just in- I know I'm not live-blogging my linky-love blogging today, but if I were, it would look like this.

5:16 PM - Right in the middle of commenting on another great post from the Crazy Politico, of Crazy Politico's Rantings, the uber-teen walked by and I totally remembered to show her these super cool eyeglass frames (because I'm going to finally just go completely blind if I keep ignoring this particular need) and forgot what I was going to say on the topic of Merit Pay. Guess I earn very little merit there. Unless linky-love makes it all better...

Moving on.

The ever eloquent Dr. Phat Tony, of the one and only Dr. Phat Tony's posts, Huh?
Seriously, go read A Fallen Soldier, and check back for possible updates as well. (Bring tissues.)

Also, be sure to visit the Captain, over at First In Engine, and check out
HILLARY & BILL, A LOVE FOR THE AGES...WRETCH! (Yeah, bring barf bags.) No offense Captain. :)

Next up, is Sssteve, of First With Flair (whose last post was HA HA HA HA HA HA on July 11, 2007). Go tell him he's slacking, we need more photos!

Where, oh where, is The Great Spewing One, of Fmragtops Spews??? Because, if there was some sort of an announcement, I missed it. :(

Stew, of Get Stewed, is setting the scene and creating the mood in Yoink!
(Liberal tree hugging moon bat wacky persons beware...)

Now, the moment we've all been waiting for.


Insolublog is back!

Another Presidential Malaise Moment (Attempting to comment on this article, chock full of treasures, will be like saying "Um, thanks. Here, I have these pebbles to offer in return..." after being handed pearls, but go ahead and try anyhow. I did.)

Then, there's the issue of an Insolublog meme. You do not want to miss that. ;)

Finally, we are presented with, Pun With Fropaganda. Frightening? Perhaps. Worth the read? Absolutely. So, you go there now!

Our very own KateyKakes of Kate's Kafe, has become a Scrubs addict, and is suffering from insomnia. So sorry Kate. Quick, somebody rush over there and post some Al Gore videos!

Now, where is that Peakah? C'mon, just throw us a photo of the "pretty sweet rugged leather outback hat" and we'll all be happy! Or feature s'more family dimples, that works too. :)

Fitch, of Radioactive Liberty lays down the law, giving us the New Recliner Rules and then disappears. That's likely very common, not only after purchasing a recliner but likely involving a battery operated remote control. (Doesn't it always?)

Big news coming up.

The Anti-Hippy is engaged! (Why are you evil conservatives not lining up to tell him to run away, run away fast??) Anyhow, congrats, AH. We wish you all the best (even if it need be at knife point). That's code for, "Go over and wish AH all the best, or else!"

Next up, The CUG is offering free gun pron. Yeah, you know you want it.

Mister Spacemonkey, of The Flying Spacemonkey Chronicles tells us everything we suspected is true!

It is a little known fact (only because I have failed to ramble about it until now), that The Indepundit (way back in the "Lt-Smash-Live From The Sandbox" days) was the very first blog I ever graced. After having received a few letters and telephone calls from friends (all military personnel), stating the media's outright dishonesty about what was really happening on the ground in Iraq, I was very concerned. I wanted to do something, just anything really, to help. Our military should not have to worry about such things while they are already sacrificing their very lives.

I was told to "google" for more information because some soldiers, those who could, were already speaking out. So, that's how I first discovered blogging. Of course, IMAO was on the sidebar, and you pretty much have to click and love IMAO. I can't express how great it was to have discovered the blogosphere (because before that I was just flipping channels back and forth between FNC, ABC, and CNN trying to figure out how the news coverage could be so different). This involved lots of yelling, "What the hell is going on?!" at the television and this almost never goes over well with the cat collection. So, now you know. I yell at CNN, collect cats, and The Indepundit rocks. (Who needs a meme, huh?)

Now, stop yawning and go support your local gunfighter!

Have a terrific weekend (and if I missed anyone just whine in comments, that always works)!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Live Blogging- Blogging (Plus, Lots of True Linky-Love)

Isn't that a novel idea?! Tell me, who has ever live blogged their blogging whilst bestowing linky-love upon all? Well, now you can say you've seen it all!

Yeah baby!

9:25 AM- Instead of feeding the always hungry OCD (aka the need to visit blogs in alphabetical order), I'm off to visit Linda, of Frankly, My Dear... because her health is way more important than my "issues".

Update- OK, so things are not anywhere near perfect, but she is ranting, and that's always a hopeful sign (plus, it's funny to see Lin type "WTH"??? repeatedly).

