Hat on Top, Coat Below


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Entries in the ‘Holidailies 2008’ Subcategory

Three is a Magic Number

I set two goals for 2008: 1. Weigh less and move more. 2. Keep less and organize more. I haven’t done a check-in on my progress since early October, so before I get het up about what I want to do in 2009, I think it makes sense to take do a final report card […]

Clearance OK

My on again, off again relationship with Distributed Proofreaders (DP) has mostly been on again since last summer. This time around, I’ve pulled way back and am focusing on a few parts of the process I most enjoy. This means I’ve mostly been doing post processing, which is the step where it all comes together […]

Sentimental Sunday

  Back when I was in junior high school, we didn’t have any standardized tests to study for, so we had time to take subjects like home ec and art. This painting, recently unearthed from my basement, was done in one of those classes. Based on the notes on the back, I believe the assignment […]

Battle of the Suet Cake

Round 1: I put the suet cake in the holder and hang it in the bush. Entire suet cake disappears overnight; door to holder is found hanging open. Round 2: I put a new suet cake in the holder and secure the door with a ball chain, looped around twice so it’s pretty tight. Entire […]

Evidently I’m a Graver

Today I finally finished going through the cemetery pictures from my trip to Illinois in November and decided which ones to put up on Flickr, including this lovely woodsy cross monument. The weather lately has curtailed my cemetery wanderings, but I’m sure when it gets a little more pleasant again I’ll be back out there, […]

Happy 2009

  I celebrated New Year’s Day by watching the Rose Parade (in HD, first time I’ve been able to do that) in my bathrobe, then going back to bed for a while. When I got up and dressed (in my Mickey Mouse Happy Everything sweatshirt), I ate pizza and cheese bread and pie and watched […]

The Year in Pictures

Today I took my last picture for Project 365+1, which I chose to join at the beginning of 2008 after looking at a lot of photo-a-day groups at Flickr. It felt friendly, like my snapshots taken with a point and shoot would be welcome, and it seemed like it would have just enough moderation to […]

Twilight, The Movie

I finally went to see the Twilight movie yesterday, hoping enough time had passed since its release that the squee-ing fangirls would have calmed down some. (Hi, I’m cranky.) What I hadn’t planned for was theater management moving the film into one of the tiny shoebox spaces in the multiplex and the fact that so […]

Morning Mystery

I had just merged onto the freeway this morning when a car went by in the lane to my left. Nothing special in that, of course, except this car was white with smallish black spots that looked like someone had let a detail-oriented child loose with a can of spray paint. I was still pondering […]

New Toy

  Mr. Karen gets a lot more days off during the holidays than I do, but it’s pretty much impossible for me to feel sorry for myself when he uses some of his extra time at home to do things like this: he built me a swift. Actually, he built two, because by the time […]

Still Sweet

  The theme for my holiday celebrations this year has turned out to be “better late than never”. I got started late on our cards, of course. There are still a few I haven’t written out and sent yet, but rather than take care of that last night, Mr. Karen and I decorated the cookies […]


Today has been quiet. Very, very quiet. The usually sparse 6 a.m. traffic on my drive to the gym was even sparser. I got a parking space at the Y in a row that’s generally full when I get there. The locker room was eerily silent as I changed. There were other people working out […]

Christmas Break

  The candle in this centerpiece still burns, though the dinner eaten around it is now merely leftovers, destined for ham sandwich lunches and microwaved dinners. The Grinch has been watched (classic animated version, of course) and many Christmas CDs listened to (though more await their turn than there are hours left in the holiday). […]

Tree of Fascination

  It’s the night before Christmas and all through my brain there are sighs of contentment because all I need to do tonight is sit and look at the pretty, pretty Christmas tree. Joan surprised me at Thanksgiving by giving me this tree, which I’d admired since the first time I saw it at their […]

Pastel Jungle Quilt

I sewed the label on this quilt last night, so now I’ve finished both the projects that had me in the doldrums earlier this month (the other one was the corn socks). As I mentioned in that earlier entry, I started this quilt back in October. I wanted to have it done before the baby […]

Brain Clutter

I sometimes wish my brain were more like my digital camera. When a photo makes me cringe, I can just delete it (unless it also amuses me, like this shot Mr. Karen took of me adjusting my slip, in which case I’ll happily post it on Flickr for all to see). I’d love to be […]


