Friday Five

TGIF, my friends! It's finally Friday (and a payday, as well!), and I could NOT be happier. I know last Friday was a holiday, which is awesome, yes, but I really do love my Fridays at work, because it's more relaxed and we don't answer phones! Seriously, it sounds like a little thing, but not having the phones ring incessantly is a blessing! Anyway, on with the Friday Five List:

1.   So, did everyone have a fantastic, safe and sane 4th of July weekend? I did! I got to hang out with two of the most awesome women on this earth: Darlene and Pammie Sue! We spent the 4th at Pammie's house drinking wine on the patio, chatting, snacking, and watching comedians on the iPad. Sunday we wandered around downtown SLO, did some shopping, and had lovely drinkies at Novo. It was too brief a visit, but it was super fun, and it was nice to kind-of get away from it all!

2.  It's been MUCH cooler here on the Central Coast this week, which has been a welcome relief. The past two nights I haven't even had to have my window open at night! I've been sleeping much better, I think, because of that, even though I enjoy the cool, fresh, night air, and hearing the occasional cricket or hoot owl, the traffic noises are always jarring. 

3.  So, I'm planning to buy a new all-in-one printer/scanner/copier. I have a separate printer and scanner right now, and they take up a  lot of space. I'd like to streamline my desk area a bit, so I can work on various scanning and photo printing projects. Do any of you have an all-in-one you could recommend, or have any experience - good or bad - with them? I'm mostly curious, as I've pretty much decided on this one, but if anyone has had some serious problems or issues with it or negative feelings of all-in-ones in general, I might reconsider. (Thanks in advance!)

4. So, this weekend is the Lavender Festival in Paso, but I don't think I'll go this year. I still have a lot of organizing to do at home, and while I mowed the front lawn last night, the backyard is getting a little out of hand, and might need to be tamed a bit. Also, I'd kinda like to save a free weekend for a trip to the beach, rather than just to Paso, especially considering I was just there in May for the Art Festival.

5. Here's another inspirational chalkboard message discovered at The Backyard behind Bru Coffeehouse. I'm not 100% sure what this message is supposed to convey, however. I mean, I get the "Live in the Sunshine" and "Swim the Sea", but "Drink the Wild Air"?, I'm a little confused. You can't really drink air, right? I mean, you can gulp air down sometimes when you're working out too hard, but that just makes one belchy, which isn't so much fun. Anyway, it's pretty, and, well, interesting!  I hope you all have a fantastic weekend, and I'll see you next week! Cheers!

Finally, a Friday Five in June

I have missed the last two Friday Fives - mostly because there just isn't a whole lot going on over here that's interesting enough to write about. That's not likely to change, but here are a few bits of news for you I hope you will enjoy:

1.  Two new stores have opened recently in downtown Atascadero - The Book Odyssey and Socrates Coffee House. I believe I've mentioned this before, but last Saturday when mom and I were out and about, I caught a shot of both stores opened for business.

We noticed, with much delight, that Socrates is serves Jobella coffee, which is the best coffee ever, and pastries from Hush Harbor Bakery which has the best pastries ever! So, we're pretty excited to try Socrates now!

The Book Odyssey not only sells used books they also buy used books. Really it's too bad the place wasn't opened in March when we had 12 bags of books to sell! Still, we're always working on a bag or two, so it shouldn't be too long before we're frequenting this place as well as our long-time favourite, Buckets of Books.

2.  Speaking of books and Buckets of Books, I recently picked up some new (well, new to me) books there and plan to try another book haul video this weekend. If that fails, I do have a post written up as well!

3.  And speaking of coffee houses, even though Socrates has Jobella, I'm not sure they can compete with the outdoor seating Bru Coffeehouse has (provided by The Backyard). It's comfortable and fun, filled with various plants, whimsical garden décor, and inspirational messages like this one:


4. In other news, Gobo is back up on the wall where he belongs, and hopefully he'll stay there this time!

I found the stud just a half inch away from the original hole (so annoying!!), and it feels pretty solid now. I elected not to use the Command Velcro strips, as they're so thick they push the back too far away from the wall, and they you can't get the nail in very well, which may have been the problem the first time. So we'll see. Fingers crossed!

