Veni, Vidi, Ventus --
The randomly chaotic and crafty scribblings of a deranged, wannabe artist allowed too many colours in her Crayon box.

Surgeon General's Warning: Some content of "From Pooka's Crayon" may not be suitable for: work, blue-haired little old ladies, the politically-correct, rabid moonbats, uptight mothers, priests, chronic idiots, insurance claims agents, Democrats, children, small furry quadropeds from Alpha Centauri, or your sanity.

Friday, December 17, 2004

Oh, look, something like an update that doesn't involve me ranting. :D

Lost more weight. Not sure on poundage, but I'm definitely down to a 16 now. 18s are way too loose and baggy, and some 16s are even a little loose. If it's one of the W 16s, I've definitely got some extra room in them. Unfortunately, most of the 16 pants that I have are capris, or rather on the dressy side. Right,18s it is for now.

Need new bras, desperately. The band is so big now that I might as well not bother wearing one at all. NO, that is NOT an option for me. The girls need a sturdy boulder holder, thank you.

I'd made a decision that when I got the weight off, I was going back to the short bob in this icon. I did that today. Need to go back and lose another inch or two, but DG was protesting at the time, having gotten used to long hair on me again. Still going to fix it, though. And oh MAN, it feels GOOD to have my hair off. Looks so much better with it short, my hair is so fine and thin and straight that this actually gives it some lift.

AND losing the long straight hair makes me look a few years younger and like I lost even more weight. BONUS!

The Daddygod has introduced me to the fun of boy-cut underwear. Discovered today that I didn't even have the dreaded Palm Tree Underpants lurking in my undie drawer right before I took my shower. ACK. Well, the problem is, most of my underwear doesn't fit me anymore anyway (Yes, the Pooka desperately needs a shopping trip for clothing, especially essentials), and what did fit needs a washing.

So, DG, being the generous soul that he is (coughbullshitcough, he usually just goes commando these days and hasn't worn his man-panties in eons -- and I'm going to catch so much shit for man-panties but I don't CARE!), had me dig through his clean clothes basket and find a pair of his. Hmm. Well, they're damned comfortable. Not bad.

Boy-cuts are taking some adjusting, though I expect the female version of the boy-cut undies will be better. Now see, normally I'm a high-thigh cut bikini girl. No extra cloth anywhere, hips free. It's not the hips that are taking some adjusting, it's having all the extra undie material between the thighs that's feeling a little weird, but I know the female versions are cut a little different. I may just be a convert once I try them, and they're surprisingly CUTE on.

Insurance finally caved and decided I did indeed need Nexium (prevacid no longer worked right and I'd been on it for years, and tried everything else), and Mobic (Vioxx recalled, Celebrex and Bextra were both sulfa based and I was seriously allergic and besides they're going to recall them, too).

Feel a bit like a heathen here. My current favourite scent isn't a Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab mix, it's one that Nikki custom blended for me. It's a very Pooka smell, rather like spiced chocolate. Rich cocoa base, but not too sweet, a yummy dark bittersweet chocolate scent, with whispers of amber and sandalwood and something else I can't entirely pick out. Smells so good it makes ME want to do naughty things to myself.

Mope. Gotta road trip to Houston this weekend to do the family Christmas. Grandparents are reaching the point where any year might be our last together, so I have to endure the monster. Hoping to catch up with the Klash while we're down there, if she can take a break from packing shipping boxes to get soap out. :D With any luck, my monster will drive us crazy enough that it'll be a 48 hour trip.

So, SORCHA WENCH! Yoohoo, Sorcha -- aim for late Tuesday, maybe? Make sure we have your phone number before we go so we can give you a call and let you know if we're leaving late Monday or Tuesday morning to come home, if you're still planning on coming down and giving me my bestest gift of all -- a wench for X-Mas!

Saturday, October 16, 2004

I play video games so I can AVOID people

This post may not be safe for your children, your mother, little blue-haired ladies, your boss or any cow-orkers, or anyone easily offended by open and blatantly vicious hostility.

Yes, I'm even going to cut this one. You have been warned.

A Modest Treatise on Human Behaviour, or: I play video games so I can AVOID people!!


Scenario: RPG game, open server, involves people. Mistake 1. I play video games to avoid dealing with people, who are on the whole angst-ridden soap opera sheep who'd rather type with one hand than do something like, oh, ACTUALLY PLAY THE FUCKING GAME.

