Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Learn Something New Tuesday 7/26/11


1. Do you travel for work?  If so, do you travel far?
Nope, I don't have to travel and I am glad I don't. The most I have had to travel is down to Phoenix for various workshops or to Florence for the same thing.

2. How long have you been at your current job?  Do you plan on staying there for awhile?
I've been at the library for 5 years. I do plan on staying there for awhile - it is a great place.

3. Do you have a favorite movie that you could watch a zillion times and still not get tired of it?

Hmm... well, I rarely rewatch movies, so I'm not sure, but I know I can watch Wall-E, Moulin Rouge, and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure over and over. Oh, and for some reason I always catch 13 Going on 30 on TV, and it's a surprisingly rewatchable movie, too.

4. Do you have an all time favorite tv show? (Can be cancelled or still running)
Well right now it has to be Doctor Who. Scotty and I have been catching up on the new series and I just love it. In the past though, when I was a teenager, I was a big Star Trek, I Love Lucy, and X-Files fan.

5. What kind of cake would you like for your birthday?
A home-baked cake! Any kind of homemade cake, I love. I'm not a big fan of store cakes with the bland cake and artificial-tasting frosting. A big favorite of mine is chocolate cake with cherry icing.

6. Name three of your pet peeves
One - People who think it is okay to be rude to others because they are in a retail/service type position. It is not okay to be rude to anyone, ever. I don't care if you forget what they looked like the minute you walk out the door, at the very least, acknowledge them and be polite. (Yes, this one comes from work.)

Two - People who make up scientific facts or statistics. I get this a lot in comments on my hearing loss blog. People post comments anonymously and throw out completely random numbers and totally false information for no reason.

Three - People who discuss politics on Facebook. (In particular, the posts where they seem to think everyone they're friends with thinks the same way, so they can be as rude as they want.)

Monday, July 25, 2011

About my Pets: Sneakers the Cat

I thought some of my readers might be interested in more information about the pets I have, especially the exotic ones, so I figured they each deserve their own blog posts!


Sneakers' Lazy Day 2

Sneakers is a tuxedo (black and white) cat. He is probably the least exotic of my three pets but he holds his own! I love cats. Dogs, too, but I enjoy cats' ability to relax, stretch out, and enjoy life quietly.


All about Sneakers: Sneakers is about 14 years old. He came to my grandma (Nana) in 1997 through a rescue organization at Petsmart or Petco. I was reading Beverly Cleary's Socks at the time, and given the kitten's white paws, I thought "Sneakers" was a great name for him.


In time, Sneakers found a home at my parents'. When they divorced, he lived with my mother, but he grew stressed out around her other cats. We took him in when we lived in our apartment. When we had to move back to my in-laws', he went back to my mother's. Now that we have our own house, our little boomerang cat is back for good!

Cat in Bookcase

Sneakers has a lot of personality and is very loving. He is very fluffy, so he looks fat. Most of it's just fur, but I won't deny, he's a heavy cat, very well-built with strong bones. He is very loving and affectionate, sometimes too affectionate. His favorite toy is his "mousies," those tiny soft mice you see in multi-packs at the store. He chases them around, carries them, licks them, and chews on them. He also loves treats, and likes to "beg" for them.

DITL 7: Begging

Sneakers is a very healthy cat for being 14. In fact, he pretty much has no health problems. He's such a great cat (when he's on his own in a household) - I hope that his health continues for many more years.

Friday, July 22, 2011

On Hearing Sparks: Easy, Crafty Storage for Small Items

Over on my blog about hearing loss, Hearing Sparks, today I have a craft that I think works for a lot of small items that can get lost in your purse, bag, or nightstand. It works especially well for my hearing aid batteries! Best of all you only need an empty Altoids tin and some adhesive felt! (The idea came from this blog post.)

