Tuesday, March 31

SPT= Self Portrait Tuesday... the "8" challenge

I love this photo. We got a new DVD player and when I took the picture curling was on t.v.

When in Canada...do as the Canadians do.

Join in the Self Portrait Tuesday group HERE.
Just a few days left for the Etsy giveaway....go to the "Giveaway" tab and enter.

Sunday, March 29

Etsy Feature, Two Guitars and a Giveaway

EXTENDED A FEW MORE DAYS!!!!! Sign up to win....

Earth friendly, artsy and affordable..... Two Guitars
The artist, Scott, is one busy man. He just completed his MFA in Film Production from Boston University now living in Portland, Oregon. He makes movies.(scottballardfilms.com), makes Gocco cards, makes beer (myyearinbeer.blogspot.com), does photography (suchandsuch.etsy.com) and graphic design. Whew....

Two Guitars features art cards and prints created with a Gocco (screen-print) printer, as well as new letterpress designs! Inspiration is drawn from various obsessions and addictions - namely filmmaking, photography, music and travel.

Although it was hard to pick just one card to feature and giveaway, I chose "Hello Bike Card Set of 5. Retail price $14.00

Do you want to win these cards? Click over to Two Guitars and take a look around. For your first entry come back and share what cards you like best. Good luck, there are so many cool options. Second entry, if you are a follower or become a follower you get another entry. If you purchase anything from Two Guitars you get 3 more entries. If you share this on your blog you get another entry. One more chance...tell me the last time you sent a card to someone. That's a lot of entries...goodness.

Click here to read more about "I love being carded!" Card Swap

This giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents. The deadline for this contest is
Friday, April 3rd. I will draw the name on Saturday, April 4th.

Saturday, March 28

Going to the Sugar Shack

A true Canadian "cabane à sucre"...(Sugar Shack)

The nights grow longer, the moon is right, the wind makes it's way from the southwest...a Quebec tradition rises with the morning sun. Within a shack among the maple trees sticky hands boil the sweet water. Then one hand fills the glass jars while the other one gets ready to piles the plates and fill the bowls for a family style dinner.

We all joined as light fell behind the maple groves. We were in for a "sweet" night. The fiddler tapped his foot providing a beat for those in need, accompanied by the wooden spoons within the hands of guests. Eager feet, ambitious smiles and laughter filled the room. The smell of pea soup, baked beans,ham and potatoes wafted through the air. Like ketchup to hot dogs, maple syrup spreads over the traditional meal. Heaping stacks of crepes lay in front of us. Without effort my fork slices through, syrup trickles down my chin funny enough I fit right in. I make no effort to wipe it away knowing another one is sure to follow. Sitting back in my chair after inhaling my share of Canada's best I see the pride rising in the chest of the native men. Ancestral spirits keep the Quebecoise humming.

Bouncing out of our seats on a sugar rush we bounce outside. The silver bridal is polished, manes brushed, adorned with bells the horse drawn wagon awaits. Gliding through the woods on this crisp night my husband holds my hand. He reads my mind. I would rather be riding on the back of the horse than sitting within. He pats my leg and gives me a compassionate smiles. My heart melts a little.

One last experience before a visit to the dentist to fill my cavities. Hot syrup is poured over a patch of snow, with a wooden sticks I began to roll the amber goo....I'm not exactly sure what you call it outside of yummy. (It's called Tire sounds like tear. Not 100% sure.)

The collection of water one drip at a time, filling buckets, creating a golden bond for generations to come.

Friday, March 27

Friday Foto Finish Fiesta- Quebec City- Ice Hotel

Just a couple days left for the Two Guitars Stationary giveaway...Click here to sign up.

Hotel de Glace...Quebec City
Do you need adventure? You can always stay at a hotel made entirely of snow and ice. There is an off chance you will be cold.... Inside you'll find the popular Ice Café, the breath taking (hee hee) ice chapel,indoor slide for the kids, 36 rooms and theme suites (one has a fireplace....humm), a Grand Hall with an ice candelabra illuminated fibre optically, a huge Ice Bar (you can squeeze in 400 of your closest friends)and three outdoor hot tubs and a sauna. It is worth the tour, but the $400 price tag, maybe not.

Join in the foto phun with Candid Carrie and friends or if you want to see more...Click here.

Wednesday, March 25

Wordless Wednesday- A day with my aquatic and feathery friends.

*O.k. I have to ease my mind... I am not skinny, but please understand that I had three jackets on...*

Monday, March 23

Fresh Air

I made some calls to lift my spirits, my heart was heavy. I thought some tears would cleanse me, but still my chest wore the weight of loneliness. Dragging my feet I closed the door to my apartment.

