Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Road Snacks

One of The Mister's friends is getting married soon, and we plan on attending.  This of course equals an impending road trip.

To Pennsylvannia.   Which from here, is 10+ hours of driving.

I'm not sure where our cut-off for "screw it, let's fly" is, but driving seemed easier in this case.
In my preparation for this epic journey, I stumbled upon this list of "definitive road trip snacks."  (sponsored by Jack Links Jerky, so were you surprised they ranked as #1?)  And it got me thinking - what would my list be?  

There's a double-edged sword here to think about.  The Mister and I both got a LOT better about the foods we eat in our own wedding preparation, and we've enjoyed the way we look and feel as a result of that (I catch myself staring at The Mister's butt quite a bit.  I don't think he minds.).  When we can, we try to maintain that "cleaner eating" because 1. Junk food doesn't taste as good as we remember anyway, and 2.  It's been so long since we had junk foods that mowing down on a doughnut will literally make us sick.

Still, every once in a while we will just say "whatever, this weekend's a freebie on food."  Which usually happens on travel weekends, because it's harder to control what food is available to you on those occasions anyway, and it's not worth the stress.

So what WOULD go on my list for road-trip snacks?  Hmm.  It's a trade off between the "kind of good for you" and the "nothing about this is a good idea but why not?"

Kind of Good For You:
Jerky.  Preferably jerky from a gas-station store that isn't a major brand like "Jack Links" (there goes my sponsorship), but from some small local business that's within 10 miles of that store and makes weird kinds of jerky like deer, bacon, duck, and once we found ostrich.

Nothing About This is a Good Idea:
Soft Serve.  Because at some point in the trip I will inevitably loose my mind to road hypnosis and start singing the Burger King 50 cents get it get it now song.  This wouldn't be horrible except we don't get just the 50 cents in a cone soft serve.  We get the consistency-of-cement shakes that mix in crunch bars, oreos, m&m's butterfingers, and probably, judging by it's trip through my digestion system once I eat it, straight-up thigh cellulose.  I HATE that this song is SO catchy.

Kind of Good For You:
Assorted nuts.  Stop laughing at that, you're not five.  Whatever, okay it's funny.  We love nuts.  Pfft hahaha.

Nothing About This is a Good Idea:
Candy Covered Nuts.  I can smell Cinnamon-Roasted Almonds from three miles away, and that scent drives me to discover the wrapped-in-a-paper-cone-source like a rabid badger.  This never ends well.   The Mister will get all bent out of shape as I flat REFUSE to share a single almond with him, and then about 20 minutes later I get a sugar high where I imitate this kid:
Except I'm strapped into the car via seat belt.  So it's really more like when David After Dentist starts screaming. 

Kind of Good For You:
Bottled Water.  Actually 100% good for you.  But not good for your wallet.  Why does a bottle of water cost more than...

Nothing About This is a Good Idea:
...The Double Big Gulp's 64 ounces of soda?  Either way we go here, we're going to end up stopping at every single rest-stop on the way for pee-breaks.  This drives me crazy, because in my head a long drive becomes exponentially longer if we stop even once, let alone once every 20 minutes.  But I stopped arguing this point, because The Mister is all too willing to offer to pee in an empty big-gulp cup.  

nope.  nope nope nope nope nope.

Kind of Good For You:
Fresh fruits of vegetables.  I list this as only kind of good for you, because the likely-hood of actually finding fresh fruit at a gas station is pretty much zero.  Those apples and bananas sitting in the basket by the front counter?  ...errrr no.

Nothing About This is a Good Idea:
Fritos and/or Bugles.  Which is usually what I pick when there are no fruits or veggies to be found which meet my strict health guidelines.  Because those chips are made from corn, and some people count corn as a vegetable, so that's totally legit, right?  And then I eat the whole bag in 15 minutes.  I'm not talking about those little single serving bags either.  I'm talking about the family-size bag that I convince the Mister is a good buy through my argument that "look, this'll last us both the whole trip!"  ...except then it's gone.  
But before then I can do this a whole bunch of times, so that's totally worth it, right?

