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Archive for 2007

Making the difference

Thursday, April 12th, 2007

I don’t like to write about my family publicly, or even say/write their names… but today is an exception (sort of). Today I want to give props to my wonderful husband (T-man). Not only does he do so much for me and our family, he’s out there volunteering and helping others as well. Because I am so [expletive]ing proud of him and in light of April 15th kicking off National Volunteer Week… I’m bending my rules and posting about T-man for receiving the Clatsop County 2006 Outstanding Volunteer Award.

Not only does T-man put in many hours on the job, my endless honey-do lists and happily volunteering where I volunteer (my quilt guild) and still have much time for family time… but somehow he finds and makes the time to volunteer with the Clatsop County Sheriff’s Department Underwater Recovery Team. Being a diver is not always exciting or full of adventure. Most of the time it’s a recovery mission of the most tragic of circumstances. I know it’s something I couldn’t do, and all the more why I’m so proud my T-man does this and does it with such compassion and caring. Photo: left to right… T-man, K9-man (K9-man nominated T-man for the award). Thank you to Clatsop County’s Volunteer Coordinator Brandi Helligso and the Clatsop County Board of Commissioners for the nice reception and ceremony!

And speaking of Clatsop County (jeeze, have I mentioned that enough yet? Or as I like to call it… Catsup County), anyhoo… FINALLY something smokin’ hot and cool spent with our tax dollars! Yes, this is my Maggie’s new big sister… K9-man’s new car. Is it wrong to love a car? Because I really love my Magnum. All the more why I’m so excited over K9-man’s new car. Of course Big Sis is packed with WAY more goodies then my Maggie (and makes Maggie look like a go-cart), and not to mention can run faster and is armed and can make someone pee their pants when they see her in the rear-view mirror! Paying property tax is no fun, but I like to think this is where my entire check went to - if only that came with driving rights!!! A favor to anyone driving around Catsup County… if you see K9-man and you’re both stopped at a light…. PLEASE - slide your sunglasses to the tip of your nose, slowly tilt your head down and look above your glasses and say, “Nice car… but Monica’s is nicer”.

And if K9-man’s car is not cool enough… here’s another baby in the county. Look at this smokin’ hot Charger (and hopefully not in your rear-view mirror)!

Fratellie’s beware.

Tagged and lovin’ it!

Wednesday, April 11th, 2007

For the last couple of days I’ve been struggling with a new service provider and many, many, many hours on the phone to “Bob”, “Steve” and “Jane” in Bangladesh. Repeating over and over and over “I’m a Mac user” and “I don’t have IE - I’m a Mac user”. What really sent me on a fast train to Crabbyland was having to miss a sewing day with my guild. But it’s done.

So anyhoo… I’m at the point where everything seems to be squared away and working. Fearing to check my email, thinking something is going to blow up or disappear, I hold my breath and click on my Apple Mail icon. And then I heard a harp, and then the clouds parted, and then a ray of sunshine shined down on this one email… an email from the talented and inspiring Anne of Bunny Tales saying she had tagged me with the Thinking Blogger Award. So what this is, you get tagged and you have to write about five blogs that inspire you and bring you joy. Sounds so easy. Right? Not. It would be easy if I could write about ONE HUNDRED AND FIVE! The downside is having to leave out those you love, and there are so many I love.

And if being tagged by Anne wasn’t enough, PKM lets me know we were both tagged by Brenda of Little Acorns as well. I’m shaking my head in disbelief like a cartoon character shaking it’s head to and fro (and clanging like a cow bell) and re-checking that I read it right… they are writing about me? Moi? I could easily let this go to my head and it could be time to go shopping for a bigger hat… but I’m too honored, too surprised and too over joyed! Thank you Brenda and Anne!

So on to my list of 5 blogs that inspire me. I really would love to write about more. My “Lunchbox” blogroll has all of my faves, and I hope you will nibble on some good clicky snacks from the lunchbox. :o)

Wrens Nest - I think Jackie was one of the first bloggers to put me on her blogroll, so she has a special place in heart for that. Jackie was also the hostess for my first swap and made me feel welcome and at ease. I was such a newbie to blogging and swapping and Jackie welcomed me and helped me learn the ropes. Jackie is a talented with fabric, felt, food, family and life. If a blog could have grace, then Wren’s Nest has it. The Jackie O or Grace Kelly of blogging.

