A Quick Goat Note

In an earlier post – Got Your Goat – I ended saying that I didn’t know of an appropriate goat quote. I just walked into my living room to a Julia Roberts movie where she said, “Happiness isn’t Happiness without a violin-playing goat”. So there you go. You can thank Julia Roberts for that. Who said Notting Hill was a complete waste? 😉


Shut yo mouth!

Or possibly better titled, Get your fingers out of your mouth and stop touching my damn food! Or, possibly, Raina actually is a freak when it comes to germs, and may be judging you while you eat!

It’s no secret to those that know me that I have an aversion to germs, especially that coming from people’s mouths (blah)! I have considered lysol-ing the incessant cougher on the bus who was clearly too ill to be in public. Let me take you back a few months to what was probably a prime example of how I can’t do germs, or floor crunchies. I’ll follow that up with a delightful tale of a full bore bat shit break down. If you’re squeamish, you may just want to skip this one.

During a recent training at work, we were asked to learn and apply mindfulness as a method for reducing stress in our Veteran population. We spent a lot of time doing deep breathing and other similar activities (I know, I know-hard job, right?). Part of this process was something called Mindful Eating, where you eat a raisin, and focus on mindfully looking at it, smelling it, and ultimately eating it. I get it…slowing down and savoring your food? We could all use some of that..

So began the experiment. Step one: Pass around a container of raisins, and everyone grab one.

With their fingers. Out of the same container of unwrapped, sticky, raisins.


Now…I am about half way through this line of people waiting patiently for their germ riddled treat. “I can totally do this, these are my coworkers…it’s ok”, I think, as I grab my (still germ riddled,  but I am damn ok with it) raisin.

And the exercise begins.  We hold it up and look at it (I’m ok at this point), we turn it over in our fingers (got it, I’m still cool), and even smell it. We’re being deliberate with our food, and I am totally behind this. Then the leader says “Now, place the raisin in your mouth.”.

Insert screeching tires of a big-ass Mack truck coming to a halt.

Huh? There’s god knows what on this sticky thing. Eek! Up until this point, my eyes and the eyes of all of my coworkers have been closed, but upon hearing the news that I had to throw what is now (I’m pretty sure) a mechanism of germ warfare into my mouth, I was up, alert, and my mindfulness spell was broken.

Not wanting to appear ass-ish, I continued to look at it. Mindfulness is Mindfulness, right? Now, I am pretty into my raisin, and am looking at it when I hear a soft whisper next to me: “Crap”.  Apparently my coworker dropped his raisin. This is seriously not conducive to mindfulness, so I help. We eventually find it under the desk and he goes back to his mindfulness activity, and pops the raisin in his mouth.

Whole. Lee. Shit.

He shrugs and chomps along merrily, while I stare in both shock and impressed awe. “You ate floor crunchies!!”, I whisper. No matter, he is clearly more Zen than I.  I eventually rub the raisin on my pants, take a nibble, and throw the rest in my tissue, hoping to high hell no one I work with is ill.  Needless to say, this activity-not my favorite.

So, by now  you have a good sense of how my brain works based on the past blogs (you may want to read the one about home improvement, if you have other questions. You can find that here). And yes, I do realize that this is plain silly and that one raisin probably won’t kill me (at least we better hope!!)  Flash forward to this past Sunday. Let me set the scene.

A Moroccan restaurant in Belltown, a 50th birthday party for someone I don’t know and 20+ of her friends, mostly softer science social workers (think crystal healing, Reiki, Qigong therapies), clinical social workers, dog park friends-a good smattering of the people I spend time with in real life. Just…well, strangers.

Let me also take time to note a few things:

