Sunday, February 28, 2010

New Record: Hudson and Home Without Being Pulled Over...

Hi all,

Well, last night was certainly interesting. After some very tricking backing up (on both my part and the car I was following...) and a confusing drive, we made it to where the concert was at. As usual, it was crowded and hot. Since I was DDing I only had a drink and tried to keep tabs on our small group. I had a lot of fun hanging out with a co-worker that I'd only seen in passing and she kept me good company (she also had the misfortune to walk through the door after the sound guy placed a firecracker in a piece of cake, and got to wear it for the rest of the evening...). We also met some co-workers from another camp nearby, and that was quite the experience.

The group ended up splitting up, and when I was certain the other two had a ride home I set off. Unfamiliar with the route, and paranoid about all the speeding traps I'd seen/heard about I was extra cautious. They have these annoying "End 30" signs, but don't state the limit. Supposedly it's 55 if not stated, but lots of curves have reduced limits. I'd just hit a stretch of highway with 3 lanes, 2 on my side. I was going 40 and just as I was about to speed up I noticed a cop car cresting the hill in front of me. Paranoid, I kept my course steady. I was so engrossed I made a little mistake. Before I know it, I see them turn around in my rearview mirror and start flashing their lights.

I knew to pull over immediately, and had my license at a ready. The co-worker who was navigating was a titch tipsy, and couldn't find the registration..."What does it even look like?!?"
It was shaping up great. Here's the convo between the cop and myself:

"Hey there. Do you know why I pulled you over?"
"No, actually"
"You didn't dim your brights."
"Oh my goodness! I'm so sorry..."
"I see you're from MN...what are you doing here?"
"Ohhhh. I see."
"Have you been drinking tonight?"
"Yes, I had a drink a few hours ago"
"What was it?"
(Other co-worker helpfully murmurs "Uh, wasn't it a beer?")
"No. It was a vodka mixed with energy drink."
"Oh, like Redbull?"
"No. It was AMP. Bleh."
"Yeah. Well, drive safely!"
"Um. Thanks, and the speed limit here is 55, right?"
"Ok, Thank you very much!"


Apparently I could've potentially gotten a $35 ticket, although they were supposed to flash their lights. Perhaps the fact that I was only driving 40-45 convinced them to pull me over. So when I'd said I had a drink, I thought I'd for sure be taking a sobriety test. I'd never been pulled over before, so I have to say it was a novel and not-so-fun experience.

However, I have now improved my record, thus being tied for the moment. I got minorly turned around but nothing major. I had a really good day hanging out with Schmee (also her day off). We went to a coffee shop, had Italian for lunch (splitting this enormous carafe of wine...yum!) and watched a movie on voting for our civic service requirement. Part of it was cartoons...

So, yeah. A really good day after a pretty crazy night...

Hope all is well,

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Sugar Coma

Hi all,

After the morning cleaning, the late lunch and a hurried shower, I was all ready for Connie's birthday party. She had a bunch of ladies over, and the chocolate cake (and some of my back-up pumpkin) was set upon. Housemom and two of the kids left fairly early on, so after I did some cleaning up I curled up on the couch. Beau looked through a book and Connie did some knitting. I fell asleep (apparently) with the 6 year old patting my head while she read, perched up on the couch arm.

I only know that I fell asleep because I had a terrible dream that it was Saturday morning (ha) and we had to have oatmeal for breakfast. I was quite upset. However, as I woke up and figured out where I was, I had a lovely warming sensation. I was quite happy to find myself snug in the house and woke up feeling a strong sense of goodwill towards everyone around me!

I woke up in time to get everyone ready to go out for dinner, and after a slight van mishap (housemom accidentally took the wrong van, causing quite a panic for another house with a birthday!) we were on our way. The food was pretty good, although I didn't eat much. I think I was still too full from cake! We had fun reading about our zodiac signs (I've impeccable manners, good intellect and creative, but disposed towards moodiness and disinterest, apparently) and no one kept an eye on Beau when the fortune cookies came, so he ingested his fortune. His eyes opened wide when we told him (thinking we were going to be upset??), but otherwise he really didn't seem to concerned by this pronouncement.

We dropped off the van at the house we borrowed it from, and cut across the village using the paths. I had my arms full. One hand had the two left-over bags and 3 eggs (raw, from the chickens that housemom closed into the coop just before we left) and the other was grasped by the three year old. It was a long walk...but my fingers and the eggs made it! I'm sure it was quite the sight, especially as I'd worn my shoes. Just one of those: didn't see that coming, sort of affairs.

I think I'm going out tonight with a group, and I'm supposed to go and hang out in Hudson tomorrow, so that should be fun. Small chance of a hair cut, but it's a good start!

Hope all is well,

Friday, February 26, 2010

...And THAT'S how we Ended up with 6 Dozen Eggs...

Hi all,

Need I say it was a long day? Housemom had all the kids out of school to go to dentist appointments. So I was home (with the housedad, but he's, well, yeah). So there was lots to do. I managed to bake/frost a cake, bake pumpkin bread (to use up the can), make lunch, get the milk pail dropped off, a trip to the co-op orchestrated, and got everyone where they needed to go on time. The co-op run was pretty essential, as we needed a few eggs to make the cake and bread. I sent her off, and she returned without them, saying they had none. Now, I'd seen two whole boxes full of flats of eggs, so I knew something wasn't right. I called for clarification and found out that they'd been out of cartons to put the eggs in, but now had some. Luckily, they had someone who could drop some off. Not 5 minutes after he dropped off the two dozen, the bakery delivery guy came in and unloaded 4 dozen more! Apparently our request to only get 2 dozen (delivered on Thursdays...) got messed up. So, yeah, we have 6 dozen expensive eggs ($4 a dozen...)...any guesses what's for brunch???

I somehow survived the morning, and lunch with our guests that invited themselves. Immediately afterwards I had to hike over to another house to borrow their fan to do the town run. Only 2 of the 3 people who'd reserved a spot showed up. So we got into town and back in record time. And I didn't miss the turn!

The co-op was pretty typical. One co-worker didn't bother to show up or call, the printer decided not to work, the produce came in and I got to do the ordering list. We did enjoy some pretty scrumptions pumpkin bread topped with extra maple/creamcheese frosting though. Have I mentioned that I'm enjoying maple syrup for the first time in my life on a regular basis? I hate that processed shit that they call "syrup" which is the lowest grade imaginable mixed with a ton of sugar and is practically black. Thankfully, we're all too organic for that here. Although that's pretty much the only thing that I find vastly superior.

Supper was a nice time. Afterwards, when cleaning up, we got a bit giggly. I've been having issues with "Connie" (short for controversial...nice, right?) as she cleans up every day with wiping the table and sweeping. As I'm doing the dishes, she likes to say "Excuse me!" and practically butts me out the way for the water. So we're working on waiting for me to move. Tonight she thought it was funny as I approached the sink to give me a little hip bump, and then giggled. I giggled back. Housemom had been singing, and so Connie sang
"Do you like my siiiiinging?"
"Yes I like your siiiiinging!"
And suddenly the ball was rolling. The children and housemom got into a competition to see who could sing highest. Suddenly, my charge - Maria - barges into the kitchen and excited asks if she can try.
The ear-piercing operatic tone that ensued was fantastic. I literally was jumping up and down with laughter. She was declared the winner. Honestly, it was just hysterical.