Personality A: Pervatronic Cockmaster, ie, the Pussy Hopper. When you have a very single 36 year old geek who's only idea of a date is getting his hand drunk and then having to sneak up on it to masturbate because otherwise it would flee in terror from the slime dripping from him, who is such an absolute fucking cock that you could suck his forehead and he'd jizz out of the top of his head, that suddenly is given a position of power within a game, you might as well just write off any intellectual attempts at RP if you aren't willing to break out the kneepads and mouthwash and honey there isn't enough fucking bleach in the world to handle a stain like that. Ew. His entire attention span is focused on the newest and latest set of boobs to bound across his screen, thereby removing any and all interaction with the last set of breasts, particularly if she refuses to play along with his attempts to perfect the One Handed Method of Typing.

If he tells you the truth about anything, you'd never know it because by the time you figure out just how revoltingly slimy he is, you've been lied to so many times that you'd have to go outside and check the condition of the weather yourself to be able to believe it. An ego that the Great Wall of China couldn't contain, the entire world (or at least the server) MUST revolve around him, or he degenerates rapidly into ....

Personality B: The Drama Queen. (What's worse is that Personality A is also a B, and there are few things more abhorrent in this world than a degenerate slimeball who apparently at some point in his pathetic little life had aspirations of staring in the worst-written soap operas on TV, failed, and decided that he would turn the server into his own As NWN Turns.) "WHAT? I'm not the center of attention?? Someone else does something better than me? Someone else gets recognition? This cannot be!"

You start to roll your eyes when Pansie, UberQueen of Vanity, minces into a scene and promptly must throw everyone nearby into the center of his/her latest ill-contrived desperate plea for attention. Then you consider rolling their eyes, after carefully plucking them right out of their fucking skull with a spork. Then you just want to pluck your own eyes out so you don't have to see the further bullshit going on around you.

Personality C: The Psycho Hose Beast. Married, with children. Part of a long family tradition of anti-psychotic medication which they frequently neglect to take, thus resulting in some of the most Oscar winning (and ultimately WTF? mindless) performances to date. Cybers like a rabbit on speed, even so far as to take it out of game and into webcam arena -- while forbidding spouse to have any contact whatsoever with the opposite sex without spawning yet another Psycho Moment.

Anything you say can and will be used against you. Anything you do NOT say can and will be used against you. Anything they mystically perceive that you might be THINKING can and will be used against you. Just accept it, deal with, and pray that someone finds a way to write a killfile into the fucking game.

Personality D: Mr Absentee Ballot. Favourite phrase: AFK.

"Hey, let's go do this!" Great. Fabulous. Off we go on a ... AFK. Right. So, we'll just sit and watch all the spells and buffs expire, while we're in the middle of OH SHIT NOT ANOTHER FREAKIN CAVE TROLL ATTACK. "Did I miss anything?" Hey, fucking brain trust, do all of the corpses of the party you abandoned YET AGAIN tell you anything? No, probably not.

Loves to utter his signature phrase in the worst possible places. Spends so much time AFK you wonder why they fucking bother to sign on at all. The entirety of your playing session consists of maybe 20% action or RP, and 80% of Hurry Up and Wait.

Personality E: Captain Ooopsie. Fireball miss its mark? Again? For the fifth time? Bigby's Hand ... on a fellow party member instead of the nasty bad guy attacking? The Balor summoned without a Protection from Evil which is thus totally uncontrolled and hostile to everyone INCLUDING the caster? Chain lightning that zaps half the party? The SECOND chain lightning that gets the ones the first one missed?

A sure sign Captain Ooopsie has been there. That, or all the corpses of his friends that he leaves smouldering in his wake.

Personality F: Whiny Bitch, with a side of My Dick's Bigger than Yours. So's his mouth. Unfortunately, not his skill. Confrontational aggressive asshole with a big side order of Can't Follow Through and runs like a chickenshit coward when called on his bullshit. Always starts shit he's never about to finish. Prefers to pick on people he knows he can beat, and picks on those that are far more powerful ONLY in places where PvP is impossible and you can't turn the fucktard into a nice cock-shaped soot mark on the wall.

When you do finally catch Whiny Bitch in a PvP zone with a Put up or Shut up, he invariably loses, cries foul, degenerates into language his mother would slap him for if she walked into the room and caught him on the computer after his bedtime, screams that he'll have you banned for nuking him in a fight HE started, runs crying to the DMs that you're just a big poopy head, has NO concept of IC/OOC separation and thus harasses you the moment you sign on in private messages, calling you names and once again opening his fat fucking mouth because he's SO superior to you because he can get away with it in PMs because he's too far away for you to pour him a nice steaming mug of Shut the Fuck Up.