I walked the dirty snow lined streets within the walls of Old Quebec. I let my mind drift with the gentle breeze. Face to the sky I embraced the spring air. My chest filled while I counted to 10...back down it went. Each time counting my blessings.

Beneath each step I stunk deeper into 400 years of history. Founder Samuel de Champlain took my hand to share his city. Sculpted faces lined the sidewalk with pride. Joyous bells harmonized with the song of the sparrow. I took the muzzle of a beautiful horse in my hands. I shared a story about my days in the west and thanked him for the tender gift of listening.

Loneliness today slowly defined itself. It was then that I realized how lucky I am to have special people to miss.


Thanks for everyone who entered the "Fancy Feet" giveaway. It is funny that I chose that week to talk about The Body Shop at Home Consultant job... just a few days later they announced they were getting rid of that part of the business. Don't worry the stores will remain as is. BIG..HUGE..Congrats to A Family Completed... she is the winner of giveaway.
Don't forget....I have another giveaway going on CLICK HERE!

Sunday, March 22

Coffee and Small Balls

If you are here for the giveaways...cool. Go to the "Giveaway" tab above and voila....there they are.

Coffee and Small Balls

“Nothing you do or say...Love on the Rocks”-sing it to me Neil. Soothing sap from the two billboard legends. Whitney Houston just finished asking me “didn't we almost have it all”. Easy Rock...keep away from the sharp objects.

Bound and determined to escape the comforts of my own home I headed to Maguire Street. A swanky little area for the above average. No makeup, no shower, I grabbed the pants I wore yesterday and a sweater, I obviously didn't read the instructions when washing because my naval shows if I make any upward body movements. No one wants to see my love handles....the other voice in me says, “Don't look”.

I started at Starbucks, but I was not happy to find that I would have to pay to use the Internet. Next, Le Bagel, they sat me right away. I have been here 2 other times. Each of those ended with me walking out with a tick from irritation. The service is awful. One waitress, who apparently sleeps amongst the bagels at night was here again. Without fail she wasted no time trying to faked a smile instead she spat her unfriendly words at me while using threatening non-verbal gestures. (A very hard talent to master.) I paused for a moment wishing so much I could help her with whatever it is that makes her so unhappy. With a smile and bad French I ordered. “Time after time” plays through the speakers...how apropos.

I had to sneak a photo of this guy....totally French, right. I pretended to be taking a photo of the street then at the last minute swung it in his direction. Crafty photog. Work... Note the cream on white fashion risk, but he is owning it, snap.

Making it a weekend of "new", I suggested that we go bowling. Maybe a bit of forced effort to have fun, but whatever. Some of us went and quickly found out that some of us suck at bowling. Serious question, have you ever seen small balls? Get your mind out of the gutter, no pun intended, but how funny. (Now I know where that expression came from...thank you bowler people that's a good one.) I had never seen small balls, my husband and his friend had never seen small balls....but that is all they had. Small balls.

*We all look like we have jaundice due to the monochromatic yellow hues.

It is for that reason alone, it was the fault of the small balls that I never made it into the triple digits. Well, not really. I have never been a good "sports" person. The final score also exhibits...we are all pretty bad. This will most likely remain a once in a great while outing.

Thursday, March 19

A day of teaching...ESL

Friday Foto Finish Fiesta...play along, click here.

The sunrise played peek-a-boo behind trees. I wished for the warmth to fill me. Birds were flying and people were driving, everyone in a hurry. I let the wind grab a hold of my wings, slowly I landed.

It was 8:00 in the morning, two hours behind me and 9 hours to go... Hours went by yet time stood still. To be, present perfect and some prepositions... is the clock broken? Another student. Florescent lights, unflattering, unforgiving and unnerving with their incessant flicker. Not a window in sight. The hypnotic sounds of the warehouse drones on and on. Unknown words from the French speaking associates to my one English voice. I think I am lonely.

5 more hours, I'm on my toes...pacing between students. Anxiety from the 6x6 cell, it was closing in on me. The friendly faces and a desire to learn sat me down. The hands started to move. Then I remember time is a gift.

My 2 Giveaways....go to the top and click Giveaways. It's that easy. Have a great Friday!

Wednesday, March 18

Wordless Wednesday....

It's melting...(A parking meter that just emerged from the snow.)

Signs of Spring...

Hazards of Spring....(That is a sheet of ice on the sidewalk.)

Happy Wordless Wednesday!

Click here and try to win my "Foot Spa" giveaway....
Click here to learn more about "I love being carded!" card swap.

Monday, March 16

Happy Heifer....

