Saturday, May 31, 2008

Simple. Sculpted. Satisfaction.



Simple.
Sculpted.
Satisfaction.


It's Saturday. Kids are home. Cousins are coming. Summer morning after storms. Oxy tank is empty. Won't torch today. This is my sculpting fix for the day.

She's a good fix, too. I really like how the minimal lines suggest a figure so alive. Sometimes, I can hit just the right mark on the "less is more" continuum. For me, she is there. Everyone has their own sensibilities, of course. Some may look at her and say, "Why no head?" or "What happened to the arms?" I look at her and think, "Femininity. Simplicity."

The subjectivity involved in your reactions to any particular piece of art is another reason I love to hear from people who've bought one of my sculptures. I don't want you to buy something that doesn't speak to you. Even during a slow stretch, even though I may be thinking about the selling part of this business since that is reality, what truly makes my soul satisfied is to hear someone say, "That one speaks to me. Send her home." There is no better feeling for an artist.

Yes, I call myself an artist. That's another subjective term, but "artist" is what I feel when I create a satisfying sculpture. You can't just be an artist when things go your way, though. You have to be an artist all the time, through the ugly and the so-so and the what-the-hell-is-that's. It satisfies my soul, and that deep connection is what makes it art for me.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Strawberry Dessert for Breakfast


I ate strawberries all day long yesterday. Mmmmmmmmmm, strawberry season has begun here in the flatlands. I had been anticipating it since Kate's birthday on May 17th. Most years, we've had fresh strawberries from the farm down the road to eat with Kate's birthday cake.

It may be hard to believe, considering the sugar sparkling on the berries and cereal in the picture, but we eat our strawberries plain and unadorned most of the time. That's why I say I'm having strawberry dessert for breakfast-- Rice Chex and lots of juicy strawberries liberally sprinkled with sugar.

Eating healthy is a continual battle around here, but fruit is never a burden to consume. James would live on apples, strawberries, grapes, bananas, and watermelon if possible. Kate isn't too crazy about bananas. Oh, and peaches! Oh my goodness, fresh peaches from the orchard are another favorite.

I really don't know where I'm trying to go with this train of thought. Mostly, I'm trying to get my brain and tummy into the fresh food and cook it yourself mode. Talking about all this good stuff helps crowd out thoughts of frozen pizza (call me weird, but I love it as much as hand-tossed pie from a pizzaria) and all the other packaged junk that we seem to crave (oy vey, crave...there goes the White Castle alarm!). We had chicken and broccoli last night, and I'm thinking about roasted red bell pepper for lunch (wish I'd gotten some asparagus at the store yesterday, too).

So, there ya go. Food, food, food. Better get on to my to-do list instead of drooling over food!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Gimme Faded Jeans and T-shirts


I say:
I agree. Jeans, t-shirt, slip-on sandals. Keys in my pocket, and I am ready to go. Much to the chagrin of most grownups I know, I prefer my jeans very faded, and they aren't broken in right until they have at least one hole in the knee. Some people think about their health, some people think about their looks, this person thinks a big incentive for finally starting to exercise again is that I want to fit back into some of those holey Levi's. . . yeah, you know what, I really want to be wearing some of my favs again. Yes, I want to be healthy again and end my love affair with junk food, but the Levi's are such a tangible motivator. Yikes, I can't believe I told you that, and I can't believe I'll actually do it, but sometimes it takes a lot of false starts before you really get in gear.

Here's another thing I say:
Go out and have a wonderful day, no matter what you're doing. . .find something wonderful about it, treasure some little detail, laugh at the preposterous because there's no way to fix stupid, just have a sunny day :)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

SkinnyDipping...Didja ever??


Okay, I admit it, I have had my daredevil moments but have never been skinnydipping. Heaven only knows what gods were smiling down on me the day I had to swim across a pool to be eligible to get my scuba diving license. I can swim so-so with fins on my feet, but I'm too chicken to practice anything else except floating on my back.

Yeah, you're right, I'm also a little too self-conscious to really want to go swimming naked in broad daylight (even if I could wear my fins). From what I've been hearing, though, skinnydipping is one of those experiences that shouldn't be missed. Do you think it would be considered poor etiquette to ask the other skinnydippers to wear blindfolds?
You know what? I haven't even ever stolen clothes from skinnydippers, just to watch the ensuing chaos if any of them are really on the shy side like I am. Heehee, now that would have to be some fun, too. Not to really steal the clothes, just maybe pick them up and hide them in a slightly different place. . .