Easy, Crafty Storage for Hearing Aids (Cover)

Check out the link to find out how to make it.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A House Survey

1. What kind of soap is in your bathtub right now?
I have Philosophy's "i'm dreaming of..." white cranberry soap, Bath & Body Works Japanese Cherry Blossom, and Burt's Bees Milk and Shea Butter soap. Along with Scotty's Old Spice soap. I like soap a lot. (Scotty's grandpa works for Philosophy, so we get a ton of it. I was shocked at the prices in the store last time I was dragged into Ulta. Crazy.)

2. Do you have any watermelon in your refrigerator?

3. Is there anything moldy in your refrigerator?
Yes. Some fruit from the housewarming party. Chris and Alicia brought a fruit salad and put some of it in Tupperware in the fridge, and I completely forgot about it...

4. Are there any dirty dishes in your sink?

5. What would you change about your living room?
All I would do at this point is paint it - I want something other than plain white and the texture of the paint already there is kind of yucky. Not sure when we will be doing that - it will take me forever to decide on color.

6. Are the dishes in your dishwasher clean or dirty?
Clean, I need to empty it out today.

7. Do you have a can of mushrooms in your pantry?
I'm pretty sure we do.

8. White or wheat bread?
Neither. Sourdough! It's all I can eat lately - white or even wheat seem too sweet for me.

9. What is on top of your refrigerator?
A waffle iron and a hand mixer.

10. What color is your sofa?
This color. Brownish, but it actually looks a little purpley in the right light. Hey, any votes on paint color? One of my high school friends just bought a house and painted most of her inside walls Benjamin Moore's Halo. I absolutely LOVE how it looks in her house, so it's tempting...

House Tour Update 6/5 Living Room

11. What color or design is on your shower curtain?
Master bath is clear with green bamboo stalks:

House Tour Update 6/5 Master Bath

Guest bath is white with brown and green branches and blue birds:

House Tour Update 6/5 Guest Bath

12. How many plants are in your home?
Three. One lucky bamboo in the living room, chocolate mint in the dining room and a succulent in the bathroom. I'm not good with plants, so the fact that I have 3 living plants in my house right now is amazing.

13. How many candles are in your home?
We have a ton of tea lights for some reason, plus a couple of decorative candles, and one Gold Canyon candle from a coworker's school fundraiser.

14. Is your bed made right now?
No, I rarely make the bed.

15. If you have a coffee pot, what color is it?

16. Electric or standard can opener?
Standard. I don't like the electric kind that much.

27. Comet or Soft Scrub?
Neither... right now I think I have store brand cleaners under the sink.

28. Is your closet organized?
Linen closet - yes. Hallway closet - yes. Master bedroom closet - for the most part yes, and it will be fully organized when we get a couple more of the Antonious closet system units from Ikea. Guest room/storage room closet - not really, it has a vague organization and isn't super messy, but it's not super organized. Den/office closet - nooo. Scotty's desk is in the closet at the moment (we took the doors off, and it's like a built in nook) and we all know his desk isn't organized :)

29. What color is the flashlight that you use the most?

30. What kinds of things are in your junk drawer?
Junk... no paper, but pretty much everything else.

31. Do you drink out of glass or plastic most of the time at home?

32. Do you have iced tea made in a pitcher right now?
Yes, I'm pretty sure Scotty has some made up.

33. If you have a garage, is it cluttered?
It looks cluttered now, but we have a system. :) One half is empty for Prudence, our car. The other half is boxes from the move to be unpacked. I have them in sections, for boxes that need to go to the attic (holiday decor), boxes of papers and magazines (for the office and filing cabinet), and then the rest kind of looks cluttered. Plus the GIANT server rack in the garage isn't helping things.

34. Curtains or blinds?
CURTAINS. Mostly. The house came with blinds, but we are replacing them slowly... I really prefer curtains, except for example in the office where we put up nice wooden blinds to block out more view from the street.

