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December 2007

Five Posts Meme

Another borrowed meme, this time from the lovely Mary from Red Nose.

Tag! You're it! Brag about your diary! The meme: Pick out five blog posts that illustrate the evolution of your blog, link to them, and comment on them. Then tag five more diarists.

Okay, this wasn't as easy as I thought it would be, as I have nearly 800 posts on my blog! Also, I used this blog mostly as a portal leading to entries on my currently-on-life-support journal or photo sets on flickr, so I don't actually have to many quality entries, but I sloshed through my archives and came up with what I think are five of my best blog posts:

1. Silver Anniversary. Old pictures and memories of my dad on the 25th anniversary of his death.

2. A Positive Weekend Recap. Participation Positives is one of my favourite memes, even though I often forget to do it. The premise is to start the week off on a positive note by listing positive things or writing a poisitive post. I had several of these to chose from, but re-reading this post made me smile, so I chose it.

3. Life and Death. My politically incorrect opinion on the death of Teri Schaivo and the way innocent human beings are treated in this country in general. It's actually pretty short, and I didn't even share my opinion of her adulterous asshole "husband", so I was really holding back, but I'm sure it'll piss someone off anyway.

4. Mayfly Project. I love memes (you may have noticed), and The Mayfly Project, where you sum up the past year in twenty words or less (okay, apparently they've changed it to 24 words exactly; not quite sure when they did that, but whatever), is particularly challenging.

5. Day Off. I love to take pictures (you may have noticed that as well). This one is one of my favourites. Enjoy!

Stuff I Love in Spite of Itself

Today's Friday Love List:

  1. I love my family, even when they irritate the crap outta me.
  2. I love red wine (particularly zinfandel), even though it gives me a headache.
  3. I love my friends, even if they're all so far away.
  4. I love The Gap, even though they don't carry my size.
  5. I love riding the bus to work, even though it takes longer than driving.
  6. I love cute, high heeled shoes, even if they give me blisters.
  7. I love audiobooks, even though I can't turn the pages.
  8. I love taking naps in the afternoon, even though it means I won't sleep well that night.
  9. I love designer clothes, even though I can't afford them.
  10. I love losing weight, even though it takes forEVER!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving went fabulously! Mom and I bought the whole dinner from Von's rather than cooking, and not only did it come with tons of food (10-12lb turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie), it was really delicious as well! We just picked up some whipped topping for the pumpkin pie and a veggie tray (so we'd be a little healhty), and grandma made a green bean casserole, because she couldn't stand not cooking anything!

We picked up the food around 10 a.m., and took it up to my grandparent's house where we were having dinner. We just needed to reheat everything, and since we weren't eating until 1 p.m., I was able to relax and watch the Packers win another game, this time on a large flatscreen TV with my grandfather. It was fun to having someone to discuss the game with! My cousins weren't able to make it this year, so it was just me and mom, my grandparents and my aunt and uncle. We missed the kids, but had a nice, relaxed, easygoing Thanksgiving anyway.

All that said, I'm kinda glad it's over, and now I have three more days to relax and continue to heal my better, but still broken eyeballs. I get tired really easily now, and I'm not sure if it's just that the healing is so intense my body just has to sleep a lot, or if the medication I'm taking for my eyes is making my so tired, but it's been frustrating and annoying. I'm used to having at least some energy, and suddenly I have little to none. Grr. But, my eyes are improving and that's the important thing!

And, now to celebrate our successful Thanksgiving dinner and family get-together, my mom and I are each enjoying a nice chilled glass of Viongier from Sterling Vineyards. It's one of my favourite wines from that vineyard, and it's delicious!


Random Thoughts for a Tuesday

  1. I need a mani/pedi in the worst way! The polish on my fingernails is chipped and nasty, and my cuticles are from hell! My toes look a little better, but I could really use a good foot massage, as my plantar facsitiis is acting up again.
  2. I can't wait to colour my hair! My eyes haven't been good enough to even do a glazing, but I think my this weekend I might be able to manage some d.i.y. haircolouring.
  3. That said I must confess I've been having quite a few good hair days lately. I don't know if it's the cut or the shampoo/conditioner I've been using, but my hair has been soft and manageable. I haven't even used any product except hairspray on it! I can't explain it, but I like it!
  4. I am so looking forward to wearing make-up again. I'm sure I could probably wear foundation and blush right now, but I'm not taking any chances! Then again, I've kinda enjoyed the extra 10 - 15 minutes I've had in the morning to enjoy my coffee!
  5. My ears are much better today. The left one is still stuffed up a bit, but people no longer sound like robots, which is a nice change.
  6. I am slowly getting over my disappointment at not being able to participate in NaNoWriMo this year. I know there's always next year, but that's so far away! I also know I can sit down and write a novel any month out of the year, but it's just more fun to do it with thousands of other people who can cheer your increasing word count and commiserate with your writer's block, than all alone.
  7. Today I wore clear reading glasses at work rather than the sunglasses (they're not really dark sunglasses, but camouflaged my red eyes) I have been wearing. The shades were just too dark, and my eyes aren't quite as scary looking as they have been. It's been a nice change.
  8. And finally, speaking of my broken eyeballs, I just got back from the eye doctor, and he said they look much better! He seemed really happy and optimistic, which helped calm my nerves a bit. I knew I was seeing better, but it's always nice to hear it from a professional! He also decreased my medication, so that's a good sign as well! I'm hoping to be completely healed by the end of this year, so I can start of 2008 healthy and whole!

