January 31st, 2011

Aside from the heat, Louisiana has its charms.

Like finding three foot mosquitos on your laundry closet doors. At the end of January.

As I was walking around my apartment, wondering what I should take a picture of today, I happened upon a mosquito from the Jurassic period.

I stared at the mammoth creature and pondered getting out my molten amber and covering the mosquito, thus preserving whatever blood he currently held in his belly and providing the plot for an awesome movie involving monstrous creatures and Jeff Goldblum.

Instead, I got my camera and took photographic evidence of this mutant mosquito. I took about 15 pictures before calling Daniel to kill him. This is how that conversation went.

I pointed to the mosquito and asked, "Can you kill it?"

Daniel looked down at the camera clasped in my right hand. "So, you can take pictures of it, but you can't kill it," he said incredulously.

"I don't like the crunchy-squishy feeling bugs make when you kill them."



January 30th, 2011

Furthering in the vain of a dog taking over my life.

(sidenote: this was not a picture of Barnacle, he just photobombed)

I just wanted to showcase how much crap we've bought Barnacle. In case it's not clear, we have 2 types of treats and 5 types of bones plus a jumbo pack of pee-pads. I did also add his monkey, because I thought it was funny.

I can't believe how much money I've thrown at a dog who is more happy pulling apart/humping his pillows (lovely) than doing anything else.

I guess this gets me karma points - for rescuing a shelter dog and then spoiling him rotten. But, still, when did I get here? How did I get here? Did he poop?

That last question was aimed at my husband.

January 29th, 2011

I didn't post last night because I was out until an ungodly hour.

11:30 pm.

That's just pathetic.

Prior to my move to Louisiana, I would frequently stay out until 3 or 4 am. Now, 11:30 pm seems way too late, and just thinking about staying out until almost midnight is exhausting.

My picture is a tribute to the fact that I actually got dressed up to go out on a date with my husband. I wanted to prove to myself that sometimes I can put on a nice shirt, put on makeup, and brush my hair.

Just kidding, I usually brush my hair anyway.

The picture isn't really in focus, and I tried not to make it too emo, but it's still a little emo. However, I like it. It's interesting, probably only to me, though.

As a side note - on our date, a funny thing happened when we were giving the ticket taker our tickets.

I was first to hand my ticket to him, and he looked at me sternly, then looked over at Daniel and asked, "How old are you?"

"28," Daniel replied.

The ticket taker looked me over again and said, "....Ok," and reluctantly let us into the theater.

This is my first experience of my husband being treated as my chaperon at a Rated R movie. I was flabbergasted. I look 16 at the oldest? Are you kidding me?

Daniel found this very funny, I found it very annoying. I know it's flattering to look young, but I do not look 16 years old.

Also - later that night I didn't get carded for an alcoholic beverage. Go figure.

January 28th, 2011

I promise this blog will not become a shrine to my dog. However.

This picture made me laugh for twenty-five minutes. He looks psychotic, deranged even, like he would meander up to me drooling, asking for directions to his spaceship.

It was a completely lucky shot, and it's also completely hilarious, at least in my opinion.

I don't know when my life started revolving around a dog, but it's odd. At least 50% of the conversations between my husband and I start out with, "Did he poop?"

When did I become so interested in dog feces? Better yet, when did I start becoming OK with talking about feces in general?

The highlight of my day was that he was better behaved than fully grown dogs at the vet. He's not perfect, but he also wasn't ripping our hands through the leash to get to the other dogs. He barked maybe five times. When did I begin to measure my happiness by a dog's behavior?

It's a strange direction my life is taking, soon I'll be carrying around pictures of my dog and start calling him my baby.

Actually, no. I probably won't do that.

January 27th, 2011

After about 25 rounds of different people guessing at what on Earth Barnacle is, I've decided to lay my bet on the table.

I'm laying odds that Barnacle is a Beagle-Lab mix.