Frankly, my dear... We'll still love you if you spell it out (or even trade the "H" for an "F"). *g*

9:40 AM- Next up is RT, of Public Pondering, because I somehow missed visiting her blog yesterday and the "need to know" is stronger than "the need to be alphabetically crazy".

Update- Now here is a lady unafraid to type a big capital "F" on her public blog. Glad you're back, RT! :)

(This linky-action is like work, I need coffee.) Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Okie-dokie then.

10:15 AM- I am distracted from linky-loving by "Sex Ed for Kindergarteners 'Right Thing to Do,' Says Obama".

If this liberal can't rally conservatives, nobody can.

10:25 AM- I am distracted by a heart-to-heart with a certain uber-teen (see how that happens all natural like between mother and daughter, just whenever the time is right, without the intervention of jokers in Washington?) Coincidence? I think not.

10:45 AM- At long last! The need for organized alphabetical blogging shall be fed.

Hello 45-Caliber Justice, because who doesn't want some of that??

Update- Tyler D. posts, WEBCAM! Only I can't see because it's not loading correctly. Oh, the dreaded red x.

Ah well, linky-love you anyhow Tyler! (Pffft, indeed.)

11:02 AM- Must check out Cove Rebel's 5th Street Truths.

Update- So happy I stopped by. Because Cove Rebel just never disappoints nor fails to make one think. - So here I am...

Just so y'all know, do overs sometimes really do present themselves. :) How it turns out remains to be seen. However, when the time comes, I'll be sure to let you know. Until then... Be teased!

11:49 AM- Lunch break! Good thing I'm not hungry because I think had better take a blog break and get some work done. Never fear though!

I'll be back.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Abort, Retry, Ignore?

Let's just file this one under Wednesday madness.

Abort, Retry, Ignore?

Once upon a midnight dreary, fingers cramped and vision bleary,
System manuals piled high and wasted paper on the floor,
Longing for the warmth of bed sheets, still I sat there doing spreadsheets.
Having reached the bottom line I took a floppy from the drawer,
I then invoked the SAVE command and waited for the disk to store,
Only this and nothing more.

Deep into the monitor peering, long I sat there wond'ring, fearing,
Doubting, while the disk kept churning, turning yet to churn some more.
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token.
"Save!" I said, "You cursed mother! Save my data from before!"
One thing did the phosphors answer, only this and nothing more,
Just, "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

Was this some occult illusion, some maniacal intrusion?
These were choices undesired, ones I'd never faced before.
Carefully I weighed the choices as the disk made impish noises.
The cursor flashed, insistent, waiting, baiting me to type some more.
Clearly I must press a key, choosing one and nothing more,
From "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

With fingers pale and trembling, slowly toward the keyboard bending,
Longing for a happy ending, hoping all would be restored,
Praying for some guarantee, timidly, I pressed a key.
But on the screen there still persisted words appearing as before.
Ghastly grim they blinked and taunted, haunted, as my patience wore,
Saying "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

I tried to catch the chips off guard, and pressed again, but twice as hard.
I pleaded with the cursed machine: I begged and cried and then I swore.
Now in mighty desperation, trying random combinations,
Still there came the incantation, just as senseless as before.
Cursor blinking, angrily winking, blinking nonsense as before.
Reading, "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

There I sat, distraught, exhausted, by my own machine accosted.
Getting up I turned away and paced across the office floor.
And then I saw a dreadful sight: a lightning bolt cut through the night.
A gasp of horror overtook me, shook me to my very core.
The lightning zapped my previous data, lost and gone forevermore.
Not even, "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

To this day I do not know the place to which lost data go.
What demonic nether world us wrought where lost data will be stored,
Beyond the reach of mortal souls, beyond the ether, into black holes?
But sure as there's C, Pascal, Lotus, Ashton-Tate and more,
You will be one day be left to wander, lost on some Plutonian shore,
Pleading, "Abort, Retry, Ignore?"

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Friday Be Damned

I am feeling the need for a bit of mind-numbing this fine Tuesday, and thought I'd share. Let's face it, what's more mind-numbing than cat blogging?

That's right. Absolutely Nothing. It's not just for Friday anymore!

First up, meet Clopsy, new addition in Uber-World.

Clopsy was found a home but it was later discovered that he was deaf, so I brought him back to live with me where he can be given all of the special care that he needs.

Clopsy is fun, playful and perfectly normal other than not being able to hear. He's not always particularly bright, though. Evidence follows...

