Sunday, August 28, 2011

Are you ready for some football?

Well, it's official! Fantasy football is here for 2011! I was at my first draft of the year tonight--for the Deli league. Of course, I did NOT get most of the players I was coveting. But then, last year, I wasn't particularly happy about my team either, and I won the title for the second year in a row. Do you think I can go for three? Odds are not in my favor, but I will have fun trying! And, crazy me, I have two more drafts to do for other leagues. Gary is trying to talk me into a fourth league. I am hoping he fuhgeddsaboudit! KWIM?

Last night we attended the Cardinals' first home game, albeit a preseason one. It was a really HOT walk from the parking lot to the stadium. I needed a shower after we got to our seats, which are in the upper, upper deck. :^) But we can see the whole field really well, and our seats are on the 35-yard line, so I am happy with the location. The game was fun to watch--saw some really exciting plays on both sides of the ball. And the walk back to the car was not as traumatic--it was dark, the air and pavement had cooled off, and a little breeze was blowing. All in all, a nice evening to share with Gary.

We had two eating adventures this weekend. We went to Tien Wong Hot Pot in Chandler on Friday night. Gary picked it out because it was in the Phoenix Magazine's 23 Best New Restaurants list. I wasn't particularly excited about it--after all, it is the Chinese version of fondue. And, for some reason, that didn't sound great in 100+ degree heat. Was I ever wrong, wrong, wrong. Yes, there is a first time for everything. Anyway, the food was incredibly delicious! We started with the spicy lemongrass broth, which they brought to the hot plate on our table. After it heated to boiling (in a flash!), we cooked lobster, clams, pork dumplings, pea tips, baby bok choy, oyster mushrooms, enoki mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, and somen noodles in it. There were also two dipping sauces to use if we wanted. OMG. Soooo good! If you live in the area, do stop by and try this little place; it's well worth the visit! But, be aware that you can get drips and drabs on your clothing. Pack a bib!

The other eating adventure was last night before the football game. Gary decided we should try the Arrogant Butcher in downtown Phoenix at CityScape, which is also listed as one of the 23 best new restaurants. Score! We had several appetizers: crescenza cheese with razz cherry marmalade and crusty bread, prosciutto and hot coppa served with house-made mustard and crusty bread, grilled asparagus, roasted peppers, and marinated olives. Oh. so. good. And light. We ended with a salted caramel pudding. Which Gary said he would taste. And then he ate over half of it, because it just melted in your mouth. Yum! If you live anywhere in the Valley of the Sun, take a trip downtown and try this unique place! I think you will love it.

I will mention two other things. I did not consume any alcohol with my meals this weekend. After my wine overload at the wine dinner on Wednesday, I just was not in the mood. Gee, I wonder why! And, secondly, I was able to get into my new crop pants for the game Saturday night! Yay! I think I will actually be OK on the upcoming trip wearing my new wardrobe. Hallelujah! I don't have to explain to Gary why I spent his hard-earned money on clothing I can't seem to get into! And, btw, I do feel better as a smaller size. I no longer get out of breath when I wipe down the shower! VBG!

OK, that's it for the update. Here's hoping everyone everywhere is safe and having a wonderful week!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Excessive much?

This has been the week of excess. Not just in our heat wave, (which seems more like a heat tsunami, if there was such a thing), but in food and drink. For me at least. It has also been the week of my favorite local restaurant, the Deli. Which I think is actually "the deli", but that just doesn't look right in a sentence, does it?

Anyway, I am still trying to get fit for our upcoming trip to Maui. Yeah, good luck with that. So on Monday, my friend Ellie asked me if I would like to attend the Trilogy Scrapbooking Club on Wednesday--our super SU rep, Diana Gibbs, would be there doing a couple of make-and-takes. And then we would go to lunch at the Deli, (the deli). Well, she didn't have to ask me twice, now did she. So, after the club fun, we trekked out to Queen Creek, (which is only a couple of miles away), to have another delicious lunch at our "hangout". For me it was the 1/2 club sandwich and the soup-of-the-week, tomato bisque. Oh, yum! I restrained myself from having dessert, since I had eaten a cookie at the club meeting. Yes, I know, Baaaaad Penny.

