Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Been a bit scattered

Sorry for the posting delay. We have been dealing with conflicting septic reports and deciding what is our next step. Our guys says the seepage pit needs remediation, their guy says there are absorption problems, but there is no issue. Yeah right. If anyone ever says buying a house is easy, they are LYING! It is hell and it sucks, but once I am gardening, it will be worth it. Then again, if I am not gardening by July I may be a bit unruly so forgive me now.
Because I am a little verklempt, I have decided to post some fabulous goodies. why should my stress be yours??

I recently read an Amish romance called The Postcard. Yeah, you read that right. There is no hanky panky and nothing lustful and rude, but that was what was great. It was refreshing. Sort of unrequited, but still interesting.

Ok, awesome art for as little as $20.00 You cannot beat that with a bat!
Mmmmm, a nice, decadent dessert: Dutch Baby Pancake
What a lovely place to spend the day: North Carolina Botanical Gardens
Cook's Garden is a catalog that makes me want to garden every day of the year.
I adore stationery and this looks like a great place to indulge.
Bowling Alone: seems like a very insightful read.
Maybe we can buy land and build a cottage if this house fall through.

That is all for now my lovelies, ta ta!


Sunday, April 19, 2009

A quick post

So I hope everyone had a choice weekend. We certainly did. Saturday, we helped a friend plant at his country home and then Sunday, we went to Jazz Mass and had brunch afterwards. All in all a very nice way to spend our days with such beautiful weather. I also got my Artisan Bread book from the library and I cannot wait to start using it. I ordered a baking stone and a 5qt plastic container for the dough from King Arthur Flour. I just have to run up to Crate and Barrel with our gift certificate to get the oven thermometer and we will be good to go. I am actually looking forward to getting bread making under my belt. A worthy challenge and it will be a yummy one when all said and done too. Once I start, I will post photos of my achievements so you can join in on its baked goodness :).
I am also hoping to get some writing done this week on both stories I have been working on. Writing benders are fun, but staying up to 4am does not always make the next day easy. I look forward to visiting my Hospice patient and, fingers crossed, get the septic situation all straightened out so we can finalize the house and I can begin to plan my garden. Yeah!

And now, the links:
A great writers co-op blog in re: to all things frugal and green.
I love trivia: here are 10 famous folks who were home schooled.
Proof you do not need a McMansion. Check out LittleDiggs
Peculiar Beauty is all about the glamour indeed.
We all need Good Math.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Septic Inspections are fun!

Ahh the joys of becoming a home owner.
So, we had the septic inspection today, our seepage pit is backing up into the septic tank, there is way too much liquid so it needs to be remediated. Our lawyer has to find out if they sellers have any money at all to do the fix themselves OR they can give us concession. It is at least a $10K repair job. Oddly enough, the hubster and I are eerily calm about the whole thing. No reason to get ourselves in a tizzy until we see what the sellers say. We figure they are going to have a stroke when they got the news, yes they pumped it every year, but, literally, shit happens, so I will keep you posted.

As for my next move career choice wise, it has only been a day since my rejection online, today I got the letter. Good times. I am still toying with trying to get back into college and get my Bachelor Degree. I think I need a few days to still sit with it and see what path feels right. It certainly will not happen overnight, but something will come.

Enough self pity crap, here are some choice links:

I really, really want to eat here someday: Blue Hill Farm
Why I wish I had money. So I could spend it at this art gallery in NYC: Julie:Artisan's Gallery
AMAZING jewelry by 2 designers for those that dare to wear art Symbiotique

