Sunday, April 28, 2019

Sunday Stealing--Favorites

She lives!  Well, I pretty much failed at the April Challenge.  I'm still fighting the lack of spoons that has been brought about by the near-simultaneous death of my Dad and my beloved dog Ginger.

Really enjoyed doing this Sunday Stealing.  Hope you enjoy reading it.

Your favorite songs

Well, it’s always changing, but right now I’m partial to these:

From Alison Krauss and Union Station’s album Live: Choctaw Hayride

From Mandolin Orange’s album Blindfaller: Wildfire

From the Lumineer’s album Cleopatra: Ophelia  (love the piano riff in this so much)

From The Dave Mathew Band’s album Crash (two step)

Jubal’s Kin eponymous album: Cuckoo Bird

Your favorite bands

Again, always changing.  Always at the top of the list:  Santana, Dave Matthews Band, U2, Stevie Ray Vaughn.  However, for some time I’ve been partial to Bluegrass and traditional Appalachian music.  I’m listening to Mandolin Orange, Alison Krauss and Union Station, Ola Belle Reed, Roscoe Holcomb, and Jubal’s Kin among others.  I’m listening to a lot of Smithsonian Folkways recordings (you really have to check them out, the range of amazing music is extensive).  This is my favorite Folkways recording right now--it will give you chills.....the style is called lined-out hymnody--here's a great article about this style of singing--these hymns are considered the oldest English-language religious music passed down orally in America.

Your favorite actors or actresses

Cate Blanchett in anything.  Tilda Swinton as the angel Gabriel in Constantine.  Keanu Reeves in the John Wick movies.  Maggie Smith in anything.  Brendan Coyle in Downton Abbey.  Kenneth Branagh in Much Ado About Nothing and Henry V.

Your favorite books

Frank Herbert’s Dune, most of Guy Gavriel Kay’s books, especially Tigana; Scott Sigler’s GFL series, especially The Rookie.  The Expanse series by James S. A. Corey, especially Leviathan Wakes.  Green Darkness by Anya Seton.  The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory.  The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova and so very many more.

Your favorite movies

John Wick 1 and 2, The Matrix, The Fifth Element, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Constantine, Black Panther, Thor: Ragnarok, Guardians of the Galaxy, Pretty Woman, The Martian, The Devil Wears Prada, Much Ado About Nothing, Hellboy (the Ron Perlman version).  The first three Harry Potter movies.  The Oceans movies (Ocean’s Eight was fabulous). 

Your favorite TV shows

We are in the golden age of television in my opinion.  So much good TV out there over the last several years.  Favorites include Mad Men, Downton Abbey, Victoria, The Expanse, Star Trek: Discovery, The Magicians, The Umbrella Academy, The Tudors, Person of Interest, Dr. Who, Law and Order and Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Orphan Black.

Your favorite foods/drinks

Drinks—good coffee, iced tea, a fountain Coke from McDonalds for a treat (I don’t know what they do, but they have the BEST fountain Cokes, hands down)

Foods—green chile stew, carne adovada, a great cheeseburger, chips and salsa, honeycrisp apples, my hub’s spaghetti and meatballs, salads of all kinds, seafood gumbo, Lexington style pork BBQ, subs from Jersey Mikes.

Your favorite animal

Dogs.  Our sweet girl Maddie is amazing.  

Our cats can be…challenging.  We never set out to have FOUR.  It just sort of happened.  This is why I could never foster animals…I’d want to keep every one of them.  Anyhoo, my favorite of our kitties is Ellie.  We call her sleepy-time snuggle bunny.  She just curls up next to you and purrs all night.  She’s the most “cat-like” of our cat family.

Your favorite scents

Gardenias.  We had a gardenia bush under my window in the house we lived in when we first moved to Mississippi in 1969.  I was 7.  When I smell gardenias, it’s like an instant memory train to that house, that time, and my childhood.  Love the smell of rain (water is a blessing here in the high desert).  Our cat Randall’s fur…he smells like snow.  Sandalwood.  The smell of the ocean.  Bacon cooking.