So, what the heck, why don't we just dive into another topic here? First, if ya click on any of the pictures, it'll take ya to my Etsy shop where the SkinnyDippers are for sale. . . a girl has to do a little marketing every now and again ;)

Aha, now to the 'nother topic. Shall we discuss my sister's blind date? Nah, that would be kind of rude, except I'm sure she's expecting me to at least bring it up here in a roundabout way. Let me just say, Soupie, that I heard that song with the lyrics "there might be a little dust on the bottle" this afternoon and I thought about ya. . .no, no, not you, him! I still want to know what color his eyes are ;)

Well, that's about it for this afternoon. Got lots of laundry to haul out of the trunk and start washing, got a small basket of junk to put in the studio, got a great big roll of foam wrap to put away (thanks, Mari!), got a get back into schoolnight mode for two more nights this week (and a few next week), and got to convince Moochie the nervous cat that we really are her family and she can come let us pet her again even though we've been gone for what must seem to her a decade!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Greer Kids Playing Pranks? Nah, Never!


What is that you see? That would be our cousin Patrick (aka Bubba) and my father taking the hinges off my brother's bedroom door yesterday. Was my brother locked out and not able to open the door himself? Nah. Was my brother hiding out from the crowd, which included various cousins and cousin's kids and niece and nephew, etc. Bubba and Pop decided to help the little kids get Uncle Bubby to come back out to play. Of course, taking the hinges off the door while Bub was inside is just a little joke on the Grand Greer Scale of Pranks ;)

Most pranks involve water guns, or just plain buckets of water. We've had some great water fights, probably none of our compare with the ones Pop and Uncle Major used to have on the jobs they worked together, but we try :)

Well, sitting here in Panera, with squirming kids and a Grandma to go meet at the mall in a few minutes, so this is a short one. Hope your week is starting out well!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

A Trip to the Cemetery for Memorial Day

Maybe it's a southern thing, maybe it's a country thing, I don't know. I just know that some people don't understand visiting cemeteries. My husband has always been dismayed to hear our children talk matter of factly about cemeteries and people who have passed on from this life, and I'm pretty sure he isn't the only person who feels that way. He was born and raised in town, though, not in the country and not in the south. I guess I'm telling you this at the beginning of this entry because I don't want to offend any one either way. . . I just find a lot to think about when it comes to the different ways we all approach life and death. Today, I'm gonna talk about the country way.

The country way of looking at death is simple-- death is a part of life. If you believe in God, then I suppose you can also say that life is a part of death. We don't have to talk about religion, though. That's another one of those things that really depends on how you were raised and what you've experienced in life. Death isn't a scary or hushed occurrence for a country kid. So it really isn't surprising to find that cemeteries aren't scary places for most country people, or even those of us who've grown up and moved away from real deep country.

Cemeteries are places where you can look at old headstones and marvel at the ornate decorations. It's always interesting to wander along the rows of a cemetery and find family trees appearing right before your eyes. Cemeteries are places where you can stand still for a moment and feel the connection with past generations. Cemeteries are a place for comfort, not in a wailing and sad way, but comfort in the form of sharing stories about the people we've known and loved. They bring comfort in that they show you time marches on but people are not forgotten.


Samuel Abraham and Mary Josephine were my mom's father's parents. My great-grandparents had a passel of kids, so many that I can never remember all of their names in order to count them. Willie, Arziney, Delphie, Berthie, and Rosie were some of the sisters. The youngest three children were Samuel Lee (my Granddaddy), Myrtle, and Bethel. My great-grandparents owned a mill, and they donated the ground for the cemetery. I wish I knew more about them.

See the two tree stumps in this picture? Those mark the grave of one of Samuel Abraham and Mary Josephine's daughters.


Samuel Lee and Rosa Mae Duncan, my mom's parents, are buried beneath the two stones on the left. The grave with the flag flying beside it belongs to my Uncle Grover, an Army veteran. You know, I used to always hear people say to not walk on the side of the headstones where the bodies are buried. I can't remember where I learned that, but I know that in these little cemeteries we walk right up to the headstones and read and talk about the person who lies beneath. It's funny, as we were getting out of the car this morning, my mom was telling James and Kate that her daddy would've thought the world of them if he had lived to meet them. Somehow, I think it would please Granddaddy to know those kids were standing above him, listening to his daughter tell them about her father.