Personality G: Lonely Heart Club. Often has a smattering of Personality A, the Pervo. Will, within five minutes of meeting your character, declare undying love for said character. Within ten minutes, has shifted OOC to hurl himself bodily at your feet and grovel to be the sole object of your affection. BTW, Lonely Heart is married, and instead of logging out of the fucking game and turning off the computer to go fuck his wife who is probably wondering why she married the SOB in the first place, chooses to sex up his best friend in the world (his hand) while trying to get every single character that he has and every single character that you have together into eternal matrimony.

Avoid at all costs, as Lonely Heart turns into Obsessive Stalker and will pitifully leap to hump your leg the second you make the mistake of logging in. Also checks his buddy list frequently to see if you are logged on. Freaks out when you don't log in with a character connected to his, and immediately tries to attach himself to the next one.

Personality H: The Thieving Groupie. Fixates on a particular character, and emulates them to every degree possible. Got a neat story? Too bad, the Groupie will immediately glomp onto it and use it for themselves. Neat armour? The Groupie must have it. And will. A certain style of playing, or particular skills? Never fear, upon spotting them, the Groupie will immediately do everything in their power to make sure they have them too. Nothing is sacred, nothing is safe. The Groupie also glomps onto your RP partners, for if they are going to be YOU, they must also have EVERYTHING that you have and thus embark on their complete conquest by coming up with anything they possibly can to steal your partner away.

Personality I: Lying Cheating Whore. Goes very well with Personality A, as they fucking deserve each other. Will deliberately lie to players -- not characters, PLAYERS -- in order to make sure that they have every dick nearby, and still get away with it. This includes the dick/s they are currently chasing. Manages to run off good players on a regular basis once the lies are discovered. Character married? No big deal to the Whore. Why, she was even married .... the entire time she was chasing not only two single characters, but trying to steal the very married husband of her "best friend." Kills off said husband (who never existed on the server but only serves as a pity ploy to capture more dick) just to go for the few remaining men she hasn't managed to fuck.

Is also married behind the keyboard, to a man who is also online and in the game, but rarely if ever plays the character supposedly married to his because she'd far rather go play the Whore and continue to manipulate cock.


As those of you who are still with me have probably figured out, I can fill the entire fucking alphabet.

Any resembles of prior personalities to real people is absofuckinlutely intentional. None of the above personalities are made up in any way, much to my eternal dismay. Every one of these complete fucktards is completely real, and in truth worse than I've described.

Now ... really. Are there ANY QUESTIONS as to why I prefer solo RPGs?

I didn't think so.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Radio Silence?

Daddygod is forcing me to break radio silence and post.

I went to the doctor today for my required High Risk Category flu shot.

I have lost a total of 75 POUNDS, people. 75 pounds. The Amazing Shrinking Pooka!

I have gone from a 28/30 to a 16/18.

Even with my massive breasts, I am in an XL t-shirt without it looking just WRONG on me.

My blood pressure was Perfect.

The recalled Vioxx was replaced by Mobic, which I'm going to test out. All my scripts were refilled without even a blink, including her OFFERING me hydrocodone for the Very Bad Pain Days. Didn't even have to ask.

Going to try the little purple pill, switching to Nexium instead of Prevacid to try to help that pain, too. We'll see if insurance covers it, otherwise, I'm stuck with Prevacid.

Of course, my arm is already starting to throb. *sigh* But at least I shouldn't have to worry about pneumonia this year. Last year SUCKED. Christ, I went from thinking I was dying to praying I'd die and get it over with.

So. There's your update.

IE -- Not Dead Yet.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Public Service Announcement

If you live in Texas, especially N. Texas, do NOT go outside onto concrete today without your shoes on.

You guys know I hate wearing shoes. I'd rather be barefoot. Do most of my gardening that way.

In the short time it took for me to harvest the cayennes ... I have FIRST DEGREE BURNS on the bottoms of my feet. Yes, I knew it was hurting at the time, but there wasn't that much to do, so I toughed it out. I have very tough feet and a massively high level of pain tolerance down there (unless it's cold they're touching), so I figured it would be all right. Bad call.

20 minutes later, my feet are still scarlet, a little puffy, and HURT. BAD. DG asked me to go look at something, and I almost shrieked when my feet hit the floor. I 'ow ow ow'd most of the way anyway. When you consider that I'm usually not very vocal about pain, that should say a lot.

I *burned* my feet.


Update: I *seriously* burned my feet. They are amazingly swollen, hotter'n'hell, creasing up through the scarlet -- they look BAD. If they haven't improved by tomorrow, it's a doctor trip. Oh yes, and blistering nicely.