5.  And, finally, here's one of my pretty red tea roses. Sadly the other little tea rose I had died last year, and since we're in a drought, I didn't bother planting anything else in the other pot. Hopefully next year, I'll be able to get this little guy a buddy!

Thanks so much for stopping by today! I hope your Friday is fantastic and your weekend wonderful! Cheers!

First Friday Five in June

JUNE!! How did it get to be JUNE already?!? And, not only that, but the end of the first WEEK in June! I tell you I cannot even keep up anymore!

le sigh!

Here's your Friday Five for the week:

1.  Happy National Donut Day! Pictured below is one of my favourite donut flavors: Blueberry cake!

2. Tonight is the Atascadero Art and Wine Stroll in downtown Atascadero. I'm pretty excited about it, as there are two new shops open - a coffee shop and a used book store right next door. It's always nice to see new businesses downtown! Tonight I'm planning on actually buying a pair of cross earrings at the 805 Boardshop that I saw at the last Wine Tour, and maybe a scarf at Farron Elizabeth.

3.  Tomorrow is the Central Coast Oyster Festival in Avila Beach. I still haven't decided if I'll go or not, yet. I love oysters, and it looks like a lot of fun, but I'm not a big fan of crowds and having to hunt or parking and/or hike miles and miles to a venue.  Also, I'll have just done an evening of wine tasting and walking so who knows what kind of shape I'll be in tomorrow afternoon!

4. Gobo broke again. Around 1:30 AM Wednesday I woke to a crash in my room, and after my breathing slowed down and my heartbeat returned to normal, and after I determined it wasn't an earthquake, train derailment, gas explosion, or some other natural disaster which would require me to flee the vicinity, I turned on my bedside light and discovered poor Gobo lying in pieces on the floor. I can't quite figure out how he fell, except that he really wasn't hanging on the nail at all, but just stuck with the Command Velcro picture hanging strip. Which just goes to show strong those Velcro strips really are!

5. Um, gee, I guess that's it. It was a fairly quiet week (except for Gobo) for me. How about you all? Did you have a  good week? Got any fun plans for the weekend? Let me know in the comments! Have a great Friday, everyone! Cheers!

Friday Five

OMG, you guys, I suck at updating, I know, and I'm so SO sorry! How long has it been? Two weeks? Three? I don't know, but I'm going to try to do better, I swear! Anyway, here's five random things about this week:

1. I'm sure you've all heard about our horrific and heartbreaking environmental tragedy, and truly I have nothing to add. I've just been crying. Crying.

2.  In more uplifting news, we do have a three-day weekend coming up, and I'm pretty excited because I haven't had any real time off since I took a half day on a Friday back in March. (Granted I've had other half- and whole-days off since then, but they were all for doctor's appointments so they don't count!) The Paso Arts Festival  is tomorrow, and I'm planning to take a break from organizing, tidying, and yard work to check out the art and wine and fun in the park.

3.  But, I will be back to doing yard work on Sunday! Mom and I are hoping to start decorating and getting some flowers out in pots  (Faux only this year, however, due to the extreme drought!), and setting up our chairs on the patio.

4. After spending all day Sunday last weekend putting eight more items for sale on eBay (and selling three of them!), I still have about five or six things left I've been contemplating putting on. However, I think I might just give them all to Goodwill. I really don't think they are THAT valuable, and honestly, I'm so over dealing with the hassle of selling stuff on eBay. Just thinking about it gives me huge amounts of anxiety! Seriously. I'm done.

5. And, finally, this week went by FAST! I know I say that all the time, but really, it feels like I should be heading to Kennedy tonight to get my sweat on, instead of heading to Subway for a footlong, and then home for a glass of wine and some good TV (The Mysteries of Laura, On Demand, FTW!). Still, I'm not complaining. This week was pretty good, and I accomplished a lot, so, yeah, winning!