My reasoning? Setting aside the fact that I know next to nothing about dogs, I had a yellow lab and a beagle growing up. I vaguely remember them both as puppies, and Rosie (the yellow lab) was bulkier than Barnacle at 9 weeks. Rosie was wider and more gangly as well. I've also looked up weights for lab puppies, and for 9 weeks he should be almost 20 pounds, and he's only 10.5 pounds. Barnacle also has giant ears, much bigger than a labrador's ears, however not quite as big as a beagle. His paws aren't huge, but they're not tiny either, and he's clumsy as hell. I'm not sure if that's a lab or beagle thing, but it's funny.

I think he's a mix of the two, I know for sure he's not all lab. I'm also pressing the idea because I think it would be weird to end up with a dog who's a mixture of my first two dogs.

January 26th, 2011

I am a lazy person, I will freely admit this. I will never get the urge to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, though I'd love to take pictures of it. I will never run a marathon - because I see no point in duplicating the act of a Greek messenger who ran that far to say that the war was won, only to DIE. I will never be a fitness fanatic, I will avoid that fact of life as long as possible.

My laziness, coupled with my lack of thinking led to this picture.

I had to turn in an expense report for my trip to Houston, because if I had to stay in stabbetyville, USA, I was going to get paid for it. The person whom I had to turn this report in to works approximately 15 minutes from my office - in North Fort Polk. I drove there only to find numerous mud slushers and rock picker uppers (I think that's what they're called) - basically a lot of construction vehicles - in the process of repaving the parking lot, which is in front of the building. There was no point of entry around the mud slush, at least none that I knew of. So, I parked my car (illegally) and ran across the mud slush to turn in my report.

My thinking behind this was that the sooner I turned in the report, the sooner I would get paid. My thought process also included the fact that I was absolutely NOT interested in driving ALL the way back to North Fort later in the week (you know, ten minutes out of my way) to turn the report in. Logical, yes?

Well, not really. There were at least half a dozen women outside on a smoke break who watched me tap dance through the potholes of sludge and the surprise quicksand traps. I felt as if I were in a game of mario, I half expected Bowser to burst out of the building and challenge me to jump on his head until he died.

However, instead of Bowser, I had about six incredulous, professional women watching a 24 year old idiot who was trying to make tromping through the mud look graceful. When I reached them, they looked at my muddied Converse and exclaimed that I had ruined my shoes, though I'm sure none of them saw this as a loss. I fumbled around embarrassed and handed over my report - which they promised to give to the person who was actually out for the day.

Needless to say, I was mortified, and I almost flew across the mud on the way back to my car, I wouldn't be surprised if I sprayed their dress pants with guck in the process. Once in the safety of my car, I gunned it to 88, hoping to turn back time so I could decide to be a normal human being who would have seen the mud and repaving and decided to WAIT to hand in the report rather than look like a fool. However, in instances such as this, I'm afraid I will always go and look like an idiot only to regret it later.

I did manage to completely ruin my shoes, incidentally. However, I have a new pair of Vans sneakers on their way to my house as we speak. I wonder when I will grow out of my adolescence. Probably not any time soon.

P.S. When my husband saw my shoes outside he asked, "So, did you step in dog poop?"

"How the eff could I step in THAT much dog poop?" I responded.

No reply.

January 25th, 2011

I never thought I would be so happy to see this sign.

I left knifeville USA, and I breathed a sigh of relief upon entering Leesville. It may be bumble, there may be puppies for sale on the side of the road, the biggest attraction may be Walmart, but it is still 100 times better than Houston.

January 24th, 2011

Behold, Houston's one saving grace.

They have a Potbelly.

I haven't had Potbelly for three months, since the last time I was in Chicago. It's not even my favorite chain available in the Chicagoland area, but I can't get it in Louisiana, and it's nice to have options outside of: McDonald's, Burger King, or Taco Bell.

My dinner was good, I had forgotten how good Potbelly is - however - it did not wash away my dislike of Houston. I almost had a panic attack walking out of a CVS by myself. It was probably an overreaction, but upon walking out of the CVS I was knocked sideways with the feeling of impending doom as two men followed me out of the store. All manner of scenario burst into my cerebellum, not the least of which was getting robbed and possibly stabbed (again, Houston seems like a knife city) before I could even make it to my car. I don't know if I've just grown accustomed to small town living - or to the fact that I usually always have a soldier escort to protect me, but I just don't feel safe here.