What would be on your road-trip snack list?  
What do you do to "try and stay healthy?"  
And what are your "splurges?"
Tell me in the comments!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Sound the Alarm

Today's soundtrack, because why not.

We all use computers here.  Do you have custom noises for things on your computer?
Like when you get an e-mail, or it's time for a scheduled meeting, or your power-down and power up stuff?  When I worked at the college, I used to have the "Link Found Something Awesome" noise from the Legend of Zelda game as my e-mail notification and it made my heart happy every time I got a message spam from a prince in Nigeria who needed help transfering money.

As I discovered a few days ago, The Mister likes to personalize his computer too, apparently.*

The Mister set up an alarm, for whatever reason, on one of his various electronic devices scattered throughout the house, which sounds like a self-destruct siren.  It was sounding every 5 minutes and lasting just long enough that I could not find the true source.

After about an hour of that, one can get a little loopy.  
Here are some of the ways in which I so very reasonably coped with the never-ending sound:

  • Curling into a ball and shielding my face screaming; "She's Gonna Blow!"
  • Pointing over the edge of the couch to an imaginary man in the water to announce "Man Overboard!"
  • Staring at a squeaky bone in confusion, asking "What color wire do I cut?  The red or the green?  Oh God I'm color-blind!  What a world, what a world!"
  • Wailing "I'm too young to die!"
  • Asking Bubba to "Tell my wife I love her!"
  • Diving on top of the dog like I'm going to shield him from the blast
  • Telling Mac and Bubba "Save yourselves!" as I put them in the backyard and then pretend to have one of those really heroic 'I'm making the ultimate sacrifice for you' moments by putting my hand on the door's window and looking wistfully out at them while sinking to the floor/ my death.

*Not really.  The Mister had been signed into an aution-site on his computer, that was set to "alert" him if one of the items he was bidding on was being outbid, or was going for a good price, or something equally absurd that should not require a Chernobyl-style siren erupting from his laptop.  It also turns out there are a lot of movie cliches that include that stupid sound.  Did I miss one?  Let me know in the comments so that the next time The Mister decides he needs to leave his laptop in live e-bay mode while he's at work I have something to do.

What would you have done in this situation?
Have you ever launched a full-tilt search for a mystery alarm?
Tell me in the comments!

And while you're in the comments, I'm curious - Mac and I made this Shark-Sweatshirt for him the other day, and we both think it turned out SUPER cute (yes, those are little teeths on the hood).  Do you have a big dog (I do not have a little dog to help me fit it properly, so I'd only be able to make large dog size.)?  Would you buy something like this if I put it up in the Etsy Monster?  What would you pay for it?  I need to know!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Let's Play Catch Up for a Minute

Quick post today just to share information.  It'll be like back when I did Random Section Time, except there's no regular post on top of that.

That sounds fun, right?

In true tradition, a random picture will be starting us off.  Awwww.

1.  According to WebMD, I either have cancer, or carpal-tunnel syndrome in my right hand.  How very helpful.  I don't actually think it's either of those, but my thumb joint seems to have decided it will only do so much thumbing each day and then is starts to hurt in a way that is reminiscent of putting my hand in a car door and repeatedly slamming it.  So.  Cartoons/ comics.  I shall try to do them, but I have a few people currently paying me to do real arting, which takes precedence over blog comics. I'll try to make sure there are still funny things to look at here, even if I didn't make them.
I would be lying if I said Mac has never done this.

2.  Wanna see some of that art I'm arting?  AND/ OR, are you looking for a place in town that serves Sherman's Ice Cream (if you are not from the Southwest Michigan area, you should know that apparently Sherman's Ice Cream is the best ice cream that the powers that be ever allowed mere mortals to taste), then I humbly suggest Charlie's Sweet Treats.  (located on Westnedge in the same shopping center as Jac's Pizza and Choclatea) I did their logo work for them, and then I painted their front window (this maybe started the thumb retaliation of 2013), and I even re-painted a big cut out ice cream cone they found at a flea market that is now hung up in the store next to the menu (the menu I also did, but isn't really design-y as it is just a list of prices).  They've offered to let me show some of my sellable art there too, so I'll keep you posted on that. [click a pic to embiggen]
The start of window painting

The finish of the window painting... many hours later.

