Author Archives: ringmistressstitches

Grow a seed, change a law.

I am livid. This isn’t my normal “rant for five minutes” anger, this is full blown, make-an-activist-look-sane rage. I can’t even explain to you how absolutely, mind-blowingly angry I am at some recent information I found. I will probably rant for weeks about this.

As some of you may know, I decided to plant a vegetable garden. Spring is basically here, with maybe one more frost before the state warms to its usually balmy 90+ degrees, and I’ve already gotten my garden underway. Currently, I’ve already planted mint, bush beans, parsley, strawberries, tomatoes (being kept indoors), an apple tree sprout, and I’ve still got basil, cucumbers, lettuce and celery left waiting to be nestled in a dirt bed. Since I don’t have sufficient sunlight in my back yard, everything’s being grown in pots in the front yard. Mobile, compact, and easy.

Anyway, I had planned, if all goes well this growing season, to transform half of my front yard into a wondrous Eden of edible foliage. I wanted a dozen or so of each plant, resting comfortable in raised beds in full sunlight by May of 2014. According to the city, this can’t happen.

“Why not” you ask? “Vegetable gardens are lovely” you say? Of course they are. However, according to city ordinances in countless cities across the country, vegetable gardens just aren’t “suitable”, and since they aren’t “suitable”, this means the city can levy a fine of $500 a day against you until you rip up what you worked hard to put down.

$500 because we, the public, don’t want to pay out the nose for mass-produced, nearly-rotten food. They don’t care if you pay thousands of dollars a year for plush green grass. They don’t care if you want twenty-three rose bushes. They DO care if you’ve got half a dozen crops. This has got to stop.

If you want to help make a difference, help homeowners have the right to grow their own food, sign this and let your voice be heard.


Happy “Discount Candy” day!

Sorry again, dear readers, for the long interval between posting. The past couple of months have taken a toll on me. My parents are currently sick, I still can’t find a job, and the stressors just keep building. I’ve had four nervous breakdowns in two months, and, at this point, I think the come-and-stay depression is completely justified.

Despite all this, however, I’m still trying very hard to find my creative outlet. My garden is almost ready to start, I’ve been working on several crochet projects, building my recipe folder, and I recently started making odds and ends for a friend’s business. When that really gets going, I’ll post a shameless-promotion-blog with links and pictures, and all that nifty jazz.

Speaking of, if anyone wants to buy a gray and pearl white scarf, let me know. 

One of the things I’m working on, that I really hope works out, is a small webcomic. Or at least illustrations to go with my blogs. We recently got a scanner, and if I can get a decent photo-editing program working on this laptop, I’ll probably start adding some visual comedy to this aesthetically boring blog.

We’ll see how this all works out! 

Until next time, readers.


Winter not-so-down time

Hello, dear readers! I know I’ve been away again, and my posts have been slacking profusely. But I’m back! Yay!

This past fall, I made a decision that I’m hoping I’ll stick with. I’m very excited about it, and, since it’s inception, has grown to become a monstrous project.

I want to plant a vegetable garden in my back yard.

Now, for most people, this would be pretty simple. Decide on where to put it, plant the seeds/baby plants, and maintain. However, my life can never be that simple. My back yard is, for lack of a better term, trashed. We’ve got a nice dead branch collection along the back fence, massively overgrown weeds around the shed, and some various trees, including that pesky palm, have made themselves comfortable all the way around the back porch. Not to mention the fact that I don’t have the slightest idea where my septic tank is, and there’s a sturdy, though slightly decrepit picnic table smack dab in the middle of my yard.

So, since I have until mid-February before I have to start planting and taking care of itty bitty green things, I’ve decided that this winter, I’ll fix up the backyard and the back porch, and seriously take some time to rethink my life.

Let’s just take a quick little look-see at my to-do list before Valentine’s day.

First and foremost, I need to dispose of the dead tree limbs, which, I should note, didn’t even come from the tree in my yard. No, the neighbors behind me couldn’t be bothered to haul the branches out to the street before the city switched over to automated trash pick-up, so they just casually dumped them over the fence into out yard. Wasn’t that sweet of them?

