Thursday, April 30, 2015

A Book for Alex

I’m making progress on Alex’s book, which I’m pretty sure he has outgrown, but hey, that’s what happens when it takes three years to complete a project.

I am hoping to finish the illustrating this week, but I still haven’t figured out how I am going to do the binding…

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Sewing for Abe Lincoln

My nephew is going to be Abe Lincoln for a school project.  Things like this make me glad I can sew....

I even made three different sizes, and somewhat to my surprise it was the longest one that worked.

The white shirt hadn't been bough yet, but you can see the whole thing is coming together.  

Here's a better look at the hat, which is worth looking at:

The event is sort of like a science fair, only with presidents.  It's May 7, and I'm hoping to surprise him and go since I'll be in Omaha doing voice acting stuff.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Garden Irony

The leeks we have tender nourished under grow lights for two months are pathetic:

The lettuce we didn't even plant?  Thriving:

Monday, April 27, 2015

Garden Update

We rarely use our backyard.

Belovedest is not particularly fond of mowing.

I didn’t want it to look like a blah brown rectangle.


I wanted to figure it out on graph paper.  He wanted to move bricks around.  Seriously?  
We moved bricks around....

We’re so pleased with the layout that we disputing whose idea it was!  (HINT: mine.)

My husband made a compost sifter this past weekend.  (The compost was still too wet from the previous day’s rain to really use it, but we had to try it out…)

Despite most of the “soil” being mud, it still turned this:

Into this:
The soil-via-compost stands out clearly against the crappy clay that was under all the grass:

Tonight hopefully stuff will be dry enough to plant.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Sunday Thoughts: Wanting to Be God

My friend: I'm not sure what the purpose of winning the lottery would be. Once I have a boat, motorcycle, and a fishing pole I'm not sure what else I would need. I have that already.

Me: What I want is freedom. I don't care about stuff. I want to be able to work or not work, just as I choose. I want to have time to spend exactly as I please – so much time that it's no longer precious. So much time I could even waste it, let it slip through my fingers like sand on a beach. And I don't want to be dependent on other people for my security, like needing to have a job.

My friend: So you want to be God.

Me: (Laughing) I am a heretic, I see!

My friend: No. It is what we all want.

Then I think he said something about trust….

Saturday, April 25, 2015


Garden dreaming... and maybe shopping.  It's too wet to do anything else.

Friday, April 24, 2015

A Future Project

This pretty little cottage from Somerset Studio magazine is just cardboard—the kind from the back of the artist’s drawing pad. 

It’s got me thinking that I might want to make bunches of these (and flowers and butterflies!) and then stick them up all around the top of the bathroom walls like a wallpaper border, only much, much cooler.

I’m excited to have thought of another place to put art, as I’m always afraid we’re going to run out of room on the walls…

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Lamb... the Other Meat

For Easter I, the Magician, decided that we should eat something special.  So I searched around town for some lamb.  Unfortunately all of the local farmers that were advertised somewhere online as having lamb for sale either didn't have active websites anymore or didn't list lamb as a product.

I finally did find a leg of lamb at Whole Foods!...

...BUT... wowsers, at what cost!  Nevertheless, we didn't want the price to spoil the special meal, so the butcher wrapped it up and home we went.

I followed a Rosemary/Garlic/Lemon recipe (but did not make the sauce on the page).  It didn't take all that long to pre and pre-cooked it looked awsome:

By-the-way... did I mention that one leg of this beast ran $60!!!...  Imagine, with all four legs this lamb would be worth $240 at a minimum... 

A few hours later it came out quite lovely.  And the smell was fantastic!

It still came out a bit pink though.   Twas delicious nonetheless:

We ended up having several meals worth of meat.  In the end I don't know if we'd ever spend that kind of money again for meat.  It was great - but in the end it was a consumable that was gone in a week.  Maybe later this year I'll go hunt some rabbits and freeze them for next Easter!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


"I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing that I wanted to do."
-- Georgia O'Keefe

Wow.  If this quote was even mostly true than she was a pretty amazing woman.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Alex's First Communion

Today congratulations go out to my nephew and godson Alex who made his First Communion!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Weekly Round-Up

It seems like it's been a while.....

But good things have been happening!

Dad and I, plus Uncle Pat, played in the woodshop:

What is it?  Stay tuned.....

While at my parents Mom and I measured space for a rug:

Belovedest and I planted potatoes on Easter:

First flowers from the garden!

And then--- oh joy! -- cooking with Auntie M of Four Eyes and a Stove!  Yes, you really can taste the difference when someone knows what she is doing is cooking!

Today I'm off to spend time with my nephew Alex in honor of his BIG DAY tomorrow: 
his First Communion!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Roller Skating Update

Roller skating is proving a bit hazardous to my heath:

We've discovered that YouTube videos on "How To Stop" are not proving as helpful as we would like.....

Ergo, we wised-up and got knee pads for me.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A Stylish "Did You Know?"

Did you know that the first issue of Vogue was published December 17, 1892?  
The magazine was a sort of society gazette published by and for the social elite.

For more about the history of this interesting and influential magazine, check out In Vogue: An Illustrated History of the World's Most Famous Fashion Magazine  by Norberto Angeletti and Alberto Oliva.

Monday, April 13, 2015

No Sugar....

I gave up sweets (mostly) for 6 weeks.

To be more precise, I gave up sweets from February 18 to April 5.  I had two lapses required by politeness, when I had a glass of lemonade and a glass of sparkling grape juice.  In the beginning, I polished off some yogurt and didn't buy any more.  (Yes, the flavored Yoplait ones.  Probably similar to eating a candy bar.)

But I did make it a total of 21 days, straight, there at the end.

So what happened?

I started at 113.6 pounds on February 18.  I ended at 109.8 pounds on April 5, although most of the time I was in the 110-112 range.  I worked out occasionally, and tried to at least walk every day for a minimum of 20 minutes.

I found that if I avoided sweets, I craved salty, greasy food.  I noticed that when I was relaxed and happy the scale seemed to dip quite regardless of what else I was or wasn't up to.

Then it was the Easter Octave.  (Octave=eight days.  Easter = Rejoice.  Ergo "Easter Octave" is Catholic for "Let's party for eight days.")  I ate whatever I jolly well felt like, including my favorites: Reese's Pieces and York Peppermint Patties.  My weight hung out in the 112s, until yesterday, the end of the octave, when it hit 113.8.

I found that if I ate lots of sweets, I got incredibly moody.  Really, really moody.  And I have had a tummy ache for most of the past week.

Conclusion: I'm not going to buy sweets or junk food.  If I'm offered it and it is luscious beyond description (i.e. Sr. Carmen's tiramisu), then I will eat it very slowly and enjoy it very much.  But sugar makes me ill and cranky in large quantities.  So other than high feasts (Easter, Christmas) and my birthday, and social obligations ("I made this for you because I know you love French Silk Pie") I'm going to cut back.  Way back.

How about you?  Have you given up sugar or gluten or ______?  What kind of difference did it made?

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Sunday Thoughts

When you have fear and do the thing anyway, you are holding on to the hand of God.
-- Edwene Gaines