Thursday, February 26, 2009

First the good news. I think I managed to kill another mouse.

Now the bad news? I'm pretty sure it died in my walls. My advice? Dont come to dinner at my house any time soon.

I'm pretty sure a big ole monkey at work that has been keeping me up at nights has been lifted . . . I'll know for certain by tomorrow afternoon.

Tomorrow would have been the big girl - Hanna Banana Louise's - 9th birthday. I miss you Nanners!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Thanks to Edit for turning me onto Charlie Huston's Henry Thompson trilogy: Caught Stealing, Six Bad Things and A Dangerous Man. I've read the first two, and have really enjoyed them. "Hank" was a burned out former athlete bartending in NYC, when his neighbor asks him to watch his cat. Next thing, Hank has been beat to within an inch of his life by 2 tough guys, and his life unravels from there.

The writing style is noir - fast paced and witty, and even as Hank gets dragged into doing many, many bad things, you can't help but like and root for him.
Other weekend highlights include: knitting myself a hat, working on my sweater (which fits really well now that I removed the five extra inches of fabric from the back), and visiting a local nursery.

I bought three new plants, all attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds, and planted them around the house. The nursery is always filled with Monarch butterflies, and I hope to attract a few to my neck of the woods. I do have some concern that the 50 birds that live around my house may eat all the caterpillars before they ever get a chance to cocoon, but such is the cycle of life.

I came home Friday night to find a dead mouse in my kitchen, so apparently, some of the poison is getting to where it needs to be. I also came in to my kitchen on Saturday night to find a mouse eating the dog's food out of her bowl. My favorite though is when I can hear the mice bickering with each other.

Didn't watch the Oscars, but I'm glad Heath Ledger won. I'm so behind on movie watching that Dark Knight was the only film relevant to the Oscars that I've seen.

Monday, February 16, 2009

So, I bought myself a few things for Valentine's Day, with the emphasis on "pretty" - a pretty photo album with an embroidered cover, a pretty pair of hand painted reading glasses, a book of brightly colored pretty quilts to make, and the fabric to make this one - - the Garden Rainbow Quilt:

I had a nice Valentine's Day - lunch with Edit and LA, and then Sam and I stopped in the local pub for wine, beef jerky and some good local music.

Sunday was a lazy day, and our neighbor came by for a few hours of knitting on Sunday afternoon

Man, was it pouring hard this morning. Stayed in, watched videos from Netflix and Graboid, actually got some work done, actually got some knitting done, got some cooking done, and spent time with my little buddy.

It's going to be a busy week . . .

How was your weekend?

Friday, February 13, 2009

I think I'm pretty critter friendly. I re-habbed and released Elmo, a mouse that Hanna caught a few years ago and tried to turn into a squeaky toy, and I fed and cared for Buddy, the baby starling, until I could get him to a wildlife rehab person.

But the mice living at my house are just laughing at me.

I get up about 4 am, woken by the noise of the mouse party going on outside my bedroom door. I turn on the light on the back deck, only to piss off the three mice that I actually saw. Apparently, they like to climb up into this metal, 3 dimensional sculpture on the back wall of the deck. This makes alot of noise. When the lights went on, one mouse emerged, gave me a dirty look, and dropped to the ground. I could hear another mouse in the sculpture, and a third mouse dropped into a potted plant and started squeaking at me.

That's right, I was being sassed by a small, black mouse. Frankly, I don't think I have to tolerate backtalk.

I think they are immune to the poison I've put out (and that they seem to eat), and not all of of them are dumb enough to enter the Victor Electronic tunnel of death.

Sam aspires to be the great mouse hunter, but without much (or any), success. Could a cat be in my future? Or will I just then venture into the world of Tom and Jerry?

And we know who always won that battle . . .

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wild Kingdom comes back to Casa Diane

Long time readers of Nanners and Noodles (hi, la!), will recognize the Victor" Electronic Rat Trap. Cold weather has been driving the beasties into the house, and the last 2 nights have resulted in 2 less mouses in the world. What I can't manage to eliminate is the rat that I can hear out on the deck at night . . .

Oh, and when I got home Monday night and opened the front door, I was greeted by a mourning dove in my living room. I did manage a successful catch and release.

I know I get cranky with work stress, but these are the news stories that are bugging me . . .

The Michael Phelps pot story. He's a college age guy who has devoted years to training. Does anyone really begrudge him a toke or two? C'mon now.

The crazy octuplet lady. The doctor who implanted 8 embryos should lose his license. Humans aren't meant to have litters.