Have a choice evening!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Yes, that is right, Rutgers, denied admitting me!! Back in the day, Rutgers had no cache, now, it does, it has one of the top Public Health schools in the nation. Sadly, I will not be seeing that school since I got denied by the School of Arts and Sciences, which I would have needed to attend to get all my sciences and other prerequisites set. Oh well. I was a crappy student back in the day, but much time has passed and I was hoping with my certified oncology massage training and clinic that would have given me an edge. Guess not kids. So remember, if you are a bad student 10, 20, 30 years ago, it will most likely, still bite you in the ass.
I do realize I am competing for jobs with laid off CEO's, nurses, teachers, everyone. The same stands true for state schools they were saying last week on the news. This of course makes me a little sad and anxious, but I must dust myself off and figure out a plan B. Do I go into Allied Health? Do I go back to the Arts? Do I have 16 kids and become a Duggar? Just joking on that last one there.
Life does hand us odd cards here and there and this one is my favorite by far. A challenge to my sensibilities actually. It does hit the ego slightly, but only slightly. I think I would have preferred being rejected by Harvard or Johns Hopkins, because I would expect that. Not that Rutgers telling me no is any less humiliating, well, only slightly less. hee hee
When I figure out what my next plan of action is you will all know. For now, I am going to wallow in my rejection notice and then embrace this Dale Carnegie quote:
“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.”

Miss Fifi

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Health Care Reform

We owe it to ourselves to keep abreast of what is going on in health care. Yeah for some of you, you think it is boring, but you should know what is truly being done and said by the folks who run our hospitals, health care plans, charities and home health care.
Yesterday, people from small businesses, Merck & Co, Medco Health Solutions, Easter Seals, Tenet Health Care, Family Voices and many more sat around for 2 hours discussing with the Counselor to the President and Director of the White House Office of Health Reform Nancy-Ann DeParle, what they would like to see happen in health care reform. It was incredibly fascinating, enlightening and informative. There was a voice present for every single person and every issue. Discussions moved from special needs, end of life/hospice, incentive plans for employees and doctors, controlling costs, generic drugs, lack of hospitals, electronic medical records, etc.
I have attached the White House briefing AND the 2 hour video. I urge you to read the brief and if you can, watch a little of the video to see what is really being done and said since our local news outlets report so half-assed on this issue. I am ashamed that this was not a lead story yesterday because it is important that we as American understand what is broken in the system and what is being suggested to try and fix it.

CSPAN - Health Policy

White House brief on Health Care Reform

Healthreform.gov - forum discussions where your voice can be heard. They actually mentioned this during the meeting yesterday

Monday, April 6, 2009

Must get well, must write

My hubster got sick Thursday and I got it last night. The perks of marriage is you get to pass illnesses. Of course when you have kids it is a festival of germs all the time, so due to the lack of little ones, we have avoided those scenarios.
For today I laid low. This usually does me best. Take one day and do nothing but lay like a slug and watch movies. Today's double bill was The Hours and Mansfield Park. Enjoyable and suitable for the dreary rainy day.
I probably encouraged the little bacterium on Saturday because I started writing around say, 11pm or so and stayed up until 4am. A damn good writing bender. Since the American Zoetrope contest, I have not really sat down and wrote anything substantial. Sure I have a notebook filled with outlines and scene ideas, but I had not tried to start organizing them until Saturday. Inexplicably, I sat down and just wanted to type. The interesting thing most folks do not know is my dad wrote. The sad thing is, as far as I know, he never tried to get anything published. I think that is a shame. Perhaps it is my age, but I am not afraid of being told "no thanks", "next time", etc. because the more I work at it, the better my writing can get. The other interesting thing, well to me at least, is it is really all I want to do right now. Creating something, taking the time to get it out of my head and putting it to "paper" for others to read. A mad rush and I like it. Writing teaches you patience. You may have the whole story finished in your head, but you release it bit by bit so as not to ruin the batter. maybe one day I will post snippets of my stories on here, not sure. Not that confident yet! :)
Another freaky thing happened Saturday, I made myself a necklace. I have not picked up my jewelery tools since my business went belly up. I find I missed sitting there, contemplating what to do with these beads and jewels in front of me. A nice feeling to reconnect with.

For ha-ha's, allow me to share some of the songs I listened to, over and over, while I got into the writing zone. I myself, am always surprised by what inspires me.
Ida Corr & Fedde Le Grand
Camille Jones & Fedde Le Grand
One Republic
Dannii Minogue


Friday, April 3, 2009

Bread and Roses

BEHOLD MY BREAD! Yes, I, me, Miss Fifi, baked those fabulous 2 loaves. It was my first attempt and dare I say, it came out pretty well. I will not lie though, the middle was still a touch doughy, but when we cut slices we just toasted them in the oven and all was well. Here is a tantalizing side view of my bread.

