Is It Really Possible To Be Organized?

by Kimberly A. Cook                 (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

Finished doing my taxes Sunday so I could drop them off to my accountant. Every year I promise myself I’m getting them done in February and most years I don’t make it. They are a piece of cake with the day job, but it’s  the writing business which requires me to become OCD receipt girl.

Spec Ops Cat working hard on my desk to help me with taxes. See how concerned he is? Not!

Spec Ops Cat working hard on my desk to help me with taxes. See how concerned he is? Not!

Last week I was pondering just when my normally organized self got led astray. I’m pretty sure two major milestones are the cause. One was when I moved into my second house and the movers dumped my fabulously organized file cabinet upside down and I swear inside out. Those files never recovered.

Time two was when I went to transfer my contacts from my Palm Pilot to the Blackberry phone. Turns out the one version of the Palm Pilot software I owned was the one version Blackberry did not like and would not talk to.

I have not been organized since. Even when I migrated to the Samsung Galaxy S2 and grudgingly put in a few contacts, I kept carrying a paper list.

Then my Samsung died dead. Nada. Never to recover. The AT&T geek guy even replaced it free of charge after only three months since he couldn’t get it to work either. They thought it was me. Ha!

I’d bought the bestest niftiest backup program and all that was saved were a few photos since I still use a camera. Contacts all gone again. I’m staying with paper.

The more I try to streamline and simplify my life, the more the tech and bureaucracy gods are out to get me. I’m not paranoid if it’s true. So one more year of receipt chasing is in the books and I have grand and glorious plans to do it better next year.

Earlier! With unicorns and fairy dust! And Keebler elves……

Taxes done?



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Born To Be Wild For Spring?

by Kimberly A. Cook                 (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

Spring starts today! Except on the East Coast where it’s snowing. Again. Brutal! So sorry East Coasters.

So us best, West coasters have to make up for that and our thoughts turn to water sports! Spring Break to me always means the Beach Boys, the soundtrack of my youth.  So since I couldn’t find a “Surfin USA” video I liked enough, I went with the next best thing, Steppenwolf and Diesel!

Yes, I have the actual Steppenwolf vinyl record with “Born to be Wild” on it, still. Might be my new theme song. So Happy First Day of Spring! Happy Spring Break for those who have it! Happy Quirky Friday! Get your freak on!

P.S. And check out the great guns on Diesel’s jet ski driving daddy. Yowsa!

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How About Taking A Shopping Vacation?

by Kimberly A. Cook           (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

Spent time at my favorite antique store last Friday and found a treasure I can’t afford. Peeking out from under a lamp base and a radio was a fabulous wicker travel desk. This little piece of furniture immediately got me to thinking of the British Empire in India and Lawrence of Arabia all at the same time.

This is how I first caught sight of this beauty....

This is how I first caught sight of this beauty….

It’s an amazing desk with cubicles and drawers and hiding spots. Perfect for someone with a small space who could put their laptop right on top of the fold out table.

While I would have loved to snap it up, for the tune of $550 I didn’t. Taking a picture was close.

I require space to spread out on my desk, but oh the mind vacation and adventures I could dream of sitting at this little piece of history. That is one of the reasons I love looking at antique stores and perusing gadgets and gidgets of the past.

My imagination loves to take walks on the wild side when shopping. Plus I might find some treasures I can’t live without for the bead, book, shoe, and teapot collections.

The weekend before I made a slow mosey through our local Salvation Army Store. Scanned for a small drawer unit to up-cycle and make into a bathroom storage cabinet, but no luck on my quest.

I did find out where vases, punch bowls and extra plates wind up though.

I’ve had great luck treasure hunting at Goodwill Stores in the past, but that was my first foray into Salvation Army. Think I must be more of a Goodwill Girl. Still love my large ginger jar shaped yellow lamp base I got for $5 and my small facial tissue box cover for $1. The prices were right.

Look at the drawers and cubby holes!

Look at the drawers and cubby holes!

Thinking about the stories behind the items I take home makes me imagine what kind of lives they had and who bought them first.

I’d really like to know the story behind that antique travelling desk. Maybe the real Lawrence of Arabia used it after all?

Got any fun shopping finds?

P.S. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Bet there is a Leprechaun in one of those wee drawers…..


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Are You Smarter Than A Guinea Pig?

by Kimberly A. Cook               (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

This past week has seen great weather, me wanting to eat every carb and sugar loaded treat in sight and all of my tech gadgets functioning at 50 percent. It’s enough to make you crazy, but then I see these super smart guinea pigs and I know there is hope for the planet.

So grab a treat and see if you can run an obstacle course like these two cute guys! Have a great weekend and Happy Quirky Friday!