  • I drove in downtown after not eating for way too many hours
  • I wasn’t planning on drinking
  • You eat with your hands at this place. With Strangers. And their hands.
Course 1: came with bread, so you could use that as kind of a spoon of sorts. I was all over that AND i got to pick my bread first out of the basket-“take that!”, I thought. The people across from me used their bread nicely and stayed away from my side of the plate. YAY!  Round one: Win!
Course 2: ground chicken and egg in flaky pastry mixed with cinnamon and yumminess, topped with powdered sugar. Messy, but delicious and sticky. Crap. It was the raisin all over again!!!  Nick looked at me to make sure I was ok….the people across from me were still staying on their side of the treat, so I was cool. Then, the ineviatble happened…they ate off of my side! Not only was I hungry and had someone invading my food territory, but they also touched the other part of my side! EEP! So there I was…less food than I had liked, no wine, and people eating my crunchies. Dammit. Round 2: Draw??? Meh. 
Somewhere between Course 2 and 3, I had the opportunity to move over to my own table, and for all that is holy, this was a good thing, as I was about to lose my bunny fluff.
The waiters brought up dish after dish, starting at the first table and I was at the last…what I didn’t realize was that all the food is just brought out and placed on the tables, encouraging you to move about and pick and choose from each plate.  So, I am waiting to see what all will be brought out when I start people watching.
Again. Whole. Lee. Shit.
Finger suckers.
I watched a gal grab food, eat it, lick her fingers and then grab more food. At this point, I am no longer hungry and am ready to get the hell out. People at this point are noticing my discomfort and offer to bring me food, since I am in the corner in a booth. “Oh, no…I am good”. I look to Nick with the “holy hell, did you see that lady?!?!” look, and he giggles, as he knows what I am about to say, and is already looking for an escape route. 
More food is offered, to which I politely decline, after leaning over to Nick in my best whisper scream “Get me out of here! I’m hungry, and there’s people touching the food!!! I can’t do this!!!”.  The waiter, seeing me obviously distraught asks what I need, and eventually brings me sweet mint tea to help my tummy, which at this point is all sorts of pissed at me. But now, as I am checking out, and drinking warm tea, people are concerned. 
Aw, crap. Can’t a girl just eat some non-contaminated food in peace?!
Ah ha! Salvation! A kebab is brought out and I swoop down on it like a bald eagle after a hungry salmon, feeling a little like Gollum, but happily nibble on my people free food in my corner away from everyone’s sticky fingers, sighing. I still want to get the hell out of there and go eat some food, but for now, I no longer feel like I am going to lose it. Round 3: Win.
Bottom line-Marrakesh is awesome, but bring people you know, and possibly not me, unless you’re willing to use a fork.
Hope you got a giggle out of this!  Here’s to you in germ-less happiness!
“I’ve long believed that good food, good eating, is all about risk. Whether we’re talking about unpasteurized Stilton, raw oysters or working for organized crime ‘associates,’ food, for me, has always been an adventure” ― Anthony Bourdain

Things I am not…

Blame it on last night’s trip to Baron, or that its a lazy, sunny Saturday and I have the house to myself, but I am feeling plain lazy. It feels good. I spent my morning reading blogs. There’s a lot of awesome ones-check out the side bar, bottom right, for a selection of great blogs I like to follow. Recently, someone asked what I do with my time…I seem to get stuff done, and by all outward appearances, have the whole adult-thing on lock down. I smiled and nodded, wanting to say that I wake up, brew the perfect espresso and go for a morning jog. But instead, I ventured into a discussion of how I actually roll:

  • wake up at 7, or…ok, 11,  in the make up I wore last night, in over sized mens pajamas, missing a sock. 
  • try to dig myself out of the mound of blankets that I have effectively wrapped myself around in, so I look like a giant Raina burrito (or as I call it, a Rainarito).
  • try to find a hair band, or a clippy, to wrangle the beast that is my hair. In real life, I have HUGE hair. Seriously, this thing has a life of it’s own, and requires a small army of hair products and a supporting team to keep it strapped down. Its like the Predator of hair.
  • Realize 30 mins later I have been wondering around the house with one sock on, but do nothing to either take one off, or search out the missing one.
  • Open the fridge to try and decide what to eat for breakfast and whether I can justify pickles as a breakfast. 
  • Decide shortly that coffee will work for now, and microwave a cup of what was left from last night.
  • Feed the animals, let the dog out on her own, and start up my computer, only to realize the dog is waiting at the door, and I am still missing a sock.
The morning usually goes on like this until I realize I need to eat real food (not pickles, cured meat, or coffee). Luckily, food makes me a little more human (and approachable), and I go about the day as a full fledged adult.

Bottom line: Breakfast is about as far as I got with that discussion before I noticed a look of concern on said friends face, so i quickly shifted the topic. 

Was I always this way?

God no!

I used to think that I had to be the perfect woman. I used to keep a near-perfect house, work full time, go to school full time and come home and put an amazing meal on the table. I paid all of my bills on time, and had cats that wore sweaters. Do you know how hard that crap is to keep up? Bah. On the outside it all looked fabulous, but on the inside I was beat and miserable. 7 years ago when I finally moved to Seattle, I stopped doing all of that. At first I felt guilty and then ashamed. GASP! What will people think!? And then I started going out more and actually living a good life instead of always wanting things to be perfect, and the more I did that, the happier I became. I know I won’t ever have a perfect house. There’s too much animal fur and crafts for that to happen, but I am ok with that. It’s nice knowing that I have my routines, as silly as they may be (or frightful for anyone who has ever seen me fetch the mail with hair flying madly about). And good on those women who can wake up, unhungover every Saturday, ready to take on the world… If that is you? Awesome!  If it’s not? Its ok too. No pressure to be that way. 

I still have my OCD tendencies. I hate germs and messes, but I am not going to freak out if things are a mess. So instead of worrying about whether my silver is polished, and my sheets are pressed; I will have this couch on lock down, preparing for a night of fun, be it crafting, hitting up a local brewery or being plain old awesome with friends…still missing a sock. 🙂
Here’s to well-rested weekends, and being ok with a weekend of big hair, missing socks, and pickle-based breakfasts. Oh, and if you have mastery of keeping hair in check and would like to be part of the support staff? Please leave a comment 😉


Got your goat!