  This weekend I finally began working on our Christmas cards. I started off on a high note, finding the cards I bought last year in the first place I looked, but my motivation flagged when I realized that even though I have this lovely little binder to record addresses I seem to have lost […]

A Simple Request

Dear Charities Who Send Me Address Labels, Cut it out. I don’t send that much mail. I don’t know anyone who does in this age of direct debit, online bill pay, and e-mail. I can even make charitable contributions on the internet. Amazing, I know. The majority of my snail mail is greeting cards, and […]

Manual Labor

I didn’t get to the gym today, but I bet I lifted more weight than I would have if I had made it, because today was my part of Michigan’s turn for the big snowstorm and I shoveled and shoveled ’til my shoveler was sore. I shoveled in the morning so Mr. Karen could get […]

I Am Not a Girlie Girl

I don’t have many gifts to buy for Christmas but that doesn’t stop me from browsing. I was happy to see that Yahoo’s gift guide for this year focuses more on the type of gift rather than the type of person one might be buying for as they did in 2007. Last year, the “Gifts […]

The Secret to My Success

I need to do more research to confirm it, but I have a new theory that Clif bars in the Cool Mint Chocolate flavor are the key to happiness and productivity. I had one for pre-dinner last night (the meal that comes between work and driving home when I haven’t managed to get out of […]

Long Before I Was Born

  My mom drew this in 1934, when she was four, and I think it’s awesome, especially the no-armed floaty guy on the right there. Perhaps he is a jellyfish. Perhaps they are playing catch. Who is that on the left–someone I’m related to or a hat-wearing stranger? I don’t need to know the answers; […]

Socks of the Corn

These are the socks I was whining about weekend before last. As you can see, they are now finished. I decided that since I was so close to having them done that it was better to keep knitting rather than set them aside and let them lurk in my bag for who knows how long. […]

Dinner and a Show

Normally at this time I’d be feeling bummed about all the things I failed to get done this weekend (Christmas cards top that list this particular Sunday night) but instead I’m thinking back to last night and feeling glad Mr. Karen and I took some time away from our task lists to go out with […]

S.O.G. with P.I.P.

My childhood photo album skips from 1966 to 1973. In those years in between, my parents’ marriage was coming apart, and the chaos and changes that brought meant family photography was not high on anyone’s priority list, and what pictures were taken tended to get lost in the shuffle of Dad moving out and then […]

Shoulda Been a Banker

I would love to write an intelligent post about the auto bailout, but the whole situation just makes my head hurt and my stomach churn and my blood boil to the point where I’m not sure if I want to cry or throw up or punch someone. Something I am sure of is that one […]

Any Time Now

It’s 7:17 p.m. as I start typing this entry, and I thought I would be almost home by now. Instead I am waiting to hear back from the customer who added my e-mail address to an urgent support ticket at 4:09 p.m. Of course it was after 4 p.m. Urgent support requests never come in […]

Not Quite OCD

Ways in which I am like Monk: 1. I really, really wish the buttons on the sweater I am wearing today were pewter instead of gold-ish. Really. The sweater is shades of purple and shades of grey, and in my rules for color combinations, those hues require silver-toned accessories. 2. When selecting a locker at […]

It Was Okay

I just updated my book log with the last few titles I’ve finished, and, as I’ve been doing for the last year or so, also added them to my list on Goodreads. I sometimes waffle about what star rating to give books over there. I feel like a big meanie when I grant only 2 […]

Public Service Announcement

If, while poking through the dark recesses of the bathroom cupboard, you find a partly-used tube of deep conditioner that you have no recollection of purchasing, throw it out immediately. Do not, under any circumstances, put it on your hair. Trust me; I have experience with this. I am currently on bad hair day three, […]


I believe I might be part sled dog. It was 20 degrees (F) this morning when I left for my run, and the only part of me that got cold was my butt. My hands and feet and head were hot, even. Since the start of winter weather around here, my running’s been going better. […]

Crafty Doldrums

I spent some time earlier today rearranging some quilt blocks on my felt wall, hoping to rekindle my interest in that stalled project. In the four months since I last updated my quilt to do list, I’ve gotten only one thing on it done (and all I had to do on that one was the […]

It’s Holidailies Time

Holidailies is back, and of course I had to sign up again. How could I not? I’ve met the challenge every year I’ve had an online journal, starting back in 2002 when I was on Diary-X. It’s a Hat on Top tradition now, a constant in a world where so much is uncertain (especially here […]

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