It was a good day.

Grandma's Roses


Undeniably, my very favorite roses, ever, are the old fashioned purple ones that came from my Grandma's sideyard and have grown beyond belief in my mother's garden. This is the picture I took from the upstairs "doghouse" (the name of the little sun room/hangout over the new garage is another story) at my mom and dad's. That bunch of rose bushes is like this every summer, so full and luscious and sweet-scented. I wish I knew how to make you an online scratch 'n sniff photo so you could smell them, too.

Today, we are going to the cemetery where my mom's parents are buried, and we are taking flowers that Grandma and Katie just picked. There are irises galore blooming right now, and I imagine they also picked some of these roses.

I've got stories about my grandparents, stories about my mom taking us down the backroads where she grew up (not the mountains, but most definitely the boonies), stories about my cousins and uncles and aunts. . . but right now I must get my clothes on or I'll be making the ride in my pajamas! Oh, and I would rather get caught wearing my p.j.'s than miss out on this ride and all the memories that will be talked about today!


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Hi, Ya'll. . . Indiana Jones? or Kentucky Jones?

Hi, Ya'll!

Just a quick Wildcat blue hello :)

Kids are busy playing on the swingset, digging thru the toy boxes, petting the rabbit (aka Cat Chow, don't ask), petting the cat and dogs, climbing the rock piles, and digging in said rock piles while looking for treasure.

James and Nate the Great left Kate behind a few times this afternoon. The boys were busy playing Indiana Jones. Each of them got a shovel, and the marched off to one of the rock piles in search of adventure. Dr. Jones (Nate) and Young Luke Skywalker (hey, they couldn't both play the Indiana Jones role) found adventure, all right. They found a toad:
James: "Dude, catch it!"
Nathan: "No, man, you catch it!"
James: "Okay, I'll get a bucket to put him in."
Nathan: "All right, then, and I'll guard him with the shovel."

The boys survived, with a little assistance from Grandma and Kate. The toad survived. Nate the Great and Kate both caught bugs for the toad. James decided it was time to let the toad go free, so Kate carried the bucket back to the rock pile and tipped it over.

Yep, lots of excitement to be found when you're just hanging around at Grandma and Granddaddy's house :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Thank You, Lea Zinke!


Well, Lea, it felt a bit like Christmas morning when I got home from the post office. Thank you so much for the blues and greens!! The kids will be thrilled with the puppy dogs and kitty cats you sent along for them, too! They are really into cats and dogs this year. They spend a lot of time petting the real cat Moochie, playing with their Webkinz cats and dogs and other critters, and point out every dog or cat we see while driving to school or to town.

Thank You!

And now, before I try to squeeze in some torching (I'm trying yours again today, M) to have some sculptures to put in my Etsy shop this weekend, I have to give you some links so you can meet Lea, too. She is such a sweet person (and her beads are AMAZING)!

Lea's Biography page on www.leazinke.com

Gallery page on www.leazinke.com


Article in Bead and Button (ya gotta see these pics!)



Okay, I gotta get busy. Sorry to make it so short today, but if I wanna play during the long holiday weekend, then I gots ta get some work done now :)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Kindergarten Graduation and 1st Grade Awards :)


Kindergarten Graduation and Academic Awards Night at Irvington Grade School, whatta night! It was fun watching the kindergarten class try to keep their caps on their heads, for one thing! I was also using the video camera, and I caught at least three caps falling off heads and the accompanying panic and recovery. The kindergarten class also sang a few songs for us and did a chant all about learning at Irvington Grade School. Mrs. Bergen has taught them so much this year, and they beamed when she handed out their awards! I will miss seeing her every morning next year. As a matter of fact, I think maybe she should do 1st or 2nd grade next year so one of my kids can be in her class.
James and the other first graders received their academic awards next. They were so cute, trying to be cool and act like big kids! They are big kids when it comes to their schoolwork, though. Wow! They've learned so much this year. Mrs. Bradham might be "100% serious," but it's 100% serious about learning :) Hmm, I think maybe Katie and James should get to switch off teachers next year. Yeah, just my personal wish, but I think it would be great for both of my kiddos if Kate has Mrs. Bradham for 1st grade and James could have Mrs. Kathy Kindergarten Bergen for 2nd grade. . .


