Sunday, November 24, 2013

Broken Hearted

Well, it's a few days before Thanksgiving, and I am thankful to be alive.  Sounds a little dramatic, huh?  But you see, around Halloween I started having these weird heart palpitations and became convinced there was something very seriously wrong with me, because that's just what the way my mind works.  I will make a long story short:  I am fine.  Some poking and prodding and being hooked up to machines has pretty much ruled out anything super serious, so that is good news.  Most likely it was all just stress.  So, I am changing my eating habits and making an exercise plan and taking steps to lower my level of stress.

Thank God we don't have an Elf on the Shelf!  I don't think my heart could take it.

One helpful thing is that our Girl Scout holiday service project is complete except for taking the packages to the post office, which will happen tomorrow.  It is a relief to have that done so early.  Our project last year was GREAT, but was really really overwhelming and it lasted right up to Christmas Break.  Plus, in the same month, we had a big Christmas party, went caroling, took food to the shelter, and marched in the parade.  Too much stuff.  We only have 2 more easy meetings before the break this year, plus a very small Christmas caroling outing (this time, we stand in one spot for 45 minutes instead of going all around a neighborhood for 90 minutes), so I don't have a lot of Brownie stress on my mind.

Also, my school volunteering responsibilities are much smaller this year.  

I am working on saying no to things and asking for help more often.  This is all good.

Another thing that has been helpful is doing fun stuff with my friends.  I think laughing must be good for the heart, because the night I was all hooked up to my crazy heart monitor machine, I went to a friend's house and laughed for about two hours straight with a bunch of people I like a lot, and my test results were great.

Last night, I went with a couple of friends to a painting class.  I have never painted anything in my life.  Above is my first ever attempt at doing so.  I very clearly did not inherit my dad's painting gene, but I had a good time with my friends.  See how cool we are?

We are going back to the studio eventually to work on adding some details that we didn't have time for during the class.  Even though it looks like something Daphne could do, I like my painting.  It makes me happy.

Saturday, I got to spend some time hanging out with Kev.  Even though most of that time was spent stuck in traffice and driving around trying to find a parking space at the ridiculous mall, it was fun.  That makes me happy, too.

Do you know what else makes me happy?  This butternut squash and apple soup that we made today.  Williams Sonoma does it again!  Their recipes never disappoint.

This package makes me happy.  Daphne brought it home from her Project Surprise sewing class.  I have no idea what's in it, but I can't wait to find out.  I love the wrapping.  Pom-poms are awesome.

Pomegranates make me happy, too.  They are delicious.  And good for the heart! 

One more thing that makes me happy is yarn.  I have been knitting like crazy lately.  It calms me down.

I did not knit this big awesome blanket above, but I want to.  I could BUY the big awesome blanket from Anthropologie, but it would cost me $798.00.  I could knit it for about $250.  I love Anthropologie, but sometimes they are ridiculous.  Who pays $798.00 for a blanket?  If you know someone, tell them I'll sell them the same blanket for $500.00.  Then, I could use the profit to buy more yarn to make more blankets to sell, and pretty soon I will have enough money in my jar to go dog-sledding with my family in the Maine back country in real snow for miles and miles.

In a few days, I get to see my parents, Jeff, Scout, Chief, and the good people of my extended family.  That makes me happiest of all.

When you saw this post title, you thought this would be a sad blog, didn't you?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Ernest Goes to Camp

This cozy little place was my home for 22 hours over the weekend.  We were cold and we were damp, but we had a blast.

This will be very Daphne-Centric...I always hesitate to post pictures of other people's kids on this blog.  But there are a couple on this post.  I couldn't resist.  Their identities are obscured by donuts or strange facial contortions, so it's OK!    Right?

Daphne was so excited when we arrived at camp.  She was in a cabin with two of her friends and two girls from an older troop.  They named themselves the Spectacular Spiders.  There were also Turquoise Turtles and (my favorite) Fluffy Unicorns.  I wish that Jill, Sheila, and I would have named OUR cabin team!!!  Why didn't we think of that?!  We could have made signs and everything.  Dangit.  Oh well, next time maybe.

Saturday night, we had a lovely warm camp fire.  There were tacos and s'mores and songs.  It was awesome.

 In the morning, the girls made biffy sniffers, as modeled above by Daphne.  The cotton ball is sprayed with something delightful, like lavender essential oil, and the girls wear them into the latrine for a more pleasant bathroom experience.

Then, the donuts were hung by the Cadette Scouts with care.  Breakfast began, and hilarity ensued.

I think the Brownie on the left up there had her eye on a second donut.

And, of course, I couldn't resist getting in on the act.  Thanks, Jill, for this very flattering photo!

The girls did one last hike before we packed up to leave.  Daphne was exHAUSted!  But, I practically had to drag her out of the camp.  She wanted to stay.  For like two more weeks.

Such a great weekend with great girls and moms.  I LOVE being a Girl Scout.  Um...leader, that is.  I have to admit, though, that I was happy to get home, eat food from a plate, and have a dry place to sit. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Catch Up Time

Halloween came and went with much excitement.  Daphne's "Sherlock Holt" costume was a hit.

Mimi and Papa enjoyed their visit.

Daphne got a TON of candy.

And we all went to the zoo.

I went to a sewing class and made this cute wine tote.  Have I already blogged about that?  It's been so long that I can't remember!

I knit this AWESOME Malabrigo Rasta yarn (above) into this cowl for Daphne's teacher (below).  Shh.  One Christmas gift down, many to go...

And my Mara shawl is coming along slowly but nicely.

The Girl Scouts have been busy with their holiday service project - adopting a Marine unit in Afghanistan for Christmas.  Daphne made this poster for the teacher's lounge, and I have heard there are quite a few items in the box.

The girls made a few cards and bookmarks to go in the package.

And Daphne made this rainbow loom "Hero Bracelet" for one of the guys in the unit.

The girls all painted their pinky nails blue and made a pinky promise to stop the mean.  This is part of a pretty cool national anti-bullying campaign called Mean Stinks.

Over the weekend, Daphne did some Ninja practice.  But promises she is a GOOD Ninja.

Fall is almost over.  It's cold today, and I got to wear knitted things which was fun.  There is a lot going on and I haven't been very bloggy, but I will pop on again soon - the girls are camping this weekend, so there are sure to be tales of adventure.