July 31, 2014

Thursday Thirteen Bits of Random

  1. After tomorrow, C-man is done with his favorite 6-week summer camp for the season, and he moves on to a new one. Wow, that went fast.
  2. I didn't know I could love Legolas any more than I already did.
  3. It was 48 degrees for my bees this morning. On the last day of July. That's ridiculous.
  4. I don't know how I'm going to explain the Cespedes trade to C-man. He's going to be a little crushed.
  5. It's been a terrible summer for movie releases. I haven't wanted to go see a single one. Bummer.
  6. I started looking for a Packers game date to get tickets. They're already priced at over $200 a ticket. Sheesh!
  7. In good news, it's almost the weekend and we have no significant plans.
  8. C-man is invited to a birthday party and the request was for gift cards to local restaurants to donate to the Children's Hospital families. I thought that was awesome.
  9. Way better than a kid I know who told me he invited a bunch of kids to his party just so he could get a ton of presents.
  10. I've been interviewing a ton of people lately, many of whom have major errors on their resumes. How is that even possible?
  11. I want to go geocaching this weekend. We haven't gone all summer.
  12. Right after the farmers market. I adore the farmers market.
  13. I hope my bee man is at the market. I want to chat with him again about my hives.

July 30, 2014

When you're a mess

My recurring ulcer is all flarey-flarey. The rain is causing crushing pain to my back. My skin is gross. My head hurts. So pretty much, I'm a mess.

And so, I'm half-ass cleansing again this week. (You know, before I kill it all at State Fair) I'm cutting out the sugar, replacing my lunch with a gross shake, and having only one cup of coffee per day. It's a less drastic way to go than the full out not eating for 10 days nonsense. I'm hoping I still see results, because this is a much more palatable way to go about it for me.

July 29, 2014

10 happy things

I feel like griping and complaining. Iraq's constant coverage, the reasons for the nonexistent Syria coverage, unstoppable ebola outbreaks, Putin, Pakistani riots, my back... But putting that negativity in its fullest form out to the universe (wow, does that ever sound hippy dippy!) seems like a bad idea.

So here are 10 happy things:
  1. My bees are cooking along extremely well. Beatrix is a mess, but that's okay. They're really happy. And happy bees make happy honey.
  2. Coffee with half and half is so delicious. (I think that's always on the top 10 list!)
  3. Alba's pore-fecting face mask
  4. Reading the latest Gabriel Allon book
  5. Graphic t-shirts. My favorite is a new one that just says, "Hello"
  6. An invitation to another team's breakfast potluck. All the food, and none of the work
  7. Wear whatever you want to work dress code
  8. A sunny walk on the beach
  9. A meeting-less afternoon I'm going to spend working from home
  10. My musical shower head

July 28, 2014

Just like that, it's Monday again

  • C-man is home again after a weekend up north with his cousins. He was all huggy and happy. And then he was overtired and ornery. That homecoming honeymoon was short-lived.
  • This ebola thing scares me. More than the-Russians-are-going-to-nuke-us fear in the 80s.
  • Bats scare me, too. And there's always at least one hanging out in my sun umbrella and flies out when I open it. Shudder.
  • During my childhood, there were bats in the house. All the time. I'd wake up in the middle of the night and feel them swoop over me. Shudder. ACK! I don't care how good they are, and that whole all God's creatures thing, I hate them.
  • I need to look at my calendar and take some days off. I'm feeling burned out with things.
  • Beatrix's hive was all crazy. They've got brood and larva and honey, but also have comb everywhere. I mean, everywhere. They are definitely my "creative" hive.
  • I would like a nap.

July 27, 2014

Another day?

The weekend shouldn't have to end. The weather was beautiful. The bees are cooking along. (A second brood box on Beatrix and a honey super on Amelia) And I'm finally starting to feel better. I demand another day!

July 26, 2014

Summer. It's a good, good thing.

I turned away two phone calls and a knock at the door looking for C-man while he's up north playing. Only children are introverted and socially dysfunctional, they said. Yeah, I'll be sure to tell him when he returns from a weekend of playing with his cousins.

