Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Couldn't resist another Dove photo. This is one of my first "in the wild" bird photos I've taken with a good zoom. It was snowing (hence the white vertical blurs) and I was having a slight panic attack about water getting into the lens, etc.
I need to learn how to focus with a sharper lens/zoom. But on the whole, I like the composition and esp. the luck of the snow background. It really makes the shape of the dove pop.
Haven't thought of this in earnest...what am I grateful for? I am grateful for quiet moments highlighted so because my house is full of loud and flowing chatter of my little ones and pets. I am thankful for my family, near and far. I'm amazed that I have such a huge family, some were born into it, others added along the way. I am grateful for feeling rested after a good sleep and feeling the day is a new day; fresh and alive.
Hope you have a good Wednesday. Seize the day and make your quiet moments be highlighted by good works.
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Manheim, from Ghost Whisperer
I really like the new show "The Ghost Whisperer". I don't think the writing is 100% great but I love Camryn Manheim. Plus, I love the set. Just so dang gorgeous! Also, the opening credits of the show are beautiful collages...amazing.
One of Melinda
I put up some new paintings on eBay but have been working everyday on a new project. This project is basically my first Graphic Novel. I'm writing it all out first and am going to start illustrating once I've edited this 1st version at least two times. I think it's going to be interesting and might even be pretty good. We shall see. This is a story I've been wanting to write for some time...I'm up to 30 pages and I'm guessing a GN has to be at least 70 (at least what I've heard of). In a few words, this GN is based on historical events mixed with a touch of fiction.
After I get this one written/story boarded out, I would like to start on another story...local history. I've got more stories after this as well. These have been on my mind for a few years...so I've thought about it for awhile.
It's funny. Before the GN ever came to be, I had written a fantasy story in HS. I went pretty far into it too. I don't remember if I finished writing it but I do know I tried to illustrate it in college. I did about 4-5 illustrations and I should find them to see how they hold up through time. I might try to find this story, rework it and see if it's any good too. At the time, I thought my story was too long and my illustrations too serious to be a comic. I think it might have been good for a GN, now. Probably, a beginner's graphic novel, but at least a start. ;)
Another thing that happened, is my keyboard is up and running again. It was acting spotty and strange (missing keys, ignoring basic commands, etc). I vacuumed it and turned it upside down and it works! Who knew! lol! I guess that will teach me to clean more.
Since we didn't do the art stuff, I took the gals for a walk with Mr. Nelson. The girls had a great time climbing snow drifts and I was pleased as punch not to slip with my yak traks. If you don't have a pair, get one quick! These are great (you will still slip if there is a bunch of snow clogging the grips but this is cleared if you drag your feet...Jon showed me how to do this. And he doesn't even wear his yak traks!). Then we went to Lowes to rabbit fencing as the rabbits are nibbling my pear/peach trees. I forgot to put some up, so I'll have to do that tomorrow morning. The rabbits are like deer! I left a lot of food for them and can't figure why they'd betray me. At least they're cute.
Anyway, after this the gals got a little tired and we had some playing, eating, helping mom do laundry and looking at photo albums. Norrie conked out and Lydia followed.
There are few new places I want to submit my work to and I've got lots of new paintings sketched out. So, I feel very productive.
Well, I've got to go and turn off the Rescue Rangers that is playing on loop that Lydia just finished looking at. Very 80's music.
PS Mom if you're reading this, yes I got my Valentine goodies (2 days before Valentines too!) Thank you!! kiss, kiss, hug, hug from us all!
Sunday, February 25, 2007
Saturday, February 24, 2007
I found out last night my dearest friend, Caroline, had her baby on February 10th! I'm so, so happy and relieved everything went well! I was concerned as she had to have a c-section last time around and looks like this had to happen again. But she is well and fine! And her baby is too! I admit I was worried and was even afraid of calling her...I'm so grateful to know all is well. She has a beautiful baby girl. I know my mom is probably reading this, so get out the pink fabric and I'll get out the pink paint! haha :)
It's funny how we worry and worry...or at least I do. I've recently decided to hope for the best and trust my instincts a little more. Life is always going to have stresses and trying to find your center/calmness in the mad spinning can be so hard. But sometimes you have to spin a little to gain the center. Once that center is there, realizing you have to let go of what you are holding onto gives us our flexibility to cope in the chaos. All this from a new life; a new blessing.
Cherokee Prayer Blessing
May the Warm Winds of Heaven
Blow softly upon your house.
