Archive | April, 2013

Quirky Quotes and Tangled Tales

23 Apr

“It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.”

Douglas Adams

Well maybe not any major problems, but surely a plethora of minor ones. Although there was that famine…

Potatoes, though not a perfect combination of the three major food groups (fat, flour, and sugar) like donuts, are pretty damned awesome.

There are an abundance of serving suggestions available for potatoes:






Au Gratined

French Fried


Hash Browned

Twice Baked

With Peel

Without Peel




Potato Cakes


Potato Salad


All you really need is butter, salt, and pepper. But add some bacon or ham, onions, peppers, cheese, squash, cabbage…and the variations are endless.


Serve them warm and creamy to a recalcitrant male child and you might just solve a big problem.

A full belly of warm potato-y goodness has been known to render unto the eater/victim loose lips, resulting in the dissemination of information otherwise guarded. Now wouldn’t every mother benefit from that?

Yes, potatoes are a miracle. You can grow a vine in a jar of water. You can pluck its eye, throw that eye in the dirt, and soon potatoes will manifest.

Got a potato? Got dinner!

Got a potato? You can dress him up as a little man and amuse yourself.

Got a potato? You can make a stamp. You can’t use it unless you have ink, but still there’s real potential here.

This is tangled. It’s a tale of BS, uh potatoes.

Tangled Tale Tuesday?

Perhaps it will catch on.

Manic Monday II

22 Apr

Mondays have certainly turned manic.

So have the last 10 days.

Bruhonda got new shoes among other things.

Falon now has 3 veggie beds and several pots in her urban garden, as well as numerous pots of impatiens and two coleus’.

We have zinnias, a few veggies, several new perennials, and a pot of mixed petunias.

The bunnies are now housed outside in a palatial bunny condo.

The bunny condo almost did me in.

After 3 false starts early last week, we finally collected all the necessary supplies and tools and Saturday morning Falon and I set out to make the bunny move. With her help, I leveled the hutch, wired the space between the front legs to prevent bunny escape in that direction, dug trenches along both sides of the coop, planted chicken wire in the trenches, set the coop in place, pinned the wire to the ground, covered it all with dirt and grass, used metal hose clamps to attach the coop to the hutch, and added one play pen to the end of the coop for play time when she is with them.

Whew. I’m done.

Oh, but wait. I was busy all day Sunday. And then Zach called at dinner time with car problems. Since I didn’t hear from him, finally at 8 last night, I sat down and gave up so that I could watch Game of Thrones. That was the fastest hour of the week. Love that show.

As I prepared to lay my head upon my pillow, the phone rang. It was nearly eleven and Zach was stranded in close-to-the-worst-possible-part of town.

Operation Rescue Zach.

First I chewed him out for waiting until bedtime to start home with a wounded auto. Then I put my jeans back on, grabbed my bag and headed out the door.

Three hours later, the car had been towed to the mechanic we use, and I was finally home. Geez, it was only 1. A.M. That’s in the wee hours of the morning in case you didn’t catch that.

O M G. The alarm went off at 6. A. M. That is not enough snoozing for me. I require copious amounts of snoozing in order to function. I can snooze for days. A good snooze is the better than…cake! Well maybe not.

But I grabbed a shower, coffee, lunch, and a handful of road and made it to work.

Eighty three cups of coffee later, I got to come home.

I seriously think I fell asleep at my desk a couple of times.

So here I am, having completed my second manic Monday and still alive, if not so well, and breathing.

Bunco is Wednesday night.

There is a wedding on Saturday.

I’m taking this coming Sunday off. Just me and my Kindle and my snuggle buddy Peanut. Can’t wait.

Hint Fiction Friday #8

19 Apr

I drive down Crystal Valley Road this morning toward Stagecoach Road and I-430. It is 7:30 a.m. Rain storms blew through yesterday. Their passing leaves new intensity in the colors of the buds and blooms just peeking and peaking.  The early morning light suffuses the trees with an incredible, almost delicate, aura.  It enhances the greens, soothes the blacks, and adds dimension to the browns and grays.  The tulips reds sparkle with remnants of the rain and the last of the lavender hyacinths droop becomingly.

I might well enjoy this display of nature’s glorious color wheel but for half-mast eyelids at this ungodly hour of the morning.


Today’s Hint Fiction:

She rose slowly, the stranger’s arm supporting her efforts, her grazed hand held firmly in his, her scraped knees showing through jeans bloody and torn.

‘Thank you’, she said. ‘It seems my curb-inspired flying lesson has failed.’

It’s Friday!

I’m Back, Working, and Bunny Business

18 Apr

My poor laptop hasn’t even had power to it since Monday. It would have been lonely,   but I left enough clutter and 3 dogs with it while I went off to work and play.

