Fancy Coffee Friday: Dirty Talk

Let me start off with saying, “Mom – cover your eyes.”  Now that that is out of the way…

I am not a fan of talking dirty.  Oh, I’m foul-mouthed to be sure and have said that I swear more that my dear friend who is a sailor, but “dirty talk” is beyond me.  When I watch movies where people talk dirty to each other, in person or on the phone, I squirm at the whole idea, and the uncomfortable nature of people pretending to be what they aren’t.  If it doesn’t roll right off the tongue, it’s not genuine and being the genuine person that I am, disingenuous behavior makes me uncomfortable.

Okay, Mom, you can uncover your eyes now.

That brings me to the other night.  There I was, in the garden picking beans and my mouth was watering at the thought of steaming those little, green beauties and tossing them in some melted bacon fat and with fresh thyme from the next bed over.  I looked at them lustily, craving their taste.  I wanted them in my mouth with a passion that was heated and which seared me to my very core.

And then I spied them.  Weeks ago they were tiny and cute, but now?  Now, they were bigger than I could hold in my hands.  I moved my eyes over them and whispered, “You are the most luscious melons I have ever seen.  Grow…. grow bigger… become sweet and juicy, for I must taste you.”  And I pictured myself burying my face into their seedless glory…. for I was growing watermelons this year and they had gone forth and reproduced.

But did it stop there?  Oh no.  Grape tomatoes had been coming of age for a few days and I’d been relishing them with abandon, but there it was…. a beefsteak-type tomato.  She was big, pink and slowly reaching the age of consent ahead of her estimated 15 pounds of sisters.  She was a German Queen, an heirloom variety and I gazed at her longingly and whispered, “Soon I will have you.”  My fingers lightly brushed her leaves and I felt a shudder and I began to hunger for her taste on a much deeper, far more inappropriate, level.

And then it occurred to me…. it wasn’t that I didn’t talk dirty, it was that I only talked dirty where I found it most fitting:  to the plants in my garden.  My fingers encased in nitrile-dipped gardening gloves as I pulled weeds and picked veggies from dirt I’d been farming for a few years, encouraging the plants to burst forth in an abundance of delicious produce.  I wiped another mosquito from my brow.  I licked my lips as I picked up my bowl of green beans.  Soon…. very soon, they would be mine. My conquest would be complete.

And now I smell like tomato and cilantro… all I need is a little jalapeno and you can call me Pico de Gallo!  A spicy little number.

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Fancy Frappe Friday: How Friendships are Born

BEHOLD!  The power of frappe!  It matters not that it's just my usual "Baby Grasshopper" all whizzed up in a blender.  I'm not in a rut!

BEHOLD! The power of frappe! It matters not that it’s just my usual “Baby Grasshopper” all whizzed up in a blender. I’m not in a rut! (Thanks to HostGator for the BlogHer ’14 swag. How do you like that product placement for a product I don’t even use? Pretty awesome, right?)


I am a joyful person.

I’m a joyful person plagued with an “angry, bitchy resting face” who usually keeps to herself because…. I like myself.  Okay, that and many other people irritate the shit out of me what with their “my life is so haaaarrrrrrrd” kind of horse-pucky… But I digress, let me get back to joyful.  Anyhoo!



I’m a surprisingly optimistic person.  The glass is half full.  The clouds are lined with silver.  Pots of gold are found at the ends of the rainbows.  There is always a bright side.  You get the idea.  I’d have kept going but I ran out of expressions of optimism.  My sunny outlook on life means I attract all kinds of people, even with my “angry, bitchy resting face”.  Most of the people who I attract fall into two categories:  those that really need to talk to a professional therapist/psychologist/psychiatrist and not me because I’m not a professional and those that are resilient, optimistic folks.  I prefer the latter to the former.



I like resilient, optimistic people.  I don’t mind if they are also cynics (I’m pretty cynical for an optimistic person) because I tend to see the cynics as realists and I enjoy the company of realists.  That probably plays into the the fact that I’m analytical and logical which is rooted in reality.  So, color-me-happy when at BlogHer ’14, which took place in hot-and-sunny San Jose, California, last weekend, I met some wonderful people with whom I had some lovely chats and some great laughs.  We chatted about life and our blogs (of course), addictions to cookbook collecting, bacon and how I’m allergic to everything (not really…. but it sure does seem like it).

Now that I think about it, the BlogHer ’14 Conference may have also counted as my very first “TweetUp” and I didn’t even come away feeling violated. BONUS!

