Saturday, January 27, 2007

It's The Weekend, So It Must Be Snowing

I woke up this morning and it's snowing. Yes, I counted it, and it's the sixth weekend in a row!

We had some decent melt-off this week since it got up into the 40s several days in a row, so I caught a glimpse of pavement on my street yesterday. But it's gone again under the fresh powder falling from the sky as I write this.

Last night Brian went to a friend's house -- the one he hasn't seen in a few months who he usually plays disc golf with -- but they can't because it's too snowy. Last night when DT called, we talked a bit about the snow, and Don, who grew up here most of his life, said he's noticing how snow weary people are here.

Yes, we've got a good case of Snow Fatigue. Every time I leave the house I have to watch every step to make sure I don't slip on ice or snow. My world view has been raised by about a foot, and it's pure white.

I told Donny it reminded me of the last winter I spent in Seattle -- 1999, when it rained for 100 days straight. Even the natives, who take rain in stride and with great pride in the Northwest, complained of being depressed. I didn't hear any actual wailing of "When will this end?" but I sensed it.

Likewise, Coloradans are pretty sick of seeing snow.

But I say "buck up". We're dwellers of the Front Range, where the going joke is "Don't like the weather? Wait 10 minutes." But I guess for now we have to wait for summer to melt this stuff away, because even more snow is due later this week.

Summer IS coming, right?

RIGHT?

Christmas Video

For those of you who want to see the Shortest Christmas Ever (But Still A Good One!) in Denver...

Sunday, January 21, 2007

A Perfect Sunday

I woke up to more...yes MORE..snow falling in the Mile High City...I actually rolled my eyes when I saw it. We have at least a foot of old snow laying around, snowshovels and our backs are beaten up enough from the past 4 weeks of snow, and here's the fifth snowstorm (or is it the 6th? I've lost count).

BUT, this isn't a whiner post.

I worked on my quilt a lot. I made a short clip of the work I've done showing the patterns I drew, and the resulting block (see below). I got all 9 blocks made and drove 2 miles in the snow -- uphill bothways, HA! -- to the fabric store to buy the stuffing for my quilt and a few extra pieces of material so I can finish the top.

Since fleece material was on sale, and it looks like another 6 months of winter, I bought some of that too. It's time to hunker down and wear fleece for the duration, I say.

But the best part of the day was coming home and just sewing, watching football in between. Sorry for the Saints, but the COLTS! What a comeback! You've got me through the SuperBowl!

Then around 5:30 as it got dark the snow started again. It was warm for snow -- 21 degrees is warm to me after the sub-freezing, even sub-zero temperatures this past couple of weeks -- and Lucy and I headed to the lake for a walk. She was positively THRILLED to get out of the house. We walked around the frozen lake, which is completely frozen except for a small patch with a very sorry looking batch of ducks still swimming in it for their little lives. Note to self: Next time we take some old bread to the lake and try and feed those little guys.

Lucy bounded all over the place. I learned a new trick with her. She comes running at me when I call her, and at full speed she comes right at me, and I bent over and threw snow right in her face. If I could hear a dog giggle, I think I would have. She ran around in a big wide circle and came back for more.

It was slick as snot out, so it was a one-trip-around-the-lake walk this time. When we approached the baseball field, just barely lit, I went back to my snowglobe existence, enjoying the walk, my dog running in circles, then headed home.

With dinner and my husband Brian home, me tired from a long walk and a good day of football and my favorite hobby -- I'd say I had a Perfect Sunday.

Quilt In Motion

Friday, January 19, 2007

Football Widow Weekend


The HIL Fantasy Football League my husband Brian belongs to is having their owner's meeting this weekend, so I won't see him between about dinnertime tomorrow and Sunday after the AFC & NFC games are over.

It's the one weekend a year when I'm a football widow...Brian leaves me to watch the games with the boys, talk football league stuff (they stop just short of a "No Girlz Allowed" sign on the front door I'm sure) and I'm left to my own devices for entertainment.

But that's more than ok.

