Junk in My Trunk

What doesn’t kill you … makes you tired. I participated in a 20-booth garage/tag sale last Saturday. Enough said. Notions, facts, and criminal acts follow ….


One week home purge. Not a hoarder, should be a snap. Closet #1: filled to the brim with shit belongings. (Could I be a hoarder?) Filter through 800 pounds of baby clothes, shoes that pinch, purses (I wondered where these were), lacrosse sticks and everything in between. Meh!

Would find myself spending way too much time evaluating items. Oh, this is eldest daughter’s first C on a paper. Hoarder, hoarder! Three hours into it, everything went to sale, trash, or Goodwill. A combined 40 hours later, I had my items for the sale. To tag with prices. Another 10 hours and everything was ready to go. Except me. Because I was half-dead with exhaustion. Oh God, do I really want to do this? God: “Yes, you have no $.”

Load’em Up and Move’em Out

At the bright and shiny hour of 5 am, it was time to load the massive amount of sacks and boxes containing my trash/another’s treasure. Whoops. I drive a car that accommodates me and a bottle of water.

 Immediately sent up smoke signals. After promising my Cooking Partner all sorts of “favors” in return for transport, he loaded everything in his truck and we were on our way. (I do not intend to provide any “favors”; it is a woman’s prerogative to change her mind.)

Madness and Mayhem

My sales associates, Partay and the Tamster, were staging our booth when I arrived. We had the best “stuff”, we had the “best” booth, we were all going to retire on our take. The gates opened and mayhem ensued. Sharing:

  1. My parents, always supportive, arrive to check on the situation. Cooking Partner and Daddy (shut up, he’ll always be my “Daddy”) start talking about fishing. I pipe up and say, “CP caught and ate mackerel last week”. My father laughed till he cried. CP just cried. Holy Mackerel – no one eats that! Then my father got on the “had to walk 100 miles roundtrip in the snow to get to school/couldn’t roller skate on gravel roads” poor stories topping it off with, “We were so poor we didn’t have garbage.” Blah, blah, blah. Cooking Partner took this cue to excuse himself. My dog would be crossing and recrossing his legs, waiting for a restroom break, which CP would provide. Afterwards, he took off to go catch anything but mackerel.
  2. The first customers at these sales are always professionals. They sweep up the good “stuff” so they can sell it themselves. They also pay the “big bucks” ($1) because it is the beginning of the sale.
  3. Time does not pass, period, when involved in this sort of enterprise. I was looking for my car keys when Partay said, “Where do you think you are going?” I said, “Home, it’s over, right?”. Her reply, “NO! It’s 9:15 am!” Gag.
  4. There is a criminal element working these sales. A man distracted the three of us (not difficult to do) while his accomplice made off with some of our best “stuff”. Note to garage sale criminals: you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law when we find you. And we will find you.
  5. After about three hours, it’s crying time. Every single customer approaches us with items clearly tagged $8, $15, etc. and offers $1. At first, our response is “The tag says $8!” But they beat us down, repeating “$1” until all three of our heads explode. “Just take the whole bloody booth … for $1”. We are so over and so out.
  6. Do not bring your dogs to garage sales. Especially if they are puppies who eat garbage while you are yakking. Because they hurl brown foam. Brown foam does not help sales. Thank you very much.
  7. These “happenings” are very good for people watching. Seen: perky pregnant moms scheduled for delivery in three days, man in pajamas, and scores of folks in need of dental attention. Oh, and there’s always the couple who haggle you to death, then make off with a huge haul in their Mercedes. Really.

Once it was over, we had accounting and payout. I made $1 and change. I looked and felt like this:

I’m still in recovery. If you want to have a garage sale, contact Partay and the Tamster. Don’t ask me or I will cut you.


A Quickie and Two Hummers

Get your mind out of the gutter, not that kind … a quickie post and two of those ridiculous vehicles! So … 

  • Am baking my ass off – not complaining … sighing heavily, but not complaining.
  • Ok, here’s my read on the reality tv finales:  Pussycat Doll should win Dancing With Stars, hands down.  The skater dude is good, but he’s already won a gold medal at Olympics. Spread the love, judges.  That woman can dance.  American Idol – I think Lee and Crystal should tie – a first for the show – why do you think they did that duet?  If that doesn’t happen, and one wins over the other, it will have no effect on my world as I know it. 
  • Big news on MSN.com:  “Last Two Hummers Roll Off the Line”  – if I was not so damn tired, I would make this R-rated; all I have to say about it is … ho-hum, who gives, not me!
  • A nice woman came to measure my windows this afternoon.  The windows are enormous and located on the second floor.  Where there is no landing.  I was up to my eyeballs in dough, literally.  Cooper was doing his best rabid dog imitation, and her tape measure was … bendy.  Bendy?  What?  The windows are 8 feet tall and you brought a bendy tape measure?  As my rolls go flat, I have to dig around the house, flinging dough hither and yon, to find a NORMAL tape measure.  I paid $50 to have my windows measured.  I think I need a refund.  On further thought, I think I need a drink.  Make that a double.  Gin and tonic, two limes, please and make it snappy.