Yeah. *That* bad. For me to willingly go to the doctor, who I haven't seen since last September ... Yeah.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Word from our "sponsors"

Flatout ... yummy.

Talking about Flatout "bread" here, in particular the Harvest Wheat (they didn't have the Garden Spinach, or it would have gone home too). It's like an uber-tortilla/pita bread cross. Long and flat, with lots of options on how to use it.

Yes, I know, there's brown sugar in it. I consider that a perfect trade off for a very tasty flatbread with whole wheat flour, soy flour, oats, sunflower seeds, millet, and flax. Yes, I probably shouldn't be eating it (yes, I do see the corn syrup, thank you, but for 2 grams of fat, and 5 grams of protein, seems to be it's a good trade off for regular bread. And I almost never eat bread anymore anyway. I consider it a treat after the day I've had.

It's also currently being used to dip into Athenos Roasted Garlic Hummus, with the occasional bit of mozzarella tossed on. If it wasn't so late at night, and me facing the Heartburn Faerie if I did it, there'd be cucumber slices joining it. Wish to hell I had a ripe tomato. Hell, wish I could eat unprocessed cucumbers without suffering, I'd skip the Flatout entirely and just use cuke slices in the hummus. That's tasty!

Yes, there's a bit of corn syrup in the hummus, but it is WAY down the list in the final three. I don't think there's any at all in the Red Pepper hummus still waiting in the fridge.

There is a sugar-free bread out, I think made by Nature's Own, but ... man, regular bread and hummus just loses something in the translation.

Now, what's REALLY funny is that they also make a "CarbDown" version of the Flatout. Okay, that's not the funny part. The funny part is that while the Harvest Wheat and Sundried Tomato have 18 carbs ... the Carbdown has *24*. That amused me. A lot.

So, 'pita' bread, hummus, cheese, grapes, cherries, and the occasional Mauna Loa dry roasted macadamia. (DG, I'm pretty sure the tilipia had already gone over when you cooked it, it's funky fishy. Drat.)

Hmm. I could sprinkle some sunflower seeds on this, too.

I know I still need to completely push and eliminate the sugars and refined flours entirely. But do you have any idea how hard it is to do? Not the not eating them part, but finding replacements for normal foods like bread that don't contain anything I'm not supposed to have. Read labels, it's just insane.

Interesting to note how my appetite has changed. I can be utterly tummy-growling leap up and throttle brain starving, and yet only a small portion of food on this "diet" fills me up. "Serving sizes" that seemed so painfully small before now make sense.

For the Flatout, a serving size is half a flatbread, with whatever you put on it. Now, mind you, half a flatbread is about the size of a single pita. Just the cheese, and the hummus, I have half a flatbread left right. I've eaten four or five grapes, and a dozen cherries.

And my tummy is saying "NO MORE, ALL FULL DOWN HERE!"

One pita, not even a full 2 tbs serving of hummus (I've had maybe 1 tbs), one slice mozzarella, and the fruit. Full. Stuffed. No, more thanks. Wafer thin mint? BOOM.

I think I'm really starting to like this.

Had another "Where is my ass?" moment in the tub earlier. Just one of those points where the amount of weight you've lost hits home hard, when you finally really realize how much is gone. Actually, it was more of a "When did we get a bigger bathtub?" reaction.

Man, I need new clothes, BAD.

One Step Forward

No pics yet, watering was more important. Freakin Texas summer heat.

I was wrong on the mums -- go figure. Remembered the colours wrong, it's the tips that are white, and the centers that are the deep purple/red colour. So I think it's "Fiction." Cool.

Pulled up the four cuke plants that were in pots and tossed them, after getting the last two cukes off. They weren't really doing much, Cukezilla is producing a lot more, and that gave me two less pots to water. Also ripped out the flea beetle damaged bush beans. They were starting to produce again, but not enough to make a difference with the pole beans going crazy. Right, outta there. Had to pull up one of the sunflowers. Thing 1 was a little careless with a garbage bag and damaged the stalk too bad for it to survive. Sigh. At least it wasn't the rust one, and the other sunflowers are doing fine.

Didn't get the Sweet 100 I wanted to pull out, though. I'm not sure that I CAN. Cukezilla has totally taken over the tomato cage, I'm not sure I can even get into the pot to pull it out, so I guess it stays.