You see, I have my own addiction -- er -- hobby. I love to make quilts, and I recently found this quilt pattern online and have started working on it. I'm almost done with the 4th of 9 blocks, and I know with a good long uninterrupted day of sewing that I could very well get the top made and be on my way to finishing it.

The cool thing is, this quilt is for US.

I've been making quilts for other people for a few years now, and haven't made one for myself for some time, so this one is for our house...and I just LOVE the patterns. Part of it is that I don't have to make any one block twice. I also love the Amish style -- plain but bright colors. I love the 3D look of this quilt, and the fact that it will go in any room in my house with the taupe & black neutrals and bright colors within. Very rarely do I find a quilt idea that leaves me inspired, and for some reason this particular pattern does.

So, Brian will do his thing this weekend, and I'll do mine. In the end, he'll get a weekend with his friends, and I'll have my geek weekend sewing.

We both get to do something we love, even if we're not together this weekend...And that's fine by me.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Silliness of Comparing Katrina to A Snowstorm

I received an e-mail from no less than three people since the Blizzards of '06/'07 started. The first time I read it, I laughed just a little, but then quickly realized it wasn't a joke at all -- but some lunatic's skewed view of comparing apples to elephants. I'm sure the people who sent it to me weren't trying to be disrespectful -- and I don't blame them -- only the jerk who wrote this.

Now, don't get panicky, I am at least going to give you a somewhat humorous response to this tripe.

Each time I read it, I responded to the senders to say I found it an insult to Hurricane Katrina victims. In no way can we compare the storms of snow that have hit Colorado to the Hurricane that devastated not just New Orleans -- which has at least garnered some media coverage (if not adequate government assistance) but MUCH more of the South -- including Alabama, Mississippi and large portions of Louisiana.

How can we compare 1600 lives lost -- 6600 missing in Katrina, to a few thousand dead COWS on the Eastern Plains of Colorado?

It started with (and I won't bother to publish it all here, but you need to get the gist of it to understand my fury):

Weather Bulletin - Denver

Up here, in the "Mile-Hi City", we just recovered from a Historic event--- may I even say a "Weather Event" of "Biblical Proportions" --- with a historic blizzard of up to 44" inches of snow and winds to 90 MPH that broke trees in half, knocked down utility poles, stranded hundreds of motorists in lethal snow banks, closed ALL roads, isolated scores of communities and cut power to 10's of thousands.

FYI:

George Bush did not come.
Jules' answer: George Bush did not come because the airport was closed and even Air Force One can't land in a blizzard when they can't see the runway.

FEMA did nothing. Jules' answer: No, but judging by some of the response for Katrina, we should count our blessings. But does a State of Emergency Count? The National Guard did come.

No one howled for the government. Jules' answer: Yes they did. We howled ad naseum that they weren't doing enough to clear the streets.

No one blamed the government. Jules' answer: Yes they did. We're still howling

No one even uttered an expletive on TV. Jules' answer: I saw one person say "Damn Snow", so yes they did. They threatened that the mayor (who's the most likeable guy since Santa Claus) wouldn't get re-elected if he didn't get the streets cleared of snow RIGHT NOW.

Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton did not visit. Jules' answer: They also did not come because the airport was closed.

Our Mayor did not blame Bush or anyone else. Jules' answer: Our Mayor is a Democrat.

Our Governor did not blame Bush or anyone else, either. Jules' answer: Our Governor is also a Democrat.

CNN, ABC, CBS, FOX or NBC did not visit - or report on this category 5 snowstorm. Jules' answer: This is ridiculous to compare a snowstorm to a hurricane.

Nobody demanded $2,000 debit cards. Jules' answer: Personally, I AM demanding a $2,000 debit card: and like many Hurricane Katrina Victims -- I am still waiting.

No one asked for a FEMA Trailer House. Jules' answer: I actually heard my boss with my own ears ask after storm #2 was bearing down on us if he could get a FEMA trailer -- so this is just not true.

No one looted. Jules' answer: People ARE stealing snow shovels because we're desperately low on supplies.

Nobody - I mean Nobody demanded the government do something. Jules' answer: This is also a lie (see above)

Nobody expected the government to do anything, either. Jules' answer: Is this guy slow? He's repeating himself now.

