Monday, June 30, 2008

What's going on

Sitting here sipping my Bushmills and water, thinking about what I need to accomplish this week. It's going to be a bit hectic here. But that's OK. Actually that's quite good. Because at the end of the week, when a few of my tasks have been checked off the to-do list, Sir and Lady C will be here!

We're going to be spending the holiday weekend at S's lake cottage. One of the local party stores pays for a wonderful fireworks display and this year, the show is on the 5th. When we were in Pittsburgh in May, we bought a bunch of stuff to decorate the pontoon as a floating tiki hut. HOWEVER, since this is the year of the BIRDS, there is a BIRDS NEST under the CANOPY of the boat. So we'll probably decorate it but we won't be able to take it out for a spin.

Upon reflection, this probably isn't a bad thing.

Here are a couple of pictures of the birds. They were taken with my cell phone because it's the only camera that can get between the nest and the canopy top. So they're kinda crappy. But whatever.

I think these birds lined their nest with swan feathers. (At our last count, there were two breeding pairs of swans on the lake.)

So. We'll have the Pittsburgh Cs and a small gathering of pals for the fireworks. Yee haw.

I get my hair cut again tomorrow. It's been two months since I got it styled. And it's been a WONDERFUL two months of quick showers and quick blow-drys. Once I conquered the hair wing, it was smooth sailing. I'm thinking I might have her take a little bit more off the back this time.

An aside: Did I mention that last year I had a ton of lenght cut off my hair when S was out of town? And that when he got back into town, he didn't say a DAMN word about my new short 'do? And did I mention that I took that to mean he hated my new short hair cut? Because FOR A YEAR he never said a word about it? I'm not about to ask if he liked it if he can't even say, "hey, you cut your hair." So this last time I got it cut I ran it past him first. "S, I'm gonna get my hair cut and styled. It'll be short. Just so you know." Luckily, he liked it. When I called him on the whole not mentioning the cut a year ago, he CLAIMED HE DIDN'T NOTICE. Ha. Just like a man. (Are they REALLY that clueless sometimes?)


Haircut, then pick up a dog I'm dog sitting, then a walk with my aunt tomorrow evening. Wednesday will be spent at S's helping him get ready for the Cs to arrive. We're going to Urban Camp Thursday evening before heading off to the cottage on Friday.

Happy 4th of July!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


DB* and I went for a ride on the tandem bike last night. I did fairly well. My heart did not explode like DB thought it would. You see, I'm not nearly as athletic as he is. Ha. Big surprise. I think the running has helped a bit with the heart-not-exploding even though I've not been nearly as faithful to running as I should be. But I want to be. No, I need to be. Because when I'm active, I feel better. Anyway, we rode downtown Ann Arbor to Top of the Park (so named because it used to be held on top of the parking structure) and had some delicious food, good beer, and listened to good music. We were going to stay and watch Vertigo but it didn't start until 10 and with no lights on the bike, I was worried about getting home safely. So we left when it was still light out. The rides there and back were so much FUN, people. I can't wait to ride on it again. They say that if you ever want to find out how you'll get along with someone, paint a small room with them. I'd like to add, "ride a tandem bicycle" with them. Talk about faith and trust - the person in the back (me, in this case) has NO control over steering, braking, shifting, and usually can't see over the person in front. But, doggone it, I had the bell! And I rang it to suit my fancy. Which was often. And usually for no reason other than it makes me feel young to do it.


I'm going to Mackinac Island in July. I've ordered a copy of Knitting for Dummies from the library so I can take it with me. My plan is to sit in an Adirondack on the Mission Point lawn, watch the boats finish the race (in which DB is participating), and read about knitting. Hopefully by then I'll have picked up some yarn and needles so I can practice a bit, too. Talk about relaxation. Book(s), cool breezes off the Straits, warm sunshine, and drunken sailors. Who could ask for more?

This will be my third summer in a row for going to Mackinac. Probably the last, too, for the purpose of getting DB off the boat as he may not be doing the race any more. I am hoping that we'll still continue to go up once a year though because, people, it's fantastic there. No cars, barely any cell phone reception, and usually gorgeous weather. It truly is one of my favorite places to be.


In other news, I'm reading a bit of fluff by Meg Cabot called Queen of Babble (in Googling that title, I discovered it's the first of a series! yay!). It's light, it's fun, it's a super fast read.

And Fearless Fourteen came out this month! Woo!