Your hobbies/ things you do in your free time

Read. Watch movies.  I’m an indoor girl.

Your pet peeves

  • The asshole (and his friends) running the country right now. 
  • My office (a tiny room I share with 2 other RNs) in a hospital built the year I was born—it is either freezing cold or blazing hot with no in-between. 
  • Inconsiderate people. 
  • Lack of manners—this one REALLY gets me.  I grew up in the South, and I still Ma’am and Sir people older than me.  Please, thank you, excuse me—don’t people learn this stuff anymore?

Things you collect

Books, Pusheen stuff, Funko Pop figures of my favorite characters, movies.

Things you like to swap

Don’t do any swapping

Places you've been

British Columbia, Yukon Territory, Alaska, Puerto Rico, and much of the US with the exception of some of the Midwest and Maine (really, really need to get there at some point)

Places you'd like to visit

Europe.  Japan.  The aforementioned Maine. New York City and New Orleans again.  San Antonio.  Montreal.  Spain.

The songs you dislike

Metal.  Rap.  The whole “boobs, beers, and pickups” genre of modern country music (uggghhh).

The movies you dislike

Not a fan of classic movies in black and white.  Torture porn horror like Saw, Hostel, etc.  Not a fan of chick lit type movies.

The TV shows you dislike

Big Bang Theory—ugghh.  Pretty much anything with a laugh track.  This Is Us type shows.  Sci-fi with crappy production values. 

Classes you liked in school

History, Literature, Anatomy and Physiology, Sociology.

Classes you disliked in school

Statistics.  How I hated Statistics.

Crafts you would like to learn

I have determined I am the most UN-crafty person on the planet.  I’ve tried, oh I’ve tried, to learn various crafts, but I rapidly lose interest.  Perfectionism seeps in, and when my whatever doesn’t come out like the picture I’m done.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Sunday Stealing--Fill in the Blanks

It's always nice when you get an unexpected gift or check in the mail.

Oh, that crazy kitty.  (This was a weird one, lol)

It's a sure sign of fall when it’s Balloon Fiesta time.

Are we having tacos again??!.  (Just so we’re clear, I never get tired of tacos in any form)

My heart breaks for all the shelter pups and kitties that haven’t yet found their furever homes.

Do you believe in life on other planets? I love what Carl Sagan said, “The universe is a pretty big place. If it's just us, seems like an awful waste of space."

I'm a registered nurse.

I was up at 5am this morning (thanks, kitties).

I hate it when the moon is full (because of how our house is oriented, it shines through my windows at night—I finally got blackout curtains because of it).

When we moved here to New Mexico, I knew I was home.

Green chile stew is the best!

Underneath it all I’m really an introvert.

Oh! And thanks for turning our country into a laughingstock you tweeting twit (I still cannot believe that racist a&%hole is our president).

And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to having a nice clean house, tomorrow my plans include going to work and Sunday, I want to go to the moves and see Shazam!  (methinks this got a little out of order).

Saturday, April 13, 2019

April Challenge--A few more days

Get the prompts here

12.  What is a perfect day?   Staying in a 5 star hotel in a small city full of history.  Great meals.  Sightseeing. 

13.  How do you make decisions?  Depends on the decision.  Some of them, I go with my “gut”.  Others, with my “heart”.  And a lot of them with very detailed planning and consideration of every factor to the point that it takes me FOREVER to make the decision.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

April Challenge--Catching Up


8.  Three things you and your best friend have in common

My best friend is my husband.  We both love science fiction, movies, and great food, among many other things.

9.  Your life story in five sentences

Moved from Massachusetts to Mississippi, Mississippi to Connecticut, Connecticut to Mississippi, Mississippi to Virginia, and Virginia to Louisiana. 

Got married, then divorced

Got married, became an RN, moved from Virginia to Florida, Florida to Colorado, Colorado to Nevada, Nevada to Montana, had a baby, left Montana for Alaska, got divorced

Moved from Alaska to New Mexico, New Mexico to Florida, got married, moved from Florida to Virginia, and finally got back to New Mexico.