No Larry King, No Bill O'Rielly, No Oprah, No Chris Mathews and No Geraldo Rivera. Jules' answer: The only persons who should show up here are The Rolling Stones or maybe Jude Law: That would make me feel better. Bill O'Reilly is a lying sack anyway, so who wants him?

No Shaun Penn, No Barbara Striesand, No Hollywood types to be found. Jules' answer: This guy can't even spell Sean Penn correctly. If he wants to see celebrities this time of year, they're up in Aspen anyway.

Nope, we just melted the snow for water. Jules' answer: NOT POSSIBLE. The snow is too dry, and besides, my pipes didn't freeze, I still had water. Didn't Katrina victims have TOO MUCH WATER?!? How is this relevant?

Sent out caravans of SUV's to pluck people out of snow engulfed cars. Jules' answer: I know of no caravans. But I did get offered a ride to work by my boss, and the National Guard was pulling people off of the Boulder Turnpike in Humvees...

Families took in the stranded people - total strangers. Jules' answer: I heard this was true -- in NEW MEXICO.

We fired up wood stoves, broke out coal oil lanterns or Coleman lanterns. Jules' answer: My wood stove was not buried in 6 feet of water with snakes in it.

We put on extra layers of clothes because up here it is "Work or Die". Jules' answer: People with extra clothes on after Hurricane Katrina, DROWNED. Here in Colorado, it's called "ski gear" and even as a non-skier I have some. So what's the point between my clothes and if I "work or die"?

We did not wait for some affirmative action government to get us out of a mess created by being immobilized by a welfare program that trades votes for 'sittin at home' checks. Jules' answer: I'm still trying to figure out what an Affirmative Action Government looks like, and whether welfare has anything to do with it, and whether people sitting on their asses on welfare vote.

"In my many travels, I have noticed that once one gets north of about 48 degrees North Latitude, 90% of the world's social problems evaporate." Jules' answer: We are at the 40th parallel here in Colorado, so apparently our perfection is the statistical outlyer in this person's theory. I am also fairly sure this person has not traveled beyond the National Western Stock Show.

The world doesn't owe you a DAMN THING. Jules Answer: We don't owe these "people" anything -- RIGHT. Unless it's you or your family who's counted among the 1600 dead or 6600 missing, then I suppose you'd scream like murder.

I'd like to find the schmuck who wrote this piece of crap and go flatten his tires.

The snow is so deep he probably wouldn't even notice til he skidded out of control.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

The Pot Roast Recipe

I bought a pot roast yesterday, not knowing how to cook it. It's 7 degrees outside today, so the thought of a Sunday dinner with Mom's pot roast was irresistable.


My problem was that I couldn't remember anything except water and onion soup, and thinking that I couldn't let it run out of water because Mom would always send one of us home from church early to make sure the roast still had water in it.

So, today I called Mom and said:

"Mom, I want you to think back. WAAAAAAAAyyyyyyyyyy back."

"Uh oh," Mom said.

"No, this is easy. Remember when you used to cook?"

Laughs.

"Not really. That was a long time ago."

I told her about the pot roast plan. She said she remembered the pot roast recipe as I recall it is right on, and made a few extra suggestions to braise the meat before going in, and to put some carrots and potatoes in. She was a little sketchy about how much time in the oven, but hey, at least I got the basics.

I love my Mom. She's funny, and I love it that I have her around to call for the recipe of my childhood comfort food, even if it's for a laugh and a half-baked recipe plan.

That's CRAZY TALK!


My dear husband Brian has lost his mind.

And I can't really blame him.

I'm almost in the same predicament. I went to take a picture of the snow falling with my new camera, and realized that I already had that shot. Four weeks ago. Three weeks ago. Two weeks ago.

And here we are again.

Brian LOVES to play disc golf. It's basically playing golf with frisbees, but of course it's more complicated than that. He has "drivers" and "putters" and a disc golf bag I bought him for his birthday with a towel hanging off of it.

You might think it's not a big sport, but that's where you'd be wrong.

