pen_grunt: (Modern Times)
Watching Project Runway got me thinking (I know, like whoa man). I've always wanted to know how to sew/design my own clothing. That seems like such a self-sufficient, neat thing to know how to do. I then started thinking about all the other things that I need to learn. I would say that I needed to learn them before I die, but that sounds very fatalistic, and with my level of procrastination that would leave me with about 2 years of heavy education in my late 80's.

Without further delay, the things I want/need to learn how to do:

-Design and Sew stuff
-Knit, crochet and embroider properly
-Play the piano well
-Swim
-Play a stringed instrument
-Speak another (additional) language proficiently
-Cook (properly, with REAL spices and stuff)
-Paint (again, properly)
-Make pottery and mess with clay in a productive way
-Take really good photos
-Be a photoshop captain (not just an fumbly-type ensign)
-Dance properly and all fancy-like
-Yoga
-Martial Arts
-Interior design
-Scrapbooking in some kind of meaningful way
-Create book bindings (make my own hardcover books from current paperbacks)
-Play the Harmonica

I'll add to this throughout the day as I think of more things. Methinks I need to take some classes here.

Edits in Italics

I'm not saying that I don't have talents--I can do a lot of neat things (like playing the sax, writing decently, running semi-long distances, reading good books, making my niece laugh, figuring out computer stuff quickly, doing arts-n-crafts, knowing lots o' stuff about plants, etc). So I'm not being all about the, "I'm not good enough"--it's just that I want to learn MORE. Always more. :)
pen_grunt: (Wild Thing)
Ahh, to wake up to 8 inches of freshly fallen snow is a rare treat in March. Scratch that, it's pretty much EXPECTED in March. Kinda like mother nature giving you one last kick in the pants before letting the crocuses come up.

It really was rather beautiful. I didn't even somuch mind that I had a 3 hour commute (normally a 20 minute commute) or that my route could only be explained in diagrams, clicks and whistles (uhh...3 bus--yes, bus--pileup on a 4 lane highway...the lords of chaos rejoice, "What fun!"). By the end of the day St. Paul got about 10-12 inches of wet, heavily compacted snow. The kind that comes down in clumps instead of flakes and sticks on EVERYTHING (only to fall off in sheets and hit small children on the head later).

I have reaffirmed that there is absolutely no greater joy in life than coming inside after being out in the snow. There is no greater warmth or comfort than walking through the door, soaking wet, into a warm kitchen and being able to immediately strip off all clothing and hang it on a warm radiator. It's the same principle as, "Those who are denied no pleasure never truly experience pleasure." I was outside shoveling (in what the locals call "heart-attack snow"). Certain parts of my body always get cold (i.e. the toes, the fingers and the butt--don't ask me why my butt ALWAYS gets cold) and certain parts are too warm and sweaty (for indeed, shoveling snow really is difficult work). But there's nothing like seeing the physical accomplishment of a sidewalk shoveled--the pristine blanket of snow undisturbed save for your path. There's nothing like that first step in the door, feeling accomplished, rosy-cheeked, drippy and so totally alive that you want to breath more deeply just to savor the experience. Ah well, perhaps it's just a cold climate thing.

Weekend Book Reviews )

Thrift Store Finds )
pen_grunt: (Prettyfull pic)
Things come in threes. Today I managed to bite my tongue (so hard that it bled and swelled--leaving me with an oh-so-charming lisp), burn my hand (with my morning oatmeal--enough to leave blisters), and finally, I wrecked something in the arch of my foot while running tonight.

I desperately needed a good, long, soapy, bubbly, hot bath. Which got me thinking. Most adults don't take baths nearly as often as I do now. I can only theorize that this is because baths were a treat when I was growing up--we didn't have a bath tub (or rather, we had one, but it wasn't hooked up and was usually filled with implements of construction). This got me thinking about other unusual things I didn't have while growing up (for the better, mostly). Without further adieu, the top 10 things I didn't have while growing up:

1. Baths
2. Electricity upstairs--until I was maybe eight or so (we had to leave the bathroom door open so we could see when we went, and we had to pick out our clothes the day before school to make sure they matched).
3. A finished house (you took your shoes off at your own peril)
4. Close neighbors
5. Cable TV (or decent reception on the network channels)
6. Video game systems (although we did have a Commodore 64...and it rocked my world)
7. A little brother or sister (and I really, really wanted someone to pick on :( )
8. A dish washer, a clothes washing machine, or a dryer
9. Filtered water (heh, all three women in the house were blond...and our hair used to turn orange with rust and mineral buildup)
10. Central heat/air (wood stoves still rock...)

I think I'm a better person because of what we didn't have. Granted, we "had" a lot of things, and were very fortunate, but I'm just amused at the seemingly "normal" things absent from my childhood. What was missing from your life?

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