Once those are out, I have to cut down/dig up/poison the volunteer trees and weeds cropping up all over the place. I swear, we started with two little palm trees, one in the front, and one in the back, and now, suddenly, we’re up to our noses in them. Their reign of annoyance is coming to a close, though. I’m sorry, Lorax, but these trees have got to go. I’ll also be trimming back a lot of the wanted trees that are blocking out my precious sunlight.

Next goes the “salvaged” trash piled up against the shed; screen doors, half-rotten sawhorses, planks of wood that were going to be used, but that just never managed to happen, and a bird cage that’s a quiet, though sharp reminder of the little feathered friend my brother and I had once upon a time. I might fix that up and make it a decorative plant hanger, or something.

Moving on to the picnic table. I’m actually not totally opposed to keeping it in the yard. While carefully inspecting the wholly disheartening space, I tested the table, and it’s still in semi-decent shape. I will have to scrub it down and sand it smooth, and invest in some carpenter’s putty and varnish, though. I’ll get it all spruced up, and probably leave it right where it is, since it’s directly between where I wanted to plant a couple of apple trees. Just to keep myself from turning my yard completely into a stereotypical housewife garden thing, I think I’ll paint it black. Maybe put some studs in it.

Or a giant devil face in the middle of the table.

No, I’ll probably just see if I can stain it really dark.

Kinda liking the studs, though.

Anyway, I also have to figure out the cheapest way to kill a large patch of grass/weeds without putting a load of chemicals into the soil sand. (Because this is Florida, and we don’t have soil.) I don’t want my garden choked out before I get a chance to test my gardening skills, and honestly, our lawn could use a resent anyway.

And by reset, I of course mean “kill everything and pretend I didn’t feel like a god.”

Sometime during all of this, I’ll figure out where the septic tank is, and rope that off, and then it’s on to the back porch!

That should be less of a time suck, as all I really have to do to prepare it is get rid of all of the junk that’s been sitting there for ten years and clean it up a bit. Granted, me being me, I’ll find a way to make this considerably more complicated than it has to be, such as making an attempt to turn it into a dual-purpose gardening/social area, and I’ll end up running myself ragged before the end of January.

I’m so excited.

Do you any of, my darling readers, have any tips or suggestions for my upcoming projects?

Have any of you had any experience with gardening, or restoring a neglected yard?

Leave me a comment and let me know!



Meteor Showers, Thanksgiving, and Christmas bells, oh my!

Well, I’ve been slacking again, I know.But I have an almost legitimate reason this time!

Granted, it was mostly due to not knowing what to blog about until around thanksgiving, and then Thanksgiving happened, and things got tense. Then I forgot I was supposed to blog. Then I remembered and I felt bad.

Anyway, coming up during the indeterminate hours between December 13th and the 14th, the Geminid meteor shower is supposed to dazzle us with hunks of space debris falling through our atmosphere at an alarmingly fast rate.

I’m excited. The last two meteor showers were very disappointing. Not because they didn’t wow me, but because I didn’t get to see them. For the first one, back in early October, I happened to get very sick on the night the space rocks were due to visit, and, instead of giggling and shrieking with delight like some overexcited five year old. I was laid up in bed with a 103 fever. 

But wait! November held the promise of another shower, and you can bet your sweet patooty I was making no plans to get deathly sick, or otherwise engaged for this one. So I stocked up on vitamin c, and prepared to spend most of the night looking up at the stars. But the sky had other plans and seemed to mock me with a completely cloudy sky. And when I say completely, I mean you couldn’t even see the moon glowing from behind the cloud cover. Needless to say, I was livid.

This time, the skies will be clear, I’ll be healthy, and I’ll spend most of the night wondering how I ended up crazy enough to feel like I have to watch every meteor shower ever. Everyone else seems to think “Well, you’ve seen one mass of space junk fall into the atmosphere, you’ve seen ’em all.” Wrong. It’s different space crap this time.

