Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Lights Are On But...

It's tragic being a girl working in an office full of techy guys. All day long Pickle Cookie is subjected to guy sights, like a workbench strewn with computer parts,pieces, screws and tiny tools; guy sounds, like you might hear at a petting zoo if it were a zoo populated by virtual livestock; and guy smells, like six day old Chinese food simmering in a funk of screen cleaner and compressed air.

Pickle Cookie has never been a girly-girl and has no desire to have coordinating pink pleather desk accessories. She is not expected to make the coffee unless she is the one drinking it. But still, a change of venue is appreciated.

While the boys are out of the office making computer owners happy, Pickle Cookie will be working at the call center {formerly known as "the dining room"}. The call center has climate control, a view of the back yard, and smells like cookies, because there are cookies in the oven right now.

Also? The call center is not lonely, which the office often is when the boys are out doing their jobs. Today the four-footed supervisors will keep Pickle Cookie company.

Ahhh. Pickle Cookie appreciates a work environment that includes baked goods and puppies!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Don't Eat That!

Sometime over the weekend Pickle Cookie lost her travel drug container. It came from the camping section at WallyWorld and was designed to hold four or five fishing flies. The whole sheebang is about the size of a credit card and the thickness of a kitchen sponge. Discretely small but not too small. And also? Neon pink. Pickle Cookie knows how to rock the geriatric pharmaceutical toting accessory!

The tiny compartments were just perfect to pack Pickle Cookie's daily meds in. By "daily meds" Pickle Cookie means the prescription Beta blocker she takes for palpitations and the seven or eight OTC supplements and analgesics she carries around "just in case".

Baby strength aspirin, just in case Mr. PC cooks real scrambled eggs - not the mucilaginous stuff from the pour carton - with real bacon for breakfast, the artery-clogging potential of which cause Pickle Cookie to medicate in advance. Mmm, orangey!

Ibuprofin for those pesky monthly swollen ankles and fingers; acetaminophin for the monthly hormone headache that makes Pickle Cookie want to cut her head off and bury it in a wooly blanket under the front porch; tiny, round pellets that look like a gift from the sea, containing a probiotic supplement in case of Owie Belly; MVM supplement for when Pickle Cookie is feeling a certain kind of weak and shakey that can only be attributed to iron deficiency anemia or possibly a nervous condition induced by TooManyDirtyDishesInTheSink-itis; diphenhydramine for it's antihistamine and antiemetic properties, although just a fraction of a tablet will make Pickle Cookie face plant on her keyboard and wake up two hours later with a snail trail of dried drool on her chin;
and the Happy Pill that helps Pickle Cookie ignore her palpitaions and get some sleep, which must not be named lest Pickle Cookie's insurance company find out and raise her premium to $19437545387063.91. Her premium now is only $19437545387062.91.

The little container can be easily replaced. Pickle Cookie's biggest fear? Some stoner will find her medicine stash and attempt to get high. Note to druggies: Pickle Cookie hates fun and does not take anything that makes her high. In fact, Pickle Cookie's Beta blocker could make you dead. This has been a public service announcement. Please enjoy your regularly scheduled day!

Love you tons!

Pickle Cookie

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Take A Moment

October 1st marks the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness month. Take a moment and be well informed about the facts. What do you need to know? Click here for more information about detection, treatment, and donation. To read an interesting and informative article on diet, lifestyle, and breast cancer from FoodConsumer, click here and here.

Detecting symptoms early saves lives. I encourage all of you to see a health care professional immediately if you notice something new or different. {What is the expression? Bad news is like fish, it doesn't get better with time.}

With Fall weather starting to bring in the cooler temperatures, Pickle Cookie is feeling frisky and happy. Pickle Cookie loves to throw on her sweatshirt, round up the dogs, and go for walk, walk, walkies! Pretty leaves! Big, giant acorns! Decorating with pumpkins! Do I smell smoke? Fall is fun!

Pickle Cookie worries about the backyard birds that might be planning to stick around through the winter. Will they find enough to eat? Will their nests stay warm and dry enough inside their bird houses? Does the littlest house need a new roof? The rear fence is dotted with colorful and unusual bird houses made by Mr. PC (artistic direction by Pickle Cookie).

One house has a front wall shaped like a heart and painted bright red. Another has a super sized front porch to keep the bald little babies from falling out into the yard. All of the houses are a little quirky, much like Pickle Cookie herself, and each bird house has a history of occupation that Pickle Cookie will be glad to bore you with given the opportunity. Pickle Cookie celebrates her diverse bird families and their hodge-podge bird village.

The bird house that started it all was a gift from Pickle Cookie's Auntie. The house itself is unremarkable. But the paint job? This bird house is painted with a sunny splash of yellow flower on the front wall, indicating that only happy birds live inside. Auntie decorated several of these bird houses and gave them one year as Christmas gifts.

