• B reviews,  Buddies,  Bug,  house stuff!,  I forgot to tell you this earlier,  place holder posts,  the sticks

    odds and ends


    I have a bunch of odd things to share but not really a whole blog post worth of content for any one subject. So how about I do a catch-up brain-dump that will probably end up being pretty long?

    Alrighty! I love it that you are so agreeable.

    First up: Summer is here. I guess it’s technically still Spring but we’ve definitely been enjoying bathing suit and flip flop weather both at the beach and out in the sticks. I turned on the swamp cooler for the first time last week and felt terribly guilty. Like I should wait for it to really be sweltering or something.

    I LOVE the swamp cooler. It must bring back memories from my childhood or something, though I don’t think we had one when I was a kid. There’s just something so comforting about the cool air and that funny swampy smell. I love it. I also love that you don’t have to stress about keeping all the doors and windows closed, which is really key when you have dogs and kids who like to come and go like they were born in a barn.

    drive right in!

    I never showed you the wicker set my mom picked up at an estate sale for forty bucks a while back. What a steal. She’s letting me borrow it until she gets her other house fixed up to live in. Yes, my mom has another property. I don’t know if you keep up on the family soap opera but my brother and his family used to live there but they moved out and now it’s vacant. My mom will probably be moving back in a few months and we’re all kind of dreading it. It’s been really nice having her next door.

    Anyway, wicker! Right in my driveway! It’s like I can drive right into my living room!

    wicker chillaxin'

    It’s a nice spot for for relaxing and talking to the neighbors who might be afraid of the dogs. All the other outdoor patio seating areas I have are in my yard where the dogs run free and sometimes those dogs can be downright pesky, especially when they like to jump on you (Spreckles) and snarl and growl (Holly).


    fairy bug

    It’s also a nice spot for taking pictures. The fiberglass siding provides a nice soft-box effect for taking photos. Too bad it’s about eleven-hundred years old and not very photogenic itself. I don’t know exactly what it’s made of but there are these little fibers that are coming lose from it and the birds like to pull that off to make nests. I hope it’s not poisonous to them.

    what is this stuff called? Holly

    What is this stuff called anyway? I tried googling fiberglass siding and that wasn’t it at all. Maybe it’s no longer used. I don’t know.


    Since I’m talking about my driveway patio, how about a picture of my crunched-up car? Isn’t that sad? I backed into someone in the bank parking lot. I could swear it’s more her fault than mine but I have no proof. We both backed into each other at the same time like so:

    crash diagram

    She was in a big giant SUV and didn’t see me. I don’t know why I didn’t see her. I was going really slow, just creeping out when I heard this big BOOM! I stopped, put my car in park and jumped out of the car. And while I’m there jumping out, she was still moving and about to hit me again. Why? I guess she just didn’t even know I was there. Of course I yelled and screamed and she stopped backing up just in the nick of time before she was about to run over my body that was thinking about jumping in between our two cars. I don’t know why I thought putting myself in the way was a good idea but I felt so helpless and of protective of my poor little car.

    this is a very bad thing
    (This is a very bad thing.)

    I really wanted to hate the lady in the big SUV but she was so nice. She gave me all her insurance information and her phone numbers. She seemed genuinely concerned when I told her my husband was going to kill me when he saw the dent.

    Poor Toby. I don’t know why he bought me this car. I did pay for a big chunk of it myself from freelance jobs but if it had been up to me I would have bought more of a clunker that could handle nicks and dings without feeling like I’ve damaged a collector’s item. It’s so sad. I’ve got dings on all sides. I look like I’m a drunk driving by Braille. Only two of them are my fault though. The rest is beach parking. Stupid tourists.

    Anyway! I’ve got a call into my insurance agent and I think it should work out. Thankfully it’s only the bumper and not the frame. My dad says I could get an auto body shop to just punch it out for $100.

    Next up! Easter Party!


    I know, this is old news. I’m so sorry. I meant to type up a whole post about Easter because my new best friend across the street put so much time and effort into it. It really deserves a post all on it’s own. But it’s old news now so I’ll just wrap it in right here. Sorry Wendy!

    We had a lot of fun. I have to say this neighborhood we live in is pretty great. If you want to see all the pictures, click here for flickr and click here for facebook. If you aren’t a friend, email me and I’ll friend you. I’m always accepting friend applications. Just kidding. Though it is pretty funny how we call everybody friends these days.

