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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

My great ideas!

I know you may find this nearly impossible to believe, but my hubby and I have differing opinions on what exactly consists of a great idea.  (I know, RIGHT?!  SO WEIRD!)  In the last 28 days, I have come up with at least 3 great ideas, but they were all shot down for one reason or another.  Allow me to divulge the details to you.  

My first great idea was the idea that for New Year's eve, we should have a 90's dance party in our basement.  I envisioned a whole pile of people with me as I danced my guts off to Pump Up the Jam and Gonna Make You Sweat (as opposed to my usual dancing in the basement solo).  We could move the table out of the room, blast some 90's dance hits, and sweat uncontrollably into the new year.

For some reason, my hubby did not think this was a good idea!  He brought up the idea that our house was miniscule-esque, and secondly that he hates dancing.  I think that the second rebuttal was a stronger factor than the first, but he pressed the former as it seemed more logical.  Fine.  

The next great idea came just within hours of that first idea.  I decided that we ought to move to Switzerland in 2015.  (Originally it was either going to be Switzerland or Svalbard, but after much consideration, I chose Switzerland.)  You know what they say, right?  If you want the American dream, move to Switzerland.  (No, actually, I am not kidding.  People say that.)  Can you just imagine all of that grass-fed Emmentaler?  And they hide cannons in their barns and every house has it's own arsenal, but they are neutral and won't pick fights.  (See if you can say that about America.)  They have bombs attached to their bridges in case an enemy tries to attack!  They're geniuses.  Hello, Swiss Army knife anyone?  Yeah.  Exactly.  

And I could learn a few more languages, which is a bonus.  I speak Spanish and I have limited knowledge of a few other languages, but this would exponently help learning a variety of other languages.  They actively oppose GMOs, are uber clean, and have one of the highest standards of living in the world.  Sign me up.  So I went on some Swiss job search page and loosely guessed at the French and Italian and told my husband I'd find him something great.  For some reason, he kaboshed yet ANOTHER great idea.  


This morning I came up with my third great idea.  It came to me as I was driving home from the gym.  I have been learning Mandarin Chinese on CD (Pimsleur) in the car (it was my Christmas present!), but haven't uploaded it to my ipod yet to listen to it while I run.  I do, however, have Hebrew on my ipod.  When I got into the car, I plugged the ipod in to listen to the Hebrew lessons for nostalgic sake (I haven't reviewed it in such a long time).  I heard the Pimsleur guy asking to say nearly the same things he asks you to say in Mandarin, and then it came to me.  

I could just pause and answer in both languages and do them both at the same time.  

What a time saver!  Two languages at once!  I would call it Duo Linguo.  Pimsleur (or I) should invent a program that you can drop in two languages at once and say them.  

It would go like this:  
Pimsleur guy: Try to say, "I am American."  
Me: At americait.  Wo shi mei gua ren.  THIS IS SO AMAZING!  (p.s. I have no idea how to spell in Hebrew or Mandarin.  Sorry.  It's all verbal.)

Then they would have the native speakers say it so you could check your work, as usual.  I came in the house, and nearly glowed with excitement.  

Me: Honey, honey, honey!  Guess what?  Ohmuhgawsh, I have a GREAT idea!  What if we made a thing that you could learn two languages at the same time!  Wouldn't that be great!  You'd save so much time and learn twice as much!  
Hubby:  Um...wouldn't that be confusing?  
Me:  No!  Hebrew and Mandarin sound nothing alike!  
Hubby:  That's not really what I meant...  

Ah, well.  I'll keep trying.  

Peace, love, and yodel in the Alps, 
Ms. Daisy

Monday, January 19, 2015

New! Try Dog Bag!

Are you tired of sweeping and vacuuming thirty times a day?  Do you wish you could shave your dog bald just to rid yourself of all the gobs and piles of dog hair that curl up like stray tumbleweeds in the corners of every single room?  Do you find dog hair in places that makes you scream your eyes off?  

Get ready for freedom and joy with the new Dog Bag!  Simply trim to size for the legs and tail, and tie it up around the neck, and you're all set!  

No more shedding on your clean floor!  It collects inside the bag so you can just dump it out in the wind outside.  Environmentally friendly - the birds can now have cozy nests with the amount of hair you're flinging to the wild!  