We were out of full sized tomatoes, and DG had a dinner thing up at work last night, so we bought two. YUCK! Store bought tomatoes. Nasty. I sliced up two huge cukes from Cukezilla, and put a bunch of cherry tomatoes on the tray with the store sliced ones. Store maters got ignored. The cherry tomatoes from my garden VANISHED, he said people were standing over the tray just tossing them down, and he brought home very few cuke slices (only for Thing 1 to munch on). If that's not enough proof that you just need to grow your own, I don't know what is.

The new bronze foliage canna looks fantastic in the big pot with the bright green spearmint. Score!

Um. I probably underestimated the number of strawberry plants. Found another 5 runners on a different side that were rooting in the grass. Gack.

Peppers! (You knew you couldn't get out of this post without an update, right?) LOTS of cayennes to pick tomorrow. The alcaldes are still blooming and making more peppers. Chocolate bell is getting much bigger, closer to the point that it will start changing colour. Other bells are happily growing away. Got to remind myself to start stringing the chiles and cayennes tonight for them to dry.

Then again, it'll be hard to keep em in the house when my Dad gets here. I have a feeling some will be going home with him.

DG got the blade on the lawnmower switched out, so tomorrow the great backyard jungle will get mowed. Hopefully that will help with the mosquito problem. I got MAULED last night, even wearing OFF. Damn things.

The weeds and bermuda grass are just out of control. It's a helpless feeling. It's SO damn hot out there, and the weatherman said to expect it to just get hotter. Weeding in 100* and no shade ... This goes beyond Pooka wilt. Had a little help getting everything done today. The sprinkler was on, so I just worked through it. Came in drenched, but didn't have the heat problem. Of course, it also washed off all the bug pseudo-repellent too. Can't win for losing.

And I feel ... awful. On top of everything else, I feel hammered. I hurt, and I'm tired. Not sleeping real well, lots of tossing and turning and waking up exhausted. Leaves me dreadfully brain dead.

Having computer trouble, too. DG's video card croaked this weekend, complete death. My CGI proggies keep crashing when I try to use them on mine, and I'm getting the wonky STOP error messages again like I did when a RAM chip went bad on me before. Bad news if it is. Can't afford to replace the chip, not with having to spend the money to repair DG's computer.

So, unless I can transfer all my stuff to his computer, which is a pain and a HUGE multi-gig undertaking, I'm near worthless for artwork right now, with two jobs I desperately, DESPERATELY need to finish.

And of course my mother has made another of her Annoucements, and she'll be here this weekend to help ruin yet another birthday. Now, before you think the visit is a sweet effort on her part, she's not coming up here for ME. She's coming to take one of the girls, then a week later, trade out for the other one. She's coming for the summer visit, not because of any parental obligation to her offspring. These are the only grandkids she has, and at the rate my sister is going, the only ones she'll ever have, so she feels the need to at least do something about it.

Now, like with most families, there's a Mama's kid and a Daddy's kid. Guess which one she is taking away from me ON MY BIRTHDAY? Right. My girl. Don't even pretend to think that isn't completely deliberate on her part. She KNOWS.

The funny thing is, I can't even burst into tears in frustration over it. It's always something, and if it WASN'T always something, I wouldn't be handling it as well as I am.

Monday, July 12, 2004


I'll have you know that is a THREE POUND cucumber from Cukezilla. One of about 11 cukes I brought in off the thing today. Had to put the shotgun slug with this one to give some perspective in size.

Bell pepper brought in (had to wait till the second trip, since there was a baby praying mantis out there that I did NOT want to disturb. Move in, make yourself at home, snacks are right there, have a good time!).

And a bunch of cayennes, and two more chiles. My chile plant now has bunches more new green babies and still more blooms.

Mandatory pepper pic.

... To the Batcave!

After I was a very good girl and did not beg and grovel at the store for DG to let me buy Batman: The Animated Series, Season 1, Volume 1 on DVD ...

When we got home, he made me close my eyes.

And then he put it in my hands. He'd already bought it for me for my birthday, but because I was a big girl and didn't wail...

I'm now watching BATMAN!

When they announced that they were releasing Season 1 on DVD for the first time, and they were releasing it in July, I swore up and down that it was MEANT to be a Pooka birthday present.

I ever catch Bruce Timm at a con, he's signing this baby for me. And my big Animated book. And ... uh. I hope Timm has a limit to how many things he'll sign, because I could keep him, Paul Dini, and Eric Rodomski occupied for HOURS. :)

(Why do I mention this? Oh, because of BATCON here in October, in Plano!)

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Pooka's Shrinking Soapbox

Atkins can kiss my deflating fat white ass.


