Friday, November 30, 2012


Nananananananananananananana!  Batgirl!  (Um, you were singing the Batman theme song with me, right?)

I'm lucky Sadie doesn't read my blog.  She'd probably bite me if she did.  But I couldn't resist photographing her oh-so-cute Batgirl ears.

She still seems to be healing well.  We took the Cone of Shame off of her briefly a couple days ago and she took the opportunity to rip all her scabs off (sorry I know, ew) so she was quickly re-Coned.  But I took a good look at her leg today and it really does look like the incision has healed over; still, we'll probably keep the CoS on her until her next appointment on Wednesday.  Lee generally picks her up to put her in the car, and the last time we took her in, he swung her around (gently, duh) and said, "My flashlight's not working!" which *totally* cracked me up and I was too far away for Sadie to bite.

I know I'm supposed to be posting travel pics, but I'm working on uploading pictures for the parental units' 2013 calendar (we make a calendar for them as a Christmas present with pictures we've taken throughout the year) so I haven't delved into the next bit of travel pics.  And of course the next post will be stitching related, but that's fun too.  Ta-ta for now, peeps!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Sacile, Italy

No Salzburg pictures yet, I have to get through the Italy and Slovenia pictures first : )  One day Lee got off work a little early so we hopped in the car to drive out to the town of Sacile.  We still have no idea how to say it, is the C soft or a ch sound like in church?  Mostly we say it Say-Chile (like the country Chile).  It's a cute little town; we walked around for a while to find something for my brother's birthday and eventually walked in this store that sold leather shoes and wallets and stuff.  We were in there for quite some time looking at the wallets and the saleslady had a rather long and extremely one-sided conversation with us because she spoke about as much English as we do Italian (read:  practically none).  The one thing we DID understand is when she said "no capeesh" (however you spell it) which kind of made us laugh.  We did buy a wallet and then, because we're goobers who used to live in Japan, we automatically bowed to the saleslady when we paid for it.  Which made me laugh even more.

But then we walked around the town and enjoyed the beautiful fall foliage.

Seriously gorgeous, right?

Ooh, speaking of seriously gorgeous!!  I love my sweet hubby : )

Lee took this one, trying to be all artsy with the vivid colors, but the other ones are mine.

You can see between the two trees on the left that there's an area there where a bunch of guys were playing soccer.  Nice weather for it.

This was just across the street, I had to take a picture of this sign for Bennet and Missy.  I bet the drivers on the road were wondering what I was photographing : )  There's a small river that runs by where the trees were and we saw a trail, so we walked on down that way to find...

Bamboo.  Pretty sure we didn't walk to China.

This was some kind of town fortification or something or other...I forget what.

We had a bit of trouble with taking pictures because of where the sun was in the sky, it kept washing out the sky and making the foreground really dark.  We did the best we could.

Love that bright pop of red.

The ducks started congregating under the bridge when they saw us stop but alas, we had no bread to feed the ducks.  They were sad.  So was I.

This was part of a fence near the river and I thought it looked like a funny mustache so I had to take a picture.

Last picture for Sacile, this reminds me of Nancy Drew #18, Mystery of the Moss-Covered Mansion.  I always think of that book when I see moss hanging down like this.  I like weeping willows, too.

Anyway, I'm off to go veg on the couch.  I've had a headache almost all day and it's seriously diminishing my desire to work on my to-do list, which is not short.  Ehh, it'll still be there tomorrow.  Ciao!

Friday, November 23, 2012

My Verona, Part 2

Sadie update:  We took her to the vet today for a checkup and he's very, very pleased with her progress and happy that she's already putting weight on the leg when she walks.  She's got another 2 weeks of only coming out of the kennel a few times a day to go potty, and after her next appointment we'll start talking about some tiny amounts of exercise for her.  That's a long shot better than the first time around, when she was kennel-bound for a solid month.  She'll be wearing the Cone of Shame for a little longer while the incision heals but so far, we're happy and optimistic for a pretty quick recovery.  Yay!