I don't like it here. I never will.

January 23rd, 2011

This is me, in Houston.

Know why I'm making that face? Why I look unimpressed by this rather un-majestic metropolis?

I hate Houston. This city sucks. I'm sorry to any Houstonites who love this city and its dirty sidewalks and strange men in the middle of highways waving signs at cars. But, I hate it here. I feel unsafe everywhere I go. I believe there are no good parts of Houston, granted I don't venture much outside the radius of my hotel, but I don't really want to after seeing what little of the city I have. The only place I don't feel like I'll get robbed at knifepoint (I don't know - it just seems like a knife-fight kind of city) is in my hotel room at the Hilton.

Before you go on about how I'm spoiled I am for staying at a Hilton, just stop. Anyone who has to travel to this city deserves to stay at Buckingham Palace, because the whole city sucks. It's crime filled and filthy. Do you want to know why I know it's crime filled? The last time I was here my corporate credit card number got stolen and someone went on a $200 joyride at Target. So, not only is this place filled with criminals, they're high class - I still had my card in my wallet when they made the purchase and the bank called telling me there were suspicious purchases on my card.

"Have you made a purchase at a Houston Target thirty minutes ago?"

"I'm just crossing the border into Louisiana."

"So, no?"


I don't feel safe going anywhere in the stupid town and I wish I didn't have to be here. Unfortunately, I have to go through training for work, and unfortunately it had to take place here. Tuesday can't come soon enough.

January 22nd, 2011

My husband is cute sometimes.

I threw my sweater on him while I was playing super mario, because I generally throw things at him that I don't want: sweaters, heavy boxes, cleaning supplies. Anyway, he took my sweater and used it as a mini blanket for a nap. I tried to get a picture of him sleeping but he got wise and saw me.

I took this picture as proof of Ski's sweet side, even though he spends 90% of his time on facebook ranting like a miserly old man. I wouldn't be surprised if he tomorrow I found him sitting on the porch spraying children with our garden hose. It's hard to believe he hates everything when he's cuddling with my sweater.

January 21st, 2011

I have declared a new law of the Szymanski household, unbeknownst to my husband. Although, I guess it will be beknownst to him when he reads this.

The first person to find money lying around the house gets to keep it. In other words - finders keepers, losers weepers. I'm very sophisticated.

Basically this rule only applies to Daniel's money, which I am always finding around the house. He is very lackadaisical with his dollars and especially his coins, so I've decided if he doesn't care about it, I get to keep it.

This rule is rather fortuitous this weekend, considering I have to drive to Houston and there are tolls. I now have eight pilfered dollars stuffed in my wallet, and ain't no way Daniel's gettin' it back.

January 20th, 2011

I guess puppies grow fast.

After just a week and a half Barnacle is already bigger. I absolutely cannot tell what he is mixed with. I still think Lab, but he does not look all Lab. I'm not a dog expert. I'm not even a dog person, so someone smarter than me will have to gander a guess as to Barnacle's lineage.

Despite a few daily accidents he's getting better, he's starting to learn what "No" means. But, we still have to occasionally accompany that with a squirt of water. Daniel commented that he looked like Kujo with all the dark spots on his fur where the water landed. After that I couldn't look at him without imagining as an evil rabies infested beast.

He definitely gets into everything and points out what a bad housekeeper I am. He wandered out of the hallway not once but TWICE with a dryer sheet hanging out of his mouth. I have no idea where he got them, I guess they floated down somewhere, and he's seriously the weirdest dog ever, who wants to chew on dryer sheets, the oven door, and a METAL crate.

I would end up with the weirdest dog on the planet.

January 19th, 2011

Today's picture is not my favorite shot I've ever taken, but it sums up my accomplishment of the day.

