Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Northwest Oakie Migration

One of the best things about being born at the tail end of the baby boom is that growing up, there were tons of kids in the neighborhood. I always felt bad for my kids as I raised them in the house I grew up in, because all the kids were gone and the neighborhood was filled mostly with parents of the kids I grew up with. But I digress.
Here is the Del Rey Oaks roster of my friends when I was a kid. None of these people lived more than 2 blocks away. And there were plenty more that I didn't hang out with.

Girls: Karen, Frances, Lori, Roxanne, Janet, Kerry, Chris.

Boys: Garth, Joey, Steven, Tommy, Charlie, Billy, David, 2 Mikes, Scott, 2 Matts, Jimmy.

As I grew up, I held on to many of these childhood friends (mostly the boy ones). They all dropped the Y from their names and now my adult neighborhood friends go by Joe, Jim, Tom, Bill, and Steve. David is still David. And Mike is still Mike. And I have digressed again.

Here's the point. Last night I got a phone call from Bill. He found my number through David, who got it from my ex. It seems that Bill now lives in Hayden, Idaho. Which is like half an hour from here! This is exciting news, now I have 2 Del Rey Oakies in my new neighborhood, Steve and Bill. And we're working on getting Mike to move up here, we think he will one of these days. I cannot tell you how comforted I am by having these 2 guys close to me up here, since I am away from all of my family. And once an Oakie, always an Oakie, so we are bonded for life. And that is a very good feeling.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Things I Learned Yesterday

1) Stateline, Idaho is not really a town, it is really just about a mile of bars, strip clubs, liquor stores and smoke shops. Well, maybe it's a town, but I didn't see any houses.
2) At my new pedicure shop in Coeur d'Alene, designs on your toes are $5 extra.
3) There is this cheese you can grill on the grill called Halloumi, it's awesome!
4) Some red wines actually taste good.
5) The Scoop ice cream shop is open till 9pm on weeknights.
6) It only costs $20 to legally change your name.
7) Once Mozilla Firefox erases your bookmarks, you cannot get them back.
8) I am a yarn-obsessed lunatic.
9) Grilling is not as hard as I thought.
10) I have actual friends here in Spokane.

Oh yeah, and I learned all about Wobbly Hedgehog Syndrome, what a trip!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Ugly-A$$ Chickens Have Come Home To Roost

Isn't that how the saying goes? Here is my chicken story. After my brother died I went down to CA for a week and stayed at his house with my sister and prepared for his big memorial hippie party. Now, you have to have known Rick or been to his house to understand fully what I mean when I say that he was the biggest packrat ever. He was an artist and therefore saw beauty in unlikely things, all of which found their way into his house and cluttered every space in every room. I noted this while I was down there as I looked on a shelf which had a beautifully intricate carved stone vase, right next to the ugliest ceramic chickens I have ever seen. Rick appreciated the beauty in everything and if something didn't have a story to go along with it, he made one up, which just made everything appealing. I'm sure the ugly-ass chickens had a story, but I never heard it. Anyway, I made this comment to my sister using the vase and chickens as examples.

Flash forward to last weekend in San Jose at my sister's house. She says that she has put together a box of mementos from my brothers house for me and the boys, and that I had to take everything that was in the box. This should have been my first clue that there was something in the box that perhaps I would not want. I'm sure you can all guess what was in the box.

You can click on the picture to make them even uglier. Apparently, grief is not enough for our family to lose our sense of humor.

So, I am now the proud owner of the ugliest ceramic chickens in history. They roost in a high place of honor in my living room, on my built-in entertainment center/fireplace. I mean, this is where the Baby Jesus sits in his manger at Christmastime! And now, they have a story, maybe not the one my brother told, but one that's special because it connects me to him.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

The Weekend

Our trip to California was fast but good. On Friday we got to go to Monterey for almost four hours! The boys had lunch with their dad and I had lunch with my niece Nichole and her family. We went to my favorite place, Turtle Bay Taqueria in Seaside. I had my usual shrimp bowl, boy do I miss it. I also got a chance to go to my brother's house. When he died in February, Nichole and my grandniece Kristina inherited his house. He was an artist, and therefore didn't have much money to upkeep his home, so it was pretty ramshackle. Nichole and her husband Eduardo are doing a great job fixing it up.

There is not much left to remind me of my brother. Nichole is making it her own and that is how it should be. We had a nice visit in the sunny front yard, and we got to meet their new dog Skippy. Skippy is a miniature chihuahua. Max liked him a lot.


Just kidding!

The afternoon was capped off with some cheers led by my 6 year old grandniece Eraya, who is captain of her playground cheer squad, the Honkeys.

The Captain of The Honkeys

After some clapping, stomping and yelling "Go Honkeys!" it was time for us to leave Monterey and head up to San Jose and the wedding festivities.