So the first time I tried to upload pictures for this post, I got a nice little error message saying I had used up all of my 1 gig free storage for pictures.  Oops.  So I had to buy storage to keep sharing bazillions of pictures : )

Also, I'm trying out the post scheduling feature on Blogger so we'll see if this actually shows up when it's supposed to.  Lookit me trying to use technology.  Anyway, back to the pictures, and back to Verona.  We walked around the town, heading toward Castelvecchio and went past this bridge, so we stopped to take lots of pictures.

This is the not-as-crooked one.

We tried quite a few different focal points, different zooms, etc. but I think those two pics are the ones I like best.

Lee took this one 'cause he liked the trees.  We saw some beautiful fall foliage in Italy, and when we got back to England it was totally gorgeous here too.  Only now it's been raining quite a bit for the last several days, so we're back to damp and dreary.  In other words, England.  Dude, it got dark today before 4 o'clock.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, this was taken in the courtyard at Castelvecchio.  There's a museum but we didn't go.

There's a bridge you can get to that's part of the castle grounds so the next few shots are taken from there.

Hey, that white bridge looks somewhat familiar.

Hey, who's that chick? : )  I liked the orangey red colors on the bricks.

And a closeup courtesy of Lee.

Lee climbed up on the other side of the bridge from where I was, and here you can see how important it is what direction you face for lighting purposes.  Always better to take pics with the sun behind you, otherwise everything looks all washed out.

We didn't go all the way across the bridge, but I thought this was a kind of neat picture of the farthest section of it.

We left the Castelvecchio bridge and walked down another little ways to take pictures of that bridge.  Know how I can tell we're in Italy?  Because there's a CRANE in the shot.  That happened lots of other times, especially in Florence.  And once in Paris.

Zoom in...

Zoom out.  Then we moseyed on back toward the arena and the gucci car garage and saw this:

Lee thinks that's a mean-looking fountain.  I wouldn't want to sit on it, that's for sure.

So I hope everyone out there had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We're in Salzburg and probably not eating turkey : )  Ta-ta for now, peeps!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Last week was Cookie-Palooza.  I decided to put together 4 giant care packages and make as many different kinds of cookies as I could manage in one week to send out for a slightly-after-Thanksgiving treat (dern holiday is early this year or else these would have been a pre-Thanksgiving treat). I may be crazy, but at least it manifests as hundreds of cookies and not something weird like macaroni art or spinning thread out of dog hair.

So during Cookie-Palooza, I made 16 different cookie recipes for a grand total of 754 cookies in a single week, 688 of which were sent out in care packages yesterday (along with the rest of my leftover Halloween candy, yay!).  The remaining cookies were taste-tested by me, my friends Karen and Karyn (I'm considering changing my name to Karin), and some went to work with Lee.  I know someone out there wants all the deets on what I made : )  So here you go!  These are more or less in the order in which I made them, not ranked by how much I like them.  'Cause I can't choose a favorite cookie.

1.  Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
I started out with my mom's signature recipe.  One bowl, one measuring cup, one measuring spoon, and all awesome.  When my parents dropped me off at college for the first time, Mom handed me a container of these and told me to go introduce myself to the other girls on my floor and offer them cookies.  Two months into my first semester, my suitemates started trying to get me to go home more often to bring back more cookies.  I could have sworn that I'd posted this recipe before, but it looks like I haven't...that will be remedied shortly!  Scroll to the bottom of this post if you can't wait.

2.  Chocolate Peppermint
I started with this recipe for double chocolate dream cookies, and then instead of chocolate chips, I added chopped Ghirardelli peppermint bark.  I don't like mint, so I didn't try them, and Lee said he's not over-fond of mint either, so I have no idea how good these might be for those of you who do like mint.  The Ghirardelli stuff is expensive (it took about a bag and a half to get 2 cups) so maybe try crushed candy canes or peppermint candies, or chopped candy cane Hershey's Kisses?  I couldn't find those here.  I got the original recipe out of this cookbook.

3.  Peanut Butter Lovers
I used this recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction because it was a good way to get rid of some leftover Reese's Peanut Butter Cups from Halloween.  I am not a giant peanut butter fan (yes I know I'm crazy, I also dislike dark chocolate) so I didn't actually try these.  And I'm a little worried because I used reduced-fat peanut butter and I think maybe that will make these cookies really hard by the time they arrive at their destination?  Oops.