The villagers were all invited to a neighbor's house for Mama Mia! tonight. Beau, our basically non-verbal guy (he likes to pet my arm and sometimes kiss it...) was vehemently opposed and actually left the table. So he stayed home tonight. I set him up with a magazine to read, while I plopped into the beanbag chair by one of the couches. Naturally, he sat nearest the end to where I was at - occasionally reaching down to pat my head. Suddenly, something falling caught my eye. Looking over, I confirmed my suspicion. Beau has partial dentures, which has some natural side effects. Apparently this now includes drooling onto my head. Well, mostly my hair.
All I could think to say was:
"Beau! You just drooled on me!"
A slightly concerned look passed his face, which slyly turned into a small giggle. I suppose I should be rather grossed out by this, but really...who can say they've literally been drooled over?

Hope all is well (and dry!),
PS And no, of course we have no idea of when we'll be getting a new male co-worker. Don't be silly.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Taking a Break from Kissing Strange Men

Hi all,

And it's only because I feel such an onerous burden towards all of you. That, and to guarantee that my lips wouldn't implode. It was a long afternoon in the co-op. Lots of little squabbles and nit-picking. At one point, (for some reason now lost to my mind), I finally interjected "...Because I've been kissing all those strange men!". My controversy-loving villager replied quite emphaticall that I couldn't have been. Amused, I continued the thread, including that perhaps there'd been some women, and actually, I had been with all of the co-workers. Funnily enough, when pressed on WHY I couldn't have been, she wouldn't give me an answer! I must admit, I was slightly disappointed.

Thus, I must find some strange men to kiss.



Anyhow, the village has saturated my subconscious. The last two nights running, I've had dreams centered around life here. The first one I was helping to give showers (although I only help 1 person...) and I got really mad because when I wasn't looking, she crept back in for a second one. I was quite peeved. Last night was a whole new realm. First there were a bunch of wild steers and all the German guys decided they were going to ride them. This obviously went well. I was then skiing with the housemom/dad/kids but my boots wouldn't fit into my skis. Suddenly, a mob (not the mob...although that would've been kinda cool...) started following me. They eventually ripped off one of my shoes (?) and threw it into a deep hole. Dream ended there - so not really sure what to tell you about that one...

If anyone cares to analyze those, they can drop me a line.

Moving on. Tomorrow I will be doing the run into town during the rest time because it is my house's turn. So far, two villagers have called to reserve a spot. I'm kind of hoping another co-worker will call, because last time I did miss the turn coming back. However, I'll probably be hyper-paranoid, so maybe it'll be ok.

So yeah, other than having my non-existing sexual proclivities discussed and dreaming of work, my day was pretty mundane. It did rain, however, ALL DAY LONG. Might do so for the next two days. Joy.

We will be saying goodbye to our co-worker tomorrow (and hopefully, HOPEFULLY finding out about a new one?) and so things might get a little emotional. I, for one, have no particularly strong feelings on the matter. He clearly wasn't happy and didn't enjoy his job and so therefore didn't take any pride or real care in what he was doing. Now, we may get another person who is indignant that he had to move and resents us for it. Could be a ton of fun.

Hope all is well,

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Hi all,

Unfortunately (for my sanity, at any rate), work was canceled not only this morning, but this afternoon as well. This meant that everyone was home while I was trying to plan out lunch. I did have to make a co-op run, although it was slightly treacherous. Trees were cracking and losing limbs left and right. More daunting, however, was the “dumping”. The trees were reaching maximum weight and if one clump of snow managed to slip off, all the rest would immediately follow with a:


The only warning was the first little dropping and a vague rustling sound. At times it seemed to be following me. 20 feet behind, then 10…then 5…the RUN! I discovered at least one person at the co-op who’d had the misfortune to be dumped upon, although he said it was a bracing and rather exhilarating experience. The paths weren’t cleared very well due to the downed branches and fast accumulation. I got what I needed, but Ross mentioned he needed onions. When I discovered he had cilantro, we decided to swap ingredients, as I’d been planning on a “Mexican Millet”. I trekked back home, got the onions and set off for our meeting place. I heard a beeping from the bakery, and fearing that a power outage had done something to the machinery, I went to investigate. I found out that the power had gone out and it was the attention alarm. I found out that the house Ross is at (with Bean) also had no power, except some back-up lights.

When I got back home I found mild chaos. The children have been quite whiney and cross lately, and this didn’t bring out the best in them. Plus, I kept having to shepherd people out of the kitchen. However, eventually the food was cooked and pronounced delicious and “Better than last time!” (oh, non-English-as-a-first-language-speakers…).

We had our neighborhood meeting (uneventful, but as hilariously quirky as usual) and then I found out about afternoon work being canceled as well. Luckily, housemom let me come with her and the children (very cranky…) into town to get to the library and to pick up a birthday present. The shop we needed was closed, but we went to another shop, a cafĂ© and the library.

Dinner went fine, and the evening was stretching on until the power went off. I found myself with one girl in my arms, another latched to my side –both screaming- while in search for the candles. After about 45 minutes, power was restored; as it turns out they were only shutting it down to repair elsewhere. Thanks for the warning…idiots.

Bean came over tonight (also needing refuge after a too-long and trapped day) and we spent almost 2 hours chatting. I find it hilarious that she also says “Meh”, “W00T”, and “anywho” – it’s one of those “We just have to be friends” harbingers. Although, I must say that MA is a novel state in which “padiddle” is a stripping game…

Hope all is well,


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The First Crusade...

Hi all,

Well, the First Crusade was a sucky thing, along with the 2nd, 3rd, Children's, etc. However, I am referencing my first trip out of the village alone! When housemom suggested it this morning - a jaunt over to the local IGA (with a villager, which didn't happen...) and then the co-op - I think a slightly stricken look might have passed over my face. I'd imagined my first trip out with a carload of people, with another co-worker riding shotgun to shout out speed limits/traps and let me know the way. However, I have been paying attention, and with just a simple route confirmation I was underway. (Though it took me 15 minutes to garner the gumption!)

The drive was pretty uneventful. I enjoyed listening to the radio and learned two interesting tidbits. The first (and actaully relevant...) was that the tri-state area would be in a severe-weather warning until this evening (it was around 10:30 AM), and the second was from a liquor store. I learned about how they stabilize the cream in Bailey's by homogenizing it with vegetable oil in order to bond with the whiskey, which in turn keeps it from spoiling. The shelf-life is two years, although it should be consumed 6 months within opening. Thinking about the bottles I've seen that have been languishing in my parent's liquor cabinet, this concerns me slightly.

However, as I said, the forecast predicted snow (and possibly freezing rain! YUCK!). I wandered around feeling like an idiot (like everyone (?) does their first time in a new grocery store) but managed to find almost everything, and the empty spots for things I couldn't. I made it back to the village and co-op and then home in time for lunch! A very successful first-trip out!