Yeah, Clopsy totally jumped right into the uber-teen's bath and needed a little help getting back out.

Thor is not so much in love with Clopsy as he is tolerant, for my sake I'm sure. Look deeply into his eyes. I'm not feelin' the love.

Next up, is newest kitty on the block- Pumpkin. She is the sweetest, cutest, and funniest little kitten I have ever had the pleasure of cuddling. Fulfilling all those biological clock/air raid siren needs, she pretty much rawks my sawks. (I've been waiting two whole years to say that about something.)

See? Even Thor loves her. This is their very first introduction.

Not so sure Pumpkin knows what, exactly, to make of Thor just yet. ;)

That concludes Tuesday's Cat Blogging.

Y'all have a great week!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


Sometimes, we meet a very special people and we don't even completely realize just how much more beautiful the world is, just because they're in it, until they're gone. Ian, a young man (just 18 years old) of Chapel Hill was just one of those people. Of course, I knew it the moment he said he was a huge Jack Johnson fan as well as aspiring artist and writer.

Yesterday morning, the uber-teen and the uber-boyfriend (who was Ian's college roommate) received word from Ian's mother that he was gone from us, and the world is less beautiful today than it was the day before.

Unable to express much more than general information, she suggested we google for more information, hung up and continued to work her way down the long list of people Ian called "friend". I can only imagine the anguish this very sweet lady and her husband endured the night before, and would like to ask you all to share some prayers for them in the upcoming days and weeks (months even).

It was not too long ago that you all said more than a few prayers on my behalf, and I can't tell you just how much it meant to me or just how much your prayers helped me through. Let's just say that I am now a firm believer that this is the greatest gift one could possibly give another, and so many of you are why I am firmly in that camp. I heard them, saw them, and very much felt the peaceful result when I most needed it.

So, if so inspired, please send some love their way as well.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Blogger Excuse 101

I have been blogging since the summer of 2005 and so far I have managed to come up with some very original lame blogger excuses (that all hold at least an ounce of truth), in my opinion. I've snapped and transformed an evil Murray Mower into a 4-wheeler and torn up my entire yard, been attacked by malicious log dwelling bees, was assaulted by a killer tiller, fallen down mountains (OK, hills) hiking in the woods, vacationing on the beaches of Florida in my head, on VRWC spy missions, digging 6x8 mud holes in my front yard for froggy pron, and was even once kidnapped by a band of wild-eyed baptists (that was really scary). I really have been taking more and more time away to write other things, though (just so you know). That one was no lame excuse. Oh hey, maybe I should write a book of lame excuses?!

No, no! No more bright ideas that make me have to work.

So anyhow, in keeping with good tradition here at PJ Maximum, I have another lame blogger excuse. Perhaps the best ever!

So, there I was, no s**t, just sitting by the pretty pond enjoying a real girly moment when I decided I should move to the mountains of West Virginia, become a mountain mamma and find mahself a mountain man. Yeah, baby!

Uh-huh. Just like that.

Seriously. I moved further and further away from the area as a young adult and have spent the latest years moving closer (little by little), until I'm almost, but not quite, back there.

Ironic, isn't it?

It's one of those old tales of chasing dreams and following whatever path life lays before those itchy feet, just to realize that everything one could possibly want was right there the entire time. (Expect to be treated to fantastic photographic displays at some point in the future, because the entire state is quite an eye-catching subject.) Those of you who have been reading awhile will remember my writing a bit about much missed friends and photos of the Wild and Wonderful West Virginia already, so I won't force you all down memory lane again, this time.

Soon enough, you will not be able to escape so easily! From the lovely southern states of South Carolina, North Carolina and Florida.... < insert deep breath here > ....to the colorful horizons of Kansas to the "Unbridled Spirit" of Kentucky (and all those many states in between), what I've seen of the United States has been awesome. However, only that breathtaking mountain view makes me so teary that I can only barely drive upon first glance after having been away for some time. So, yeah, it's simply time to go home.

Suffice to say, while it is only a two hour drive and will not take place until the spring (at the earliest), it is a very big deal for me (after digging all those mud holes out here in the sticks, mountain living will be quite an adjustment), and I'm thinking I'll be having lots to do between now and then. Especially with a new business venture in the mix. (It may very well take 6 months to just pack the cats! They've sure collected plenty of cat nip, toys, and other furry pals along the way.)

So finally, it's not with a completely unhappy heart that I have to say that blogging will have to take a backseat to these things (and after I've just announced that I will be blogging more often too). Just how much of a backseat remains to be seen, but I'll do my very best to keep up with you blogger buds as I have the time. (Just e-mail me already when tired of waiting!)

