Random thoughts...

color makes me happy.
this is one drawer from my 3 drawer plastic stash storage system (whoo, say that 3x fast). when i was purging last week, i realized i finally did exactly what i set out to do early into my knitting - only purchase yarn that makes me happy. that means, buy the colors i really love (and that doesn't include "safe" colors), even if i don't think i'll wear them, buy quality not quantity, buy luxury when i can because hey, we all need to treat ourselves every once in a while and last, but certainly not least, never apologize or feel guilty for having a passion and a wonderful stash.

the only thing missing from this group is my collection of chartreuse/golden rod yellows/golds. i do love me some jewel tones. and although i do wear quite the bit of black and charcoal gray (i am a "creative"... i'd rather put that energy into my work rather than figuring out what to wear! isn't that what folks say?) i don't want to be surrounded by drab colors. my craft bookshelf is painted a bright kelley green (you can see a bit of it in the background) and my fiber stash is equally as bright and happy. loves it!!!

weekly wrap-up/finished object(s) current projects
on the needles
still working on my shawl... unfortunately nothing to share yet :(

on the spinning wheel
still working on the singles for my husbands socks.
i have about .6 oz left from the 2nd bobbin, and one more ounce and some change to go, then ply time!

odds & ends
what i love this week
real simple magazine. actually, i love this magazine daily. it's my go to for quick and healthy 30-minute and less recipes, in addition to home decorating inspiration and home/life organization tips. it's a really great magazine and what i really enjoy is the breadth of topics covered. as i mentioned above there is the home stuff, but there is also women's empowerment articles, health/diet/exercise, beauty, finances, meditation, relationships, really a great magazine that you can sink your teeth into. i've subscribed to it since it's inception, and it's never gotten dull.

ok, so my point with bringing the magazine up... when it comes to eating, i try to steer clear of anything in packages (save for pasta noodles, bread, dairy... you get the point) for the most part. anything that i can make myself, i typically do. and yes it's commendable i guess, but it's also a lot of work and frankly, exhausting. so in comes real simple... i can flip the auto-pilot switch on and just follow very clean, simple and healthy recipes that are easy to add personalized touches to. one of the quick recipes i made this week was the chopped chicken salad:

the chopped chicken salad was "real simple" made with mayonnaise (or a substitute if you like), celery, scallions (i used shallots), lemon zest and lemon juice (i used 3x the amount, yum!), and seasoned to taste. seriously, real simple, but it would not have been on my radar at all. the recipe had the chicken salad served over watercress, but i served mine over spinach :D who the hell has watercress hanging around anyway?! i rounded my meal off with a little more protein (if not, i would be starving 20 minutes after eating!), warmed pita w/ a little butter (yum! i love bread), some grapes, a little knitting (back left), and some soda. damn... all that healthy ish really does make me crave a little naughty! and who can resist an ice cold squirt!?

anyway, so yeah... check out the magazine if you haven't already. you will thank me because it is wonderful and additionally, beautifully laid out. and don't let them have an article on paint.... lawd, have mercy! hahaaaa i find real simple to be a very positive, uplifting and inspirational magazine. just the kind of easy reading one should read, right? we are inundated with so much garbage on a daily basis... it's hard to filter it all out. and besides, who wants to read about heavy, depressing, energy-draining junk? we all have enough going on in our own personal lives! i always feel that what you put out into the world (or blogosphere) should be light, fun, informative if possible, and most of all positive and fun! a little bit of escapism. and like the old saying... if you don't have anything nice to say, then shut the front door!

i forgot to mention (as i digressed)... on the same page with the above recipe, there were actually 10 quick boneless chicken dishes. no thinking! there are also more elaborate recipes in the magazine (read that as usually more than 30 minutes), but there is already 1 martha stewart, and dammit, i'm just trying to eat!

another thing i am loving this week now that it's cooled off a little is the small bit of activity in the pseudo-garden. i know i fell off on this one, but i promise, things are still growing and doing their thing in the backyard. my yield so far has been 2 tomatoes (one of which was enjoyed by one of the local critters), 3 really nice-sized anaheim chilis and 6 lovely green bell peppers (one of which was enjoyed by a daring insect). the latter of the 2 were chopped up for a 4th of july barbeque and grilled with a little olive oil and lots of lemon, spices and shrimp. very delish.