Then it was back to the Deli (the deli), for the monthly wine dinner that same night, this time with my infamous spouse, Gary. And our lovely waitress gave us generous pours for each of the three scrumptious courses. The pours were so generous, in fact, that I was quite inebriated when I left. Which I really don't care to be. So, next time I will be sensible and ask for smaller wine portions. Silly me. OMG, I had a serious hangover yesterday! Anyway, the first course was shrimp skewers served with crunchy apples and an Italian dipping sauce. Heaven. On a tray. This was followed by a lovely spinach salad with a warm prosciutto dressing. In a bowl. Then the main course was a wonderful filet mignon in a Cabernet wine butter sauce with sugar snap peas and mashed potatoes. On a plate. The only disappointment was the dessert. Don't get me wrong: it was great. as usual, but not what I had expected. We shared their superb carrot cake. Also on a plate. But I had seen the evening's special dessert--a beautiful berry custard--when I was in earlier for lunch. And they ran out of it before we could order. Dang it. I was all set for Nicole's excellent custard and someone slammed on the brakes. Sigh....

OK, so yesterday I was not feeling good. I did manage to get some laundry done, my exercising in, and even worked on today's card. But then the crash came, and I toddled off to bed for a long afternoon nap. Yeah, the old grey mare just ain't what she used to be. Can't handle three glasses of wine at one meal. No sirree, Bub.

So today I met my darling daughter, Angela, for lunch. Guess where? Yup, see how smart you are? The Deli (the deli) again! That's three, count 'em, three times this week. That seems to be a bit excessive, huh? Except that the food is so good, and I had different things to eat each time. Today it was a yummy crab meat sandwich, with the tomato bisque soup. (Well, the soup was so good on Wednesday, I just had to have it again today). Then we followed that with one of the Deli's (the deli's) chocolate chunk cookies. These cookies do not have just a few chocolate chips in them; no way, they are loaded with chocolate chips. More chips than cookie dough. So they are chocolate chunks, and oh soooo good! And thank you, again, for lunch, Darling Daughter. And, btw, your eyebrows are gorgeous! :^)

OK, so I didn't need the cookie. I know. Don't rub it in. I have no will power when it comes to desserts. Perhaps I should just eat them and skip the meals altogether. No? Ah, you're probably right. Anyway, I am now stuffed, again, and ready to show you my card for the week. I am entering this into two challenges:

CMC Copic Challenge #25, Winged Things:

Copic Creations Challenge #56, Blue-Greens:

My recipe for this card is as follows: take one Magnolia Edwin with Butterfly image, stamp it, color it with Copics, cut it out, and add it to patterned paper and butterflies. Oh, OK, I'll be a little more specific, just for you:

I used the following Copics:  E0000, E000, E00, E11, E13, E25, E31, E50, BG70, BG72, BG75, BG78, C00, C0, C7, YG0000, YG03.

I used paper from the following collections:  DCWV Linen Closet, DCWV Far East, My Mind's Eye Honey Cake, Kaisercraft Chapter 1, and Magnolia Butterfly Dreams. Die-cuts were done with Nestabilities Circles, Magnolia Doohickey Fence and Vintage Tag, and Sweet Stamps Butterfly dies. I added some miscellaneous buttons and Tim Holtz trinkets. That's it.

And, please, everyone everywhere, be sure to have a great weekend!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Making up for lost time

I am back again--so soon? Yup! I am making up for the time I lost while I was in my book-reading frenzy. I do that at least once a year. I dive into books and don't come up for air until my appetite is satiated. And I am now back into crafting mode.

So......I have a new card today. I suddenly realized there is a little boy we know with a birthday September 4. I was mulling over, (yes, I did use that word), what image I should color, when I remembered that I already colored one for a CMC class. Eureka! How to make a quick card, huh? Well, not so much. It took me hours to figure out that I needed to cut out the colored image, and even more hours to create a card with it. Don't ask. I can't explain why.

Anyway, while Gary did practice draft after practice draft for fantasy football yesterday, I was working on Miles' card. Yes, it appears we lead separate lives right now. Not to worry--this happens every year at this time. I could be on fire, choking to death, or running around naked (now that's an unpleasant thought), and he would not notice. He is too wrapped up in practicing a fantasy football draft than he is in life itself. And I am now OK with that since I have my own room I can go play in.

