Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Quikblog: bleachers and wwk

"Associate with people who are likely to improve you."
— Seneca

Today, I conquered two fears.

Fear number 1: Bleachers
Sitting on bleachers is scary. Walking on or underneath them can be pretty bad, too. Running up and down bleachers is terrifying. Until today, that is. Steph B, the ultimate workout partner that she is, helped me overcome my fear of running up and down bleachers. Steph never shies away from any route or distance when we run. When I told her that I'd always wanted to try running bleachers but I was kind of freaked out by the idea, her response was simply, "I'll do them with you. It's no big deal." She led the way and I really enjoyed it.

Fear number 2: Shopping after sundown at the sketchy Shop Rite near the 'boro
No, this Shop Rite isn't populated by vampires; but, it might as well be. The first time I went to this grocery store, Betty accompanied me. We were stocking the 'boro fridge for the very first time. I kid you not, as we parked the car, Betty turns to me and says, "Don't go to this store by yourself and especially don't go here at night." That was it, zero explanation. My mother also believes that 24 hour gyms are "a mugger's paradise". Anyway, her warning stuck and I rarely went shopping there unless accompanied by broad daylight or a pack of German shepherds. This evening, I had neither aforementioned means of protection and my fridge was without soy milk due to the recent special k with red berries binge I've been on. A visit to the sketchy shop rite was a necessity and much to my delight, not sketchy at all. A sixteen year old cashier even made small talk with me about the seltzer I purchased. Yes, I know I went in for soy milk but a deal is a deal, readers.

Along with my other impulse buys, I spotted the item pictured below. I didn't buy these snacks, unfortunately. I guess I'll just have to make a repeat trip.

Have a wonderful Wednesday,

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Bedside blogging: surplusage

Sometimes I think I should sign Gretchen Rubin's name along with mine at the conclusion of my posts. Essentially this makes me the jerk in the group who texted and played Words with Friends while the smart and interesting kid did all the work.

What I'm saying is I get a lot of ideas and, I think, happiness from Ms Rubin's book and website, The Happiness Project.

A year ago, I purchased her book, The Happiness Project. Her memoir of a year spent on becoming happier is one of my favorite non-fiction reads. Wait. Move your arrow away from that X, this isn't a book review. It's Thursday night and I'm blogging from bed, noone writes anything substantial in those conditions.

On the subject of writing and Gretchen, Gretchen also produces an internet piece to her book. Her Happiness Project blog, daily newsletter, and (my favorite) daily moment of happiness are always chock full of interesting and uplifting content. It's also completely free.

Below are some reasons why GR would be my first round pick for an author fantasy league:

She writes about writing. How difficultly awesome is that? Remember, I'm duvet deep right now; a certain amount of leniency for potentially made up adverbs like difficultly is appreciated. In the past, she has posted tips for writing from famous authors like Mark Twain and Flannery O'Connor (see below):

Three of Mark Twain's Little rules for Writing:
7. An author should say what he is proposing to say, not merely come near it.

8. Use the right word, not its second cousin. *(tenth grade offenders take note: he,she,it, this, and that are all the boring second cousins noone wants to sit with at Thanksgiving.)

9. Eschew surplusage. (Peppernpoppy is a repeat offender of this rule: see the explanation of not-pants if you're wondering what I mean. If you're still not sure, google surplusage. I did. I also had to look up eschew.)

10. Not omit necessary details. (Get it?!? Oh Mr. Twain, if John Steinbeck and I weren't meant for one another, I'd seriously consider letting you take me on a riverboat picnic.)

Her Moment of Happiness daily email rocks my socks off...daily. MOH emails consist of one inspirational quote from famous authors, philosophers, and the like about happiness. This email arrives in my inbox every morning and I look forward to it. I save the especially good ones in a memo on my phone. I've used them in class, I've texted them to friends who have much better things to do, and they have proven useful and poignant in random situations.

Her emails and posts are full of useful and fun links. From links to controlling clutter and creating a budget to tumblers of interesting and calming photography, her website is a truly wonderful place to "waste time" on the interweb. Although, according to Bertrand Russell, "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."

Go on, guess where I got that one from.

My weekend looks to be filled with bleachers packed with maniacal wrestling parents, plunging v-necks and bowling shoes, and football and four-leggers. I personally cannot wait.

and Gretchen Rubin

Keally P and I are embarking on a February Photo A Day challenge, so far so fun. I was a bit late to the party so I started with Day 2. Join in!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

patience and puppets

This week was exhausting. This weekend was a great way to recharge and prepare to take on February full force. I'm a bit behind on the NYC photostory from a few weekends ago; however, to satiate your imagery appetites I've provided a quick tutorial from jennyb on glove puppetry. Glove puppets are a craft that takes patience and mastery. If you're like me, and have zero percentage of both of these skills, I've given you an alternative way to make them in the tutorial, as well.
Enjoy and if you have any patience left after this craft, use it to wait for the upcoming NYC photostory.
<3 L

Friday, January 20, 2012

Clothed...Kind Of

It's been a week since we last touched base on 30for30.
Contrary to what you may think,  just because I haven't posted doesn't mean I haven't been wearing clothes to work.
Day7 may lead you to believe otherwise.

More 30 for 30 below.

Oh, KBP wears clothes, too.
Mrs. P takes no prisoners. Weapon of choice: a combination of a pencil skirt and two cats who play video games.

Braid, Belt, Boot, and Recycle. Repeat!
The B in KBP is for Beauty and Beret.

Hip background c/o Jenny B's apt in NYC.

Somedane wanted the spotlight.


On my wrist

What exactly are not-pants?
Not-pants: noun

1) a piece of clothing to be worn on the legs as a facade for pants. Best used when wearer is feeling extremely lazy, "curvy", or has no clean real-pants.