One subject that came up was my “Fancy Coffee Friday” posts and their title.  I was asked what I had against frappuccinos (nothing – except I’d rather get my coffee drinks here than there…that would be Starbucks) by a man known as Sisyphus on Twitter at @SrslyAmusing (how could I NOT follow someone with that handle!).  Now, Barriques doesn’t have their fancy coffee drink menu posted online – I’ve asked for it to be done so I can sway my coworkers to get their drinks from Barriques vs the ubiquitous Starbucks – but they haven’t.  So anyway, some intelligent soul snapped a photo of one of the Barriques locations fancy coffee drink menu and I saw “frappe” and I thought, “I can’t call today’s post “Fancy Frappuccino Friday” if I’m going to have a Frappe!”  Besides, Starbucks probably trademarked that drink name and then I’d have to pay royalties or some other such silliness if I used it for today’s post’s title.  So, to Sisyphus – thank you for shaking up my Fancy Coffee Friday and this was a very long-winded post about absolutely nothing just to say:  I’ll see your Frappuccino and raise you a Frappe.


P.S. If you’re reading this, we had a conversation at BlogHer ’14 and I didn’t call you out on this post… just wait!

P.P.S. Friendships are made from good burns and playing Marco Polo during conferences that don’t live up to their hype.

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Fancy Coffee Friday: Sandfly Scourge… Or how I channeled Angelina Jolie

This past Saturday, Mr. Muse, a couple friends and I, spent a lovely afternoon-into-“prevening” on the Wisconsin River, kayaking, drinking adult beverages (Johnny Appleseed Hard Cider in 16 oz cans for me), stopping at sandbars and having discussions of the philosophical and not-so-philosophical kind.  The river was packed with weekend canoist-campers, many of whom were numerous-adult-beverages-in-the-bag before we shoved off into the water.  The weather was lovely, the sun came out and visited frequently in between hazy, somewhat overcast, moments and I didn’t end up looking like a wiener overcooked on the campfire.

After our friends headed home, Mr. Muse and I worked outside for a little while and I received what I thought were a couple of mosquito bites on the face.  Not a big deal; being allergic to insect repellent makes getting bitten an expectation rather than a rarity.  That all changed when I woke up Sunday morning looking like half of my forehead had turned Neanderthal overnight and that I suddenly developed a goiter on my neck.  I tried to think if I’d been bitten by a horse fly (green or black) or a deer fly, but I knew that whatever had bitten me was small enough that I mistook them for mosquitoes.  By Sunday evening the swelling on my forehead and neck had gone down and Monday morning it appeared that all things were back to normal.

Then, Monday night as I was finishing up evening chores, I stepped out of the barn with my container of scratch feed for the Happy Chickens and felt a sharp pain on my lower lip.  Licking quickly out of reflex, I caught up the offender and spit it out without looking at it right at the moment I noticed the local Chief of Police had pulled in and was walking toward me with a flyer in hand.  Mr. Muse had noticed the Chief pull in as well and joined us at the barn gate, chatting about this-n-that, including the reason for the flyer, and as we chatted I could feel the bite on my lip swelling larger and larger.  After the Chief left, I finished up chores and headed into the house straight to the mirror where I was at once crestfallen and amused that I looked like I had just took a punch to the kisser.  By bedtime I looked like I’d received a collagen injection on the right side of my lower lip.

I treated with some oral analgesic, hoping that would take care of the pain of the bite (it did), and really hoping it would help bring down the swelling (it didn’t).  When I awoke Tuesday morning, I could only laugh as my normally full-kisser was looking like I was hoping to imitate Angelina Jolie’s pillowy-pucker.  Thankfully, after a good hour-long stint on the treadmill the swelling had gone down considerably and as I approached lunchtime, my lip was approaching it’s usual size.

Researching online, I brought up the Sandfly/Sand Flies aka way-too-many-colloquial-names-to-list-here and discovered that if you’re allergic to their bite, the swelling I experienced was mild (some people continue to have swelling for 2 weeks!).  Also, next time – I’ll dose myself with Benedryl.

So, beware my dear readers!  The Sandfly Scourge is upon us!  Protect yourselves!

As for me, I think it’s about time I invest in a No-See-Um netted hat for being outside while it’s Sandfly Season.  No offence to Angelina Jolie, but I think her lips look better on her than they do on me.

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Fancy Coffee Friday: Ponderous

wpid-img_20140620_081805.jpgI have spent the last couple weeks pondering a great deal about what I want to do next with my life (take over the world), what makes me really happy (writing and being at home), how can I squeeze more blood out of the rock that is my average day (impossible) and how on Earth I can actually get in a solid eight hours of sleep (get ready for bed starting at 7 PM instead of 8 which I usually fail at anyway… yeah, I know).

Besides all of that, I’ve been doing a lot of reading about blogging.  How to write better.  How to make time to write.  When to write.  Where to write.  What to write about.  And I’ve come to the conclusion that I love my blog and the writing that I get to do, even if it’s not always the best I can do.  I’m working on that.

