Friday, January 25, 2008

Round Up

This is going to be a short round-up today. I have some plague that won't let go of me.

The Free Government Information cite has a list of free Government Podcasts.

My love has strayed from 2 of my favorite products:

We have a cute pub table and two stools in our kitchen. Just perfect for the two of us. I ended up placing the hot teakettle down on the table (it is black) and it caused a couple of white rings. We tried everything under the sun to try and remove the marks. We were going to repaint the table, but I discovered the Guardsman Stain Removal Cloth. It removed the stain with some very deliverate rubbing. There's a little variation in the color of the table, but I shined the table with some furniture polish and it looks great. Another magical product.

January 1st, 2008 was Public Domain Day. Copyright Watch has a list (kind of difficult to read) of authors whose works are now in the public domain this year. It's the January 1st entry.

Info Farm-the National Agriculture Library's blog.

Check out these very cool switchplates and outlet covers at Tin Can Sally.

"The most important scientific revolutions all include, as their only common feature, the dethronement of human arrogance from one pedestal after another of previous convictions about our centrality in the cosmos." - Stephen Jay Gould

Friday, January 18, 2008

Round Up

I visit the Fishs Eddy site all of the time. Good thing I don't live near their bricks and mortar store-I'd be broke all of the time. Check out the political mugs.

Flora and Henri have some of the cutest kids cloths I've seen in a long time.

Look at the vendela roses. Aren't they gorgeous? They have a subtle pink glow about them.

Look at these very cool spelling bee word pendants.

Some more bling-look at this awesome anchor stack ring from Fancy Jewels.

I think I am going to have to purchase one of these European market totes for my forays to the Farmers Market this spring and summer.

Have a good weekend everyone. Monday will be the observance of the Reverand Doctor Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday. It might be nice to stop and remember him and some of his incredibly important messages.

"Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it. "
Martin Luther King Jr.

"I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. That is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant." Martin Luther King Jr.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


The purse that I have been carrying for awhile has seen better days. I started carrying this purse, black, like almost all of my purses, because my shoulder was killing me and I deduced it was from carrying my way too large, overloaded tote bag. I moved half of everything in my tote to this much smaller bag and had to relearn my purse things. Anyone who carries a purse knows that this can be extremely trying and stressful. I kid you not.

The straps on this purse are getting ready to rip. And when they do I will more than likely throw the purse away. I hate doing that, but trying to get the straps repaired will more than likely cost more than it would to purchase another purse.

When I was growing up purse strap repair,shoe resoleing, and a myriad of other things were all taken to the Shoemaker. He was located in Monessen, Pennsylvania and even when we moved 13 miles away we still took all of our shoes and whatnot there to be repaired. I can still smell this cute little man's shop. After my grandparents moved out to the country my grandfather became the unofficial errand runner. He would take all of our cleaning, our shoes to be repaired to Monesson on his daily runs and then deliver them back to us. Of course never allowing us to reimberse him.

My grandfather was a very dapper man. Whenever black people talk about someone having "good hair" they usually mean the person has hair like white people or Indian people (Native Americans). My grandfather didn't have a lot of hair by the time I came around, but what he did have was absolutely gorgeous. He looked like a very handsome Native American man and he could have given Johnny Depp a run for his money in the gorgeous cheekbone department.

For me he was what a grandpa should be. Full of stories and jokes. If it weren't for him I wouldn't know the tiny little bit of math that I do know. Sorry, Gramps, I still can't get fractions, and you really tried so hard.

This is a man who started out as a coal miner and then went into the steel mill. In his spare time he did everyone's taxes. He was still doing this when he was in his early 80's. We always wanted to buy him calculators and adding machines, but he balked at those conveniences. He thought those items made your mind weak.

When I was very young he taught me about the constellations and whenever we would go for walks he would sing me this song:
When I was walking down the street,
With my broom, sweep the street,
When somebody moved the street,
I fall down and go BOOM!!!

Every baby that ends up in my arms I walk around with them and sing my Grandpa's song to them.

He would have been 93 in a couple of weeks if throat cancer hadn't taken him away. I miss James Allen Cary Douglas Hill so much. He was such a character.

So when these purse straps give out I'll just purchase a new bag. It's not environmentally cool, but my grandfather isn't around to take my purse to the Shoemaker. Somehow it just isn't the same if I would do it myself.

"One of the most powerful handclasps is that of a new grandbaby around the finger of a grandfather." --Joy Hargrove

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Way back in the mists of time, way before I had so much "junk in the trunk" I was an avid kilt wearer. In fact, I was fairly ga-ga over anything remotely to do with Scotland. I've said before how I am an Anglophile, and a Scandinaviaphile, but what I really am is a Scotlandaholic.

I first became wooed by Scotland when as a mere lass I read The Clue of the Whistling Bagpipes, a Nancy Drew Mystery. After reading that I was hooked on anything to do with a country, that for me at that young age, was full of heather, Scottie dogs, bagpipes and tartans.

