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Loads of laundry so far today: 5 and counting
Piles of paperwork I have waded through so far today: 42 and counting.

Seriously! The paperwork! Holy deforestation, batman: SO MUCH PAPER. When I think of all the paper I have received, used, wasted, saved in my life, not even including how much paper is in ALL THE BOOKS I've read, borrowed, bought, loaned, given away) my head hurts. The amount of BANK STATEMENTS alone is discombobulating.

We keep binders full of "important papers" that go back, in many cases, around 10 years, often more. They include bank accounts, fund statements, pension plan year-end summaries, salary statements, insurance letters, house information, appliance manuals, receipts, tax returns, and much much more. In the hunt for the bank info I need for the FBAR reports, I have been sidetracked by the need to tidy up our filing system, and also to hopefully RECYCLE some of the huge piles of paper we have taking up space in our house. If we only need to save information back 7 years, then I have by far more than I need. As I write this, there are 5 binders next to me, EIGHT on the ping pong table and another 16 various binders, notebooks & filing boxes in various places around the house. I cleaned out several today and thought, more than once: WHY are we saving this?

I'm still la-la-la-ing with my hands over my ears about the boxes of magazines we have archived everywhere. PAPER INTERVENTION NEEDED!

This may very well be one of the coolest websites EVER: The Scale of the Universe
Even more amazing, considering it was created by two FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLDS.

We are dog-sitting London again this week. It's funny how very different the personalities of all the dogs we have taken care of in the past few months are. Eddie and Mental are boys, London is a girl. Both Eddie & Mental love to go for walks, pulling us along, very serious about the business of marking every possible rock or corner. Mental is like a big kid: constantly wanting to play and run and fetch. London practically has to be dragged out of the house. I have never met a dog that REFUSES to go for a walk. She sits down. She puts her paw on the leash and shoves it to the ground. Repeatedly. She backs up. She drags us back to the door. She looks at us with her huge brown liquid eyes and refuses to budge. It's hilarious and very disconcerting. You're a DOG. Dogs WALK!

One of the pieces of paper that I found in the filing box labeled "Elizabeth" today said only this: "Talking about music is like dancing about architecture" (from Playing By Heart). I don't even remember the movie at all, but I still like the quote.

My good friend Camilla came over last night and spent the evening with us. I'm so glad I've had extra time with her this year...she was here at Christmas time, and I saw her a couple of times then, and now she's here for 2 weeks and I've already gotten together with her twice and we are planning lunch next week, and she might be home again in Sweden for Easter! Since she moved to Poland 5 years ago, I've been lucky to see her twice a year (at Christmas and during summer) so this has been a big bonus. We had a great dinner and then sat around in the living room with Anders and the kids just chatting. Karin wanted to watch a movie for myskväll but Camilla convinced her it would be more fun to talk or play a game. So Karin and Martin went and found a language question game that we have never played before and started asking us questions from it. It was so fun! Here are a couple of samples:

1. The name of what popular make of automobile becomes a regular uncapitalized word if you insert the letter J somewhere inside it?

2. What seven-letter word starting with the letters QU becomes a new word when you change the QU to AS?

3. If you aspirate (add a H sound to) the word OBOE, you get HOBO. Aspirate the name for a part of the face to get a word meaning intellectual.

4. The name of what animal becomes the name of a bird when you change its first letter from M to G?

And this one was really fun:

5. The last two letters of LLAMA are the first two letters of MARMOT. Its last two letters are the first two of OTTER. And ITS last two letters are the first two of ERMINE. Together they form the chain: LLAMA, MARMOT, OTTER, ERMINE. The names of what three familiar animals complete a similar chain starting with HORSE and ending with ELEPHANT?

HORSE, _______________, __________________, ________________, ELEPHANT
mood: accomplished
music: 'splosions on TV


1. Ford = fjord
2. quinine = asinine
3. highbrow
4. moose = goose


Please DO NOT bring that game to our reunion in June. I couldn't even think of any possible answers! BAD GANE! Love, Lizardmom

Ha! I am totally bringing it. It was really fun and yes really hard. These were five that we actually figured out!

I was thinknig the exact same thing: this game is impossible - I couldn't think of any of the answers. I blame the fact that English isn't my native language! (though woe the person who thinks up questions like this in Dutch cause I'm pretty sure I'd be just as bad as thinking up the answers but what can I blame it on then?? ;-))

We missed many more than we figured out, I have to say :)


OOPS! - probably realizing that I can't spell the word GAME- might have something to do with no possible answers! Lizardmom

From Megsie

I GOT FJORD! I GOT MOOSE TO GOOSE! But that is all I got. This could be dangerous. And time consuming. xo

Re: From Megsie

Oh, and for that face with the "h" thing: I knew HOSE was wrong, but Highs? No. I even went to Hears. Huh. Highbrow.

Re: From Megsie

That one took us awhile :)

Re: From Megsie

Especially considering I have a whole box full!

Wow, that is one cool site!!! And I'm surprised that you posted the answers straightaway, instead of waiting to see what your readers might come up with! :-D

They were HARD! I figured it was only fair :)

My kind of game, but only on a day when I have gotten a good amount of sleep!

As for drowning in papers - there are plain white boxes at Ikea that are built for putting hanging files into, which I have used for a couple of years now to keep my papers in order. I got my method for organizing the files by adapting a system (by Suze Orman???) I found on to Swedish laws and adding files for my medical stuff. It has actually worked very well, even though, like most people, I can go months without putting stuff in its proper place. The total amount of financial papers I save has decreased remarkably.
However, all of the kids' drawings, crafts and other memorabilia are going to do me in :P

Hahahaha! I remember those days of feeling completely buried in the landslide of kid drawings! I can tell you it DOES ease up after elementary! :D


I didn't even attempt the game - I thought perhaps it was in Swedish! But I do know about dogs that don't walk - Darwin HATES going for a walk, but I make him go anyway. The others just drag him along!


I solved question number 2 from a Bash (Unix/Linux) command prompt:

cd /usr/share/dict
for i in $(grep "^qu.....$" american-english); do grep ^as${i#qu} american-english; done

Who said computer language can be hard to understand? :-) According to that word list (which isn't complete by any means, just ~98,000 words and phrases including a good share of names), there is exactly one hit each if you replace AS with e.g. AW, GL or RE.

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lizardek's obiter photos
lizardek's obiter photos

Feeling generous? Be my guest!

I can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Abraham Lincoln

obiter snippets

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