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8 posts from July 2011

July 31, 2011

Ch-ch-changes... (Part 2)

The biggest changes are the hardest to announce. The time shortage in my schedule has gotten so bad that I finally had to give up derby. It took months for me to make the decision and I made it reluctantly, but reviewing everything I had on my plate it was the only thing not paying a bill and as such it had to be the first to go. I don't even know if I could accurately describe how much derby has meant to me. I loved every minute of it. I've made so many friends and had some of the most incredible experiences of my life.

Pregame locker room

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(Photos by: Me, Bob Dunell & Jim Koclanes)

I retired officially almost a month ago, but I haven't walked away from the league. I'm volunteering now and won't cross skating out of my future entirely yet. I would love to be able to skate again. I just have to get my scheduling issues resolved first.

The final change I am going to address briefly. A number of weeks a go Jeff and I mutually decided to end our relationship. We reached a crossroads in our lives and realized we were going in different directions. It ended very amicably and I wish him nothing but the best. I really only mention it to prevent any future confusion.

With all of the changes that have been taking place I've been working hard to reorganize and brainstorm new ideas and projects that I'd like to work on. I have to admit, I'm pretty excited! It's the last day of July and I'm ready to start August fresh. It's my birthday month and I have a number of celebrations planned. I can't wait to share them with you!

July 29, 2011

Ch-ch-changes...

Friends, I haven't blogged in a week! I feel so lost! So many things have happened that I don't know where to start. My absence can be attributed to a number of things, too many I think, to be addressed in only one post. I'm breaking them into a few smaller posts for today and tomorrow and then we're moving forward and not looking back!

The first items I would like to address are the tutorials and giveaways. I started the year engines blazing and felt really good about the monthly giveaway and tutorial. As time wore on and my schedule picked up I frequently felt rushed for time to try to create a new tutorial and giveaway item for each month. I think the quality started to lag leading to fewer and fewer people entering the giveaways. I stopped feeling good about the material I was putting out and the feedback I was receiving. For the time being I am changing the tutorial and giveaway format. Instead of monthly editions I might switch it to seasonal. I think by allowing myself more time I will be able to provide you with better quality material and we will both win.

Next up, only because it has placed itself at the top of my conscience, I started training for a warrior dash. Have your heard of this? It's a 5k run blended with a number of grueling obstacles including, but not limited to: cargo nets, walls, immense hurdles, barbed wire, mud and fire. It's crazy!

(Images from thrillist.com.)

It also sounded like entirely too much fun to pass up. It has a 12 week training course that I started this past Monday. It's intense, and I am not a runner, but so far I think I'm doing pretty good. A surprisingly large number of my friends have signed up for the race as well (probably 15-20 in all) so I should have plenty of training partners to work with. Are you ready for the best part? Most of the contestants dress up in warrior gear to run the race and prizes are awarded for the best costume! Totally already have my costume planned out. I'm so excited!

All in all, it is only a 5k so I'm sure the running won't be an issue. The thing I'm really nervous about is the giant wall you need to climb. Like the ones you see in military training. The ones I watch other people climb while I sit back and shake my head in awe. These crafty little arms have never had the strength to complete a pull up let alone hoist my entire person over a huge wall! I'm a little nervous, but the training has only just started so hopefully come October 15th, I should have stronger arms and fewer fears.

The race training is doing a number on my sleep routine. Last night I went to the pool to swim laps for my cross training and when I got home I passed out sitting up, in my swim suit before 9. Classy. So much for catching up on my sewing. I'll post the rest of the changes tonight and tomorrow. Really can't believe I went this long without posting!

July 20, 2011

The Enemy

Last week I popped out to my garden to pick some of the jalapenos that were ripe. They've done insanely well this year and even though I only planted two plants there were dozens of peppers ready to be picked. As I made my way through the plants I noticed one pepper towards the top of one of the the plants that had been chewed. Half of it was completely gone. It was a pretty large pepper and I have a fence wrapping all the way around the garden to keep bunnies, and other small animals out. While I paused to try to figure out what could have eaten the pepper I saw something move out of the corner of my eye.

It was a tomato worm. The largest tomato worm I have ever seen.

Tomato Worm

It was as wide around as my middle finger and 1.5x as long. I instantly dropped all of my peppers and ran screaming into the house where I proceeded to lock the door and jump around in frantic circles. Not one of my finer moments.