Meanwhile, I got to talk with the beekeeper at the farmers market, mow my lawn, take a long walk along the lake, and pick up C-man's room. Tonight, we head to the beer garden with friends.

Summer. It's a good, good thing.

July 25, 2014


My kid is heading north to hang with his cousin for the weekend.
Beerman is going to help a friend put up a shed.
The possibilities... they are endless...

July 24, 2014

Thursday ten bits of random because I can't get to thirteen

  1. Oh my gosh, I hate being sick in the summer. I've got a cough that is deep in my chest and overall I just feel terrible. I'm supposed to read in church on Sunday, but hopefully someone will take it for me so I don't inadvertently hack on top of everyone.
  2. Pirates of the Caribbean 5 is going to be filmed. I adore Johnny Depp, but I think we beat that horse about 2 movies ago.
  3. The Fifty Shades of grey trailer is out. As dippy as the books were, I'm totally going to that movie.
  4. I'm feeling so crummy, I'd really like to go home and watch Sweet Home Alabama with Harry at my feet.
  5. Speaking of Harry, I forgot to pay the dog walker today. Darn it.
  6. These continued botched death row executions make me so sad. The concept of justifying evil with evil eludes me.
  7. I'm going to visit my bees on Sunday. I'm really hoping they're doing okay. I need to get a second brood box on Beatrix and a honey super on Amelia if they're going to have any chance of making it through the winter.
  8. I can't believe I'm thinking winter already. Oy!
  9. We have a beer garden party planned with our friends this weekend. I love the local beer gardens.
  10. I have little patience today.

July 22, 2014

Best laid plans

This baby bunny has crawled down my throat. At least it feels like it. I was really planning on taking this week to get healthy and try another 3-day version of the cleanse and cut out the sugar and coffee. Yeah, whatever.

Sugar me. Caffeine me. Leave me alone.

July 21, 2014

Monday's child

Well, we're back to Monday again.

  • I tweaked my lower back yesterday while weeding out in the yard. Man, it hurts.
  • Beerman and I have caught C-man's summer virus, so it feels like a cat is living at the top of my throat.
  • It's been a good year for cool flying stuff in our gardens. Last year there was almost nothing. This year is worthy of hours of watching monarchs and bees and dragonflies.
  • I have a bevy of mourning doves in my backyard. I ran out of the Kaytee finch food, and substituted with the local garden store finch good and they all left. I put it back in, and they're back. Amazon Subscribe n Save on that stuff, because I love my cooing doves.
  • Except I saw a hawk hunting in our backyard yesterday. I'm trying not to think about the ramifications of that.
  • There were two local skydiving accidents this weekend. If you're hurtling yourself out of a plane, and you get hurt, can it really be called an accident?
  • I'm knee deep into The Heist. I wait all year for my Gabriel Allon books, and then whip through them. I'm trying to take this one slower so I don't mourn it so hard after.
  • I've been getting some friend request acceptances on Facebook. From people I don't know, and never requested. What's up with that?
  • It's been nice and warm. I hope that means my bees are happy. It's hard going two weeks without seeing them. Although it was incredibly nice to not have to make a multi-hour drive this weekend.
  • Beerman and I closed down another new beer garden this weekend. It's right outside where we had our wedding reception. I didn't see the bride, but the wedding wasn't as amazing as ours.

July 20, 2014

Life at this house

Yesterday, C-man woke up at the house,with Kid 1 (neighbor) here after having slept over. They played all morning (turning down an invite from Kid 2 to come over) and later picked up Kid 3 from the neighborhood on their bikes. C-man has a summer cold, so I told him that about 1 pm, he should come home for some quiet time, which he did instead of meeting more neighborhood kids for pickup soccer at the school behind the house. 15 minutes later, Kid 4 called for him to come over and play. Which he did until 5, (missing an invite for a sleepover from Kid 5 while there) so he could come home to clean up to go to Kid 1's birthday party with 14 other boys. (The puppy at Kid 4's house chewed his flip flops, so his mother went out and promptly bought him an ultra-expensive pair to replace his $20 stinky ones that needed replacing.) He slept over at Kid 1's house with 3 other boys.