My standard outfit was a plaid skirt or kilt, a black or dark sweater, knee socks and penny loafers(with the pennies). Unfortunately a life time of financial constraints has not permitted me to visit Scotland, but hopefully I will get there in the future.

My head still turns whenever I see someone with what looks like a tartan on their person. I was noticing that tartans, and plaids in general, were featured in a quite a few of the holiday issues of some of the home magazines. I saw quite a few photographs of black and red tartans being used as tree skirts.

There are oodles of sites dedicated to tartans. Here, here is a link for the Scottish Tartans Museum, the House of Tartan, and an Index of Military Tartans, just to name a few.

Tartan is also known as plaid in North America, but in Scotland this word means a tartan cloth slung over the shoulder or a blanket. (quote from Wikipedia)I find it so interesting that clans, professions and different schools have their own tartans. Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania has always had the nickname of the Tartans and has a Scottie Dog as its mascot, all in homage to the school's founder Scot Andrew Carnegie.

My favorite tartan changes all of the time, but of late I have fallen for this tartan called Apache North Sea. It's a commemorative tartan.

"The Tartan describes the distinctive checkered pattern generally worked out in a woven material such as woolen cloth. Each particular pattern is known as a "sett". Such tartan material is a characteristically Scottish product. ..." Scottish Glossary

Friday, January 04, 2008

7 Things

So, I'm a bit behind in reading the comments left on my blog. I so apologize Laundress. The Laundress has tagged me for the 7 weird/random things about me meme. I've mentioned the wondrous Dirty Laundry blog, written by said Laundress, many times.

7 weird/random things about me

Here are the rules:

Link to the person (i.e. Laundress) who tagged you.

Post the rules on your blog:

Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog.

Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.

Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Okay, I'll list 7 things about me, but I think I'll leave it to if anyone reading my blog wants to list their 7 random things they can.

Here goes: (I may have spoken about some of these things before-can't remember and too darn lazy to check)

1. I can't swim. I have taken swimming lessons. I have had numerous people including friends of both genders, my younger brother, and professionals trying to teach me to swim and I still can't do it. It's a goal that is always in the back of my mind,and I still want to learn. The problem is that I don't want to get my face wet. There I've said it.

2.I have a couple of weird fears. Water lilies and the garbage disposal. Why am I afraid of these? Who in the hell knows? Water lilies just freak me out. They are like some giant botanical platter. The garbage disposal terrifies me even if it's not on. I just think that it's going to some how suck my arm in there and gnaw it to bits.

3. When I was a child I refused to drink water that came from one of the bathroom faucets. I just thought it was gross. So whenever I was sick,and I was sick a lot, my poor mother would have to traipse all the way down to the kitchen and get me water. (what a brat I was about that).

4. I do not like the sun. I love the moon, hate the sun. I loathe being hot, don't want a tan and I wear sunglasses all year because that pesky bright orb hurts my eyes. I prefer cool/cold gray days to bright blue sunny days.

5. I could go through the rest of my life without having bread, cereal, added salt and nuts.

6. I love to bake and I could bake every day (if I wasn't the only one in my two-person home that would eat the baked goods). Cooking is another thing. I used to enjoy it, but now most of what I want to eat I can't have so I'm kind of pissed off at food these days.

7 One summer I lived on iced tea, Ritz Crackers with port wine cheese and melted cheese with mustard on it. Actually I could go for all of the above right now.

So there you are. Any folks who want to list their weirdness, go ahead. It's fun.

Round Up

Three years. I have been blogging for 3 years. I've wanted to quit quite a few times, but I'm still having fun, so I guess I will continue to blog.

Not only is it the 40th anniversary for the Smithsonian Institution Libraries(I'll post more about the libraries anniversary in the coming year), but it's the 100th anniversary of the publication of Anne of Green Gables.

Two documentaries that I am looking forward to seeing: Dr. Bronner's Magic Soapbox and the 13 Grandmothers documentary. Here's the trailer for the 13 Grandmothers docuemntary. More information on the 13 Grandmothers here.

Here is the press release for the 2007 additions to the National Film Registry.

Many moons ago I wanted to be a midwife, and I still am drawn to anything the least bit midwifery. Midwife with a Knife is a blog written by an Ob-Gyn. I love her writing and have added it to my must read list. (maybe this year I'll finally add a blogroll to my blog).

Take a gander at these holiday/winter drinks inspired by Charles Dickens.

It seems like every year there are certain commercials that cause me to get my ample butt off of the couch and dance around to the music like a maniac. This holiday season it was the Korbel Champagne commercial. A. and I at first thought the song was by The Pussycat Dolls, but it's not. It's by Bitter Sweet and it's The Mating Game.

Big list of sites that teach you how to do stuff.

I leave you with the Sesame Street Video Archive. It's not comprehensive (yet), but the archive is keyword tagged and searchable.

Now I'm off to do some "Zerotasking [v.] Doing nothing ". (from the Ridiculous Business Jargon Dictionary).

"The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious ... the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science." - Albert Einstein