Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Color and Pattern Trends

The Pantone Color Trends 

I have to say I am a little disappointed. The 2012-2014 color trends have a  few hue/ shade variations but nothing new or exciting. I guess this okay since our accessories, fashion and home decor will be safe for a few more seasons.

Here was the color trend for 2012

Here is the color trend for 2013

Here is the expected forecast for 2014

2012 was a crazy year of big bold graphics (color blocking), florals and sprinkle in a little tribal print for added kick. I have to say there wasn't very much that I was in love with in either pattern or color.  But then again I am not exactly on the cutting edge of fashion nor am I particularly stylish. I am lucky most days to have matching barrettes, pants that aren't wrinkled and shoes not chewed by one  (or all three) of my dogs. And most days in my house there is dog fur (aka tumble furs), nose prints and a dog (or three) lounging on my furniture (or tables).

Color Blocking

Spring 2012 Trend: Cheerful Color-Blocking




2013 is going to be an eclectic year of  stylized florals,  variations of abstract camouflage  deconstructed patterns, mixed prints and optical geometric's. Hmmm, that should make for interesting home decor...

2014 is futuristic. Great for modern and contemporary design/ decor
Trend Prediction   Spring/Summer 2014   Futuristic Nature trend forecasts

You can read more HERE about the upcoming trends.

Are you a trend setter, fashionista or design maven? Do you update your home and wardrobe with the latest must have items?

Sunday, November 25, 2012

O Christmas Tree--where art thou?

It seems the hubbs has a case of  forgetting stuff!

As in he has "misplaced" my Christmas topiary trees (One which is shown in the picture below). The ones I bought last year. The ones I carefully boxed and wrapped in plastic to protect from vermin. The ones I said please put this away for me.

Well he did and now he doesn't know where. It isn't like I have a big house or infinite storage How can he not find it? I am beginning to wonder if he accidentally threw them away.

Ok, deep breath. No problem, I have several trees I will find one that works. How hard can it be?
The 3 foot tree is missing the stand, this was put back in the tote until I can find a replacement stand or make one.
My 6 foot tree fell apart when I pulled it out if the storage tote.We had it about 14 years and it survived 4 dogs, 4 cats and 3 moves. In the trash bin it went.
The 7 foot tree had a family of mice--so it was also tossed in the trash.

3 trees and I don't have a single usable one!?

Off to Home Depot I went for a cheap-o tree.

5 ft. pre-lit and for $36 (on sale!). Good enough. I have to tell you at this point I was no longer in a festive mood. I was in a mood that involved words with the letter F....

Then I took a moment to center myself and realized it isn't about the stuff. It isn't the lights, decorations or even brightly wrapped presents that make Christmas. It is the feeling of joy and enjoying a few blissful moments with those you love. Christmas is in your heart.

I soon found myself smiling despite my crankiness. And I must admit this is the easiest tree I have ever assembled. Slide the little feet onto the stand, fold down  the lower branches, add the top piece, and fluff all the branches. No more guessing if the missing color coded tips are in the right section and no fighting with the lights.
So I won't have a tree in every room this year. It is ok!
Sometimes the simple things are the best!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Countin' down to Christmas

That's right...

 You only have this many days until Christmas!

What is your plan for Christmas? Do you make gifts? Or are you buying gifts?

Speaking of buying stuff...make a point to buy American made items!

This video is from last year but is wise advice for our current economic situation.

1 US made product=200,000 American jobs!

Christmas Made in America

So ask yourself...


Make a point to buy American and support your local businesses.

Here's is a list of good resources

. Click the master list tab to see categories of items Made in America
2012 Made in the USA Challenge

Americans Working

Made in USA products store

Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday Freakiness

Those two words scare me. I used to work in retail, the last time being ten years ago when I was in between jobs. 

What is is about Black Friday that turns otherwise mostly sane people into blood thirsty, stark raving mad lunatic shoppers?

How many of you braved the mass chaos?

Two of my sisters were shopping by 5pm yesterday and finished up at 6am this morning. Their excursion involved the mall, Home Depot and not one but two Walmarts. I think they  now have street cred. Especially since one of them slapped a dude for pushing. I.AM.NOT.JOKING!

I did venture the 3 miles to Home Depot at 5am for a couple of things for the hubbs and stopped by Kohls around 6am. By then the crowds were mostly gone. Those poor clerks look like they had  survived a blitzkrieg. 