I built two nightstands today. Ski's is on the other side, but it looks exactly the same so you get the idea.

I kind of hate and kind of love building my furniture. I hate it because it's a pain in the ass. My fingers are sore from allen wrenching for two hours. My back hurts from bending over numerous pieces of wood. My dog is soaked from trying to chew on it as I put it together. It wasn't the most fun Wednesday evening I've ever had.

However, I am happy that I can actually build a nightstand - with my husband's help. It gives me a little feeling of accomplishment, and I kind of love that.

Now, I never thought I'd be psyched for a pair of nightstands. Nor did I think I would be psyched for our table and chairs, our coffee table, and especially our bed. But, always having to balance a plate on your lap while you eat, balancing a TV on a tote, and balancing your back on an air mattress will definitely make you appreciate these things.

I like that Daniel and I are starting from scratch, it's sappy but it's all ours together. However, that means that any time we get a new (needed) piece of furniture I become Ecstatic. I will definitely appreciate these nightstands, because I've been using a tall tote that doesn't exactly have a smooth surface and my sleep machine has crashed to the ground more times than I can count. I'm actually surprised it still works.

Next up - a dresser. That should be fun to put together. *sigh*

January 18th, 2011

In this edition of Barnacle Wars I introduce you to our new weapon against the opposition.

I bought his and hers spray bottles today at the PX and filled them with water, then I had a wizard place a dog repellent curse on them.

Any time Barnacle bites my ankles or chews on the couch, table legs, the oven door (that's a new one, and seriously, what dog bites an oven door?), or the 12 packs of pop sitting on the floor in the kitchen I spray him. After I spray him, he promptly runs away to the sanctuary of his cage, apparently he feels safe from the evil water there.

I read that this was a good training tool for dogs. I want to send whoever came up with this tool a vial of my tears of joy and one million dollars, because I've found out how well it works. My stress level today is about 10% of what it was yesterday. I am not tearing my hair out when he sinks his cracken fangs into my leg, instead I spray his head and he scampers away. I hope this works forever, or until he stops biting me. And everything else.

We also signed him up for puppy training at petsmart. I will be driving to Alexandria once a week starting March 1st. I probably won't be able to go to all of the 6 week course, since I'll be moving to Germany in March/April, but this was the next class and any class starting in February we'd miss classes too for various trips.

Soon, Barnacle will be a trained Cracken, who will only attack our enemies' ankles. You've been warned, enemies.

January 17th, 2011 (Barnacle Wars)

Having a puppy is hard work. I knew this going in, yet I was not prepared. Barnacle bites at everything, especially my ankles. He tries to rip apart the couch. He chews on the table legs regardless of the fact that I spray them with anti-chew spray daily. He jumps at the couch, he pees on the floor (albeit less often as we house-train him, and he doesn't poop in the house except on puppy pads, so that's something). He's incessant, and the last time I had a puppy I was maybe 13 and I can't remember if it was this bad or if my dog is the antichrist. Maybe I've blocked those memories.

So, one of our many efforts in taming his wild ways is to remove temptation.

Anything that would normally be left on the floor is now stored either in the bedroom or on the kitchen chairs. We have to keep shoes in the living room so we can take the hell beast out to use the bathroom, so they are assigned to the chairs.

I would be upset that my chairs are getting dirty, but anything that keeps the cracken from devouring our footwear is fine with me. Plus, we never sit at the table, because it's fully loaded with all of our odds and ends. Just another barrier we've put up against the enemy forces (aka Barnacle Wars).

January 16th, 2011

I didn't post last night because I was busy being Betty Crocker again; only this time I had better success.

I made homemade caramel delights after my sister, Emily, sent me a link to the recipe. These were the cookies I was trying to make a few days ago that turned into a messy crumbly mess. This time I made the caramel first, and it actually tasted like caramel when I finished. I made the cookie dough and barely had the mixer started when I added in the flour - it actually came out like real cookie dough.

I think the key to making these successfully was not freaking out at every second of the baking process. I didn't throw any tantrums and I went back and forth from playing Super Mario for Wii and baking. It was easiest to toggle the two while making the caramel - it takes forever to boil long enough.