I can’t believe it is only Tuesday. TUESDAY PEOPLE!!!  This may be one of the longest weeks ever. It may also be that I am coming off of being sick,and not working a full work week and that I had a great weekend. Meh, either way, Friday sure could hurry up and visit. That would not break my heart.

Speaking of the weekend-it was lovely!
Friday brought around a decision to get a goat. Of course, the decision was spurred on by two things: Beer in an unspecified amount, and this picture from Twisted Vines Farm:

Seriously. How can you not see that face and THAT SCARF and not want him or her?!  Sigh. I convinced my loving and ever so slightly beery partner that i wanted this, nay, NEEDED this goat (or any goat). He reluctantly agreed. Its not 4 full days later, and I still think this little guy may be the coolest thing ever. For the love of Pete, he has a smirk! He’s a sarcastic goat with a scarf. Its like he was made for me. Also, he looks very soft…not like cows, which (and no offense to cow lovers) are not soft. At all. It broke my heart to find out cows weren’t soft and this was maybe 10 years ago. I am still pretty pissed about that. 😉

But I digress. I did not get said goat. As much as I would love a fuzzy critter crapping in my back yard, I do have neighbors, and a job. I did have some very salient points though, had my drunken decision resulted in goat-buying. For instance, I would tell my neighbors:

  • He IS wearing a scarf. He is clearly a civilized goat, not like that sneaky goat behind him!
  • He could be a she (I didn’t check into it that much), if that were the case, there could be milk.
  • If there was milk, then there could be cheese!
  • I could make yarn (or is that just sheep? Hmm…it is pretty apparent that I didn’t plan this out)
  • If its a boy goat, then, he would be fierce and goat-manly and defend things. He could be a security goat.
  • He would eat weeds – this may be the only well thought out and truthful item on here.
This list really could go on and on, but I don’t know that the above holds many sell-worthy points, other than I really want a goat and will  make up stories about him/her to get to keep it.  So, my thought on it is this: Plan to get a farm. Its been a goal, but I think my desire to have Chewy (yea, the goat has a name, a very fitting one thank you very much!) proves that I should start mapping that out!
So…back to the weekend! 
Saturday was spent crafting and resting up after a long night of goat-plotting. I went to a scrapbooking party with Sarah and Krissie (check her blog out, BTW- http://strictlystampin.wordpress.com/).   Since I was way up north, I decided to hit up Smashing Rubbish vintage goods (http://www.smashingrubbish.blogspot.com), for this-a giant palmistry hand!  I think it goes well with my weird painting and antique typewriter, no?
I saw it on their site and when I found out it was only $18, I had to have it :).  What, you ask, does one do with a giant palmistry hand? Ummm. Well, I could see if a goat was in my future. See? I can find a reason for anything. 
Other highlights of the weekend: In no particular order, or that I should be proud of:
  • I may have subsisted on cured meat all weekend. Between the landjager, fish jerky and corned beef, It’s no surprise I didn’t feel well on Sunday.
  • I took this as a sign (possibly from the palmistry hand) that I should rest all day Sunday.
  • I got through the backlog of craft magazines that have been sitting on my bedside table
  • I discovered the show, “Freaks and Geeks”. 
So, what’s on tap for this week? Loretta’s tonight, to meet new neighbors and have a pint; wine tasting in downtown on Wednesday; some over time at work on Thursday, and Baron-my beacon of happiness on Friday. Between these adventures, I’ll also be finishing the binding on the quilt, and starting a embroidery project. 
All in all, I’ll call this weekend and the upcoming week a win, goat or no goat. 
PS-Note: there are no good goat quotes…So insert witty goat based thought here. 🙂

Pants-big girl and otherwise

Currently, the title of this post is Pants-big girl and otherwise. I’ll probably change it by the time I finish jotting my thoughts down. It seems fitting (pun only slightly intended), that I use that title, and here’s why:
Pants, in the literal sense: I have been sick the past few days, and have been living in pajamas. Seriously. I haven’t left the house since late Sunday and have been working from home. I have big hair, a cough, and it ain’t pretty. Be glad you’re not here to witness it!
But it also means Big girl pants. There’s been change happening, which has required big girl pants to be worn! After 5 (quite) long months, my mom moved into her own place. I am really proud of her for venturing out and getting her own place, but am so, so glad to have my craft room back.

Speaking of….I’ve almost finished my first quilt. Its not the one I have been working on for eons, but a pretty blue one. After I finish this post, I’ll be putting the binding on. I am so excited to see this project done 🙂

No big news on my end, just a quick germy update 🙂

Hope all of you are doing well! And hey, look at that, the title stayed!