You guys will be holding down the Blog Fort without my incessant rambling and railing, once again. I feel a little guilty for being in and out so much this past year or so because you all just continue to do such an awesome job of keeping our wayward and bleating politicians in line (as much as is possible anyhow). And "I'm" slacking, again.

So, I must say, in highlighting the great injustices and most importantly keeping the memory of U.S. Service members around the world to the forefront -- honorable and true, as they so greatly deserve -- blogging with you all has been one of the most enjoyable tasks I've undertaken to date (even though I only began because the witty Frank J. once made an entire post of my verbose comment, gave my ego a boost, and I thought if The Doc and The CUG could do it, anybody could). *g*

It's also a task that I hope to have time to undertake quite regularly again, at some point in the future.

Wow, that's sounds lots like "goodbye" and it's not, honest! Look for weekly weekend posts at the very least. ;)

That is all.

Hope you all have a most fabulous Friday!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

The News at a Glance

First up- Gaza Christians warned to submit to Islam

Gaza-based Muslim groups affiliated with Hamas and possibly Al Qaeda have warned local Christians that Hamas' military conquest of the volatile coastal strip means they must now fully submit to Islamic ritual law."

“Missionary activity” will no longer be tolerated, and those suspected of trying to convert local Muslims to Christianity will be “harshly punished,” said Abu Saqer. Additionally, the consumption of alcohol is now prohibited in Gaza, and all women must fully cover themselves in public.

In order to ensure compliance with these regulations, Abu Saqer announced the formation of a new “military wing” that will [keep] a close eye on the subjects of “Hamastan.”"

Women have to dress in this manner and no booze is allowed?

Wow. It is amazing that the birth rates in these areas are what they are.

Next up-
Read The Sunspots (Now Prepare Yourselves For Dangerous Global Cooling!)

Politicians and environmentalists these days convey the impression that climate-change research is an exceptionally dull field with little left to discover. We are assured by everyone from David Suzuki to Al Gore to Prime Minister Stephen Harper that "the science is settled." At the recent G8 summit, German Chancellor Angela Merkel even attempted to convince world leaders to play God by restricting carbon-dioxide emissions to a level that would magically limit the rise in world temperatures to 2C.

Golly. I just took a little time off to plant flowers and take pretty pictures, and now it's global cooling?? Had I only known, I'd have skipped the pond design and gone with an igloo instead.

The real deal (from the perspective of an uber-conservative, of course)-

Politicians and environmentalists don't really know what they're talking about, nor do they desire to. That's not what this is about at all.

The socialist/communist era has died a slow death and those same socialist/communistic minded people are now moving into environmentalism to achieve the same goals, only this time with the peoples support, under the guise of saving the world from snowflakes and sun rays.

But hey, that's just my take.

Moving on...
Muslims Won't Fund Footbaths
Muslim leaders in Metro Detroit have decided not to raise private money to pay for two footbaths at a local college campus now that the American Civil Liberties Union has said the plan doesn't pose constitutional problems.

The University of Michigan-Dearborn's plan to spend $25,000 on the footbaths was criticized on conservative blogs and radio shows this month. Critics said using public money for the project would violate the First Amendment, which says governments can't favor or subsidize religions.

Kary Moss, director of the Detroit branch of the ACLU, said its review concluded the plan is a "reasonable accommodation" to resolve "safety and cleanliness issues" that arose when Muslims used public sinks for foot cleaning before prayers, which often spilled water on bathroom floors.

"We view it as an attempt to deal with a problem, not an attempt to make it easier for Muslims to pray," said Moss, who likened the plan to paying for added police during religious events with huge turnouts.

"There's no intent to promote religion."

I think what UM-Dearborn really needs is a real Christian revival (and some baptising of folks in drinking fountains. Not just to see what accomodations are allotted, but yes, that too).

I, as a Christian, really shouldn't be using this to deliberately provoke them though, because that would be an unloving response. I know. It's so very tempting, but, sorry. I don't make the rules.

In any case, I really do think we need to seriously test these waters. Where does it all end?

That's it. We should create a smoker's ritual or something to that effect (I get to be Grand Smokey Poo-bah because I thought of it)! Let's just see how accommodating they are then. And, if you don't smoke, it's still OK to join, I want to be inclusive (because I'm so schweet like that). Just so long as you promise to always follow me around holding a lighter up just in case I need fire, it'll all be good.

