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Monthly Archives: October 2013

Calibration Jeans

Well, after sitting at soccer practice freezing (yes, I am now officially a thin-blooded flatlander once again!) I have come to the conclusion I must admit that summer is over. After weeks of loving the temps in the 80s, and a few extra weeks of warm weather clothes, it’s time to haul out the warmer stuff –  long sleeved shirts, sweatshirts, and painfully, the jeans.

My calibration jeans informed me (a little rudely, I might add!) that I’ve gained a few pounds since I last wore them. Rats!

Unfamiliar with the term? It’s that one pair you must have that don’t give much, so they keep you honest in regards to how your weight is doing without having to get on the scales.

The good news is, I have a few pairs with a little more give, so I may not have to succumb to the horror of having to re-buy a larger size.

If you’ll remember, as a part of my weight reduction program, when a pair of pants gets too big, they are outta here, so I have a financial incentive to not gain the weight back. If I do, I have to buy new ones.

So, I’m going to suffer through tight pants for a few weeks as I work my way back down. Serves me right. I know better than to allow the drawstring waist pedal pushers to lull me into thinking I haven’t gained any weight!

Dirty Dozen/Clean 15

A bunch of us are trying to eat better – more nutritious food, smaller quantities, getting away from processed foods.

And whenever I am making an effort to eat better, I think about the need to get away from pesticides. It seems to be ridiculous to eat “better” food, when that “better” food is washed in poisonous chemicals.

Now I get that not everyone can afford to eat completely organic foods. The truth is, they DO cost more, and have no more vitamin content. So it is easy to just not worry about it.

Well, I’m of a mind that even if you can’t afford to eat completely organic, then at least buy organic of the foods that have the most nasty pesticides, or are affected the worst. In my efforts to educate myself about what those might be, I discovered the “dirty dozen and clean 15.” These are lists of the 12 worst fruits and vegetables to buy non-organic, and the 15 non-organic that have the least dangerous poisons on them, or are the least affected.

Dirty Dozen – always eat these organic

1. apples
2. celery
3. cherry tomatoes
4. cucumber
5. grapes
6. hot peppers
7. nectarines (imported)
8. peaches
9. potatoes
10. spinach
11. strawberries
12. sweet bell peppers
…plus collards & kale
…plus summer squash & zucchini

Clean 15 – these are deemed safe to eat conventional

1. asparagus
2. avocado
3. cabbage
4. cantaloupe
5. corn
6. eggplant
7. grapefruit
8. kiwi
9. mangoes
10. mushrooms
11. onions
12. papayas
13. pineapples
14. sweet peas (frozen)
15. sweet potatoes

You can find this printable copy of the 2013 version of both lists to keep with you when you shop at

“Food Your Way.”

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In looking over this 2013 list, I’ve noticed some changes. In 2012 ALL berries were listed in the dirty dozen, including blueberries, rather than just strawberries. I’m going to need to do some investigating on that!

Anyway, if you’re trying to eat better, you might consider starting here!

Ha! I Knew Better!

It’s been a long time since I’ve had a Pinterest orgy.

I know that I can’t be trusted to just surf around for a few minutes and leave. So, I’ve been avoiding it altogether. I don’t know what made me check in tonight. But I did. I luxuriated in the awesomeness. I slobbered all over my computer. I groaned in ecstasy.

I mean how could I not? Luscious rust (and heart-shaped, no less!)…

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Food so incredible I am ALMOST inspired to cook!

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And the SHOES. Oh. My.

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Next time I looked up, 3 hours had gone by and my whole evening was gone.

I wanna be mad at myself. But you know what? I had fun. A LOT of fun. Sometimes that’s okay.

Running the Goodie Gauntlet

I’m trying really hard to watch what I eat, and at the top of my list is reducing/eliminating sugar from my diet with exceptions only for the most special of occasions. My record thus far is spotty, doing better some times than others.

Last night I succumbed to a frozen yogurt with the girls. The plan was to take them (I needed to do a little spoilin’ since I’m needing to crack the whip with them most days!) and not have one myself, but next thing I knew, I had a cup in front of me, as well. Which wouldn’t have been so bad if it was JUST the yogurt, but somehow it ended up with hot fudge and some butterfinger crumbles. Definitely not part of the plan.

Tonight, I went down to Wholefoods for fresh veggie juice and Mr. Tattered needed eggs for the morning. Well, the eggs are in the back of the store, so I started there. But then to get to the juice bar, you have to run a dangerous gauntlet…

First past the pastry counter. I can truthfully say I have no idea if they are as good as they look, and I want to keep it that way.

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Then there is the “pile-the-cookies-in-a-bag-and-pay-by-the-pound-kiosk” Once again, they look delish, but I don’t want to find out. That is a floodgate I just don’t want to open for fear of never getting it closed again!

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And as if that isn’t bad enough, the final hurdle is the gelato bar. I am not a stranger to the gelato bar at the Whole Foods we used to go to, which is 30 minutes away, so less inclined to become a serious problem. But so far I’ve managed to resist the one here close to home. I am just so afraid of not being able to resist once I get started.

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Whew! I made it all the way to the juice bar without committing any sins, and came away with an Einstein’s Theory for Mr. Tattered, and a Killer Green Buzz for myself.

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I figured I was home free, but alas, Mr. Tattered decided he wanted a frozen yogurt, so stopped to get him one on the way home. I had just had one last night, and made it through the “goodie gauntlet” at Whole Foods unscathed. I was feeling pretty good.

You can see where this is headed?