Participation Positives

I haven't done this in a very long time, but I'm trying to have more gratitude and positive feelings in my life as I recover from whateverthehell it is that's wrong with my broken eyeballs, so here's a list of positives for today:

  1. First and foremost, I can see better everyday! In fact, I drove myself to the bus stop this morning and home this evening. Some of the lights at night are still a bit too bright, but I can see the road really well, so I'm back to having some independance!
  2. This Thursday is Thanksgiving in the USA, and even though I've been sick, I have plenty to be thankful for: my loving family, my great friends, my awesome job, and the ability to take some amazing trips a few times a year!
  3. The Green Bay Packers! 9 - 1. 'Nuff said.
  4. I am planning on being back in the gym (sorry, Kevin, the Club) next Monday. I know I won't be up to the level of fitness I was a little over two weeks ago, but the good news is, muscles have memory, so it won't be long before I'm back on track!
  5. I have an awesome Christmas Card design this year! I will probably come up with a "holiday" card design for my secular friends, but the Christ-based card is, if I may say so, one of my best yet!!

Good News and Bad News

The good news is: my eyes are improving every day! I can read really well today (without glasses!), and my distance and night vision is better, too. I still have floaters, but they are just annoying and will hopefully go away eventually. My vision is also still a little blurry, but that, too, is more annoying than disabilitating.

The bad news is: I have now is a stuffy head and plugged up ears. My hearing is distorted now - everything sounds melodically metalic, like everyone and everything is a robot. Like Marvin the Paranoid Android from the Hitchhicker's Guide to the Galaxy.  Again annoying and will hopefully be resolved when I can stop taking these crazy eye drops.

More good and bad news: The Green Bay Packers are playing a great game today against the Carolina Panthers, but that probably means that stupid Fox network will probably switch to a "more competitive" game by the middle of the third quarter. I never thought I'd say this, but I really hope the Panthers pick it up a bit!!

The Friday Love List

I first discovered The Friday Love List from Mary's blog some time ago, and am finally getting around to playing myself. Here's a random list of foodie stuff I love today:

  1. Orbit Wintermint gum.
  2. Lemon bars with powdered sugar.
  3. A grande Americano from Uptown Espresso.
  4. Healthy Choice Steamers. Particularly the Creamy Dill Salmon. Yum!
  5. Smartwater.
  6. Orange marmalade.
  7. Chopped cherry Jam from Bea's Ho-Made Products.
  8. Minestrone soup with crusty sourdough bread.
  9. Fettucini Alfredo.
  10. Medium rare grilled New York strip steak.
  11. Lemon and garlic grilled salmon.
  12. Fuji and Gala apples.
  13. Clementines.
  14. Baked cornish game hen.
  15. Crock pot pork chops with cream of mushroom soup.
  16. Creamed tuna on toast.
  17. Campbells' Chicken Noodle soup. The classic!
  18. Chicken Caesar salad (favourite is from Quizno's).
  19. Buffalo chicken wings (mild) with Litehouse Bleu cheese dressing.
  20. Hearty beef stew with tons of veggies and barley.

Bon appetite!

Thursday 13: Napa Valley Recap

For today's Thursday 13 I will be doing my Recap of the trip to Napa Valley I took with my friends DeeDee and Suzie, which is several weeks overdue, but better late than never, right?