I hope you guys have a fantastic Memorial Day Weekend (or just a great weekend, if you don't get Monday off or celebrate the holiday), and I'll see you all next week! Cheers!

Friday Five

Oh, my God, his week, you guys, THIS WEEK ... totally kicked my ass, and here are five reasons why:

1. Apologies for the TMI, but: Princess Time* arrived first thing Monday morning - a bad one this time - and shot everything to hell right off the bat. I had zero energy so I copped out of my workouts, severe pain, headaches that bordered on migraine, and general malaise. Not fun.

2. Also on Monday I had Jury Duty, which I have actually always wanted to do, but the timing of it was bad, bad, bad. I had two doctor appointments scheduled Tuesday afternoon which I ended up having to cancel because my service ran over into Tuesday afternoon, and a third appointment I had to put off until I was sure I was discharged from duty. Which I finally was, late Tuesday.

3.  I started on Humira yesterday. I got the insurance approval Monday, and called and set up the shipping, then had to wait till it arrived before calling my Dr. for an appointment. It was a lot of time on the phone, which is an anxiety-inducing activity to me after several days of increased anxiety (honestly how I manage to do phones at work is beyond me!), and the build-up to the actual shot was stressful as well. Thankfully, I got a quick and early appointment, and it turns out using the pen is not too difficult.

4.  So, as a treat to myself for all the crap I had to deal wth this week, I took myself out to Happy Hour at Giuseppe's and then to Farmer's Market. I had a delicious pomegranate martini, gorgonzola and herb stuffed mushrooms, and a small Caesar salad. Tres yum! At the market I got some blackberries, strawberries and blueberries that I hope are as good as the ones we got at the Paso Farmer's Market a few weeks ago, as well as some broccoli, avocados, and tomatoes.  I also stopped by Hep Kats downtown and picked up a couple new purses. Which, of course, means that I have to get rid of two purses I already own, which is hard because I already got rid of some a while back, so I'm really down to my keepers. Well, we'll see!

5. And finally remember a couple weeks ago I mentioned I made a video just for the heck of it? Well, I finally uploaded it tonight and you can check it out here:  

Hope you guys had a MUCH better week than I did, and will have a lovely weekend! See you Monday! Cheers!

 * Phrase originally coined by my friend Wendy, and blatantly stolen by me!

Friday Five

Hey, hi, and happy Friday! Have I even done a Friday Five this month? It feels like I haven't. I also didn't get a write up of last Saturday's Adventure in Atascadero (which wasn't so much an "adventure" as it was just wandering around, drinking wine, eating delicious food, and buying some awesome stuff.) finished, but I did get about 1o more things up for sale on eBay, five six of which I've already sold this week!  This weekend will probably be "getting rid of more stuff", which is kind of a pain, but the more stuff we get rid of, the happier mom and I are. Marie Kondo was right - if it doesn't spark joy, it's outta here!

And, it's FRIDAY, and I'm outta here, too, but before I go, here's five random things just for fun. Enjoy!

1. I actually tried something different last Friday night, and recorded a vlog. I may or may not upload it to YouTube tonight, I haven't decided. I am also not sure I'll do it again. It was kind of fun, but also kind of a lot of work. I just used the camera on my computer, and the lighting wasn't very good, either so ... I don't know. I might just stick to writing.

2. Last Saturday I purchased a small iron deer head at The Backyard behind Bru Coffeehouse, which I fell in love with the week before, and plan to hang some of my necklaces from the antlers. (That is, providing I can find a stud to hang it on in the spot I want, because, damn, he's heavy!) Also, while I was there, I saw two sets of shelves, this two-shelf  unit below, and another with just one shelf. I really like them, too - the little birds and branches fit with my woodland theme. I'm just not sure it either would fit anywhere in my room, as I'm running out of useful wall space, and also I'm afraid I would just end up cluttering them up with stuff, but I still really like them, and I might have to go back to at least measure them, and contemplate them more.