Sometime during my rest hour, I discovered as I came out, approximately 4 inches of snow had fallen. Outside has been transformed into a beautiful winter wonderland. The snow was moist and heavy, it squeaked under my boots. It was the only thing you could hear, as sound was blanketed under the still-softly-falling snow clusters. It snowed right up until dinner time, so I got to walk back in it as well.

Work was so-so. It was order day, so I kept us marching along with getting stuff priced, stamped and organized. I had to leave the room, however, when the topics of babies was brought up. Another person in the village is expecting (privacy, what?) and someone from their house was going on about it. It took several interesting turns ('You have to be married to have a baby' , 'What if I had a baby', 'What if Steph had a baby', etc) and all the positives to negatives (earplugs...) were discussed in detail. Eww. Babies.

Snacktime (and eating in general) has been interesting lately due to me being down about 2 senses. Though my nose isn't clogged up usually, I have no sense of smell and also no sense of taste. (Which I appreciated for the squash soup last night...) This is interesting, because I can still sense a little - my mint gum had cool vapors and the spicy soup tonight had a little burn in it, but other than that I'm completely oblivious. Eating has become a bit boring. It's also a bit hilarious because it means that I'm truly a texture-eater right now...

I came home to housemom and the kids playing in the snow. Housemom convinced the other co-worker (from India...he was enchanted as well...) to look up under one of the bushes. When you ducked under it, it was like being a snow house. As I took my turn, I muttered "How can I tell that this is all going to fall on me?". When it did.

I didn't suspect foul play until Housemom grabbed hold of the other co-worker and said "You want to take him out?!" Luckily, my hood had been up, but I'd still gotten a liberal dousing.
The look on his face when she let go of him and I foot-ball tackled him to the ground was apparently priceless - I very much doubt he's ever been tackled into the snow, much less by a girl. (I blame these physical impulses on having three brothers... : P )

Finally, we still don't know who the incoming co-worker will be. Apparently there was a meeting yesterday (not the community meeting), but no one was really interested. Admittedly, we're looking for a medicine giver, but that doesn't have to be the deciding criteria. Also, I'm pretty sure that the majority of people are at least comfortable (if not downright happy) in their current placements, so it's not extremely surprising. So maybe we'll have to wait afterall?
That'd be very preferable to having someone forced against their preference...

Hope all is well,

PS Dear Mom and Dad, my Tequila has no expiration...and I'll be back for it.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Bitsy with a Lisp

Hi all,

Today was a rather hectic day. I was left to hold down the homestead (well, hostdad was nominally here...) and run the work crew. Unfortunately, almost everyone has the sniffles, so things were a little more restless than usual.

I used an interesting recipe that was for a rice, pasta and lentil dish with a buttery mint sauce. It was...good, I hope? I genuinely couldn't tell, as my taste buds have gone MIA with my cold. Considering we had squash soup for dinner though, it might come out as a wash for the day. However, it seemed as though people enjoyed it. The co-op didn't have any mint but housemom (before she ran out the door for the day) gave me the easy solution of using the 5 Mint tea, or regular mint tea. This obvious solution probably tasted a lot better than the peppermint extract I'd been dubiously eyeing...

Unfortunately, my orientation class was canceled because the "instructor" is sick. He's more of a mentor-guide, but the discussion to ask for a new male co-worker volunteer didn't end up happening. Instead it was brought to the village meeting tonight. Our house decided not to send a representative in order to show "faith in their decision". Need I say my feelings on this decision? Of course, I may just be nosy.

At any rate, I spent the afternoon in the co-op and was the only one there for almost the first half an hour. Since I wasn't supposed to be there at all, this concerned me slightly. However, most of everyone eventually showed up, except one of the other co-workers, who evidently decided to embrace the lack of orientation as a day off. Guess I'm still too Catholic for that. Sigh.

The title for today's post responds to my charge coming in to eat dinner and catching sight of one of the dolls that one of the girls had propped up in the window behind the table.
"What's THAT?!"
"That's Bitsy"
"Um, you can call her baby..."
"That's Bitchy!"

Yes...apparently a slight lisp and issue with that. Apparently we haven't sang "The Itsy Bitsy Spider", and I am now slightly tempted to do so next time there's a shower.

I just supressed an evil little laugh.

Hope all is well,

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sap For Dinner

Hi all,

Yes, sugaring season has begun! Earlier this week buckets popped up all over the place, sometimes two to a tree. Housemom went for a walk with the kids to get some (they were going to do a sugar run, but didn't collect this weekend = almost over-flowing buckets!) and so she decided we should drink it instead of water with dinner! It was only slightly thicker than water, and only tinged with sweetness. Pretty good, all things considered. Oh, and my blueberry-strawberry crisp was a hit.

Thankfully, crisp is easy to make, otherwise I'm not sure my energy level would take it. One of the villagers (the almost completely non-verbal one) decided he wanted to help out. These offers are fleeting, and it's a mark that he really likes you. So even if it went like the dishwasher - with me following every thing behind - I still enjoy his help. He did a good job of putting the sliced-up strawberries into the bowl to be tossed with the blueberries and helpfully pointed emphatically to the oven. He did, however, manage to "decorate" the bathroom with some strawberry juice when I sent him to wash up...When I came back a few minutes later to do a quick check, I discovered he was wearing the aprons that housemom and I use most frequently. It was really cute.

Other than the crisp, I was pretty unproductive. I did do laundry, including ALL Of the blankets on my bed. There was one scratchy blanket I wasn't sure about, but since I didn't see a tag, I just decided to throw it in. When I went to move it to the dryer, I discovered the "Dry Clean ONLY!" tag on it. Whoops. However, I vaguely remembered from the last time that I washed a wool blanket (on purpose, thank you) I looked it up and found out that they can be mostly dried in the dryer. So that was the plan...yeah. I came downstairs to find most of the load still very damp, and the blanket almost entirely dry. As I pulled it out, housemom came in and said
"Oh! I was going to tell you about that...but I forgot!"
Turns out she knew it was wool - she'd brought that blanket with - and was going to tell me to not dry it, but hang it up (she didn't know about the dry clean only either, apparently). Fortunately, it was completely intact and after I expressed my dismay that I could've shrunk it, she merely exclaimed:
"Well, it would've made a good throw for the couch then!"
Cool, or what?

I mostly stayed in my room reading, sleeping and doing some metal work. I had the humidifier on a little too long though - my posters started to slip down the wall as the tape lost adhesive! Other than that, nothing too exciting happened.

Tomorrow will be another story. I'm feeling quite a bit better than yesterday, and expect that trend to continue. Apparently there will be a meeting held to try to find a volunteer to come and take the place of the co-worker that's going home at the end of this week. We're hoping someone who has been here a while (and thus knows the drill) will step up and want to move. Hopefully someone who is positive, enthusiastic, good/patient with children and wants to be incorporated into house life. Worse case scenario is that they'll stick in an in-coming person at a later date. I mean, the person that they find could be absolutely super, but it will be a lot more stressful to have to go without a co-worker for a while and then to have someone get completely acclimated to the house. True, I was in the boat not too long ago, but I think I acclimated quite quickly.

