Saturday, December 3, 2011

Clarification / Saturday, December 3

At the new job, I am the only female that spends any measurable amount of time in the building.

Which made me think this sign on the bathroom door was overreaching.

Further, it was grammatically incorrect given the time spent in building ratio.

Don't worry.

I fixed it.

There we go.

All fixed.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

House Rules

As you may have noticed, since starting the new J-O-B, 365 isn't getting updated daily.

That is to say, I'm not updating.

It doesn't update on its own.

'Like how I tried to make it seem like it's the blogs onus, not mine?

OK, so here's the deal.

I'm going to blog when I can.

Which means 365 is more like 365 minus the days I don't blog.

I'll let you do the math.

This way, I won't be making up pretend pressure and you won't have high expectations.

Then again, maybe your expectations weren't that high anyway.


We'll get along just fine.


Bottom line.

My blog.

My rules.

Which means I change 'em when I want to.

Just like playing a board game with me, in my home.

House rules, baby.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Katie / Thursday, November 17

I fostered two little girls a few years ago.

Bella and Katie.

They're now in their "forever" home with a nice lady named Karen. (HI, KAREN!)

I stumbled across this shot and fell in love with her Miss Katie's face all over again.

Especially her perfect black eyeliner.

It's so Cleopatra.

Nostalgia, Circa 2004 / Wednesday, November 16

I found a stash of pictures I thought were lost forever. 

As I was combing through, I found this one.

Jackson was Mike's first true love.

Mike often referred to Jack as his, "brother." 

Those two did everything together.

Of course, at his size (21lbs of hot, black, furry love) Jack would often have to nap. 

This was his favorite place to do so. 

Now go on. 

Find your snuggle-buddy. 

It's good for you.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Cheat-Worthy / Monday, November 14

My friend Sarah is a genius.

And she's real purty, too.

And that never hurt anything.

Do I have a point here?

Not really, other than to tell you what I think of Sarah.

I lo-hove her.

I also love her story about Mustachio.

Which is why tonight I'm going to encourage you to go read the story here, on her blog.

Because she's a genius.

And real purty.

And I lo-hove her.

For a mustache picture you won't find here on the blog, like 365 on Facebook

The Day I Didn't Take A Photo / Sunday, November 14

<jazz hands>

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Smash Cake Baby / Friday, November 11

As you must know by now, I have one son.

The Boy RD.

His Majesty.

Monkey Pants.


My first and one true love, that boy is the center of my heart and universe.

He is, however, tall.

Too tall to snuggle.

Too tall to fall asleep on my chest.

Too tall to let me carry him around.

One of my best friends, Crystal, was kind enough to have three little boys so that I can enjoy those things.

Thoughtful, isn't she?

The littlest one is my Godson.

And his first birthday was Thursday.

And his Mama made him a smash cake.

Because she is a GENIUS.

We tried and tried to get a shot of Mom, Dad & Brandt all looking at the camera.

It sounded like a nice idea.

Good thing Dad was paying attention.

It never quite worked though.

Which was a good thing.

The shot just before this was both Mom & Dad looking up.

Brandt, however, was tipping the plate onto the floor.

That would be Megan's hand saving the plate's life. (HI, MEGAN!)

With Mom and Dad cleaning up the carnage, Gavin and Nolan took a moment to taste-test all of the frosting colors.

Naturally, there was present opening.

He was pretty excited about the wrapping paper.

This is when I scooped him up and ate him. 
The end. 

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Friday, November 11, 2011

Locked Out / Thursday, November 10

In case you've not heard, I got a job, man. 

Part-time office manager in the commercial cleaning industry. 

Note the use of the word of "industry." 

It's key. 

I pulled into work on this particular morning, parked and made my way to the front door.


Oh boy. 

I'm so new, I didn't even have a key. 

I did, however, have my camera. 

The morning looked like this. 

It felt pretty freakin' cold, though.

Like 30˚ freakin' cold. 

Now, at this point, you're probably assuming I had on a coat and gloves. 

I did not. 

I don't do that sort of thing until -30˚. 

You know why?