Don’t judge me.

Also, thanksgiving was recently, for all of my American readers. As an American, I was pretty much obligated to produce a magnificent feast of heart-clogging proportions. And I did. Turkey, Stuffing, vegetables, pies, and I only burned myself twice! Go me! We had a decent 22.5 lb turkey, which I brined for around 30 hours (give or take), stuffed, and shoved bacon under the skin. Next year, I’ll probably post a “recipe” when Thanksgiving time swings back around.

I managed to burn myself before I even put the turkey in the oven. This year I preheated the oven, half asleep, forgetting to take the top oven rack out. When I went to go pull it out, it had already had plenty of time to reach the proper temperature, and, me being so wonderfully graceful, let it knock against something else in the kitchen, which sent it right back against my unprotected arm. The long, pink burn scar is still with me, and has just recently started to itch. It’ll be my “Don’t be stupid” reminder when it comes time for me to cook Christmas Dinner.

Speaking of Christmas! The neighbors have put up their traditional Christmas musical lights!

Shoot me.

All night, those twinkling little shits play snippets of beloved holiday carols, and I’m starting to turn into a Grinch because of it. There are only so many times you can hear the first few bars of “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” before it starts to make you crazy. Doesn’t help that some of my local shops started their Christmas spiel in mid-October.


Well, I don’t have much else to report this time, kids.

Maybe next time I’ll have an amusing anecdote that doesn’t involve me causing myself bodily harm.




Cheating in November

Now that October is over, and Halloween has come and gone, I really only have two more things to look forward to this year: November and Christmas.

However, before I dive in to my plans for these last two months, let’s take a look back on my surprisingly boring October.

A couple of weeks ago, I got very sick for about a week. High fever, severely swollen throat, etc. It was gross, uncomfortable, and I’m still waiting for my voice to come back.

Before that episode, I volunteered at the haunt for one night. Turned out, they were really short-staffed, and yet, we managed to pull off a pretty great show. I placed top scene in Madhouse, and madhouse placed Top House for the night. No major problems. It was all-in-all a good night.

Yesterday, I carved a pumpkin for the first time. Me being me, I had to go unorthodox, and decided to carve a TARDIS, which, though I was tempted to give up several times, turned out pretty good.

Afterwards, I went Trick-or-treating with my sister, her man, and their son. The itty bitty was dressed as Mario, complete with a mustache that covered half of his face. He also managed to prove that Mustaches make the costume, little kids can make anyone trying to be scary laugh, and a five year old that says “thank you” makes out like a bandit on Halloween.

Now, as November pushes October ahead, thoughts of writing and cooking replace the spiders and zombies, just as paper Turkeys replace felt ghosts in all the major shopping centers. It’s time to begin writing for NaNoWriMo, and planning ways to make thanksgiving dinner better.

As for my writing, I’m picking up a story that I’d put aside for months. Every time I opened the document, I started turning a bit green, so I hid it away, and this month, I’m going to pick it back up and, hopefully, finish it by New Year’s. I suppose, in a way, it’s cheating. I’ve already got 19k words done on it, so I think I’ll reset the word count and just add the 50k words over the next 30 days. This month promises to be about as sleepless as October was last year, and I’m oddly okay with that.

Oh! And the fair! As of yesterday, the Greater Agricultural Fair is now open. Rides, unhealthy, overpriced food, animals, and terrible music make for the perfect wind-down from Halloween, leading back to the obligatorily family-friendly Christmas. Yay!

And of course, the world ends in December, so we have that to look forward to. With any luck, I won’t have to buy anyone Christmas presents.

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As the wind rolls in.

My apologies, dear readers, but I seem to have misplaced a few days.

Actually, Saturday night, I developed a fever, and was in bed for a few days. By the time I finally got out of bed, I’d missed the Orionid meteor shower, and there’s a hurricane heading towards me. Thank you, mother nature.