4.  Spiced Apple
I don't remember why I started Googling apple cookie recipes but I found this one at the Naptime Chef and OMG YUM.  I made tablespoon-size cookies because all my other cookies are that size, but I think these might actually be better teaspoon-size because they are dense and spicy and totally delicious.  I may try adding butterscotch chips to these when I make them again, because apple and butterscotch just belong together.  Or maybe raisins, as suggested by the Naptime Chef.

5.  Apple Butterscotch Chip
I found several apple cookie recipes so I made these ones from too.  I didn't do the glaze though since it's easier to go glaze-free for mailing cookies.  These are different from the spiced apple ones; much lighter color, not nearly as spicy, but still good (just the other ones are better IMHO).  I doubled the recipe thinking it might not make very many based on the paltry amount of mix-ins, and then I used the entire bag of butterscotch chips for the doubled recipe.  Because I can do that.  These were my friend Karen's favorite even without the glaze.

6.  Double Chocolate Cranberry
I got this recipe out of The Cookie Bible and it's another one I'll have to share on here (scroll to the very end of this post if you can't wait).  I only found it earlier this year but I've already made it several times for care packages--it's totally yummy.  Chocolate cookie dough with dried cranberries and chocolate chunks = YUM.

7.  White Chocolate Macadamia Nut
I recently started looking for a good white chocolate macadamia nut cookie recipe...I tried one a few weeks ago and it was okay, but then I tried this one from The Brown-Eyed Baker (hey, I'm a brown-eyed baker too!).  I did change it up a tiny bit though--the first recipe I tried had almond extract and vanilla in it, so I did 2 teaspoons of each instead of the 1 tablespoon vanilla called for in this recipe.  I *love* the almond extract with these.

8.  Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip
Another new-to-me recipe, this one courtesy of Baking Bites.  They got two thumbs up from Lee, so this is the peanut butter cookie recipe that will stay in my personal cookbook.  I actually did try one of these, and the crunchy peanut butter makes it seem like you added peanuts to the cookies without having to actually do that extra step, which is kinda awesome.

9.  White Chip Orange
Another recipe I got from the Nestle cookbook I've had for years, though you can also find it on their website along with a nice picture.  I've been making these for several years now and I always use the dried orange peel you can find in the spices at the supermarket.  One of these days I'm going to get myself a microplane zester and try it with fresh grated orange peel!  In my cookie odyssey last week, I ran across the suggestion to rub the freshly-grated orange zest into the white sugar before mixing up the cookie dough, as that's supposed to suffuse the sugar with the orange flavor and make it that much more orange-tastic.  I want to try that.  Plus, if I do fresh orange zest, then I have to eat the orange, and I have a feeling I should eat more fruits and veggies.

10.  Chewy Chocolate Chip
This is another recipe from Baking Bites and it was awesome.  Warm out of the oven, this cookie was phenomenal, and it's still totally yummailicious the next day.  Again, I dropped these by tablespoons to be consistent with the rest of my cookies (and because the bags I'm using to package them are only 4 inches wide at the top, I do two cookies back-to-back in each bag and they're labeled because I'm that nice), and I also used an entire bag of chocolate chips because it annoys me when recipes only use part of the bag.  My only other annoyance with this recipe is that it didn't make a billion cookies because that's about how many I could have eaten (but I was good, they almost all went into the care packages).

11.  Oatmeal White Chocolate Cranberry
This recipe is courtesy of Vicki's daughter Brittany (I swiped it off Vicki's blog) and I think they should come with a warning label because you cannot eat just one.  Or two.  More like six.  And it makes a nice big batch too; I got 62 cookies (tablespoon-size) out of it.  My dad was asking about using white chips in my mom's oatmeal chocolate chip cookie recipe, and I told him to try this one instead 'cause YUM.

12.  Macadamia Nut White Chip Pumpkin
These are again from the Nestle cookbook (can you tell I've used that cookbook a lot?) and you can find the recipe on their site, plus I've posted it here before too.  I first tried this recipe not too long after Lee and I got married and thus was born my love affair with all things pumpkin.  Well, I'd always loved pumpkin pie, but these cookies proved that pumpkin wasn't a one-trick gourd.  These cookies are soft and spicy and pumpkin-y and totally delicious.