  1. Turns out I am still a terrible navigator. I ended up directing us to Oakland  (which is a standing joke since I did that while travelling to JournalCon 02 in San Francisco) instead of around it as originally planned. Luckily, DeeDee is familiar with the Napa area, and was able to direct us to the hotel in Vallejo with little trouble.
  2. According to, the site on which DeeDee made the hotel reservations, we were supposed to get two Queen beds and a roll-a-way in our room, but suddenly the hotel doesn't provide roll-a-ways because they pose a threat if there is a fire. Something about them blocking exits, or something. WTF? Anyway, DeeDee and I ended up sharing a bed, which really wasn't that bad.
  3. Napa Valley is beautiful! I'd heard of its beauty before, but since I had never been there, I had no idea just how lovely it is. Before boarding the Wine Train, we drove around and looked at the scenery (turned out we took just about exactly the same route as the train was going to take, but I don't think any of us cared, except maybe Suzie who did all the driving), scoping out which wineries and towns we wanted to visit later. The leaves were just starting to change, and the colours were amazing!
  4. At the station before the trip on the Wine Train, a wine expert came out to teach us all a little bit about tasting and appreciating wine. Some of the tips and tricks were familiar, but some were new, including holding your hand over the glass while twirling it, then sticking your nose in and getting a good whiff of the scent. It's more powerful and you can smell more of the scents such as the floral notes that I don't often notice in wines.
  5. The Train itself was great fun! We were seated in the Vista Dome and had the gormet lunch. It was delicious, and so beautifully presented! We got free champagne and the three of us toasted to our friendship. I later tried a red wine I'd never had before with my grilled quail, and it was quite good.
  6. After our lunch, the three of us went exploring on the train. Let me tell you, walking on a moving train is an amazing workout! We walked all the way to the end car, and got a glimpse of some of the other seating options available. I think next time I might just sit in the lounge car - you get get food and wine in there, and the seats are really comfortable, and the view is great!
  7. Later that afternoon, we drove around some of the outlying towns. We stopped in Calistoga and browsed some of the little shops along the main street. It's such a quaint little town! I would love to go back and visit there again some time.
  8. The next day we visited the Beringer Winery. The grounds were beautiful - so elegantly landscaped with lush foliage, gorgeous flowers, topiaries and fountains! I ended up taking quite a few pictures there. We checked out the gift shop, and had planned to do some wine tasting there, but it was WAY too expensive for us, so we just looked around then moved on.
  9. The other winery we visited was Sterling, which was really fantastic! We had to ride a tram to get up to the winery, which was up on top of a hill. The view was spectacular! The  tour of the winery was very well organized. We started out getting a taste of wine as we got off the tram, then started the self-guided tour which took us through all aspects of wine making. There were video presentations along the way, as well as more wine to taste. It was probably the most interesting winery tour I've ever taken. And, the wine was delicious as well; I ended up buying two bottles before we left!
  10. We spent quite a bit of time on the back patio enjoying the last two tastes of the tour. DeeDee and I also did an extra "flight" of wine tastes, so between all of us, we pretty much tasted all the wines Sterling has to offer. Because my companions aren't big fans of red wines, I ended up with extra, so I was pretty toasted by the time we left!
  11. After passing by this hideously decorated place several times, we finally had to stop to take photos of what DeeDee called "The Freak House". It was gross and freakish and disturbing, and hopefully just decorated like this for Halloween. I hope it is not like this all the time! Freakhouse2_2                                                                                                              12.  It was totally an awesome weekend spent with wonderful company! I wish we could've stayed longer, but we all have lives and jobs and stuff to get back to. Hopefully we'll have a chance to get together again sometime soon!

13.     And finally, one last photo: Napa34

Stealing Memes

I decided to steal this "7 Random Things" meme from ljcfyi because, as I said in her comments, I'm a bit tired of writing about my broken eyeballs. So, without further ado, here are seven unusual things you may or may not know about me:

  1. I have random food allergies. One day I can eat walnuts with no problem, but a week or two later they'll make my throat close up and itch. Ditto with bananas, carrots and eggs. I have no idea why this is.
  2. I spent three years of my childhood attempting to consume a giant lollypop. Seriously, it was bigger than my head! I kept it at my grandparent's house wrapped in saran wrap, and every summer for three years I worked on eating that dang thing. I think I finally gave up on it.
  3. When I was a kid I used to eat butter. Just butter. Not on anything like bread, I'd just stick my finger in the softened stick of buttery goodness and eat it. That's kinda gross now, isn't it?
  4. One more from the "Okay I Guess I Was a Weird Child" files: I used to hunt Bigfoot in the mountains when we lived in Cle Elum, WA. I was despirate to find Bigfoot and be his friend. I thought Bigfoot was cool.
  5. I am petrified of spiders. It doesn't matter how big or small they are, if I see one I will jump and scream.
  6. I'm neat, tidy and organized at work, but a total slob at home.
  7. When I get fixated on a song, I will play it over and over and over again. Sometimes for days or weeks at a time, until I finally get tired of it and move on.

Eyeball Update

Well, the eye doctor I saw last night basically confirmed what the P.A. said Monday: I have a profound case of uveitis. I finally got some drops for my eyes - he gave me a bottle in the office to start with, which was a good thing because the pharmacy didn't have any of the prescription drops available - so I'm more confident than ever that I will be seeing clearer soon. Today, however, I think my vision is a bit blurrier, but that might be due to the eye drops. I don't know. I have a follow up appointment on Friday, so I will learn more then.