Again with the inspiration!

VeryInspiringBlogAwardSeveral days ago, I was nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award by the lovely and talented Katrina Jack.  This isn’t the first time I’ve been nominated for this particular award (you can read those posts here and here, and a list of my other blog award posts is here), but I’m just as flattered now as I was then. 🙂

I’m sure you all know how these things work – you thank your nominator, you share seven things about yourself, you nominate others.  I thanked Kate for the nomination in her post, but I’d like to give her another shout-out: There’s a list of books on Goodreads that are Hugo-eligible this year, and Kate’s book Land of Midnight Days is currently at number 6.  It’d be great if you’d hop over and vote for her – she’s a wonderful author and a fantastic friend, and she deserves all the recognition she can get. 🙂

And now, without further ado, the rest of it:

1.  In just over three weeks, I will be the same age my mom was when she died.  As my 31st birthday draws nearer, I find myself becoming more morbid.  This, of course, is a continuing trend, because my 30th year has been rather morbid in and of itself.  And come this time next year, I plan to have one hell of a party, assuming I survive 2015.

2.  My new favorite song is…

Photo 365 #29

I spent a good half hour or so tonight walking up and down my road trying to get a good enough signal on my phone to upload a picture (more on why tomorrow, with any luck). Our internet is down and I was too impatient to just wait till tomorrow.

Naturally, then, my phone failed to cooperate. I finally got four (out of five) bars and it still wasn’t good enough.

I know – totally a first-world problem.

But, lucky me, my little walk wasn’t a total loss. It’s been raining off and on all day, so there’ve been plenty of clouds, and they make the most brilliant sunsets. I managed to get this picture on the way back home, as thunder rumbled to the south and the breeze filled my ears with the song of crickets and the scent of growing things filled my nose:


It was a calming walk. I should do more of that.

I should also wear proper shoes next time I venture out on my own. Slippers just aren’t meant for gravel travel.

(c) 2014. All rights reserved.

Tornado monsoon

June 29

2014-06-29 10.16.03I went upstairs to put the boys to bed a little after 8:00 p.m. and the sky was dark.  Like middle-of-the-night dark.  Given that it’s been staying light till somewhere around 9:00 p.m. lately, this was odd.  But it had been raining, so I didn’t worry too much about it.  I had just started reading Fox in Socks when the emergency alert went off on my phone – a tornado warning had just been issued.  I hollered down to Seymour to find out what was going on and he said he’d check the radar, so I went back to reading.  A couple minutes later, Bubbles thundered up the stairs and said we were supposed to head down to the basement.

After yesterday’s monsoon, we woke up to find our basement submerged beneath three inches of water.  We managed to drain it eventually, thanks to our cousins – they came to Cricket’s birthday party this afternoon packing a pump.  The basement is once more flooded in places, but that’s fodder for another post.

I may even write it one day.

2014-06-29 21.57.54 Anyway, the boys were happy…

Oh, the weather outside is frightful…

…It doesn’t show signs of stopping…

This week was full of weather, among other things.  From the much-discussed polar vortex to today’s (tonight’s) ice storm, it’s been a frosty week.

Don’t believe me?  Here’s the proof:

And, joy of joys, we’re supposed to get two inches of snow on top of all the ice.  And I have to brave the weather tomorrow so that someone can come and look at my house.  Here’s hoping they put in a reasonable offer.

(c) 2014.  All rights reserved.


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Tuesday already?

Hi, everybody! Thank you all for stopping by. I know it’s been a bit quiet here lately and unfortunately, I think that trend may continue for a while longer. Between the upcoming holiday, my impending camping trips, the new job, recovering from Saturday’s successful garage sale, and something else that I’m not quite ready to discuss in detail (though I did vaguely mention it on Twitter yesterday), I’ve got a lot on my plate at the moment and something’s gotta give. Sadly, I think my writing is it.