Today, after coming home from the sleepover and having some breakfast with us, he went swimming at Kid 2's house. (A house at which we were instructed to enter the "East entrance".) Meanwhile, Kids 1 and 3 have shown up at the door twice looking for him to come play.

I had planned a slower day of us geocaching, a picnic, and hanging out as a family. My introverted self cannot even imagine going through the out and about that C-man has happily partaken in this weekend. Especially when not feeling 100%. But he absolutely thrives on it. I'm thankful he's so happy and makes friends so easily, but wow, it's exhausting just watching!

July 19, 2014

One of those kinds of days

It has been a lawn mowing, bird feeding, farmers marketing, dog park walking, brand new Gabriel Allon book reading, bathroom painting, laundry doing, play dating, garden photo taking, sun tea drinking, kind of days. Up next, a date with my love.

July 18, 2014

Garden walks

I can't legally or ethically keep bees in my yard, but at least our bee-friendly gardens are inviting and welcoming for the local bumblebees, milkweed bugs, mason bees, and somebody's rogue honeybees. (There are at least 2 hives, because there are Italians and Russians flying around!) It's my nightly calm when I get home on a beautiful night. There's no messy house, no XBox, no neighbor kid, no laundry to switch over, no dishwasher to empty... Just me, a camera, and my flying pollinators in the milkweed as the doves coo.

July 17, 2014

Random observations

  • There is no safe way to eat a powdered sugar donut
  • Walking into work with a box of donuts makes everyone smile
  • Senior pictures taken on railroad tracks look stupid
  • So do jumping wedding photos
  • Coffee makes things better
  • An afternoon nap would make things better yet
  • Havianas makes some of the most comfortable shoes ever
  • Flying Malaysian Airlines is a bad idea
  • The bumblebees in my yard are chubby

July 16, 2014

Is it the weekend yet?

  • The church asked me to take photos of the church's exterior and interior for the new website. C-man was not happy with having to go after camp to do it. But he lived.
  • I had to fight with FedEx because I rented a wide-angle lens that they didn't deliver on time, even though I paid extra to get it shipped on Saturday. I'm done with using FedEx.
  • How is it only Wednesday in this crazy week?
  • How is the temperature in the 40s for my bees? 40s?!? It's July. This is crazy.
  • I can't get full lately. I don't like that.
  • Is it the weekend yet?

July 15, 2014

So I guess I'm a beekeeper: And it's finally going the right way

So this weekend I went to see my bees. The good news is all is well.

Amelia's hive has built out comb throughout both brood boxes. The bottom box was filled with sealed brood, ready for baby bees to be born this week. There were even a couple frames of sealed honey. The second box was drawn out in 5 frames, and had eggs and larva, which means that even though I didn't see Amelia, she was up there. (The queen is usually within a frame of the day-old sticking straight up perpendicular to the frame eggs.) Overall, the frames were textbook pretty from a beekeeper's perspective.

Beatrix's hive was built out a bit more, although still in only one brood box, and less than textbook. There were eggs, larva, and sealed brood. There was also a bunch of comb being built on the wooden sides of the hive box. This hive is definitely doing things its own way! It was comforting to see them drawing out comb and that Beatrix had many baby bees ready to be born this week. So it's directionally correct, if not a little frustrating.

Both hives were incredibly happy and gentle. I didn't need smoke or my net, which was a nice treat. So here's to another two weeks of them making babies and honey!

July 14, 2014

Solidly summer

It was an incredibly busy weekend. There was cribbage and beers at the bier garten. (And someone might have won 5 games to his 1. No names need be mentioned.) There were happy honeybees and a family wedding reception. And there was the World Cup party and lawn mowing. All in all, a pretty solid summer weekend. Now, we prepare for the July polar vortex. Summer was nice while it lasted that one day, I guess.

July 11, 2014

Heading out

C-man is going to the Brewers game with a friend tonight. (He claims he'll be able to touch the dugout from his seats.) So Beerman and I have a night out. The problem is, where? Bastille Days is going on. And it's supposed to be nice enough for the Biergarten. Choices, choices, choices... I love it.