Before and After of the flea-market ice cream cone.

3.  I am no longer working at the large corporate petstore as a pet trainer.  Originally, I turned in my resignation there because The Mister and I were pretty positive we were moving.  That's on the back burner for now (horrible housing market), however by the time that developed I didn't really feel like I could go backsies on quitting.  But that's okay!  I've realized a few more things that I'm thankful for in this decision, so I'm happy it happened.
peace out, petstore.
I have weekends back (I was working EVERY weekend, even if it was a holiday), which means the two days a week that my husband is home I can hang out with him, or, you know, I can go on road trips with him now.  I can plan my schedule more than a week in advance (I've learned I'm not cut out for working retail).   And I got a new job.  I'm back to working at a school.  Doing office-type work like I was used to, on a regular schedule.  All good things.  Plus, I take with me all that knowledge I gained on how to train dogs, and proper puppy toys/ nutrition, so wins.  Wins all around.

4.  I won't be doing a blog post tomorrow as usual, but there WILL be a post on Thursday.  This past weekend, Mac competed in the Greek Fest belly-dancing competition for the SPCA, which I mentioned a few weeks ago.  He's still leaving glitter all over the house.  I should have video of that by Thursday.  I think it's safe to say that's worth the wait, right?
tiny teaser pic of us with our dancing mentor.

5.  I joined a Summer Adult Reading Program with the local library - every time I finish reading a book, I get one entry into a raffle for some fantabulous prize.  Though I technically qualify for the ADULT program, I chuckle a bit because I tend to read, and enjoy, the really quick YA type novels.  Whatever, they're good, y'all.  It's motivating me to keep my nose in a book even more than is usual for me, which might mean a semi-regular book report here on KpQuePasa.  Not so much today, but I do want to quickly mention two of the latest books I finished:

The Fault In Our Stars - John Green.  The story here follows a pair of teens who are afflicted/ have been afflicted with cancer.  I couldn't put it down, the story was addicting and I really love the snarky wit John uses to write his characters (Green has other books all cast with teens that have truthful and amusing banter/ narration).  The last 150 pages or so I ended up having to read in one go, because I couldn't possibly put it down and have to disconnect from it for a second.  This frustrated the Mister, who really just wanted to watch a movie or something, and I was all "BUT- AGUSTUS!"
The Fault In Our Stars - I SUPER recommend. 

The Bar Code Tattoo - Suzanne Weyn.  You know how books have a dedication page usually?  This one had a quote:  "Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way." - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.   And I... UGH.  
Context - the head professor of my grad program treated this book like the bible.  Which is not bad, because truly that quote is spot on - you can't choose what people do, or change them, you can only choose how YOU react to it.  And really, if you wanted to condense every inch of my coursework into one sentence, that would be. IT.  But I read that dedication page and I had pause, because I didn't want this book to be like a story about grad school.  
Know what?  It wasn't.  Because the author entirely, and I mean ENTIRELY missed the point of that quote.  Unfortunately, that was in a bad way.  
The entire story and how it was 'related to Frankl' made me cringe, the writing was choppy.  It really felt like it was written by a kid who was fantasizing this big-brother style futuristic world (which is more or less what the book is about), but who was too excited to get to the plot twists to actually flesh anything out in-between.  Major characters came and went in the span of 10 pages.  It made the book itself feel stupid to me.  And by stupid I mean unintelligent.  I was mad at it.  The last 150 pages or so I read in one go, not because it was good but because I was sick of reading it and I wanted to be able to just add it to my list for the library already.  Apparently English teachers have students read this one for class.  What a waste.  
The Bar Code Tattoo - there are way better books out there.  If you need a big brother future book, try these instead: The Giver or The Hunger Games Series.