I'm all for reptiles and I appreciate a bug at a distance as well as the next guy, but caterpillars and worms I just don't do. The round squishiness makes me cringe. I get nauseous watching them move. Ugh, *shiver of disgust* just thinking about it grosses me out. As bad as they are alive, I would imagine squashing one would be even more disgusting.

Yug.

The hand pictured in the photos belongs to my friend Chris. He was kind enough to stop by my house and remove the worm from my pepper plant. It was then relocated to my neighbors front yard safely out of range of my garden.

Do you see how there is a large segment of body towards the front of the caterpillar without any legs, allowing it to rear up in a terrifying manor? Well that's what it was doing when I first noticed it. It saw me first, reared up all creepy like, and then turned to look at me. Gah! It had a face! With real facial features! It looked like a green alien shar pei with swollen jowls. Gag. The memory of it has kept me out of my garden all this week. I might consider going back next week. Maybe, but not without back up.

July 19, 2011

Just Because

Over the weekend my friend Val sent me a link to a wedding cake that looked out of this world. Since she was already planning on visiting Monday, we decided to bake the wedding cake and eat it. Just because.

Peach Wedding Cake

It's a peach sour cream cake with burnt sugar shards and peach cream cheese frosting. The original recipe is from Kiss the Groom. I have to say, theirs is much prettier. We learned a few lessons while baking this cake and I think we could get it prettier next time. And yes, there WILL be a next time. This was hands down the best cake I have ever eaten in my life. There are sliced peaches running thick throughout the cake and fresh peach juice in the frosting. I die.

Peach Wedding Cake

It was pure summer bliss, and... there is enough left over for breakfast!

Peach Wedding Cake

July 16, 2011

What's bright and sparkly and utterly delicious?

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Check out my new post at Totally Stitchin' to find out!

Sorry I've been so quiet recently, I've had a lot going on. I do still have big news and I will posting a lot more frequently now! Hope you get the chance to enjoy the weather today. I might be spending mine pool side...

July 07, 2011

Unexpected Driving Hazards

The other day as I was driving home I decided to stop for gas. As I turned onto the street the gas station was on I was stopped by an older woman standing in the middle of the street. She was nicely dressed and seemed very out of place standing in the middle of the road blocking traffic. She was waving here arms and instructing me not to turn, but a younger man behind her signaled me to go through motioning for me to hug the right side of the road.

I figured they must have been involved in a fender bender so as I cautiously crept by I glanced over to see the damage. My jaw dropped. The other side of the road was gone. Just completely gone. There was a HUGE sink hole that had opened in the middle of the street. My pictures do not do it justice. It was easily 4 ft x 6 ft. It spread across an entire lane of traffic. I was so thankful that the other drivers were kind enough to stay and direct traffic until the street was officially closed.

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Naturally, as soon as I got gas I parked and walked back to get some pictures. I wish they looked more accurate. If a Miata had driven towards the hole without being stopped It would have coasted straight in without any part of it touching the edges. That big. You can see in the last picture how thin the asphalt was where it caved in. I'm amazed it didn't fall sooner. Crazy! I've seen sink holes in Florida, but was not expecting to see one in St. Louis. I was later told that St. Louis was built over a large network of caverns and that this is not as rare as I might think. Still made for an interesting mini adventure!

I have really big news for the end of the week. It's bitter sweet, but I'll have to post about it later. Have a great day and watch out for sink holes!

July 06, 2011

Bento #18

Veggie Bolognese & Chopped Salad:

Bento #18

Contents:

- Chopped Salad (Romaine, Carrots & Edamame)

- Veggie Bolognese (Veggie Crumbles, Bell Peppers, Red Onion, Asparagus)

My cousin Annie always makes her own pasta sauce. She starts with a couple cans of chopped tomatoes and a generous swirl of olive oil and builds from there. The sauce is a great catch all for any leftover produce in the fridge. Mine is never as good as hers. This one came close.

July 04, 2011

Happy Fourth!

I'm spending the afternoon with friends. Getting caught up on some things in the blogosphere and then heading out with a mini picnic to enjoy the fireworks. I picked up my first tiny watermelon of the summer - I know I'm a little late on this one, but I am so glad I did. It's so sweet! The absolute perfect snack for sitting out in the summer heat.

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I also finally got around to testing out those Sally nail strips. What do you think? I'll post my thoughts on them later. Do you have any fun plans for today? Try to stay safe! <3 -Kali