Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Wednesday Wishes

This is Wednesday leaning out of her cat tree. She may look like just your average gray tabby cat, but she has many skills. Most of these skills, she uses for The Good. Okay, 'most' might be a slight exaggeration. Wednesday is a good little kitty, though, at heart. She loves her family, loves her sisters, loves annoying those sisters and she also loves to grant wishes. Every Wednesday morning, I will rub the side of the cat house and summon our magic cat!

I want to say that Wednesday went three for three on my wishes last week.  She was VERY generous!  Let's hope she is in a wish granting mood this week as well...

My Wednesday Wishes for the week:

1)  Trip to Portland - Ever plan a trip?  I tend to lose my patience about halfway through.  That can lead to some bad results (think staying at a hotel in a part of town you can get killed in because you didn't do any research on the area and just booked the hotel).  I need to keep my patience as I'm planning this trip.  We're trying to figure out where we're going to settle into the next phase our life.  Portland is on the list so I'm planning our week long trip there.  Hiking, exploring the city, visiting friends - all on the list.  But I haven't put the pieces of the puzzle together just yet.  Got my kick-ass deal on airfare, now I'm looking for the hotel deal.  I need to not run out of steam halfway through this.  I want this trip to be full and fun so we can get a good idea of whether or not the city is for us.  My wish is for the ability to focus and 'get 'er done' (shout out to my sis-in-law with that phrase, which I heard many times come out of my brother's mouth on our backpacking trip).

2)  Magic Extra Room - I love our office/den.  It's perfect for my husband to work in, for me to hang on the couch and write on, and for exercise sessions.  But my sister-in-law and her partner are coming to stay with us the middle of October.  It is not perfect for guests.  I have yet to find the perfect blend of extra bedroom/office.  It would be so cool if I could just push a button to change the layout.  Need to workout?  Push a button and it's a fully functional gym complete with ALL exercise equipment!  Need to grade papers on the computer?  Push a button and the gym turns back into the office.  Have guests coming into town?  Push that button and it's a gorgeous, relaxing guest room with no pet hair on the linens.  It would save time and space and really make the most of that extra space!

3)  Paws and Learn blog - If you have a moment, we're hosting a contest.  Prize is a $25 giftcard to PetCo or PetSmart.  I posted a picture of a friend's dog and all anyone has to do is guess the dog breed(s).  They're getting ready to have her DNA tested.  We thought it would be fun to have people guess the breed.  What makes a contest fun?  A lot of entries!!!  But we've only got ten so far.  The page has been viewed over 200 times.  I'm not sure why more people aren't entering?  Anyway, if you have a second, we'd love to know your thoughts!  Just click here to see Magpie!

What about you?  What are your wishes for our magical Wednesday cat?

Monday, August 6, 2012

I Could Have Died

Maxwell Lake
Okay, the title is a bit dramatic and not exactly true.  But I'm channeling my inner headline grabbing newspaper. 

The truth:  I spent the week trekking around the mountains in Northeastern Oregon with my brothers, my neice and nephew.  We get together up there every summer, but this year we decided we would test our skills against the high lakes (rather than just hang out in the campground the whole time).

Easy to smile when you don't carry a pack
Mine was a big fail. I practically starved with my meager supplies of vegan/vegetarian food.  I would totally fail in a post apocalyptic society - in the world that I built for my last book, SILO.  Unless they valued my gardening skills and my mad abilities to throw together delicious meals.  Keep that in mind if the shizz goes down, please.  And make a place for me in your compound. 

See the picture of the smiling kids?  And those logs behind them on the waterfall?  We had to walk over those.  The first hike was the brutal one.  The 8 switchbacks were nothing compared to the last mile straight up.  We were crawling in some areas because there was no way to make it standind up with a 25 pound pack on your back.
The kids soaking their feet
 While the kids soaked their feet, we set up camp. 

Don't tell my younger brother, but I think my nephew may be taking after me.  He pulled out the worms and said into the box, "Sorry, guys, but we have to use you now." 

Then his little apology turned into anger when he watched his dad cut one in half.  He kept watching the wriggling side of the worm that was left and yelling, "DAD! You shouldn't have done that to him!  That was mean!"
My neice caught the first fish.  And the second.  She's quite the fisherwoman.  I had to take a stroll around the lake until they were done.  I hate everything about fishing because I look at it from the fish POV.  You're just enjoying life eating mosquitoes in a lake and suddenly spot a juicy worm.  Next, you're swallowing a hook and being pulled across the lake with the hook in your stomach.  Then, you can't breathe as you're pulled out of the water...well, you get the picture.  
I could hear them whacking the poor things on the head on the rocks across the lake. *shudder*
So they enjoyed their fish that night and I enjoyed my quinoa salad that I had prepacked.  They spent the week catching fish and small game while I did my best to avoid the killing, cleaning and cooking of the sentient creatures.  I would fail big time in a post apocalyptic society if I were required to catch and kill food.  I couldn't survive in the world that I built for my book SILO.  I guess that's why I write about it!

Despite the food issue, it was a gorgeous trip.  We had a blast, for the most part.  It feels good to push your body.  And I always love to hang out with my brothers in any setting!

What about you - could you survive in the worlds you have built in books?  Have you ever been backpacking?