 3.  Also last Saturday, mom and I had an amazing lunch at Hush Harbor Bakery. Here's a shot of her half turkey sandwich and cole slaw. She said it was fantastic. I had the Italian (only a half, though, because they're huge!), and it was delicious!! I'm looking forward to going back and trying that turkey one myself!


4.  This weekend will be the last time I put stuff on eBay to sell. Seriously, for all the success I've had at it, I'm done! It takes a lot of my time, and while it's nice to sell something and make a little money, the mere thought of it mentally and physically exhausts me so much now, that it's really no longer worth it to me. I would much rather spend that time handstamping cards, working on my photographs (some of which I plan to sell in an Etsy shop I've set up, but who knows, it might feel too much like selling my stuff on eBay, and I might abandon the whole idea!), sitting on my patio with a cool beverage, watching a movie, going to the beach, or even just sleeping. So yeah. I mean I'll still be relisting stuff that doesn't sell for a few more months at least, but from now on, if I want to get rid of anything, it's going straight to Goodwill!

5. And, finally, when I was wondering around downtown last Saturday, I saw this cute idea for an Open sign - and a great way to reuse an old suitcase! - outside one of the many thrift stores that have recently opened up.  Have a great weekend everyone! Cheers! 

Friday Five: Oh, This Week!

I had a bit of a crazy week. Let me tell you all about it!

1. First off, there was a full moon, so we were freakishly busy at work. Lines out the door all. day. long! Every single day. Insane! I guess the new spring cleaning ritual is getting divorced!

2.  Speaking of spring cleaning, mom and I took nearly 12 full paper shopping bags of books to our favorite used book store, Buckets of Books in Atascadero on Tuesday. (Before you think I was playing hooky from work, Tuesday was Cesar Chavez Day here in California, so I had the day off legitimately!) I called the lady last week and warned her about our large donation, so she wouldn't been totally shocked! It felt so good to get rid of all that stuff!

3.  If you remember, I had a bone scan thingie done last Tuesday, and my doctor called me Monday afternoon asking me to make a follow up appointment to discuss the findings. Needless to say, I was floored, and immediately suspected the worst. Mom and I both did. We're kinda programmed for that after my dad's cancer, despite that happening over 30 years ago. So we were kinda freaking out most of Tuesday and Wednesday (They were able to fit me on Thursday, which only increased my anxiety; I've never been able to get in to see him THAT quickly!).  But the good news is ...

4.  It's nothing bad, just degenerative arthritis!! Which, yeah, sucks, considering I just don't feel old enough to have it, but it's better than a lot of things it COULD have been! So, yeah. I'm feeling pretty good today! My doctor is starting me on Humira soon, and while I'm not thrilled with having to take a medication probably for the rest of my life, I'm willing to give it a shot!

5. Finally, TGIF! Here's a shot of my freshly painted pedi with OPI Japanese Rose Garden polish. Cheers!



Friday Five: So Busy!

I am SO sorry for not posting here lately, my lovely readers, but I've been just SO DANG BUSY lately (and, as a result SO DANG TIRED), that I just haven't been able to muster up the energy to write. At this very moment, things are a little calmer, but for the next month or so I'll still be very busy, so I'm not sure how much blogging I'll get done. Still. I will try.

For now, here's a quick five-bullet update for your Friday:

1.  This past weekend, inspired by Marie Kondo's Tidying book, my mom and I tackled the den, and by tackle I mean emptied all the bookshelves, put the books that "inspired joy" in 4 plastic bins*, and put the books that didn't inspire joy in approximately 10 paper grocery bags to be turned in to the used book store. (Yes, I had a LOT of books!) Then, we went through the craft armoire and I dumped, donated, or recycled tons of blank, patterned, and coloured paper, blank cards, several containers of glitter, embossing powder, and acrylic paints, stamping and crafting magazines, and various office supplies such as glue sticks, liquid white out, paper clips, and push pins, that we simply don't need tons of.