Anyhow, enough patting myself on the back!

Hope all is well,

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Focusing on the Positives...

Hi all,

Well, it's a short list, but I'll try to make do. First of all, I managed to finally get a library card today. This was exciting, and although the library is a tiny affair it does have a interlibrary loan system. The most exciting thing (that I forgot from last night...) is that I got not one, but two social invitations yesterday for today. Now, of course it wasn't my day off (and I'm rather contaminated, so I think they would've rethought their invitation...) but it definitely made my day.

The children have been driving housemom nuts and at one point she finally exclaimed:
"If you want to stay downstairs...and better behave!"
This of course, was slightly hilarious.

I feel sorry that she's carrying so much responsibility - especially with me at about half strength. My energy and patience levels are much depleted, so I can only imagine how hers are! And, as my mother always said: "Babysitting is the best form of birth control".

Remember when I had that conversation with housemom about working on my humor? Tonight was a good example...I was sitting next to my charge at the table and she was only picking at her food, finally I asked why she wasn't eating...
"Can you take it off??"
"Take off your fake bandaid?" (One of the children went to town on the medical tape on her pinkie...)
As I was struggling for a good 10 minutes at the table, my mind wandered and I started to say:
"Wouldn't it be funny if the finger fell o- oops"
"I didn't say it! I didn't Say it! I caught myself..."

However, not five minutes later we were talking about how they were going to get to the hall (in which pairs) and housemom blurted out that she could take the camel!
I gave her a stern look and told her I had issues with this on two levels.
One, is that it's hardly keeping a "realistic grounding" on the situation and the second is that it's really hard to get her off of her animal "fixations" and I really don't want to keep on hearing about/being asked what a camel sounds like, where is it at, what is it's name, can you ride it, can you touch it, will it bite you...etc. Bobcats, wolves, and lately the mastodon have been fixations and it gets a little tiring. Plus, she just ends up naming them all "Peter" anyways...

Hope all is well,

Friday, February 19, 2010


Hi all,

I'm particularly disappointed in my immune system. After 4 years of practically no illness (short colds maybe once or twice a year, plus allergies...but still) while in a college atmosphere and now this. You'd think that irregular sleeping, eating and high stress situations (not to mention the occasional very-sick roommate) would have made me more likely to become ill. However, it in no way prepared me to come and live with three young children. They've picked up their 4th (5th? 6th???) illness this winter and successfully passed on a second to me. Mine have been a lot milder, thank goodness, but I'm still not too thrilled.

I spent most of my my morning curled up in bed in a comatose state. Infinitely preferable to hacking. I only ventured out to take a driving "test" because they're practically impossible to get, let alone re-schedule! I passed, although the speed limits had me driving insanely cautious and I might've missed a key turn at one point. Yeah.

Luckily, most of the house was on a "youth group trip" to the museum. This meant that during shower time, somehow the word "pterodactyl" made it into the refrain of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". I wish I could explain how.

Tomorrow will be good, I'm hoping. I've been popping herbal remedies and have some day-cold medication that I'm going to take. We've planned a day out after morning cleaning, and I'm pretty excited to get my library card.

I'm working my way through the books I got. Two were disappointments (Ray Bradbury: should stick to short stories...and I got mislead on an Asimov book, it mostly has essays written by him...), but several good ones. I am terribly enamored with Paulo Coelho and so I'm hoping the library will have some of his books I haven't read yet, and hopefully a decent science fiction section.

On a completely different note, we just found out that the other co-worker will be leaving next Friday. There are many reasons contributing to it, but I think it's a decision that has let him have some peace. I'm not sure if they'll be able to move a new person in right away, or shuffle around from another house. It's definitely a difficult house compared to some, so I hope whoever we get will be a good fit!

Hope all is well (and healthy),

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Once in a Lifetime Task...

Hi all,

Today I attempted the nigh-impossible. I dusted the co-op. Well, the places I could reach. I pondered outloud that we needed the tallest co-worker in the village to help out. And who should happen to wander in a mere half hour later? He gracefully obliged me, and so now only the highest parts have eluded my feather duster.

Housemom and the kids took off today for a much needed "day off". They went to the museum, drove around, and ended up with a speeding ticket. (A very stupid one, they were accelerating into a speed limit and got caught between the dumb is that?!) This meant that the house was very quiet today. I made guacamole (for snacking), and then combined and made meat sauce for noodles. Not extremely taxing, by any means. I had to run around to find cilantro, and got a very nice compliment from the housemom nextdoor. She offered support should I need it (taking on a lot with all the kids home and a co-worker flux...) and said she was impressed with how much I was managing. Honestly, having the whole morning with helping-supervising the morning crew and cooking seems not too bad when compared with banquet madness and a Turkish-screaming 5 year old. Not that the kids can't drive me up the wall here a little, but they're generally great kids and I'm not in charge of them!

Things are a bit off-balance here with all the sickness (to which I'm valiantly struggling to combat!), a personal (not mine) problem or two, and the kids on break. But I feel as though I do have a support structure to lean on (both here and outside with friends and family) and so I Really do think it's still going well. All except for the internet of course, which keeps flickering as I write this post even! Arg. Guess that means I better publish this ASAP...

Hope all is well,

P.S. Just found out I'm 2 degrees of separation from James Bond. Yes, you should be envious...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ohhh, Vietnamese, Righhhht.

Hi all,

This is one of the posters that I did end up snitching after the festivities were over. In all fairness, they were just getting tossed out, so Schmee, Bean and myself all helped ourselves. I just realized today (it was late last night, ok?) the significance of having the lettering on one side of "End the War" be in Vietnamese. Oh, that war. Total blond moment. Moving on...

The last time I checked the clock last night (with an immediate "Oh. Not going to be good tomorrow...") was 1:37 AM. I'm estimating my actual sleep time at 2. I was coughing some, and just generally keyed-up. We didn't get back from dropping Schmee off until a bit past 12 (her house just up and left her at the Village...nice, right?) and so I was way too tired to post last night. I got to see inside Bean's house, which I think is the newest in the village. Needless to say, their house is very nice, and her room is square. This is a no-no in Anthroposophical architecture (yup...) and impressed me almost as much as E.T. E.T. Had a very traumatizing effect of my childhood (large volume increase shortly before the popping-out-of-the-closet scene...) so I'm impressed with her guts.

The Woodstock carnival was deemed by most people to be a huge success. However, half of the band got very lost, 1 person (non-essential?) never made it, they started playing 20 minutes before it was supposed to be done (then played for another 1.5 hours...), skit people got mad because the stage wasn't available, the sound system was FUBAR - songs without words... and things just generally ran late. However, there were balloons, doughnuts and eventual music, and that's pretty much everything anyone needed! Bean was in charge of running the sound (which is a patch-worked, outdated monstrosity) and I helped solve two technical problems. One included changing a channel on the microphone. This means, Steph = pretty much useless, but lucky.

I enjoyed the doughnuts.

And I danced, though I'm not proud of my technique and may deny it.