No more backbreaking work of sweeping, scrubbing, and vacuuming like you're Cinderella on crack.  With Dog Bag you can sit down and enjoy your evenings!  

Imagine: no more finding stray dog hairs on towels, couches, carpets, coats, clothing, or embedded into the hideous stair carpets!  Your life will instantly break out in the hit song from Annie, "Easy Street", as you waltz around your home, mocking at your now rarely used broom!  

Dog Bag comes in packs of 60 for only $14.99!  Go to your favorite retailer and demand that they carry the original, the best, the only: Dog Bag!

(Note to panicked people who love dogs more than their own eyesight: No animals were hurt in the making of this advertisement. Dog wore Dog Bag for about three minutes to take a picture and was positively reinforced for her "prettiness" throughout the experience - although I would have liked to try it out for a good 24 hours.  If you'd like to "rescue" my dog from me and what you perceive as inhumane treatment, please email me and I will send you off with all the supplies you need, minus the $150 a month for special food and drugs for her EPI disease.  Local pick up only, and a short interview required.  Thank you for your concern.  The world is a better place now.)

Friday, January 16, 2015

Letter to the rich guy

Dear rich guy,  

I was over on looking through some houses in desirable locations when I came across yours.  At $2.4M you were slightly out of my price range, but I had to have a look to see what that looked like on your 6 acres, so through the pictures I went.  I have to admit, my heart did a flip-flop when I saw your indoor pool and sauna.  It was a real pool, too, 25 yards and all, with several lanes.  I looked at your marble fireplace, and your seven bathrooms, with a separate tub and shower and heated floor tiles in the master bath.  

I started to imagine what it would be like to live in your house, all 11,000 square feet of it.  Your all mahogany library was quite a doozy.  I guess my Target bookshelves wouldn't have to make the move and I could really keep all of the books I read, instead of sending them out on or giving them away to Friends of the Library.  Your kitchen could house five of my kitchens and then some.  And then I looked at your bedroom.  It seemed the size of a gym, enhanced by those totally stupid cameras that make houses look all weird (realtors: for crying out loud, those are the DUMBEST things ever).  I thought, "How empty!"  

And that's what it is, I think.  


Yes, I admit.  I live in a mid-century house, not even 1/11th the size of yours.  I have the smallest house out of anyone I know.  I live in a city that I would trade in for pretty much any other on the planet (minus two I can think of off the top of my head).  l have to sit on the end of my bed and move my knees to open my dresser drawer to get to my pants.  It would be nice to not have to do that, obviously.  It would be a bonus if my backyard were as big as your living room so I could have chickens without my German Shepherd dog killing them.  It would be nice to have more than 22" of closet space.  It would be really nice if I could choose to use a different bathroom instead of the one the whole family uses since I think they secretly have a love of peeing all over everywhere except inside of the toilet.  

But you know what?  I wake up everyday to a family who loves me and I love them.  We have meals together and I cook all of those meals from scratch every single day, because that is what I love to do.  I garden in the spring and summer and we eat what I grow.  We do the dishes together, go for bike rides together, watch Jeopardy together, and do life together.  I get to raise my children.  My husband is a talented go-getter, with quirky things that make me love him more every day (plus, he's hot).  I don't want to trade my kids in for other ones (most of the time, unless they're peeing on the floor).  I don't have stupid amounts of bills.  I live simply and keep my house clean.  I don't even have cable TV or a smart phone.  I have a ten year old vehicle that I am happy with - because I don't find my identity in my car.  I have best friends who I could literally tell anything to (and have before) and they would still love me no matter what.  I have peace with my Maker (not because of what I've done, but because of what He's done).

Maybe you have all of that, too.  I really hope you do.  But I thought about what I would think if I lived in a house like yours.  I would start thinking that I would have to put on a really good show for people, I'd have to buy a Modigliani painting and put it in my living room, and those things are freakin expensive.  I'd have to have just the right kind of drawer pulls, because if I didn't, I'd have all this house that was supposed to be top-notch and here I was with horrible drawer pulls and that would be a tragedy.  I'd have to have 2,189 channels on my TV because if I didn't, people would wonder what the heck is up with me.  And if I didn't have heated tile floors in my bathroom, well, I'd just be a peasant.  