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Time To Spring Into Action?

by Kimberly A. Cook                (Twitter@    WarriorTales)

It’s official, Spring is here. The hyacinths have bloomed! These little bulbs pushing their way up into the sun and blooming always feels like Spring and Easter and bunny time to me. Granted, we are having an early Spring and the poor East Coast folks can’t even find the ground, little lone bulbs blooming, so we will celebrate for them.

This truly, absolutely means it is Spring!

This truly, absolutely means it is Spring!

I got all excited with the nice weather last weekend and went out and downsized my extra garden pots. Since we recycle, reuse and up cycle everything we get our hands on out here in Portlandia, I had to find a home for my used potting soil. Luckily, a co-worker at the day job volunteered to haul it home and till it into her garden.

This involved me using my fabulous 18 gallon Rubbermaid heavy totes I love and filling three to take to work Monday. We transferred the full totes in the parking lot and all is right with the world. I did ask her if we could do it as soon as possible in the morning because I didn’t want the worms to make a break for it and commandeer my Subaru. Or take up residency inside. Worms relocated. Excellent.

Now my sidewalk is clear and looking pretty spiffy. Also cleaned up the bird bath, refilled the feeders and cleaned the garage a little. Best reward? Able to bring out the table and chairs to sit in the warm rays of the sun with family in the afternoon. Perfect! Then took the table and chairs back inside since it will rain on Wednesday. Works for me.

Now, if I could just get as excited about cleaning inside the house and finishing my taxes. Somehow it doesn’t seem as much fun. Got Spring cleaning on your mind?





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Got A House Project In Mind?

by Kimberly A. Cook                  (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

One of my favorite tv shows is “Rehab Addict” with Nicole Curtis. She’s been rescuing and rehabbing old homes for more than twenty years. It’s the sixth season of her HGTV television show and you can watch it on YouTube. She is a rehabber and an artist. She not only rescues and knows her way around power tools and forklifts, she has an amazing design sense and uncovers each house’s story.

This weekend we have sun and I am going to attempt to downsize my garden pots in the backyard. And maybe even re-wire a lamp. Not sure about the second one; electricity is magic and can kill you, but I saw somebody do it on tv. The last part of that sentence must be the start to a lot of emergency rooms visits. My goal is to be safe.

Got home projects this weekend? Enjoy a quick peek with Nicole and Happy Quirky Friday!


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Do You Need A Stash Of Tea?

by Kimberly A. Cook            (Twitter@   WarriorTales)

Friday I went on a tea adventure to one of my favorite shopping spots, the Stash Tea Store in Tigard, Oregon. Since I buy English Breakfast decaf tea by the ton, this fabulous shop located inside their warehouse always has new treasures for me to find.

Back by the miniature tea sets for sale, you can peek a look in the warehouse. Tea heaven!

Back by the miniature tea sets for sale, you can peek a look in the warehouse. Tea heaven!

Tea drinking came to me after the Army, when I was on a three-month camping trip in Europe. My boyfriend would bring me black tea with sugar and cream and a piece of toast with jam for breakfast. It seemed quite decadent since I was usually still in my sleeping bag.

That hooked me on the power of tea. Then having high tea at Harrod’s when we got back to London took it to a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

I never acquired a taste for coffee, even in the Army. I was a hot chocolate girl in those days. Coffee smells great but doesn’t deliver as far as taste for me.  When I transferred into headquarters supply with the 4th S&T Battalion at Fort Carson, Colorado, my new Staff Sergeant told me I needed to make the coffee.

Need a tea pot? Or mug? Or tea bag holder? You might be able to find one here.

Need a tea pot? Or mug? Or tea bag holder? You might be able to find one here.

In 1976 we were sneaky about asserting our women’s rights, so instead of telling him I didn’t drink coffee and didn’t think I should have to make it, I made it. Using three times the coffee grounds required. I think it beat Navy coffee since you could barely get a spoon into the cup.


“What did you do to the coffee?” he bellowed.

“Did I make it wrong? ” I asked. “I don’t drink coffee, so I wasn’t sure.”

“You’re never making coffee again,” he yelled at me.

“Okay,” I replied. Mission accomplished. I did get a hot water pot for us hot chocolate, soup and tea fans, but I hadn’t ventured into the full romantic realm of tea.

I love everything about having tea; the tea pots, linens, golden spoons, China cups and saucers, scones, clotted cream, jam, steeping and most of all, time to relax with friends and family and chat. Such a civilized snack time. Or curling up with a good book and a hot cup of tea? Priceless.

Knew you wanted to see the miniature Peter Rabbit tea set close up. It's bunny time!

Knew you wanted to see the miniature Peter Rabbit tea set up close. It’s bunny time!

And it’s good for us too, antioxidants! So for anyone who hasn’t been to the Stash Tea Store, you can shop online and enjoy yourself.

P.S. I had to buy the Manatea tea infuser by Fred. Fill the manatee’s body with loose tea and his (or her) flippers hold onto your mug. Too cute!

Happy shopping!





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