In no time flat we will be given "reasonable accommodation" to resolve "safety and cleanliness issues" that arise when blowing smoke into other's faces and throwing flaming worship tools onto the floor and into trash cans.


Friday, June 22, 2007

Hello World, It's Me Again

I'm just about to jump back into blogging again (yeah, baby!), but thought I'd just take a moment to say hi and ask how the heck you all are first.

That, and take a little scroll around the blogosphere, just to see what you've all been up to (and of course see what in the world is going on now).

So, hey there. How the heck are ya? ;)

Update- Stumbled upon a couple must reads- Adopt-a-Marine (thanks again, Kate) and Lone Survivor (thanks be to Linda).

You guys rock! :)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

It All Began With a Pond in a Box

Some of you have requested a post and since all I have to offer is a personal update, that's what you get!

Just remember, you asked for it... ;)

Three years ago, when first moving into my "fixer upper" home, I was full of energy and had all kinds of "big" ideas about what my home was to eventually become. It all started with a pond in a box, which I just happened to see on sale (only 75 bucks!) at the local Walmart. It came with a CD and promised to be as easy as 1 2 3. Yeah, right.

The liner was too small, resulting in a mud hole (for the purpose of froggy pron) in my yard and by the time my second spring here rolled around, I was too busy with other things to fool with the huge mud hole. By spring number three, I'd decided to win at any cost, and cost me it did. After purchasing a very large top of the line PVC liner, top of the line pond pump, and all sorts of expensive accessories, the pond finally looked like a real pond. So pretty! But, apparently I failed to elevate the liner high enough so the mud and mulch eventually made way back into the pond (which is now greenish black) again. Whoever said "3 is a charm" doesn't know me.

So this spring, I am starting all over. Again. Rawrr, I will win this one! I'm also building a water garden wall from either stone or treated lattice. Haven't yet decided. I'd love to go with stone but waiting to see just how nuts the pond makes me. If a meltdown is experienced, I will just add the much simpler treated lattice like that Lowe's employee person (whatever his title) kindly suggested (read: begged- I think he's tired of dealing with my "projects" but has no idea it's been the same danged one for three years). So far I've just put in the support wire and posts, and here is where I am so far. I'll be sure to do an "after" photo in a few weeks as well. Maybe. *g*

I'm also working on my own digital art/photo gallery online as well as providing illustrations for an up and coming website featuring children's literature (my mom's project). Sounds fun! OK, lots of work, but still fun. Here's a sneak preview of what will soon be my site.

Another very exciting development in uber-land involved the uber-teen and a prom. She looked so beautiful and grown up, I actually cried. So hard to believe she will be seventeen years old this June!

Hope she doesn't mind my posting her mug on my blog!

To be fair, I submit a photo of yours truly. Pushing lip gloss into the back seat and onto the uber-teen like a drug dealer while waiting on my mom to bring me the promised coffee (and lots of it) because she made me go exotic plant shopping at an ungodly hour (OK, I overslept, but only because it was way too early). I had to take the hair brush with me even. The horror... (The uber-teen claims she was taking photos to better document the abuse but I'm convinced it was really to document the gray hair I haven't had time to color lately). Ah, there's not much that lip gloss and lots of coffee can't fix. I did find some cool plants that are always sold out by the time I wake up, much less arrive (but sshhh, we shall never admit this to my mother).

Another grand event in uber-land was Franki's becoming a mom. I'd decided to not let her have kittens (because there are so many homeless kitties out there already) but a friend and his wife are crazy about her (and I can't let them have her because I've become way too attached) so they finally talked me into at least allowing her to reproduce just so they could have one of her kittens. She had three. The Crazy Precious One is Franki's sister and while Franki is a very sane and calm kitty, I do believe the kittens may have received that evil/crazy gene.

As if one blue eye and one green were not crazy enough, he's got the whole scary "I vant tu eat your camera lenz!" look going on. (This particular kitten is the friends pick, by the way. I wish them luck. Bwahaha..)

This fellow even sleeps evil. Familiar, no?

And don't let Franki's little baby girl's sweet and innocent face fool you. Check out those claws (you just know she's just yearning to sink into some one's toes)!

A new photo of the proud mom- caught drinking from the kitchen sink faucet (again).

Friday, April 06, 2007

The Week In Photos

Since I've been lame and really have no post prepared, thought I'd share some moments of my wears a cape super-exciting life this past week via photos. Yay!

