Archive - January 2018

Safe, loved, and warm in 2018

I promised myself on my birthday that I would do more to make sure my neighbors (here in NJ and in the USA) can be safe, loved and warm. Here’s how I’m trying to do that in 2018.

1. I have switched my political affiliation, again. Again-again? I really didn’t want to, because I belonged to a third party and I believe we really need some more third parties involved. However, in New Jersey you cannot vote in primaries unless you are one of the Big Two, so I filled out a form and picked a side. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

Axe-murderer handwriting


We can’t do this online in NJ because the state requires an actual signature.

2. I am continuing to use Resistbot to contact my representatives. Here in NJ, I am represented by two Democratic senators — the vocal Cory Booker and the … problematic … Bob Menendez. We’re usually on the same side of things. My representative is Don Norcross, whom I didn’t vote for (he was a complete lock so I tossed my vote toward a third-party candidate), but who is doing a bang-up job. I make sure my notes to them are thankful but not fawning.

I love Resistbot because I can craft faxes to my reps while on the shuttle to/from work every day. It’s a good use of time that I’d spend gazing out the window. AND, I bought a stack of postcards (with a patriotic theme, because I still do love this country) and some postcard stamps so I can go old-school.

My canine helper.


3. I subscribed to the Action Checklist for Americans of Conscience. It’s a weekly email by Jennifer Hoffman, and it gives a concise summary of actions that can be taken against legislative efforts that (usually) are against my safe, loved, and warm platform. What’s best is what’s NOT in the checklist:

  • No partisan b.s., name-calling, or insults.
  • No exclamation marks or yelling.
  • No vilifying.
  • No conspiracy theories.
  • No scary hype.

Because after a year of watching sane people scream for 400+ days straight without catching a breath, I welcome the levelheadedness of this list.

4. I want to attend some city council meetings this year. I haven’t yet, but I think if I’m going to be louder about my opinions, I should at least know how my local government works. Knowing who my councilpeople are and how they behave will make me a more informed voter. I’ll let you know how this goes.

In light of the above, I didn’t go to the Philadelphia Women’s March on Saturday. I had a great time last year, but honestly? I didn’t feel like going alone, and I didn’t have the energy to either organize my own group of people or try to invite myself into other groups. I’m proud of and thankful for everyone who did go out there.

Last year’s march taught me that I needed to become involved. This year I AM more involved.

Safe, loved, and warm!

Winter continues to blow

Another tiny burst of snow, which will melt this afternoon and refreeze tonight and try to kill us all.

My feelings upon seeing my snowy car.


I’m just feeling better from the fall I took down my own front steps last week.

(outtake)



131 days until Memorial Day.

Stupid sewing tricks

For Christmas, my mom hooked me up with a Singer sewing machine. I asked for one because I am not paying gobs of money for throw pillows and window treatments and cushions. Problem is, I haven’t sewn in a LONG time, and they were Halloween costumes. Here’s a description of those costumes, along with a bonus #metoo moment that nobody even blinked about in 2003 but is awful to re-read now. The good/bad thing about sewing Halloween costumes is that they only need to stay together for 6 hours tops.

Based on recommendations from MetaFilter, I ordered this out of print book from Amazon (KIM PRIME!) to help me brush up on the basics that I forgot over the last fourteen years.

I bought some remnants from Jo-Ann Fabric, a good pair of fabric scissors, and some extra bobbins (that don’t work with my machine model). On Sunday, I went to the craft room and got down to brass tacks.

It took me 10 minutes to wind the bobbin. After that, I got down to brass tacks.

The first exercise was going through all of the stitches on the machine and changing stitch length and width (how zig-zaggy the needle goes) for each one. The result is kind of pretty!

The second exercise was to draw flowers on a piece of fabric and sew over top of the drawing. Flowers? Psht. I decided to create a work of art and embroider the term of endearment that WM and I use for each other.

(sic and with love)

If I get good at this I think my side hustle will be creating throw pillows with swear words appliqued to them.

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