Anyway, they're delicious, Daniel loves them, but I don't know if I'll ever muster the patience to make them again. I mostly just wanted to prove to myself that I could, I've been exhausted ever since.

Also, here's the recipe for those interested:

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup superfine sugar (or granulated)
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
Dipping Caramel (recipe follows)
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (available at health food stores)
12 ounces of chocolate chips
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Add in egg and beat until well incorporated, scraping down the bowl, if necessary. Add in vanilla. Beat until smooth. With mixer on low, add in salt and flour. Mix until completely incorporated and dough is uniform. Pull dough together and shape into a cylinder with a diameter of about 2 1/2 inches. Wrap in parchment paper and freeze for at least 25 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice dough into 1/8 inch disks and place on baking sheets, about an inch apart. Once you have made 30 cookies, wrap up the cookie dough, freeze, and save for another time. Use a tiny circle shaped cookie cutter or a large round cake decorating tip to cut a hole in the center of each disk. Refrigerate for an additional 10 minutes. Bake for 8 minutes, or until crisp. Let cool completely.
3. Add coconut into the caramel. Warm the caramel in the microwave for about 10 seconds if necessary. Take cooled cookies and gently dip them completely in the caramel. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Freeze until set, about 5 minutes.
4. Melt chocolate in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second intervals, stirring well after each interval, until fully melted. Place the caramel coated cookies in the chocolate. Use a fork to pull them out of the chocolate and place them on a parchment line cookie sheet. Use the chocolate still on the fork to drizzle stripes over the top of the cookies. Refrigerate until set.
Dipping Caramel
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar)
4 tablespoons corn syrup
6 tablespoons water
pinch of salt
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons cream (DO NOT use plain whipping cream)
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1. In a heavy bottomed saucepan with high sides, combine sugar, corn syrup, water, and salt. Whisk until combined, and set over medium-low heat. Swirl the pan every now and then to help distribute the heat. Use can use a pastry brush dipped in water to brush the sugar crystals down the sides of the saucepan. When the sugar dissolves completely, raise the heat to medium. When it comes to a boil, watch very carefully for the bubbles to become more viscous (this means that the water has evaporated and that it is ready to go through the candy stages). As it is bubbling away, you want it to turn a deep amber color. When it does, remove the heat and, working quickly, use the spoon to scoop up a small amount of the candy and drop it into the small glass of water. If the blob turns hard like lollipop, then it is ready. If the blob is still soft, put the pan back on the heat. Keep testing until the candy is hard. Remove from heat.
2. Whisk in butter, 6 tablespoons of cream, and vanilla (Careful here, as the mixture should bubble violently for about 10 seconds). If the caramel isn’t smooth right away, return the pan to low heat and whisk until smooth.

January 15th, 2011

Except for the three hours I was taking a nap today, this is basically all I did.

I was spraying everything in the house with Anti-Chew Spray. Barnacle would eat my entire house - tiles and roof and all if he were allowed to run rampant. However, I bought anti-chew spray and spray any and everything he sets his teeth to, not including his chew toys. I let him chew his pillow too, cause he's just shootin' himself in the foot there, and we all know that he'll learn his lesson if I let him chew through his own bed.

The problem nobody tells you about with anti-chew spray is that it wears off after about 24 hours and I have to spray everything again, either that or Barnacle's a genius and realizes that the chair legs won't taste bad after a certain amount of time. He's like the velociraptors in Jurassic Park who attack different parts of the fence to see if maybe that part won't electrocute them.

I will say that it's pretty funny to spray the table and chair legs and watch him wander back over, sniff twice, jerk back and run away from the nasty smell. Haha, puppy, I am smarter than you. Only a little bit, though.

January 13th/14th, 2011

I didn't post yesterday because I was too busy making the mess that became my picture of the day.