But, dude.  I now live without any of those things and I am happy and content and even joyful.  For me, I can have my entire day made by simply seeing sunshine through my kitchen window while I sip my organic black tea.  I can see that in every person there is something interesting, and as I walk past them or when I talk to them, I wonder what makes them tick.  They aren't a commodity, they aren't expendable, they aren't there to help me get from A to B, they're something amazing.  I'm not better than them and they're not better than me.  If I lived in your house, would I think to start comparing my awesomeness to their outward pathetic-ness?  I don't know.  I might be tempted.  

So, you know what?  Even though your house really is beautiful, I think I'm just fine where I am, even if I had an extra $2.4 million laying around.  Thanks for the tour, though.  I hope you sell it and find what you're looking for.  

Peace and love, 
Ms. Daisy

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Zit Removal Guide, the Daisy way

My face thinks it is 15.  

I predictably break out once a month (thank you, hormones).  This is payback for my teenage years when I think I got 3 zits total from the time I was 12 until I was 21.  Now, you can set the clock to my zits.  Awesome.  But even though I'm in my 30's, it still stinks to get blemishes.  I mean, it's not life crushing like when you're 16, but it is still stupidly annoying.  

I tried Crunchy Betty's face scrub with milk and nutmeg, and it does make you have a baby butt face (that is - your face is so soft it feels like a baby's butt, not that you are a small butt face), but honestly, I think for the zits, it really might only help a teense.  

I was wondering what was out there that would be helpful to crush the life out of the red little hormone dots in my life, and I may have stumbled upon something.  Now, obvs, different things work for different people because of our different chemistry, but this works for me.  What's the secret mix?  

Well, if you followed Crunchy Betty a couple years ago, you may remember the month or so when everyone was washing their face with honey.  Were you on that bus?  I tried it.  It was pretty cool.  Honey is anti-microbial, and filled with wonderful enzymes and lots of other goodies that make it a wonder.  

One day a few months ago, I had a few zits and the thought dawned upon me to combine the wonderful properties of honey with the scrubby exfoliating powers of nutmeg (yeah, seriously, but don't use nutmeg on your face more than twice a week - the overdose of nutmeg on the face looks like your face got into a fight with sandpaper and a cat). 
I poured a small blob of honey into my hand, sprinkled nutmeg into the mix, squished it around and slimed it on my face (in an upwardly circular motion, of course - I really should be less technical, but I just can't...).  I stared at my weird looking face in the mirror for a few minutes, thinking this was likely a necessary step in my experiment.  I pretended I was at a spa as I layed a hot washcloth over my face (even though I was standing in my vintage 1950's bathroom - but hey, when you have a washcloth over your face, you can pretty much pretend you are anywhere) and then followed with wiping the magical mess off.  

I don't have any hard empirical evidence, but from my point of view, I honestly think it was helpful in zit reduction.  It makes sense that it could be, anyway, right?  You have the anti-microbial properties of the honey gutting out your zit dirt (I think that's the scientific name for it), and the nutmeg is smoothing to the areas on your face that are having skin distortion/flaking/etc.  Anyway, it  worked for me, and if you want to try it, I hope it works for you.  

Happy zit reduction!  

Peace, love, and grow up, face, 
Ms. Daisy

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

This Makes Me Laugh

On the day that I guessed the Christmas present that my husband bought for me, I responded immediately with a giant freak out because it was too large and expensive.  I then felt an absurd amount of jerkfulness, especially as his thoughtfulness was directly inversely proportional to my unwarranted spazfulness.  

The only way to console myself was to Google "I am a jerk", which led me to a quiz, which I dutifully took and failed (or passed - whatever you call it when you are a jerk).  This plunged me into more sentiments of disturbing-ness.  

I had to climb out and distract myself from myself.  But how?  (I mean, besides the part where you go and say you are a jerk and will you forgive my horridness.)

Oh! Yeah! Reading funny t-shirts on Zazzle.  I submit, therefore, the evidences of my pathetic evening pre-Christmas.  

You're welcome?  

Peace, love, and don't be a jerk in the first place,
Ms. Daisy


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Toughen up, sucka!

Families have different things that they value.  One family is all huggy and loving and kisses each other all the time, other families value clear communication and value hanging out with each other spending quality time together up the wazoo.  

Not my family.  

We value being TOUGH.  