Falon and I spent the past two nights attempting to make the bunny cage bunny proof. Last night we gave up. Well, not really. We just abandoned the project until I can collect a few bricks and a couple of tools and return on Saturday ready to tackle it again.

Who woulda thought that two cute little bunnies could cause so much trouble? It would be best not to ask Bob. He might suggest rabbit stew to end the dilemma.

Tomorrow is Friday! My first week is nearing its end. Work has been quiet and interesting.

I’ve missed my puppies. I’ve missed car time with Zach on the way to class. Mostly I’ve missed afternoon naps and my Tuesday and Wednesday posts.

It will get better and posts will continue.

“When a man tells you that he got rich through hard work, ask him: ‘Whose?”
Don Marquis

Manic Monday Number 1

15 Apr

Manic Monday

I believe I am experiencing pre-empty nest syndrome. The last one is still here, well at least he’s sleeping here and eating occasionally, but I’m not seeing much of him.

We are having a crisis.

I know he really needs to be out and about and doing things, experiencing life. Learning and living and finding his place in the world. I fear that I haven’t done such a hot job in getting him to that point.

Fall 2010 we dropped him off on campus of the local university happy to know he had a full scholarship including room and board. He had all the tools for successful degree completion.

That first year was okay. I still saw him occasionally. He would get tired of the dorm and pop in for a few days. He’d go back. I was good with it.

Fall 2011 he started slipping.

Spring 2012 he blew it all off. Dropped out, lost the scholarship, and came home.

To make a long story short, last year was not a good year for our family. Zach blew through three jobs. I blew through one.

I thought I would try to help by fronting the tuition for a couple of classes this Spring. I also offered to drop him on campus as long as I could.

The past week has been very difficult. He missed most of his classes. I saw this as a repetition of bad behavior. I got stressed over it. He’s defensive.

So…where am I now?

He’s an adult. He’s really excited about a new community project. He’s working on that. I started a new job this morning.

I’m not seeing much of him. I can only hope he makes it to class this week. It’s a bit too quiet around here right now. Bob has forbidden the friends and marathon computer game nights. The absence of Zach and friends makes the house rather lonely.

And therein lays the pre-empty nest syndrome.

Getting over it. Yes, I am. He’ll be okay.

It’ll be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it isn’t the end.

I started working again today. Feeling good about that.  Driving into the downtown area this morning presented a bit of a traffic challenge, but Bruhonda soared along, found a spot to park. We actually made it on time. Go me!

There is a great view of downtown from the reception area. Little Rock is a small city, pretty clean in the area around the Convention Center and the River Market. We’re only a few blocks from the Clinton Library.

I am amazed that certain neighborhoods in my city still have a special place in my heart despite becoming somewhat bedraggled with age. As a child my mom or dad would drive us home via Fair Park Boulevard. As you can guess Fair Park was situated along the street, the zoo, and a small theme park, and War Memorial Stadium where the Hogs play are among the attractions. My favorite part begins with the residential area. It’s a wide street, tree-lined, and shady. I always imagined it to be a very special place to live and I still love cruising between 12th Street and the University’s back side.

The downside today was brought to us in the news. The Boston Marathon bombings were a shock. I’m sure truths will out on this heinous act. Shame on the perpetrators. No act of violence is necessary or rational.  If a point must be made by the taking of lives, then something is inherently wrong with your point of view.

It is time for dinner and some reading. Oh and filing an extension on my tax return. I am so much a procrastinator.

Happy Tax Day. Would that be an oxymoron?

Hint Fiction Friday #7

12 Apr

This is my last Freedom Friday for some time. New job, new responsibilities, and an ongoing search for my life’s work will mean the demise of Friday Freedom. We bid it a fond farewell.

Reevaluation of goals and dreams is a real bitch. Those of us fortunate enough to hoard the bottom three percent of the world’s wealth find that the best laid plans of mice and men don’t often go awry, they always go awry. It’s becoming much easier to understand the depression epidemic. Geez, what a vicious circle.

 Hint Fiction Friday  #

Sarafina attempted to assess the damage to her heart. It still beat. The pain had actually settled just south of her diaphragm. Maybe it was acid reflux. Perhaps last night’s chili dog had been a mistake. Oops, it moved a little further north and then swooped down south again.

She decided to concentrate on her head.

There, lurking in the muck of brain matter, she found what she sought. She confronted her indecision.  She attempted to make peace with the need to remain resolved.

‘I’ve become an enabler,’ she thought.

Tears welled.

The pain bumped into her heart. It squeezed.  Fifteen years before her divorce had felt like this.   

‘It feels like loss and failure.’

Sarafina sighed, her head dropping to her chest, the tears sliding down checks red with misery.

