Friday, August 28, 2009

Poor, poor, Petey.

Peter lacks the admirable quality of self-restraint; thus, I must force it upon him in the form of an ego-bruising plastic cone. The little bugger has inexplicably starting gnawing on his tummy and refuses to stop. He has now successfully removed all fur from the area. Gross. He may have an allergy that would require steroid treatment, but my cat-loving friends let me know that those can lead to kidney infections, which at 11 or 12, give or take a year, Peter may be more susceptible to. So I'm giving this more humiliating cone+cortisone cream approach a shot. Wish him luck!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

It's Almost Here

Seasonal change is a subtle art around here. Seasons do not smack you upside the head as they do on the East Coast ... or virtually anywhere else. One has to look for the faintest clues of change. And I, friends, fancy myself the Sherlock Holmes of Autumn. Though Fall in San Francisco is almost infalliby just a version of Indian Summer, making it possible at last to venture outside sans cardigan, it is still most definitely Fall. My favorite. My first Doyle-esque clue of its onset this morning? The faint haze in the air. I'm sure an astronomer could explain it to me in terms of the Earth's shifting axis, or something, but I can't pretend to understand. I just love it. Again, it's very subtle, but even amidst the sunshine - it's there. It just puts me in a wonderful mood. I think Tom Hanks' character in "You've Got Mail" (you know you like the movie) put it perfectly when he wrote to Meg Ryan, "it makes me want to send you a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils." Though Spring always claims the virtue of rejuvenation, I cannot help but think that for those whose year still revolves around excitement over new books and lined leaf paper, Fall is the true season of new possibilities, excitement, and hope.

Monday, August 24, 2009

It's time to break out in Singer.

I am in full-blown domestic mode. It happens sometimes and quickly passes with little action on my part. But this time I mean business. Will is slightly less than thrilled that I ordered a pressure canner from Amazon on Friday. He muttered something about "botulism" and shook his head. So there's a start on that front.

Next up, sewing! Now this is something I sort of used to know how to do. I have no idea now. And the great news is, my mom had hopes that I might actually follow in her and my grandma's footsteps of knowing how to do useful things, and purchased and refurbished a lovely Singer sewing machine for me. Granted, that was probably eight years ago. However, I am ready to pull it out of the Harry Potter cupboard under the stairs, blow the dust off, and make something of and for myself.

The inspiration? The lovely sheeny gold jumpsuit below. Ashley Simpson rarely inspires anything in me but a bit of indigestion; however, no one can argue with a sweet looking seventies-style jumpsuit. It will be mine, oh yes, it will be mine. The main problem with having a fetish for designer duds and simultaneously working in non-profit is quite obvious. When trends come up that aren't worth robbing a bit from my savings account (like a classic trench coat I'd wear forever, etc.), I usually go the $20 route at Forever 21. The result: an ill-fitting, ill-made thing that looks cheap because it is and, in this short jumpsuit's case, might make me look like a bit of a harlot. These items inevitably end up in the Goodwill bag with a "what was I thinking??" look of disgust.

Thus, it is time to learn how to sew. Then I could take that $20, head to Britex, find the perfect fabric and make it fit perfectly! Cheers to a desperate attempt not to run out of steam on this one.

Loved it!

I went to see Julia & Julie yesterday with my mom. It was so cute! We both loved it. And I daresay it gave me new blogging energy (please note the increase in today's number of posts).

Next step, order Mastering the Art of French Cooking from Amazon!

Take note, ladies: a candy advisory notice.

It's 3:25pm. Thus, I have just come back from my daily pilgrimage to the downtown Oakland Long's (now CVS, though I refuse to recognize its legitimacy). I go for two reasons: 1) That little splash of afternoon sunshine makes me feel a little less dead inside after going on 7 hours at my desk. 2) While I sometimes justify the pilgrimage because I need bodywash, deodorant, etc., I more often need a little bit of chocolate to get me through the next 1.75 hours.

Those misguided financial gurus who think you'll be a millionaire by thirty if you don't buy that daily latte would seriously judge me for this little habit. Sure, I probably lose a couple hundred dollars a year on Twizzlers, InStyle magazine, and generic brand ibuprofen gelcaps, but can you really put a price on sanity?

Anyhow, I started out with a point, and it was not my dysfunctional approach to finances. As I've settled into my 26th year, I've noticed the remarkable change in my metabolism. All those years of over-indulgence in fried chicken and cheesecake while scoffing at passing joggers are truly a thing of the past. A few months ago, I started doing the unthinkable: looking at food labels. What an eye-opening experience. How it is I haven't gone in for a triple bypass yet is beyond me.