So, since I spent the past who-knows-how-long in my death bed, I really don’t have anything good for an update. I’m now just waiting for the last remnants of my illness to fade off, so people will stop yelling at me when I step outside.

Ciao for now, lovelies.

I can’t stay away.

Last night, I volunteered at my local haunted house again. I know I said I wouldn’t, but, let’s be honest, that slightly sick pleasure you get from scaring people is kind of addicting.

It was nice seeing some of the people I’d worked with in the past, and I had a chance to meet a few new faces, though I didn’t get a chance to talk with them all. Actually, being short-staffed kind of worked out in our favor. We worked better together; crossing into one-another’s scenes, collaborating for the best scares, and generally having a good time, while providing one for the customers. A girl in the scenes behind me affected a foot fetish and followed people around, begging them for their feet, while the customers shuffled away from her, proving foot fetishes are just as creepy as dead mental patients.

At the end of the night was the usual wrap-up meeting, though I noticed the top scenes were now by house, instead of haunt-wide. Madhouse placed first, of course, and yours truly placed top scene in Madhouse. No one who worked with me last year was surprised. Except for me. I was fully prepared to accept defeat. This time.

All-in-all, I had a great time. A lot of people nudged me towards coming back, though, after today, I’m not sure my body can handle it anymore. When I woke up this morning, my feet hurt so badly, I could barely walk, and my body feels like a weightlifting midget’s been bouncing on it while I slept. I don’t remember it hurting this much last year. I suppose this is what I get for not starting in September.

Once I sound less like a frog has taken control of my vocal cords, I’ll think about returning for another night. I missed watching people run away from teenage girls, especially the big, buff guys.

And the nominations are…

Today, a friend of mine took me to see the new movie Frankenweenie. There was no one else in the theater, so we pretty much had a private showing, and it was lovely. However, this post isn’t about that.

When I came home from the movie, I checked my stats and noticed I had a comment on my blog about bullying. From the looks of the preview, I was mentioned in someone else’s post, which made me kind of giddy. I went ahead and checked it out, and it turns out, my dear readers, a fellow blogger had nominated yours truly for something called The Compassionate Communicator Award.

As I’m so very humble, and I never play up my own achievements, I ‘d originally decided to graciously accept the nomination, and pass it on, as per the rules.

But then I realized something.

For the most part, a lot of the blogs I’ve taken the time to read had the “humor” tag, and it was kind of difficult to look through and find the posts that are what I assume to be fitting. It’s not that I have anything against non-comical bloggers, my attention span just drifts too much if I’m not riveted by what I’m reading.

I’d be a terrible book critic.

However, I will instead offer my sincerest thanks to Ad-libb3d, who nominated me, among others. I’m highly flattered that you enjoyed my post enough to mention it in your press conference.


Also, who was that man in the trench coat that rushed out of the hall? Was he a friend of yours?

I think I might have offended him when I laughed…


I like pretty things.

I’m not ashamed to say that, like almost every other girl alive, I love pretty, shiny things. I guess I share that trait with squirrels, too.

While I get distracted by said pretty things almost constantly, I do have my standards. Unlike a lot of women, I don’t have much use for a lot of expensive metals, or diamonds. I prefer jewelry that is one-of-a-kind, or hand made.

For instance, a friend of mine I met last year at the haunted house makes these lovely adornments that, for lack of a better term, rock.

Vintage, gothy, cute, punky, whatever your fancy, she’s really good at matching styles.

Another favorite is something I’d blogged about before, but I just can’t get enough of. Critters are just too adorable, in the lovely creepy way, to pass up. They’re cuddly, they’re pretty, and they’re the perfect gift for your little Wednesday.

Or, you know, your favorite blogger. Have I mentioned how much my readers mean to me?

There are also some local shops and such that I like going to, like Aphotic Crypt, which you can order things online from, as well. They sell contacts and body jewelry, and a few local artists sell their goods in the shop, as well.

I’m always on the lookout for new shops and new indie creators. I like nifty stuff.