So, at any rate, today was very slow at the house. I was very tempted to shoot the other co-worker when he accidentally made oatmeal (it's our cold cereal day, damn it!), I'd suffered through 2 entirely bland days already and it was absolutely unbearable. So, I ended up eating the organic o's instead. It was an honest mistake, but at this point with the oatmeal...well...yeah. We ended up having pizza for lunch, and housemom got one of the staff kids (a tall, goodnatured senior) from next door to baby sit. I'm not sure what they submitted him to outside, but they were tying him up with the play silks inside and using him as a human jungle-gym. I don't know what he did wrong, but I'm guessing he won't do it again!

After rescuing him with a tea-time of hot cocoa and nachos, it was a bit of a struggle for him to get extracted from the clutches of the 3 year old. After he managed to escape, this conversation took place:

Him: "I'm going to go get him!"
Me: "What are you going to do?! Carry him back??"
H: "NO! I'm going to drag him...on the road. And then I'm going to tie him up in the boot room..."
M: "And then what? Hope for Stockholm's syndrome?"
*Blank Look*
H: "...NO! I'm going to leave him downstairs for the monsters to get at night! THEY'LL EAT HIM!!!!"

And all this because he was so sad to see him go...?

We also didn't have a meeting today, so I managed to conk out for a while. The Co-op was pretty unspectacular, and we were scrambling for things to do. Definitely over-staffed... OH! I got my keys!! A previous co-op person finally dropped them off last night for me. So now I can open 2 doors out of 4, but now I can at least let myself in and not stand around awkwardly outside.

Tomorrow Housemom is attempting to take a day off with the children. Someone will come in to do lunch meds and I found out our usual lunch guest won't be coming this week. I don't usually make lunch on Thursday, and I'm not sure about rye. May just end up winging it...On a slightly related note, I'm not in charge of soup for tomorrow but I do have to think up a dessert for after Sunday dinner...any ideas??

Hope all is well,

A Wild Success, But Not Night

Hi all,

So it's WAY late here, and I missed my daily blogging by about a half hour.
Tomorrow will be a double.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Taking the Plunge

Hi all,

Today, I was baptized. It was rather impromptu and a complete surprise to me. I blame math. Because, I was always told (see Mr R. I did listen...) "The shortest path between two points is a straight line". So, after orientation today I decided to go to the house I needed to drop a key off at by going through a field and avoiding the two much longer and looping pathways. There is a fence, but it's a wooden affair that I felt competent I could swing over. I'd forgotten about the small creek, however. I saw it just in time, and since it looked like it's about 1 foot wide, I gave it another 1-2 feet on each side to be safe and jumped for it...


Hmm, well, at least my boots stayed on...And, I Shout*ed out the mud stains, so really, it was a wash. (Ha ha ha. Sorry.) Housemom decided that it was one of those things that just really proved you'd made it. So, add that to the list of sickness, and I'm beginning to wonder how many more things are considered in that account. Hopefully I won't find out.

I spent most of orientation making decorations for the carnival celebration tomorrow. We've got a wide variety of flowers (in eye-popping neon colors!) and posters. Mine was spectacularly unspectacular, but we had a really good artist that made some truly wonderful ones. I was tempted to steal one to hang in my room...bad Steph.

We also got costumes together for the ladies tonight. Housemom also made sure that I will be adequately costumed, lending me some boots, big earrings and a good opinion. I'm hoping it will be fun, but it's only 2 hours so I should be able to survive it no problem. Plus, the music group is pretty good and I hope everyone likes them.

Hope all is well,

Sunday, February 14, 2010

I'm Pretty Much Amazing

Hi all,

Oh, yeah, and modest too! And honestly, housemom helped out here and there. I did manage to run breakfast and brunch (yummy biscuits, scrambled eggs with cream cheese and "bacon"). The bacon was already smoked, and was mostly fat, I had to hack 3/4" slices. I felt like I was at a country breakfast with James Herriot.

I'd given out boxes of Valentine Hearts at breakfast, and it was hilarious because one of the quiet guys ended up dumping his in his milk and ate them that way before I noticed. He was in a great mood all day, despite both the male co-workers being gone. Lots of supportive back-patting and hand-holding. He also snuck up and kissed my arm, which apparently happens now and again. When he found out that we were helping with the bedtime routine, he thought it was great fun to have his teeth brushed by me and pretty much giggled his way through it. Plus, we'd had a "Valentine's Day Cake" (which had the strangest meringue oozed EVERYWHERE...housemom was a little disturbed by her latest creation!), which is always a good thing as he has a sweet tooth.

Today, the person I work most closely with broke down in tears of happiness. I wasn't sure what was happening at first and was really confused. She was singing happy birthday to a friend back home, it was really cute. She had a good day, I think.

I also did a stint in the giftshop today, which was mostly uneventful. I'd brought my jewelry stuff, and now have the core part of the chain done. It needs two side-rows and all the beads attached, but it's looking good. I'm still pissed that I can't find my clasps, they were drilled out and I have no clue what happened to them. Lost in my room at home, I suppose. Grrr.

So, yeah. That was my Valentine's Day, I was happy with it!

Hope all is well,

Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Monstrosity Against Nature...

Hi all,

Yup. Another picture. It now strikes me as funny that immediately after seeing this (and having someone else walking up whip out their cell phone to likewise photograph it) that I had a discussion about how to properly catch a unicorn. Dork that I am, I assumed this was general knowledge.

I had a nice trip with (nicknames are hard, and I know she'll read this, so I feel performance pressure to pick out a good nickname...sigh) Bean. She may kill me for that one, but it's better than Jelly, right? And Jelly Bean is pretty long, so let's go with Bean. If she threatens me with death, it will be accordingly changed. Stressful.

Anyhow, the trip was NOT stressful, and we went to a cafe and then a cool little bead shop that's tucked away. I wasn't able to resist a beautiful piece of Olive Agate, and despite it's large size, I think it will be my next side challenge - to reward myself with after a certain amount of effort on the matching necklaces. Bean let me browse to my heart's content (although with a warning beforehand that she might need to just cut me off at any time!) and we had fun chatting about blogs - how we mainly find out what the other's up too...sad? - and other random topics.

She got me back in time to quickly change, eat and get down to the house that has the co-worker who works with the horses. Nat has quite a bit of experience, so it was a little intimidating. I'm fairly competent, I think, but this was a new experience for me. New horse, new habits, English Saddle (not as familiar as Western for me), and different bridle and reining technique. Plus, the horse is a "tester" and so let's just say that my legs went out before hers did! I also was notified right before (or after?) mounting what to do if she should decide to buck. After a bit of a nasty incident with a horse this summer, my fondness for bucking horses (and therefore comfort level) didn't help much. I certainly didn't impress Nat, but she was really supportive and made sure I committed to coming back and not to take it personally. I really hadn't, since I've had horses test me before. Including a 2 hour stint trying to get a very stubborn horse over a small wooden bridge...But I knew the horses really well, and that goes a long way. This will definitely be a work in progress for me, but a good challenge , I should hope.

It definitely made me appreciate all the work and patience of the people who ran the barn that I worked at, and the amazing horses they have. It's been such a blessing in my life.