I’ve thought about my strong suits for writing.  I’ve considered the “theme days” I have which really aren’t even themes with perhaps the exception of MLiP Wednesdays (that would be: My Life in Pictures) where I try to post a decent photo I’ve taken with a story about it.  I’ve considered what people in my life have told me about my writing, too.  Some have loved my fiction (not posted here) and commented that I write it very well, that I have a way with words.  Others love the style on this blog, commenting that it’s like reading a letter from a friend – that I make people feel like what I write is just for them.

I’m bombarded with messages from blogging sites that I should be catering to the whims of my public.  Does that mean I should suddenly start blogging about being a mom (I’m missing that gene) and children because I’ve suddenly acquired a few dozen “Mommy Bloggers” on Twitter?  Hell no.  That would make me a sell-out; but of course – if someone out there wants to pay me to write blogs about mothering and kids… I’ll do it.  Money talks.

I guess that last sentence leads me to the next thing I’m good at – telling it like it is.  I have never considered myself popular or a member of cliques.  I shun them.  I prefer being the “Woman in Black”, the black sheep, the person at the far end of the bar or in the corner who really doesn’t give a shit if people don’t like what I think, say or do.  I’ve never been a good people-pleaser; I’ve always been much better at doing whatever the hell I want as long as nobody gets hurt.  Being an outlier suits me well and I will tell people “how it is” if I need to.

So what does that mean for this blog?  Maybe nothing.  I might very well continue on with my present course of writing when I can about topics that matter to me.  Then again, maybe it means that once in a while I reveal a little bit more about myself that makes people sit back and think, “Wow… I would never have thought…”

Why?  Because life is simple but humans are complicated, so we make life complicated.  Because what we look like on the outside may not match what is on the inside.  Because I like to instigate conversations that make people uncomfortable and make them think.  Because I detest following the crowd.  Because ultimately – I’m complicated, just like each and every person who may end up reading this blog.  I’m not special, unique – yes, but not special.  Nobody is.  But yet, we’re all complicated.

Ponder that.

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Fancy Coffee Friday: Feels like Sunday

The wind rushed through the opening in the car window as Mr. Muse and I made our way along the back roads on a much-needed frozen custard run.  The custard – it called to us, well mostly him – Mr. Muse was going to go whether or not I was joining him.  Who was I to pass up the opportunity for a Turtle Sundae though?

We’d been working at our To Do Lists since morning, though each time I went back to my list to check something off I ended up writing down another item to the end.  Completion of the ever-growing list was becoming something of a myth though I did manage to finish a lot of it (even this blog post once I hit “publish”).  I even made sure to put on a few items that were “for fun” like finishing a book (did it) and watching the newest arrival from Netflix (not done yet).

I forced myself to enjoy a somewhat leisurely morning today with a little pep talk that it was okay for me to relax a little bit… for a little while – the list would still be there.  A little coffee with almond milk, a little reading of magazines, some bacon, eggs with hot sauce, and potato pancakes.  I savored it all, at least until I glanced over at my list and all of the line items that weren’t yet checked off.

Yesterday the company owner called for Early Release mid-afternoon and after I got home I dug into my list, working on things until late into the evening.  Mr. Muse started a batch of cherry wine as well and my normal bedtime came and went.  Just one more thing.  Just one more check mark.  Just one last thing finished before I dragged myself to bed, exhausted, sore, eyes like each blink was done not with eyelids but with sandpaper.  Still, though, I pressed on, finishing the last 20 pages in a book and then allowed myself to sleep.

And there I was this morning, breakfast eaten and I began to gulp my coffee as my eyes scanned my list.  My foot started to bounce on the floor and soon I was up.  I slammed the last of what was in my mug and headed off to change into work clothes.  I have such a difficult time sitting still!  I had single-minded determination to finish my list!

But, back in the car passing fields with center pivot irrigation, sentinel rows of plantation pine trees and Mr. Muse and I both took matching deep breaths followed by heavy sighs.  The Cars were playing on the radio.  The wind was blowing through the open window and I turned to Mr. Muse and said, “It feels like Sunday.”  I yawned.  He said he felt the same way and we fell silent once again, minds focused on frozen custard and avoiding our exhaustion.

I hope I feel like I got two bonus days at the actual end of the weekend.

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Fancy Coffee Friday: Uplifting and Ridiculously Tall

Yesterday I was tweeted at (okay… who else thinks that we’re all going to laugh 50 years from now about “tweeting” and how weird it sounded?  Anyone?…. Anyone?  Will it even take 50 years?) by Jim, one half of @Gromit801, that he needed to read something uplifting.

Moi?  Uplifting?  I have always considered myself much more introspective as opposed to uplifting, but who am I to argue with my public.  The people have spoken!  So, here we go on this Fancy Coffee Friday… a short post about something uplifting and my being “ridiculously tall”.

