Saturday, September 27, 2008

New LollyBeads products

I started making these Swarovski Crystal Circle Pendants a while ago, but I've just gotten around to taking all the pictures and putting them up in my store:

There are 8 different color combinations, plus I will take requests for custom colors.

PS: How do you like my watermarks? Lie if you have to.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Monday, September 22, 2008

LOL of the day

Went to the doctor for my yearly physical. The nurse starts with certain basics.
'How much do you weigh?' she asks. '135,' I say.
The nurse puts me on the scale. It turns out my weight is 180.
The nurse asks, 'Your height?' '5 foot 4,' I say.
The nurse checks and sees that I only measure 5'2'.
She then takes my blood pressure and tells me it is very high.
'Of course it's high!' I scream. 'When I came in here I was tall and slender! Now I'm short and fat!'
She put me on Prozac. What a bitch.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I came across an Etsy tutorial on how to fuse plastic shopping bags together. Once done, you have produced a larger, stronger sheet of plastic, with unending possibilities of uses. I couldn't wait to try it. I decided to make a reusable shopping bag.

The tutorial insinuates that you will cut the 'raw' bags into even sizes, fuse these, then sew them together into the size you want. I had an idea that I would rather overlap many sheets to make one huge piece, and then sew my bag from the one huge piece. I also purposely arranged different kinds/colors of bags haphazardly to get a kind of rustic look. I sewed handles out of some nice strong cotton fabric I had on hand. I didn't work from a pattern, but from what I figured in my head (as I often do), and the bag ended up a little wider and shallower than I like. I may redo it so that it is a little narrower and deeper. In any case, here's the finished product.

If I do another, I may use the colors and patterns of the bags to make a more symmetrical design. Walmart bags used to be blue, but now they're white. This now makes me sad. My plastic sheet also did not come out perfectly flat and even. I will need to work on this.

Guava goodness

I was introduced to this yummy snack a couple of years ago at a cookout. You will need toothpicks, cubes of guava paste, cubes of sharp cheddar cheese, and Spanish olives. Spear each toothpick with one cube of guava paste, one cube of cheese, and one Spanish olive. You eat it by popping the whole thing in your mouth at once. Sweet, salty and tangy all in one. Yum!

Friday, September 19, 2008


Today be the annual Talk Like a Pirate Day, matey!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Made of Win!!

I just found this site.




I've added it to my blogroll so I can remember to check it out every day. Assuming I don't die laughing first.

Edit: This one just almost killed me:


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Adventures in quinoa

I've heard some good things about quinoa lately and have been wanting to try it. I finally found some in my grocery store, and found a recipe that included tomatoes, as I have eleventy thousand tomatoes my parents gave to me out of their garden. I modified the recipe to include chicken and zucchini, which I happened to have in the house.

2 t grated lime zest
2 T fresh lime juice
2 T unsalted butter, melted and cooled (I used regular salted butter)
1 T vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
1 t sugar
1 cup quinoa
1 (14- to 15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 medium tomatoes, diced
4 scallions, chopped
1/4 C chopped fresh cilantro

The original recipe called for cooking the quinoa for a time and then steaming it. I cannot be arsed to do that so I just cooked it according to package directions, which was just like cooking rice: quinoa and water, simmer, done.

Whisk together lime zest, lime juice, butter, oil, sugar and some salt and pepper.

Cook chicken in a pan, add zucchini and cook that too. Rinse and drain black beans, add to pan. Add cooked quinoa, tomatoes and scallions. Add lime juice mixture, stir. Yum.

I just realized I totally forgot to add the cilantro. Oh well, it was still very good anyway.

In conclusion, I didn't happen to notice a distinctive flavor from the quinoa. But it is supposed to be Super Good for you, so it will be a great thing to add to dishes. I am thinking of adding it to my stir frys instead of rice. I don't think there is so much nutritional value to rice so this would be a nice substitution.

What else should I try with quinoa? According to my curly hair care book, it's supposed to be a great scalp exfoliator. But at $8 a package, I don't think I'll be rubbing it in my hair.

Monday, September 15, 2008


Just made elote for the first time. Yummy! I came across a recipe a few weeks ago and it's taken me this long to remember to write the ingredients down before I went to the market.


4 ears corn, shucked
3 T mayonnaise
2 t fresh lime juice
2 t finely grated cotija cheese (I could not find cotaja cheese, and had to use Parmesan)
1/2 t chili powder
1/4 t ground cumin
1/4 t ground red pepper
1/8 t salt

Mix mayo and lime juice.

Mix grated cheese and seasonings.

Some versions call for the corn to be grilled in the husk, but I have no grill so I spread butter on the shucked ears of corn, wrapped them in foil, and baked for 30 minutes at 400F.

If you grilled the corn, next you will brush with butter before proceeding. Otherwise, the next step is to brush the corn with the mayo mixture. Then sprinkle with the cheese mixture.

