Friday, January 28

Does. Not. Compute.

This is what we had for dinner tonight...


As in: I cooked it once, we ate it, and I cooked the same thing all over again. We literally don't have enough pans, nor room on our stove, to feed the two of us. Thank goodness Jason is the world's most prolific dishwasher.

But where I'm going with this is: what happens when the Matthews-ers "multiply?"
(Man, I'm bad with the puns this week. Sorry.)

Seriously. How is this going to work? The kiddos are inevitably going to inherit these appetites. Not to mention, this is NOTHING compared to high school...*

How in the blistering blazes are we supposed to feed three or four of these calorie-burning weirdos?? (Ourselves included, I'm not that insane.)

Bacon? Donuts? Milkshakes? Deep-fried pizza?
Or maybe by then, our metabolisms will have plummeted and I'll be kicking myself in the arse for writing this.

But just for now, with the two of us-- any tips on how to make more food all at once?

*(Oh, high school. The good ol' days of stuffing half an extra-large pizza in my face before I even got home from Pizza Hut. 
Also the days of visiting Jason's house after track practice, unannounced, and greeting his mom standing over the stove cooking dinner... the poor woman's eyes would widen like a deer in headlights as I walked through the door, and she'd automatically rip open a second bag of pasta to dump into the pot.) (THANK. YOU. for putting up with me, SandiMama!)

Wednesday, January 26

This is getting bad

Last weekend my friend Stacy & I got together for a painting date (check out her super creative artwork here.) Lucky me, not only does she have a big adorable goof of a dog whom I followed around the whole time, but she also has four CHICKENS!

Meet Dogfood, Captain Morgan, Nugget, and Princess Parmesan:

Stacy's photos of her ladies : )

We just sat and watched them for about ten minutes-- or as she calls it, Chicken TV. Totally transfixing.

Apparently they really like hanging out around people, so she moved her work desk next to the big glass doors by the deck. She said they just sit outside the door and stare at her the whole time. Funniest mental image of the week, seriously. And sure enough, there's an artfully splattered Poop Zone a foot away from the door.

So now not only do I want dogs, cats, rats, rabbits, and a squirrel or two, but chickens are the latest coveted creature. I'm planning a full-"fledged" circus here.

(Bahahahhaa I "crack" myself up.)
(Okay, stopping. Sorry.)

Later that night at home, I excitedly told Jason about how "chickens like to stare at people!!!" Apparently this wasn't as hilarious to him as it was to me, so I just kind of trailed off and cut to the chase:

"Would you want chickens one day? Pleeease?"
"...Would we eat them?"
"What if they died?"
"NO! That's... that's just awkward."
"...What if they died around Thanksgiving?"

Monday, January 24

I've got The Fever

I've got it bad. Just not for human babies.

But now I understand what baby fever feels like... because I've got FURBABY FEVER.   Every time I see a dog, I muffle myself from asking the stranger on the other end of the leash if they need a dogsitter. I slow my speed creepishly as I drive past the pound, telling myself it will only make things worse to "just go in and look." I'm even ready to raise some wild rat babies again... but that's a whole different blog post.

I'm starting to have weird dreams, too:
(Totally ridiculous, right? I mean, there's NO WAY my boobs will ever be that big.)

And then don't even get me started on Jason's obsession with cats. One night I was hanging out with a friend and her new baby kitten, and I called Jason to make him jealous. It started out as a normal conversation, and then I decided to drop the bomb:

"So guess what I'm doing right now, Jay? I get to play with Sara's brand-new little KITTEN!!" (Gosh, I can be really mean sometimes.)

"WhhHHAT??" he gasps, after the stunned silence required to wrap his mind around such a miracle.

"Yup! She's only a couple weeks old, and she's stripey with big blue eyes, and she's still got that really big, round, cute kitten belly."

"Awww..." (His voice is reduced to barely a whisper at the thought of this little furball.) And then he says, tenderly, his voice almost cracking with sincerity,
"Send her ALL my love."

To this day that is the funniest thing I have ever heard Jason say. I know, I'm lucky to have snagged such a sweet and caring guy-- but I have serious concerns that once we get a cat, it will get more cuddle-time than me. The man LOVES CATS.

For now, though, we can't have any pets in our apartment. We can only have stupid "aquarium fish," and to me, those might as well be houseplants. (So keep them away, because I quickly & efficiently kill everything in that category within a month. Our apartment is a sad collection of brown leaves.)

I can't wait until we can buy our very own, VERY fur-and-claw-and-bark-and-chew-and-poop-stain-friendly house. Because at this rate, I'll start hoarding mice in our bathtub within the month. And then they'll multiply. And then we'll get evicted, and we'll live under a bridge with 28 mice on leashes. And I need to STOP with this little story because I'm getting all warm-and-fuzzy-excited over the idea of 28 mice on leashes.

Friday, January 21

Well, color me amazed.

