The Musings of One Miss Julie

Monday, November 21, 2005

Breaking News: A Bowling Update

When I said my career-high bowling score was 170, I actually meant 181. Not bad, eh?

For the sake of fairness, I should mention here that Mr. Scott redeemed himself this evening. After two weeks of watching his wife whoop him, he started his third game tonight with 5 strikes in a row and ended the game with a score of 197. I think he's finally found his bowling legs.

Happiness reigns at Chez Julie.

This will probably be my last post before Thanksgiving, so here are my fondest wishes for happy Thanksgivings all around. And may you always have much for which to be thankful.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Look Who's Blocking

I've been a busy miss in the almost two weeks since I last posted -- and I don't have as much to show for it. Mostly because the Build-a-Better-Julie Program has begun in earnest. And successfully, too. I've lost about 5 pounds. I've been celebrating the ever-decreasing size of my posterior, and for once that celebration doesn't entail food consumption. Any second now my pants are going to be so big that they fall off.

Just tonight I finished the bulk of the knitting on my sweater vest. I've got it laid out on the kitchen table, all nice and dampish and blocking away. Here's the really compelling photo that's got "professional" written all over it.

sweater vest blocking
I'm now to the part of the project I loathe: Finishing. I'll probably delay and procrastinate on this for a good couple of weeks so that by the time I do finish it spring will have come and I'll have to wait to wear my sweater anyway. Betcha can't wait to see what I'll blog about during that spell.

I've got bowling again tomorrow night. You can check out the Sister Strikers bowling shirts my sis and I wear at the lanes. Last week, Becky and I really carried Team Spare Change. Poor Mr. Julie barely crossed the 100-pin threshold and had to sit and watch as I bowled my career high of 170. I ask you this: Can it be a career-high if our league calls 9 pins a strike? (Note to self: C'mon now, who are you kidding? Does it really matter?)

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A Day in the Life

I usually steer clear of mentioning my work here in any specifics because it's important for me to appear neutral and uncommercial, not get myself in hot water around the office, and because, in general, I think it's better form.

I break my rule this time. And mostly because I'm really, really proud of the end result and think it's fun and worthwhile.

Here's what's been occupying so much of my time of late.

I now present to you The Borders Holiday Storybook -- a super coolio gift recommendation plaything.

I'd love to hear your thoughts and suggestions, if you're so inclined.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Keeping It Out of the Gutter

So Scott and I joined a bowling league, along with our friend Bryan and my sis. Tonight we hit the lanes. We call ourselves Spare Change.

I have a long and sometimes embarrassing history with this sport. And yes, it meets my criteria for sporthood. It's simple: Anything that leaves me diagnosing my aching self with the activity as prefix is a sport. For example, tonight I've got Bowling Thumb, Bowling Knee, and Bowling Backside. I can't apply that criteria to everyday activities like Saturday's leaf-raking, for example. There is no such thing as Leaf-Raking Shoulder because at my age there's only one diagnosis for such ailments: The Build-a-Better-Julie Program needs to find time for physical fitness.

Bowling appeals to me on several levels. First, it's a great social activity. Not only do we chat amongst our little team but we get chummy with our competitors, too. And in my case, I'm high-fiving folks who aren't in my usual social circles. The guys from Lou LaRiche Chevrolet who bowled against us tonight were swell fellas, to be sure. Perhaps the best part about bowling, however, is the fashion. You can't say enough for ugly shirts, uglier shoes, and the occasional terry wristband. Here I present the bowling shoes that Mr. Julie gave to me and my sis for Christmas a few years back. I feel mighty swanky strolling onto the alley in my own multi-colored suede size 7s. Tune in next week when I put my very own bowling shirt on the catwalk.

I'm proud to report that sis and I proved indispensable contributors to our team tonight. I brought in 124, 140, and 132. Not bad for a girl who not so long ago, in 10 frames, only knocked down 7 pins.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

A Celebration of the Ordinary -- Long Form

Clean underwear is underrated. And I don't mean just any clean underwear. Today I refilled the top drawer in the dresser with my favorites, an abundance of freshly laundered underpants, which gives me a peaceful, easy feeling. Am I alone in enoying that moment, I wonder?

These last three-ish weeks when I was so busy at work that time for laundry was nonexistent, I got into the dregs of the underwear drawer. Maybe I'm the weirdo here, but my underwear drawer is layered. The top layer contains all my favorites, the no-fail always-comfortable variety. The middle holds the B-strings comprised of older former favorites. And the dregs contain either the embarassingly ratty or else pairs that over and over again leave me asking myself "What was I thinking when I bought those!?" Today I climbed out of the dregs I've been living in and I'm ready for next week. In any case, let the state of my underwear drawer today be a metaphor of my feeling of general well-being. And you thought this was a knitting blog.

I'm mostly out of the insanity at work -- I hope. This week will be busy again, but I think I will be able to get home before 8 p.m. each night and maybe even enjoy a few meals in the kitchen with Mr. Julie. And best yet, I may not have to continue working into the night even after I get home. Poor Groucho the Wonderpooch has been feeling so neglected that on Thursday night he pushed his way onto my lap around 10:30 and forced me to take a break. Here you see him on my lap, bathed in the glow of the monitor, and checking things over.

We had such a fine fall day today that Mr. Julie and I headed to the backyard to dig out the shin-deep leaves. We have 14 trees and 3 hedge rows that create quite a mess. We're thinking of having a passel of kids just so we have help for fall cleanup. I've heard that's a great reason to have kids.

I was on leaf-bagging duty while Mr. Julie pushed all the leaves into sizey piles for me to pick up (see "picking up nails" reference). In order to flatten the bottoms of the paper leaf refuse bags we used, I had to insert my head and entire upper body into the bag a la Charlie Brown. While I was inside of one leaf bag, Mr. Julie decided to make it difficult for me to extricate myself, causing no little amount of frustration and panic for yours truly.

For a moment out there today, I imagined myself in a romantic comedy (presuming anyone would want to watch me and Mr. Julie, two fine, but pasty Midwesterners fall in love) with some happy love ditty by Harry Connick, Jr., fading in to create a mushy-mushy music video scene. In it I would not bumble around in the paper leaf bag but would exit it laughing prettily and twinkly-eyed, I'd throw leaves at Mr. Julie, he'd throw some back, I'd throw some more, somehow we'd find ourselves lying in a large pile of leaves on the ground, the tension would grow, the tension would grow to be too much, I'd swoon in his arms while he kissed me with heavy-lidded passion. And that, my friends, is where the scene would end because, I ask: What girl wants to get itchy, scratchy leaves in her hair, her mouth, under her shirt, and worse, down her pants? The End.

Actually, we had a delightful day, we did throw some leaves at each other, and we took lots of deep breaths of that gorgeous fall-scented air. And we shook our fists at the heavens for sending breezes that blew more leaves from the trees onto the lawn we'd just cleared.

And because this is a knitting blog, after all, I've got this to report: I knit 4 rows last night.