My previous job was in an office where if I were to show up in pajamas, nobody would have cared.  My current job, however, has a dress code and the attire is “business” to “business casual”.  Suddenly I found myself going from jeans, tank tops and flip-flops to wearing all kinds of dresses and the accompanying proper footwear.  The shoes that I wear most often are black patent, 5″ platform stiletto heels with a double “Mary Jane” strap, similar to these.

I’m 5’8″ tall when I’m barefooted.  When I wear those shoes I receive a lot of comments that I’m “tall enough already”, my shoes are “very tall”, or my favorite – and one that I’ve received from separate people at different times:  “Sarah, you are ridiculously tall in those shoes!”  I just smile and laugh as I tower over them with my new Amazonian statue of 6 feet plus (it depends on how much volume my hair has that day).

I’ve always enjoyed being one of the taller people around.  In grade school when we had to line up by height, I was always at the end where my friends, all the tallest boys in the class, were as well.  On a few occasions where people shorter than myself were attempting to pick a fight with me when I was sitting down – I would stand up, straighter than I usually would, and look down upon them, shaking my head that they really didn’t want to pick a fight with me.

Dating was where I ran into some issues.  Men who were shorter than me always seemed to stare at my chest, prompting many an instance of me crossing my arms over “Thelma and Louise” (I can thank my dance instructor for the monikers – I had to learn to lead with them for Salsa).  Sorry vertically challenged men – those who came before you and couldn’t keep their eyes off the girls caused me to make a rule that I’d only date men taller than me – thankfully, that wasn’t difficult to accomplish.  But I digress.

Height, bolstered by my strappy stilettos, goes right to my head.  I stand straighter, I carry myself more confidently (in case I fall I want to make sure I look like I meant to), overall – I have more confidence.  I also have a lot more surprise on my face when I’m not paying attention and my heel sinks into a hot strip of tar repairing a crack in an asphalt parking lot.  So, ridiculously tall or not – there is something to be said for high heels and have an attitude.

Attitude – it looks good on ya!


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Sunday…Afternoon: Best Laid Plans

Simpler times probably meant that the average person wasn’t surrounded by calendars and planners at every turn of a corner.  I’d like to think so at any rate.  There were no refrigerators and smart phones to display every moment of every day or jingle at us with a warning that we’re supposed to be somewhere for something in 30 minutes time.

Days used to seem longer and getting through an entire year too forever!  At least that was the case until I got into my 20’s, which are not all the far away.  Suddenly, it was as if adulthood plunged me into a wormhole and time sped past in a blur and before I knew it, and despite all the memories I made along the way, I now find myself looking in the mirror on many a morning, giggling at the grey hairs that seemingly appeared overnight.  As often as my hair stylist suggest it’s time for another round of balayage, I continue to put off coloring my hair out of curiosity for what is going to happen next.  I am hoping I’ll get a shock of white right at my widow’s peak and it will stay that way for decades to come.  The Fates are probably laughing at this thought and purposefully going to intersperse my crowning glory with greys here-and-there until I give up on the wished for shock of white and dye my hair purely out of frustration.  And perhaps a little vanity, too.

But, like my hair and my hopes for it’ll change as I age, Life’s best laid plans don’t always go as we envision.  Even today’s post, though I’d hoped to have something written and posted in the morning, were waylaid by an outage of the internet service.  Once the service had gotten back up and running, writing plans were usurped once more by running errands which led to pulling laundry off the clothesline once we got home due to storm clouds.  And that left me here, at the dining table with my college-ruled notebook and InkJoy pen, chicken scratching a post in the late afternoon.

Yet, when I look up from the page, my future plans literally lie strewn about me.  Cookbooks are lying open to recipes for the week ahead; thin, little post-its marking the pages just in case.  A small notepad has a checklist for an upcoming camping trip and my phone, the electronic keeper of my life, lays atop it so I can add “To Do” reminders and grocery items to ever-growing lists.  Magazines like Madison and The Sun are stacked, waiting for me to pick them up and resume reading where I left off; and my hard copy planner, in case my phone breaks, peeks at me from my satchel slung over the back of a dining chair.  I am surrounded by my life’s plans in nearly all their immediate forms.

Yet, these plans are never concrete or unchangeable until they have actually been completed.  Tonight’s dinner menu may still change.  Thursday’s dance lessons may fall through.  Today’s blog post may not get published (though if you’re reading it… it did).

There are phrases galore to make us feel better when what we planned becomes what we didn’t do. Sometimes, however, I think The Fates have a different path in mind for us and it usually ends up being better and more exciting than where we were headed in the first place.

Have you recently had a change in your best laid plans?  What were they and what happened?

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