This is the remains of my attempted sugar cookies. When I told you I'm not the most domestic woman in the world, I wasn't kidding. I followed the recipe to a T, except for the mix flour in slowly part. I didn't think it would be a problem, because I only ever make cookie bars, and I whip the shit out of those. Apparently sugar-ish cookies need you to mix slowly or it turns into a crumbly mess, leaving yours truly throwing measuring cups violently across the room and almost throwing the mixing bowl against the wall. I froze the dough after mixing it (cause the recipe told me to, and I was hoping that would somehow make it congeal). Yeah, I know nothing about baking of the science therein. Well it came out in a crumbly roll that was easily broken apart. So, my last ditch effort was to try baking it in sheet form, it just became a hot crumbly sheet. I managed not to have a breakdown, which is surprising, considering the fact that I spent a good hour mixing the dough and making the dipping caramel, and I was tired and furious when the dough turned out like shit.

In the end I threw it away, refrigerated the caramel, and decided to try again this weekend, following the directions more closely this time. If it still turns into a crumbly mess there will definitely be violence.

Today's picture is in honor of my husband and I going on a date night.

We went to a Mexican restaurant and to see The Green Hornet and Ski wore my favorite shirt of his - I find it adorable and hilarious, and he is adorable in it.

January 12th, 2011

I moved to Louisiana expecting a complete culture shift - which I found. The closest Target is one and a half hours away, ditto for Old Navy and any kind of chain restaurant. I mostly only buy things like clothing online because I don't feel like driving all the way to Alexandria.

I expected stifling summers, and I certainly got a taste of one - coming here in August. However, I can't say I've really survived a deep southern Louisiana summer considering I was only here for the tail end of it. Mostly I've come to enjoy the mild fall and winter. I enjoy that it was 70 degrees outside a few days before Christmas. I kind of missed snow, but I didn't miss driving in it or practically shoveling it off the roof of my car. I enjoy that I've only worn my winter coat a handful of times. Today was one of those days.

Now, I was kind of irritated by this, I've come to enjoy throwing on a light sweater and walking out the door in mid January. However, there was a benefit from it.

This fountain literally turned to ice. I passed it on my way to work. I've never seen anything like it, maybe because in Chicago they turn fountains off at the first sign of cold weather. However, in Louisiana this is inclement weather - 45 degrees on January 12th - so this fountain was left on.

I don't know the science or process of how this happens. I'm sure it's the exact same principle as icicles, but I never cared enough to research it and I still don't. I just care that this fountain looks really cool.

January 11th, 2011

I wish I had a more interesting picture for my 01-11-11 post, however, all I have is evidence of my (lack of) craftiness.

So, apparently tiny puppies are mischievous, who knew? Barnacle is a very tiny puppy, and he takes his tiny puppy body and goes anywhere he can fit (including under the couch). Right now, the problem is his wanderings under the coffee table/TV stand (can you sense our craftiness already?!). Under the coffee table is a virtual maze of cords and plugs - basically everything a puppy would love to chew through and electrocute himself with.When we brought home the puppy, I didn't (and don't) have a huge supply of twist-ties and cord hider things (man, I should be an electrician). So, we had to get creative.

As you can see, we took the kennel box and wrapped it around the coffee table, thus ending Barnacle's foray into the treacherous depths therein. I find it ironic that the box mentions that it's a pet home training tool. Indeed you are a home training tool, kennel box. You saved our puppy from certain electrocution. I can never thank you enough.

January 10th, 2011 (Barnacle)

Meet, Barnacle! (Barney)

He is a 6.5 - 7 week old black lab mix. He's adorable and gets into everything and has basically insisted that we puppy proof the apartment. We're still working on it, so far we've lifted the cables off the floor. But, soon we'll get twist ties and things to make it 100% safe.

We bought food, a tiny leash, a tiny collar, tiny toys and tiny bones. His crate, however is big, because he will be bigger one day. He'll be crate trained and potty-trained (hopefully soon).

My husband wanted to get one very bad and I want a kitten very bad. But, when he said one of the reasons he wanted one was so I wouldn't be alone when he leaves for Germany in two months, I conceded because it's indescribably cute that he's worried about my being alone. I'm a sap. Anyway, I'll have a kitten one day. For now, I have a puppy to wrangle.