13.  Orange Cranberry Brownie
I got this one from Baking Bites, and at first I was thinking it wasn't different enough from my double chocolate cranberry chunkies to warrant keeping this recipe too.  Then I tried one of these that didn't fit in the care packages and ZOMG YUM.  A couple days after baking and it was still all soft and yummalicious with just a hint of orange flavor and I think I may have to keep it after all.  I used semisweet chocolate chips since I don't go for dark chocolate, but that's just me.

14.  Oreo Cheesecake
Here's another one from Sally's Baking Addiction, though mine didn't really look like the ones she has pictured on her blog.  She said to crush the Oreos into tiny pieces in the recipe, so I did (that part was fun too, smashing them with a meat mallet is a good way to release any pent-up hostility), and my cookies were much more speckled (though still yummy).  Again, I did these with tablespoon-size cookies rather than the monster cookies she posted, but I need to do some tinkering with the oven temperature and/or bake time.  At 325° for 10 minutes, my cookies still looked a bit underdone even after cooling on the baking sheet (since cookies keep baking a bit if you leave them on the baking sheets).  Don't get me wrong, I love a slightly underbaked cookie, but even though I'm theoretically immune to salmonella from eating cookie dough for all these years, that doesn't mean everyone else is.  Still, this was the one cookie that Lee stole off the cookie racks, so what does that tell you?

15.  Snickerdoodles
Here's a classic cookie recipe for you that I got once again from Baking Bites (can you see I've found a couple new favorite baking sites?).  Generally I make drop cookies (as evidenced by the 14 other drop cookie recipes you've seen thus far on this post) but these are such a classic cookie that I decided I needed a snickerdoodle recipe in my stash.  Really, it wasn't that hard to roll 'em in sugar even though it's not quite as simple as plunking them down on the baking sheet and away you go.  Yummy recipe and appeals to weirdos like Lee (I love you honey) who prefer their cookies without nuts (lucky for me Lee loves me even though *I'm* nuts)...there's also a peppermint snickerdoodle version if you go for that kind of thing.

16.  Oatmeal Scotchies
Yes, this is totally the recipe on the back of the bag of butterscotch chips, but I'm rather fond of these and I thought we needed more butterscotch in the care packages.  Maybe I just need more cookie recipes that use butterscotch chips.  I could add them to one of the chocolate cookie doughs, would that be weird?  Maybe I should just try them in the apple spice cookies instead.

So that's all the types of cookies I made, and somehow I still missed gingersnaps and oatmeal raisin, and I still have quite a stack of other recipes to try.  There's always next time, I suppose, though I'm not planning another crazy escapade like this any time soon (ok, so there is a cookie drive next month...but that's a long time from now and don't burst my bubble and tell me it's coming soon 'cause I'm not listening).  And since I promised, here are the recipes for oatmeal chocolate chip (my mom's signature cookie) and double chocolate cranberry chunkies.  Enjoy!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (recipe from Christy's mom, Nina)

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups quick oats
2 cups chocolate chips (I like milk chocolate, you could do semisweet if you prefer)

Preheat oven to 375
°.  Cream together butter, sugar, and brown sugar.  Add eggs and mix until fluffy.  Beat in flour, baking soda, and salt; finally stir in the oats and chocolate chips.  Drop by rounded teaspoon (or, if you're me, tablespoon) onto ungreased baking sheet.  Bake for 9 to 12 minutes; cool 2 minutes on baking sheet before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

Double Chocolate Cranberry Chunkies

1 3/4 cups flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups semisweet chocolate chunks
3/4 cup dried cranberries or dried tart cherries

Preheat oven to 350°.  Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl; set aside.  Beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy; beat in egg and vanilla until well blended.  Gradually beat in flour mixture, then stir in chocolate chunks and cranberries.