 She heard the beep of a text message. She sat down and touched the screen. It lit. She read.

‘I love you Mom.’

The pain eased slightly.  

The argument hadn’t ended, but then neither had the lifetime of love.

Daily Update, Rude, Wealth, and the 3 Billion

11 Apr

This has been an emotional week. Grappling with one thing or another over the past months has left me with a mind muddled and a debilitating inertia. Sherri says my energy and desire to create will return. I hope so. I’m behind on my reading again. My apologies to all of you in my follow list. I will try to do better.

Speaking of Sherri, she’s a funny lady. Last week she performed at a comedy club in the Charlotte area and made me privy to the video. You can find it here. Please take a peak. Mexican Barbie appears with her.  A sound chuckle is good for the soul.

Falon and I discussed rude and unkind behavior last night. She’s constantly confronted with it in her practice with elementary kids. The behavioral issues are sometimes baffling. And yesterday as I was driving home from Tractor Supply with dog food and a lot on my mind, a truck cut me off in traffic. It was an older truck. I honked at the guy as he very nearly ran me off the road. He actually put his window down and flipped me off. I reacted as a real adult and did the same. He screamed at me, calling me a bitch, burned rubber, and eventually pulled over and waited by his mailbox to continue screaming at me. Again, I was most mature in my reaction.

He cut me off and endangered 3 vehicles including his own. Somehow I was in the wrong?

Falon said she was beginning to really appreciate the small kindnesses.  I find myself trying harder to be cheerful and kind when I shop or eat out or roam about.

Since she travels more, I asked her if she encountered this rude behavior elsewhere in the world. It would seem so.

My first inclination was to blame the political/social/economic climate in this country. It has become toxic in so many ways. But then if people everywhere exhibit bad behavior it must be an epidemic. Historically I imagine humans have always been self-centered, manipulative, and rude. Too bad isn’t it?

Just trying to find a way to protect ourselves from the hurt and disappointment I suppose. Maybe that’s why religion is so popular. Maybe it’s just a way to ease the pain of living. Too bad those who seek that path are so inclined to share it with the rest of us.

I’m sounding rather fatalistic today.

I just watched this informative video for the 3rd or 4th time, The most astonishing and attention grabbing revelation was that the richest 300 people in the world hold more wealth than the bottom rung 3 Billion people. Right now the odds are stacked rather substantially against your being comfortably housed, clothed, and fed, let alone having accessible and reliable health care.

I still want to know how those 300 people are going to take their wealth into death. No one gets out of this alive. You would think we would all pitch in and try to make it a little easier on each other.

I can only hope to live to see it, a phenomenal transformation in humanity.


Low Carb Daily Update #4
My stress level is impacting my blood glucose levels, but they are still much better sans carbs.
My belly isn’t as distended as usual. I’ve been more comfortable in my skin. Need to go to the grocer for a few things…sugar free jello cups would help. More of the Atkins frozen dinners as well. And I need some sort of cracker. I’ve allowed myself a single serving of Kashi pita crisps with my cheese. It’s about half my carb limit.  I really enjoy a cracker with cheese. Research is required. Perhaps this chronicle will keep me honest.

Wonders and Weirds

9 Apr

Having spent Monday low carb, I woke this morning with a fasting blood sugar well within normal parameters, although perhaps not as low as some of the docs would like.

It works. Now I must press on.

Today has been an emotional one. There is my ongoing inability to stop worrying. There is a new job to consider for Monday morning. There was a drug test today. There is little Angel, who will be leaving us this weekend.

Angel needs a bit of home training and we aren’t going to be in enough to take care of her. One of Bob’s co-workers had wanted her as well. Thanks Candy. She’s a cutie and I know she and Bella and the two cats will love her.

So today I’ve been to Pine Bluff, the airport, dinner with Falon, shopped for a few minutes, and finally found my way home.

I can hear the call of my Kindle, asking me to watch a bit of True Blood or read the latest piece of fiction.

Surely the best escape for a brain that is somewhat overloaded with the sad state of the country.

I discovered today that the Wal-Mart model of employee relations is alive and well and living all over the place. What happened to taking care of your employees so they would take care of you? That 1% must be planning to take all that cash they are stashing in the Caymans with them when they die. That has to be why they are hanging on to it with a two-fisted grip. My respect for Costco is growing.
Our education system sucks.  Our kids are not getting what they need. They are being taught to test. Period. We have lost the ability to guide our children and treat them as individuals. Not all of us are college material. Not all of us are mechanical. We don’t guide our children in their life choices. We just test the hell out of them.