So, my clothes are continuing to get bigger and bigger. Looked at myself in the mirror before a shower the other day, and wondered where the hell my ass was. Face it, I got enough junk in the trunk for three sistahs, but it looks like I'm down to two now. I wasn't totally disgusted by what I saw.

Of course, having much less ass explains why I can't keep my pants and shorts from falling down around my ankles. Thank God for hips.

But Atkins. Yeah. Kiss here, pal.

I just had a very happy Pooka dinner. Baked Tilapia (and even if you don't like fish, I recommend trying it. Very delicate, slightly lemony, and overall a damn tasty fish), green beans, some mozzarella cheese, grapes, and strawberries. Joy, happy tummy!

All of it is on my diet. The Four F's is what I follow:

-- Fresh Fruit
-- Fresh Veggies
-- Fish
-- Fowl

That's the primaries for it. No non-natural sugars, nothing fried, no organ meats, low fat dairy, no refined bleached flour, only 2 eggs a week (which is fine, since eggs aggravate my IBS, AND are bad for arthritis).

Weight is coming off, I'm HAPPY eating (Um, I sort of ate almost 2 pounds of cherries yesterday by myself), I don't feel deprived in any way, and I LIKE all the foods I can eat. It doesn't push lots of meat, it doesn't push lots of fat. The only real carbs are from perfectly natural sugars in fruits and veggies (pasta and stuff is limited, unless it's whole wheat or corn, etc).

I honestly don't miss soda that much. I don't have cravings for things I'm not supposed to eat, which is good since DG has been bringing home popsicles and ice cream and cookies lately. (BAD, BAD diabetic!) I don't really even miss chocolate, but I'm sure the craving will hit eventually.

Nightwisp, I DID try Diet RC. And WOW. Diet RC is GOOD. But. Yeah. But. Splenda seems to give me a headache, just like aspartame. Damnit. But at least if I crave soda, Diet RC doesn't have the nasty funky chemical taste of aspartame, and Excedrin actually works on the headache, unlike with aspartame.

Now. It's been about three weeks or so since I started this. The diet is designed for RSD/CRPS patients to help control pain. So far, I'm still exhausted most of the time, but I figure I'm still just adjusting to the detox. And I have noticed that although I'm wiped out, I don't *seem* to be hurting as bad and as constantly. However ...

My IBS is almost GONE. GONE. Cutting the sugar out did wonders, and though if I indulge in dairy, or things that I know aggravate it, I still have problems, they aren't nearly as severe. Normal safe meals don't send me diving for the bathroom. If I avoid triggers, I'm doing damn well, and the horrible cramps are a thing of the past.

Getting rid of the sugar and organ meats (oooo, my poor sausages and Hebrew National hot dogs, I do miss YOU at least) and going more natural with the diet has also improved the severity of the acid reflux disease. I don't desperately have to make sure I take Prevacid every single day now. I can go a few days without it and not be utterly horribly miserable.

And the horrible menstrual cramps that had been plaguing me were almost nil this time. Period started about a week and a half to two weeks after starting the diet, and I wasn't curled up in agony.

On Atkins, I was sick all the time. My body couldn't handle the high fat, high dairy, high red meat content. I was miserable, and missing the GOOD things, like fruits and "high carb" veggies. Reflux and IBS were trying to kill me. Quickly, at least, but still trying to kill me.

I can eat those forbidden fruits now. I'm still losing weight, I'm healthier already, and with my IBS and reflux clearing up, far more comfortable.

Listen to yo' mamas, kiddos. Eat your damn fruits and veggies, and like em. They're good for you!

( The opinions expressed by Pooka do not necessarily reflect the opinions of anyone else other than Pooka. No Atkins supporters were bodily mutilated to create this post. )

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Got Sun?

... flowers, that is.

A dwarf type of sunflower with darker orange petals, rusty-chocolate eyes, and a repeat bloomer up and down the stalks, as you can see.

My butterfly bush seems to be loving the weather. It's absolutely covered with tiny purple flowers in those big clusters, and smells yummy!

As you can see, my Maid of Orleans jasmine not only survived the winter, but is now happily blooming and making wonderful jasmine smells on that side of the yard.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Got Chiles?

Crazy pepper lady strikes again.

OH! And my biiiiig tomato plant now has 7 new green 'maters growing. YEEEEES!

You won't find the Chile Alcalde I'm growing with a regular search. Native Seeds is the only place that carries them, and they specialize in trying to save Native American food crops. A wonderful place, I plan on ordering far too much from them for next year.

The Alcalde is a Mild-medium hot pepper that goes sweet when red. I can't wait to try them.

I have a great double handful of alcaldes now. Mmm. Time to string!