Never moving again

10.  A place you have never visited

Japan.  I would love to go some day

11.  How important is fame?

I’d rather be rich than famous.  Since neither is likely to happen, I’ll go with being happy. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

What is your philosophy?

Yeah, I know, I'm behind on the April Challenge.  I'll get back to it. 

I was just watching one of my favorite shows ever, Chopped, on Food Network.  One of the chefs commented something like "yeah, that goes back to my philosophy, blah, blah, blah"

I immediately thought to myself....what is MY philosophy?

So, in a couple of seconds, here's what came to mind...


And that's today's post.


Sunday, April 7, 2019

April Challenge--Day 7

Prompts, get your prompts here!

7.  How are you feeling today?  It's been an up and down day.  It was a good morning, had a horrid anxiety attack after I woke up from a nap, and the afternoon was nice.  We planted our annual container gardens... basil, oregano, cilantro, and purple bell pepper in one, two containers with tomatoes, and the last container has a habanero, jalapeno, thai chile, and green chile.  It improved my mood quite a bit!

Sunday Stealing--Love Me Some Surveys

1. If you could build a second house anywhere, where would it be?  Europe or England.  A cottage in the south of France perhaps, or in the Cotswolds, or maybe Spain.  I’ve never been, except through books and movies, but I’d sure like to go.

2. What are your favorite articles of clothing?  Anything soft and comfortable.  I have a pair of old pajama bottoms that are soooo soft, and a particular t-shirt that’s the same way.  They are my favorite lounging around the house clothes.

3. The last CD you bought or downloaded?  Appalachian Road Show, by Barry Abernathy and Darrell Webb.  I love bluegrass, traditional Americana, folk, blues.  This is a nice example.  Can you guess who’s narrating the little introduction at the beginning of this song??

4. What time do you generally wake up in the morning?  Between 4 and 430am.  I’ve always been an early bird.  We have flex time at work, and I requested to work 6-230.  I miss all the traffic, and get out of work with time enough to go to an appointment.

5. What is your favorite kitchen appliance?  Our vacuum sealer.  We have saved SO.MUCH.MONEY buying meat on sale, vacuum sealing it, and tossing it in our freezer (we have a separate freezer).  Hubs also likes to make big batches of chili, soup, marinara and the like, vacuum seal them, in the freezer.  When we don’t feel like cooking, it’s awful nice just to take dinner out of the freezer and heat it up.

6. If you could play an instrument, what would it be?  Cello

7. What is your Favorite color?  Purple

8. Do you believe in the afterlife?  Before my father died, I would have said no.  These days, I’m open to the idea.  I wouldn’t go so far as heaven or hell, but I like to think that his consciousness is out there somewhere.

9. Your Favorite children’s book?  Harry the Dirty Dog, by Gene Zion, originally published in 1956.  I loved this book, and wish I still had my childhood copy.  I carried it around for the longest time, but it got lost in one of the moves along the way.

10. Can you juggle?  Nope

11. What’s your favorite day of the week?  Saturday

12. Which do you prefer, sushi or hamburger?  I love sushi, but it can’t beat a LagunaBurger.  Best green chile cheeseburger out there.  It’s bizarre little joint in a gas station on Laguna Pueblo.  The burgers are enormous—Joe and I share one.

Image Credit
13. What is your favorite flower?  Iris.  My cousin grows all these flashy varieties, I seeing pictures of them in the spring.

14. What is your favorite meal?  Green chile stew, made by my husband.  It’s a common thing here, made with either pork or ground beef (we use ground beef), potatoes, stock, onion, and of course, green chile.  It’s the chicken soup of New Mexico, and will cure the common cold, lol.

15. Describe your ideal weather?  Fall in New Mexico.  Blue skies, crisp air, cold nights, no humidity.  Love it.  NEVER want to live in a humid, rainy place again in my life!

16. What is your favorite Ice Cream?  I don’t care for sweets, especially ice cream.  The sugar makes me ill.

17. What is your favorite breakfast?  We have local place we go for brunch, HotTamales.  I always get the same thing—one carne adovada stuffed sopaipilla, 2 eggs over easy on top, extra garnish.  To translate, carne adovada is a New Mexican dish of pork shoulder braised in red chile.  It’s stuffed inside a sopaipilla, which is dough that is fried and puffs up, leaving a pocket for all that chile goodness.