Friday night and all day Saturday were spent doing wedding stuff, which included actually going to the wedding. It was very beautiful. Jenny and Jeremy make a great couple, very well suited to each other, and I wish them a lifetime of happiness together.

After the wedding everyone went back to my sister's house for a big party which was a great time to catch up with my nephew Jason and his wife Jamie. A fun time was had by all.

Then this morning we were back on the plane to Spokane. Here is what we discovered at 35,000 feet:

The chewy granola bars that Southwest gives out for snacks look very much like turds.

So that's it. Now we are home, well, we are back in Spokane anyway, Monterey will always be home, if only for four hours.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Totally Unprepared

Early tomorrow morning we leave for the wedding in California. I have I done anything to prepare? NO!! And I am blaming the weather. It has been so nice in the evenings that all week we have been sitting on the porch, or walking along the bluff, or playing basketball, whatever, just being outside and relishing the warm evenings. So tonight I have a list as long as my arm of things to do before we go, things that I can't put off any longer, like packing and doing the dishes. UGH!

In more exciting bird news, I heard the woodpecker yesterday morning so I ran outside to see if he was on the roof or inside the attic, and he was on the roof! So I ran inside to get the camera but he flew away. Here is where he was, pecking on that pipe.

Also here is a pic of my porch in the morning sun.

To all my friends in Monterey, I am so sorry that there is no time to visit, as I will be on the peninsula for only 4 hours tomorrow from noon till about 4 pm. I miss you all and will try to catch you on the next trip down, thanksgiving perhaps?

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Weekend Wrap Up

1) When I went to pick Faythe up for the Garden Expo yesterday I noticed that one of her neighbors had a giant pink tree in their yard so I asked her to take a picture of it and she did and here it is.

There are lots of these trees in bloom right now in Spokane. I do not know what kind of tree it is, but I want one in my yard. Now.

2) To commemorate Mothers Day, the boys and I watched "Yo Mama" on MTV. This is a show where young urban people insult each other with Yo Mama jokes and other various put downs. It is supposed to be funny, but usually the insults are pretty lame. However, this one made me laugh. "Your room smells like you washed your sheets in hot dog water!" I'm cracking up right now! I'm sure I will have the opportunity to use that line on my kids one of these days.

3)Hope you all had a great Mothers Day.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Mixed Emotions

Next weekend we will be travelling to California to attend my nephew Jeremy's wedding. This is a very happy occasion and I am glad to be seeing my family even if it is for less than 48 hours. Here is the bad part. It falls on the weekend of the Spokane Lilac Parade, which I have been looking forward to attending since before I moved up here. Bummer, man!

This weekend however, is another story. Tomorrow Faythe and I are going to the Spokane Garden Expo. Hopefully the lady that sells the heirloom tomato plants will be there, and also I would like to get some dahlias to plant. Maybe even a lilac! I know what you're thinking, "But Karla, I thought you didn't have any more room to plant stuff in your yard!". Think again, my friends! Because my Mother's Day present from my children is that they are going to dig up part of the lawn so I can have more flower beds, which I am very excited about!
And then on Mothers Day I get to go with some fun girls on a wine tasting expedition. So it's fun fun fun for the next two weekends, woo hoo!

Happy Mothers Day you muthas!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


1) I think there are birds living in our attic. We stuffed towels in the hole and the birds took them out. They are probably woodpeckers. This is problematic for a number of reasons. Plan B involves stuffing steel wool in the hole, I hear the birds don't like it.
2) One of the cooks at Hu Hot sucks. He burns the food, and doesn't know how to chop stuff up very well. I would say that I understand because he's new, but he's not new anymore. I don't want him touching my food.
3) This was said by me, out loud to no one, yesterday as I left work. "It's warm out, and it smells like bread, I'm so happy!" Apparently, it's not just potatoes that make me feel happiness.
4) The Morrissey show was awesome! I have mad love for that whiny sad guy. No one else can sing about death and loneliness to upbeat pop music like him. Go find "Life Is A Pigsty" and listen to it and you will know what I mean.
5) Still crocheting like a madwoman. If you want to see, there will be pics on my new blog soon.
6) There is no 6, I'm done.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


The Ice Cream Truck just went by the house! Winter is gone, for this week at least. It's really pretty here right now. The trees are green again and the spring bulbs are abloom. According to the locals, it is safe to plant outside after Mother's Day. Well, that is next weekend, so it's almost time for the tomatoes and flowers to go outside!

I have been doing a lot of crocheting and not much else lately. But tonight is the Morrissey show, Leo and I are going. It is Leo's first concert. My kids have it so much better than I did in that department. My mom would never have taken me to see Morrissey. Some German polka band, maybe, but that's it.

OK I'm done. I will write more tomorrow. Maybe. If I'm not crocheting.