Sunday, January 31, 2010

Bread Thief (APAD)

The 132nd picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

The glasses above are 3-D glasses I stole from the movie Avatar. I decided not to give them back, because (1) they were super cool and (2) I felt the price I paid for my ticket should cover the glasses too. It wasn't until today, however, that I realized just how useful these stolen glasses could be in my life. First, the Michael Jackson Tribute on the Grammys tonight is going to be in 3-D. Hello! Now I don't have to buy a pair, since I already stole some. Yay! Second, my kitchen was very bright today when I was baking banana bread and having lost my sunglasses a few weeks ago, the 3-D glasses were the perfect solution to bright-light baking problems. God, I love these glasses.


Because this banana bread recipe is the best and easiest recipe I've ever found, I thought I'd share it with all of you :) I just can't remember where I found it ...

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
4 bananas, finely crushed
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1. Cream butter and sugar
2. Add eggs and crushed bananas. Combine well.
3. Sift together flour, soda, and salt. Add to creamed mixture. Add vanilla.
4. Pour into greased loaf pan and bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

An Ode (APAD)

The 131st picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Yes, technically this is a video not a picture. But, a video is just a bunch of moving pictures, right? That's how I'm rationalizing it anyway!

My first video ever ... Enjoy.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Moon. Beer. Blue. Wolf. (APAD)

The 130th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

A Blue Moon on the night of the Wolf Moon.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Bird Sticker (APAD)

The 129th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Candles with a bird sticker. Please don't ever buy one for me. Please.

I like cool Jesus candles or candles with any of the Saints on them. I prefer unscented candles with a long burning life. I like candles in Earth tones or just plain white. I even enjoy the elusive tie-dye candle in bright colors. I like candles with interesting designs. I like pillar and tea light candles and candles that are short, tall, fat or skinny. I also like candles that come in a package or those that are sold individually. I like indoor and outdoor candles.

I just don't like candles with a bird sticker. That's all.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Pisces/Mars Mars/Pisces (APAD)

The 128th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Back in the day, when the dial-up internet and AOL were new and cool, I rocked the online screen name of marspisces. I carried the name over to my brief Twitter days as well. Marspisces came about from an astrology reading I had done when I was 16 years old. I paid $50 for the dumb thing. Anyway, the reading said something about the planet Mars being a strong influence in my sign. I have no idea what that means anymore. At the time, though, it must have been fairly significant to me since I obsessively covered my notebooks with "marspisces" during study hall.

Today reminded me of my past Mars/Pisces obsession. First, Mason made me a new pair of earrings. Now the symbol of Pisces can dangle from my ears forever! Then, this evening, I noticed a bright, reddish star in the sky ... its Mars! I googled it and discovered that tonight is the last time Mars will be this close to the Earth and this bright until 2014. Does this mean anything? Probably not ... but it's cool!

Go outside, look to the East, and behold the beauty of Mars!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A Dog-vention (APAD)

The 127th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Madge and her invention: the living room curtain hammock.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sweet Salvation (APAD)

The 126th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Inspirational candy pops ... scare me.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Hot Stuff at the Dollar Store (APAD)

The 125th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Mason at the checkout getting checked out.

I was only a little jealous ...

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Saturday Melange ... (APAD)

The 124th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

So far, my Saturday has consisted of: coffee, vacuuming, stubbing my toe, an afternoon with good friends, and a large dinosaur filled with balls.

Life is good.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Knights of Chauncelot (APAD)

The 123rd picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

It's official ... the Chauncelot citizens are banding together to create our very own Chauncelot Police Force, or vigilante group, or militia - whatever you want to it call it. The article states, "Villagers have been complaining for months about the increase in crime since the Chauncelot Police Department was disbanded in August 2008." Ehem. Allow me to clarify ... the Chauncelot Police Department consisted of one police officer. A chief and an officer all in one body. Thus, I find it very difficult to believe that crime has increased as dramatically as the article and some mullet-wearing citizens may lead you to believe. Further, this one lone cop was involved in some shady activity that allegedly included crack cocaine and sleeping with our former Mayor. So if crime has indeed "increased" perhaps its because the former cop was too busy doing other things, if you know what I mean.