This is Inky, who I met and shared my milkshake with at the park. The uber-teen's friend, who is visiting from Ft. Knox this week, named him Inky and the uber-teen tried to bring him home with us. Tempting, but Inky seemed too healthy and friendly to be a stray. I'm guessing he has a very good family in one of the many homes nearby and just visits the park to flirt with women who have milkshakes. I thought that was a fine trade because Inky kept me company while the uber-teen and her guest took a hike. I'm almost all better but still a little too under the weather for all that.

Every time a mother with a small child walked by they took one look at him and hissed, "Rabies!!! Don't touch that cat!", which made him jump right into my lap, under their evil eye, for some more lovin'. He'd give me the "Help, that crazy lady is scaring me!" look, the children would give their mothers that, "But, but... she's petting him!" look, and the mothers gave me that "Great, thanks...thanks a whole lot." look. I don't know exactly why but I found it pretty funny, every single time.

Yeah, I drove by later that evening to see if he was still hanging out there at the park, just in case he was homeless, but he was long gone. :(

My mom brought Fox by for a visit, he's sweet as ever. I can't help taking closeups of him, his little nose is so cute!

Here, I'd just caught Luna rolling in the mud right after her bath. She was so sorry that she promptly tried to eat my pretty white shoe, while I was wearing it! She made up for it last night in saving my life by viciously attacking the bags I'd placed over my Japanese Maples to protect them from the frost. Silly puppy. *g*

Last but not least, Mr. Frog came a courtin' and he did ride, uh-huh. Only he rode my neighbor's shoe (and uh, sorta got all excited and humped his foot). Ha!

This concludes The Week In Photos. Yes, my life is that boring. Well, I have been taking lots more photos but my latest project is putting together a church directory and though some did turn out very funny, I'm pretty sure they don't want their corny photos posted on my blog. In any case, I wouldn't dare. (No way would I ever risk losing access to those fabulous Baptist meals!)

Hope everyone has a joyful Easter weekend!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Oh No He Didn't!

Oh yeah, he absolutely did.

Someone finally came right out and told, the truth. < insert gasps here >

"Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of UN Watch, delivered a scorching speech before the UN Human Rights Council 4th Session, accusing the body of blatant hypocrisy in ignoring gross rights violations worldwide except when committed by Israel."

But of course, to lend even more credence to his words (much like the oh so violent murdering Islamic nut jobs running around murdering innocent people like the nut jobs that they are in reaction to the suggestion that they are violent murderers...Oo)...

"The speech was then repudiated by the Council Chairman, who refused to thank Neuer as is customary and then threatened to strike from the record similar statements in the future."

Read more: UN Watchdog censured after accusing Human Rights Council of hypocrisy.

Better yet, watch the video documenting the hypocrisy in the face of truth.

OK, this was just too rich to not take the time to post. Back to my regularly scheduled "I'm in spring cleaning/home improvement/standardized testing/flu bug or something worse/company arriving soon hell." The company arriving soon part is not hell though, I actually like that part.

Regular posting will resume again shortly! Hope you're all able to hang in there without me for just a little longer (I know it's been most difficult). ;)

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Rainy Sunday Cat/Dawg Bloggin'

I don't know what you do on a boring and rainy Sunday afternoon, but I empty the contents of my closet, photograph it then post it on my blog.

Doing a bit of spring cleaning here, putting the winter stuff away and breaking out the spring stuff (so I can sit around shivering when it snows in March) and you know how cats love large piles of clothing and blankets. Precious just had to have a piece of that action. I'm also puppy-sitting for my mom so Fox is here to jump around and amuse.

It would seem that he has a huge crush on Precious (who is comprised of fur and pure evil).

It would would also seem that Precious doesn't hate Fox as much as one would expect a ball of fur containing pure evil to hate a slobbering cute puppy. OK, so I'm not exactly seeing the love and longing on her face above, but it's not pure evil hatred either.

As she stole Fox's puppy treat and fled the scene (while the dummy was wooing a cat no less), Luna could not be reached for comment.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Book Update

First, I miss blogging! No, I really miss you guys! I know, I'm still blogging a little here and there and I'm still visiting your blogs at least once a week but it's just not the same. Putting the blogging aside, even if not completely, has been difficult. Each and every day I am tempted. Each and every day I tell myself to just shut up and write. But just so you know, you're all constantly in my thoughts (and prayers too), even when it may not seem like I'm engaged. :)

So, on with the point. The writing of the book.