35. How many pillows do you sleep with?
Two, one soft and one firm.

36. Do you sleep with any lights on at night?

37. How many ceiling fans are in your home?
Four I believe.

38. How often do you vacuum?
Most of the house is wood or tile so I just need to vaccuum the bedrooms. The den gets vaccuumed weekly because the animals run around on the floor and it gets a lot of traffic - the guest room hardly ever - the bedroom every couple weeks or so when I notice it's dirty. I should vaccuum the bedroom more often; the carpet in there picks up everything.

39. Standard toothbrush or electric?
I have a normal one and Scotty has an electric one.

40. What color is your toothbrush?
Um... maybe... purple? Wow, I can't remember.

41. Do you have a welcome mat on your front porch?
Yes, all of the doors have a welcome mat. I love the one on the front porch actually, with a huge tree and the words "Welcome."

42. What is in your oven right now?
Oven racks.

43. Is your microwave clean or dirty?

44. Is there anything under your bed?
A plastic tub with some posters in it we haven't found homes for. Eventually I want to get more plastic tubs for winter clothes/sweaters/jackets to go into.

45. Chore you hate doing the most?
Filling the dishwasher. Luckily, Scotty does that part. I just empty it, though I dislike that, too. I hate the water that gets leftover in dishes even though it's clean.

46. What retro items are in your home?
I love retro stuff, especially retro stuff that does modern stuff. We have this media PC in our living room. (Not where it is in this picture, but you get the idea):

This (plus a few other antiques I have found) on our bookcase:

Argus Argoflex Vintage Camera

And this is Scotty's radio on his nightstand (sorry for the blurry/weird angle pic):

Cat on Radio

47. Do you have a seperate room that you use as an office?
Our 3rd bedroom is our office.

48. If you have a yard, who mows it?
We have a yard. But it doesn't have grass.

House Tour Update 6/5 Backyard

49. Is there anything on your kitchen floor right now?
The cat's food and water dishes.

50. How many mirrors are in your home?
One in the hallway, one in each bathroom - 3.

51. Do you have any hidden emergency money around your home?
No, I would forget about it.

52. What color are your walls?
They are all white.

53. Which rooms in your house have wallpaper?

54. Do you have a peephole in your front door?

55. Do you keep any kind of protection weapons in your home?
Haha. Um. Samurai swords (katana).


56. What does your home smell like right now?
Smells like my house... *shrug* Although the bedroom smells REALLY GOOD right now. I tried out Arm & Hammer's moist dryer sheets with my sheets on Monday and oh my gosh. Smells so good. And it made them so soft. I'm a believer.

57. Fave candle scent?
I don't really have one.

58. What kind of pickles (if any) are in your refrigerator right now?
Dill pickles freshly canned by Scotty's dad. I haven't tried one yet, but I am super curious.

59. Who are in the pictures you displayed?
We need to get more pictures up, but they are all of family, plus one of our wedding pictures.

60. What color is your favorite?

61. Do you have plenty of cabinet space in your kitchen?
Yep! Lots of nice deep cabinets for items.

62. Ever been on your roof?
Not yet.

62. Do you own a stereo?

63. How many tvs do you have?
Two, one in the bedroom, one in the living room.

64. How many house phones?
None, cellphones only.

65. Do you have a housekeeper?
Hah, no.

66. What style do you decorate in?
I'm not sure, I just pick out what I like. I think maybe I'm a little old fashioned but I like antiques and old stuff so much. I should probably add a few modern touches.

67. Do you like solid colors in furniture or prints?
Solid colors.

68. Is there a smoke detector in your home?
Yes, just one, which makes me kind of paranoid.

68. In case of fire, what are the items you would grab if you only could make one quick trip?
The animals. Depending on how quick, possibly my computer/hard drive.

69. Do you know how to work your electrical box?

70. What temperature in your home is most comfortable to you?
We keep it set at 78 which is perfect for me.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Learn Something New Tuesday 7/19/11

One nice thing I can already see about working my new schedule - I don't have to be at work till 9:15 so I can spend some time relaxing at home!