On the good news side of things . . .

I'm making progress on my sweater


And I'll go to the islands at least 14 lbs. less than last year!

And I got word today that I got a really good result for a client!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Koala rescued from Australia's wildfire wasteland

By ROHAN SULLIVAN, Associated Press Writer Rohan Sullivan, Associated Press Writer 1 hr 40 mins ago

SYDNEY – It was a chance encounter in the charred landscape of Australia's deadly wildfires: A koala sips water from a bottle offered by a firefighter.

David Tree noticed the koala moving gingerly on scorched paws as his fire patrol passed. Clearly in pain, the animal stopped when it saw Tree.

"It was amazing, he turned around, sat on his bum and sort of looked at me with (a look) like, put me out of my misery," Tree told The Associated Press on Tuesday. "I yelled out for a bottle of water. I unscrewed the bottle, tipped it up on his lips and he just took it naturally.
"He kept reaching for the bottle, almost like a baby."

The team called animal welfare officers to pick up the koala Sunday, the day after deadly firestorms swept southern Victoria state.

The koala was in pain but recovering with antibiotics, Jenny Shaw of the Mountain Ash Wildlife Shelter told Melbourne's The Herald Sun newspaper.

Despite her gender, the now famous koala is nicknamed Sam.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

It's been a good weekend.

Both my mom and I worry that my brother doesn't eat right, so I've been doing some cooking and sharing it with him. Today's recipes were awesome: Moroccan Chick Pea Chili; Slow Cooker Angel Chicken; and Toffee Blond Brownies. I'd recommend any and all of them!

Remember that gray sweater that I should have done by now?

Well, Friday I had to unravel the entire sweater (except for the sleeve), and start over again. Knitters know this as "frogging;" because you have to rip-it, rip-it (ribbet, ribbet). I went to my local yarn store to pick up some yarn to use to teach a gal at work how to knit a scarf. Her mom is bravely battling cancer, and her sister will pass soon (she has Down's Syndrome and a lot of health problems), and she needs something to help relieve the stress. Even when I have to frog 3 weeks of work, I still love knitting, and I hope she will too.

Of course, while I was there, I bought some gorgeous yarn for myself too . . .

The weather has been hit or miss all weekend, but we finally got in a long walk today. Here, Sam wonders how she can catch the seagull flying above her.

How was your weekend?

I saw this on Auburn Kat's Blog and thought that it would be fun to fill out. I've bolded the things that I have done.... and placed italics on those I haven't done, but would like to!

1. Started your own blog

2. Slept under the stars

3. Played in a band

4. Visited Hawaii

5. Watched a meteor shower

6. Given more than you can afford to charity

7. Been to Disneyland

8. Climbed a mountain

9. Held a praying mantis

10. Sang a solo --- Even though it was with a couple of other kids in elementary school, I'm counting it=)

11. Bungee jumped

12. Visited Paris

13. Watched a lightning storm at sea

14. Taught yourself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child - have not, but who knows what life will bring my way?

16. Had food poisoning

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty

18. Grown your own vegetables

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France

20. Slept on an overnight train

21. Had a pillow fight

22. Hitch hiked

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill

24. Built a snow fort

25. Held a lamb

26. Gone skinny dipping

27. Run a Marathon - How 'bout I shoot for a 10k first?

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice

29. Seen a total eclipse

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset

31. Hit a home run

32. Been on a cruise

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person

34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors

35. Seen an Amish community - no, but I have seen a Shaker community

36. Taught yourself a new language

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person

39. Gone rock climbing

40. Seen Michelangelo's David

41. Sung karaoke

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt

43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant

44. Visited Africa - going to Botswana is high on my list of things to do

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight

46. Been transported in an ambulance

47. Had your portrait painted

48. Gone deep sea fishing

49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling

52. Kissed in the rain

53. Played in the mud

54. Gone to a drive-in theater

55. Been in a movie

56. Visited the Great Wall of China

57. Started a business

58. Taken a martial arts class

59. Visited Russia

60. Served at a soup kitchen

61. Sold Girl Scout cookies

62. Gone whale watching

63. Got flowers for no reason

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma

65. Gone sky diving

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp

67. Bounced a check

68. Flown in a helicopter

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial

71. Eaten Caviar

72. Pieced together a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades

75. Been fired from a job

76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London.

