Happy 2011

 OK, so exactly what the concept of beginnings or endings or time or anything means is beyond me tonite (or most nights for that matter) but if the world as we knew it ended in three hours and 48 minutes, how long would it take us to notice?  And when the end of the world comes is it going to be midnight on Greenwich Mean Time? Eastern Standard Time? Does Apocalyptic Prophecy recognize Daylight Savings Time or is it more devilish and Arizonian in nature….just some of my thoughts as I drift off to bed on this December 31, 2010. That and if it is going to end could it be before my alarm clock goes off so I could sleep in tomorrow?

Happy New Year!!!!

Mini Post

 Finally watching George Bailey dream big but live well instead. This and Wizard of Oz are my favorite all time movies.  I always watch it Christmas Eve but due to work schedules it has been delayed. 

One day off and then three more days of work before getting two days off together. 

I am grateful to be gainfully employed and also happy to finally watch my annual  viewing of one of my three favorite angels, George Bailey and the truly horrible Mr. Potter!

Writer’s Block: Expand on this

The line between absorbing fun and addiction is integrity. There are three ways to tell if something is a recreational choice/ habit or if it has become an addiction.

The first is: Are you telling any lies especially to those you love about where, when, how much, how often you participate in this recreation? If not, no matter what the answers, probably not an addiction. Likewise, no matter how minimal the time spent, if you are lying about this activity then the behavior pattern is addictive.

The second is: Have you missed work, school or important family activities to do this activity? Are you frequently late or unprepared at work, school or home do to prolonging your participation in this activity?" If  the answer is yes then the behavior is addictive and warping your priorities.

The third is: Are you taking long term risks with your health to continue this activity even after becoming aware that your health and performance is suffering? In gaming this could mean frequent all-nighters, pounding "monster" drinks to stay awake all night then driving a motor vehicle for instance…

If one of these is yes. Try just taking a break from the activity and see if you can. If you can’t then yes, it is an addiction and time to cold turkey it till you can just approach it as a game.

If two of these are yes, put the game controller down now or step away from the computer. Get in touch with what you are running away from and get a life again, then maybe you can play again.

If three of these are yes. Get help.

I love this time of year when all my favorite celebrities share their favorite holiday gifts. Unfortunately for me whenever I peruse one of these high profile lists I get sticker shock. Honestly often just one item will be more than my entire holiday budget. So every year I make a list of my own. Be forewarned I am a little bit on the frugal side but that doesn’t mean I don’t spend a lot of time picking the best of the best for friends and family, just not a lot of money. Things I value most are happiness, music and well written words, so if you have anyone on your gift list who likes to laugh or listen to great music or enjoy the well turned phrase, here are my picks for this Christmas. Five are for those who want to buy and have someone else do the work and five require you purchase the supplies and do the work yourself. All ten say the gift giver is one thoughtful and quirky person and can quite likely win this years "Best Gift Ever" contest.

1. For the Funny one in your crowd or just the one on your list who never quite recovered from their tenure at Catholic School I highly recommend http://heynunnienunnie.com/  This little website offers the most hilarious $15 Christmas CD  I have ever listened to, ever, and the two ladies who produced it actually have a large enough vocabulary they can make you laugh without bleep-able  verbage!  And a perfect stocking stuffer is the $5 Get Out of Hell Free card; this is the kind of soul insurance everyone on your "naughty" list needs.

2.For the guitar player on your list I suggest any CD by Mel Brown, but i especially recommend "Chicken Fat". I was reintroduced to him recently by the gurus of sound at Hoodlums music. Not only do I recommend you pick up the CD I totally recommend you buy it local. If you live in the Tempe/Phx area I recommend Hoodlums on the SW corner of Mclintock and Guadalupe. If you are one of my many friends who live elsewhere, then have your own local harmony hookup bring it on, and may I say, buy one for yourself. It is always in my Ipods "most Played" list.

3. For the musician or music lover who lives in the greater Phoenix area I cannot recommend highly enough the gift of tickets to the Musical Instrument Museum or MIM. I was taken for my birthday this year and cannot wait to go again. Regular adult admission is $15 and tickets can be purchased on line, although if you are already in Scottsdale pick up the tickets in person and check out their gift shop in which plenty of lovely and unique low cost items also abound. Here is the link for admission tickets  https://tickets.themim.org/show.asp

4. For  Something unique to put a giftcard or sweet sentiment in, or if you just want to turn over a new leaf; try this etsy site for imaginative paper boxes and "clean/dirty" leaves. http://www.etsy.com/shop/branwen71. The ceramic leaves can be used as dishwasher magnets or magneted to a lapel can set the tone of the humor at your next holiday party.

5. And my top book recommendation for gift giving is as always a children’s picture book, well like the "Giving Tree" is a children’s book. They even still have signed copies at Changing Hands, also in Tempe. Located conveniently close to Hoodlums music. Check out this review of this witty bit of lit.  http://www.motherreader.com/2010/08/its-book-jackass.html.

Also some other authors websites to check out for can’t lose autographed books that come in full adult novel sizes try:

And my top 5 DIY Christmas projects this year are where you buy the supplies but supply the love and construction time are

1. http://web.me.com/chrismcveigh/mintinbox/home/Entries/2010/11/29_Lego_Death_Star_Ornament.htm

2. http://www.knitting-and.com/knitting/patterns/drwho/drwhoscarves.htm
3.http://www.knittingonthenet.com/patterns/hatfelticesplash.html  Only don’t use the novelty yarn like they do, just make and shape the hatr from their pattern  and then attach a lovely dollar broach or silk flower on the Right side.

4. http://www.crochetme.com/media/p/90002.aspx

5. http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Homemade-Book and add your own poetry, pictures or comics

And that is my favorite things under 20$ this year.