 itty bitty chili! so cute :)

baby bells. there are a ton of these on my six plants, so here's to a nice-sized crop!

i'm having the most success with the bell peppers and the chilis, no surprise here. they are the kind of plants that as long as you put them in full sun for most of the day and give them a drink of water, they are usually alright. they love the heat. and california, heat we have! i love hearty, bullet-proof plants.

another tomato even managed to show up. yup, only one. i'm watching this one like a hawk because low and behold, just on the other side of the plant was this...

yeah, sure... some kind of fancy butterfly perhaps. yeah, not even. it's the infamous tomato hornworm. gnarly looking, right? and in typical caterpillar fashion, they wreak all kinds of havoc on plants, specifically tomatoes and peppers. notice how there are zero leaves where this little bugger is. remedy: the hubster snipped off this piece of the plant and moved the perp to a distant shrub. he more than likely got picked up by one of the resident birds. hope it enjoyed its time while it lasted. anyway... such is gardening.

and now onto a new segment i'd like to call: "dose of dog" (you already knew this was coming!).

so, this week, we had a sick pup in the house - mr. tinsley enjoyed a playing around with a plastic juice bottle a little too much, and more than likely ate a little bit of plastic while doing so. unlike riley, he doesn't seem to understand that the non-traditional toys aren't supposed to be eaten! they just get kicked around. so he spent the rest of the evening throwing up, and then continued throwing up throughout the wee hours of the morning and into the next day. he was not a happy camper.

first thing in the morning, i took him to the vet to make sure everything was ok with him. he really is a big ole sissy so he does have the tendency to overexaggerate and make things worse than they really are, but i still wanted to be doubly sure that he didn't consume something potentially damaging. and yes, i am a worry wort when it comes to the dogs. the dogs are both 4 and thankfully, i've gotten much better about this. can you imagine me 3 years ago when they were really getting into everything?! ugh. the vet at banfield (the vet office located in many petsmart facilities) proposed the most expensive thing possible of course, an x-ray, to the tune of $300. *sigh* damn.

i won't go off on a tirade here, although i really, really want to, but in so many words, i asked the assistant why they always propose the most expensive treatment first?! they don't really try to troubleshoot, but they jump straight into pathology mode. and that is expensive! tinsley is in perfect health (and the vet would've known this had he just pulled his past charts!), so i ended up just having him stay at the vets for observation (more than 6 hrs) for peace of mind... add $70 to the bill.

the vet called me later on in the afternoon to tell me tinsley was doing fine, resting comfortably and had no additional vomiting, but he still wanted to administer an anti-nausea injection. you already know my response... "um... if he's not throwing up anymore, why are you going to charge more money to inject him with something to prevent nausea/vomiting?" in my head, what i wanted to hear... the honest response should have been, "because it's another $30 that i can charge you!" but after a ridiculously long pause (guess i caught him off guard) he said, "preventative measure"... fair enough. ok, fine. add another $30 to the tab. the vet then tried to sell me on taking home a few cans of prescription food because with all the vomiting, tinsley's system needed something bland, gentle and easy to digest, to which i responded, yeah... i can make that at home. it's called white rice and boiled chicken. the vet really wanted me to choke him out, right? lol

in the meantime, riley and i hung out at home. we missed our mr. tinsley like crazy though. he really knows how to fill the empty spaces of the house with his silly grunts, warning growls to potential intruders and loud yawns. luckily, he came home around 6pm and got lots of love and rubs and hugs. he knew he was missed, and i could tell someone was loving up on him at the vets because he came back all smiley. the vet sent him home with medication, i guess it was some type of antibiotic... whatever it was, read that as another $15-20 added to the bill (bastards!), and my husband let the vet know we'd be making his food at home, so subtract $15. i guess when the d.h. asked the vet what ingredients were in the prescription food, the vet was completely stumped (again). when hubster looked at the ingredient list, it was totally indecipherable. so all in all we spent $100 for peace of mind, and saved $300. the things we do for our pets, right? mr. tinsley has been resting comfortably ever since and really enjoying eating rice and boiled chicken. they eat a really high quality diet anyway, but he loves himself some rice :D

but seriously... i don't have kids, my furries are my children, and i just can't resist these faces...

i just love them to bits-and-pieces and want them to be happy, loved more than they can handle and well taken care of because they bring me so much joy. and that has no price tag.

enjoy your weekend!
until next time...

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