27 January 2014


I often post pictures on Facebook of Sparky. If you didn't know better, you'd think I adored him.

The truth is that he drives me crazy because of his constant barking. He is cute though. Is the last picture not the most adorable thing? He got a super-short clipping that day so I bought him a coat and slipper booties. He walked right out of them, but not before I caught it on 'film'. I'm sure there are lots of things I could do to try to stop the barking, but I just don't feel like taking the time to do it. He's not my dog. Personally, I think he spends too much time in his crate. When he's out and I'm home, he stands in front of the living room window and barks. If I keep the blinds all the way down, he bends them to see through. It's a quandry for me. So far my best escape from the barking is to just not be here. I don't like to complain, but it's become a real issue. Part of the problem might also be his lack of exercise. We were walking at least 3 miles every morning but since this artic weather has settled in, we haven't. I'm going to see if someone has a treadmill I can borrow. My dog-whisperer friend says all dogs love running on treadmills. I may put him on one and never take him off. Not really. I'd take him off eventually.

I finished watching the first two seasons of Scandal. So, so good. I haven't watched any of season three. I'll wait till it's over and watch it on Netflix. I wonder what series I should watch next? On that note, I'm going to catch up on some DVR'd shows now. With closed-captioning on so I can understand the dialogue, what with all the barking. Besides all the usual things I'm thankful for on a daily basis, today I'm especially thankful for closed-captioning.

18 January 2014

Inspired by coffee

The last two days at work have been SO busy. I'm so grateful I can keep up. I work with people half my age who complain about how beat they are. I'm lucky. I have my mom's genes and my family's work ethic. Not to say I wasn't SO glad to find that my last client cancelled and I got to leave 30 minutes early. Bonus that I really needed. And here I am at Starbucks with my super-charged latte getting energized. Happy me. Simple things. My plan was to watch Scandal on Netflix here, but the wi-fi is too slow so I'm listening to John Lennon and writing. My segue time between earlier and later. And talking about Starbucks, which is very corporate, it's still a great gathering place. My new favortie coffee place is City Dock in Annapolis, and when I'm there, I'm there. 

Years ago I was really into stamping. Rubber stamping. I was obscessed by it. I loved buying all the art supplies and the organizers to store everything in. I loved the whole creative process. Using my watercolor pencils and watercolors. The design. The composition. I'd go to Border's after work and read Rubber Stamping magazines while drinking my latte. I'd get so inspired with the help of the caffeine and the magazines. I never thought the day would come that I wouldn't be stamping. I kept copies of all the cards I ever made. I look at them now and think, I really made these? How could I have? Where did that talent come from? A chunk of my basement holds that part of my life. All the stamps, inks, chalks, watercolors, cardstock, glues, imbossing powders, etc, etc... It needs a new home. I do miss being creative, although of course I'm creative on a daily basis at work. For a while I sewed. I did cross stitch for years. Maybe one day I'll write about my new hobby. Whatever that might be. 

Art at Work

16 January 2014

Inside and outside (my comfort zone)

I've wanted to write but haven't had the time. How can I not have time for a half-hour? I don't know but it's true. It doesn't help that I'm obsessed with the TV show Scandal. OMG so good! I've been watching it on Netflix. If I have 10 minutes between clients you'll find me watching it. That's just one thing that keeps me busy. 

I'm at City Dock with my latte now. A perfect place and time to write. We went to Tsunami for sushi last night (for locals who know the area). I've only recently discovered real sushi. Prior to that, my only experience was cooked sushi at Wegman's. I'd never had and never thought I'd ever touch raw sushi. Was I ever missing out on an amazing culinary experience! I'm a convert. Have I ever mentioned how much I love to eat? I have to be careful or I'd weigh a lot. The genes run in my family.