Back to the card: I decided I could enter it into a couple of card challenges while I was at it. So I am submitting it to:

Basic Grey: 

And, if there is anyone out there reading this who can explain how I use the link so that the whole web address doesn't show, please explain it to me. Of course, you may need to repeat yourself a time or two or ten, since I am not the most computer-savvy person in the world. And I'm old. 

I used the Magnolia Edwin with bike image that I had previously colored in a monochromatic black-and-white. Of course, I colored it with Copics, but I cannot remember the exact ones. I used the C family, probably C00 through C9. I won't swear to that, mind you, because I cannot recall exactly. Remember, I'm old.

I used Basic Grey Basic White patterned paper and SU card stock. My die cuts were done with Spellbinders Labels 8, 20, and Grand ovals, along with a Magnolia Doohickey fence. The Label 8 die cut was embossed with a Cuttlebug Clockworks folder. I added SU ribbon, and Tim Holtz trinkets. Isn't it a wonder that I showed a little restraint with the embellishments? Yeah, I thought so, too.

There are a couple more challenges I want to enter this month, so I hope to show you another card in two or three days. Shocking, huh? And here's wishing everyone everywhere a most magnificent day!

Sunday, August 21, 2011


I ate too much again tonight. I seem to do that every time we go out to eat dinner. That would be OK if we went out once a month. But we go at least twice a week, maybe more often. Just how did I think I was going to fit into those new crop pants for our trip to Hawaii when I eat like a piggy? I mean, they do fit better than they did when I got them. BUT, they do not fit as well as they should. Face it, Penny, they are still too tight. Ugh.

Now if I could exercise the way I should, it would go a long way toward having a tighter derriere and gut. I would say 6-pack abs, but that might make me snort water out of my nose. No, the description of my abdomen is definitely "gut". It is smaller than it was a few months ago, and for that I am grateful. But it needs to be smaller yet. And I cannot even mention my rear. Please, the thought of how wide it is right now is truly painful. And those lovely dimples. If they were on the right cheeks they would be darling. But they aren't, and they aren't. And I am running out of time. Any suggestions, other than a starvation diet? (Which I could never follow anyway. I am much too fond of food).

I hurt my knee a few weeks back, when I leaned on it wrong to get into my chaise. I heard something pop and felt a sharp pain at the same time. Since then I have had trouble doing any aerobic exercises, as the front and back of my knee are really sore. So is the back of my calf. I refuse to go to the doctor, don't even think about telling me to. If I need a surgical repair, it has to wait until after our trip. I am not missing out on this trip to Hawaii like we did with last year's trip due to Gary's broken foot. So there! Anyway, that's my reason for not being able to do my exercise program anymore, and I'm sticking to it!

I actually still exercise every other day. I do my "gut" exercises and lift weights. But I am not able to do the aerobics that I was doing; hence I am not losing the weight I had thought I could when I bought those damn darn crop pants. Isn't it wonderful when you can rationalize your failures? I have perfected that over the years.

So we had a wonderful meal at the Deli last night: orange roughy with asparagus and an orzo salad. Just YUM! And Nicole made a delicious custard, which I just had to try. Unfortunately, Gary didn't help me finish it. I did that all by myself. I'm good that way. Just ask my gut. Or my butt. Either one will be happy to acknowledge my proficiency at finishing desserts. My favorite part of the meal. And I blame my father for that! It was his fault that I grew up loving sweets. Wasn't it? See, I am still rationalizing. Or hadn't you noticed?

To add insult to injury, (and what does that mean in this context?), we went out to dinner again tonight. We ate at the Fairmont Princess La Hacienda. And, just like last night, I ate more than I needed to. More than I should have. Oh, woe is me. The food was very good. We had guacamole, chips, and shrimp ceviche to start. Then I had wonderful crab enchiladas with yummy black beans and rice. And, oh yeah, here comes the dessert! Cinnamon churros with three perfectly scrumptious and fat-laden dipping sauces. The only good thing is that Gary shared the dessert this time. Oh, I forgot to mention the two Margaritas I had--no calories there, right? You know, some people actually don't figure in the calories from alcohol. But they are there, believe me. And they are empty calories.

So, anyway, I need to find a  big-ass rope and flagellate myself. Perhaps if I did that each time I overeat, I could discourage myself from overeating. Or, that might just give me another reason to bathe in the comfort of food, specifically sweet food. Ay-yi-yi-yi.