Later. Maybe.

Yee Haaaaaaa

My Life in Fabric: Week II - lovely colors with curves and loops; Pindler&Pindler: Marrakech

Another really good weekend … LOVE when that happens.  Really.  You cannot know how much I appreciate good weekends.  And, I’ll take a good week whenever available as well.  Who wouldn’t?
  • Paid the bills.  Not usually considered even a pleasant activity, but these days, just having the ability to do so makes me really happy.
  • Baked exquisite Swedish Visiting Cake (see Almond Ecstasy post).  Ate almost entire cake in one day.  Headed to Dress Barn and/or Omar the Tentmaker for something to wear to work tomorrow. So worth it.

Sweet, sweet, sweet ... love flowers and someone sweet knows it!

  •  Went to see “Date Night” on Date Night.  Laughed and laughed. Then headed off to eat my weight in crawfish.  See Omar the Tentmaker ASAP.
  • Signed yet another neighborhood petition.  I live on Renegade Row in my townhouse community; a number of us will sign any petition that has the potential to ruffle the feathers of our maintenance company.  Instead of maintaining our homes and security, the company focuses on the important things … like harassing the homeowners who pay for maintenance which is practically non-existant.  This particular petition was circulated by a homeowner who likes to put festive inflatable things in her yard … Easter bunny, Santa, that kind of stuff.  She’s received a nasty letter claiming her two-story pink bunny was offensive and NOT appropriate for our area.  Sheesh, it’s not like she’s landscaping with blow up sex dolls.  When presented with a huge petition supporting her inflations at upcoming board meeting, perhaps said company will get a clue about what it was hired to do and maybe, oh, I don’t know, fix some roofs, throw a little paint here and there, hammer some stuff. Rebellion is empowering!
  • Am well aware I take crooked, not so great photos posted here, but just the fact that I can do it is huge to me.
  • Had a great little emailarama with Lady Di, citizen of the world and Martha’s Vineyard.  We are going to hit Breadmaking 101 full force at MV in June. Can’t wait.
  • Miss Peach paid for her upcoming European tour.  She has worked her ass off to do this.  Proud moment.  College Girl may have snagged an internship at a music management company for the summer.  Yes!
  • And last, but certainly not least, Cowgirl has put yet another MS 150 behind her.  Woo Hoo.

ENOUGH about me, how about you?

Happy week.


Sweet Saturday

Whew.  Have been baking my brains out since … 7 am?  That is a good thing.  Am trying to fill the freezer.  After baking 9 hours one night and 7 hours another, I finally figured out that I need freezer inventory.  Always unintentionally take the long route when figuring things out.  Freezer now stuffed with sourdough, orange rolls, cinnamon rolls, and yeast rolls.  Woo Hoo!  My house smells like a sweet shop.  My bed is looking really good right about now.  Happy Easter!

PMS + Entitlement/Not Amused

Can you spank your children if they are 21 and 22?  And they are taller and stronger?  I may give it a try, anyway.

Oldest just called from the airport.  She is clearly pissed about something.  I think it’s because I’m not at the airport picking her up.  Hello, when I need to go to the airport, I drive, unless someone volunteers to take me.  It’s also a problem (?) because I picked up her car at the inspection place while she was gone.  Her car is here.  So now she has to take a cab from the airport AND pick up her car.  I don’t put up with this sort of bs, so I asked her what her problem was?  She said I ask too many questions and she’s exhausted.  Really?

Youngest is out with her dad, then out for the evening. She also says I ask too many questions.  She walked Cooper for me today.  I’m overwhelmingly grateful. She’s kind but she doesn’t like all the bread baking that is going on around here.  It’s too tempting.  Maybe it would take on a certain je nais se quoi if she knew that all the baking is providing her monthly allowance. Oy. I wonder what the Episcopal version of “Oy” is?  I think it’s a fifth of something, down the hatch.  Sounds good to me.

It has to be mutual PMS week. Too bad, so sad. I think I’ll spank them, just for the hell of it.  If I can catch them …..

98 Things: Part One

I know, I know … normal people write about 100 Things.  But I want to leave some space for spontaneity so I am going to list 98 Things about whatever comes to mind.  Just the thought of counting that high, at this moment, wears me out.