Drop dough by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheets.  Bake 11 to 12 minutes or until set; cool 2 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.  To make a dozen giant cookies, drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls and flatten slightly before baking.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

My My My Verona! Part 1

Sadie update:  She seems to be doing really well.  On Wednesday, the vet walked to our house (perk of living in a small village, that was a giant relief to me not to have to get Sadie back in the car) to take the compression bandage off of her; Sadie was really thrilled about that right up until she got the Cone of Shame on.  Still, I think she'd prefer the Cone of Shame to the compression bandage, and as soon as her incision has healed enough then the CoS will go bye-bye too.  Sadie has been getting around pretty well when we take her outside a few times a day, she just hops along on three legs and she seems to be in pretty good spirits too.  Most of the day she's very quiet and just sleeps in her kennel, and other than the first day she hasn't even resorted to being a giant pathetic pain in the rear by making me hand-feed her.  I think she's handling the surgery thing better this time around.

As for me, well, on Tuesday night I discovered the hard way that Lee closes the sliding glass door behind him when he takes the dogs out.  WHAM!!!  Four days later my nose is only a little bit sore...I'm just glad that I didn't end up getting huge bruises all over my face.  And now I'm much more careful around that dang door!

So I mentioned that Lee and I went to Italy for a week, right?  He was working, and I did a little homework and a lot of procrastinating, but we did have enough time to drive down to Verona one day.  Verona, you may remember, is the setting for several Shakespearean plays, perhaps most famously Romeo & Juliet.

We managed to get to Verona just fine thanks to our GPS, and it wasn't too hard to find parking either.  The parking area was actually pretty Gucci--underground parking and each space had a light over it that was green if it was unoccupied and red if a car was parked in it, so you could easily see where free spaces were.  Pretty cool.  Anyway, the pic above is part of the city walls.

And I found a hippo for my hippo-loving mom : )  This dude was in front of a restaurant.

Just a view down the street...why aren't American cities all pretty and picturesque like this?  Not to say America is totally ugly or anything, but for the most part I'd say we're lacking in charm compared to Europe.

There's a rather large arena so of course, there are these guys dressed as Roman gladiators, who expect you to pay to take their picture.  I was standing across the street so I just used a zoom lens and bwahahaa, free picture.  Like they're going to be able to track me down to pay for it : p

And there's the arena in all its glory.  You can take tours of it, but we didn't--we just spent a few hours walking around the town.

So I know this is totally tacky and completely non-historical touristy stuff but after watching the movie Letters to Juliet, I just wanted to go to Juliet's house and take a picture of that courtyard and balcony, and Lee is such a sweetie pie that he went along with it.  So we found our way to the courtyard at Casa di Giulietta and here's this:

Not where Juliet's secretaries set up shop; it's a place that does machine embroidery on aprons and potholders and such.  I think in the movie, Sophie had to follow the secretary around the corner and down a few blocks to find where the secretaries work; in real life, I didn't see any letters to Juliet on the walls.

Here's the statue of Juliet; the lighter areas are where people grab the statue to take pictures.  No idea why they grab her chest though.  And why is she supposed to be good luck for lovers?  She and Romeo had a whirlwind romance, got married, and pretty much died the next day.  How is that good luck?  Plus she was 14 at the time, she couldn't possibly know anything yet.

But still, there are some wonderful quotes from Romeo & Juliet.  I can still remember my 9th grade English teacher reading this bit to our class for the first time.

There's her balcony and people taking pictures with the statue.  The house dates back to the 13th century but it was originally an inn.  The balcony was added in the 1920s or 30s for touristy reasons; it's actually part of a sarcophagus (which is kind of appropriate considering the source story).  You can tour the house and go stand on the balcony, but we skipped that bit since all I wanted to do was take pictures in the courtyard.

The inn was owned by the Capello family (perhaps the inspiration for the Capulets?) and their symbol was a hat, seen here, because "capello" means hat in Italian.  This is the entry to the courtyard; to get to Juliet's courtyard, you have to walk through a tunnel covered in...

Ew.  Graffiti and gum.  How pleasant.  Having gotten my picture of Juliet's statue and fake balcony, we wandered on back into the town.

Here's a little market in one of the piazzas, I forget which.  It was your basic touristy stuff along with a few stalls that sold fresh produce.