This house for happy birds reminds Pickle Cookie so much of her Auntie that she displays it indoors in the guest room, where it has pride of place on top of the bookcase, sending out a warm yellow welcome to all who may enter.

The guest room serves as a catch-all for gift wrap, overflow reading materials - the mystery novels that Pickle Cookie loves - out of print garden magazines, and several craft projects that were started and then abandoned for now. In short, it can look a mess in there but opening the door onto that little yellow bird house is as warm and as welcoming as a hug from Pickle Cookie's Auntie.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I’m Worried About That In Advance

Pickle Cookie is sitting here at work and she's got some worries.

Some things Pickle Cookie is currently worried about include, but are not limited to:

1. New onset of severe stomach pain when she takes her usual MVM supplement. Clearly a symptom of colon cancer. OMG! Or an ulcer. Can Pickle Cookie die from an ulcer? Will her internist insist on sending her for a diagnostic PickleCookieoscopy? PC (Pickle Cookie) says, “Nothing is going ‘In” the ‘Out’ hole”.

2. Termites. Pickle Cookie saw something crawly under the rosebush edging, near the washing machine run-off valve, under the kitchen window. The ground there looks all EWWW! What if…?

3. Pickle Cookie's generic anti-palpitation medicine, metoprolol tartrate, came from a different manufacturer this month. What if it doesn’t work as well? And she need a higher dose? For palpitations??But the next size up is a great big tablet, and Pickle Cookie has swallow issues. If Pickle Cookie has to swallow that big horse tablet she will assuredly choke and die! And also? The new pill is shockingly pink. Great! Food color ADHD to boot.

4. Finances.

5. Hair loss.

6. Tomatoes.

Some future things that Pickle Cookie likes to worry about in advance:

1. Endodontist, Part One Million, tomorrow. Tooth #15 has been treated three times, by two different specialists, and is still plenty hurty at the gum line. And maybe a little hurty with chewing pressure too. Pickle Cookie hasn’t actually chewed there on purpose because…this tooth cost 184639 gigabillionty dollars to treat from filling to crown to re-re-do dah root canal(s). This tooth used up Pickle Cookie's entire dental benefit for the year and is still hurty.

President Obama, Hello? Hello? Is there any impending dental reform that can help Pickle Cookie before she is toofless?

Pickle Cookie received an email from the endodontist warning her that pain from heat or cold means a completely different tooth somewhere in the area also needs treatment. Pickle Cookie is, of course, worried in advance about that.

2. Client business function this weekend. The client is snooty-tooty but the function is big, so the Pickle Cookies probably won’t have to talk. But what if the snoots engage them in social discourse?{Run awaaaaay!} Dahling, it’s mahvelous to see you, mwha! Mwha! Blech. And also? Pickle Cookie may not be able to lose twenty pounds and become a natural blonde by Friday.(Mr.Pickle Cookie is constantly fabulous. All the women want to be seen with him and all the men want to BE him).

3. The inevitable demise of my beloved puppy dogs, who will turn eight in October. The natural lifespan for that breed is about fourteen. Waaah! I am sad in advance, worrying about the downhill slide into the last days with my precious snowflakes!

My father was Pickle Cookie pensive so I get that I inherited my lean that way, plus OCD ish all on my own. Sometimes I amuse myself by following the worry trail to its most extreme and unlikely end…which requires administration of additional anti-palpitation medication, stat, lest I decompensate and create a black hole of suck in the Universe.

And now back to my regularly scheduled work day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Change Is Good, Right?

So, I’m coming up on a birthday that ends in a zero. It’s the birthday that normally features black balloons. Soon I’ll be at the medical supply store picking up my walker and hearing aid. Kidding! I did start using one of those rubber thingies to open jars with but other than that, I’m in pretty good shape.

Anyway, with this birthday hanging over my head, I’ve decided to try something new once a month. That may not sound like a lot to you but if you’ve met me? I have some OCD issues. I don’t like change. I really, really don’t like new things. I like everything to be ordered and structured and the same. Forever and ever, Amen.

I read this article about brain age, how you can stay mentally young by doing new things and changing routines. Based on their quiz I am 2,273 years old. Impressive! I don’t want to spend the next few decades with my name sewn in my clothes, so I figured I’d try some things out. Some of the suggestions were goofy, like brushing your teeth left-handed for a month. Um, I’m also not so co-ordinated. I’m pretty sure if I tried that I would be brushing my hair with toothpaste and flossing my earlobes. Good times!

The first month I changed my morning beverage from hot water to green tea. Yes, hot water. With lemon. It’s motivational. Shut up! I would have my hot lemon water before my morning yoga so that I would have a peaceful start to my day. Anyway…there was a lot of trying out of the teas because tea is YUCK. Most teas taste like lawn clippings to me. (Sorry, tea people.) I finally found Tazo Zen tea, which is green tea with lemongrass. I LOVE lemongrass! We had some amazing Thai food last weekend and it was seasoned with lemongrass. So yummy! Here is a link: (for the tea). Wouldn't you like to try some? In the interest of full disclosure, I am not affiliated with Tazo in any way, I just enjoy their tea.