Because I'm from North Dakota, donchya know. 

Believe you me, 30˚ above feels delightful. 

Brisk, even. 

And in 30˚ above, I noticed there's still some green in the grass. 

So now you're wondering why I didn't just get back in my nice, warm vehicle. 

That would be because for the first time in a week, I really took a look around. 

In an industrial park. 

There was texture and interesting stuff everywhere. 

In discarded carpet pads, for example. 

 Or haphazardly strewn hose.

Full disclosure: that hose is not ours.

Sam (HI, SAM!) would probably have a stroke if he saw hose or extension cords improperly coiled. 

Don't worry, I'd visit him in the hospital. 

Mostly because he brings me doughnuts. 

I'd have to make sure the goodwill kept up while he was out sick. 

I'm not sure why that got so dark so fast.

Must be daylight savings.


Look at that rust. 

Is it a pallet, or an outdoor bookshelf? 


I played "walk the plank" while I waited.


Meet Plank.

(Points if you get the "Plank" reference.)

Pole dancing, anyone?

Just when I was considering taking a spin, Justin showed up. 


Guess what? 

The next day, I got a key. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

PPBBBBLLLLTTTTTT! / Wednesday, November 9

Essentially, Amos is telling me to suck it. 

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Monday, November 7, 2011

What Amos Done Did / Monday, September 7

Look closely. 

At right about the middle of the shot.

See those?


As it turns out, I knew what the problem was.

The day before, I high-tailed it outta here like my tail was on fire.

In that frenzied state, I left a water glass on the table.

Two ounces of H2O.

I may as well have left out pureed catnip.

Amos found it.

And turned it over.

And it sat for over 24 hours.


Recalling how Lee saved my flashdrive, I took action.

By dumping a shiz-ton of uncooked rice on the lumps. 

Then I remembered what a curious little jerkwad Amos is. 

And slapped a roaster lid on it.

You know, cause if you like it, then ya shoulda put a lid on it.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Great Thing About Blogging / Sunday, November 6

The great thing about blogging is that you make your own rules.

This is especially handy when the sunlight you were going to utilize to shoot all of the stuff you have to shoot doesn't show up.

Welcome to winter, North Dakota!

While Greener assures me (much like Annie did) that the sun will in fact come out tomorrow .... or maybe she said next week .... I've decided to embrace the 3.6 hours of sunlight we have by napping.


It's Sunday.

Instead of posting a photo today, I'd like to offer you a story my mother passed down to me.

Ladies and gentleman (I'm sure there's at least one of you), I give you the story of Oonly Bonly, from my other, pre-camera blog.


His name was OB Lewis.

My mother said he was, in a word, magnificent. I pressed her for more, but she just sighs and says, "forty-six years does nothing for specific memories."

It was their senior year at South Mountain High School in Phoenix, Arizona.

I like to think OB was a go-getter. The kind of young man you want living next door to you, taking your daughter to the homecoming dance, and eventually marrying her. You'd put him to work at your car dealership, and he'd make you zillions of bucks--just because men trusted him, women were enamored of him and babies toddled to him with delight. A solid boy with honor, manners, great hair, a cleft chin and perfect teeth in his deep and brilliant gene pool -- the sort of fellow that makes Richie Cunningham seem like a ruffian.

The story goes like this:

OB was a family name. One passed on for generation upon proud generation in the Lewis family. One his parents lovingly passed on to honor those who came before him. One that stood for goodness, for purity, and, as it turns out, nothing.

Yup. That's right. The "O" stood for not a thing. It was simply an "O", next to a "B" that, likewise, stood for bupkus ... just as it had for generations.

I imagine OB was used to explaining this to legions of folks as he grew from a boy to a man. I envision him clad in crisp denim and a fresh sweater, varsity letter gleaming from his spotless letterman's jacket. (I have no idea if he was an athlete in reality; but he for SURE is in my head. The captain of every team he was on, in fact.)