  1. Went to bed after midnight.  No alcohol involved.
  2. Woke up at 5 am this morning to bake.
  3. Cooking with garlic at 5 am makes me gag.
  4. I love my bed because it is poofy like a marshmallow and I sink into it.
  5. When my daughters come over/home, they think I’m too skinny and don’t have any food in the pantry.  The too skinny part is correct but I’m trying to put on some weight; the pantry part would be incorrect.  I don’t have any food they like in the pantry.
  6. I am not strong.  I have to be, especially lately, but I would rather not have circumstances that require so much emotional strength training.  Like who wouldn’t?
  7. I love hidden object and match-3 computer games; at the moment, my favorites are Pastry Passion, Go Go Gourmet, 2 Tasty, and Alchemy Deluxe (not a hog or match).
  8. In the 8th grade, my friend, KK, and I made a requirement list of qualities the men we would marry would have to possess.  I still have it.  We were insane and obviously operating with zero info on the male species.
  9. I used to win contests.  You have to enter to win.  I won a national contest and they sent me a big check.  Note to contenders:  the government gets 1/2 – or at least it did when I was winning.
  10. I don’t want to be famous or infamous.
  11. Prayer is powerful. Period.
  12. Am an emotional person, but not terribly sentimental.  So there is no excuse for all the junk around here.
  13. I think Bulgari au the blanc smells absolutely beautiful.
  14. Am so challenged when it comes to make-up; don’t like it, feels like I’m being embalmed from the outside in.  Need to wear it so I don’t scare animals and small children but most of the time I don’t. Wear it.  Can’t speak for animals/children. 
  15. Movies I can’t watch again:  Gone With The Wind, Knocked Up, Green Dolphin Street, Citizen Kane, The Wizard of Oz.
  16. Movies I watch more than twice:  Under the Tuscan Sun, All About Eve, Sunset Boulevard, In America, Saving Grace, Waiting for Guffman, Bull Durham.
  17. I think A. J. Jacob’s first book was brilliantly funny.
  18. I will never understand Some People.  Got it.
  19. Never say “never” or “always”.  For obvious reasons.
  20. When meat is fully cooked, it’s “done”; when everything else is completed, it is “finished”.

And due to bread-induced sleep deprivation, I will finish my list tomorrow. Maybe.

Rock On

Hurray!  I’m out of my funk!  Funny how that happens.  Yesterday afternoon, I was wallowing in bread dough and planning an enormous “woe is me” tearfest for the evening.  “Oh, who am I, what am I going to do about x, y, z?”. There were things to do before I could indulge my potentially pitiful self, so the fest was put on hold.

Miss Peach and I were going to dinner at my sister’s house.  Family dinner with our parents and my nephew.  The meal was Italian, and I was, of course, in charge of carbs.  Got my trusty bread making gear out, put on my Italian thinking cap, and went to work.  Assembled all the usual yeast bread ingredients and then threw in fresh parmesan, fresh rosemary, minced garlic, chives, basic, oregano and got on with the business of making dinner rolls.  Because my lower lip was dragging on the floor, I didn’t use a recipe.  Who cares? 

Miss Peach arrived, beat up from teaching wily third-graders all day.  The aromatic scent coming from the oven immediately grabbed her interest.  The rolls came out and we sampled.  They were delish. She and I went on to have our weekly “visit” and it was good.  When MP and I lived together briefly this summer, it was a 24-hour-two-cats-in-a-small-bag deal.  After she found her own job, pad, life … our relationship has improved 110-percent.  I am proud of her.  Not because she is my daughter, but because she is industrious, passionate about her work, and knows how to have fun … a lot of fun.  Miss Peach is the s*&t  and being with her improved my mood immensely.

So we loaded up the rolls and off we went to dinner.  It was so much fun.  My family fairly gobbled up all the rolls, almost before dinner.  They were not being polite, they loved them.  Rah!  My family is not normal, thank God.  We have dance contests on Christmas Eve, opinion fests and shocking disclosure ceremonies whenever possible, and we bitch and laugh a lot.  The Saint (my brother-in-law) fits right in; he is very careful to measure his words around us as he knows us to be an “off with your head” clan when provoked.

Dinner was fun.  My mom, with only two weeks of radiation left, looks more beautiful than ever.  Don’t care what’s up with that – it is.  And it is good.  My sister, the Unstoppable Entrepreneur, ordered four large pans of rolls for a weekend trip.  My mom ordered more for her supper club.  Really, I must be on to something – these people would be the first to say, “Are you trying to kill me?”, if something I made tasted bad. 