Tomorrow I will be running the show. I'll be covering cold-cereal breakfast, brunch (I have to CUT bacon...strange), and then doing a stint in the gift shop. So, a full day...

Hope all is well!

PS Enjoy the Olympic figure skating for me, I don't normally lament not having a TV or streaming capability, but it would've been nice for this!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Me + 3 y/o + Frosting =

Hi all,

So, yeah...It was a good joint effort, really. We made my cream cheese frosting but added a good dollop of cocoa powder. It was light and creamy, and the cake that Housemom made was almost like a brownie. A very good combination! We made said cake because we had yet another birthday in the house. Housemom was running around all morning tending to her sick children (2/3 sick...) and so I pretty much ran the show. We had a super-simple lunch (Fridays are becoming spaghetti day, I've decided...) and so it all went pretty smoothly.

The other co-worker has been spending the mornings next door (temporarily) cooking lunch to help out while they're transitioning between some co-workers. He has a very annoying habit of coming in afterwards and poking in around my annoys me immensely. He always has a little comment as well, and after I've spent the whole morning working and trying to follow the grain of the day (usually...), a little whining is the last thing that I want to hear! Plus, he refuses to eat the dishes together (like the grain and then the topping) so I'm sure it tastes not very good -especially for millet! I finally semi-kicked him out of the kitchen today, and he got the picture...I hope...

The afternoon was pretty typical at the co-op. Met a few more new -to me- faces (yup, a month and still running into new ones...) and tried to stay on task. However, what happened before work was actually funny. One of the young men in the house gets Sports Illustrated. Housemom warned me when I get the mail to just chuck the swimsuit edition - it's an unneeded thing to have around. Well, guess who decided to pick up the mail today? Luckily, I managed to convince him that the second edition wasn't really his and slipped it
upstairs quickly. (Really, Valentine's Day? Although funny, because it was his
When I came back down Housemom asked:
"Where'd it go?"
"Oh, I threw it in my the first place to come
to mind: Under the mattress!"
"Uh, well...just don't forget about it until you move out or a lot of people will be saying: 'We had no idea!' "
"Um. Yes. Wow."

The awkwardness of that possibility is slightly hilarious. Needless to say, it is no longer under my mattress!

In order to celebrate the birthday, we went
out to an Asian restaurant. This was super exciting because of:

Yay! Sushi!

It has occurred to me that I've had it in strange places. Denmark, Las Vegas and now a tiny town in Massachusetts. I was going to take a picture of the two types (my favorite, a salmon with cream cheese and then the tuna and avocado), but in my excitement I forgot. So, it's the last little piece. By the liquid you can see around it, it's easy to show how non-adept I am at chopsticks. We had a pretty good time, and everyone enjoyed the awesome food!

I'm glad that it's my day off tomorrow, though I'm sure I will not be afforded the luxury of sleeping in. Perhaps in the summer I shall find a cheap tent - tarp? And camp out the night before. My proximity to the bathroom (not to mention Saturday cleaning/Sunday Service) just makes it an impossibility. Oh, yeah, and the screaming children. Hmm...Earplugs are also a thought. Have to wait and see...

Hope all is well,

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Oh So Tempting to SCIP

Hi all,

For whatever ridiculous reason, SCIP training is referred to as "Skip" instead of "Sip". I was supposed to have it all day today, but we finished in just the morning session. This was both good and bad. Good because I couldn't face another 3 hours of the instructor's droning (he decided to explain what "punishment" meant, and other obvious things...) and made up words. I mean, "unappropriate" - really?!? Plus all the contradictions. Urg. However, it also was going to keep me out of my afternoon workshop (and away from the villager I've been having a frustrating time with), and so I was rather loathe to go. The other co-worker really took charge though, and kept everyone moving throughout the day.

We also had an Americorps meeting during the cafe lunch (a terrible idea, too loud and too many interruptions). It was strange to be in a group meeting and surrounded by Americans...
Nothing really applied to me yet since they're mostly at the 6 month stage and I'm still about 5 months shy of that...

Anyhow, it translated to being a long and tiring day and it'll be nice to be back in rhythm for tomorrow and set up for my day off on Saturday. YAY! If the weather holds, I'll hopefully be able to go out for a ride...

Hope all is well,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Hi all,

Now, I've been really impressed with Housemom. I mean, she's incredibly patient (yet incredibly human!), a wonderful mother and a good mentor. However, yesterday I gained major respect, because: she literally shattered glass with her mind. Now, the fact that she's not sure how she did it, only makes me more in awe. (And

She was holding a small glass in her hand to put in the dishwasher when it exploded into at least 500 tiny shards. Mainly into the dishwasher, unfortunately...She said it was the strangest sensation, that she could feel the energy of the explosion in that split-second. (Not that she has delusions of power, she wonders if there was a crack she didn't see or if it was a pressure/temperature change?) But how impressive is it to say that she can blow stuff up. She's like a Jedi-Mom Master...

Ok dork, back in your cage.

Today was pretty average. I made a not-so-tasty (but nourishing...) lunch with millet, kale and garbonzo beans (with onions, garlic, white wine and other little things). The other co-worker has been temporarily going next door to cook, but comes back to eat at the house. He was particularly disappointed, as he'd prepared a yummy meal and got to hear all about it from everyone else...

We had a neighborhood co-worker meeting and I got approved to have myself submitted to the car group to become a driver. So, hopefully within 2-3 weeks I should on the road. Mmmm, freedom...Also discussed was the upcoming carnival - and at one point a eurythmy strip-dance set to Woodstock music was discussed. I'm slightly intrigued.

Yes, that was a joke.

No, I still don't know what eurythmy is, other than a movement therapy.

I also had a goal's talk tonight with Housemom, as apparently this happens for most co-workers. As we all well know, my humor can be excessive at times and apparently caused a little confusion. So I shall be working to remedy that.

I did receive a wonderful comment though. She remarked that, for some reason/feeling, she could see me down the road as a long-term community member. I have to agree that it's probably a possibility. But the point of this year, really, is for me to be open. Open to find my life's calling (I hope), perhaps someone to spend my life with, or just to have a year to myself to grow.

The innate-planner in me and the slightly burned out Steph have some issues agreeing at times, but it's something that gives me peace right now. I'm enjoying "living in the moment" and feeling comfortable, for the most part. I know that growth requires some unease, and I'm ok with that as well. The constant feeling of stress and that horrible panicky feeling of not knowing if I'll suddenly be ambushed and accused of gross incompetence is slowly fading, and unfortunate bit of soul-damage from Turkey. The core issue of respect is so ingrained and sacred here, that it's no wonder that some people never leave.

Well, that was entirely too philosophical...

Hope all is well,

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Champion Nut Rescuer

Hi all,

This was pretty much my largest achievement of the day. The morning was pretty quiet...but filled with cleaning. Urg. Our new morning helper is quite fantastic and a willing soul. I also got out for a quick co-op run, which was nice. The morning, however, in no way prepared me for the rest of the day. The 3 year old lost a nut under one of the couches, and since housemom was busy, I proclaimed myself a professional and rescued it (along with a dozen marbles and an entire colony of dust bunnies!). Everyone ate at the cafe today, except for the family and myself, and so I reveled in the mac 'n cheese and chicken hotdogs. (Still...which parts...?)