Anyway, the article goes on to say that there's going to be a meeting tonight to elect officers and formalize the band of volunteers that will begin patrolling the Chauncelot streets. (Apparently, the city doesn't have enough money to pay someone $10/hr to be Police Chief.) Needless to say, I was stoked. As soon I as I got home from work, I pulled together my policing gear: a headlamp, a walkie-talkie, a face mask from a hospital, some latex gloves, and an old Halloween wig that I'm considering giving a mullet-style hair cut.

Yep ... I was all ready to fight Chauncelot crime until I began gorging on Chinese food. Now, I'm sitting on my couch with a full belly and finishing my second glass of wine, missing a lifetime opportunity to fight crime. Really, though, I just wanted to join the force so I could patrol my own street ... I don't want Mason being placed under Citizen's Arrest for public urination, which he is known to engage in. That would just be soooooo embarassing.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Lady Dog-Whipped (APAD)

The 122nd picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

And, now for the finale.

I call this woman, Lady Dog-Whipped, because it appears her dog controls her life. Basically, this woman's 2-pound dog takes her on a walk at exactly 12:17pm (during my lunch break) and 4:43pm (when I get home from work) every day. Lady Dog-Whipped follows her dog anywhere and everywhere she decides to go. That means if doggie wants to go from the alley all the way up to my back porch, torturing my dogs, that's fine. That's where they go. Sure, Lady Dog-Whipped will say things like, "Oh Moopsie, you know we can't go through other people's yards" or "No, Moopsie this way," but never once does Lady Dog-Whipped do what most dog owners do, which is to simply grab a hold of the leash and walk in the other direction. Instead, Lady Dog-Whipped is led throughout the yards of Chauncelot by her little ankle-biter.

The picture above was captured as Moopsie decided to stop and stare at Madgie ... And, if Moopsie doesn't move, then neither does Lady Dog-Whipped. Of course, shortly after this picture, Moopsie stopped the stare down and continued on through our yard. The bright side about having a neighbor like Lady Dog-Whipped, is that my dogs are learning some serious self-control for which they are rewarded with goodies like dog biscuits, Pupperoni, and their all-time favorite ... pig ears!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Amazing Walking Woman (APAD)

The 121st picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

The Amazing Walking Woman is the second Chauncelot character in my trio. This woman is so dedicated to her exercise program that I'm pretty sure she power walks 24/7. I don't think she sleeps. Sometimes I wonder if she's human or some kind of a robotic exerciser that escaped from the Apple laboratories. I see her on my way to work in the morning, on my way home at lunch, and when Hilde and I are playing fetch around dinner time. On the weekends, I see her pretty much anytime I'm out and about. It also doesn't matter if its snowing, pouring down rain, so cold you can't breathe, or so hot you might pass out - she's out there walking!

I wish I was as dedicated to exercising as she is, but instead I just prefer to sit on my couch, eat peanut M&Ms, and watch her sweat outside my window. The Amazing Walking Woman of Chauncelot truly is amazing.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Mad Skillz (APAD)

The 120th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Over the next three days I will be introducing you to three new Chauncelot characters whom I've identified over the past year. (You may remember some of the past weirdos: the Pink Bathrobe Lady and the Man/Woman, Albert and, the man who started it all, Cliff.) The first in the trio is the Mad Rapper of Chauncelot.

The Mad Rapper believes he has mad rapping skillz that must be shared with the entire neighborhood. He and his Walkman (yes, I said Walkman and, no, I didn't mean ipod) traipse from block to block rapping as loudly as he can. If he's really feeling the beat, he'll even stop in the middle of the road and do some head-bobbing and fist-pumping hand gestures before continuing on. From what I've heard, he seems to prefer Snoop Dogg, Jay-Z, and Eminem songs. I'm fairly certain he's trying to be discovered, but unfortunately for him he has three major problems: (1) He lives in rural Ohio and I'm guessing the chances of "discovery" aren't great here; (2) He still has a Walkman and that's all I'm gonna say about that; and, most importantly,
(3) He SUCKS. His rapping skillz are HELLACIOUS. If he was on American Idol auditions, Simon Cowell would probably say something like, "Even Jesus hates you." Harsh, I know, but true.