January 9th, 2011

So, I've already posted a picture of my husband's anal way to get ready in the morning. This picture is another example of those habits.

In keeping with my shirking my wifely duties, Ski did the laundry today. He also folded it. As you can see, he folds them into tiny squares, and piles them into little towers. These orderly skyscrapers of clothing are rather juxtaposed against the unmade bed, because I haven't ever felt the need to remake the bed after I get out of it. As I see it, I might want to nap later, and I don't want to unpack my bed in order to lay down. That, and I'm lazy.

January 8th, 2011

I don't pretend to be the most domestic woman in the world. I've learned that I'm not too bad at cooking, I'm very bad at cleaning, and I cannot wear pearls and high-heels all day to save my life. I will never be Doris Day. I will (almost) always forget to put on makeup. Some days, I will not shower, just cause I don't feel like it. I will change into yoga pants (I call them this 'cause it makes me feel better than admitting I wear sweat pants for 60% of my life) as soon as I get home from work. On the weekend, you'll be hard-pressed to get me into wearing anything considered acceptable in mainstream society. All in all, I am not a perfect '50's housewife. But, there is one domestic chore I do well.

I make damn good chocolate chip cookie bars. They're my favorite dessert, and I'm not big on sweets. I've been making them since I was old enough to be trusted with an oven (I think around 19). I've perfected my twist on nestle tollhouse's recipe - which is basically less chocolate chips because that recipe OD's on chocolate chips. I also mostly make them because I want to eat the batter. I don't believe the hype about getting salmonella from eating raw cookie dough. Maybe I'll believe when I actually contract salmonella. Until then, I will happily lick the spoon clean any time I make chocolate chip cookie bars.

January 7th, 2011

I didn't post yesterday because I was busy getting star coins in SuperMario for Wii. I now have all the star coins for worlds 1 through 3. I stayed up until 1 am, even though I was really tired, because I really, really needed to get those coins. For some reason it was very important to me.

Anyway, our friend Terry is staying with my husband and I while he clears Fort Polk. For, he is escaping bumble a month before Daniel, and probably two months before I get to go to Germany. Anyway, I took a picture of Daniel and Terry for today's 365 picture.

This is how they sit in the living room - they spoon. In fact, their loving nicknames for one another are "Big Spoon" (Terry) and "Little Spoon" (Daniel). I would find this disturbing as Daniel's wife, however, if you spend any time in the army, you will be bombarded with a lot of homosexual "jokes" among soldiers. I'm actually surprised Don't Ask Don't Tell was JUST repealed, because the soldiers appear to have no problem with being gay, and especially being explicitly gay with their fellow soldiers - including spooning with one in front of your wife.

January 6th, 2011

This picture needs little introduction.

So, I got a chocolate craving this afternoon, right around the time that I remembered about how I stole my husband's chocolate kisses out of the stocking I made for him and put them in my purse. So, I had to basically empty out my purse, because I ate most of my stolen chocolate. What I found was not pretty - three misshapen, hunchback of Notre Dame Hershey kisses. They are lilted downward, as if crying. However, I ate them, because I'm a disgusting person. They were mushy, warm, and delicious.

January 4th/5th, 2011

So, in my last Project 365 there's a picture of me with humongous pupils. The evil eye doctors dilated my eyeballs at my checkup. Well - they're not really evil, they were actually very nice - but getting your eyes dilated sucks, I had a headache for three hours. Anyway, the post for yesterday is kind of a follow-up picture.

I got new glasses. This is how I looked ALL DAY, because my new prescription is stronger and as an added bonus there's an astigmatism spell on them (I don't know how they fix astigmatism, but I assume it's with a magic wand), so my eyes felt, just as my doctor told me they would, like they were being "pulled" all day. It's gotten a little better since yesterday, but I'm still not 100% adjusted - to the glasses. And in general.

Today's picture is a touch more whimsical.