Now I feel like I’m back on track – a different track – but in motion.  Will not focus on loaves of bread, but rolls as they are easier for people to freeze and/or eat.  Check.  Miss Peach gets spring break from third grade and is off to the Wine Country.  Check.  College Girl will be here Friday, check, before she heads to Las Vegas. Check? I’ve got a million rolls to bake when I’m not working, socializing, and avoiding tax preparation.

Forgot to have pity party and weep buckets of tears.  Awesome!


Monday – Rah!

It’s Monday.  Life is good.  It doesn’t matter to me that I’m still under the weather.  Nor does it matter that Cooper the Constipated made me walk him FOR AN HOUR in the cold this morning.  So what?  No issues, everything is all right. Already home from work, waiting for bread to rise.  Today I like/love:

  • Patty, “The Matchmaker”:  her client has a permanent “surprised” look on her face; Patty calls it a “Force Five Hurricane Facelift” – gotta love her
  • Bode Miller’s Olympic inspiring redemption – just shows what is possible if you do the work to get your shit together
  • My friend, T, is on the mend – woo hoo!
  • My friend, Teri, gave me a 16-year-old sourdough starter.  Starter maintenance is akin to raising a small animal. 
  • “Best In Show” is on reminding me of my favorite movie, “Waiting for Guffman”
  • Received gorgeous pink roses the other day 🙂
  • Pink roses always remind me of Cowgirl’s mom
  • Am getting orders for my baked goods (!)

Enough glee.  Back to the oven. Later.


I love today.  Actually saw the sun!  A few “thinks” are crowding my brain:

  • Am a crazed baker. Have logged in cheese/bacon bread, white bread, cheese/jalapeno bread, cinnamon bread, and orange bread in the last two days. THIS IS NUTS.  Nuts …. need to make nut bread!
  • I am no better than anybody else.  I know this.  The earlier we learn that the ground is level – regarding ourselves and other inhabitants of the world – the better.  I’m late but I get it.
  • If the Olympian lugers were having such a heinous time with the speed of the track in practice runs, why wasn’t this addressed and corrected  before the young Georgian athlete was killed?  Horrid.
  • Money can’t buy class. Nor can it buy you a soul.  Period. It can make you comfortable.  It can be used for good, to help the helpless. It can buy frippery to make you look fine on the outside. But a pig is a pig is a pig when your soul is rotten to the core.
  • Found my favorite mixing bowls – a set of 6 – on sale at Sur la table; they are also made by the company. So great.
  • My dear friend, T, has been in the hospital for almost a week with a very dangerous illness.  She lives in another city.  She still can’t have visitors.  Prayer is powerful, and that’s a good thing because there is nothing else I can do for her right now.
  • Men who pay attention to the details are dreamy.
  • I read a million books. Have never been in a book club. Odd.
  • The coolest women are in my bunco group.  I don’t play bunco.  I go to see these funny, interesting, wonderful people.
  • Am concerned with the proofread button used in posting here; it does not spell check well at all. Blah!

That orange bread is FUNKY.  Now have an almond poppyseed pound cake in the oven. I accidently turned on “The Bachelor” (my bad). That creepy Jake is sexing with 3-1/2 women. Wretched. Need to get over that dumb ass show and get a life!


Pile O’Projects

I am the worst when it comes to getting things done.  Not fun things. Home things. Like becoming and staying organized,  focusing on one project until it is complete, keeping all things neat, tidy, and “just so”.  I don’t have ADD; I am a slug. Can always find time for what I want to do and never make time for what I should do until I’m under the gun. Which makes the things I should do that much more unsavory.

I have piles of projects all over the place. Get all into something, then move on to something else.  I want to put up this unfinished business.  But that means I have to clean out the cabinets and closets so I’ll have a place to put the piles.  The cabinets and closets are bursting with my older projects. This conundrum leaves me no choice but to completely ignore the cabinets, shelves, and piles and go bake bread, read, and avoid all responsibilities. Sure, I could start at A to get to B to arrive at the nirvana others experience when there’s “a place for everything and everything in its place”.  I just don’t feel like doing that. 

 Looks are so deceiving.  My home looks bright and shiny.  But God help the person who mistakes the coat closet for the powder room; they will certainly be buried under an avalanche of knitting, needlepoint canvases, and to-do lists. When I get a responsibility nudge, better up that homeowner’s umbrella policy. Not now, later!  I’m very busy baking bread and reading Vanity Fair!

Am lucky there’s no one around to make me feel guilty. Except Cooper. He doesn’t care. I think Dennis Leary said, “All men want are sex and a sandwich”.  He  doesn’t know Cooper. All Coop wants are dog food and a walk.  We are perfect for each other.