Despite my criticisms, however, The Mad Rapper lives to rap another day. I hope one day he will knock on my door and try to sell me a cassette tape with some original hip hop. I will fork over the $10 just so I can share the joy with all of you.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Zen and the Art of Gum Chewing (APAD)

The 119th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Gum. I love it.

For everyday chewing, I prefer peppermint-flavored Dentyne Ice. For fun, unabated chewing, however, I like Dubble Bubble, Bubblicious, and Big League Chew. I like to chew a piece until it loses all flavor, spit it out, and pop another piece in my mouth without missing a beat. Yummmm.

Chewing gum is calming for me. The Greeks would call it catharsis, the Buddha probably Mindfulness. I prefer to think of it more like Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy in an otherwise cruel world.

Gum. I love it.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Quenching the Thirst (APAD)

The 118th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Apparently I was very thirsty at the baby shower this afternoon.

(Still not a tomato juice fan, but this was one of the best and spiciest Bloody Mary's I've ever had!)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Right Time to Pee (APAD)

The 117th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

We've all been at the theater watching a movie, had to pee, but didn't go because we didn't want to miss anything. Then we watch the rest of the movie practically swimming in our own urine. Well, now we don't have to. Thank God for Runpee tracks all of the latest movies and gives you the best times to take a bathroom break so you don't miss anything important!

Isn't that dumb, and yet absolutely ingenious?! wins my "Why didn't I think of that?!" award.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Friday Nights (APAD)

The 116th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Earlier today, I realized how very sad it is that at 28 years old my Friday nights consist of piles of laundry and some Netflix movies.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

App Addict (APAD)

The 115th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Ever since getting my iphone, I have become an app addict. I peruse the app store daily to see if there are any "must haves" that I don't yet have. One of my favorite free apps is the "Words with Friends" game. It's pretty much just Scrabble with a different name. What I like about it is that there is no time limit so you can play the game as often or as little as you like. You can also play against friends. Thus the name, right?

Mason and I have been playing against each other regularly. I beat him so of course we had to have a rematch. During the rematch I scored my highest word ever for 66 points. I thought I was going to beat him again until he scored PACIFICIST for 179-freakin'-points. WTH! I didn't realize you could get that many points for one word!!

So, now Masonreal and DanielleM are tied ... And, DanielleM has declared war. DanielleM will not be outscored again!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Mallard and the Man (APAD)

The 114th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

An odd sighting caputured on camera: A man chasing a duck outside of the Chauncelot Post Office.

Is it his pet or his dinner? We may never know.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Make Up (APAD)

The 113th picture(s) in "A Picture A Day" series.

So, I realize that yesterday my picture really wasn't a picture since I cheated and copied and pasted it from online. I had a bad day, OK?! Geez. Today, I decided to make up for yesterday by posting several pictures from my camera phone. Enjoy!

A squished Madgie.

Big bottle of wine I didn't buy, but it was a Riesling so I'm not that sad.

Poor dead mole. RIP.

YEEOUCH! Looks painful. My dogs are animals, what can I say?


Sometimes it just takes a pretty sunrise to make your day.

Ummmmm, I didn't create this. I just took the picture.

Icicles make me happy.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Bad Day, Good Day (APAD)

The 112th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

My day was an odd mixture of bad and good and oddly enough the bad and the good stemmed from the same situations. I've summarized my day below:

Bad Day: Mason and I were arguing most of the day.

Good Day: It's resolved!

Bad Day: Mason's Mom is in the hospital and gravely ill.

Good Day: This afternoon/evening she was doing slightly better.

Bad Day: I attended my first yoga class ever and was very relaxed upon leaving ... Then when I got home I realized my cell phone was no where to be found. Sooooo, I emptied my purse, cleaned out the car, searched high and low ... Nada. My relaxation quickly turned to high stress.

Good Day: After making THREE trips back to the yoga studio, Mason finally spotted the light of my phone buried under a pile of snow. Luckily it still works! I also didn't have a total freak out like I normally would have.