This is easier than I thought it would be and harder than I thought it would be, all at the same time. It's easier in the way that I'm finding the massive amounts of research to be much more enjoyable than I ever thought I could and harder in the way that I seem almost incapable of picking up general information in my research then move on. We're getting caught up in the process and not actually writing as much as we'd like. Some of the research is just too fascinating to look away.

We're taking certain beliefs and concepts from the very beginning of recorded history to present as well as dipping into the unknown (future) and trying to make them work in harmony together. Imagine trying to combine the ancient with sci-fi. It's a good thing this is fiction because this give us lots of room to move, but it's important (to me) to portray these concepts and beliefs as accurately as possible even if it is a work of fiction and even if there are no concrete answers. (Sounds like liberal gobbledygook, huh? Ha!) So this means research, research, and research some more (to the uber-teen's distress). I'm pretty sure she'd just grab some general info and move on, and maybe she's right. I win though, not because I'm bigger (because I'm not) but because I'm the boss. Bwahaha!

So far, we've come to two major conclusions. If this book is not "wears a cape super-good", it will not be due to a "bad idea" or lack of creativity but because I've not written it well (I'll take full blame since I'm the boss). We've also come to understand why you hear so many stories about the egotistical writer who views their work as "their baby", refusing to believe there are any flaws much less that it's crap. I hope we do well from beginning to end but sure hope we're able to accept it if told there are flaws. We won't consider being told that it's crap because that's just loser talk!

Anyhow, I promised an update so here it is. For anyone interested, my next research topic will be the fascinating topic of dimensions. More specifically, why 10 dimensions?

Be teased!

Now be fair, drop me a comment and tell me what you've all been up to lately (or drop a link if I've missed a blog post or major event in all my lameness).

Friday, February 16, 2007

Puppy Update

First of all, hooray it's Friday! I don't know about you, but this is when I stop worrying. About work, laundry, what I eat, who is calling and why and what I eat. *g* By the end of the weekend I will have consumed every unhealthy food and beverage I can imagine, the laundry will reach the ceiling, my answering machine will be full of complaints and work will be all backed up. No wonder I hate Monday, huh?

Anyhow, I have new puppy photos! Today, we went to the veterinarian and got checked out (there was much crying). All of the pups were given a clean bill of health (there was much rejoicing) and are 7 weeks old so next week will be all about finding homes for these guys (more crying). I'll be spending as much time with them as possible this weekend so hoping for nice weather here, they love to run and play outside. I'll be snapping some more photos too because this will not only help in finding homes but also likely be the last I'm able to take. :(

On a happier note, I've become attached to one pup in particular (other than little Luna, who I've already decided to keep).

Meet Fox. Fox Mulder, heh.

How cute is he?! Yeah, I know better than to get attached to an animal that I know I'm not going to be able to keep forever and naming him makes it even harder. But he's always stretching his neck trying so hard to see exactly what is on the other side of that box that it inspired me to constantly whisper to him, "The truth is out there..." which of course is how he eventually came to be named Fox. Fox Mulder.

The good news is that my mom came by to pick up her pup today and fell in love with Fox as well and decided to take him instead. So I still get to see him! The pup she originally chose is adorable but not right for her anyhow. My parents like to travel, hike, go to parks, take long walks and things like that. Her original choice is a very sweet pick but just crawls into the nearest lap, shivering and looking extremely worried. Always. She'll give someone lots of love and cuddles, making an excellent companion but sure doesn't seem like much of an adventurous dog.

Here she is, worried as usual, wanting cuddled. So precious...

Here Fox is again (right), with his "almost" twin (left). I'd love to name the other Dana Scully and insist my mother keep them both but it's a boy as well and she's already slightly annoyed that she has to yell "Fox! Fox Mulder!" every time she wants her dog to come to her because he already knows his name. I shouldn't push my luck here.

I'm having trouble catching this next fella awake! He plays hard and crashes harder.

And, unable to catch this cutie being still. I've more photos of him than all the rest, every single one blurry. He's very animated.

The following is another bonus photo, from way back when they were still so tiny.

Seems like just yesterday...


Maybe I should go look at the mess they made tearing a stuffed Easter Bunny into a million pieces earlier today.

Or maybe I should just go watch a movie and eat my weight in chocolate! Mmmm.

Hope everyone has a terrific weekend. :)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's!

Valentine's Day is all about celebrating all manner of love, in my opinion. Remember, while most focus on the romantic aspects, there are many different kinds of love.

Just to name a few...

Friendship Love

Puppy Love

Pet Love (Thanks to the uber-teen for the use of her art and photography here)

The Greatest Love Ever Known

Sweet Sisterly Love

Strange Monkey Love (Thanks to Linda for the cuddly love monkey. Mwah!)