Bread making is one of the few things, that if you asked me a year or so ago, I would have declared I would never try it. Well, here I am in 2009 and I stand tall as I say I now bake. You are thinking to yourself, big deal, you bake, what is all the hoopla? Well, since I have been unemployed, I have become a bit of a 50's style housewife connoisseur, sans the martinis. Though I may want to find a way to work those in. Actually, it all came down to me wanting to challenge myself and try thing I have never tried in terms of knitting a complicated pattern or baking. By going to the library, knitting, emailing, cooking and baking, reading blogs, posting on a blog, attempting a foreign language, etc I prevent myself from going stir crazy or falling into self pity mode. There certainly are days I get miffed because I cannot even land a part time receptionist or administrative assistant gig. My plight is hardly newsworthy as there are others in a real bad way so I am incredibly grateful for everything I have and for everyone I know. Now, back to the bread.
The recipe I used is for French Bread. Now I know what I made is not french bread, but my dough was all over the place so I grabbed 2 bread pans and voila! You see my end result. Even though dough took over my kitchen counter like the Smog Monster in Godzilla, it all worked out okay. The good news is my friend, Sara, has turned me onto a book, Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. You all know I ordered it at my library because this is just too wonderful. You can make bagels, donuts, brioche, all from this one mother loaf....blissful!! As much as I enjoyed making the loaves above, more than once I thought the dough was not going to rise or survive my kneading. So, once I get that 5 minutes a day book, HA! Bread Bonanza in Mama's house!!

Roses for me is all the women out there in blog land. Their backgrounds and opinions are as varied as the rainbow. Stay at Home Moms, Christian women, Jewish women, Retro gals, Artists, etc. Their posts bring out a feeling of sisterhood for me and I enjoy reading them as much as I can. Now then, Retro is the word du jour so enjoy these blogs my lovelies.

Terrific blog about beauty trends of the past. I am ready for my close up Mr DeMille!
Retro Sewing, dresses for my midday Martini!
Vintage Starlet - good time, great fashions
This young gal is attempting to live as a 50's housewife for a year!
I would wear a dress every day if I could, A Dress A Day is a dream come true!
Laduree - in Paris, famous for the macaroons. I will take any gift from here, even just a bag thank you very much.
Thriftiness is next to Godliness.

I am in cheesy mode here - Winger - Headed for a Heartbreak

Have a wonderful weekend!
Cheers, MissFifi

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Music, Music, Music

I have never looked as good as Ann Miller above, BUT she was a fabulous dancer and I loved to dance and danced we did at least 4 nights a week. God I miss Aldo's, Pipeline, Club USA, Limelight....those were the days.
Sitting here, revamping my resume and typing a cover letter, I decided to look up songs I have heard over the past few days to just blare them and let them wash over me. Music is very telling. I do not care if it is cheesy, romantic, hardcore or just plain dull, the songs we love, the lyrics we sing, the music that moves us, all define who we are in some ways. Without further fanfare, here are some new and old songs I am listening to. There will be surprises in some of my choices, but hey, that is what makes life interesting and why you all dig me.

Ben Harper and Relentless 7 - Shimmer and Shine
Best first line in a song ever: "It takes a hundred miles of love to heal a mile of pain"

Lily Allen - The Fear
Sarcasm beautifully done. The remix of the song rocks too.

Silversun Pickups - Panic Switch
My God does this give me hope about the state of music. Thanks LA!

IAMX - Kiss & Swallow
Grazie Daniela for introducing me to this!

Newsboys - In Wonder
Yes, it is Christian Rock, deal with it, they are fantastic.

Depeche Mode - Wrong
They have written some of the best music and lyrics over the decades. Keep 'em coming!

Dead Can Dance - The Host of Seraphim
I was privileged enough to see them perform. They are a true cult band with immense talent.

David Bowie - Jump They Say
He is brilliant. I wish I had an ounce of his artistic vision.

Cocteau Twins - Millimillenary
Favorite song of theirs. It belongs in a movie and I may need to write the scene for it.

Swans - Children of God
Sometimes experimental is a good thing. Haunting song.