Here's a topic. Loud people. Loud people on their phones is in a catagory of its own. I think they must not be aware of how loud they are. I can't imagine otherwise. I'm super quiet when I'm on the phone in public. I'm a model citizen, you know. Haha. What I'm talking about is people talking to each other in public. A for instance is when I was in the sauna at the gym after a long workout. I'm lying down ready for peace and quiet, but outside the sauna, in the bathroom area, are two friends talking really loud and laughing and teasing and having a great time. I'm trying to relax and be introspective. No go. The loud people are certainly entitled to their good time together. I'm happy for them. I'm also SO annoyed that I have to hear it. I try putting my fingers in my ears. I put my hands over my ears. All to no avail. End of story. That's life. 

So...guess who went to Key West for the weekend? Someone who has always wanted to go to Key West? Who's been longing for palm trees and turquoise water for years? It's me and it was all and more than I thought it would be. I went as Peter's guest on a trip he won with his company. It was at a 5-star resort. What a treat for me. There were palm trees everywhere. Hammocks between them at the resort. Beautiful blue water everywhere. A vibrant, fun town. Old buildings. Artsy people. Street performers. Bars and restaurants everywhere. Live music at almost every establishment. Etc...

Hello pelicans

Hanging with the heads

Cluck, cluck, cockle doodle do

Kapok tree

View from Ernest Hemmingway's house

Sunset from Mallory Square

Tip-reprieving dog in surf shorts

At the resort



Do I look like a natural or what?

View of the resort from my jet ski

And of course...

Night life :)

View from the hammock

Good-bye Casa Marina


The most thrilling part of the trip was the jet-skiing. I'd never been on one. I was afraid but was going to be brave and just do it and have fun. It dawned very breezy with choppy water on the day of our outing. Not an auspicious start. The long and short was that we went a minium of 40-something mph. It was so hard for me to keep up. There were 15 of us in a row. Water was constantly splashing up in my face. It was chilly. It was super choppy. I couldn't enjoy any off the scenery because all I could concentrate on was keeping up. I think I went as fast as 60 mph. We went 27 miles around the island with a few stops. I'm so glad I did it. I challenged myself to something way out of my comfort zone and succeeded. If we had gone much slower, I would have loved it. It made an awesome memory. Laying on the hammocks between the beautiful palm trees made a much more relaxing memory. The whole trip was a true gift and I'm so grateful.

Time to move along. Next stop is a visit to see my parents. Then on to the gym. I love my days off! Life is good.

06 January 2014


Time really does fly. Wasn't it just Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year's? I hope this winter flies by. It's my least favorite season. Of course as I write this it's -2° with the wind chill and the wind is absolutely howling. I just came in from taking Sparky (Barky) out and it was frigid. I know it's a whole lot colder in other parts of the country. We all have reason to complain about the weather. The polar vortex. I'm very, very thankful that I have a warm home to shelter me from the cold, and that it's not snowing. 

To catch up...I had a great New Year's Eve in Annapolis. I went with my new 'friend' to dinner at his best friend's house. He and his wife were wonderful. So nice to meet them. We proceded to 'crash' about 4 parties of neighbors of theirs. They were really happy to have us stop by. We watched fireworks from City Dock at midnight, then went to Middleton Tavern and danced till they closed. It was the first year in many that I went out for New Year's. It was especially nice that we could walk everywhere.

It was hard getting back into the work routine after having many days off during the holidays. I was thinking that tomorrow would start my first real work week, then remembered I'm going away next weekend. More about that later. I'm excited!

I'm so glad I decorated lightly for the holidays since I haven't put anything away.

Last night we went out with my friend's other best friend and his wife. We went to a place called Mustang Alley Bar Bowling and Bistro in the Camden neighborhood of Baltimore. What a great place. They have 12 lanes. It was a blast. We bowled duckpins. I was pretty bad but with the wine, it didn't matter. 

I went to the gym yesterday and today. Yea me. I hadn't been in over a week. Yesterday I did the treadmill while listening to my audio book. I swam 1/3 of a mile. Today the place was packed and I saw that every treadmill was being used. I skipped that part and swam a mile. The whole front of the building is glass. I was able to watch the sunset as I swam. How cool is that? I rested in the sauna after swimming. I find that very peaceful. I tried to meditate. Om.

Time to put this sore body to bed. Can't wait to get warm!