Gun control is being pushed aside by Republicans. Asa Hutchison from my beautiful state has rolled out a report calling for armed guards in schools, a report paid for by the NRA with about as much credibility as the report my Lab wrote. In fact I think hers was better. She called for watchdogs trained to sniff out assault weapons and crazy folks. I believe she may be onto something. I’m sure those dogs would find a whole host of crazies in the Capitol. I’m also sure that our children would be safer with the dogs.

And then there was the Jonesboro man who cited the addition of armed guards in those schools and wrote that yes indeedy more guns in school are just what we need.

Where is the sanity? Why do the folks running the country appear to have firmly planted their heads up their asses? I wonder how long the sane among us will have to wait for the loud collective POP when all those heads come out?

I’m going to look for my peaceful place. I think I left it at the barn.

Weekend Gardening, Carbs, and Stinky

8 Apr

We like to putter around outside weekends when weather permits. This past weekend we did do a few things in spite of the soggy, swampy yard we now possess. The island garden is freshly mulched. The raised bed garden is on its way to clean paths and new perennials. Chico’s garden is looking much better after a bit of weeding.  And so it will go until the weather changes and the heat sends us to the pool or the AC.

Busy, busy. In preparation for beginning a new job, I must schedule an oil change and a couple of tires for Bruhonda. Can’t wait to clear the checking account for that one!

Oh…yes I finally have gainful employment…if I pass the drug test. I hope it isn’t too complicated. I hate tests. And thanks to Susan! She told me about the job.

Sarah gave me a glowing recommendation. I had to pay her for it. Just kidding! So I must say thanks to Sarah as well. She’s my almost big sis……

This morning I started counting carbs again. I’m a carb addict. It’s been 3 hours since my last carb.

My blood work was awful. I’m a stroke waiting to happen, so weight has to go down, carbs have to go, and have to walk at lunch once I start the new job. Ewww. Walk? Next thing you know I’ll be doing competitive something or other. Nah…not gonna happen. Washing Bru this afternoon whooped my fat…uh energy and left me quivering for a piece of bread.  And a painkiller.

Step away from the bread box.

That’s my new mantra.

The next couple of weeks I’m trying to really cut back, lose a few pounds, and break the cravings. Oh yeah baby. Thank goodness for Atkins bars and shakes. Quick and easy for those days when quick and easy is the only way.

After that I’ll add a few things back in until I have steady weight loss.  Blood sugar and cholesterol have to go down!

Lose the weight, get my blood work in line, and keep my mental acuity, or at least get some mental acuity, and I will no doubt live to a ripe old age.

Speaking of ripe, what’s the deal with not wearing deodorant? Is this like a new trend or something? I know natural is great, but isn’t there a natural deodorant?  I really don’t like the smell of unwashed and un-deodorized body…especially boy.  Stinky boy is the worst! That and school.

I know you know the scent of school. My niece and my kids would come home from elementary school smelling bearing that scent and totally unaware. It is as identifiable as the scent of lavender or a rose or body odor. Perhaps we should bottle it for old folks who like to reminisce. There’s my first million!

So I took a moment to look up this trend. One woman uses lemon slices for her pit odor. I found a site with recipes for homemade, natural ingredient deodorant. I found folks that just make sure they shower daily and wear deodorant only on special occasions, like weddings.

Then there were articles on the deodorant rock called an Alum Stone and the Moroccan clay, Rhassoul clay, for washing using very little water.

Oh my.

Controlling the odor is apparently still acceptable. Thank goodness.

I was in deep despair over the possibility of stinky persons all over the place. I like natural, don’t get me wrong. I love the smell of honeysuckle. I even like the smell of dirt…as long as it’s clean dirt.  But the idea of stinky bacteria growing in the pits just turns me off completely.

I guess my hippie tendencies have a limit after all.

Hint Fiction Friday

5 Apr

I can’t imagine having a day much less productive than this one. I did clear away junk mail and tidy my desk in preparation for the dreaded tax deadline. I just hope we break even! I’m really hoping that one day the tax returns just do themselves or the laws are changed to make it super simple. Perhaps we just need to eliminate income tax and go for a federal sales tax with exemptions on food, medicine, and other necessities. It seems it might actually be fair to everybody. I would welcome feedback on that issue. Any experts out there have an opinion?

It’s that time of the week when short fiction takes its place in thepolkadot exercises in writing.

This one is dedicated to the first item on the Bucket List, Rumania:

He smiled, languidly dabbing his mouth. ‘Throat-baring 101’, he whispered. ‘Don’t offer unless you mean it.’ His arm relaxed and she fell limply to the ground.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend. I’m going to try focusing my thoughts on a sexy, long-toothed, tuxedo-wearing, tall, dark, and handsome fantasy. Perhaps the house cleaning, shopping, and miscellaneous chores won’t be quite so boring.


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