After checking Heather’s, a dear friend, blogs today, I noticed she awarded me with an Arte y Pico award.  I was stunned, especially since I envy her and her blogging style and prowess. 

Heather and I have what I would consider a long history, if you count five years as long history.  Not only was she the person who got me in the business I am in today (thank you, thank you, thank you), she helped me go from fat-ass (really I am serious) to actually living in the healthy BMI range.  We first met when i walked into her step aerobics class back in early 2003.  I was huge, sitting around 215 lbs.  As the instructor I was expecting her to be distant with me since I was over-weight, but we had a good connection even from the beginning.  I think it was our similar sense’s of humor.  As the pounds dropped off, I kept going to class and we learned more and more about one another.  She and I share a strong bond on many levels and topics from work to day-to-day life.  We became close, and eventually came to work together in our full-time job life.  it was great to have a strong, driven, and confident female to interact with. 

In addition, Heather’s blog – Finding Atman – is a daily read for me.  It helps me to see into the mind of a working mother, what I am sure will be my title.  She has great insight, and always a common sense approach that we all need from time-to-time.  Needless to say, I would consider her a great friend.

Ok to get on with the Arte y Pico award…It comes with rules, see below:

  1. You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserving of this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribute to the blogging community, no matter what language.
  2. Each award has to have the name of the author and a link to his/her blog to be visited by everyone.
  3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that presented her/him with the award.
  4. The award winner and one who has given the prize have to show the link “Arte y Pico” blog so everyone will know the origin of this award.
  5. Show these rules.

Ok so now I have to hold up to my end of the deal.  I have to pick five blogs.  I am not sure if that includes Heather’s or not, but just assume it does and I will move-out from there. 

1.  U-Handblog– Lisa Lam is a sewing goddess when it comes to making handbags.  She makes her own patterns and shares many of them with us her fans.  She took the leap and opened her own sewing business, of which I commend her intestinal fortitude!  She has great style and inspiration.  From London-town, I award U-Handblog my first award. 

2.  Farmgirl Fare– Susan is a future farmer’s go-to for great bread recipes, stories of farm-life and great pictures.  I am attracted to her blog because of her representation of farm-life, which I lived to some extent growing up.  From Central Missouri her sheep, donkeys, dogs and bread, keep me coming back for more. 

3.  Craft Apple – Lindie serves up some more great sewing inspiration when it comes to bags and new patterns.  I like checking in to see what fabrics she is using and any new patterns she has available. 

4.  Savage Minds – This site, developed by multiple contributors really gets my head in the game for some tough problems at work.  They provide current, up-to-date information on global issues that truly shape the direction of my daily work.  It is a great asset, I get excellent gouge from them.  Savage Minds is a collective web log devoted to both bringing anthropology to a wider audience as well as providing an online forum for discussing the latest developments in the field.

5.  Apron Strings– Judy and I have just “connected” online and share many of the same interests – sewing, animals and the simple life.  She makes some fantastic bags.  The first thing that attracted me to her site was the last picture on this post!  HA!

Alrighty!  So there you go.  I hope everyone has a great holiday weekend.  Am celebrating my 29th birthday this weekend YAY!  And running around like a chicken with my head cut-off – my wedding is in 16 DAYS!!!!  HORRAY!!!


Ha!  That was fun at least making the list….

Last weekend was great, I got to see my pal Jess walk across the stage at Mary Washington University; I was able to cook a meal for my family for Mother’s Day; and I got absolutely nothing done around my own house.  What does that mean?  This weekend I am going to be the proverbial chicken with its head cut-off running around getting projects accomplished.  Here is a small sampling:

Friday – in no particular order

1. Drive home from work – which should only take 30 minutes, instead I will be sitting in traffic for at least an hour.  I kid you not.  It sucks. – DID IT

1.1.  Oh wait – don’t forget to pick up the new cell phones from the FedEx facility – another 15-20 minutes.  Cool phones though!.  I love Verizon Wireless. – DID IT

2. Stop at the grocery for – noodles, part skim ricotta cheese, mozarella, sauce and meat.  Guess what that is going to be???  (see #2.3) – Yep that too…

2.1.  Make the dinner

2.2.  Serve the dinner – You know it!

2.3. Clean up after making Lasagna- ugh!  It is the absolute worst dish to clean up after- does doing it Saturday count?

3.  Cut out the rest of the baby shower projects I am working on finishing before the 3 showers I am attending in the next 4 weeks!  YIKES!  I am loving doing the baby stuff by the way.  Another reason my Etsy shop is not full of cute items. – BBBPPTTTTTT Yea, about that – it goes down hill from here.