77. Broken a bone

78. Been on a speeding motorcycle

79. See the Grand Canyon in person

80. Published a book

81. Visited the Vatican

82. Bought a brand new car

83. Walked in Jerusalem

84. Had your picture in the newspaper

82. Read the entire Bible - I keep starting the "Bible in One Year" that divides the Bible in 365 parts, each consisting of Old Testament, New Testament, psalms and proverbs, but I have yet to get past January. Genesis is kind of dreary . . . begat, begat, begat

86. Visited the White House

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating

88. Had chickenpox

89. Saved someone’s life

90. Sat on a jury

91. Met someone famous

92. Joined a book club

91Lost a loved one

94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake

97. Been involved in a lawsuit

98. Owned a cellphone

99. Been stung by a bee

100. Read an entire book in one day

Thursday, February 05, 2009

So - I had a busy morning working at home, and didn't head out for a walk with Sam until nearly noon. We get way down in Bolsa Chica a couple miles from home, and it starts to rain. We take cover at a closed snack shack, and are soon joined by a strange man wearing a back pack and carrying his sleeping bag in a bucket.

He claimed he was a life guard for 26 years and that he could still swim out to the oil platforms -with me on his back. He also mentioned that whenever it starts to rain, he returns to his home in Monterrey. Apparently, he travels on a special coach that can go from Long Beach to Monterrey in 2 hours.

I could deal with all this - although I was sort of ignoring him and checking email, except to tell him that the closest beer store was about a mile away - but then he told me he had just washed his beard this morning, and wanted me to smell it.

We gave up waiting out the rain, and got soaked walking home.

There is nothing Sam hates more (ok, maybe except getting her nails clipped and going to the Vet's), than being in the rain. Here she tries to recover from the trauma of getting wet.

Here is my project for the latest Knitters for Obama service project. As you may know, our president has called for Americans to re-dedicate themselves to serving others. We're knitting (and crocheting, sewing, quilting) for the Mattaponi native american tribe in Virginia. I'll be knitting in a 2 year old size. Even better, this is yarn and a pattern I already had in my stash.

I'm still working, but it's mindless stuff, so I'm also enjoying a Harp beer - cheers, all!

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

These are the things I'm totally diggin' these days -

  • lots of flowers growing along the path in Bolsa Chica, like these daisies
  • Coffee Mate's Italian Sweet Cream creamer
  • my new coffee maker with the insulated pot that keeps coffee hot and so much more tasty than keeping the pot warm on a hot plate
  • - I can download episodes of my favorite BBC tv shows that haven't been released yet in the US, and recent movies, like Quantum of Solace
  • going for long walks with a book on tape playing on my iPhone and with my little buddy Sam
  • that both Sam and I are slimming down
  • eReader that lets me read books in the dark in the morning while I'm drinking my yummy coffee and still snuggling under the covers
  • that Freddy is eating his seed mix, even if he still treats his highly nutritious pellet mix with disdain
  • recent home improvements that make such a huge difference
  • that Psych, Burn Notice and Flight of the Conchords are back on tv
  • that I know I am blessed in so many different ways

What are you diggin' these days?

Sunday, February 01, 2009


Springsteen and the E Street Band did a great job at half time! I first saw Bruce and the E Street Band in 1982, and they still have the same energy and enthusiasm.
The Steelers are winning, in part due to a great end of half play by Steelers' linebacker James Harrison, who intercepted a Kurt Warner pass, so I'm able to enjoy the game . . . for now.
Before the game, they showed part of an interview with President Obama. He enthusiastically announced his support for the Steelers, pointing out that Steelers owner Dan Rooney "didn't just endorse me. That guy was going to steel plants, campaigning for me." He also mentioned that Steelers great Jerome Bettis was out at rallies for Obama with his "terrible towel."

It's been a good weekend - yesterday Sam and I did our five mile walk, then drove out to the Inland Empire to visit my mom, and go to dinner. As a general rule, the term "sophisticated" and the IE never appear on the same page, but there is a great wine bar/restaurant in Wildomar called D’Canters. Great food, a nice wine selection of wines by the glass, including maybe 5 from local Temecula wineries, and jazz in the evenings.

So today, to walk off the good food and wine, Sam and I did our longest walk together to date - 7 miles. We were walking the same route along Bolsa Chica as the last 7 miles of the Huntington Beach Marathon. By the time we joined the group, it was definitely the tail end of the runners, but I have great admiration for anyone who attempts a marathon.

My sweater is zooming along, half a sleeve, the body, and most of the left front. This may be fastest knitted sweater I ever made.

Back to work tomorrow, and . . .