Well, if anyone has any great ideas how I can get into those crop pants by the time we go to Hawaii, let me know. ASAP. SOS. Please? I am really running out of time.

In the meantime, I wish everyone everywhere a more sensible food plan. And a great Sunday.

Friday, August 19, 2011


Yes, I was reminded today by my sister, Merrilyn, that I had not blogged for over a week. I had to finish a behemoth book about WWI (loaned to me by that selfsame sister), and get started on my card for the CMC Bookendz book club. Plus I had nothing funny to say. Well, that's not entirely true, but some funny things just cannot be shared. With anybody. And that's all I am going to say about that! So there.

I have also been busy finding restaurants on Maui for our upcoming trip. You know, 'cause I'm a foodie. Wait, can you be a foodie without eating escargot or organ meat? If not, then I guess I am not a foodie. I'm just a person who loves good food and really loves to go out to eat it! So I should be in 7th heaven in Hawaii, because there are some marvelous-sounding places to go to dine. So many, in fact, that I will have to narrow down the list. Hmmm, such a problem to have, huh?

Gary was gone to San Jose again last week. And came home Friday with back and stomach pain, located where kidney stones would be found. I found this odd, since my SU rep, Diana, was hospitalized at the same time for a kidney stone that she had to have blasted. As in lithotripsy. Gary gutted it out over the weekend and went to his urologist on Monday. The lab there found blood in his urine. Gary's urine, not the urologist's. Just want to make that clear. Anyway, that is indicative of an existing, or recently passed, kidney stone. So they did an x-ray and couldn't see any stones. Which probably means that he had already passed it. We can only hope. I really think that Gary should quit traveling, as he keeps having these health "issues" while he is away. Sigh.

Remember when I spoke about all the eye problems happening in my family? No? Well, I never. Ever. Oh, shoot, now I forgot what I was going to tell you. Waiting. For it to come back into my consciousness. Still waiting....

Oh, yeah, eyes. So Gary went to the eye doctor yesterday about his "floaters" in his left eye, which he got when he was in Iowa last month. Floaters. Yeah, that's one of those funny words in our family. Gary always called things better left unmentioned "floaters". Oh, sorry. I digress. TMI. Anyway, the doctor told him that the floaters were not serious, and nothing to worry about right now. BUT. Drum roll, please. But, he thinks that Gary might have dementia. Oh, sorry again. Not dementia, but glaucoma. Seriously? Yup, seriously. Oh crap. (I might just as well have said 'oh floaters'). Anyway, Gary has to go back to the eye doctor next month for an hour-long exam. To see if he really has dementia glaucoma. If so, it can pretty easily be treated by eye drops. For the most part. Of course, if that doesn't work (and, with Gary, who the hell heck knows), there is always a laser surgery that can be performed. At least this is not the blindness sentence that it once was, thank heavens!

Gary called me to give me this info, and then he said--and I quote--"Waaaaaaa, make them stop!" Guess he is tired of having things happen to him, too. And we both agreed that getting older sucks. However, the alternative isn't all that great. I prefer to stay on this side of the dirt for now, don't you?

Now to my card. I am uploading it to the CMC Bookendz website. It was to be based upon the book selection Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See, (which, btw, was a really good book). I used the Magnolia stamp, Chinese Tilda, for my card subject. I chose colors for her based upon the DCWV Far East paper collection and Stampin' Up cs. I colored her with Copics (what else?) in the following colors:

W00, W0, C3, C5, C7, C9, E0000, E000, E00, E11, E13, E70, E71, E74, E79, V0000, V000, V01, V91, V93, and V95. I also used an Atyou Spica clear pen and a white Uni-ball pen.

I used Spellbinders Grand Labels 4, Labels 4, Parisian Accents, and leaf dies. The other die used is from Marianne Designs. My flowers are from Prima and Wild Orchid Crafts. The half pearls are Stampin' Up. Whew! I think that was enough for one card, don't you? :^)

I will leave you with a wish for everyone everywhere to have a wonderful weekend! 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

He's Awake Now

Gary finally knows about my glasses. Not that he noticed by himself. No way. He suddenly remembered that he needed to submit the bill for my lenses to our flex account to get reimbursed. So he called Aztec Optical to ask for the bill. Then he called me and said, "When did you get your new glasses?" After laughing my butt off (oh, I only wish), I told him I had gotten them a week ago. Color him embarrassed. In fact, that's what he told me when he got home and looked at me. That he didn't want to say anything because he was really embarrassed. As well he should be, right?