Last, but certainly not least-

Bloggy Love!

Hope everyone enjoys the day, romantic or not. ;)

Friday, February 09, 2007

Valentine's Countdown Cat Bloggin'

Only a little over four days left until Valentines!

I've actually discovered a way to combine the Valentine's countdown and cat blogging.


With lots of help from You Tube, I bring you Otto. "Full of love with no place to put it", Otto "will give his love to perfect strangers".

(Don't try that line on dates.)

Stranger, indeed.

Hope everyone has a great weekend! :)

Q&A, Baby!

First, I'm going to ask you, oh wise bloggers, some random questions. Then, we'll get to your asking me stuff in the comments. Since it's almost Valentines, maybe we should go with the topic of men, women, and relationships.

On the other hand, random works too. :)

My Random Questions-

1. If you were considering participating in a charity event and read this --

Participants that submit art, will be getting individual credit for their art and the charitable contributions. Upon completion of this project, all the available art will be auctioned, and the profits from the auction will go to charities. However, this event is not a charity event, and there is not going to be a profit made from processing the art.

-- wouldn't you think it's likely some type of a scam?

2. With 5 days until Valentine's Day, should we begin "the countdown" here at PJ Max?

3. With my bloggy-time more restricted, what type of posts do you prefer to see when you visit PJ Max (personal, political, cat bloggy-goodness, random photography, art, mad mix, etc)?

4. At what point does a personal preference become a fetish?

(Shuddup, I told you these would be random.)

5. Can I put those anti-snoring nose strips on my dog (without harming her)?

6. Are most teens online really as incapable of correct grammar, spelling, and capitalization as they appear? (Does that person teasing others about their poor "grammer" ever stop being funny?)

7. What are men really thinking about when they go all quiet?

Ok, there you have it, folks. Give me some answers, ask some questions, and come back later today for the next installment of Cat Blogging (yay!)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Doggy Bloggin'

Today, we have more puppy photos, in celebration of the opening of the puppy eyes.

Above, is the puppy that was found a home within the first hours of her life. My parents will be taking her home with them when she is old enough so I'm positive she'll enjoy some massive spoiling. My parents have not had a dog since their little dog, Baby, passed away. My mother has called almost every day since her birth to ask what she's doing now. It goes something like "Um, now she's sleeping." "Oh, she's just eating." "Errr...sleeping again...stop calling me!" My dad emails and sends text messages repeatedly to ask what the puppy is doing now but I'm positive he's just mocking. This is a really big deal to my mom.

Baby came along shortly after I left home and filled the great void left in their lives (due to my own absence, I'm sure). As a matter of fact, I remember that first trip home and my meeting her like it was just yesterday. My brother had arrived before me for the same reason he visited more often than myself (to make me look bad), and was all too happy to introduce me to Baby. On the edge of his seat with childlike anticipation he kept offering to help me carry my bags to my room until curiosity got the best of me. Once in the doorway of my old room, before I could even take it all in, he announced with glee from behind, "They totally gave your room to their new dog...named Baby! Hahaha!"

Hahaha, indeed.

Gone was my little bed, along with matching vanity, bookshelf and anything else a cute little mongrel..er...puppy, might chew (which is pretty much everything). All of my things had been stored and replaced with a little puppy bed, the floor littered with newspaper and a mountain of puppy toys. There she sat, in the middle of my room, in all her cuteness. She even had my dark curly hair! Humph. I might have been replaced but I suggested I get my brother's room during that visit (as well as all future visits) because girls need their privacy.

He got the couch. Bwahaha!

Anyhow, they were so sad when Baby passed away that it has taken them all this time to even consider raising another puppy. The little pup above will have a terrific life with the two of them.

Next up -

This pretty puppy will stay with me. Forever. Naturally, they'll all stay with me until I've found good homes for them (and if I don't, then I'll just keep them), but I do want to keep one of Shadow's babies and she is my pick. Haven't found a name for her just yet though.

And for the rest -

The little golden fellow in the middle (the runt) is growling and barking at me already. He's certainly an interesting character. I never did get a photo of the sixth puppy. Shadow didn't seem irritated or anxious or anything, she just kindly took the last one from me and put it back in the box. That's so adorable, what do you say? "Alrighty then, no more photos!" That's what. I did snap a quicky bonus photo while she was looking the other way. ;)

That's all folks (until next week). Have a fabulous weekend!