Due to the graphic nature of this natural event I want you to be aware that birth of any kind is detailed...if you are not ready for that, you will not be ready for this post. (Photos within are ummm...detailed.)

4:00 a.m. the spot light bounces as the rubber tires on the four wheeler move across the new spring grass. Some of the mamas in waiting open their eyes only to be blinded by the light. (It is almost confirmed that someone in the band grew up on a farm and this is where the song "Blinded by the light" was born.) Using my pointer finger I play the opening key board sounds while the other hand firmly hits the gas. My mini rock concert takes place in the pasture of cows. Manfred Mann's Earth Band would be proud. My fans, although very impressed, do not move in the slightest way. Tough crowd tonight. An actual sigh of relieve comes out of me knowing that like everyone else I have no idea what the lyrics are after the first few words. I bow my head giving thanks to those ungrateful beef patties.

The night sky is full of stars. I kill the motor and stop my singing to hear the music of the night. A warm feeling of comforting arms wrap around me while the light breeze whispers in my ear. A coyote cries for a lovers return. The hoot of an owl brings question to my mind. A lone cow is mooing. In the distance I see the valley of Missoula is fast asleep.

I hopscotch through yesterdays placenta and listen to young mothers feeding their newborn. I sit and watch the bonding. A new mother's nervous tongue gently cleans her baby. Barely 24 hours old, together they moving into the direction of life, living, surviving. Still suckling for milk I leave them for the night.
(Photo taken at a different time...)

In the far corner of the field I see the silhouette of Double "O" Seven.
Aka, Oh Oh.... She is an older cow with years of calving under her belt, rarely without incidence. She stands there casually, smoke billowing out of her nostrils while enjoying her cud. Her backside reveals a calf making it's way into the world on this cold March night. Oh Oh, shows no sign of concern outside of her next meal or the treats I have in my pocket, something she is always acutely aware of. Perhaps this isn't the time to be focused on bite size treats as it should be all about birth. My eyes are open to our differences. I can almost guarantee that I wouldn't be nibbling on a carrot during birth...maybe ice cream. She lays down through a few of her contractions...still chewing and most likely not too concerned. (Photo taken at a different time...here to support the text.)

My nerves are getting the best of me. Like Oh Oh, I want to run into the house grab some food and wait. I know that it will be hour before her little one arrives. After laying in the field for what felt like half of the night I trudged my way back to the four wheeler. Climbing into bed I set the alarm anticipating the birth of another sweet calf.

Sunrise...a new baby.

If I had a JVC HD Camcorder, like the one An Ordinary Life is giving away....you could have watched a video. Seriously, I could have still played the key board solo, driven the four wheeler while taping it, how cool would that have been? The video camcorder fits into the palm of my hand. 150 hours of birth, now come on. That is entertainment at it's best. If you think I should win the camcorder or if you want to enter (and vote for me) hop on over and find out how.... I'll heart you forever!

Check out my giveaway is here.

Sunday, March 15

Mailbox Madness, I mean Happiness

I am BEHIND (Not: I am a behind) on posting about a few mailbox treats. I really never thought about mail until I left home. My mom has always been my heaven sent postal fairy. "Good Mail" didn't find me until last fall while nestled into a hillside deep within the Boise National Forest, surrounded by ponderosa pine and elk.

I recently joined a few swaps. One was for Valentine's Day to conquer my heart phobia. Diane my swap partner sent me a box filled with love-ly dove-ly, pitter patter, yummy in my tummy Valentine items. LOVED IT. Big thanks with x's & o's.

Then, Dandelion Wishes (such a fun blog) hosted a "Favorite Things" swap. This is where I met my cool, sassy, creative and super generous friend Scrappy Sue from New Zealand.
She sent me a lot of her favorite things that are now a few of my favorite things. My eco friendly bag was already come in handy. My lips sparkle as I leave for work. I have had the best chocolate treats for breakfast the last two mornings. THANKS Scrappy Sue and Dandelion Wishes for the mail box fun.

I received a very sweet card from a friend at home! (Thanks P.L.) Jill at Creative Musings & Such, sent me a card with a photo of the gift I sent her. Crafty and cute- Thanks Jill. Love the happy hot pink envelope....

Lots of loven to my mama who sent me some hard to find food that I like and some other goodies. Nothing says love like Combos and Zataran's- Red beans and rice.

Side note:
Get yourself some purty feet...Click here to be a part of my give-a-way!!!

Later gators......

Friday, March 13

Freebies, Give-A-Ways and Good Stuff...

I am really excited about my bloggy makeover.
Let's celebrate this fun occasion with a giveaway.