Some of it was hard (The books! THE BOOOOKKS!), some of it was easy, but all of it was necessary, and I am feeling pretty good about my choices. I still have quite a few items I need to scan before shredding (old web articles, photocopies of craft/stamping/gardening/etc. ideas/journal snippets, and novel ideas), but this little hand-held scanner I bought for, like, fifty bucks or whatever, is doing a pretty quick job of it all!

2.  Tuesday I went to the hospital and was injected with a radioactive tracer, then had a bone scan which will hopefully show my rheumatologist exactly where all the inflammation is in my body. Which means hopefully soon I'll get a firm diagnosis and can begin treatment, and get my life back. Or not. It's entirely possible that I will NOT get my life back; that this is the New Normal, and then I'll just have to deal with it, I guess.  In any event, I'm planning to pick up a copy of my results on Saturday, and I'm curious to see what a bone scan looks like!

3. This weekend is going to be pretty busy, too, as not only do we have to take to Goodwill all the stuff we got rid of last weekend, pick up my lab results, and do all our other usual Saturday Stuff, but we have to mow our lawn as well. It looks dreadful! It's brown in places already, but other parts are wildly overgrown. Since we didn't get any rain to speak of this year, we can't really justify getting brand new sod. Also, none of our neighbours seem to give a crap what their overgrown, weed-infested yards look like (except the lady kitty-corner to us, who is also the only homeowner left besides us; everyone else is a renter.), so I guess there's no point in putting any money into it this summer. Still, it's hard to look at because it's just so ugly!

4.  Tonight is the Atascadero Art and Wine Tour, and my mom and I are going. It was supposed to be held last Friday, but at some point they changed the date, and didn't bother announcing it to anyone. (I took a half-day off work, and we planned to get a room at The Carlton Hotel downtown so we could start the Tour right at 5:30 and be able to try all the offerings from all the wineries without worrying about driving home inebriated. At first I was afraid I had just read it wrong, or I was nuts, or the dementia was kicking in early, but it turned out I was not the only one: one of my co-workers, believing it to be March 20th as well, had invited several of her friends to come down for that very event. We didn't discover it had been changed until Tuesday or Wednesday of that week, and she had to call everyone and tell them it wasn't happening.) It'll be interesting to see how many wineries, artists, and food vendors bother showing up since the two art galleries Atascadero even HAD have closed down in the past two months, and the only new stores to open are both thrift stores, and several shops have stopped participating in the past couple years. 

le sigh.

 5. And, finally, here's a picture of some books that once sat on one of my shelves. Some of them will be back. Some will not. Have a great weekend! Cheers!


*The reason the books went in bins to be stored in the garage is that we're planning to get new carpeting fairly soon, and it seemed silly to put the keeper books back on the shelf, only to have to take them down so the shelves could be moved to put in the carpet in, like, a month or so.

Recycled Friday Five

Good morning and welcome to Friday Five! This Friday Five was originally going to be for last week, but I never finished it, so I'm recycling it for this week. It's still all new to most of you since I haven't been online in, like, forever, though, so I hope you enjoy it!

1. The 12th through the 16th was a long working weekend for my mom and me, and last week was, too (although just a regular-sized, two-day weekend!), because we FINALLY received all our tax stuff so I was FINALLY able to my and my mom's taxes!! It's so frustrating to wait for certain agencies to mail out the tax info, and I hate, hate, HATE that they absolutely WON'T mail it out until the middle of February no matter how much you beg. I could've been done WEEKS ago if not for the one stupid thing! So annoying!!

2. I finished The Unintentional Time Traveller by Everett Maroon on the bus yesterday, and I loved it! I love time travel books (movies, TV shows, whatever) anyway, so choosing this book was a no-brainer. I particularly enjoyed the body-switch aspect of it and how a teenage boy deals with suddenly being a teenage girl, as well as suddenly being in a completely different time period! Apparently this is to be part of a series (as it's listed on Goodreads as Time Guardians #1), and I was originally uncertain about that, but after finishing the book, I'm really looking forward to book #2!  Of course, in the past I have been thrilled with the first book of a series only to be so disappointed in the second book that I didn't even bother with the third (or any subsequent) books.  