P.S. Did you ever try to get more than one kid to smile nicely at the camera at the same time?? Why is this not possible? I like the cute and funny faces, too, but why can't they both do the same kind of face for a single picture?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Blast from the (relatively speaking) Past


  • dangit, the laptop is hibernating without my permission. honestly, who can really tell me these machines don't have a mind of their own??
  • Katie's kindergarten graduation tonight
  • oh, and had to grab an old picture from the desktop since the laptop won't wake up
  • need a new mouse for this dinosaur.
  • just added that to the list of things to do today
  • James has his own plan for what to do after graduation tonight. He is convinced we'll have time to go to bargain night at the movies after Kate graduates. We'll see how that works out.
  • argh! not enough coffee yet.
  • okay, admitted, I drink too much Diet Coke instead of water, but the coffee I can limit myself to two cups each day. . . one in the morning, one in the afternoon
  • is it the afternoon yet??
  • hope your day starts out smoothly and drives along pleasantly!
  • well, the only blast from the past I included so far was a bead sculpture from last spring, a very pretty one but maybe i should go get you another pic?
  • oh, my, i think that other pic must be from a birthday last May...time flies
  • gotta go, Moe! See ya later, 'gators!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Heart of the Matter

For anyone who has been watching my glass creations for a long time, you might remember that I love stringer work (decorating the glass by melting in very thin rods of glass in lines, swirls, even writing words) almost as much as sculpting molten glass.

Lately, the sculpting has taken the form of pure form, if that makes any sense, and adding doodads or swirls or words seems to take away from the pure form. Ah, but hard as I'm trying lately to really distill my pieces down to the nitty gritty, sometimes the stringer bug bites me hard. Not hard enough to make me stop sculpting these figures and makes stringer beads all day, but hard enough to get my attention. Instead of swatting away the stringer "bug," I let loose with an upward cascade (is it possible for a cascade to fall upward?) of stringer on this lady's leg.

I think if you look near the top of the stringer scrolls, close to the center of her torso, you might see why I'm calling her "Heart of the Matter". . . a subtle curve to the left, met by another subtle curve to the right, and there's a heart.

The Heart of the Matter is that you have to follow your heart. Follow your heart in little matters like deciding whether or not to add embellishment to a classic torso, because it's only glass and life is too short to not follow your heart when there is nothing to be lost and no one to be hurt if you do it. Follow your heart in bigger matters like deciding whether or not to let yourself be an artist, because it's only time and life is too short to not follow your heart when there is nothing to be lost, no one to be hurt, and everything to be gained if you do it.

P.S. Following your heart just might be a good policy for lots of things in life, don't ya think? Let your heart whisper to you today.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Hodge Podge of Sunday Morning Pictures


Hmmm, well I did tell you it's a hodge podge of pictures, didn't I? I just wrote captions for a bunch of them, then added more. . . except the two I added ended up here at the top. Oh, well, better just go ahead and post it like it is. It's one of those beautiful, sunny Sunday mornings when time seems to stand still, so I better go enjoy it! Hope you're having a fun day, too!


^^^The newest members of our WebKinz family had to go on a scavenger hunt this morning. James thought they needed to be carried in a special basket. James also decided that the watch Grandma and Granddaddy sent him is really a time machine for the WebKinz, so they've been busy traveling this morning!

^^^ Those are the plaid shorts Grandma got Katie last year.^^^


^^^This is the striped t-shirt I think I got Katie for her birthday, two or three years ago!^^^




You know what's coming, don't you??
Yep, she's wearing them together this morning!

James and the Moocher don't seem to mind Kate's out-there fashion sense, though :)
I imagine if my mother sees this, she will have to remind me of some of the combinations I insisted on wearing when I was about that age! I know there are pictures of me in a black and white vertically striped jumper with a poodle on it, worn over a pastel horizontally striped long sleeve shirt. Lovely combo, that one! Let's see, the purple plaid Toughskins jeans with the red/white/blue print shirt, another lovely combo. Oh, yeah, and don't forget the patchwork print long skirt with one of those striped shirts, neither of which had subtle color combos...lovely sense of style. Kate mixes "don'ts" much better than I ever did.


^^^The grape-scented irises are blooming! I'm sure they have an official name, but I think they smell like grape kool-aid or grape candy. The kids just realized the same thing this morning. Let me see if I can add the picture of them...




