Bramble Patch: January 2014

  A list of happy distractions from over the last month.

My new favorite app: SkyMotion. Tells me the snowpocalypse will hit my block in… “7 minutes.” Then tells me it will clear in… “never.”

Also, this cat just discovered snow for the first time. Heart = Melted. 

Here is an envelope idea for anyone sending valentines.

Don’t read this if you want to keep your mascara on.

A friend and I were discussing how odd it is that we hardly know any kids with daily chore duties. Now I read this list and think my parents were soft on me too.

Great writing tips for bloggers.

Fifty quinoa recipes for lazy people.

Helen Mirren twerking at Harvard.  

There was a bearded, fire-worshiping viking party in Scotland and I was not invited. The Hell?

Cheap and pretty: Copper storage baskets. This elephant necklace. This heart print blouse. And oh look, here is another.

Not so cheap but very pretty: wearable signatures.

A photo of me and my first mannequin

I hate the Superbowl but I’ll watch it because it’s an all-American excuse to lay down the baby carrots and dip tasty bidness in awesome bidness. My contribution to the party: crock pot chocolate lava cake.What are you making?

PS for Valentine Swappers: Watch your inbox. Google is being a nerd-hole and making me stagger my email blasts, so if you haven’t seen yours already, hold out until tomorrow. It’s coming, I promise!


  1. says

    Thank you!
    I bought the mad writing book for creative blogging. So hopefully I can improve my blog

  2. Deb says

    I’m with you on that fire-worshipping Viking blow out in Scotlan. I don’t care if the Vikings are only true in costume only; most likely they’re all Scotsmen, and that is never a bad thing.

    Is that picture outside your house? What a beautiful shot!

    • says

      No, not my block but it’s not far. Almost all Chicago looks like this these days…

    • says


      I don’t maintain a bucket list, but if I did, yes, I would be there, even though my ancestors lived just NE of Edinburgh and probably arched one eyebrow when they heard about it. Up-Helly-A rivals Hogmanny for popularity probably because they burn things. Can you imagine the paperwork if the Illinois St. Andrew’s Society tried to recreate Up-Helly-A in Chicago?

  3. says

    that viking festival blew my mind! I showed my husband, he was like, oh it’s Scottish Renfair! whatever. Did you see ALL THOSE BEARDS????

  4. says

    Uh huh. It’s scratching my game of thrones spot. Let’s go!

  5. says

    Stop posting links, I MUST work on valentines and you keep distracting meeeeeeeeeee! Mooom!!! Peaches is bothering me!!!!!

  6. says

    Nerd Hole. I will use this phrase at least 6 times today.

  7. says

    That list of chores looks like my childhood as well as my children’s chore lists. My Kids were helping with the laundry at 2-7 and doing their own at 8. They did the dishes (oldest washed, youngest dried), made their own lunches, kept their rooms clean, and helped in the main areas. My daughter resents me for it because her friends never had to do anything, but I consider my job as a parent to raise contributing and responsible adults, not to let them spend 18 years being frivolous and stupid only to be expected to grow up because of a number.

  8. says

    …my almost 4 year old does just about everything on that 2-3 list except “carry firewood”…and that’s mostly cuz we don’t HAVE firewood for him to carry. …at this age it’s not so much a “you do these chores or else!” as a “please stay out of my hair while I try to shower” thing… he LOVES to help, so I’m always looking for appropriate chores I CAN let him do. …he’s apparently “ahead” in the laundry folding department as he already does socks…

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