baa baa black sheep



7:57 a.m.

Yesterday I made myself do things I've been wanting to do, or needing to do, but have felt too crabby/weird to do. Because I am crazy.

a) I went to the library here, finally. It was surprisingly good--the selection was better than I expected, and they even had a little DVD and CD section, and a nice new children's wing. I made myself stay away from fiction, got a library card, and checked out some books on birds and rose care, since I am trying to lure Iowa's entire bird population into the backyard. And I have a rose bush and am completely bewildered by what I should be doing with it. The man working the counter was nice and gave me some bird tips and told me to plant my bulbs NOW, because he said it was going to frost this week! Don't delay, he said!

b) So last night I planted all the bulbs, and our 93-year-old neighbor came over and watched me for a while and chatted. She hasn't been out much since the cooler weather started, and she's been moving slowly when I've seen her. However, she was pretty pumped up about some tulips, and warned me not to stay out until dark before she went back to her house. I ripped a ton of grass out of the neglected front flower bed, and pruned some shrubs that have scale (ugh, the scale--I was horrified to look it up and realize all those tiny THINGS on the shrubs were IMMOBILE BUGS). I planted 40 iris bulbs, and around 12 tulip bulbs, and some crocus, and a handful of daffodils. I'd like to get about sixty million more crocus and tulip bulbs, but I was working with limited space. Perhaps I got a little "carried away" with the iris bulbs, but, irises are pretty, you guys.

c) I have been loathing my hair the last few months. I've been growing it out for a few years, trying to get proper trims and avoid coloring, etc. It's really getting long, and it's heavy and tangly and hot and always getting in my face and mouth. I've done short hair, I've done medium length hair, I've dyed it tons of colors, but lately have been resolved to get it really long, at my natural color. I always want it long, when I've got it short, but it's been so annoying the last few weeks. Since we moved here, it's been all weird, probably due to the change in water and humidity. Looking back at this makes me remember how comfortable it was. Do you see the back of that hair? Effortless! I've been threatening to chop it off about six times a day, and have had pleasant dreams where I did just that with a pair of scissors grabbed from the junk drawer in the kitchen.

Yesterday I realized I haven't been ACTING like I have long hair--I was treating it like short hair still. I remembered that when I had long hair before, I had a whole arsenal of barrettes and clips and detangling combs and pretty shiny pins. I've been trying to deal with all this hair with puny elastics that get stretched out after one use, and ponytails that hurt my scalp due to the hair's weight, and a dinky brush. Therefore, I picked up a few barrettes, a comb, and some clips that make showering-without-washing SO much easier, and a different conditioner. I then picked a salon at random in the phonebook, and got the trim I've been needing to get since June. After, I used a couple of barrettes so that my hair could be down but not in my face. And, you guys! I'm an idiot, because apparently if you have long hair, and use things designed for long hair, you feel a lot better!

The stylist, after glancing at my hair for two seconds (seriously) lifted the gray streak from the back of my head and said, "WHOA! Did you know this is going on back here?" "Um. Yeah, there are a few of those." "Oh, wow! That's so cool! It's so neat, it's like you have gray chunked highlights!" She also expressed admiration of my desire to have my hair so "natural."


Yesterday, I also purchased the proper belts for the washer, AND installed them by myself. And the washer spun! I felt so ridiculously exultant. I triumphantly called my sister, left J a note in ALL CAPS saying I FIXED THE WASHER!!!!!!! I felt so. happy. It relieved tension in my brain, and while I was gardening away, I felt all hummy and cheerful. 'I fixed the washer, all by myself!' my heart sang. After showering, I went downstairs, put in the load of gross wet soapy clothes left from when the washer broke, and started the machine. Good! Everything was good! All I had scheduled for tomorrow was painting, then, and that thought was beautiful.

(Kara, no! Pride! Before fall! EVERY TIME! Such a fool!)