Prairie Mouse - My down-under friend Louise makes THE MOST beautiful softies, and then she photographs them so beautifully they should be in a book. My favorite is Munk’s trip to the beach. All of Louise’s creations are expertly handcrafted and each has a darling story to tell. It’s hard not to just want to jump into one of Louise’s photographs and get lost in enchantment.

Creative Little Daisy - Autum shares not only her beautiful crafts and inspirations, but she also has a way with words like no one I know. Autum can write about weeds and with her words they suddenly become a beautiful bouquet of wild daisies in a jam jar in a secret corner of a garden, under a shade tree on top of a quilt reading a sweet vintage children’s book. Autum is talented in so many ways, but most of all I adore her kindness and living a good life and passing it on.

Allsorts - Now I’m sure Jenny has been tagged a couple of thousand times already, but I’m not going to pass this up - and rave about her anyway. I think it was Jenny’s blog that I saw for the first time that was a “crafty blog” and turned my blogging life upside down. It was Jenny who unknowingly got me hooked on the crafty blogging crack. Jenny’s blog is not only filled with yummy inspirations and stunning photos, her blog itself is a work of art. Graphic, bright and happy… just like her and everything she creates and writes. Someone once posted a comment on her blog that said something like “that’s so very Mary E”. I really wanted to comment on the comment… “Um, that’s so very Jenny B”!

Liquid Sky Arts - My friend Kathleen is an AMAZING photographer and I’m in awe of everything she snaps. I could easily make each and every one of her photos a flickr favorite of mine. Because of Kathleen’s photos, I now look at things and think, “how would Kathleen see it”, and suddenly what I’m looking at takes on new beauty. Kath has inspired me to look when I didn’t look before. Kathleen’s talent does not stop at photography… she’s an artist and gardening diva as well. It was tough for me to write about Kathleen and not the talented Wende and talented Paula as well. The four of us are a little crafting foursome and get together for craft nights. All three inspire me! Our last craft night we surrendered to the idea that it’s not craft night… but wine/food/laughter night. Oh, and Kathleen has blackmail material on me… quite possibly why she edged out Paula and Wende in this slot. ;o)

PamKittyMorning - This may look like I have six bloggers I posted about, but since Pam has been tagged twice (on the same blogs as me, talk about being an honor for me!), this is officially an unofficial non-six. Like the bonus number in the lottery. It doesn’t count, but it’s worth millions!

Pam is THE Queen of the Crafty Bloggers. Already she’s a celeb, and is on the fast track to uber celebrity-hood! She quilts, she takes us on her trips, she writes about the ordinary and through her witty words become extraordinary events. Always sharp, always quick, always inspiring. I honestly think that Spring Market should be renamed PamKittyMorning Goes To Market.

Aside from being witty, funny, talented and inspiring… Pam is kind, generous and thoughtful. I can’t even count how many times I’ve gotten MailBox Love from Pam. And not just MailBlox love… but little things she does in secret and surprises you (like the time she searched out my childhood home and photographed it for me). Everybody Loves PamKittyMorning and no day should start without a glass of of fresh squeezed PKM. I heart you Pa-mela, my TSAB. Super powers activated!

Bloggy Love

Sunday, April 1st, 2007

Just another day at Casa de Zombie, pluggin’ away at mindless tasks (read: surfing flickr instead of doing work)… when the T-man brings up the mail and says I have a package. Hmmm. I didn’t order anything (this week - snicker, snicker). “It’s from New Mexico” says the perplexed blog widower. “NEW MEXICO… OMG… Raesha is from NEW MEXICO” I shout with glee (and scaring DH with my squealing and my flailing arms). Kind and sweet Raesha. I just love this woman and want to be like her.

So inside the package is a beautiful card Raesha made, a magnet from her trip to the San Diego Zoo and a little package of what I thought were bunny cookies. I said to T-man, “I can’t eat these… they are too cute”. To my delight, the “cookies” were little bunny ornaments. ~Whew… they’ll last forever! And now the bunnies guard my Cadbury Eggs. They shine in cuteness, but lack in security skills as the chocolicious eggs keep disappearing. Thank you Raesha! I’m so touched and so tickled you were thinking of me (especially when you were at the zoo). HA… should it be a surprise you were thinking of ME at the ZOO?!?!

Mimi takes a vacation - Home

Sunday, April 1st, 2007

Home at last

Few words. Much Joy. Nap time now. Sew time later.