I imagine the scene wherein he gives his perfect convertible Mustang a loving pat as he leaves her at the curb, entering the building that houses the Army recruiter's office, his jaw set--determined. It was 1964, there was a war on, and this young man was going to go serve. Just as his father and his father's father had, he would carry the name OB Lewis into battle and gladly fight for the very things his forefather's had fought for.

In my version, he approaches the desk, paperwork filled out and waits while an overworked clerk reads through the fields filled in ink, checking for missed information.

"What do the O and B stand for?" the clerks asks. He's seen hundreds upon hundreds of these kids and has yet to be impressed. He'd be there headed overseas, too, if it weren't for his own father's legacy: myopic eyes, flat feet and wheezing lungs only a pharmacist could love.

"Nothing, sir. It's just an O and a B," young Mr. Lewis would explain calmly.

And so the weary clerk makes a notation on OB's paperwork, adding a single word behind each letter. And when OB receives his dog tags mere days later, they read in a way even his father's and grandfather's tags did not.

They read, "Oonly Bonly Lewis".

OB came to school that day laughing his head off and showing everyone the tags. He even claimed the Army said they wouldn't fix them; that HE himself filled out the paperwork and that surely the boy knew his own name.

And so OB became Oonly Bonly for the term of his enlistment.

My mother told us this story as I was growing up, and it became one I retold often.

I asked Mom what happened to OB. She has no idea, but thinks maybe she saw his name on I take this as a good sign. That maybe those Oonly Bonly tags became a good luck talisman. That they brought him home safely and with his sense of humor intact.

Raise your coffee cups, kids:

To OB Lewis, who shows us that even if they call you a silly name, you remain who you are, and that even in the face of something terrifying, you can teach others that it's okay to laugh, too.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Now Those Are Some Clean Files / Wednesday, November 2

I found this in the kitchen. 

And was SUPER confused.

Why is there a blue thing in a parsley jar?

And why does is the parsley so pale and uniformly-shaped?  




But what's the blue thing? 

One blue Smurf buttock? 

Lone Halloween candy? 

Was Lee trying to kill me by hiding a bead I could choke on in my rice?

I couldn't wait any longer.

I had to spill the beans.

Er, the rice.

Then I remembered. 

Thank God for Facebook. 

If it weren't for the Book of Many Faces, I wouldn't have any record of what I did. 

The great news?

It still works!

Today's lesson?

Dump your soggy electronics in a bunch of rice and forget it's there.

It'll work wonders!

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go update my status.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Lee's Birthday / Tuesday, November 1

Today is Lee's birthday!

I'm not going to tell you how old he is.

I will, however, tell you that black smoke you see may have been started by the candles on his cake. 


Just kidding.

Actually, that smoke was coming from (we think) the ND side of the Red River of the North, just northwest of Perley.


As you've no doubt guessed by now, we went to Perley for dinner tonight.

Of course, we are required by mother-in-law law to refer to it as, "supper."


I didn't think so.

Lee worked on his pickle-spearing technique.

And Mike pondered the big issues.

It was a wonderful night.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Balls / Sunday, October 30

You're getting ready for Halloween.

How yesterday.

I mean, tomorrow.

I mean.

Hmmm .... I'm not sure what I mean.

I'm at 'Ria's store, helping set up the Holiday Preview.

Surrounded by my friends.

Working to make things spectacular.

It's gonna be a great Christmas.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Sometimes, It's Tough Bein' A Mama / Saturday, October 29


I miss my Boy RD.

This is a photo from two Christmas' ago.



I'm combing through old photos.

In a quiet house.

There may be a connection.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Martha, Sans Snooty / Friday, October 28


What can I say about her?

Oh, right. 

What I always say.

That she makes Martha Stewart look like a crack whore.


There is nothing this woman can't do. 

And she's always good at whatever she takes on.

She makes chandeliers from scratch. 

And she makes her own cutting table for her sewing room.

Yup. you heard me.

Out of a door. 

With a metal measuring tape for ... well, you know -- measuring.

And buttons.

Lots and lots of antique and vintage buttons.

And table legs, rescued from a table that otherwise didn't have a chance at happiness.

And then her husband created a quilt pattern with laminate flooring.

It's like a little slice of domestic heaven.