My first cayennes.

Aren't the Christmas limas cute?

Love love love eggplant blossoms. Need to get pics of the eggplant already picked. Before they're eaten.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Space WHAT?

A word to the wise: if you grow Spacesaver cucumbers, do not give them space. I mean it. Seriously. Put them in little pots like the packet recommends. If you don't, and make the mistake of putting them in the ground, be prepared to see nothing but cukes. Everywhere.

I have 10' long cuke vines. The single small plant I tucked into an empty corner of the strawberry bed because I'm such a wuss that I couldn't just abandon the little seedling has now taken over half the yard and has set its sights on invading the airport. They're climbing tomato cages, pulling down pepper plants, and spreading like kudzu.

They'd be quite pretty, really, they're constantly blooming and the vines are neat to look at, but the damn things are taking over. And I pulled only a single full size cuke off it, and there's another smaller one ready in a day or two. Otherwise, just little cuke nubbins. All that, and no fruit. Grr.

Two eggplant inside now, blooms all over the plant, two baby eggplant starting. I have bell peppers growing (6 on the one by the eggplant, 2 on the chocolate bell), the tomatoes seem to be gearing up to bloom again. Harvested 2 cayennes and at least 8 chilis so far. More chilis ready this weekend That is such a gorgeous, sensual red on the chilis and cayennes. Yum.

I need to learn how to rope the chilis up to let them dry. Luckily I have those sites bookmarked.

My cayenne plant is now becoming a damn tree. It's huge, and just covered with long fat peppers. I'm really, really enjoying peppers. With all the bug problems this year, and how disappointing a lot of the garden was, I think I may stick with neat stuff like peppers and not spend the money and stress on growing stuff like zucchini and squash. Hate resorting to a store, but ... you know.

Dwarf sunflowers have happily opened their little heads. The beans ... well, I've almost given up trying to pick them. It's a gigantic shambling mound. Eeek! And the flea beetles have gone crazy on all of the beans. The damage is just astonishing. I don't have leaves, I have lace doilies.

(Thing 2 moment: Mama spots a bean that was overlooked, obviously for some time. The thing is wider than my thumb, and about 9" long. Thing 2: "Holy shit!" I couldn't even scold her for that one, it was my reaction, too)

Cowpeas seem to have given up for the year. I think I'll stick with the green beans in pots and put the cowpeas in the ground next time. Might get more from both that way.

First round of blooms on the cannas have gone, second round started. No blooms yet on Madame Butterfly, which is just continuing to get taller and taller. Hmm. She goes down by the fence next time, and the shorter Lucifers for the bed, I think.

So. This is Texas. And you expect to see things wilting from the heat. NOT from drowning. One of my basil plants is wilting and crying for help, even after we've poured the water out of the pot -- twice. Had to do the same with one of the thunbergia pots.

Of course, Six Flags got flooded out and had to close down, so I consider myself lucky.

Erosion in the yard is horrible, though. We're going to need to do some serious work to keep the lower half of the yard from being dangerous. Can't walk down there without twisting an ankle, no matter how careful you are, and it's a real hazard for DG when he mows.

I've given up and gone for the Deep Woods OFF to keep the mosquitos away. Problem is, I think they like that, too. They're everywhere, in clouds (no, they're not gnats, the skeeters are that bad), and very very aggressive.

Kitiara ... I love you. Worship the Empress!

I'm settling down with my new copy of Carla Emery's "The Encyclopedia of Country Living" with a big stupid smile and a nice tall glass of tea and mint.

The book is even better than Kit has said, and has that wonderfully aesthetically pleasing paper that makes such a neat noise when you turn pages. Yes, I'm a book geek. But the book ...

My only complaint: it needs wider margins for notes! ;)

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Green Arm Indeed

Finally found me a nice Aloe. Considering keeping it inside, only, Sir Ozymandius is the type of monster to physically hurl plants that are in his way out of the window. Need to find a good outdoor spot for it.

Definitely need to take some babies off the hens and chicks and get them potted.

Wandering through WallyWorld's plant department, I stopped and blinked a few times at the potted cannas. First off -- those POOR things. I'd have bought them all if I could, just because seeing cannas in ITTY BITTY 8" pots about gave me a heart attack. Plant Abuse! But what got me was seeing some of the more unusual (read as: expensive) foliage on some of them. The dark bronzes, and the varigateds. Well ...

Yeah, hush. I bought two of them. They were more expensive than buying your generic bagged bulbs, but none of the bags I looked at this spring had foliage like this. And the number of shoots was amazing on the two I got. LOTS of eyeroots for separation this spring. No idea what colour the flowers will be, but the foliage alone is that pretty. Yum!