The Boys

Sunday, April 1st, 2007

With a family full of girls (the dogs, the chickens, maybe the finches - Sid and Bette), it was time to add some boys to the mix. A year ago we had to say good-bye to our beloved cat Sonoma. We got Sonoma at the Hawaiian Human Society, and knew she was just right for us when she climbed on to DH’s lap and made herself at home there. Sonoma was well traveled… Hawai’i to California (a 5 week pit stop) and then on to Oregon. Not quite as well traveled as Mimi… but a lot for a cat. Anyhoo… Sonoma’s time had come and we wern’t ready to have a new cat - until now. DS and I were at our local farm store getting dog food and chicken feed, and there at the check-out was the “store cat” that we ooohd and aaaahd over. Long story short, DS and I headed on over to our local animal shelter as soon as we left the farm store.

The Clastop County Animal Shelter has a nice little cat room where you can take the cats out of the cages and give them a “test drive”. It was a Friday, and we had an hour before closing time. We used that hour in what felt like minutes. The grey/black kitty we called “York” (not his shelter name, but what we called him). We narrowed it down to two cats and agreed to “sleep on it” and come back tomorrow. But you know… we had already begun The Process since we named them already.

And this is Mochi. Mochi (not his shelter name), was the other half of Team MochiYork that we couldn’t decide on. So now it’s Saturday and DS and I are back in the cat room. Test driving all the cats, and AGAIN we narrow it down to Mochi and York. We also test drive them around some of the dogs at the shelter to see how they do… and they passed that test with flying colors! So after two hours of being at the shelter (and getting to know the nice staff as well and other potential pet parents thinking we worked there)… home we go with York and Mochi. Both are about 10 months old and still have kitten like attitudes.

And now to meet The Girls - Liberty and Madison. Such excitement and happy chaos. Madison is obsessed with her new friend Mr. Mochi. It took a few days, but the two are becoming fast friends and follow each other around, both vying for our attention. Liberty (who is older) is only slightly amused and only cares about our continued attention towards her.

Everyone at Casa de Zombie was a buzz with the new family members. Everyone but DH. The T-man was out of town for two weeks on business, and ooops… I forgot to tell him. So in comes T-man at 0-dark-30 after a red-eye from Tampa, slips into bed for a nap… and here comes a furry visitor to check him out. Talk about a surprise when you’re sleeping! If it had been me, I’d have been screaming from fright. I guess the T-man is used to all the surprises that await him every time he walks through the door. York spends most of his time hiding under the staircase in my laundry room… but he’s slowly coming out more and more, especially at night when he thinks it’s playtime and my feet are toys.

Mimi takes a vacation - Homeward Bound!

Saturday, March 31st, 2007

Hello Mum!

I’m almost home, just a few minutes now. Are you ready? I’m ready!

Say… these guys are cute! Excuse me a second Mum, my nice rescuers are tying to communicate with me…

[Lunch? Do I have plans? Why, no… I have no plans or anything pressing. I’m available for lunch. Let’s go!]

Um, Mum… seems like my nice rescuers received an *emergency call* at Fort George. I’ll be home sorta soon!

Mimi takes a vacation - Astoria Detour!

Wednesday, March 28th, 2007

Dear Mum… Just a quick note. I was on my way up the hill from the bus station, when ooops… OH $h1t! I’m sure I’ll be rescued very soon. In the mean time - my new friend Anderson is keeping me company while we wait for the Coast Guard to rescue us.

Special thanks to my friend Kathleen for snapping this incredible photo and allowing me to use it. If you want to see Kathleen’s other amazing photos, check our her flickr and blog. Give yourself a few hours to take in her amazing talent! Thank you Kath! - Monica

Mimi takes a vacation - Ess Eff

Monday, March 26th, 2007

All I can say is - It’s ABOUT TIME I heard from THAT GIRL. Jetting around while I sit and wait for her. Taking a deep cleansing breath and a quick Ohmmm Shamya… there, I’m somewhat better now. Anyhoo… sounds like this is Mimi’s last stop. We shall see.

Dear Mum,

This is my last stop. I promise. For real. I mean, I really couldn’t just pass through Ess Eff without seeing La Familia now could I. I took BART into Walnut Creek and Uncle Marco picked me up at the staion. Before taking me to see Omi & Ito and Auntie Kinh… we stopped at Marco’s big shot studio. Marco said he had a big surprise for me (I was secretly hoping he was going to cast me in one of his Comcast TV commercials), and the surprise was a recording gig for my own hit song! Paula, Randy, Simon… are your paying attention? What ever… I don’t need you - I have Marco. I’m my own Amimican Idol It was fun, though it wasn’t easy to sing, especially since I can’t even talk. We had fun. We laughed, we ate Top Ramen, went out for Sushi, went racing down Ygnacio… it all went too fast. Oh, and once my song is finished in production - it’s going to hit the airwaves.