Bad Day: Hilde decided to pee in the house this morning, so I got to spend my lunch hour cleaning that up.

Good Day: Neither Madge or Hilde ate the bag of chocolate I accidentally left laying on the coffee table.

Bad Day: I should be in bed by now.

Good Day: I'm heading to bed.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Obsession (APAD)

The 111th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Madge is obsessed with my slippers and it's driving me crazy.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Top 8 (APAD)

The 110th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

I'm a huge foreign film fan. I love, love, love them! There's so much depth to foreign and independent films, which is why I prefer watching them over most mainstream movies. Tonight I watched the movie, Thirst. It's about vampires ... my favorite! Overall, I thought it was pretty good, but the first half of it was really kinda boring. After that, though, it became psycho. And, I love psycho! Anyway, this got me thinking about my favorite foreign films, so I've compiled my top 8 list below (all with links) in case you want to dip your feet in the foreign cinema ...

1. Pan's Labryinth - This movie takes place after the Spanish Civil War. It centers around a girl named Ofelia and a fantastic world she encounters. This movie is sad, beautiful and amazing.

2. The Orphanage - This Spanish horror flick centers around a woman, Laura, and her family who go back to live in her childhood home that once was an orphanage. Guillermo del Torro, who directed Pan's Labryinth, helped produce this movie. While I wouldn't say this movie is scary, there are definitely a lot of twists and turns and creepy moments.

3. The Lives of Others - I freakin' love this movie. It's a German film set in East Berlin. It follows the Stasi and their investigation of a prominent playwright. The ending had me crying ... and it takes a lot to get me to cry!

4. La Vie En Rose - This is a French film about Edith Piaf, a legendary French singer. I had never even heard of her until I saw this movie. Let me just say that the actress who plays Edith is simply amazing. She made the movie. This is another tear-jerker.

5. Run Lola Run - A fast-paced German film that follows a woman who needs to get thousands of dollars in order to save her boyfriend's life ... and she only has 20 minutes to do it.

6. Wings of Desire - I first watched this in my German class in high school and fell in love. It's like poetry on screen. Amazing.

7. Three Colors Trilogy (Blue/White/Red)- These are French/Polish films whose names represent the colors of the French flag. The themes of each movie also explore the meaning behind each of the colors in the flag: liberty, equality, and fraternity. Juliette Binoche is in Blue and I think she's a beautiful and fabulous actress, so that makes me like this trilogy even more.

8. La Femme Nikita - I think this is my all-time favorite foreign film. I've seen this probably about 10 times and I love it more and more each time. This is about a hoodlum, turned assassin ... and Nikita is totally bad ass! If you rent this, make sure you get the one with subtitles, though, and not something that's dubbed over in English ... it's just not as good that way.

For those of you that "don't do subtitles" - get the eff over it!!! You're seriously missing out on some great movies. If you watch any of these, let me know your thoughts :)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Mad Housewife vs. Big Tattoo (APAD)

The 109th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Tonight was wine night with a friend of mine. And, if you hadn't already guessed, I love wine! She brought Mad Housewife White Zinfandel and I brought Big Tattoo White. Since I know all of you are dying to know what I thought of the wines, my reviews are as follows:

Mad Housewife: For some reason, I expected this to be sweeter than it was since it was pink. I thought it would be more like drinking Koolaid than wine. But, I was pleasantly surprised. To me, this was a subtle wine with a subtle sweetness and a subtle fruity flavor. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed my two glasses.

Big Tattoo White: This is a Riesling combined with something else that I can't recall. This was much sweeter than Mad Housewife and had a much stronger fruity flavor. I know that Rieslings are sweet, but I thought since it was combined with something else, it wouldn't be as sweet as it was. Oh well. I still drank a glass and liked every drop!

Overall, I prefered Mad Housewife and my friend, Big Tattoo. So we swapped.