Muy bueno!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

At last, Dragon*Con pics and vids

Disclaimer: Nearly all of these pictures are quite craptastic. Zoom + no flash + noob photographer = bad pics. Most of the video is bad too; our seats were not close so I could only film the video screens, but you get to hear these guys playing, and that's what's important. :D

Dragon*Con pics

and video

EDIT: I switched the links from a Fotki album to a Photobucket album and YouTube video. I had not realized that the free Fotki account would expire at the end of the month.

EDIT AGAIN: I switched the links all back to Fotki. I decided I like it so much better than Photobucket that I'm willing to pay the account fee.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

test 1

Meg, thanks so much for your guidance!

Here's my first stab at a watermark.

Too light? Too dark? Too small? Too big?

Edit: take 2

What about this?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Today's update

So I was a little disappointed with how tired I was today. Yesterday morning I'd felt pretty good and I'd been hoping to improve upon that, but today...not so much.

The orthodontist's office called about Jake's appointment today, and my blood froze. Crap was I missing the appointment right now? But thankfully, she calling to ask if we could change it from 5:40 to 5:00. And since 5:00 had not happened yet, I wasn't late! So that worked out. And also -


Doctor swooped in, looked at his teeth, asked if he was wearing the retainer at night (yes), and told him to stop wearing it immediately because those two teeth that hadn't come in yet that are currently big gaping holes in his tooth line and causing him to be self conscious are NOW coming in! Woohoo! (Anyone remember the Worst Ortho Appointment Ever? And wow, it was almost exactly a year ago!)

I also spent a good part of the day picking out new stones for the healing stone bracelets, because I'm starting to run out of them. This took much planning and comparing and purchases from three sources, because I don't like to use chips or faceted beads but I like to minimize the use of round, regular shaped beads, so it takes a lot of research to find more 'natural' and irregular shaped beads, for the look I'm going for with these bracelets.

I'm also kind of stupid today (you know, my decreased mental acuity). Not sure if it's the meds or what. Takes a while to organize my sentences when speaking, and my spelling is sucking more than usual. And when we went to the grocery store just to pick up bread and a few things for Jake's lunches, I lost all control and bought things like frozen appetizer assortments and chocolate cake and a tiny little frying pan big enough for one egg that I REALLY didn't need but it's so cute because it's got a cute little cartoonish chick hatching out of it's egg on the handle. I DID draw the line at buying the matching whisk, though. I'm not made of money, you know!

And I've come to the conclusion that I've been extra-emotional for a couple weeks now. Not sure if it's the ruptured ovary or the meds or just being sick or what. And I know it's normal and ok to cry when your aunt dies but I feel like the tears are just dropping at the drop of a hat and I hope I can hold it together ok at the wake and funeral.

Oh, and the boy is HIlarious! His dad came to pick him up yesterday and asked me to fill out some stupid health form for Boy Scouts, and I loudly (not yelling) and repeatedly protested the need to fill out all this stupid stuff when we have the health form from the doctor and in the end I just wrote "see attached form" and attached the form. As I handed it to him, I said, "I had a ruptured ovarian cyst a couple weeks ago and we have a theory that it is making me a little more emotional than usual". At which point the boy immediately and dramatically clutched his dad's arm and loudly whispered, "Help me!" Even The Dad had to admit that was damned funny.

Monday, September 8, 2008

My Aunt Cora just died.

My dad (he's 64) is the 'baby' in his family. He's got a brother, two years older, and two sisters more than 10 years older than him. Aunt Cora was 75. She's been sick with cirrhosis of the liver for a while now (no, she was not an alcoholic), and we knew this was coming. I had to miss our family reunion this year (two days ago) because I've been so sick. But now I hear she was in bed and unconscious the whole time so it's not like I would have been able to visit with her anyway if I'd gone.

She raised five children, including one with special needs, who lives independently. She lost her husband maybe 20 years ago. She lost her only son in a three-year battle with cancer in 2005 (he was 50).

She was a really nice lady and I am very sad.

(PS: sorry all of my posts are pity parties these days!)

Can't ANYONE take their own Gorram photos?

I found another person hocking woven crystal heart pendants using MY picture! I don't get it. I'm not even that good of a photographer. If you are MAKE these things, how hard is it to just take a quick picture of it?

This one's just selling them from her blog, I guess it's been going on since Jan. I only found it now because I'm updating my Etsy shop and I don't have any of my pics on my laptop, so I was looking for my pictures online (the ultimate in, I'm allowed to steal my pic...because it's mine). I won't put a link to her here, I'm giving her a chance to do the right thing. I couldn't find an email for her but I made a comment in her blog to please remove the pic.

Guess I need to go ahead and start using watermarks. What's the easiest way to do that? Make a logo with some translucency and layer it over my pics?

UPDATE: She's removed it.

EDIT: I need to add that I am cheap, and the only photo editing tools I use are Paint, and Serif PhotoPlus 5.5. I have so far been unable to create a translucent image that I can paste onto a pic and have it look nice.

Pills are good

One of the medications I have seems be JUST for the itching. I can take 1-3 pills up to 4 times a day. Favorite. Pills. Ever.