We were taught this from a young age.  Let me illustrate this with a true story that actually took place when I was about 5 years old.  It was winter, oh, bloody winter (sorry, you English, it's not a swear here, it's just a funny word) and we were going to grit our teeth and freakin enjoy it.  We were going to go sledding.  And my Dad was going to take us.  If you've not heard before, my Dad is actually Rambo, which is part of why we value toughness.  

So, my brother (he was 3 at the time) and I hiked off behind my Dad whose steps in the 4 foot deep snow were like eight feet apart and we could only crawl into the holes he made by his gigantic boots.  Was he going to turn us into some kind of pansy babies and walk slow just because our legs were eleven inches long??  NO!  

(This is only the beginning of the lessons in our house.  Walk fast or die.  That's one thing you've got to learn, especially if you are in the woods.  Walk fast or be left behind and a bear will eat your face off.  And if you walk too close behind the person in front of you, a giant whippy branch is going to snap directly into your eyeball, attach itself to the inside of it, snag out and dangle in the middle of the path as a sort of warning for others.)

But I digress.  We walked/crawled to a hill that led down to a bridge.  The bridge was the walkway over a channel between two lakes.  This path was about as wide as a car with trees lining the sides.  We stood at the top of it.  My Dad placed us into the sled, stood behind us and gave us a shove.  The wind whipped past our faces as we reached probably 30 mph (or so it felt), the ground beneath us a blur of blinding white and the whoooshing sound filled our ears.  Because we were unaware of any possible danger, we made no effort to abandon ship as we crashed full force into a tree.  We were fine.  We thought it was fun.  Upon going home and reporting the incident to my mother, she did not find it (for some weird reason) as fun or as awesome as we thought it was and began some weird tirade at my Dad.  Imagine that!

We learned gems of lessons as youngsters.  I recall a recurring theme in the form of a phrase from childhood when something unfortunate would happen to us and we thought it would be awesome to protest with whimpering tears.  It declared clearly and poignantly, "Is it broke?  Are you bleeding?  Then QUIT YER CRYING!"  Sometimes, if you persisted in crying, you would get the bonus, "Quit crying or I'll give you something to cry about!"  This was alternated for variety with, "Quit your crying or I'll knock you into next Tuesday!"  These were very helpful in pretty much any situation.  

We learned toughness from example.  One day in the summer, my Dad had gone out on his dirt bike and rode up some of the two (which dwindled into one) track trails through the woods (which dwindled into no tracks and just woods).  He would go tear up the hills at 80 miles per hour, swerving around each tree and obstacle.  That was until he popped over a certain spot, didn't see a stump and it went through his shin.  No, really.  Through it.  A hole.  With blood.  Do you know what a shin bone looks like?  I do.  I got to see my Dad's up close and personally.  I think he ripped part of his sleeve off in the woods, tied up a tourniquet for himself, and walked the bike all the way home.  He sauntered into the kitchen and nonchalantly said to my mother, "I think I probably should go to the hospital."  This was in the same tone as you might say, "I think we'll have tacos for dinner tonight." or "That new movie sounds interesting."  Except that blood was squirting out of his leg like some kind of fountain in the middle of Paris and you could see the white of his shin bone.  I think my brother passed out.  Wimp.  

There is a girl I play volleyball with who happens to be part of my distant family (like as in, her great-grandpa and my grandpa were cousins), but we have the same family of origin surname.  Whilst playing last week, we looked down at my knuckles and watched as blood dripped all over them (for what reason, I am not sure - blood?  It's just a flesh wound!).  She reacted initially as any person is trained to act - she inquired, "Did you just do that now?"  Yeah.  "Are you okay?"  I looked at her, straightfaced at first, then with a sort of confused and insulted expression washed over me, wherein we both declared simultaneously that of COURSE I was okay, I am a "Fill in the blank with my maiden name".  

This goes back to who knows how far, but the story is that the first person in our family in this country came here as a German soldier hired during the Revolutionary War to fight - he got a musket ball in the guts, pulled it out and fought in the rest of the war.  

What's up now, suckas.  

When I hear about people not wanting to go outside because it is too cold (-20 F windchill), or they don't want to go running/start exercising because it makes them tiiiiired and it's haaard, or they don't want to eat their vegetables and get healthy, I have some advice for you:

Is it broken?  Can you see bone sticking out of your leg?  Then QUIT YER CRYIN' and just do it.  


Peace, love, and just doooo it, 
Ms. Daisy