Any good books you know of that I should check out this summer?  
Tell me in the comments!

See you Thursday!

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Cricket Opinions, via YouTube Clips.

I'd like to talk about crickets today.  (Did you go to college with me?  Not those crickets.  But that's a great story.  I'll get there one day when I can draw it out.  Did you not go to college with me?  Believe me, it's worth the wait.)

There is a cricket living in our house.  I suspect he is under the fridge, as that is the center of the house (we live in a tri-level, with the kitchen being the middle floor) and gives him the best angles and acoustics to have his music stylings reach every square inch of the home at an ear-splitting level.

He's done this at around 4AM the last two nights in a row now.  You know it's a loud cricket because it wakes The Mister and I both out of a sound sleep.  Whereupon we have continued our on-going discussion regarding our individual stances on crickets.  We differ greatly.

Quite bluntly, The Mister sees crickets as just any other bug, and thus demands swift death for our tiny serenader.

I... well I wish he would stop chirping, but I kinda think crickets have luck in them.  Killing a cricket brings you bad luck.  And guys.  GUYS.  I have killed enough crickets to last a dozen life-times (I promise I will tell that college story sooner rather than later), and thus I'd like to store up a little good luck by granting any remaining crickets in my life a death-row pardon.

Mulan's G-ma knew what was up.

Of course, our personal Cricket in Times Square (omigosh I loved that book as a kid) is granted a pardon by way of 4AM being too early in the morning for the Mister to want to move the fridge and 'HULK-SMASH' a poor, defenseless bug with a shoe.  Bubba can't reach under there either, or you know he'd have plucked every leg off that poor thing already.  

If only our Chester was as skilled as this Chester.

In any case, Good luck, Chester.  I hope you find a lady-cricket soon and stop dropping the base at the butt-crack of the morning.

What is your stance on Crickets?
Do you have any silly superstitions or lucky things in your life?
Tell me in the comments!

Monday, June 03, 2013

Introvert Test

I present to you, some definitive "signs that you are an introvert," which I devised while sitting in a bar on Friday night.  With captions under each panel, because it was drawn in a poorly lit bar, so, you know, legibility may be off.  Or you can click each photo to make them bigger on your screen.  Your choice.

How to tell if you are the PERFECTLY opposite introvert to your husband's SUPREME extroversion.
1: Go to a bar for a Kiss Tribute band event that your husband's organization is hosting.  while he hob nobs with everyone in sight, find a "quiet' corner to drawn the "interesting" people.

The aforementioned "interesting" people.  One of them might be my husband.  I'll let you figure out which one.

"Hi.  You're Beautiful.  Can I buy you a drink?"
"I... um... so... MARRIED."
"right.  nevermind."
"oh... thanks?"

2:  Get hit on for the first time in... well, a while, and completely forget how to function as a normal human being.  Probably greatly offend your suitor.

3:  Eat quick dinner in the car while waiting on husband.  Witness 100% legit drug-deal at the next car over.  Forget you're near real-live people this evening and comment WAY too loudly.

"woah, no way."
(yeah, that seriously happened.)

"you look lonely.  here, on the house."
"oh, I'm not lonely.  I'm here with my husband, I'm just a bit of an introvert."
4:  Even though you dissed the guy who hit on you, score a free drink anyway because the waitress PITIES you.

In related news, it was a pretty fun charity event toward Relay for Life, and a some items were even auctioned off in support of a local gal with Lymphoma.
There are Relay events going on country wide right now, it's that time of year.  Get out and support cancer research if you can!

And in related news to THAT:
You can click the picture to take you to the facebook event for info on when and where you can come out and watch Mac belly dance!

Are you an introvert or an extrovert?  
Any good stories that illustrate this really strongly? 
(i.e., I can tell you I'm an introvert because I can go to a rock concert with men dressed -and painted- like Kiss, and I'm most comfortable in that situation when I sit in a corner by myself and doodle.)  
Tell me in the comments!