So, I’ll try to pop in here as often as I can. I’ll try to do the same for Facebook, even though I know my presence there lately probably isn’t what it ought to be. And Twitter? I’m still searching for a mobile app to replace my beloved Tweetdeck. If anyone has any suggestions for apps they love, I’m all ears (though for the record, I’ve tried HootSuite and I just don’t like it as well). Let me know in the comments! Maybe then I’ll at least be able to keep up there.

Until next time, folks, have a happy Fourth and stay safe.

(c) 2013. All rights reserved.

Garage sale thirty

Score one for the savvy garage saler!

Score one for the savvy garage saler!

So today was the City-Wide Garage Sale in Reinbeck.  No, we didn’t have one, as we’ve done in years past, but I had planned to actually go this year.  It started off as such a glorious morning: I slept in, then woke up to find that Seymour bought the kids an old (and by old, I mean antique) school desk to keep their coloring books and things in for a decent price.  When I realized that it was garage sale day and that he was out looking at things instead of working, I decided to get the boys up and do the same.  I haven’t gone garage saling in years and it was a beautiful morning for a walk.

And that’s where things went downhill.  Seymour found a train table that he wanted me to look at, so I tried to get the boys ready in a hurry so I could go look at it.  Bubbles packed some milk and cereal to go for the boys and we were off…till Thumper dropped his all over the bottom of the stroller.  The back seat of the stroller has a crossbar instead of a tray, so when he tried to set his cereal container down on it, it tipped over (and he refused to hold onto it).  Then he screamed all the way to the sale and half the time we were there.

I finally managed to calm him down, and then Miss Tadpole tried to give him back his cereal, which started the whole thing over again.  By then I wanted to scream, so we ended up going home.  Seymour had some errands to run out of town and promised to stay with the kids when he got back so that I could still hit some garage sales early this afternoon, but by the time he got home, the garage sales were only scheduled to go for another half hour and at that point, either people have closed up or they’re starting to. *sigh*   So much for my glorious garage sale adventure.

Scenes from the courthouse

Only in Iowa can it be 80° one day and snowing the next.  While it wasn’t 80° where I was yesterday, it was in other parts of the state, according to two of my friends down in southern Iowa.  And rumor has it that the temperature dropped 40 degrees in four hours.  That’s pretty quick!

So, to recap: The weekend and the first part of the week were sunny, warm, and absolutely gorgeous, leaving us all thinking that winter skipped spring altogether and decided that summer should just follow directly this year.  But now Winter, she’s a-back.  With a vengeance.

Me no likey.

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It's beginning to snow... 🙂

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It's really coming down out there!

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Pretty as a postcard. 🙂

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Look at it piling up out there! 🙂

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I took all these – and a few others – over the course of the morning.

Winter in Iowa

Snow Cat

Snow Cat (Photo credit: clickclique)

I’ve had it with winter.  Specifically, I’ve had it with all the white crap Mother Nature keeps dumping on us.  I nearly got stuck at work yesterday because the city does such a lousy job clearing the streets, and the same thing happened again today.  After narrowly avoiding the embarrassment of having to ask my boss to give me a push, what happened?  I came home and promptly got stuck in the mouth of my driveway, with the back end of my van sticking out into our very narrow street.

I was stuck so tight that after the kids and I tried to get out for about ten minutes, I went across the street and asked the neighbor for help (Seymour wasn’t home yet).  It took the two of us a good half hour and maybe a little more to get my van free.  The city I live in (yes, I know, it’s a small town, but that’s how we refer to our municipal government) doesn’t do any better when it comes to cleaning streets than the city I work in.  So in short, I’ve had it with winter.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  When the sun shines on newly fallen snow and it sparkles like a thousand diamonds, I love it as much as the next person.  I appreciate the beauty of snow.  However, I hate dealing with it.  I hate driving in it.  I hate shoveling it.  I hate cleaning it off of my car.

But at times like these, I often think of a joke my dad shared with me once.  It’s about winter in Iowa and, given the trials I’ve had with the snow today and the fact that it was three years ago today that I lost him, this seems like a good time to share it again.  I’ve posted it before, but here it is again in all its snowy glory:

Dear Diary. . .