During rest hour I actually spent most of my time finishing up a pet project. It's a very simple, but nice looking copper bracelet. I used the idiot's delight/byzantine weave, and I think it's perfectly charming. I'd considered adding some beads, but I'm not sure that I will. Anyhow...the afternoon...

Usually I'm the first one to the co-op, and have to wait for a key for several minutes. Today it got downright ridiculous, so I ended up having to run to a nearby house for their neighborhood co-op key. I then found out one of the co-workers was sick, and that the other (though he begged that he had no true reason) had had a rough morning. During this time, I had a minor conversation altercation with one of the people I work and live with. She utterly refused to drop the argument, and at one point got physical. It was very trying and eventually the other co-worker/manager guy worked out a system so I could be in a separate part of the building because: she would NOT leave me alone and drop the subject. It was very frustrating, and I'm not sure what to do about it. Apparently it will be discussed later, as this sort of thing has been an on-going issue.

On a completely unrelated note, I called a wishy-washy German (who can easily drive me crazy) a stupid goat - in German. Not exactly what he was expecting. Hopefully he took it in the way that I meant it (purely joking, with a slight edge of frustration...), but I must remember that it's probably not as funny to Germans as it is to Americans...

Made a mess of the day...didn't I?

Hope all is well (and better...),

Monday, February 8, 2010

So, I have an Assistant...

Hi all,

Who'd have thought, that a mere 6 months after gradation that I'd have a position with an assistant?!? Granted, that "position" is cook for the lunch meal and my assistant mainly helps with chopping vegetables, but it's a start! Mostly, it just makes me giggle...

Today I had to run the the admin building to get my flier posted off for carnival. It printed pretty well, and although it had WAY too much clip art to be considered anything near nice, it did the job. I also helped the visitor find the way, only to find out that the tour wouldn't be given for another hour and a half. She managed to get there by herself (after a few helpful hints and a turnaround or two) and definitely has a courageous spirit.

We were a bit concerned when we didn't see her back for lunch, but apparently some wires got crossed and she ate at a different house. I've enjoyed her company. She's got a good sense of humor and we have the whole "midwestern girl" background going on. I think she's going through swings of feeling like she's fitting in and then not. Orientation would be a good example of "not". The Germans are a strange breed, and I once again had to kick an introduction into being. Plus, half of them slept through the Woodstock film, including the guy who recommended it for the carnival theme! (Maddening...). However, we had a good time at tea-time - although there were some rather dubious "muffins". They reminded me slightly of the cuffins I made in Germany. He hadn't greased the pan, and that was just the beginning. The tops were crisp like sugar cookies, the bottoms stuck, and consisted of blueberries surrounding a chunk of bittersweet chocolate. When I asked if he used a reciped, I got "". Despite all of this, they were definitely edible. An interesting food experience. And hey, at least he baked!

I was late for dinner, because I'm a robot. Rather, I escorted our visitor to another house (quite a ways away) and forgot I was supposed to back-track to pick up the milk bucket. I was about 50 feet away from home when I realized it. And although the milk pails aren't extremely heavy, I could really use a back rub at this point...sigh. Tomorrow is another day, and it's still quite impractical to have a bicycle!

Hope all is well,

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Book Barn

Hi all,

I know, I know...two picture days in a row! Shocking, isn't it? Today, a new friend (we can be official because we're FB friends...) took me to the "Book Barn". Which, true to the name, is actually an old converted barn that now is filled wall-to-wall with books. Doesn't that even sound amazing?!?

Obviously, I had a wonderful job! She laughed that I got 8 books, but that's even after I carefully considered more and limited myself! I must admit, I was a little disappointed in the sparse science fiction section, but I still drudged up some decent Ray Bradbury - a novel even! I'll be a happy girl for a while!

So that, not the screaming children at 7:30..., was my high light of the day. I spent a good portion of the day shut up in my room making myself work on my jewelry. I do enjoy it, but it always takes me some effort to start it up and just do it. The tool magic is amazing, but unfortunately it only works for 3-4 hours at a time until it starts to tear through. It's greatly reduced the scratches on my jump rings though, so that's really nice.

We also got a potential co-worker visitor today. She'll be staying for a week and using our house as a home base. She's blind, and so this is a trial run to see if she'd be able to stay here and contribute as a co-worker. It's a very good experience, because as the population ages, there could be many residents who will suffer considerable loss of vision. We can see what potential problems and solutions could be found out before it becomes an issue. I'm trying to stay very neutral, because I know my opinion will be asked at the end of the visit.

Other than that (and a tasty dinner...beef soup and super brownies...) my day was pretty uneventful. So, yeah...

Hope all is well,

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I've Got the WHOLE World (In My Room)

Hi all,

I was disappointed to find out that Denmark has released Greenland (as of 2008??) and thus my map is outdated. Oh well. I finally got around to taking pictures of my room today. Along with getting that mirror put up on that wall. Yes, I know it's enormous, but they don't have anywhere else to store it... I also got a bed frame that actually fits my bed, before there was about 4-6 inches hanging off each side. Made sitting down a little dangerous!

As you can see, I also have my posters up. However, the one in the middle is merely a place-holder. I'm still waiting for the poster my brother is going to send to me. One of these days...
Before, my bed used to have the head near the shelf to the left. This left no space for where my desk currently is:
Amazingly, this is the most-cluttered place in my room.

Other than cleaning and putting things together today, my day was rather uneventful. I participated in "Bible Evening" and almost laughed when "prosecuting Christians" became a central theme. Clearly, I am not mature enough to handle such serious discussions.

Oh. We also made some Valentines today. Because I am awesome and have construction paper, glue and crayons. I am very put-out with Rose Art though, the tip off the red crayon fell off as soon as it touched the paper! Wonder if I can get a free box of crayons out of it? I'll just have to claim I can't return it easily as I live on a commune, should be a good conversation.

I'm super-excited to actually have a plan for tomorrow, and the fact that I can hopefully pick up a few books! Not that I have a lot of time to read them, but having them around is always nice. So yeah...until then!

Hope all is well,

Friday, February 5, 2010

Attack of the Killer Squirrel

Hi all,

Not that I'm ever prone to exaggeration or anything, right? However, I did have a scary run-in with a large squirrel today. I was in the co-op with only one villager this afternoon, as the other two co-workers were off doing other things. It was going fine. I'd gotten the produce in and had gotten it put away. Whenever the produce comes, they leave the "loading dock" doors open and a squirrel likes to come into the dry storage room. When I walked in, to convince the villager to go break down boxes, I thought I heard rustling by the door. There's a table at waist-level, so I reached over and shifted a large grain bag. Nothing. I walked in two minutes later, and repeated the action:


The squirrel EXPLODED out from behind the bag, whizzing past my face. So I did what any sensible person would do: I screamed loudly. Who knows how many innocent lives were saved by my warning, though by my estimates I'd say 3. The villager then stated, with a look of grave concern on her face:

"I'm not going in there..."

To which I replied:

"I'm not either! This is why we have men around: not because I couldn't handle it, but because I don't want to!"