A tiny piece of heaven snuck out last night.
Threw quite the little party.

{You know the drill-- click to zoom.}

People were literally pulling their cars over to the side of the road to just sit and look at it. A man saw me taking pictures, and handed me his business card so I could email them to him.

I couldn't decide whether I should keep taking pictures, or just plop down in the muddy grass and take it all in. So I did a little bit of both.

     Dear Heaven,


        Eugene, OR

Wednesday, January 19

It's time to install a video camera in our bedroom

Chill out, pervs. Not like that.

But some majorly weird stuff happens in our sleep.

Back when we had pet rats, one of them figured out how to open the cage door. Ignorant of her conniving little ways, I kept blaming myself for leaving the door unlatched. (After all, to open it she'd have to hang upside down, push the just the right spot with her nose, and slide open the door.) We finally realized what was up after one night when we both double-checked the cage before going to bed. She found her way into our bedroom, jumped on the bed, and curled up between us to sleep. Awww. (Or-- "shudder," for the average, non-rodent-rearing person.)
The culprit herself

This next strange happening wasn't really in our bedroom, but when we stayed in his grandma's living room. We awoke the next morning to notice that the foam pad we'd BOTH BEEN SLEEPING ON was haphazardly rolled up on the couch, tied in a loose knot with a belt. Neither of us had any idea how it got there. I always knew I married a neat freak, but... wow.

Sometimes it will happen in the morning:

A:  Jason, it's 8AM. Do you want me to wake you up?
J:   grunt.
A:  Okay, what time to you want to get up then?
J:   Tents and horses.
A:  You just said tents and horses.
J (indignantly, but eyes still closed): I know.

A (trying reeeally hard not to laugh): What time to you want me to wake you up?
J (eyes still closed, but sounding seriously irritated): Tents and horses!!!
A:   Dude. That's not a time.
J (sighing, eyes still closed): Oh, yeah. Ten degrees. I meant to say 'ten degrees.'
A (having some serious issues holding in my laughter): What?!
J (really angrily): It makes sense. And I'm right.
A: (completely loses it, which finally wakes him up with a very confused look on his face.)

Here's the latest and final straw that made me sit down and write this post:

Last night, I was dreaming that I was brushing my teeth. How responsible, right? As I was about to finish brushing in my dream and lean over the sink, I slowly started to wake up. I gained just enough vague consciousness to notice I was actually doing that funny sucking thing that gathers a wad of spit at the front of your mouth. Suddenly, with a life of its own, my head pulled up off my pillow and HAWKED THE SPIT ONTO MY CHEST.


{second photo from here.}

Monday, January 17

The time is always ripe to do right.

I was first assigned to read "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" in my sophomore year of high school, 40 years after Martin Luther King Jr. scribbled it down on the margins of a spare newspaper in his jail cell.

I rolled my eyes and sighed an angsty, teenaged sigh when I clicked "print' and 13 dense pages spit out-- but minutes later, I was eating up every word through tear-blurred eyes. His courageous passion is incredibly contagious:
Though I was initially disappointed at being categorized as an extremist, as I continued to think about the matter I gradually gained a measure of satisfaction from the label.

Was not Jesus an extremist for love: 'Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.'

...Was not Martin Luther an extremist: 'Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God.'

And John Bunyan: 'I will stay in jail to the end of my days before I make a butchery of my conscience.'

And Abraham Lincoln: 'This nation cannot survive half slave and half free.'

And Thomas Jefferson: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal...'

So the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremists for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice?

...Human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability; it comes through the tireless efforts of men willing to be coworkers with God, and without this hard work, time itself becomes an ally of the forces of social stagnation. We must use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right.

We can all think of ways to implement these words into our life; I won't flatter myself by following King's words with an opinionated priority list of today's global injustices. If we all exhibit an ounce of this man's bravery, by listening to our conscience instead of the social and legal status quo, there is no way the world won't become a more just and peaceful place.

Read the whole letter at
(Photo from here.)

Friday, January 14

This is what we've done the last four months

Jan. 2: Drag our weary butts through the door, unpack for the fourth time in four months, and gaze upon what this packing-unpacking, packing-unpacking, packing-unpacking, packing-unpacking routine has done to our apartment.
I mean, we're lucky to have traveled so much, and we're happy to finally get back to our little love nest, but this...
This doesn't even show the SEVEN loads of laundry.
 and this?!
The stuff we moved out of the way for our sub-leaser... but how did it all fit in our apartment in the first place?!

Somebody get me a shovel!! Because now I know what we'll be doing for the NEXT four months.

P.S. (There's always a P.S., isn't there?) Here's my favorite picture from our Florida trip-- Jason is just NAILING that Jack Sparrow impression. Here's another good one. Okay, I'm just going to go make a facebook album.

....Instead of cleaning.