Frisbee golf is huge. It's an environmentally friendly sport too -- instead of manicured courses, disc golf courses can be set up in city parks, and players play 18 holes just like regular golf.

There's even a Professional Disc Golfers Association (click on the title of this blog if you want to see their web site).

With courses around the world -- Brian even found one near Paris when we traveled last year -- he LOVES the game, and has drawn his friends into it.

The running joke was that Brian would wake up Saturday mornings and do his "chores" -- he'd clean the house with all sorts of energy, then the phone would ring late Saturday morning, and invariably it was Donny or Scott or Matty looking to play.

So let's get back to why my poor husband has lost his mind.

Last winter, he played almost every weekend. Last summer he played every weekend -- sometimes twice.

Then out of the blue this morning, he said "I think I'm going to sell my discs on eBay".

There was a moment when I thought "He's gone nuts." But then I realized why he said it.

Today, for the fourth or fifth weekend in a row, it's snowing, it's cold, and Brian can't go play.

The weather outside looks more suitable for polar bears than people, again.

So I guess I'm not the only one looking outside and saying "ENOUGH ALREADY!"

Monday, January 08, 2007

Another Reason To Love Colorado

I have to say, in between snowstorms (we had one last Friday and apparently are getting a brutal hit this Thursday with subzero temperatures and more snow), I love reading my newspaper, I love reading the stuff that comes out of Colorado politician's mouths.

Bill Ritter, our new state governor, and a Democrat, recently took office and has been filling his cabinet with lots of people with oodles of experience that he doesn't really have.

So, the comments about who he's choosing?

Let's start with former Gov. Dick Lamm, who was quoted in today's Rocky Mountain News: "Appointing people is like eating mushrooms out of your backyard. You really don't know how it turns out until you've done it."

OK, that's funny. And true, I suspect, although I've never been elected governor, nor one to eat mushrooms of any kind, in the wild or in the more tame areas of the north side of my house where they spring up now and then.

Ritter did choose a Republican to head Public Safety, but Peter Weir is from Golden, so I doubt he leans too far to the right, but then you can't find a Republican from Boulder at all, so I guess he must be at least a drop in the diversity bucket of Ritter's team.

But the other funny quote was about Human Services appointee Karen Beye, who Lt. Gov. Jane Norton said "She's very good, very customer-oriented, a real pro. But don't make this too glowing, she's a Democrat, dammit."

You know how I hate it when people mince words. C'mon guys, tell us how you really feel.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

See No Evil, Speak No Evil, Hear No Evil. Thanks for the Webcam Mom!

Mom gave me a webcam for Christmas. A fine toy this is. I was already a smartass, now I'm a smartass with a camera, so if there's anyone left on the planet with an internet connection who doesn't already know it: Here's the proof.

Here's my test of my new webcam. Aptly titled:

See No Evil, Speak No Evil, Hear No Evil.




Now, I just need to define Evil. But I'm pretty sure it doesn't involve my sticking Kleenex in my ears!

Monday, January 01, 2007

2007 Is Here!

This was the picture of the night. This is my friend Concetta, whose fabulous smile is always good for a picture. But I was especially pleased last night as I shot pictures with my new camera of our party, and later was looking through them and came across this one.

Last night, the party was at our house. Brian and I have hosted New Year's here for a few years now, and it's always a pleasure to have a bunch of our friends over, and a few new ones.

Despite my having a brutal cold, I medicated it well with a few White Russians.

The kids who came played with Brian's XBox, and one of them, who loves hockey and therefore has a fascination with Canada, found out Brian was Canadian, and got Brian to pull out his passport so he could see it.

Overall I'd say we had a great time.
In looking back over 2006, I can't gush that the year was the greatest year of my life. It was very bittersweet since it started with our surprise pregnancy with Jacob, and in the middle we suffered his birth and loss.

Thank you everyone, who've stood by us. I hope 2007 is kinder to us in some respects. While I wish things had turned out differently for us in 2006, I'm glad for what we did get from this past year. Along with a short time with our son, we also received the great gift of good friends and closeness of family.

May 2007 be good to you too.

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