    My uncle was giving a little Sunday School talk at meeting (church) a week ago and he told how an acquaintance of his kept emailing him asking if he’d be his friend on facebook. Well, my uncle has no use for facebook. He doesn’t have time for that kind of stuff. He has a big family, a pretty busy job etc etc… So finally after the fifth or sixth email from this guy, my uncle just got on the phone and dialed him up. Of course this friend wasn’t there so he left a message saying, Why don’t we get together and have lunch sometime and catch up like real friends?

    You guessed it, the wanna-be friend never called back. But sure enough the emails requesting friendship kept coming. So pretty much the moral of my uncle’s story was, be careful who you associate with because often friends don’t really want to be your friend. They just want to keep track of you! I kind of smiled sheepishly through out this whole message.

    "me and my friend Olivia"

    Since we’re talking about friends, here’s some of Bug’s artwork of her and her friend Olivia. They’re best friends in preschool. I hear all about Olivia every day. I’m learning all about peer pressure already. Bug wants to wear everything Olivia has. Olivia has Twinkle Toe Sketchers, a layered skirt and little bow-thingys in her hair. So now Bug does too. High school, here we come.


    I also liked this picture. It’s algae of course. Didn’t you know? We learned all about algae because I have my homepage set to Bing and that was that day’s picture. Everyday they put up a really cool photo with interesting links. I don’t love Microsoft products but I do have to say this is a pretty neat feature. Bethany turned me onto it.

    Liquid Web Guy

    This is the Liquid Web Guy. If you like them on twitter or something like that they send you one of these toys in the mail. It’s kinda cool. Of course Bug broke his arms off the day after he arrived but it’s a pretty neat toy if you don’t try to make him do gymnastics with his massive 24-hour-support arms. I’m still really happy with their web service and hey, a free toy!

    What else do I have around here to share?

    Apparently Spreckles won a bake sale. That’s newworthy. Though my film-making skills are not.

    evil smurf

    My silly kid.


    Lastly (or near the last…I think I have two more things after this) we ran a race this weekend! And this is the only picture I have to show for it that I took with my non-smart phone. I left the big camera at home because I didn’t want it banging against my hip while I ran and my small water-proof point-and-shoot was dead which it is a lot these days since I’ve misplaced the charger. This is what happens when you get new bigger better camera. The old one gets neglected.

    Anyway the race was a bit of a bust because I didn’t read the instructions carefully and I missed it! It was at 7:15 in the morning and I was parking about that time. The whole place was a crowded and I had no hope of getting to the starting line on time. By the time I got to registration, it was well on it’s way and I was lost. I called my friend Calee, who was also running the race, and she said I could just come with her on the 9:30 walking 5K instead. That sounded good to me since I haven’t really been working out much lately and I was not really ready to run a race anyway. I had Bug with me. She was going to stay with her dad during the race but things got complicated and she ended up coming with me instead.

    Long story short, it was a good twist of events because the race turned out to be a massive kid zone with five or six bounce houses, a petting zoo, trampolines, live music and face painting!!! Wooo to the hoooo! But the best part is that when Bug got her face painted and the lady did kind of a bad job. How can that be good you think? Well…Bug wanted a butterfly that took over her whole face (We might be a bit spoiled.) and the lady did a pathetic pink “x’ between her eyes. It was so sad. I could see Bug’s disappointment when she looked into the mirror so I politely asked if I could take a hand at painting. It was a bit forward of me to ask and I’m so happy that the face painter didn’t take it personally. But I’ve been dying to be a face painter since forever and I knew I could do a better job. So I did!

    It didn’t turn out that great but I know if I practice more I could do a lot better. I’m really serious about becoming a face painter. Just wait and see!

    I think that’s my last picture. But I do want to share that we are going to Disneyland on Thursday and if anybody has any hints/tips for us I’d love to hear them. I realize not many people will make it this far down in the post but if you did, please share! This will be Bug’s first time to Disneyland outside of that time I took her when she was one. Remember this movie?

    We are all so so so very excited. The water ball probably won’t blow her mind like last time but the princesses will. Unfortunately, she’s still a midget in the height department and not 42-inches tall yet so a lot of the rides will still be off limits but I think we’ll manage.

    moppin' usa

    And lastly! (for reals this time) I’ve got a mop post up on my review site. This one is a good one. I really really like this product. If you’re the mopping type, you might too! Especially since you can win $100 and a free mop if you’re lucky!