July 10, 2014

Past Humpday

  • Somebody in the neighborhood has a rogue honeybee hive, because they're regularly getting drunk off my milkweed.
  • I'm really jealous someone has a hive. I took a neighborhood walk to try to figure out where it is, with no luck. There are so many possible hiding places, that I'm going to need to follow the bees a bit closer today.
  • I get to see my own bees on Saturday. I'm so excited. I really hope they're doing well.
  • The loss of both Brazil and the Netherlands put C-man into such a funk, he was not fun to deal with last night. Apparently he's "that guy" with sports losses.
  • It'd be about right to have an Argentina win in Brazil. They spend billions on it only to have their mortal enemy take it all?
  • I got my hair cut and highlighted the other night, so she straightened it. I went to work that way. It'll be a long time before I do that again, because it hijacked every meeting I was in. "It's just straight hair, people!"

July 8, 2014

So this is happening

  • These incredibly stormy nights have been so oppressive. I've resisted taking too much Tramdol because while it conks me out, I hate to rely on that junk too much.
  • I picked C-man up from a sleepover to take to camp. He had his Neymar jersey on in anticipation of today's game. And the same socks he wore yesterday and a dirty face. Oh well, you can't win them all.
  • I'm getting my hair cut and colored today. I hate sitting in the chairs that long, but they're both overdue.
  • A bee visit is going to happen this weekend. I can't wait. It's been hot and muggy, so if they aren't making things happen now, I'm going to be really sad.

July 7, 2014

Long weekend hangover

The long weekend is unfortunately over. We came back on Saturday, which was a really smart choice. It gave us time to get the groceries and mow the lawn and do the laundry. Plus, C-man has not been acting like himself, so it gave him time to just lay around and veg out. I don't know if it's a virus or allergies or just to much doing stuff or all of it combined, but he's visibly exhausted. I guess it happens when you're 9 and running non-stop. Speaking of that, I need to get a gift card for a birthday party sleepover he's going to tonight. No rest for the social butterflies, I suppose.

July 5, 2014

5th of July

It was a holiday filled with sun and the lake and a boat and food and cousins. (And a big ass drive I'd rather forget.) A good, good time.

July 3, 2014

It's going to be a good day

When the day starts with breakfast out with your favorite kid, and finds you working from home for a half-day, after which you've planned to be walking the dog at the park and then picking the kid up early... It's going to be a good, good day.

July 2, 2014

Caring ADD

Having a chronic illness and pain sucks. That sort of goes without saying. But as I got one more request for a meal train for someone who had a baby, I got to thinking. Mostly about the friend who can't make ends meet because a chronic illness means her husband cannot work, and she is trying to pull it all together herself. Where's the meal train? Where's the fundraiser? Where's the support?

We celebrate events. We rally around single surgeries. We show up with food. We send plants. We call one another to talk about it. We seem to know what to do with those single things. But draw something unpleasant out, and everyone loses interest. Or even are paralyzed by what to do, so they end up doing nothing. Then there's the problem to even know whether, when, or how they should bring the unfortunate issue up, because God forbid someone discuss what's really going on if it might bring someone down. Just look at when someone dies. Everyone shows up with crappy casseroles and taco dips, and then *poof* they're all just gone, back to their "normal" lives. It's like we have Caring ADD. It's fine to concern ourselves with something once, because then we feel good about our "contribution". But more than that, well... that's quite a lot of work, and there's other stuff to deal with in my own life.

Compounding the complicated issue, I can tell you from experience, that those dealing with ongoing crap don't want to come across as anything less than strong. Mentioning my pain makes me feel like I cannot tolerate it. And because it's not a single event, it's not something to ask for help about. Because really, what would be different on this Monday versus next Monday? And what would you ask for help with? I see similar situations with those dealing with eldercare. One day runs into the next with absolutely no reprieve, and there is no crappy casserole showing up at the door. (Can you tell how I feel about casseroles?)

So this is what I've decided. This month, I'm going to make it a focus to help someone who doesn't ask for it. Because I think they're the ones who need it the most. And hopefully, by next month it'll just be a routine thing to remember to do.

July 1, 2014

Puffy McStuffy

My hands and feet are puffy and my nose is stuffy. I am quite a sight to behold. Oh, and down with Belgian waffles!