The tea thing went pretty well so the next change was: no morning yoga. Bye bye, Virabhadrasana Asana, Hello dog walking. My little bosses are very happy with this arrangement. They are able to pee on every blade of grass in a two mile radius, all before the sun comes up. I love watching the lights come on in the houses as people wake up. I also love peeping in the windows and checking out other people’s houses. I make up a whole story in my head about their lives. And I critique, because I love. They put the sofa in front of the fireplace, GAH! And, seriously, some blinds or shades are needed, people. If I ever spy you nekkid at the breakfast table we're gonna all need the paramedics. Overall, the walking thing is working pretty well and honestly? The morning yoga would sometimes make me fall asleep in a posture and wake up all pretzeley. Not missing that so much.

The next change has taken me almost two months. As soon as I get home from work (and after the dogs pee on everything again) (and after sweatpants) I like to sit on the couch and read. And I’m pretty happy just sitting there, reading, until someone jumps in my lap, yapping for dinner. I also fix something for the dogs.

But, no more! The new plan is to come home and exercise until the yapping for dinner starts. Then I get to read as a reward. The exercise is going well. I can squat 220. That’s not bad for an old lady, eh? The problem later is that I fall asleep while I’m reading. I wake up on the couch with my face in a book and smooshy eyeglasses. I’m 2,273 years old, right? So sometimes I'm reading and then exercising at pitch dark o’clock. I’m trying to get this month under control.

I can’t wait to see what I do next month. Maybe alphabetize my pantry? Stay tuned for the excitement.

This came to me in a chain email:

Five simple rules to be happy:

1. Free your heart from hatred.

2. Free your mind from worries.

3. Live simply.

4. Give more.

5. Expect less.

Have a nice day, unless you already have other plans.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


(Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)


Let’s not forget.


Frosting mounded atop a cupcake

Inviting as a first kiss.

Some people are lickers

Dainty as butterflies lapping up nectar.

But I tumble

Intoxicated with desire for you

Yearning for you to fill me up.

I nibble the slightly crunchy outer ridge of icing

And smooth my lips over the moist creamy

Cupcake innards

With the intensity of a lover.

I am heady with the scent of you!


Exotic vanilla bean

And the undertow of dangerous dark chocolate.

For a moment

Time stands still.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Pickle Cookie Neighborhood

The Pickle Cookie house sits in the middle of a quiet block in the middle of a quiet subdivision. It’s an older subdivision – houses erected in the late 1960’s to early 1970’s – so the lots are large, full-sized lots. None of that zero lot line business for us. The Pickle Cookie neighbors value their space! And their privacy.

Hey you skateboard kids:

Get Off My Lawn!
{And Get Off My Neighbors’ Lawn Too}

We know our neighbors’ dogs by name and their cats by sight. We will say something to you when your dog poops on our lawn and you don’t pick it up.
We know what our neighbors drive, we know what time our neighbors go to work, and we know what our neighbors are cooking on the grill tonight for dinner.

Pssst...We know who was using their weed whacker at seven thirty on a Saturday morning.

We also know which retired couple has nothing but Coca-Cola and a half gallon of milk in the refrigerator, and we will stop by around dinner time with “accidental leftovers” of roast chicken and vegetables and fresh-baked peach cobbler.

We have a key to our neighbors’ house in case of emergency and they have the key to ours. This was after I accidentally locked myself out after dark and had to break the bathroom window to get in; the mosquitoes almost drained my last pint of blood! And this was before the neighbors told us about the time their roof caught fire and the other neighbor let himself in, with his key, to put the fire out.

Most of the time we forget to lock the front door.

Sometimes we go to bed with the garage door standing wide open. Our neighbor calls us on the cell phone to let us know before “those kids” can get a look and plot some mischief.

We borrowed the 10-foot ladder from our neighbors last Fall; it’s still in our garage. We use it to trim up their trees for them. We have exchanged phone numbers, pager numbers and e-mail addresses “just in case”. We have the mailing address of their son in New York who “works in the theater”. We’ve lived here for fifteen years and we’ve never met him. That makes us sad.

When we go on vacation our neighbors pick up our mail for us. They pack our mail neatly into a shopping bag with a handle. We toss their mail willy nilly into any old bag we can find in the house. Our neighborhood patrolman makes extra trips through our alley when we’re away because we told him we’ll be gone. He also knows when to expect us to return.

When our neighbor threw his back out mowing the lawn we drove him to the emergency room. When it’s stormy and the power goes out we all phone each other to make certain that everyone is o.k.

Isn’t your neighborhood like this too?

And if not, why not?

Do you know the people living on your street? What about the people who live next door?

What would happen if you took a moment to introduce yourself?

What if everybody did?