I added insult to injury when I told him that I had bought something for the house two weeks ago, and he still hadn't noticed. So he sat on the sectional and looked around the room. Bless his heart, he did find the new baskets. About time, don't you think? Oh me, oh my. I will say he got the most sheepish expression on his face I have ever seen. :^) Oh, and when I mentioned that my sis, Merrilyn, said he owed me a big present, he just said, "Well, I'm taking you to Hawaii." Yeah, OK, that is a pretty big gift. And I do appreciate it a LOT. However, I will have this to hold over him for a quite awhile, methinks.

We had the granddaughters, Kelsey and Brynn, for the weekend. To give their parents a break, which I think all parents deserve from time to time. Gary was the ultimate grandpa. He took them to the pool twice a day, rented movies for them to watch, and played many games with them. I am not quite the game lover that he is, so didn't participate in all of the games, but did try a few. And one game, in particular, made me feel utterly stupid. It is based on the Harry Potter movies, which I haven't seen. Kelsey thought I would be good at the game since I had read all the books. Ah. Not. I didn't answer even one question right. It will be a cold day in hell before I try that one again. Gee, do I sound bitter?

So, something I ate really cleaned me out yesterday. That, or I had a 24-hour bug. I wasn't feeling well for a couple of days, but it felt more like a cold coming on than anything else. All I can say is--thank heavens for Imodium A/D! I feel like a new person today. My stomach did shrink, and I looked really thin sideways last night. But then I ate a couple of meals and I am back to my rounded look once more. Crap. No that was yesterday. Sorry. TMI.

I am going to get back to being creative any day now. I miss it a lot. I finished the Ice and Fire series and then read the Snow Flower book for the CMC book club. Now I need to make my Asian-themed card, and I will be ready to rock and roll on other cards. Hopefully for challenges. We shall see. But I will get a start on this tomorrow. For sure. No, really. I mean it.

Wishing everyone everywhere a happy Thursday! Btw, are your significant others more observant than mine? :^)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Gary, WAKE UP!

Okey dokey. I have discovered that Gary is ridiculously oblivious. I mean, I cannot even believe how little he notices.

Case in point: last week I bought two new baskets for the open shelf above our pantry. We did have two woven wicker baskets on that shelf, and I felt they didn't look "modern" enough for our room. So I have been on the lookout for new ones. I just so happened to find some at Joann's on Thursday that are PERFECT! I just love them--they are woven turquoise fabric in a very modern style. The color matches the turquoise Fiesta vase I have on the counter across from the pantry. I put them up on Thursday and waited to see if Gary would notice. I was sure he would as they sit just above his eye level. Yeah, well, today is Tuesday, and he still has not spotted them.

Second case in point: yesterday I got the call that my new glasses were in. And it wasn't just any message. When I answered the phone, I was asked if I was "Giggles Mull." Guess my hysteria during my frame selection was remembered! Anyway, I was tickled to get the frames so soon, as I didn't expect them for another two weeks. After I got back home, Gary called me to ask me to meet him at Brio for dinner, and I did not mention my new glasses. I thought he would notice them as soon as he saw me. Not. After we were seated I kept looking at him, thinking he would be sure to notice the glasses if he looked at me again. Nope. And here's the kicker:  while he was looking at me, he actually asked me when my new glasses were due to come in. I could NOT believe it! I managed to keep a straight face as I mumbled something about them being due in a couple of weeks. I wonder how long it is going to take him to notice them. I will see. Hopefully, not as long as it is taking him to notice the new baskets!

I must admit I laughed several times last night about this. In front of him. But he never asked me what I was laughing about. That's how much attention he is paying to me these days. I think he is so caught up in work, the Diamondbacks, the Cardinals, and Fantasy Football that his mind doesn't have time for anything or anyone else. OMG.

Anyway, I will be making another card soon--after I finish my last book of the Ice and Fire series. I must get done with that so I can read the first selection of the CMC Bookendz. Here's wishing everyone everywhere a great rest of the week. (And may your significant others be more observant than mine). LOL!