I stood in front of the yogurt machines and called Mr. Tattered to give him his flavor choices, still not having formed the intent to indulge, but darned if I didn’t end up doing a repeat performance.

I’m such a weenie.

Oh, well, tomorrow is another day. I think I’m going to stay out of any businesses that sell food. It’s safer that way.

This Is My Brain On Art…

I have addressed the issue of my messy art room a few times, but “non-artists” have a hard time understanding why all this stuff is necessary. I’ve had a hard time explaining it until I watched myself cleaning and organizing and realized how I “see” things differently than “normal” people.

I hardly EVER throw anything away!

Check this out. Back awhile ago I bought a a variety of metal pieces to use in a jewelry project. When you look at the photo, what do you see? A filigree piece mounted on a backing, right? You pull off the filigree, use it in the jewelry and throw the rest away.

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Well, here’s what I see…

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A filigree piece (which will be used in the jewelry) a piece of wire that will make a cool strand of wire hair for a wooden angel ornament, and a tag, that, with a little paint and embellishing will make a journaling card for a scrapbook page!

Packaging for “ice cream” bars – trash, right?

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Heck, NO! The reverse side is EXACTLY the right color to make letters for my canvases.

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And this plastic backing for paper tape should just get tossed when the paper tape has been used – unless it lives in MY world, then it will get modpodged onto a canvas.

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Now multiply those few examples times 10,000 (or more!) and you see my issue!

My brain on art is pretty messy!

We Will Be Known By Our Words and Our Deeds – And So Will Our Lord

We really will. And so will He.

Let me be the first to say, that as a Christian, I have done more things that have made God weep than I like having to admit. It saddens me to know that I have not always been the best ambassador for Christ that I am capable of being, in both words and deeds. But I try to learn from my mess-ups, and as best I can, to make amends. Although not every bad thing we do can be made right, if our missteps cause us to do better, at least something good comes from them.

One of the good things that has come from the times I’ve strayed off-course is that I am much quicker to extend grace to others, knowing how badly I’ve needed it, and how terrible it feels when I don’t get it.

At risk of delving into both religion AND politics (both absolute no-nos on blogs, I’m told!)  my question is this, “Are we living our religion in our politics?” Yeah, yeah, separation of church and state. I get that and I totally agree they should be separate, EXCEPT in the context that our behavior in our political discussions should honor Christ, and way too often it does not.

I confess I am a liberal Christian. There are parts of the Bible that don’t make any sense to me, and I tend to default to people working it out between themselves and God, rather than telling people what I think they should do/believe. My biggest take-away from the New Testament is love, love, love, then when you’re through, love some more. I don’t believe you can legislate morality, and I believe that God gave us free will for a reason. FORCING fellow Americans who are not believers to live under a moral code that one religion believes is the right way, doesn’t work for me. Our government officials are supposed to be governing ALL Americans, not just the Christians. Freedom “of” religion, requires freedom “from” religion, as well.

Someone being able to marry their same sex partner, does NOT harm my marriage. Having the legal ability to have an abortion, does not force me to have one. Those are choices that need to be made by the people experiencing those circumstances, not by me, and certainly not the government. For those wanting smaller government, that should be a no-brainer. The government does not belong in the bedrooms of consenting adults.

But what concerns me most is seeing Christians advocating hate, prejudice, and intolerance. These are not one-time screw ups. They are practiced every day in the e-mails that are forwarded spewing not only misinformation, but hatred, racial and otherwise. I have seen many of them come through my inbox, and there I times I am driven to tears. The unfairness is hard for me to wrap my head around. But the saddest part of all is how little of what I’m seeing is true.

Mark Twain was fond of saying, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” And a lot of the charges flying around right now, fit that bill.

I’m not going to spend time defending the President. I happen to think he is doing a good job given what he’s had to deal with, but that’s whole ‘nuther conversation. But what I would ask, is that if people THINK they have an issue with him, or what he stands for, they would make sure they KNOW what those things are. Not just take the word of some email coming across the internet.

And if they DO ultimately decide that they disagree with him, that they do it in a way that they wouldn’t mind Jesus seeing – that doesn’t subject Christianity to ridicule. HATING him (or anyone) is not an acceptable Christian reaction. Praying for his wisdom and discernment is. Working to put reasonable people in office is.

I don’t know where all the upheaval in our country is going to lead. The number of Christians I hear talking about stockpiling guns and other weapons scares me. The venom coming from their mouths scares me.  Christians should be the LAST people resorting to violence and/or venomous words. Will our hateful words and deeds bring glory to our Lord?

I think not.

More Love!

A few weeks ago I told you about the upload of a print I did on Society 6 to have made into a tote – remember?

Well, it arrived today (finally!) and I’m in love again! Oh my! It’s beautiful. The quality of the bag is excellent. The color is perfect. I’m overwhelmed it looks so good. It makes me look like a real live artist.

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The question is, what do I do now?

I feel like I need to do some art designed specifically for totes. This piece works, but the proportions aren’t quite what I would have done if I had known I would be using the art for a square item. I’m thinking I need to try some actual square canvases and see how they work for totes. My mind is swirling with ideas!

So, against all my new “rules” about finishing what I already have started before I but anymore “supplies” I bought a few 12 x 12 canvases and I’m going to try a few designed expressly for totes.

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I know, I know. I caved pretty fast. But I used my 40% off coupon at Michaels, and they don’t take up up a whole lot of space. And this is kinda special, isn’t it? And these are really lame excuses, but it’s the best I can come up with at the moment.

At this point I don’t really care if anyone is buying them besides me, but the possibility that SOMEONE might want one is exciting! I couldn’t help myself.

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