"These not-pants are the reason I didn't get tenure!"

Not-pants take on various forms. One example is jeggings*. Jeggings often disguise themselves as skinny jeans. Tricia Gail and I have a similar pair from Target that are very convincing. The piece of apparel pictured in day7's 30for30 are a terrible excuse for not-pants. They are simply a thicker, textured legging with a vertical seam down the front of each leg.

When I confronted TG with my not-pants situation, she tried to make me feel better by saying, "They look like riding pants." That's exactly what I was going for, the "straight-from-the-barn look".

Who am I kidding? My dog is the size of a small pony and I wear denim and gingham way too frequently.  I love the straight-from-the-barn look.

Next time, I'll take some photos in a hay loft.


*Note: Jeggings are not to be confused with jorts; a very light or dark wash denim pair of shorts with a carpenter's loop. Unfortunately, no hammers rest within this loop.  Jorts usually fall far below the wearer's knees and are also referred to in some circles as the devil's hybrid.*

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thursdate with the GOAT

Recently, the only person to accompany me on my Thursdates is...well, me. This is in no way a reflection on my social life; I like to think that all of my loved ones are just itching to hang with me. So what if the last time I called Betty to share with her all the highs and lows of my day, she said, "Is this going to take long? The Good Wife is coming on."

While my one parental unit is more inclined to keep up with the career of that guy who played Mr. Big on SITC, my other has still yet to let me down.
Instead of my usual solo hangout in Panera, I spent this Thursdate with my dad. Betty was going out with her "friends from school" (when did she get those?), so the GOAT had no plans for dinner. If I could make a guess, I would wager his dinner involved leftovers in the form of kielbasa. Never good the next day. I hijacked his evening and we dined at the fine eatery that is Subway. Don't scoff, readers, the GOAT and I love Subway.

Why we love Subway:
1) The GOAT always has a coupon and we both feel like we got away with something criminal when we use it.
2) We might be the least pickiest people on the face of the earth when it comes to "eating out". If the food tastes good, doesn't take forever to make, and is relatively inexpensive; we're very happy.

Why I Love Taking the GOAT to Subway
1) He almost always gets whatever I'm getting
2) He always tries to pay and when I say no, I can guarantee that he will say with sincerity, "Thanks so much for dinner, kid. I really appreciate it."
3) He always asks me about one or two of the following people:
A) Tricia Gail's Danny: "How's Danny doing in Newark?" Danny carries a gun and loves Libby, therefore he's very interesting.
B) Lydia: "Hey, have you heard from that Harkness girl lately?" Surprisingly, Lydia is also licensed to carry a firearm; however, the GOAT loves her, ammunition-wielding or not.
C) My brother Brian: "Brian never texts me anymore, what's he been up to?" (at this point in our conversation, he usually shows me an email or text from Brian from a day or two previous at which he asks me how he can respond in a way to annoy or tease my brother.)
Recently Anthony has made the list and he's always curious to know where he is "flying to". Maybe the GOAT thinks I date a pilot or a goose?

Why this Subway Thursdate especially ruled:
Behind us in line was another, much younger Dad/Daughter Subway Thursdate going on. I don't normally have unkind things to say about this establishment, but sometimes the Way of the Sub can take a long time to make your 'wich. Daughter of said combo was around 7 years old? Probably practiced more patience than I did. She passed her time in the queue talking her GOAT's ear off about Ke$ha, her day at school, how cool it would be if Taylor Swift was her teacher, and while I didn't hear it, I'm sure sparkles or ponies were mentioned, as well. While my GOAT whistled along to the Ke$ha song playing at the Way (I have no idea how he knows this) and I eavesdropped/shot impatient looks at the dude in front of us ordering a very complicated pastrami sub, her GOAT was completely intrigued and fascinated with his child's fast-paced, take a moment or two from talking and have Dad twirl me, conversation. He also didn't miss a single twirl opportunity.

This readers, is the most important reason why I love Thursdates with the GOAT. I'm 25 years old and my GOAT still pays attention and shows interest in all my ramblings. Sadly, my conversations don't include ponies or sparkles, anymore. At least not that often, anyway.

I'm also completely confident the GOAT wouldn't miss a twirl opportunity, if I asked for one, either.

Happy Thursday,

Oh, the pic is What We Ate.

On a sidenote, when I snapped a shot of our subs, the GOAT said, "Let's send it to Brian to make him jealous."

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

30for30: day123

30for30 is back.
Long gone are the days of the myspace-youcanseemycamerainmyfullengthmirror-days.
Instead of a tripod, I use a complicated, cake-plate meets cereal bowl meets cupcake cookbook creation.

Enjoy, readers.

 Of course, a majority of my outfits have accompanying stories. Day one's ensemble prompted a student to go out of his way and say, "Now, I mean this in this most endearing way. Today, Miss M, you look like Minnie Mouse." I didn't even know my kids could spell endearing. For this impressive compliment, the next time I wear my red bicycle skirt, I think I'll wear white gloves.
 No more arrows. I'm not John Madden. What is this magenta blur you keep seeing in the bottom right corner of my photos? Is it a hip new filter? An effect? No, that's part of my makeshift cake-stand tripod mess. Get used to it.
 One last story. Last year, one of my lovelies informed me that I had a habit of dressing like a "female Ellen DeGeneres". I ran into him this afternoon. After we exchanged greetings, he looked down at my boots and said, "Those are some bad boots." I thanked him and said, "I bet Ellen wouldn't wear these." To which he replied, "No, he would not."

Stay tuned for more outfits. Keally P makes her inaugural 30for30: day123 later this week.