It's time for Learn Something New Tuesday!

1. When is the last time you read the printed paper?
Probably last week at work sometime when I was reading one of the local papers we put out. The sections of the paper where the public contribute are always amusing... okay, mostly hilarious.

2. Who would you rather go on a date with, George Clooney, Brad Pitt or David Beckham?
Wow... I actually am not really attracted to any of those guys BUT I guess I'll go with George Clooney because he seems like he has a lot of interesting stories to tell.

3. Do you like to cook? Do you have a specialty dish?
I really enjoy cooking, yes. Although I hate it when I end up using a lot of dishes! My favorite dish to make is my pasta salad.

4. If you could vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Right now I would probably choose Ireland.

5. If you’re married, do you see yourself married to the same person for the rest of your life? If you’re not married, do you see yourself getting married?
I am married and I definitely see myself with Scotty for the rest of my life. It is crazy to think about not being married to him... we get along so well, like the same things and (often) have the same thought processes even if we disagree. Basically he totally makes sense to me, in a way other people don't. And being with him feels very comfortable.

6. What is your favorite time of the day?
Currently it is the evening/nighttime before bed. Scotty and I have been having dinner, going on our walk (not as often as we'd like but we're getting back into this routine), and then watching Doctor Who and Neon Genesis Evangelion. Actually we just finished up Evangelion last night. I still don't know what to think about THAT ending...

Monday, July 18, 2011

About My Pets: Genbu the Leopard Tortoise

I thought some of my readers might be interested in more information about the pets I have, especially the exotic ones, so I figured they each deserve their own blog posts!


Genbu exploring

Genbu is a young leopard tortoise. We bought Genbu on April 8, 2011, and according to the pet store, he was about a year old when we got him.

A little bit of care information: Leopard tortoises are from Africa. They live about 100 years, and reach about 18 inches in size, up to 24 inches. Leopard tortoises do best outside when they are big enough; in the meantime they can be housed indoors in a variety of situations. Just like bearded dragons, they require a large amount of space, a basking spot, and UV light bulb. They eat hay and manufactured tortoise food plus a variety of other greens, vegetables, and fruit (although food beyond hay and greens should be on a "treat" basis). They do not eat proteins like insects or animals. Their rate of growth, and whether or not their shell stays smooth, depends on the quality of their diet. (We're hoping Genbu's shell smooths out somewhat as he grows.)

Genbu - April 19, 2011

All about Genbu: Genbu is still little, only about 3'' - 4'' long. He loves anything sweet, so we know any fruit will be a treat for him. Right now he is in a cage intended for a rabbit or guinea pig. This type of cage allows for better ventilation than an aquarium or reptile tank since tortoises are so low to the ground. Once he is big enough to be outside, we will move him to our backyard.

Note: I am very cautious with Genbu and Loki together. Animals can be unpredictable... I always advise caution when putting two together :)

Genbu has a lot of personality and is very stubborn. He looks like a grumpy old man, but he's definitely enthusiastic about a lot of things (namely, good food and warm baths).

Genbu the Leopard Tortoise Eating 2

I am very excited to see how he grows up.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Learn Something New Tuesday 7/12/11

This is my last week of working a normal schedule at work. Next week I start 4/10s working Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday. Cross your fingers this schedule works out for me! I really hope it does.

Now here is Learn Something New Tuesday.

1. Where is the last place you went on vacation?
Oh man... I have not been on vacation in so long. I guess it would be the campout back in 2010. My father-in-law organizes this campout every year for Geocaching enthusiasts, in the desert. It hasn't happened yet this year, but last year it was in March. I guess you would call it a staycation because it's only about an hour or two away.


2. What was yesterdays high temperature where you live?
I don't know how to see previous temps so I'll go with what Jennifer said and say 108. I don't mind the high temps, it's just the humidity I dislike.

3. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
If you have chocolate and marshmallows (Rocky Road or any version thereof), I'll be there. Phish Food? I'll love you forever if you share some of that.

4. If you won the lottery, what would be your first purchase?
I would first pay off our student loans and the house, but, my first actual new purchase would probably be a new car/truck/vehicle of some type for myself.

5. Do you like cold or hot weather?

I like it right in the middle.

6. How long was your shortest relationship?
I actually never had a relationship before I met my husband... we were high school sweethearts. Haha.

Monday, July 11, 2011

About My Pets: Loki the Bearded Dragon

I thought some of my readers might be interested in more information about the pets I have, especially the exotic ones, so I figured they each deserve their own blog posts!


Loki 5

Loki is a bearded dragon, known to enthusiasts as a "beardie." Beardies are lizards from Australia, and are some of the friendliest reptiles you can own as pets. They become acclimated easily to humans, they're a good size without being overly large, and they very rarely bite or act aggressive.

A little bit of care information: Bearded dragons require an enclosure of at least 40 gallons when fully grown, and they prefer more space than that. They like horizontal space, space to run around, more so than they enjoy vertical space to climb up. They need a basking spot, UV light, water (usually in the form of baths, as they won't often drink standing water), and a diet of protein (crickets, worms, roaches, and the extremely occasional pinkie mouse), and greens/veggies. They can't be housed together except as small babies, so plan on multiple enclosures if you buy more than one. I have found Bearded Dragon.org to be a great resource for all of my beardie questions; definitely do your research before taking responsibility for one of these beautiful animals.

All about Loki: I bought Loki from Petsmart on June 13, 2010. I'd estimate she was probably 4-8 weeks old at the time, making her a little over a year at the time of this blog post. I had just lost the first baby bearded dragon I bought, also named Loki. He must have been sick when we took him home, as he died the day after we brought him home. I was sad, but in her tank, Loki cheered me up. She was absolutely tiny but acting like she was several times her size, "glass dancing" against the side of her cage.

Loki - June 2010

She grew very quickly over the past year. She seems to be around her adult size now, between 17 and 18 inches long. I have been most impressed just by her personality. She is very laid-back and easy-going, although like many beardies she gets a little moody when she is shedding (how would you like to deal with your skin falling off and still smile?).

Loki - July 2010

Loki is a "normal" beardie, meaning she has typical colors of a natural/normal bearded dragon, but there are many people breeding exotic colors. I like Loki just as she is, though. She has very pretty tan, yellow, and purple markings.

Loki - October 2010

We have taken Loki to the vet a few times since buying her: once for a normal checkup and then to see if she had a parasite infection, which she did. It's important to make sure you have a good exotic animal vet if you need one for your exotic pet. We go to the Arizona Exotic Animal Hospital, which is excellent. In fact, they helped us out a lot simply by figuring out that Loki is a girl! It can be hard to determine the gender of bearded dragons before they hit maturity.

It's really fun to hang around with Loki. She's a big personality in a tiny scaled body!

Loki 2

Friday, July 8, 2011

A Breath of Fresh Air

I met somebody today who really brightened up my day. A library patron, just before I was due to go home. I was only at work for a half day today due to coming in during the holiday weekend to empty the bookdrops. She asked for my help with a couple things, and then she told me, "You're so nice! You're just so nice."

Her attitude was SO refreshing. I deal with a lot of people every day, people who run the gamut to very friendly like her, to downright angry and mean. I have come to see that a lot of people view coming to the library like waging some kind of battle. They don't understand the system of fines, how to use the computers, how books are organized, et cetera, so they see everything about the library as a challenge, and that includes staff. I feel bad for these people because a little understanding goes a long way in a library setting. Since I listen to complaints, anger and frustration all day long, talking to someone like this lady is a breath of fresh air.