Saturday, May 17, 2008

Shhh..."Stolen" Flowers from JimBob's Yard


JimBob bought the house next to my late mother-in-law's house. I think the plan is to eventually fix it up and turn it into a rental, but in the meantime I sure hate to see the flowers going to waste in the yard. I thought I'd better liberate just one small branch of these lovely blooms!

Overgrown gardens around old houses are just the best, aren't they? Maybe it's because I don't have a green thumb, but I adore overflowing shrubs and out of control vines and volunteer patches of flowers that spring up here and there in a yard.

Makes me want to just walk up to the porch and invite myself to sit in the swing for a while and watch the world go by. Don't worry, though. I really don't go around sitting on stranger's front porches, invitation or not :)

Oh, and I don't pick flowers uninvited unless I'm sneaking a bouquet from my mother's plentiful garden or borrowing JimBob's unappreciated flowers like I did these.

Here's to sunny, lazy, summertime Saturday afternoons!
Hope yours is a fine one!

Friday, May 16, 2008

My Almost Birthday Girl and "Her" Cat


Today is my last day of having a five year old. Tomorrow is my first day of having two six year olds. That will last until James gleefully turns seven in June and is no longer the same age as Katie. . .until next year. The little boy is not amused by the fact that he is the same age as his little sister for one month each year. Of course, being the "little" one, Kate is as gleeful about her age for that month as James is when the month finally ends!

So, my baby will be six tomorrow. Those pale blue eyes, those freckles, that attitude! When she was four, I'd describe her as four going on forty. Five going on fifty, that's been the saying this year. I don't know if she's self-confident and bossy and headstrong enough to warrant six going on sixty, but you never know ;) I think she'll either be President someday or a Marine drill sergeant! Go, Katie!

Katie and the cat, now that's a story that shows just how powerful the girl's loving attitude is. Katie goes at everything full force. When she loves you, she loves you fiercely. . . and that's a good thing. The cat seems to know this. Moochie lets Katie pick her up and hold her like a baby doll. If you know cats, you know they don't "let" you do anything they don't want to do. Mooch may not be too fond of being carried upside down, but she lets Katie carry her. In fact, she looks for Katie, chooses Katie over the rest of us, and has apparently decided to merely tolerate the rest of us. Mooch lets Katie carry her across the great big wading puddles that have hung around the back yard all during this wet spring. She willingly lets Kate stand her on her back paws while "dancing" her front paws.

Good grief, and now I've lost my train of thought. I was going to wish my shadow a Happy Birthday and talk about all the things I love about her. . .but I think you get the idea :)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Any Tips on Bigger Torches?Know Someone with a Used One for Sale?



I'm drooling over bigger torches, I really am. These figures I've been doing are stretching my abilities and my torch. It's true, though, that if I just give it some more practice time, my Betta torch will probably suffice. . .maybe that stimulus check is burning a hole in my pocket, after all?

Anyway, it never hurts to ask around and see what other people think about equipment they've tried! Any good stories, any bad stories, any wish-I-woulda-known stories? Please, leave some comments for all of us to share :)

Gotta get moving. Gotta quick trip to Fairview Heights and then right back to school for the kiddos. . .although we might have to grab some breakfast from the St. Louis Bread Co. while we're over there.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Dream. . . Let Yourself Dream


Dream.
Dream big, dream small,
dream barely there at all,
but
Dream. . .

Let yourself dream.




Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Don't Argue with Mother Nature...


If Mother Nature wants you to turn that cool piece of branch upside down, then maybe you ought to do it. . . Turns out, she was right about this piece of branch. I thought it looked good the other way, but when I turned it "upside down" I discovered that it sets firmly on the cut off pieces. In fact, I kinda like the way Mother Nature balances herself atop her fallen log, leaning back just a tad, as if she were walking across a tree that had fallen across a creek. If you've ever done that yourself, you know the feeling of confidence that will take you to the other side of the creek with nary a drop of water touching your dry feet. It isn't until you've experienced the wobble that did end with you in the creek that you realize the zen-like feeling of the successful tread!