As I have mentioned before I am an at home sales consultant for The Body Shop. One day I inquired, twelve later I received three boxes full of products and training materials. Within a few weeks, I set up a "girls night out" (GNO) with a few friends. Sitting outside with 5 ladies I made money.... yup, that easy. I started small and stayed small, but the sky really is the limit.

This Body Shop giveaway is a step in the right direction.....

Get those winter toes ready for spring by soaking them in Peppermint Foot Soak. This 7.0 oz container makes for many soothing and deodorizing spa experiences in your own home. Once you have soaked your feet they are ready for the large pumice stone. Sluff away months of "boot feet", dry them, then lather them with Peppermint Cooling Foot Lotion (8.4 oz.) This is a customer favorite for the last fourteen years...a must have for summer. All these items fit nicely inside the roomycanvas cosmetic bag.

How do you win:
Tell me....after The Body Shop items work their magic what color nail polish would you put on them?
For an additional entry, just start to follow my blog or you can just stalk me. Whatever tickles your tootsies.
*Please leave a separate comment for each entry.

*Semi important stuff.
This Annonandon sponsored gift-a-way is open to United States and my new Canadian homies. The final day to enter is Sunday, March 22, 2009. I will then e-mail the lucky winner. You will have only 3 days to claim your prize before I move on to the next person.

If you are a little curious about becoming an at home consultant let me know. I will email you the info, you can read it and if you want to know more, email me again. You control the situation.

Thursday, March 12


Welcome to my new blog!!! (This is my Friday Photo Finish Fiesta...)

The audience is on their feet clapping fervently. Arms full of roses. I cast my eyes down and bow to show appreciation. A quick tap on the microphone..."May I have your attention? I would like to thank Sara. It is her creative mind and patience that has produced this crafty blog. I am so excited and hope all of you like it." I step away with a smile on my face while happy blogging thoughts swirl in my head....

Sara at Subjective Beauty....is amazing! From the first conversation to the final product she has been open to all my ideas, even when they made no sense at all. She fit me into her busy schedule and made me feel like I was her #1 priority.
If you are thinking about changing your blog big or small, I promise you she can do it.

I will have a new blog kick off tomorrow afternoon! You will not want to miss this "Grand Opening"......

*Thanks again Sara.

Tuesday, March 10

Cafe Babylon

A friend invited me to a Stitch & Bitch. Let us remember the last time I picked up knitting needles they ended up in the wall of the Idaho mobe. Refresh your memory here. Now, add French. For obvious reasons I am enjoying the wireless internet, while casually casting evil eyes at the talent surrounding the table. For all they know I have bad eye sight and need to squint....with daggers. (Sinister laugh followed by an honest sad sigh.)

The top of my tights are digging into my ample mid section creating unusual rolls both on top of the elastic and below. I am one sexy kitten. Meow! Gag! Casually I tucked my tummy under the table. My thoughts drift to accidentally breaking my P90X cd's. I know it hasn't been very long and I am not 100% consistent (90% is close), but I honestly thought I would see some improvement.

I am attempting to speak in French tonight. (A chorus of crickets have started chirping at my end of the table.) The waiter played along with my unforgiving French. I thought (key word) I ordered a glass of white wine and a Pellegrino. Tipping the tray upon his arrival I had a healthy serving of vodka on ice and a glass of vin blanc (white wine), a Pellegrino and a bottle of wine. Hummmm.... maybe I shouldn't order in French, ever again!

After getting over that ridiculous error and my cheeks started to return to their natural color. We held our glasses to celebrate our gathering, three people said sante' and one said "salud". I sunk lower into my chair. A nervous giggle (in English...hee hee) squeaked through my trembling lips.

I really wanted to order a dessert, but refrained. I would most likely end up with a medium rare steak.

The exposed brick walls adorned with local art, the cabinet filled with novels, the wood floors historical to sight and the miss match chairs filled me with French delight...

The waiter caught my eyes and an encouraging smile crossed his face.

Monday, March 9

SPT= Self Portrait Tuesday


The assignment: each tuesday of march, your challenge is to feature the number 8. you have free reign each week to decide how you will include the number in your post. the only rule is that the numeral itself must be part of the photograph!! so get out there and search for 8s!! i bet you can find them everywhere. If you would like to join in click HERE for Amuse-Bouche.

2008 Taxes......sorry for the reminder.

On a sweeter note... I am pointing to an 8 on the nutritional chart. Thank goodness I read it, written on the box are instructions to eat 8 because there are only 8 calories in each one. (Smile)

Don't worry the toothpicks will come out to alleviate a student getting impaled.
(I use them to keep the saran wrap from sticking to the frosting during transport. We have to make the most of each calorie, right.)