Image Credit

18. Where did you meet your spouse or significant other?  Online.  Not via a dating service—we were participating in the same forum.

Bonus: something you’d like to do that you’ve never done before?  Go on a river cruise on the Rhine.  It’s my dream trip, and I’m hoping my mother and I can do it someday.

Image Credit

Saturday, April 6, 2019

April Challenge--Day 6

Find the prompts here

6.  One thing you need to start doing.  Now that that spring has sprung, I need to spend more time outside.


We went to look at dogs the week after our beloved Ginger crossed the rainbow bridge, and I just couldn't.  In fact, Hubs and I sat on a bench outside the adoption place and we both had a major meltdown, ugly crying and all.

So we packed in the adoption idea for that day.

The next week, we decided to give it another try.  The house was so empty without a dog in it.  Off to Watermelon Mountain Ranch we go.  It's the largest no-kill shelter in New Mexico, saving dogs from all over the state, and from other states and disasters, like Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Katrina.  It's not far from our house.  All the dogs we looked at weren't a good fit...too large, or too pit bull or aggressive with cats.  The volunteer at the shelter told us about a dog that was currently in foster care with several cats that might be the one. 

We went to their next adoption event at a local Petsmart, and got to meet her, and her foster mom.  What a sweet dog.  I knew we were going to be her furever home as soon as I met her.  We took her home, and she's fit right in.  She loves to cuddle, thinks she's a lap dog, loves running at the dog park, and has good manners (thanks to the foster mom).

She is an Australian stumpy tail cattle dog (also known as Heeler) mix.  Yep, that's a thing.  She's naturally bob-tailed.  Somewhere along the way she had one of her toes amputated.  Tail-less and toe-less, lol. 

Meet the newest member of our family....Maddie!

Friday, April 5, 2019

April Challenge--Day 5

Go here for the prompts
5.  One thing you need to stop doing.  Reaching out to someone who's really not interested in engaging with me, except on the most superficial level, and who never reaches out to me.  It's like punching yourself over and over in the face and expecting to not have a black eye.  It's stupid.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

April Challenge--Days 3 and 4

Click here for the prompts

3.  What are you most grateful for?   Two things, equally.  My profession as an RN, which has allowed me to make an excellent wage, take care of people, and live and work pretty much any where I want.  Going to nursing school was literally one of the best decisions I've ever made.  Second, my husband.  He's the other best decision I've ever made.  

4.  The most important qualities in a friend?   Laughing at my funny stories.  Being willing to put up with my need to drop off the planet every now and then.  Being able to just start the relationship where we left off after I've been off the grid for a couple of weeks or a month, or whatever. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

April Challenge--Day 2

Click here for the prompts
Thanks to Kwizgiver for the lovely challenge!

2.  What place do you consider your home?  

Depends on your definition, really.  If "home" is the place where you live, well then, I live in Rio Rancho, New Mexico.  This is my second time living in New Mexico.  I lived in Santa Fe from 2000 to 2003, and literally from the first, I knew that New Mexico was the place where I wanted to spend the rest of my life.  But, life is full of surprises, and I ended up spending almost 10 years in Florida, and a year of hell in Virginia before I managed to get back here in 2012.  Home is here.

On the other hand, if you think "home" is the place where you grew up, then my parent's house is my home, wherever they happen to be living at the time.  My Dad was a nuclear engineer, and we moved around a lot.  We spent a lot of my childhood on and off in Mississippi, so that's where I grew up.  But, about 15 years ago, my parents moved to Aiken, SC.  So, going to Aiken is "going home".

Monday, April 1, 2019

April Challenge--Day 1

Thanks, Kwizgiver!  Something to distract me.  Here you go, if you want to play along!

1.  Your biggest dream?

I would like to finally, finally, finally for the love of God, be at peace with my regrets.

Click here for the prompts