since beginning blogging i have met the greatest people from all corners of the world. it wasn't the reason that i started blogging, all i wanted was to belong to a community that valued craft and enjoyed showing it to the world. but holy mackerel - it has been so much more rewarding than even that...
last week i was so excited to be an aunt that i really hadn't given my birthday much thought. mentioning it on the blog has brought such wonderful surprises...
this wonderful package is from julie. she drew some apples on the outside of the cigar box and lined it with papers like she has done with all these beautiful boxes she has made. my gift included pages from an old birding book, iraqi worry beads, spices, tea, a cotton pillow case, a cd of music by two israeli artists, a chausa chamsa - and israeli symbol to ward off the evil eye - a flip book! and a wonderful drawing from her daughter.
and this from daphne - get yourself to her blog... she has the wryest sense of humor and her drawings will charm the pants off you.
i also received a wonderful ecard from wendy, and well wishes from so many more....
i have said it before, and i will say it again - this blogging is great!!!
one of the many little pleasures i have, because of this blog, is the stats page. i'll admit that checking it 128 times a day is a bit obsessive, but the pleasure part is discovering that people have visited the blog through a google search, or bloglines search, or some other search vehicle.
'fancy feeling phlox' is how someone found me this morning... i don't know if they will come back but i am glad they left me with the wonderful alliteration...
and, because i can....
a fancy feeling phlox photo
framed by fence.
and, look at this....
a feather found floating freely....
one of these days soon, i will get back to some crafting....
chet, thinking to himself.... 'ohhh, ahhh, yeah right there....'
'no wait, now this side?...'
'oh yeah, back here, oh that's better...'
'hmm, i wonder if she can smell that?'
chettie went to the vet this morning - he is old(er) and has some issues with his skin, and his eyes, and his teeth (but we didn't address that today) lately. because of those things, mr. stinky and i headed to capitol hill to see what we could get to make his life a bit more comfortable.
this is what we got... to me, it looks like one big headache. the shampoo means i get to bathe him every few days, not really that bad but still, not that fun either. and the pills, they smell bad to me, so i will be cutting up some pieces of cheese to hide those in, and the watch to make sure he gets them down. it is amazing to see him eat a piece of cheese with such gusto and still manage not to bite into, much less swallow, the pill. dogs are sneaky that way. and for the eyes? not the easy to administer eye drops... oh no. i get to give him some ointment, two kinds! wish me luck, i will need it in a big way. he also got a rabies vaccine and the other boosters that start with a d (diphtheria plus...). on the positive side, there were two new gals working there and they both loved him within an inch of his life. he was getting about as much as he could handle - love, a chew treat, and a breakfast bar wrapper he found in the trash... that's my dog, alright.
and, oh yes i could smell the 'that', in a bad way, a very bad way.
i read alicia's post this morning. she showed her cup of coffee and it looked so good to me. so i made some.
i don't drink coffee more than a couple times a year. it love the way it smells,and tastes - if you make it the 'italian way', with lots of sugar and cream. at least that seems like the italian way to me. when mom and i were there many years ago, every morning she would get her espresso, add about 16 spoons of sugar and then some cream. it was like coffee flavored caramel. it is very good that way! i gave up coffee about 15 years ago, i decided i didn't really need the
caffeine, i drink green tea, ALL THE TIME, but for some reason, that is
different... mostly, drinking coffee now just makes my eye lids
this is a cream storm. that is what i call it when you pour your cream into the coffee and the swirls and movements it makes before stirring it in. it is easier to see in a glass mug. i LOVE that part of drinking coffee.
these are a few of the heirloom tomatoes i got at the grocery yesterday - and some little cucumbers and some patty pan squash too but i don't think you can see them.... my first criteria for the tomatoes was how pretty the coloration was, then if they were ripe, or not too ripe. there was a yellow one in there too, sooooo sweet. the one on the right here? i love so much the color swirls in the bottom. i made some tabbouleh with some of the tomatoes, and then i will make greek salad, and also have some caprese insalta because i got some basil and mozzarella too! got enough basil to make some pesto and have handy too... people might just start thinking i eat properly... will post about oreo's and wine for dinner some other time...
yesterday i was all set to spend money, from the sale of a doll on etsy, on golf lessons. i really reallyreallywant to play better. and it seems just hoping for that to happen, rather than practicing to make it happen, doesn't work. sister s bought me wine and dinner last night for my birthday and of course we were talking about playing next sunday. i kept saying that i had to get lessons, i need lessons, i don't know what the hell is wrong - i must have lessons! she told me to quit it, that i didn't need lessons, i needed confidenceand that i would work it out - it being the crazy crap i have been doing on the golf course. so i woke this morning thinking, it is cool and nice out, i have time, so i will go to the driving range and work it out...
three buckets later and a couple of blisters - from the number of balls i hit, NOT because i was holding the clubs too tightly... ha - i think i might have worked some of my issues through and i hope to report on sunday evening that i had a great round of golf and managed to hold it together for 18 holes.... that would be my hope.
