Archive for the ‘Randomness’ Category

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Summer’s Nook

I know I’ve had the domain name for a while, but anyone who is still using summersnook.wordpress.com will have to change it.

My new place is a little unkempt for now but I’m working on it.
See you over there!


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So from the comments in my last post it appears we are fairly evenly divided on musical preference. That got me curious – just what kind of music do you all like?

While I enjoy watching American Idol, I have never and probably will never buy a CD that any of those contestants put out. They’re talented and I love hearing their unique voices but, and even in spite of their supposed different musical styles, they pretty much all end up producing what I call pop “fluff”. And while pop fluff may be catchy, it’s not what I consider “good” music (ouch! don’t hit me!)

Of course I’ll still listen to and sing along with it on occasion (Shania, Ace of Base, ABBA), but it doesn’t impress. For one, I like the whole package. Not just an impressive singer, but one who writes their own songs and won’t conform to ideas of popular music just to make a buck. That’s why I loved Jewel so much when she first came on the scene. I loved her folksy voice and the beauty of a solo guitar accompaniment. Then the overwhelming background noise along with the conformity of typical pop song beats made their way into her music and transformed her into just another cheesy pop queen.

So, while I do enjoy your average pop and rock from time to time, I really love and appreciate music that is off the beaten path. Anyhow, here is a list of some of my current and all time favorite artists and bands:

*Sufjan Stevens – The first time I heard him all I could think was, “I’ve never heard anything like this before.” My favorite Album is Illinoise
* Beth Gibbons – I love her album, Out of Season. I enjoy that Beth changes her voice from song to song. It’s very cool.
* Iron & Wine – Love this guys soft but distinctive voice
* Wilco – I’ve heard every album and I’ve loved every song. These guys stay awesome even with all the evolving they’ve done. My personal favorite song at the moment is Side with the Seeds. I love to blast it and feel the energy from the guitar solo. It’s awesome!
The Cranberries – I loved this band since I was in Junior High and still listen to my favorite Album of theirs, No Need to Argue.
Jaymay – I just discovered her this week, though I can’t remember how. But I’m hooked.
Depeche Mode – Loved them since I was a teenager, and some of their songs still give me chills. Synthesizers aren’t usually a good thing, but these guys know how to make it work.

There’s plenty more but that’s a good start. So what do you like to listen to? Any artists or bands you recommend?

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Um, how do you end up with a bruise like this….

…and have no idea how you got it?


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Taken from the 102nd floor of the Empire State Building

“The city of right angles and tough, damaged people -Pete Hamill

Well, my mother and I must have been there on a good day because we didn’t run into people any meaner than I was already use to in this trashy city o’ mine, which shall remain nameless. 🙂

So, some of you may have noticed I’ve been rather sporadic in my commenting of late and it’s because I’m still adjusting to life without my wonderful momma. She flew out and stayed with us for a week and oh, was it wonderful! I miss her terribly and I long for the interactions my children don’t get to have with their extended family members. So a visit is always a wonderful thing.

Yes, a visit from my mom means a date night or two with my husband. It means running to the store for something I forgot without having to drag all three kids out too. It means late nights spent playing Boggle, Cribbage, Rummikub and Take Two. And this year it meant taking a day trip to New York City, just me and her. I’ve lived within doable driving distance for 6 years and finally I made it, with my mom who had never been there before either.

Riding the Ferry out to Liberty Island. (Gosh I hope I look as good as my mom does when I’m 50)

At Ground Zero

This is Trinity Church, which was not a stop on our agenda but we happened to walk by it and it sucked me in. Some of you know I am an avid genealogist and am obsessed with love old church’s and cemeteries. This church and cemetery is smack dab in the middle of the city yet it seemed so tranquil there. I was in heaven looking at the ancient headstones (ca. 1700’s) and the architecture inside and out is breathtaking.

Here we are after hiring a bicycle taxi which I highly recommend, as they can veer in and out of traffic and if you love feeling a, gentler than a car with the top down, wind in your face. We had a blast on our short little ride.

Just a small portion of Times Square, from the seat of our bicycle taxi.

We had a great time with gramma around and a fantastic day in New York City!