Later I went back to get the clothes out, and realized the machine had still not drained all the water and everything was still soapy and even wetter and something smelled like it was burning. Oh, the gnashing of teeth! The rage! The dripping, cold mess! (The worst part is, I checked out this town's only laundromat yesterday and it is HORRID.) So, it has to be either the pump or something electrical or the transmission, all of which I think are over my head. Something could be clogged, somewhere, and I don't want to take apart everything to find out. J is insanely busy with his new job, and when he is home is immersed in lesson plans until bedtime. Therefore, today I will try to find an appliance repair person, and let's all hope and pray I do not have to use the laundromat. We are using the last two towels, and my pants are all dirty, and the thought of hand washing bath towels and jeans is just as dismaying to me as the thought of going to the sketchy laundromat.


black sheeped

Edit, 11:53 a.m.

This morning I found a reasonably priced repair person to come work on the washer at 3:00 tomorrow. I felt pretty happy, even with cramps of doom. I went to the store, bought some brownie mix and Midol, and then happily took the dog to the park. He played, I felt relaxed, and on the drive home decided that pulling out those soggy clothes and rinsing them and wringing them out didn't sound SO bad! It was fine! Today was a good day! Nothing could ruin this beautiful day!

I took the dog to the backyard so he could do his business. And then realized, in shock and horror, that the dog has tapeworms. This quickly sent me into mental hysterics. (Especially since we spent a couple hundred bucks at the vet Saturday for flea/tick medicine, heartworm prevention + "just in case" wormer for worms that are not tapeworms, of course, and some shots for diseases that run rampant in this state. We didn't have fleas in the mountains!) I called the vet and they said to come by and I could get him pills, after I asked eight million times if WE could get it OMG OH NO WORMS ARE GROSS OH SHIT. When I picked them up, the lady at the counter gently told me the medicine would, uh, make his body reject them. And they would likely show up in some poop. Or, more likely, vomit.


So the dog is in the garage for a few days while he possibly pukes out worms, and I'm not sure how to get rid of the feeling that we are going to die, even though we are not and the vet lady kept saying, "They aren't a big deal. You're not going to get one unless you eat a flea. And your dog doesn't even HAVE fleas."



Also? Why are there still soapy wet clothes in the washer?

I'm a fool!

She said, as I was leaving, "Bet you didn't think you'd be back so soon! Welcome to Iowa!"

black sheeped


Anonymous Pickles & Dimes said...

I love your hair in all its variations!

I'm in the long hair phase myself, growing it out as long as I can for the wedding because I'm wearing it down and curly...but the bangs.

THE BANGS. They are in my eyes - all the time.

Then I finally realized I could do that cute bobby pin trick that's so fashionable lately and I felt a million times better.

Even though Jason asked me, "Are you pretending to be 21 today?"

And BOO to the washer. Stupid thing.

9:41 AM, September 12, 2007  
Anonymous Swistle said...

Pickles & Dimes--SHARE BOBBY PIN TRICK. With photos!

Now, about post.

a) I am always shy about going to new places for the first time, which is another reason I hate moving. But then once I go, I'm happy. Good luck with birds! I recommend rotting fruit trees! Bonus: this will also attract wasps!

b) Irises ARE pretty. Scale is not. Love the quotes on "carried away."

c) Oh, the fun FUN hair pictures!! Oh fun!! Short hair is so cute on you! You look like a cuter Maggie Gyllenhaal! It also looks so pretty medium-length. And long is pretty too! You have Good Hair. Also, yes, long hair requires its own aresenal of pretty things. Clippies and sticks and potions with which to annoint it.

d) Oh, the washer! The repair, and the happy humming! I can't bear to think of it!

10:16 AM, September 12, 2007  
Anonymous Swistle said...

I mean the fruit is rotting, because of negligence! Trees themselves = not rotting.

10:17 AM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Jess said...

Your garden will be so pretty! I expect many photos when it blooms. Also, you can never have too many irises.

I did the same thing last time I grew my hair out. I did it in Senegal, first of all, which was stupid because it was so hot in Senegal and I ended up just wearing my hair back all the time and not making the most of its pretty length. And it took me months to figure out that there are things made for long hair that make it look and feel so much better. But your hair looks great at every length anyway.