3.  We've had very strange weather here recently. It's gone from 70s or 80s during the day a week ago to 50s or 60s, and the past few nights have been around or below freezing! We even had a hail storm on Monday (which sadly, I missed as I was in SLO)!  Still, I've seen bright yellow daffodils, and white and pink blooming trees (not ours, yet, though), and other signs of spring around town. It's lighter in the morning when I get up, which makes it a lot easier to get up, and it's staying light later, too, and I'm loving that!

4.  Last night was the last of our first 6-week ballet-yoga sessions. There were only three of us, so it was like having a private session! (The class started with 12 and has been fairly consistent with between 7 and 10 people throughout, so I'm thinking a lot of people thought we didn't have it last night. Heck I was trying to remember if it was week six or not myself! Also I received very very VERY bad news moments before class started, so I almost baled myself. I'm so glad I went, though, because I really needed it!) I really enjoy this class, and already signed up for the next 6 weeks - which starts next Thursday! It's really hard, I can't do much of any of it well or even at all, but it's a great work out, I'm sweating by the end of it, and I feel great! Also, no one appears to be judgy about my inabilty, so that's good!

5.  And, finally, a pretty picture.

The trees downtown were blooming when mom and I were wandering around a couple weeks ago, and I couldn't resist taking tons of pictures!

So what are your plans for the weekend? Let me know in the comments! Cheers! 

Friday Five: The Forgotten Phone Edition

Good morning, and TGIF!! So, for today's Friday Five, I was originally going to list the five subjects I'm contemplating studying for the Master's Degree I would like to get, but as I arrived at the bus stop, tragedy struck! I dug in my purse for my phone so I could read the early morning FB postings of my clever and witty friends, and suddenly realized: my phone was at home still plugged into the wall!

Oh! The horror!

Yes, I foolishly took my phone OUT of my purse this morning and decided to charge it up a bit more because it only had 85% power. Now, I've done this before, actually, have remembered to grab it before leaving. Today was not one of those days.

So, I'm having a Phone-Free Friday! Ack! After my initial panic attack, I started thinking back to when I did a Radical Sabbatical during September of 2013  where I basically went tech free for 30 days. It was hard at first to not check FB, Twitter, Instagram, etc., a few times a day and all day on the weekends, but in the end, it was almost freeing. It was like living in Ye Olden Days when we didn't carry cell phones on us at all times. We called people we needed or wanted to from our home phone or a phone booth, we visited friends we wanted to interact with, or we sent them letters through the post.   

Ahhh, the good old days!

So, yeah, that was a fun experiment, but not one I really wanted to do today! It's not 1984, it's 2015, and I miss my iPhone! So, here is today's Friday Five: Five Things I Miss Because I Don't Have My iPhone Today (*sniff*):

1.  Not being able to read my friends' early morning FB posts.  I have several very creative, funny friends who post mostly fun, witty entries very early in the morning. They are very entertaining, and their posts start my day off on the right note!

2.  Not being able to check my eBay stuff, or get notifications from eBay. (eBay is not available on our computers at work. Neither is FB, Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest) It's always fun to get that little cash register cha-ching! sound when I've sold something, or checking in to see how many people are watching or have viewed my items.

3.  Not being able to take pictures. We had another gorgeous sunrise this morning, and I was unable to capture it. I was sad.

4.  Making a list. I've been making lists on the little notepad app that came with my phone. Today I have to jot things down on sticky notes like they did in the caveman days.

5.  Not being able to randomly tweet some witty, but inane tid-bit about myself or my day. For example, today's random tweet of no significance would have been:  I have long sleeve t-shirts to wear under sweaters, but did I remember to do so today? When it's cold? Um. No. I did not. Am dumb. And cold.  See? Aren't you sad you missed out on my brilliance today?

Have you ever forgotten your cell phone, or some other item of importance? How did you get along without it? Let me know in the comments! Have a great Friday and an awesome weekend! I'll see you next week! Cheers!