She then rehashed the incident for anyone who wandered in. Way to go, Steph.

I did, however, make a killer blueberry crisp today, to fulfill "Oats". We had a very simple meal - and apparently the other co-worker had been whining that we never get anything "normal" because of the grains. He might have gotten a bit of an earful and slight telling off about who'd be doing their own cooking if they had complaints...He was all smiles after spaghetti and the crisp though. It was excellent.

Anyhow, I thought I had something else that was particularly witty to remark on...but my brain is dead. Perhaps you'll get it tomorrow...

Hope all is well,

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Ms. Popular?

Hi all,

Some of you may have noticed the lovely spam comments I've gotten lately. Thankfully it's only been 2 so far, but I hope it won't grow. I'm a bit conflicted. It makes me feel good that my blog is popular enough to get hit (because once is random, twice is not, right??), but it's a pain and a disappointment to see that they're not actual comments. I may still survive.

Today I had a break from lunch, but still ended up doing a lot of prep for it out of boredom. I did a co-op run, and ran into one of the villagers who likes to tell everyone they should get married (and then get a boyfriend...). However, today he got interrupted half-way through, the third time, and ended up saying "You should marry a girl!". Another quick-tongued co-worker retorted: "That's very progressive of you!" I'll still, unfortunately, have to pass...

We had rye-loaf again for lunch, and I still thought it was delicious. My poor future children will probably whine that they want "normal" meatloaf. Too bad, spawn. I also fetched the milk pails, which is something my back would appreciate me not volunteering for anymore.

My afternoon was spent in a new co-worker training course. Oddly enough, most of what we talked about was boundaries and sex. My favorite part though, was the horrified reaction of the poor Korean girl when we described ticks and poison ivy. I mean, we're used to it (although PI climbs trees here...proof that MN is actually more civilized??) but it does sound a bit intimidating to describe blood-sucking animals that can cause lyme disease. It also got me a pass from the co-op, although I did pop by at the end and contributed to a small ruckus. Not many bags of chips were harmed in the event!

In other thrilling news, I finally got to use the washer. House mom has been freaking and washing everything within sight. I also get to go and get officially checked tomorrow. No one else in the house (that still lives here...) has it, so I'm thinking I'll be fine. *knocking*

On that pleasant note..
Hope all is well,

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Hi all,

Yes, what a thrilling topic! However, apparently there has been cases around the other houses (and in the schools?) and house mom found one on her and some on several of the kids. Luckily, the rest of the house seems to be ok. The family has pretty much their own wing, so it's pretty contained. House mom was freaking out earlier, which was slightly funny to me. Being the daughter of a school nurse (hearing lots of backlash from PTA meetings...), I know how little a deal it is. Not that it's not frustrating and a pain to treat, but it's hardly the mark of a dirty person.

Anyhow, the neighborhood meeting was canceled today in favor of a "Master Plan" meeting. So, other than the drama of the head lice, I still managed to get a nice nap in. Yes, you should all be extremely jealous...

Other than that, today wasn't extremely eventful. Oh, except for the beets. Yes, despite having lived in a town that processed them, I think I had managed up to this point in my life to have avoided eating them. It was especially funny because house mom and I had discussed how I'd like to live my whole life eating from a separated tray, and then: she had my beets touching the stir fry!!! It was slightly traumatic. I found out, (though I did give them a fair try) that I do not care for beets. I'd tried a piece raw yesterday, but this sealed the deal. I managed to choke them down, drowned in my honey mustard dressing, but next time I shall pass. Blech.

So, yeah, yet another post with food as a topic...

Hope all is well,

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Hi all,

Hey look! A PICTURE! Remember that whole thing-I-did-last-night-that-I'll-tell-you-tomorrow?
That'd be it. Hopefully you can see at least a good portion of the 30-40 snow angels I ended up making last night. I'd planned to go out and gaze at the stars from the pond, so I'd dressed warmly. Then I remembered that I'd promised KT a snow angel. So I made a drove of them. Giggling inanely to myself pretty much the entire time. By the end my arms and legs were tired from flailing and every time I got up was a major effort.

I was very pleased with myself.

God liked them so much, he decided to snow on them this afternoon. They are now gone. An hour of my life that I won't get back, but I think well spent!!!

Today I pretty much ran the co-op as the main person and the other co-worker both weren't there. Despite it (or because of?) being delivery day, there was plenty to do and keep us busy. A regular whirlwind of efficiency. And no squabbling, which was nice.

An amusing part of the day happened at dinner. We had a guest over and I put her next to one of our house villagers. The former really talks a lot (and so does ours, which takes a lot longer with her stuttering and repeating everything that we say...arg!) and soon the other one was telling her to be quiet. Although woe be unto us should we ever say it to her. I may have pointed that out...

We also celebrated Candlemas, with the land work groups leading a little processional in the hall and talking about the upcoming planting and work season. We got a packet of seeds, which may lead to something orange??
We also went to the new green house before hand and looked at everyone's transparencies. Apparently not only my house mom went completely obsessive over it (despite it supposing to be a collective house effort...), and some of them were quite lovely. They were mostly 70 by 35 inches. So huge.

Anyhow, I'm out of steam and actually need to go to bed tonight!

Hope all is well,

Monday, February 1, 2010

Daddy, What's a Virgin?

Hi all...

Oh, the fun questions that you get to field from an 8 year old. Luckily, I wasn't the one asked, because I don't think I would have answered the same way (well, probably not at all...). Since the kids go to a Waldorf school, they really try to shelter them in order to preserve their childhood. Whether or not this is a great idea, I'm not sure, but I do know that the majority of children seem to be losing out on having a quality childhood, so I'm not going to judge.

Today was a long day, and I only managed some minor shenanigans. More on that tomorrow. Anyhow, the morning seemed long because we had left overs and all I made was a carrot salad. I also finished up my Black Forest Cake, which was definitely a hit at the orientation group tea time. We had a new co-worker today (another Americorps, but with dual German/US citizenship) and it was weird again. We had a guest speaker on bee hives, although I'd also been asked to prepare from a book I'd been lent only last night. It was fascinating, but I think most of the people was completely out of the loop.

Like the poor new guy. The leader didn't even think to introduce himself or us, so after the guest speaker was done I took the initiative. I passed around the paper for people to write names and houses and then made us go around and verbally introduce. It was very funny, people acted as though they'd never done it before: "What should I say?!?" "Um, your name, where you're from...something about you??" Very literal. Name and country. It's a start?

Also had someone from the one isolated house in Hudson come over for lunch and rest hour, which was nice. She's very down to Earth and easy going. She's also a good back up for keeping everyone else a little grounded. We're having a Carneval (Carnaval? spelling seems to differ) and working on a theme - Woodstock? However, things seem to be a little convoluted, and someone thought we should put leis on people as they came in (although they didn't seem to know about Mardi Gras beads...). So that joke fell flat...

Anyhow, I'm utterly exhausted right now, and ready to curl up and pass out.

Hope all is well,

PS. I just remembered that I woke myself up last night by politely sleep talking out loud:
"I'm sorry, I would really prefer Not to try milking the Pig...."