P.S. She's in my Etsy shop, where I'm starting The Sculpture Project. Now, one of my to-do's this week is to write more about this sculpture project, but here's the gist of it: 1.) gas and bread and milk are eating up lots of $ for lots of people here lately but 2.) I don't think that should mean we shouldn't be able to treat ourselves to art that speaks to us and 3.) I just want to be able to keep on sculpting because I really feel like this is what I'm meant to be doing (well, the m-o-m role, too, but that goes without saying) sooooooooo 4.) I figure if you can buy a sculpture for say $30 and I can keep sculpting because you did, then it's a Win-Win situation :)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Winged Protectress of the Garden


Now, don't you think she's just perfect for someone like me? I sure need a Protectress of the Garden, that's for sure! My own daughter even told her kindergarten teacher that the flower she was sending home for a Mother's Day present would have a better chance if it went to Grandma's! Heehee, I am now beyond being embarrassed by such a statement, simply because I know that it is all too true!

I would, however, like to point out that the flower in the bottom corner of this picture is the one James brought home last Thursday, and it hasn't died yet! Notice, also, please, that the peas are growing and even getting ready to bloom! Of course, the lettuce is strangling itself out because I'm afraid I'll thin out too much of it if I start...and there's barely enough there so far for a salad from the thinnings, so I keep waiting "just another day or two".

You know what, though? My bacon is almost done, and while some bread is toasting, I could go outside and thin out some of that lettuce, wash it, and have a nice BLnoT sandwich. . .

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day to My Mom...aka James and Katie's Grandma






My mom sent me a Mother's Day card that says on the inside, "I'm glad we get to be moms together." I'm glad, too. My mom is the best! That's all, just the best! I love you, Mother, and I hope you have a wonderful day.

The video is from the kiddos. They wanted to make you a poster and a video. I'm not sure about the "Grandmas need their nutrition" quote on there...that's Kate's, I just spelled words for her. I think she wanted to make sure you eat something you like on Mother's Day? Who knows? I do know that the I Love You was the first decoration she put on the poster!
Alright, I've been waiting way too long for the video to load. Be back soon with another try!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Play Ball! Fun on a String!



Here's your Friday fun, just a little early...that is, if the video loads this time, then you'll get tomorrow's post today :) Grandma sent the kiddos another goodie package, and one of the toys was a bouncy ball on an extra long string with a velcro wristband. You toss the ball, then you catch it when it bounces back towards you.

Heehee, you catch it if you practice a bunch of times first! See, James and I are kind of clutzy, and we couldn't catch it at first (or second, or third, or fourths, you get the idea). No surprise there. Ah, but Kate, the natural born jock of the family, couldn't catch it either! We sure had a lot of fun trying, though, as you can probably tell from all the giggles and squeals!

Hugging Grandma


Katie looked at this and promptly said to James, "Mom made you and me hugging Grandma!" Now, I told her that it was a grandma, not a mom, but she knew right away what I did. They do love them some Grandma!

The question is, what else will I get my mom for Mother's Day?? She's already ordered and put out enough additional flower bulbs that their yard could be renamed "Holland". She and Vivian went to the nursery at White Mills the other day to pick up her elephant ears. Then she and Geraldine went back on their annual flower buying trek. Oh, I am not complaining, her flowers are a beautiful sight for the eyes all summer long. . . what I'm complaining about is that now what flowers could I possibly get for her Mother's Day present (or for Pop's Father's Day present because when you can't think of what to get him, he's always happy to have you just get Mother more flowers).

Another gardening or country living magazine? Nah, got most of those. Another t-shirt or pair of shoes? Nah, she pretty much finds what she wants and feels comfortable wearing. Already bought her big bags of birdfeed for Easter. She'd usually rather cook on the grill instead of go out to eat. She's endured plenty of "we've got to get this for Mommy because we really want one" presents-- a football for Christmas one year is the one that stands out in my mind!

Hmmm, better think of something!
Hope you have a fun day today!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Gosh, It's a Gosling. . .and I Think I Need a Camera with More Zoom Power!



See what I saw this morning before the thunder and lightning and rain decided to bombard us? Anyone who lives around here has seen Canadian geese aplenty, but I've never seen a gosling with them! I started out taking pictures from afar, and then decided I'd just get as close as they'd let me until a.) they flew away, b.) my batteries ran out, or c.) it was time to get the kids up for school. Oh, I tried to wake up the munchkins, but Kate just pulled the covers back over her head. James was happily reassured that Daddy was still home since it's vacation for him, then he glanced at the pantsie-lou's I laid out for him and promptly went back to sleep. So, it was just me, the cat, and the geese! You can hear all the other birds in the video clip, as well as the wind making that annoying digital "whooof" sound when it hits the camera, but you can't hear the big splashes from the frogs as they jump off the bank and into the water. Thankfully, I did not see the snake the kids saw the other day, or you'd hear me screaming...can't help it. Hope you enjoy the pics and the bumpy movie-- I kept walking closer, and they tolerated it, so I sure couldn't just stand still from a distance :)

P.S. Blogger doesn't seem to want to download the video right now. I'll be back later and try again. It's bumpy, but it is kinda neat!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Obsessed with Sculpting Glass...