I can see the next trend will be therapy groups for Black Friday survivors. I can just envision the groups huddled together, speaking in hushed tones.
A little red head with freckles says"Yeah I survived Kohls 2012." Then a burly dude with a grizzly beard who has been quietly stirring his coffee finally speaks up and says, " I was at Walmart 2012--wave 1. They came at me from every direction.  I was so overwhelmed. The pushing, shoving and screaming. I looked around panicking and realized I may not make it out of this. I hit my radio and told them to tell my wife and kids  love them. I am not ashamed to say I cried. I still can hear the shouting and smell the intermingled odors of sweat and desperation.  I just can't go back there man..." Now he has his head in hands and his body is wracked with sobs...The group sits in stunned  silence because they have met a true warrior...."
Ok, so I may have taken a little creative license there but from the overheard  snippets of conversation, the truth is not that far off. The point I am trying to make I hope if you were or are still out there, have some compassion for those retail workers. They have a tough job, little pay, reduced if any benefits and constantly dealing with the public. So you know it ain't pretty!

Make sure to say please, thank you, excuse me and mostly have nice day. Those poor people could use some kind words.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

A little thanksgiving humor to lighten the mood

Today was a somber occasion since my dad lost his fight against cancer yesterday. We took the day to reflect. Not just for my dad. But all those who are now gone from our lives. To be thankful for all the memories. To be thankful for the experience of  life--even of it doesn't turn out just so.
 To be thankful we have a a cozy little home to shelter us. To be  thankful for reliable transportation to take the hubbs to his job everyday. To be thankful we can afford food and don't know hunger. To be thankful for the love and companionship of family, friends, and our  beloved pets. 
To be thankful every single day because every day is a gift. To be thankful for love, to live, to learn and to do good.

No fancy meal needed for that!

We didn't have a traditional dinner today as the hubbs and I stayed home. 
We had Thanksgiving chili, haha 
We are going to have a holiday ham dinner tomorrow with our daughter and son-in-law. Sunday we will have traditional turkey (well deep fried) with the hubb's family.

So I hope y'all had a wonderful day! Even if it wasn't perfect, enjoy all the moments, make some memories, be joyous and be thankful!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

One more star in the sky

Today my Dad earned his wings. He left this realm at 1:45 pm.

The night sky burns a little brighter with the addition of new star.

My dad fought a valiant fight against Stage 4 lung cancer. Although it was really his entire body was riddled with cancer. He had an incredible will and strength. He did everything on his terms.

The irony is not lost on me as November is National Lung Cancer Awareness. Be thankful for your family this holiday season and hold them close.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Welcome to the Canine Prison

Remember when I told y'all about two of my dogs getting in a particularly bad (AND EXPENSIVE) scuffle?
 You know-- the nearly $1000 dollar vet bill after assessment, surgery and meds?  The bill that is going to take me months to pay off. 

So I have been working really hard to re-integrate the dogs because it exhausting and sometimes confusing to maintain the series of muzzles, gates and barriers. While this is not exactly the most attractive decor element, it is all about the safety of the dogs since I don't have very many visitors.

I thought things were going well. I had been able to remove the muzzles, had them in the same room with me using the gates as a temporary barrier and they were calm (not trying to kill each other).

We worked our way up to them being in the same room as me and no barriers. We kept them separate for feeding and for potty breaks. They were separated and secured when we left the house--just to be on the safe side!
Chubbs (left) and Tovah (right)
I thought they were friends again. We worked our way up to being in the yard together at the same time, no muzzles.
as of 11/09/12

They were even playing again, then on Sunday night, Tovah attacked Chubbs. She is the aggressor and we have no ideal why. Fortunately we had them pulled apart in under 30 seconds but she slipped her collar and attacked a second time and my hand and arm were bit (by Tovah) in the process. So now I am sporting some pretty nasty contusions and bruises. However during that 30 second scuffle Tovah ended with several lacerations including a chunk out of her paw pad. Nothing severe enough to require stitches. It was a bloody mess though. I have  been cleaning her wounds every day, have her on pain meds and antibiotics once again. 

Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. 

So I am back to gates, new muzzles and harnesses for both. She has an appointment for a full blood panel. I can only hope this is a chemical imbalance as opposed to a behavioral issue. She has been increasing in her aggression for nearly six months. Aggression with food, toys, towards the cat, the guinea pigs, the neighbors dogs, anyone or anything outside the house, some aggression towards Frazzle (the puppy) and now Chubbs. Obviously he is bigger and can protect himself but she has been injured twice now. I can not allow a third time. Re-homing is not an option. My animals are a lifetime commitment.

Chubbs is supposedly my "aggressive" dog but I trust him with the puppy more than I do Tovah. Just look how ferocious he is...haha
awww sharing the the comfy bed
 We joke and say he is the babysitter. He has exhibited no signs of aggression--other than the occasional back off  puppy your getting on my nerves growl. When that happens, he is tired and we kennel Frazzle or put him in the puppy playpen. If anything, Chubbs has shown considerable protectiveness over Frazzle.