10:22 AM, September 12, 2007  
Anonymous Pickles & Dimes said...

Ooh, I forgot to mention - I mailed your magnets yesterday! Expect a package soon. (That sounded like a fortune cookie, didn't it?)

And Swistle - I will post pics with the bobby pin trick some day. (We don't own a digital camera - yet.)

Anyway, here's a hopefully helpful explanation. There's two bobby pin "tricks" popular around here. One is to pull your bangs and a center section of hair straight back, and secure with two bobby pins criss-crossing each other towards the back of your head. (It's just like the style that was popular a few years ago, only you don't "pouf" up the hair you're pulling back, and you use the pins instead of a barrette.)

The trick I use is to pull my longish, sideswept bangs to one side and use a single, pretty bobby pin to pin them right above my ear (my right ear, since I part my hair on the left). Then I pull my bangs out just a little from the pin, enough so they're still secure but not plastered to my head. Then I pull some hair from behind to cover the bobby pin, since I lost all my pretty ones and usually use the plain ones. It gives a nice flow to my bangs and since mine aren't yet long enough to tuck behind my ears, it keeps them out of my eyes. Very important to me.

11:27 AM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Tessie said...

Wait, did you say HANDWASH towels and jeans? SHUDDER. I don't even know how to DO that. Would you use, like, a washboard or something?

God, let's hope it doesn't come to that.

11:43 AM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Artemisia said...

I love, love, love the short hair (the do in the photo with the mule. Or was it a donkey? I don't know how to tell the difference.)

Just this morning as I was driving to work I was thinking about calling my stylist and asking her to tack on an extra 15 minutes to my next appointment so we can come up with a cute and new haircut for me. What fun! Basically, I need a stylist that looks at the shape of my face, considers my four -- yes, FOUR -- cowlicks, and decides what the hell will look good on me.

Miss you.

12:14 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger rudecactus said...

Sometimes you just have to book time to do all the stuff you need and want to do but never get around to. Speaking of, I think I need to do that!

12:18 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Marie Green said...

Oh, my. Worms! Washing machine drama!

Ok, but the hair? Very cute in all forms, but I really think your long hair is beautiful. I too am growing out my hair, haven't dyed it ever (yet), have plenty of gray hair, and am remembering why long hair always Sounds Better than Reality. PS. Is that donkey in Custer State Park???

The library and the birds and the gardening sound happy. So happy. I wish I could figure out how to fit in PLANTING OF BULBS. Grr...

12:48 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Erin said...

The washer has BELTS?? Who knew?! I would never survive a washer repair. Nice job.

Also, is it time to plant bulbs? I always wish I had done that, every damn spring. I think, "I should have planted bulbs last fall." Maybe this time I will! But I'll have to do it at night after the boys go to bed. Doesn't REM have a "Gardening at night" song? I will play that.

2:39 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger jen said...

Once our washer in a rental stopped working and when the repair dude came, he looked kind of sad and said "this thing must have been making a LOT of noise for a long time before it broke" as if we had neglected the poor beast. Turns out it DID, but it was making noise when we moved in so we just assumed it was loud. Dumb newlyweds.

Your hair looks great no matter what! Let's see a pic of the "long" version. And I'm going to have to get some bobby pins, thanks P&D. I used to have cute ones with turtles and stuff on them. I wish I still had them.

Oh and worms.. ick ick ick... Nothing like moving somewhere and having to get used to all the Gross Bugs that populate that region.. *twitch*

4:14 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger Shelly Overlook said...

I love your hair short. I wish I could wear mine like that. Actually, Swistle is right, you just have Good Hair. What a gift.

LOVE the picture of you and the dog. Is that the tapeworm (shudder) dog? He's going to be sad to be in the garage, isn't he?

& you'll be so happy you planted all those bulbs in the spring. It's going to be gorgeous!

6:41 PM, September 12, 2007  
Blogger desperate housewife said...

Worms! Oh dear Lord, I feel creepy just thinking about it. I am now going to eye our dog suspiciously all evening.

4:01 PM, September 13, 2007  

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