One immediately got planted into the monster pot where the basil finally gave up and croaked from all the water. (Note to self: trim roots and hang basil to finish drying tomorrow). The other went down by the fence with the Lucifers. Yes, I managed to get both planted today. Go me.

Of course, in the process of planting the one down by the fence, I noticed that two of my Lucifers had been MAULED. I don't know WHAT took them out. No sign of anything cutting them at the stalks, but they were just laying on the ground, limp and pathetic. It's not rot, the soil was so dry (I know, I know, they all got watered immediately) I couldn't get a ball from it even 8" down when I dug the hole. But the others were just fine, so it's not a lack of water. Grrr.

Also found some lovely chrysanthemums (At least, so far I THINK they are, but no site has had a pic of one like this) at Lowe's when I was trying to find a decent hanging basket big enough for my last thunbergia. Finally found a basket, relatively cheap, with a quality coir liner. So I bought two, just in case. Anyway ....

DG ... get this ... DG MADE me buy these mums. He wouldn't let me put them up when I saw how much I was spending (damn fish emulsion ain't cheap). They aren't the painted daisies, but they're a daisy class. Deep red/purple outsides, bleeding to white, with typical centers. Really utterly stunning. I'll get pics tomorrow and see if anyone can help me ID them. Not even my Sunset book helped.

Now the problem is finding a good place with partial afternoon shade and early morning full sun for them to thrive. I know mums usually get full sun, but afternoon sun here is HOT. HOT HOT HOT. Baking sap boiling in the stems hot.

And the house faces north/south, leaving the backyard completely east/west. Full sun pretty much most of the day, except for where landscape (trees, the fence) shades it. There's a spot by the back door that might work (may have to try to move a zinnia to put it there), but I don't know if it'll drain well enough to keep the mums from rotting this winter. Going to try to take a few cuttings from it.

Yes, I finally remembered to get rooting hormone. So the salvia and a few other goodies are going to play the propogation game. Will probably ask for some of the Rose of Sharon from my neighbor, too. Then again, I used to root those by cutting and just sticking in the ground. I'm surprised my parents let me live when all of them sprouted and grew.

Whooo, brain fart. Um.

Black hole.

OH! Strawberries! Good God. Repeat. A lot.

So, all of them are putting out runners. Lots and lots and LOTS of strawberry runners. (Note to self: Get some of the already rooted runners into new pots. Soon. Immediately. Like, tomorrow. Lazy bitch.)

I have strawberry plants growing IN MY GRASS now, because Cukezilla had them hidden so I couldn't move the runners before they rooted. Yes. I have a lawn of strawberries around the bed. I mean, I know people have used them as ground covers, but that's ridiculous!

Maybe I used a little TOO much compost in that bed.

So, I started out with around 15 strawberry plants this year, in a big 4x4 bed, with a 2x2 center. A pretty good amount of plants for a family of four, even with the bird and slug problems.

Now. Each plant -- every single plant -- has at least 4 runners on it. Each runner usually produces at least 2-3 new plants if they can find soil to root.

I have strawberry plants growing in my lawn. The bed is completely overwhelmed with baby plants. I have no idea where the hell I'm going to put some 50 strawberry plants. I don't even want to think about how many are out there, and there's no way I'm going to try to count.

I do have that new hanging basket, since I bought two, that I didn't have a use for yet. I was thinking about transplanting one of the thunbergia that's in the fence pots into it, but ... ah, I think the strawberries need it more. So, that should take care of 2-3 plants, and will solve the slug problems for at least that pot -- though not the birds.

I should have 2-3 long window-box type planters, and strawberries don't have too terribly deep root systems. Maybe another 8-12 or so plants can go in there. Should probably keep it to no more than 2 or 3 for the shorter ones, though.

May end up having to use them as groundcover, and put them into the flower bed in the front. I don't want to use the 55 gallon barrel halves, since it would be more prudent to put plants with more elaborate root systems in them. Be good for tomatoes and peppers and carrots.

Oh, and I saw some WEIRD bugs on my cowpeas earlier. Got to get pics of these things tomorrow and get them IDd. I mean WEIRD. Not just the usual stinkbugs and ants, but these giant things that looked like Alien/Predator Queen Brood Ants. And they're blooming and producing again! I'd almost given up and gotten ready to pull them.

Fish emulsion to feed, and ... man, I don't know what to do with the skeery bugs. Really long dissection hemostats and a bucket of soapy water or something.