4.  Check on the veggie garden – I fear the raccoon from last year will be back any moment.  That rascal! – well ok that was easy

5.  Paint the Foyer and Hallway – color is Desert Fortress from Lowes – a nice warm brown despite the defensive name.  – HELL YEA

6.  Attempt to stay awake past 9:00 pm. – didn’t happen

Saturday – In order

1.  Clean the house so….. HOPEFULLY!!! Josh can mow the lawn.  – DID IT

2.  Rascally Raccoon watch. – HISSSSSSSSS You know it!

3.  Prepare for the most fabulous Little League Baseball Game.  GO KYLE!!! – No questions

4.  Go to a BBQ for about an hour – the first one of the day.– Sure did

5.  Go to Kyle’s game.  REMEMBER THE SUNSCREEN!!! – – Yikes!  almost forgot


6.  Go to a BBQ – the second one of the day.  I hope I haven’t melted from the game.  No time restraint on this activity, thank goodness. – MMMMM Moonshine 🙂 oh yea

7.  Go home – work on Baby projects.  They are SOOOO cute!!!  Will post pictures when finished. – HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Sunday – in no particular order

1.  Grocery Shop – ugh!  I hate it.  But like Blooms – No questions

2.  Put the new floor down in the Foyer and Hallway – the reason we painted!  Hardwood – can you hear the Angel’s singing? – We did it….well Josh did it

3.  pack for my trip – business- YAY out of the office time! – had to

4  Baby Projects- – I got on it, dog-gone-it

5  Cook Dinner – i haven’t planned what yet – maybe Leftover Lasagna. – Josh cooked, awww

6  You guessed it Baby Projects. – yep!!!!

Shew!  A full weekend, can’t wait to get started….and finished.   – Well sorta

Lots of folks around work were bragging about putting in their tomato plants this past weekend.  Remember it was beautiful….They inquired about my garden and if plants were in the ground.  I proudly said, I am waiting till a consistent soil temp of 60°.  They looked at me like I was behind the power curve, out of my mind, losing out.  I held strong, and this morning I was on top-of-the-world. 

Walking out my front door this morning I saw shimmery frost on the grass and cars.  As I sat in my car waiting for the windshield to defrost, I had a huge smile on my face.  My infant tomatoes were warm and toasty sitting by the kitchen window this morning. 

Josh and I ordered three yards of organic compost for the garden, and it was delivered at 5 yesterday evening.  What does that mean???  Get to work!

We managed to move all three yards before dark.  I am so glad daylight savings time is over.  We filled out new flower bed, topped off the back garden, and piled up one yard for the next garden we are building this weekend soon.

I love my garden.  The greatest therapy in the world.  I can’t wait to have veggies and pretty flowers this year. 


My new Flowerbed!

Fill’er Up!  The veggie garden, waiting for those Burpee Tomatoes!

The compost for the new garden…..ah the possibilities. 

The Burpee stork came through for me this weekend, and boy was I pleased to get this on my doorstep, this bright and beautiful weekend. 

I opened the box, not really knowing what to expect and I saw this: 

Probably a little hard to make out, but I opened the box to find four smaller boxes.  I thought, how quaint!  This is going to be like Russian Nesting Dolls.  I saw air pockets on the sides of the big box, but no soil remnants, or anything like that.  I was starting to wonder what kind of operation are they running anyway? 

So I slid out one of the “pods” as they called it:


Still!  No soil!  How can there be tomatoes in these so called pods, without any dirt.  I was a little worried.  I knew the box was extremely too large for seeds, so I know they got that part of my order right.  

On each of the pods, you have to take off a piece of tape, open it up…. to Voila! 

Look at those beautiful babies!  I couldn’t be more thrilled.

After opening up all the boxes, there are specific instructions you must follow to ensure your tomatoes are ready to go into the ground. 

1.  Don’t run out to your garden, like a crazed woman and dig holes with your bare hands, and put them in the ground.  They need a little TLC.

2.  Pull them gently, like the babies they are, out of their Burpee swaddling box.

3.  Water each plant with 1-2 oz. of lukewarm water.

3.  Pull out a baking sheet to place your tomato plant infants in.  So the 1-2 oz of lukewarm water doesn’t spill all over the place!

4.  Water each plant with 1-2 oz. of lukewarm water, with the plants sitting in the baking sheet.  (see step 3)

5.  Keep the infants out of direct sunlight for 24-48 hours, so they may regain their strength.  Remember they had a long hard journey from the Burpee Stork. 

6.  Once they look hearty enough and your soil temp is just right (above 60° F), dig them each a nice deep hole.  Make sure you go as deep as you can, only about 2 – 3″ of the tomato has to stick out of the soil.  It will make for a stronger root system!  Some folks, including myself put 3 – 4 egg shells in the hole for extra calcium!  Great for the roots and fruit later on. 

7.  Mulch with straw (not Hay).

8.  Water, water everywhere!

9.  Tomatoes are on their way. 

So – Here mine sit in the kitchen window, waiting for that special 60°F (stable) condition.  Are they not the cutest babies you ever saw?  

Around about July 4, I will be enjoying those deliciious fruits (please not in the Jonathan Swift, Modest Proposal way) on sandwiches, salads, sauces and salsas.  Yummy!


*Update* – The Stork has landed

Two days ago I just happen to lock myself out of my house, Yikes! and no one was home or even close to being home so I could be let back in.  After calling the locksmith, all I could do was just sit around and wait.  Luckily, I wasn’t all dressed up so I could find something in the yard to do.  While waiting for Dani (pronounced Daaaani with a Latino accent) I started prepping my garden for the summer vegetable season.  I raked the leaves and pine needles out the raised garden Josh built for me last year….and it flourished by the way…..


Anywho…..Today I ordered my 8 Mater (tomato) plants from Burpee, the best plant and seed provider.  It is always exciting to think of the possibilities of those great tasting, organic vegetables coming straight out of your own backyard.  Yum!  There is nothing like a tomato sandwich. 

When they arrive, in 6 business days, in the ground they will go with love, care and hope. 

 Let’s just hope the raccoons stay away this year, so Josh doesn’t have to “mark his territory”.