I might actually be on the mend. This morning I got up, did the dishes, cleared up the kitchen table (somewhat) and cooked breakfast: Fried egg/mushroom/cheese sammich and Firefly tea (I haven't had a hot, tasty breakfast beverage in DAYS!), all the while, singing along to the Dr. Horrible soundtrack (What? Sing-Along is right IN the title!) Sammich was good. Tea was delicious. Now I'm going back to bed to rest. (I also just want to mention how much I love my laptop. I can sleep with the internet now.) I REALLY need to do two loads of laundry today, too.

Angela: Your bracelet is made, I just haven't been able to get to the post office yet! Stupid international mail. Why does Canadia have to be a different country? I'm SO sorry for the delay!!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Did I even show you all the autographs?

The two comics are to go with the comic I already had signed by Nathan and Alan (from Ebay, for the Kids Need To Read Charity). It would be cool if I could get everyone's sig on these, huh?

And thanks for the ideas from when I needed help decided what to have signed!

I am officially falling completely apart

I've been sick in bed with the flu since Wednesday night. It started out as a classic flu: fever, aches, icky nose, coughing. Then when I woke up yesterday, most of that was lessened, but my stomach hurt and my back and chest hurt on and off (it didn't seem like my heart at all, it reminded me of the pleuritic pain I had once before, an inflammation of the pleuritic cavity). I ate twice (toast and later some bagel chips) but I felt horribly nauseous after each time. My right tonsil, which was always large, was now huge and touching my throat and making me gag. My left neck gland is swollen. I literally could not sleep all night.

This morning the chest/back pain was gone and I was able to eat without feeling nauseous. I've slept a lot, to make up for last night. My tonsil is not as bad, but the neck gland is still swollen. And this morning the bottoms of my feet started itching and won't stop, and my left foot is somewhat swollen. My left eye got red and feels a little stiff as if it's swollen (I can see it in the lid a bit). My right eye is red and swollen. My gums feel a little weird. My NIPPLES and areolas are swollen! And I had some spots on my back that felt raised, so I just checked in a mirror and sure enough, there are raised, red patches on my back!


I went to the hospital. Turns out I am having an allergic reaction (don't know to what) AND I have a fungal infection (eww). I have four medications: two antihistamines, prednisone, and an antifungal.

My foot is SOOOOOOO itchy, it's all I can do not to tear it apart. I just took my first round of pills and I hope they work quickly.

Good God, when will it end?

Friday, September 5, 2008

Flashing back

So...the ovarian cyst. What was is now...two Thursdays ago?...that I started getting the pain in my side. Doctor on Sunday, pelvic ultrasound on Monday. I waited all day Tuesday for someone to call me about the results, but the call didn't come until Wednesday morning. The day BEFORE my trip. My internist called that morning to say they'd gotten the results and told me that I had an ovarian cyst that had ruptured. He said I should call the gyno and make an appointment to be seen as soon as possible. I asked him if I could take my trip, and he said it was a judgement call. But while I was talking to him, panic set in. I had no idea that something like this would scare me so much. But my ears starting ringing and I felt faint. I got off the phone with him and called the gyno's office, explaining that I needed to be seen as soon as possible. She said she's see what she could find and call me back.

Ok, how bad was this? I consulted Google. Turns out there are several different kinds of ovarian cysts, with different causes and some different symptoms. Mine seemed mostly like it was a 'functional' one, not ususally harmful. Ok. I was really trying to calm myself down. But one of the issues that can happen with this is internal bleeding. I spent the morning, doing my errands, bringing The Boy to the new school for Open House, wondering in the back of my head what if I was bleeding internally, was I going to miss my trip? Was I going to need surgery? Who was going to take care of The Boy?

Later in the day the gyno's office called back, they did not think I needed to be seen today, but would make room if I wanted. The doctor herself had looked at the ultrasound, and it did, indeed, look like a 'functional' cyst, it was now resolving, the pain I'd felt a few days ago was the rupturing, it was not bleeding. I IMMEDIATELY felt relieved and much better about the whole thing. Ok. I wasn't bleeding to death. Phew.

And within a couple days, my tummy problems abruptly disappeared, too. So I think the whole diverticulitis thing was a ruse. It was the cyst all along.

But, of course, no rest for the weary. Got back from my trip late Monday night. Slept alot Tuesday, to try to catch up. By Wednesday morning I was feeling refreshed and energetic, and started thinking about all the things I was going to get done. So then do you know what happened? I got the flu Wednesday night. I have been in bed since then, leaving only twice, when I had to bring The Boy to the store to get last minute school supplies.

Tomorrow is our annual family reunion. My aunt, who's house it is always held at, is dying. In 10 years I've never missed a reunion, and it's most especially important that I go to THIS one. But now I don't think I'm going to be able to make it. I haven't showered in days. I'm pretty gross. And I'd had to go off coffee when I was having the other issues, had just started coming back to it, and now I'm too sick to drink it again. :(

ETA: And, I just got my period. Who wants to come to my house? I am extra-super-fun to hang out with right now!