I could move in tomorrow.

Never mind that I can't sew a straight line to save my life.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Guest Blog: What They Did On Their Vacation / Thursday, October 27

Today's post comes to us from one of my favorite people, Jenna. Or, as I like to call her, J-Boo.  

'Boo is one of Crystal's sisters. (HI, CRYSTAL! I'M GLAD YOU'RE BACK!) (HI, 'BOO! I MISS YOU!) 

She is currently kickin' it Florida-style with another sister, Kaela. (HI, KAELA! XOXOXO) 

'Boo moved down to Kaela's place at the end of the last school year to establish her Sunshine State-residency with the intent of attending grad school down there. I should probably mention Kaela's married. His name is Dan. (HI, DAN!)

'Boo's gonna be an anthropologist. 

You know. 

All Indiana Jones-like. 


That's an archaeologist. 


I get it confused because 'Boo, when she French braids her long, luxurious Kardashian hair and wears the right bra, looks like Lara Freakin' Croft

You know. 

Tomb Raider, baby!

You see how a girl could get all muddled up. 

Where were we?

Oh, right. 


That's where Crystal stole took my boys last week. 

When I dropped them off against my better, self-centered judgement at the airport. 

All the way to Florida. 

My heart is barely mending.

(Don't cry for me, Argentina.)

The fun they had was astronomical. 

Alligators, a Miami Dolphins game, the beach, speed boatin', crab eatin' and a whole lot o' backyard pool swimmin' was had. 

The best part? 

Getting to spend time with family. 

But don't take my word for it. 

Take it away, 'Boo!

Two  months and 18 days.

Who knew two months and 18 days could feel like two years and 18 days.


As soon as we rounded the last bend at the airport, I could feel my soul jump out of my very core and as I  ran toward them.

Here I thought being in Florida was as hot as I’d get.

But Gavin’s “Hiiiiii Auntie Jennnna!” and each and every vigorous hug warmed my heart all over again.

You could say each day, hour, minute, moment was treasured.

Cliché I know…

But look…

There were some seriously exhilarating boat rides.

That led to lots of "CWAB," there has always got to be a little cwab.

Can't you just feel the excitement?

He exclaimed to the entire restaurant, "Oooh, this is all I've been thinkin' about!"

We also found a couple of beach babes while we were surfing the waves one day ...

Ooh, and this third beach babe.  

Ayy, look at that physique.

BUT, they were busy looking at the other chicks that day.

And by looking, I mean staring. 

I’d missed these folks, with every inch of my heart.

After all, they’re not just family. They’re soul-family.

The kind you’d choose to have around even if they weren’t blood.

Be sure to like 365 on Facebook for exclusive content. (There's another boat shot that defines awesome.)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Reaping What I Sow / Wednesday, October 26

Today is a big day. 

Today, I reap what I sowed.

Is that the proper tense to indicate previous sowage?

Last week, I got up early. 

Well, early for me.

And braved the cold.

(Wearing short sleeves and no coat, mind you.)

I'm from North Dakota.

This ain't cold.

And I saw some idiot, in 9am traffic, get pulled over.

I'm not saying they're an idiot for getting pulled over.

Hell, I get pulled over all the time.

They're an idiot for not putting on their blinker and going to the next parking lot or side street.

It is NEVER okay to endanger a police officer.

Don't be a dumb ass. 

Put on your blinker. 

Let them know you're complying. 

And get them the fuck out of traffic. 



I am, after all, a cop's kid.

So back to what I done sowed. 


I really don't know.


That's right. 

I let them leave me.

As you can see, only their mother was excited to get away from my constant attention.

Well, Nolan might have been a little psyched. 

Clearly, Gavin was heartbroken.

And the little, little one?


I never got a so much as a crack of a grin out of that kid.

He knew it would be seven whole days and was as heartbroken as I was.

BUT ....

I get to pick them up this morning.

I'm not sure who to hug first.

Or if I should maybe just take the baby and run like hell.

One thing is for sure, though.

I will not be taking my camera.

We need both arms to hug, you know.

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to the airport to make a claim.