Again - this king was featured in last year's 365. However, since that picture, my Burger King bobblehead has become a pen-holder. The reason is mostly that I get bored and I'm a known fidgeter, so I basically started sticking pens on him and seeing where they would balance. As you can see, I found a few places.

January 3rd, 2011 (Signs)

If you don't know me well, then you probably don't know that in certain aspects I resemble a gypsy/hippy lady. I believe in fate, I believe in tarot cards, shooting stars, blowing wishes on fallen eyelashes, and lastly I believe in signs.Which leads us to my picture of the day. But, first, an introduction.

I've been completely Julie Andrewsing out lately (yes I just used her name as a verb). Anyway, it started with trying to watch The Sound of Music reunion on Oprah. I couldn't watch it on youtube, and so began what can only be described as a Julie Andrews frenzy. I searched for and watched any and all interviews featuring Julie Andrews on youtube. I think the total was somewhere around ten, but I can't remember, my memories from that time are all feverish. However, I was still not satisfied, I had to find the Oprah episode. I couldn't find it on any website,  or anywhere at all - including Oprah's website - which I found incredibly annoying. In the meantime, I added The Sound of Music to my Netflix list and promptly moved it to the top. I then watched Despicable Me and suddenly realized that Julie Andrews was the voice of the mother therein. I was thus sparked to return to my Oprah search and this time I eventually found it, watched it, rewatched it, and then had a dream that I was in the Austrian hills, twirling around and singing - well, not really, though that would've been funny.

Anyway - I thought my Julie Andrews streak was over until I happened to stumble upon this while in line at Walmart:

It was FATE! I couldn't believe that my Julie Andrews fever led me to that particular line - where there just happened to be a display of books, with this one at the forefront. I don't really know why I'm having Julie Andrews signs, why she keeps popping up everywhere, but I felt compelled to buy the book, and I am determined to read and finish it. I daresay that Julie Andrews is my new hero.

January 2nd, 2011

It's the second day of the year, and my husband is working staff duty (he's an MP in the army), which basically means he works twenty-four hours on, then two days off. It sucks that I won't see him until tomorrow evening, when I get off work, but it's also given me the excuse to not get out of my PJs, watch America's Next Top Model, eat the candy out of his Christmas stocking, and not shower. Granted, it's very possible that I would do all these things if he were home, however, since he's not, I don't have the running commentary about it all day.

His working staff duty segues nicely into the picture of the day:

I took this picture before my husband left for work (I woke up at 5am dying of thirst), I stumbled upon this setup and was not at all surprised by it, I see it any day my husband has work the next morning. Now, in most aspects of life, Daniel is not compulsively organized. I'd show you his closet as exhibit A, but I'm a little scared to open the door because I swore I heard growling in there and I'm pretty sure it was a monster. Daniel is really only compulsively organized with getting to work on time and making sure everything is in order before he goes to bed. Maybe this stems from his basic training, or maybe it's just a weird quirk, but I think it's kind of amusing and cute and deserving of my picture of the day.

January 1st, 2011

So, I've done Project 365 for 2 years in a row, why stop now? The only difference this year is that I'll be posting a blog about it, as well as posting the pictures on facebook. Why am I doing this? Well, mostly to bore everyone with my rambling.

Really I'm doing it because I don't write as much as I'd like and this is an excuse to do that. Also - some pictures have more of a story behind them than others, so I'll put those here.

I do not promise salacious stories, nor do I promise that this blog will be interesting. I also cannot promise that I'll post every single day, but I'll try. So, it's here if you're bored out of your mind and feel the need to read about someone's life who is probably much more boring.

And without further ado: Day 1.

I really hate not having a dishwasher. It seems like every time I turn around the sink is full of dirty dishes. I hate scrubbing at stuck on food, and I hate that, no matter what lies Dawn is peddling about smoother skin, my hands are always cracked and dry when I'm finished washing dishes. Now, I'll be honest, I only do the dishes about 25% of the time, my husband has that particular house chore since I'm Always the one cooking. However, I still hate it, and will still complain about it, because I do what I want.