there was a beginning golf class for kids that started at the same time i got to the range. it looked like it was for kids from 5 to 10 years old. i had fun watching them hit and learn and talk - and talk and talk... one little girl lost her water bottle and asked me if i had seen it... i think because i was the only woman hitting she felt ok coming up to me... of course i hadn't. there was another girl, probably 10 or so that came several minutes late - i think because of her father, since he looked a bit harried and was sighing when they walked by. she was older than any of the other girls and kept herself in the background and at the mat farthest from the instructor. i don't know if that is her normal personality, to hang back, or if she felt she already had singled herself out enough by arriving late. regardless, i wanted to go up to her and say hi, to tell her i was watching and i was impressed with how many times she connected with the ball, and how impressed i was to watch her take her time and think about what she was doing.
i know that holding back well. i do it all the time, always have. and i have found over and over again, that i am just a tiny bit bitter and resentful when i don't get the instruction, or attention or what ever, that i might have if i had been in the thick of things rather than on the fringes. i wanted to tell her that at the next lesson she should muscle up next to the boys her own age and listen when the instructor is talking to them about the game, to believe that she is just as good as those boys, that she has nothing to be afraid of. but i didn't - because there didn't seem to be the opportunity - and i was also a tiny bit certain that it really wasn't my place.
i hope that she learns the lesson of confidence sooner than i did. and if she doesn't continue with golf then i hope she practices it in math class, or on the playground or any number of places that she will be in her life.
see, just as i suspected, golf, it's a metaphor for life.
and, thank you EVERYONE for all the lovely birthday wishes - it was vey nice having all that attention and happiness sent my way.
finally, pictures are taken and the ditty bags are available on etsy. i loved making these little goodies, the perfect craft to keep me from walking into the kitchen and looking in the same cupboard or refrigerator door six times in one night to confirm - for the sixth time - that there stillisn't anything good to eat...
i spent the day with family. my cousin had a baby shower and i gave her the quilt i was working on last week. i played a successful game of 'heading her off at the pass'. she thought the quilt was for my sister w's baby - due any day now, so i felt pretty great that it was a surprise when she opened the present. i still promise to post photos, later this year, of it being spit up on, or cuddled up on, depending on the day.
then my sister s, my cousins and i went out to dinner to celebrate my birthday, early, as monday is the official day. i really am not thinking much about it since my sister w is due that day and i am much more excited to have a niece than a 44th birthday. dinner was good, and the opening of a couple of presents at the table gave away the fact that i was celebrating... lucky for me the waiter encouraged everyone in the restaurant to sing me happy birthday... i got a free desert - tiramisu - and a candle so it wasn't a total bust. but it reminded me of the most humiliating and horrifying 12th birthday at farrell's in portland - the one near the lloyd center - when all ten thousand people in the restaurant sang happy birthday at the top of their lungs while i stood there - yes, i had to stand - holding the dish of ice cream with an upside down cone made to resemble a clown. i crawled into myself that day in embarrassment and still haven't resurfaced. tonight wasn't as bad because we were drinking wine.
i am playing golf tomorrow with sister s. i have to post this now so i can go sit for while - or lie in bed - and concentrate on playing well - i am hoping for a chance in hell of breaking 100 and beating s in the same day. see, i think it would only be fair, me turning 44 and all. right? and really, in my head i play better than my scores indicate. i hope real life catches up to me soon.... very soon.
i have long suspected that when the computer/printer says that my ink cartridge is low, or out of ink, that it is a lie. a lie in order to get me to buy more cartridges of ink. expensive cartridges of ink. i mean, i spend $23 on the printer, and $123 every time i run out of ink... i try to keep them in the printer as long as i can and until they don't actually print readable images, but, as you can see here.... there is usually some ink left in those 'empty', and expensive, cartridges. this little problem is the result of my cleaning up the guest room, which also doubles as the hub of all things blog and if i am completely honest, on-line games too...
i tossed said cartridges into a paper bag and then forgot there was anything more innocuous than pieces of non-recyclables in there, then put the bag on the bed to keep the dog out of it -he likes to eat everything. it's been sitting on the bed for two weeks? maybe a bit longer.... this morning when i was tidying, so my mom could sleep here tonight, i found this big dark reminder of my failures at housekeeping. and was reminded - again - of how god damned much i spend in ink, and now bedding.
before you comment and tell me the best way to rid myself of inkjet ink, i have to say that i am already washing the duvet cover, the duvet, and the sheets. i ran water through everything and then scrubbed the stain with powdered oxiclean. when you wet that stuff and move it around... it gets hot! it is pretty nifty. so, if your hands are cold, get some oxiclean! i will post later whether you should get it if you have soaked through several layers of bedding with ink and are hoping to remove those stains...i am pretty sure, but not certain yet, that i am staining the whole shebang as a write this.
•update - seems the red ink is somewhat permanent... dammit•
ok... on to more pretty things... i am photographing the rest of the embroidered bags i have made. here is a sneak peek at one that i have photo'd - more to come.... look for them here.
... i am a little tired today ... it will take too long to photograph a craft ... and the light isn't very good this morning anyway ... because i had this in the computer ... and it is pretty ... and i need to get to the pit studio! - ok, downstairs ... and i want to post something so i have a reason to check the computer every third minute
this is a lorquin's admiral butterfly that i saw on whidbey island, washington a couple of years ago. i was sitting on the front deck of a nice little cabin overlooking puget sound. a really wonderful spot.. right, mary and bob?
step by step instructions for covering a metal button....
i have also made a little slide show of the tutorial. get there by cutting and pasting this link...