I have been trying to focus lately on being a fresh breath of air myself. I am shy, so I am not about to go around talking to people a whole lot, but there is a lot during daily interactions that can be improved, without me thinking about it much. Eye contact, smiles, thank you, hellos. The bagger at the grocery store today had a button that said to be patient, he is hearing impaired* and I signed "thank you" to him along with speaking it, after I saw that the cashier signed a bit to him, as well. His smile made me smile. There is a lot we can do to spread kindness. I just have to remind myself to do it, because if it makes me feel good I know it makes other people feel good.

Have a great day!

*I could use a button like that myself, although I might change the wording.

Repairing a Reptile Climbing Wall

My bearded dragon Loki is the proud owner of this Exo Terra Terrarium, which comes with a climbing wall on the back. Loki absolutely loves the wall, to the point that she had torn it to shreds and was ending up with styrofoam all over her and the terrarium. I decided to see if I could fix it.

I hope this helps anyone else who has a similar situation. It ended up being a very easy fix with a coat of spraypaint and some Mod Podge.

Here is the wall Before...

Reptile Climbing Wall Before

You can see the parts she's managed to shred. The nicer-looking part of the background, to the right of this picture, was towards the bottom where she didn't climb often.

Reptile Climbing Wall Comparison

Scotty spray painted the wall using Valspar stone spray paint. We had it left over from when we created the castle inside Loki's tank. We gave it a few days to dry and air out.

Reptile Climbing Wall Repainted

I painted over the wall with Mod Podge. I went pretty thick on it, mainly because I got bored. It still came out just fine. I am definitely a "glopper."

Loki's Wall, Dried

And here it is back in Loki's tank!

Loki's New Wall

The wall is not perfect, by any means. It still has the appearance of being roughed up and it looks like bits are going to fall off. However, it is very definitely sealed and is smooth when you run your finger over it.

We created the castle, linked above, in a similar way. It just involved cutting out the styrofoam ahead of time. We glued together the pieces of styrofoam using wood glue, went over it with the spray paint, and Mod Podged it. Next time I need to make something like this I will definitely create a tutorial for it.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Embrace the Camera: July 7th, 2011

It's Embrace the Camera day! Rules & link up at the anderson crew blog.

My husband & I got haircuts over the weekend. Scotty's aunt is a hairdresser, so we always go to her. I was definitely ready for some shorter hair! I love it now.


I love going to the part of the city where Tia Tekay works. It's really dangerous though - it's so close to my favorite bookstore, Bookman's. I could spend all day there and all of my money, easily. It's a wonderful place.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Learn Something New Tuesday 7/5/11

The past few days have been pretty crazy for me - including losing power almost all day Thursday and not getting it back till 4 am on Friday morning! (I live in Arizona, so not having a/c was pretty lousy.) On top of that, due to the wind, dust and rain, the city had to cancel the fireworks show yesterday evening. Oh, well! I'm ready for this week to be better. So here is Learn Something New Tuesday!

1. Did you follow the Casey Anthony trial?
No, not really. I heard a bit about it. I have to say I was really surprised by the verdict.

2. Do you keep up on Celebrity gossip, if so where do you get most of your information?
No, I don't really pay attention to that kind of thing... I think it is usually pretty boring.

3. What is your favorite thing to do on the 4th?

Last year I really enjoyed going to the middle school (next door to the high school, where the city shoots off fireworks). We had a great view of the fireworks and got to spend time with my brother and his friends. This year we did the same thing, but no fireworks. It was still fun though. 

4. Do others usually think you’re difficult to deal with?
No, I don't think so. People usually say I am too nice and I tend to bend over backwards to do things for people. Sometimes I have a hard time explaining myself or my train of thought, but it usually frustrates me more than the other person.

5. Is there a certain person who constantly stresses you out?

Yes. A few. But I am slowly learning not to let people have power over me.

6. Is there a friend you never get to see anymore?

Sure. But I am kind of a loner/introvert, anyway... I like my little circle of friends.