Again with the beautiful architecture!  I noticed this time around in Italy that they are not afraid of colorful buildings.  We were out driving one day and saw two buildings both painted like the Italian, the entire side of the building facing the highway had 3 giant stripes on it.  It was kind of fun.

Another picture by Lee...

And one more of the market.  Then we walked on down toward Castelvecchio (Old Castle) which you'll see in a future blog post.

Looking down one of the alleyways that we passed.

This was on the side of a building we walked past; Lee and I kinda wondered if it was another sarcophagus re-purposed for decoration like Juliet's balcony.  Is that a thing, decorating with sarcophagi?  Well, at least they're prettier than most coffins nowadays.

And another interesting detail on a building we passed.  Just kinda cool, huh?

More Verona later...for now, I'm still making cookies.  I've been working on this blog post between batches : )  Ciao, peeps!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Square One

Sadie had her surgery yesterday, and we picked her up this evening.  The vet said the surgery went well; the implant from the first surgery HAD failed (the line holding the joint in place snapped), so he doubled up on the line this time to make it twice as strong, which is what he would do for a dog twice Sadie's size.  But she needs that too because she's Sadie and she's crazy like that.  Right now she's still got the compression bandage on; that will come off tomorrow but the vet wanted it to stay on for tonight and Sadie is not happy about it.

Pink is not my favorite color.
(Luckily, Sadie doesn't read the blog so she doesn't know her picture is up on here unless Lee tells her.)
I don't care if you gave me peanut butter, I still want to kill you.
It was really, really hard just to get her in the car.  The compression bandage is there to keep her from bending that leg at all, but since she's Sadie, she squirms like crazy all the stinkin' time and she's caterwauling and all of a sudden I see that hot pink leg sticking out at a completely wrong angle to the rest of her body.  I was absolutely terrified that we'd snapped her leg in half trying to get her in the car so I was flipping out just about as much as Sadie (to be honest, I still feel frazzled).  The vet was out there with us and we finally got her settled; he said with another dog he'd be quite concerned with the amount of noise she was making, but she acted like that the first time she had the surgery too.  He says she's not a brave girl when she first wakes up from the surgery and at this point I'm convinced that Sadie is me in dog form, I imagine I'd be a total weenie after surgery too.

So now we've had her home for about two and a half hours or so.  The vet told us we were in for an uncomfortable evening and he definitely had that right.  She keeps trying to shift around to get comfortable but it just ain't happening with that giant pink leg, so she's whining a bit.  She conked out for a while but she keeps waking back up a lot.  And when we first got her in the kennel, she drank a TON of water so at some point this evening we're going to have to figure out how to get her outside to relieve herself.  Oh, this just keeps getting more fun.  It took some doing, but I got her to eat enough bread and peanut butter that she got her antibiotics down...she wouldn't take the bread from Lee, he was too chintzy with the peanut butter...Mom's got it handled!  I slathered that bread with the good stuff for her.  You can see the rest of it still in her dish, I'm just happy I got her to take the medication.

Vader has been acting a little weird too, he's left food in his bowl the last two nights.  Even the lady who runs the kennel commented on how much Vay lurves his food, so this is really atypical for him.  Maybe he's worried about Sadie too?  I don't know.  He has been enjoying going on walks though...Sadie is *really* going to hate it when we leave her in the house tomorrow to go walk without her.

We figure that maybe Sadie's problem the first time around was that she can't get traction on the wood floors downstairs, and her skidding around might have been what made the implant fail.  So to counteract that, I went out today and got five area rugs to kind of help in the spots where she has the most trouble.  This big green one (it's even really close in color to our couches, dang I'm good) is in the entryway at the foot of the stairs and I think it's going to be called the landing pad from here on out.  Sadie tends to barrel down the stairs like a furry black cannonball and then slide all over the entryway...we've seen her bodyslam into the door when she couldn't brake fast enough.  The other rugs are in the living room in the most skid-ariffic zones, including two in front of her kennel, so here's hoping that helps once she's recovered enough to be walking around the house.

So we are back at square one for surgery recovery.  Here's hoping that we have better luck transporting her tomorrow.