*And can I just say that I need to stop calling my guy "DB" here at Defective Typewriter. Because I think of him that way in my head now. That has to stop. God forbid I ever call him that to his face because, confession time: he doesn't know about this blog. He knows I read blogs because I talk about them all the time - I've even shared some of your posts with him. But, for now, this blog is mine and mine alone (well, yours too, if you read it). It's not that I'm exactly hiding it from him, but I've surely not volunteered the information. And he's not asked. Maybe he just assumes that I've got a blog and doesn't want to know what I write about. He wouldn't find this by searching for my name...obviously Tuli isn't my real name. But he might find it if he were to search for the old Liberty. So, if you hear me talk about an "S", that's DB. I'm going to try to get into the habit of using his initial here.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


I want to learn how to knit.

Aside from taking a class, what are good resources for learning?

Friday, June 20, 2008

How does my garden grow?

Last Friday, Jane wrote about Mary, Mary and how her garden grows.

That post got me thinking about all the flowers I have in my yard this year. I thought today, being the first day of summer and all, would be a great time to show 'em.

First up, gifts from DB's mom. I love these little urns. I have one on either side of my front step and they look fantastic.

She gave me four tomato plants. If you look closely, you can see the wee tiniest tomato ever:

(See it there? Tucked in under that wilted bud.)

I planted clematis vines along my fence row this year because the chains are starting to rust (not on this particular section, funnily enough) and I don't want to replace fencing. Nor do I want to paint it.

I have the city's smallest lavender bushes. But I love them and have to FIGHT THE URGE to pull the leaves off, mash them up, and rub them all over my body stuff them in my pillow case. Otherwise, I wouldn't have any lavender bushes left at all.

Last summer I planted a butterfly garden. Didn't get much last year. But this year, I'm getting some of these:

Not sure why this one looks so blue. Didn't set anything on my camera differently than in the picture above:

And finally, the robin's asparagus fern is much improved. Heather suggested moth balls to keep other birds away but I went the wind-chimes route instead. It's working so far.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

APHC and Superhero me

Saturday evening DB and I had a date. We went to Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor and watched a live broadcast of A Prairie Home Companion. (If you've ever seen the movie, Garrison Keillor really does wear red shoes during the broadcast - I made sure to notice.)

The show was terrific (you can listen to it here). Lots of references to Ann Arbor and Michigan. The band is fantastic and Fred Newman, the sound effects guy, is amazing. He moves so FAST. There was a harmonica player who knocked our socks off. The Milroys, a duo from Ferndale, MI, sang a few songs - they were good. Suzy Bogguss has a fantastic voice - so clear and lovely. My favorite bit was when she sang her hit song from 1991, "Someday Soon". DB just rolled his eyes when I started to sing along. Because people, Suzy Bogguss I ain't. I can not sing in that key to save my life.

We had a wonderful time and the 2.5 hours we were there whipped by in a flash.

My only disappointment of the show: they didn't do a Catchup Advisory Board sketch. But they did read some Jim Harrison poetry that was quite enjoyable. So I guess I'll forgive them.

"And that's the news from Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average."
~Garrison Keillor.


Something fun:

If I were a dude, I'd be:

Find out Which Marvel Superhero Are You at!

Stolen from MissNightOwl.

Monday, June 16, 2008

CSA, Monday update of Friday's to-do list

So here is the first weeks take from CSA: green onions, radishes, broccoli, bok choy, arugula, leafy lettuce, spinach, and a dozen yummy brown eggs.

Not bad for this early in the season in Michigan.

As for my Friday to-do list I got all of it done except mowing the front yard - which will happen tonight. Productive weekend, yo.

Anyone know how in the heck one fixes bok choy? Recipes appreciated.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Friday update

Tomorrow, we're going to see A Prairie Home Companion in Ann Arbor.

But before that fun event, I have to:
  • mow my half-acre back yard (which I HATE to do, even though I have a riding mower)
  • push mow the front yard and margin (which I DO NOT hate doing)
  • pray it doesn't rain until AFTER I get the lawn mowed.
  • laundry
  • clean house
  • pack for tomorrow evening at DBs (hopefully not forgetting the tickets to tomorrow's event and my dad's Father's Day card).
  • sleep
  • go to DBs house early enough to drop off the dogs, then
  • hit the farmer's market to pick up my first CSA box.
  • Make sure my skirt is wrinkle-free and iron if need be.
  • shop for a Father's Day gift
  • read
  • enjoy the weather
  • be at DBs house to 'take delivery' of the dog I'm dog-sitting next week.
  • get dressed for APHC
  • Leave for APHC about 5 because I want to get there early and see everything there is to see.
Sunday, blessed Sunday!, will be a day of relaxation. I think we're going to have lunch out somewhere for Father's Day, then it's back to my house in Ypsi to finish cleaning (because I know damn well I won't get it done tonight).