. . .yep, gotta sculpt, gotta sculpt something big, gotta sculpt something graceful, gotta sculpt, gotta sculpt, gotta sculpt.

Can't stop sculpting, can't stop fixing peanut butter sandwiches or fixing owies or checking homework or checking to make sure some little person hasn't ridden off too far on a bicycle. . .

Can't stop picking up bread and staples at Wally-world, can't stop going to the real grocery for strawberries and apples and meat, and I believe the library police might be close to shredding my card if I don't turn in my books reeeeeeeeeeal soon. . .

Can't torch very well while doing all the above, so the hours when the kids are at school seem pitifully short some days. . .

And you are the one who's getting slighted these past few days, you're the one who's getting these quickie posts to read because I'm not organized and/or efficient enough to fit it all into the hours of the day gracefully. . .

Thank you for sticking with me even when the reading pickings are slim :)

Oh, darnit, that's another thing I oughtta be fitting into the picture-- slimming down and getting healthier by exercising. You'd think "running to town" and "doing a quick clean up of the kitchen" would count for something along those lines, wouldn't ya??

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Magical Faery Gifts for You


I showed Katie this faery last night, and both of the boys even turned toward her and said, "Ooooh, that's pretty!" How's that for magical?

She's $25 deal number twenty-three or twenty-four (lost count again!) in my Etsy shop.



I think that's going to have to be my very short message to you this morning, since every one should be waking up very soon. The kids "sold" (i.e. mom and dad bought) tickets to a breakfast buffet to help raise money for their Accelerated Reading program at school, and we're heading to Applebee's with our tickets very shortly. James informed me last night that he intends to eat 7, yes seven!, pancakes this morning!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Orange Ya Glad It's Friday??


Look! I made a bead!

Okay, so what's so special about that, seeing as how I am a lampworker after all?

Well, I gotta tell ya that I may be the only lampworker on the face of the earth who never practiced making those 100 spacers or perfected a simple round bead. I suck at it. I discovered sculpting, my beads grew and grew larger until they became sculptures, and I rarely try to make a wearable piece any more. . .

One of the rules of marketing for an artist is to always wear a piece of your work if at all possible, so I try to keep one or two wearable overgrown beads to wear. Yesterday, I sold my favorite one, and I figured it was time to make a new one. That's it in the picture, and I gotta tell ya I am pleased with it! It's only about an inch long, but it sure packs a nice bit of orange-y pizazz.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

HotDiggityDamnDog! New Tool!




  1. SCORE!!
  2. Yes, Pop and Bubby, I will put the plastic guards on it.
  3. Yes, I did use it to grind the ends of 3 mandrels.
  4. No, I didn't forget to wear glasses.
  5. Yes, I will find it a sturdier place where it can be fastened down.
  6. HOTDIGGITYDAMNDOG! I can grind mandrels whenever I need to without having to be at my mom and dad's or having to beg for the coveted garage key so I can get inside the DH's shop!
  7. Well, lots of things we don't agree on, it's true, but I can understand why he won't just give me a key to his auto shop-- I am a huge moocher! Just ask Pop or Bubby :)
  8. Doesn't matter now, because I scored a brand new grinder that's never been out of the box, just for asking Ricky if I could borrow the key to his garage and use the grinder.
  9. Nope, he didn't really want to let me have the key.
  10. Yes, he does finally understand that I am trying to make a business out of this "glass obsession", so he wavered slightly.
  11. Then, he remembered there was an extra grinder in his shop.
  12. Nope, doesn't take much to make me happy :)
Hehheh, now that I've got a grinder, wonder what other tools I can request for my Mother's Day present? Hmmmmmmmmm...

Okay, gotta run. Been running here and there doing errands this morning, now I gotta take a pic or two and then do some torching with my nice, newly ground mandrels!

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