Wine night rocks!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Hoping ... (APAD)

The 108th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

I feel like a little kid again, hoping for a snow day ... Those are the best!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Pits (APAD)

The 107th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Last night I had a dream that I smelled really bad and I was in a room full of people and everyone wanted to hug me or sit right next to me. All of the people kept asking me what kind of perfume I was wearing, but I couldn't figure out if they were just being polite or if they really thought my foul smell, smelled good. It was one of the oddest dreams I've ever had.

Then when I woke up this morning, I got ready like usual - took a shower, brushed my teeth, etc - but I totally forgot to put deodorant on. I didn't realize this until mid-morning at work when I smelled a faint scent of B.O ... and then smelled my pits and realized it was me!! So, I spent the rest of the day trying to make sure I didn't lift my arms too much and let the smell out from my pits ...

I guess my question is this: Is my dream combined with my forgetfulness to powder my pits just a coincidence or do you think it means something?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Best Dog Toy (APAD)

The 106th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

My dogs destroy pretty much any toy I buy them, which is why I've resorted to buying all of their toys at the dollar store. So, when Mason bought them two toy ducks for Christmas, that cost $6.99 each, I was a little irritated. That might not sound like much money, but it is when they rip up their toys within 5 minutes of getting them. But, I have to say, that these ducks are the best dog toys we've ever bought them. And, as you see, they are still intact nearly two weeks later!

The ducks make duck sounds. They're not just the little irritating squeaky toys that make squeaky sounds, they have a much more irritating and long, drawn out duck sound. And, I think it's the duck sound that have led Madge and Hilde to believe that these toys are actual animals. That's the only reason I can think of that there are not poor duck body parts strewn around my house right now. Granted, one of the ducks is missing an eye, but that's it! Nothing else has been ripped off. Madge even sleeps with her duck and Hilde brings her duck just about everywhere she goes. (I hope these toys aren't making my dogs more mentally ill then they already are ...)

Anyway, I love these dog toys ... they have held up better than any toy we've ever had. And, I would highly recommend purchasing them. We got ours at Tractor Supply Company.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Fruit Crazed (APAD)

The 105th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

I just ate my 5th grapefruit of the day. What is wrong with me?

I'm a grapefruit-eating fool and I think I need help.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Day of Rest (APAD)

The 104th picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Hilde and I doing what we do best ... chillaxin ...

In this house, we take the whole 'day of rest' business very, very seriously!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Ouch! (APAD)

The 103rd picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

Anyone who knows me, knows I am prone to burns. I have two burn scars on my right leg from a curling iron - don't ask - and, I have multiple scars on my upper and lower arms from burns from the oven, hot pans, and one time scalding coffee - again, don't ask. Then, last night I received my latest burn, which I'm sure will turn into a scar, on my left thumb ... this time from hot wax.

I was heating wax in the microwave, to wax my eyebrows, when I foolishly attempted to take it out, not realizing how hot it was, and then had a major freak out, tipped it, and dumped it all over my thumb. The ring finger on my left hand also received some wax damage, but not nearly as bad as my thumb. I'm pretty sure this is the worst burn I've ever received ... or maybe my thumb is just more sensitive than the other areas I've burned in the past?? I don't know, but the pain was so intense I almost vomited. Yeah ... bad. I even had to sleep with an ice pack rubber-banded around my hand to ease the throbbing. Luckily, the pain is now gone, but its turned into one giant waxy blister since I can't get all of the wax off without peeling away my skin too ... yikes!

Lesson learned: Pay $10 to have a professional wax your eyebrows.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Unveiling (APAD)

The 102nd picture in "A Picture A Day" series.

I love New Year's Day, because there's always a Twilight Zone marathon and I LOVE the Twilight Zone ... Not the newer ones, but the old black and white ones with Rod Serling. When I was a kid, my brother, sister and I would recreate our favorite Twilight Zone shows and record them on the camcorder. Ahhhhh ... memories ...

Anyway, today is my unveiling of the food, well in this case the drink, that I am going to learn to love for the year. It's tea - ta da! Yeah, kinda boring, but I really don't like tea at all and apparently it's good for you. So, I should probably learn to like it. I'm starting today off with pomegranate and cherry tea. The first cup is down ... still tastes like dirty water to me ... but it's only the first day, right? I gotta whole year of tea drinkin' ahead of me!!