Saturday, January 8

All I want for Christmas are some REALLY SORE glutes

As nerdy as we may otherwise seem, Jason & I are helplessly addicted to our local Crossfit gym (there are 300 in the US). We tried it out last year, right before Sweden, and it is OFF THE HOOK amounts of fun. Guess who got themselves full-time memberships for Christmas? ; ) ; )
Mr. Matthews(er) amongst fellow curly-haired Crossfitters

It's like a PE class for big kids. (Some of you have probably stopped reading right there. The rest of you, who are Jocks-for-Life like us, are probably ready to sign on the dotted line, eh?) You do stuff like pullups, burpees (gawd, remember those?!), box-jumps, and slinging around kettlebells.

My muscles have been so insanely sore that I sound like a catastrophically constipated old man whenever I stand up (or sit down, or bend over, or turn my steering wheel...) This is coming from a chick who used to weight train with her body-builder mom back in high school. I'm not complaining, though; I'm such a jock that I like being sore.

Another perk to Crossfit, as illustrated by a recent conversation:

Crossfit Coach:   Hey, look who's back from Sweden!! Did you guys work out much
                             while you were gone?
Jason:                  Yeah, a little.
Myself:                 Nope. I love working out, but I need someone to yell in my face to get me to do it.
                             ( I point to the coach.)
Jason:                  Yeah, didn't think it would go over too well if I tried that.
Coach:                 (...awkwardly smiles, like this is something he doesn't really want to get in the 
                              middle of...)

Still, we totally imagined him going home that day and writing up a new ad pitch:

Eugene Crossfit: pay a professional to yell at your spouse!

[Photo from]
P.S. Stop giving me the suspicious side-eye. They're not giving me any free sweat sessions to write this.
P.P.S. With that said, every Saturday 10AM Eugene class is free to everyone!! Come so we can laugh at each other : )

    Thursday, January 6

    Signed, Sealed, Delivered

    Repeat to self:

    ...this is not a craft blog, this is not a craft blog...

    aw, hell. Sure it is. It just also happens to be a travel blog and cooking blog and photography blog and a blargy-blog (I'll let you decide the appropriate link for that one).

    The reason that everybody should come live in Eugene is that the University bookstore sells paper. Glooorious paper.

    Paper that should, theoretically, make homemade Christmas cards a cinch... unless you have a brain hellbent on over-complicating projects until you end up spending many a late night tearing your hair out over them crafting them with loving care. (It really was a bit of both-- story of my life.)

    [click on any of the pictures to zooOOm]

    Most of the birdies said this...
    Until I realized that I had these stickers, and decided that the birdies had definitely been bug-eyed partridges all along.
    'I freaking LOVE PEARS'
    Half the time I was chuckling to myself over these crazy birds.

    I found the perfect little elvish font...
    And ALLLMOST forgot to blur out the addresses before posting. Eek.

    ....And drew a little squirrel using its tail as a blanket. Looks like Santa visited, too!
    Cute overload.

    So: if you didn't get one this year, I either have the wrong address for you, or no address at all. If you want one next year, email me at so we can exchange addresses!

    Tuesday, January 4

    Bring it on, 2011.

    There's something about making goals public that gives them that extra oomph, wouldn't you say?

    My resolutions are pretty simple this year:

    Waste less food. Don't judge, you do it too. Although I really will miss the array of "science experiments" sprouting in our refrigerator. Maybe I'll keep just a few "cultures"... I'll put them out on the back patio. Inside squirrel-proof cages.

    Quadruple my efforts to get EMPLOYED! Man, do I miss doing architecture. It just massages my brain where the other stuff can't quite reach. (I hope you're making "squish-squish" sound effects.)

    Employment will also yield many happy side-effects, such as being able to afford a house. Which will lead to more desired results such as being allowed to paint the walls cobalt blue and orange and poppy red and dusty lavender and fresh grass-green and bright white (no more of this "barely beige" sh*t, c'mon people... commit to either white or beige.) Anyhoo, yes-- I'm getting me-self a job ASAP.

    Resolution number three: Consciously analyze whether I'm following the Golden Rule every single day. (I can't decide if this is a simple resolution, or an incredibly complicated one that will leave me awake at night wondering how often I should give people high-fives.*) But seriously, at the root of this resolution I will hopefully end up being more complimentary, straightforward, and supportive.

    What's your top resolution this year? Do you have any tips for helping make mine happen?

    And happy, happy 2011!!!!

    *Because I LOOOOVE getting high-fives. But perhaps not everyone likes getting them as often as I do. So do I follow the Golden Rule by giving other people as many high-fives as I would want? Or do I follow the Golden Rule by trying to give everyone as many high-fives as would satisfy their own unique hand-slapping needs?

    **The pictures don't have anything to do with New Year's resolutions. What they do have to do with is that on New Year's Eve I discovered that my shirt and the Christmas tree got along very prettily, and that I spent five minutes standing in front of the tree taking blurry pictures of my sequin-scaled stomach.