Playing tug of war with the cat toy. Oops sorry Sam-Sam!

So for now it is separate rooms, feedings and potty breaks for Tovah. She is miserable being penned in another room, but until I can figure out what is wrong, this is what we are going to do. If it turns out Tovah has a behavioral issue then I will find a way to to correct it with training and maybe a few sessions with a canine behaviorist. 

Sad puppy, sad me

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Gobble Gobble Y'all

Or as I like to call it --beginning of the eatin' season!

Can you believe it is just a little more than 4 days until Thanksgiving?

What are y'all planning?

We are going to my Mother-in-Law's house (which is typical for us) but this year the "boys" are gonna deep fry a turkey. Have you ever had deep fried turkey? I am not typically a fan of deep-fried foods but it is soooo good! YUM!!

The best part (besides eatin') is I don't have to get up with the chickens--or turkeys, haha-- and cook it. The only thing I need to cook (or buy) this year is a pumpkin pie!

Deep fried turkey is serious business! It can be extremely dangerous. According to the National Fire Protection Association--every year deep-fryer fires are responsible for five deaths, 60 injuries, the destruction of 900 homes, and more than $15-million in property damage!

You want this...
Not this...

So if you are gonna deep fry a turkey make sure you know what you are doing. SAFETY FIRST!! Because I would hate to find out some of y'all burnt your or your neighbors house down!

This is my FAVORITE video on how to deep fry a turkey--I mean who doesn't love Alton Brown?
Here is a great web tutorial

So if y'all don't want to end up with a Chinese Thanksgiving..

Follow all the safety guidelines for turkey deep frying and you can have your very own Norman Rockwell Turkey Day!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Owl Take It

Last weekend, I felt like dookie. So in the interest of  stimulating the economy and trying to make myself feel better, I embarked on a little retail therapy. And I do mean little because my wallet is feeling mighty light after the recently incurred vet expenses

My daughter and I had a mini-shopping blitz of Petsmart, Marshalls, Kohls and Target. I had coupons and rewards for Petsmart, Marshalls and Kohl's--yay me! And while at Target I earned a $5 giftcard. So I saved AND made some money-woot woot!

I picked up a 2 little trinkets for Christmas.

My friend loves owls. No worries--she doesn't read my blog. I don't think she even remembers I have a blog! In her own words she can barely manage an email. As I was saying she loves owls. She also collects Halloween skeletons. She is kinda weird and kooky...and all together spooky. Wait--that's a different holiday. Or show. Well something different.

I am one of those obnoxious people who likes theme gifts. So this year my friend is getting owls. Although I may have given her owls last year also....hmmm. 

Anyhoo...hahahha...hoo, get it? hoo. Owls? Hoo? Anyone? Geez-tough room...

Owl just have to take that chance...ok ok I will stop with the corny owl puns ...haha

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

!!Vote Vote Vote!!

No matter which candidate  you stand behind, you owe it to yourself, your community and all the men and women who have made sacrifices to defend our freedom.

"Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual - - or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country." -Samuel Adams, Father of the American Revolution

Regardless of who will be president we are blessed to have an opportunity to voice our opinions and participate in the democratic process. 


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Meine Kochschule

My cousin Theresa spent the summer in Munich for a work exchange program. Whenever she travels she always brings me a souvenir or three (since I live vicariously through her and never venture much beyond my city, haha) So I requested-if possible--an authentic German cookbook. 

Translated it means My School
According to her Munich coworkers if you were going to get a German cookbook this is the guy you want to follow. Based on everything I have read, he is the Deutsche equivalent to Emeril Lagasse.

I am of German heritage (diluted of course with several other nationalities). In high school I took four years of German. Briefly when still in college (the first time) for my Chemistry degree I worked a temp lab job and I translated German research abstracts. That was more than 25 years a very long time ago. Besides there is a huge difference between technical and conversational German.

There are beautiful photographs of the recipes (including some of the steps of  how to make it)

Butternockerln and Grießenocklern

loosely translated: Butter and Wheat/ Semolina Dumplings

Gefüllte Rinderroulade

Translated: Stuffed beef roll

Glühweinbirnen and Dunkle Schokomousse

Translated-Pear with mulled wine and dark chocolate mousse

It appears to be a basic cookbook with a few traditional recipes. The fun part will be if I can correctly translate AND convert the measurements from metric to US customary measurements. Piece of cake, right? Or should I say "Es ist ein Stück Kuchen" Gee-- I hope my syntax is linguistically correct!

But if I really get stuck I can always ask my wonderful friend Trish who is an active member of the Germania society or I can cheat and ask my cousin Theresa who has the English version, haha