Still not to my point. It is this: a standard package of plain M&M's contains 10 grams of fat. That is horse-hockey! Are you kidding me? There must be 1 gram of fat to every individual M&M. And they aren't even that good. Today, I rediscovered a far better classic: the York Peppermint Pattie. 2.5 grams of fat. Pure pepperminty heaven. Enough said.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Results are in, Amigos! What's Left to Ponder? Woo!

Hooray! I found out I passed all four of my CSET Single Subject English exams! I'll be on my way to inflicting Pride & Prejudice, Hamlet, and Sylvia Plath on unsuspecting teens before I know it. As many know, I was incredibly stressed about passing these extremely tricky and challenging exams in one shot. Do you know what 'creolization' is? Yeah, me neither until I had to learn it, among many other random things, for these odd tests. I walked out of there with absolutely no feelings of certainty whatsoever about my passing status. I couldn't be more relieved!

Special thanks to..........
* Mom, for the great book summarizing the top 100 classic books.
* Rach, who took them all before and scared the heck out of me so that I studied like mad.
* Dave, Jill, and Will for driving me to a random testing site in Daly City.
* And, last but not least, Thomas (pictured here on my book) for being absolutely useless and bothering me while I studied.

Amazing Article

This is a really wonderful article about how improving the lives of women can have a positive impact on the entire population, both socially and economically. It is from an upcoming book called "Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide," written by a husband and wife duo of journalists. Can't wait to read it!

Click here to read the article in the New York Times.

Check out the description (and maybe order it!) on Amazon.


Sheridan has been putting her big heart and copious artistic talent to excellent use at San Francisco's Family House. The mission of Family House, Inc. is to serve children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and their families, by providing physical comforts and emotional support free from financial concerns.

The beautiful murals you see are her labors of love over the past two years. What a wonderful environment for kids who are enduring so much to get to play in - well done, Sher!

Wisdom Teeth ... I'm Not Feeling Clever

My teeth - or where they used to be, I guess - still really hurt. I feel like this.

Friday, August 7, 2009


For the record, I do prefer more hard-hitting journalism than this, but it's 5pm on Friday evening, and I have to stick around at work until 8pm. Enter the "Who's the cutest in the animal kingdom?" slideshow on the NY Daily News. You win, little baby red panda.

Smoking Haute

Will and I finally - FINALLY - get to have our guest room! I will post pictures soon, but it's already painted (thanks to my mom, I'm of little help in that department) and has a few surprises waiting in it for Will, like a comfy leather club chair I found for an absolute steal on good old Craigslist.

The guest room is actually a guest room/library/smoking room. Good thing I don't work for ACS anymore, or that last one would never fly. One of the things Will has really wanted is a very classic old heavy crystal ashtray. eBay to the rescue! This one is on it's way. :)

Cultivating my gilded thumb

I was sadder than sad when my beloved Domino magazine went under several months ago. We only had 5 issues together! A loving relationship tragically cut short. Their website was especially good, too, particularly for neat little features like creating your own terrarium. When I first hear "terrarium," I only think of holding a toad by the name of Norman captive in one for several weeks until it became blaringly apparent that he would have none of the crickets and other bugs I continually foisted upon him (don't fret, he was eventually released back into "wild," also known as the camellia bush).

On the other hand, Domino's versions are a great deal more attractive. I just love how elegant and charming these little plants look in bell jars! Now "terrarium" conjures up images of Victorian hothouses, bustles, and little finches in gilded cages. Further evidence I was born in the wrong era (i.e. century!).

I'm dying to make a few to put on my mantle, and I think they would make great gifts, as well. Keep a sharp eye out for me if you're ever wandering a flea-market, etc. for bell jars! Unfortunately, the directions went away with the website, so I'll really be winging it.

First. Post. Ever!

I'm not entirely certain why I would need a blog, though it does seem like a fairly decent way to catalogue a surplus of random thoughts, ideas, and pursuits. So here goes ...

A Note About the Title: Who doesn't absolutely love this word? It's one of the signatures of the oh-so-wonderful Jane Austen lexicon; or, if you ask the dictionary: "well-suited for the occasion, as an action, manner, or expression; apt; appropriate: The chairman's felicitous anecdote set everyone at ease." It's probably rare that my remarks ever set someone at ease, but it's worth a shot.