Random photo:

Me letting go of the rope swing on Havasu Creek. Taken in Havasu Canyon early September 2007. The water was cold, yet so refreshing.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Owls Are Not What They Seem* when one is backyard camping

Camped out in DB's driveway last night. In the vintage, retro, OLD Apache camper.

Had so much fun and slept so well, we're doing it again tonight.

*The Giant, Twin Peaks (Season 2, Episode 1)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


LOVELURVELOVE these free desktop wallpapers:

My current fave:

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A Robin Story

Since I've not mentioned the robin family in awhile, let me catch you up:

Thursday, May 8, 2008: I noticed a robin had built a nest in my pathetic-looking asparagus fern.

Tuesday, May 13: egg(s) present. Front porch use limited to coming-and-going.

Friday, May 16: more eggs and mama present constantly. I begin to, daily, rinse and fill the birdbath and keep seed in the feeder.

People, a pictorial of robin-rearing:

May 26: nekkid babies! There are three of them in there:

May 29: Momma (or Poppa - I don't know which is which) givin' the babies some air:

May 30: nekkid babies, part 2 (so Jurassic looking):

June 1: I'm amazed that this is just two days later!

June 1: momma starts sitting higher in the nest:

June 4: feedings are done on high-alert:

June 4: no wonder - those babies are huge!

June 8: this little fellow is the last to leave the nest. He hopped about the fern for a couple of hours. He made is escape when I wasn't at the window with my camera ready. I'm not sure when his nest-mates left, they were gone this morning, though:

June 8: empty nest:

For those of you keeping score at home, that was ONE MONTH from nest-building to empty nest.


Recently, Eurolush found proof that Germans aren't always nice to those in the Badger family. I think it should be known that those of us in the Great Lakes region lurve our Badgers. We honor them by naming ships after them:

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cars & Crafts

DB and I have been dating for just over two years. There are several things he's taught me to appreciate since we've been together. The foremost being craftsmanship of days gone by -- old houses that, when you look at them really closely, reveal fantastic details that are oh-so-subtle. Another is the form of old furniture (sometimes it really is worth reupholstering). And obviously, old crappe.

But the thing I've learned to appreciate that has had the most impact on me is cars. Specifically, antique cars. Just looking at antique cars is pleasing. The curve of a fender, the line of its profile, the HUGE headlights. Think Roaring 20s, Grapes of Wrath, The Great Gatsby.

DB has an antique car. Several of them, truth be told, that he inherited from his grandpa. His pride and joy is an old pre-WWII independent grandpa restored in 1966. Do you realize the sheer number of independent auto makers in the early 1900s? Pre-DB, I had no clue.

People, the Liberty:

When we take her out, we try to dress the part. So yay, vintage shopping! Which is, by far, a HECK of a lot more fun that shopping for everyday wear. This is the first of my three (so far) car dresses. Found at a local vintage store that is no longer around. Not vintage 20s but close enough with all the little pleats and the drop waist and the general sack-like fit:

Dress #2 was found at a vintage store in Detroit. They don't have a website so you don't get a link. Again, not vintage 20s attire (60s maybe?) but it worked:

And here's where the craft portion of this post comes in. I made car dress #3. The pattern wasn't confusing but since I'm not one who regularly sews it took me forever to figure out how to attach the collar.It's more of a day dress than a flapper-wannabe. I call it my "Green dress (but not a real green dress, that's cruel)" dress.

(The blue car next to Liberty is a 1918 Mitchell. Pretty car - and it has a trunk! Also, the third car pictured on this page is unbelievable. Just gorgeous.)

DB is looking for knickers and an argyle sweater with matching socks. I've got a different pattern I'm going to try my hand at. Jeez, we're dorks. But we have fun.

DB will, one day, try his hand at a restoration. Or at least a partial one. There's something to be said about barn condition. We're thinking we'll get this Liberty (a 1922) running, make sure it's structurally sound, put some seats in it, and hit the road. Screw paint!

Of course, we'll have to get all the bird crap off it, first.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Short and not-so-sweet

Short update:

Sunday's car show was fantastic. Will post photos later.

What I thought was a powder-post beetle problem in my house is, in fact, these fuckers (pardon my language, but I'm kinda upset about this newest development). So my dilemma is this: I have a VERY OLD house (circa 1864) with a damned termite infestation. (And it's BAD. They're in the garage, too.) GAH!

Oh. And the foundation is slowly failing. GAAAAHHH!

More later when I'm not so mad I could spit nails.