Marco took me into The City so I could catch my flight to PDX. On our way to SFO, I asked Marco if it was ok for me to take a quick spin down Lombard Street. Marco encourged me to go speedy fast, so I did! Gawd, you two are SOOOO brother and sister. Two peas in a pod. Anyhoo… Little did I know EssEffPD was waiting at the bottom, and well, lets just say I charmed my way out of ticket.

This is my last email, as I’m just about to board my flight. I do hope you’ll let me go on weekend trips once I get home. I’ve really got the travel bug and want to see more - especially Berkeley… oh how I wanted Marco to take me there, but he said “another time”.

Off to PDX!

Mimi takes a vacation - Moooooo!

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

~Whew… I was getting worried about Mimi when she didn’t show up in California for a visit with my family. Seems she took a left turn and headed east.

Hi Mum!

I was just about to hop on BART after I landed at SFO, when I suddenly heard all this chatter about Stephen Colbet and Willie Nelson feuding about some ice cream. Being the curious little minx that I am, I HAD to learn more. Turns out Stephen and Willie have their own ice cream from Ben and Jerry’s and Stephen didn’t like Willie stealing some of his thunder. Well… I had to get in on some of that ice cream action myself, and off to Vermont I went! Easy as pie, Ben & Jerry’s lets you make your own ice cream (and a little help from PhotoShop)!

Just as I was ready to leave Vermont, one of Stephen’s peeps told me he got wind of my new Ben and Jerry’s and was not too happy about it. That night on The Colbert Report - there was Stephen yapping about ME! Me… on The Word! OMG… what have I done?!?! Not wanting anyone to be upset with me… I head down to NYC. I snuck into Comedy Central and into Stephen’s dressing room.

After the show, Stephen came into his dressing room and found me. Oh you should have seen the look on his face! “I come in peace, I come in peace” I babbled. I could barely talk. Once I explained to Stephen who I was and why I was there… he started to see the true me, that I was just this little sweet thing on my way home (via the world) to live with my new mum. We talked, I told him about my travels, what my future plans were… and no sooner we were fast friends and I got a big thumbs up from my new friend Stephen! Of course I left out the part about how cute I thought Jon Stewart is… but that’s better left unsaid. Oh - and Stephen claims he “doesn’t see color”. Well, I think it’s safe to say - I’m his new aqua friend.

PS… turns out Willie Nelson was interested in meeting me too. But he soon found out my zig-zag was a “stitch”… and well, that meet-n-greet just didn’t happen.

I’m on my way to California and then up to Oregon!

Love and stitches,

High on the crafty crack again…

Wednesday, March 21st, 2007

Just when I think I’ve got a grip on my current projects coming to completion, there I go blogging and see the latest rage - Grannies. I don’t know how to crochet and couldn’t read those Einsteinishy instructions to save my life, and yarn is not my medium… but then… OMG… there, on Jenny’s blog were her grannies and I just got that crafting tingle when I saw them. There’s also a big Granny Along sweeping blogland (and OMG… you SHOULD SEE the grannies being made!).

I don’t even know if I’m making the grannies correctly - but what the heck, I’m on crafty crack! I picked my colors from my IKEA lamp and pillow. At first I was shy about using red with bright pink, but both those colors are in the lampshade/pillow - and you know, they work well together. Those Swede’s know what they are doing!

So far I’m having a lot fun with this and fun to do something out of my element, but I have to say for me I’m not hooked (pun intended, HA). I’m missing my fabric already. Dear sweet cotton love.

UPDATED: Those of you trying to resist… look away. Umm. You’re still reading this. LOOK AWAY! Ok, they’re not looking. Autum sent me a link to a GREAT tute at Crochet Cabana. THERE ARE PHOTOS and words! Looking at the instructions, I see I’ve been doing THREE things wrong, most important my error when changing colors. My new enlightenment is going to make this so much easier!

I’ve also been wanting to try that ripple stitch, and am so clueless on how to. I’ve googled tutes, but it’s been all Greek to me. Autum said she found videos on YouTube. I’m going to look for them and post them. Thank you Autum!

UPDATED, again: Here is what I found on YouTube. If anyone knows of more videos, I’ll be happy to post them here!

Farting around with needle & thread and then blogging about it.

Monica Solorio-Snow
Happy Zombie

Pacific Wonderland
Astoria, Oregon

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