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So? Did you do it? Did you take the challenge? Did you reconnect with your long lost self? *Which in my case happens to be 20 pounds thinner yet far more insecure*. If you did take the challenge, I want to know about it. Tell me you all did something? Play along and save me from feeling sheepish! Oh, and I took my own challenge in case you were wondering. Here’s my scoop:

Four months ago I started exercising. I started very slowly, as in 2 or 3, twenty five minute cardio sessions per week. For two months I did this, knowing it probably wouldn’t lose me any weight but wanting to feel more fit and build stamina. Two months ago I upped it to four days per week and began adding some target specific toning sessions (ah, but the stomach will never be the same again no matter what I do). I also began substituting the majority of my sweet cravings with low fat vanilla yogurt.

You can imagine my disappointment then, when with the addition of exercise and slightly better diet in my life I saw the scale staying at 140. I pondered how this could be, very discouraged. But then it came to my attention that sometimes nursing mothers have a very difficult time dropping the pounds. I don’t know if there is scientific fact behind that, but most of the nursing mother’s I’ve talked to say they really couldn’t lose all the weight until after they had finished nursing. So I decided to wean the Angel girl.

WAIT! Lest you think I’m a truly selfish mother, I’ll have you know that Angel girl is 13 months old and I had been wanting to wean her for a few weeks prior to learning that weaning might help me achieve my weight loss goal. It was more than I ever hoped for to be able nurse her for a full year, but it was definitely time for us. I knew that when I realized she was using me more as a pacifier than as a source of nourishment. 😉

So on May 12 I cut out one feeding. On May 14 I cut out another feeding. On May 15 I cut out another feeding. On May 16 I nursed my darling baby for the last time and it was so bittersweet. But the adjustment for both of us has gone remarkably well. She loves her sippy filled with whole milk just fine and I’ve had very little discomfort in the way of engorgement.

In addition to weaning this last week, I put on a little bit of make up every day. I also upped my workout to 5, thirty five minute cardio sessions (plus I’m still doing the target specific toning). Even though I haven’t lost weight I feel fantastic and have so much more stamina than I did four months ago. But here’s hoping I am finally on the way to a slimmer me!

Click on and sign the Mr. Linky below to tell me about what you did this last week to reconnect with the woman inside.


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The Good – My mother flew into town yesterday and will be with us for the week. Yay!

The Bad – Count Dooku appears to have an allergy to something. Lately his eyes have become very red and itchy at random. Today though he really scared me when after a 28 minute drive he got out of the car and I saw his eyes had become slits. The lower lid on both of his eyes were each so puffed up, they looked like there was something stuffed inside of them. We’re waiting for a blood test to tell us if it’s something seasonal or if it’s the hamster. If you have any suggestions to help him in the mean time (besides Benadryl which didn’t do much besides making him sleepy) it would be appreciated.

The Ugly – That monthly visitor of women reared her ugly head yesterday after a 1 year 9 month break. Woe is me!


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Men and Make up

If you read my recent purse post, you may have been able to surmise that I am very much a girl of the Au Natural mindset when it comes to makeup. This doesn’t mean that I won’t brush on some eye shadow and mascara from time to time, but that is as far as making myself up goes. My lack of wanting to make myself up stems from a very early dislike of my gender in general. I dealt with some very mean girls in elementary school, starting in the third grade and decided right then that I wanted to be nothing like them. This meant doing the opposite of everything they did. So I refused to wear makeup, played baseball with the boys at recess and caught bugs and worms to dangle in their screaming faces after recess. How charming I was! But I digress.

I married a man who hates make up more than I ever did. Not just on me but on the female population as a whole. When I comment on how pretty a face we just saw on TV is, he’ll correct me by saying she wasn’t necessarily pretty, just made up (if she was). For him, made up in any way is not very attractive, though the woman beneath the make up may be.
For me, made up is pretty as long as it is not overdone. I did remind him that you can be wearing make up and still look very natural and beautiful and he conceded that yes this could be true. Half the time the silly boy can’t even tell that I’ve put mascara on, so either my trying to accentuate my lashes so my eyes look half alive, isn’t working after all or he’s just not as put off by it as he claims.

Hubby has promised me with a passion that if I ever decide to wear lipstick, he will not kiss me while it is on. Whether it be the kind that won’t come off on other surfaces or not. The thought of his lips touching the stuff, or his hands touching a face with even a tiny layer of base gives him the heebie jeebies.

So now I ask you, how does your husband feel about make up? Or if you’re a man (though I honestly don’t think I have any male readers), how do you feel about make up?


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