May the Great Spirit
Bless all who enter there.
May your Mocassins
Make happy tracks
in many snows,
and may the Rainbow
Always touch your shoulder.
Friday, February 23, 2007
My eyes are burning. I know it's because there is tons of salt all over the ground (as well as Calcium cloride)to reduce ice but really! If I got out by the time the day is ended my eyes are extremely dry and burning. I think this is also what causes my left eye to start twitching. I thought it was stress related (might be a tad of this) but seems more related to the wind/salt mixtures. I wish it would rain a little to wash some of this junk away but not likely...or at least for a little while.
Also, it's a longer freeze/snow we're having. Or a late one, actually. It's unusual and annoying as I remember about this time last year we were getting buds, warm days and I could walk outside with a light coat instead of the winter coat.
I didn't see any Junco's outside today but apparently, when they leave Spring will be on their heels. Very sweet and sad, really. They are such sweet little birds too; dark on the top and light gray/white on the bottom. At least the earth's rotation doesn't seem to be messed up as it's getting lighter in the evenings now. The gals are actually looking forward to Spring as are a lot of us, I'm guessing.
I'm desperate to visit a garden/greenhouse. I may have to take a trip to Lowe's just to see the green plants and blooms. When we lived in California we could just drive over to the Huntington Library or to the Los Angeles Arboretum. I love those places. The nearest (at least the few I found in researching) Arboretum seems to be 3 hours away. Incredible and terrible. I better not think about this too long or I'm going to get depressed.
I'm going to look through my batch of past photos and scan a few of our trips to various gardens in California. It's funny how there is SO much nature in PA but I think of the gardens in California as little oasis's during these below zero times. I guess with nature and hiking one is always vulnerable and the gardens seemed a tad safer. I'll keep researching for gardens closer to Altoona...
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Went down to the basement to do some laundry and upon coming back upstairs the gals had taken the smaller rat cage, put it under the computer table and opened it. Jane wandered about under the desk with Nelson loose. So, I was freaked. Good grief!
Then, Norrie decided to give Mr. Nelson some attention and cut off some of his fringe. He has a slight hole on the top of his head but it's hard to really see (I hope). argh!!
Then, Norrie tried to sneak into the bathroom but was shocked to see it already occupied by me! I have to say that was the funnier moments.
Just a day in the life of being a mom, I suppose. Let's just say pre-school is looking better and better.
I have to do a few more loads of laundry as it's becoming really terrible. It seems if I don't do at least one load a day, I'll be backed up with tons of laundry. And don't get me started on accidents from the girls.
It's a nice sunny day and the snow is actually melting a bit. Of course, once the temps drop at night everything freezes and becomes slick. I feel a bit more balanced about natue and hopeful about the future. I believe there is quite a bit of evidence about global warming and I feel very proactive about this. However, it's so depressing to hear all the reports coming from scientists, informed people and more. It's almost as if you want to say, to heck with it all, we are doomed. I think, if I were a scientist or a person with a lot of clout, I'd go a different direction. I'd say something like, yes we're doomed if we don't do anything, however we have the ability to do something...many things right now. I'd say this because I believe in hope and I know many, many people need hope in their lives. Yes, it might sound sappy but life is full of sappiness and this often creates positive change.
Anyway, that's what I'm feeling right now...carefully optimistic mixed with brief bits of hope. Kind of sounds like the ice cream we've got in the freezer (caramel sundae with the cone ice cream). I probably have a sunshine high...
Have a happy Wednesday! Over here it's great snowball weather! :)
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Monday, February 19, 2007
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Thursday, February 15, 2007
My entry for the Whipup challenge, recycled art. This is made of clothes hangers, material saved from the dump (freecycle) and bits and pieces of trades and saves.
Oddly, I was going to throw out the clothes hangers but had to bend them to fit the garbage can. As I bended the pieces, I thought this would be a great structure for a sculpture. The clicking began and I used wire, good old duct tape and electric tape to secure the skeleton of the unicorn. I wrapped the body in padding and the salvaged yellow material. The last bit of adding buttons came from a trade with a fellow flickr user, Nina (funoldnew) and I had saved the lace/cloth leaves from my wedding headpiece and the lace saved from discarded materials.
Monday, February 12, 2007
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Friday, February 09, 2007
Thursday, February 08, 2007
Otherwise, I've been getting a lot done, house wise. I actually straightened out the towel cupboard in the hall, our sock/undies drawers and sorted through the stuff piling up on the dressers; so much to do and still not much done. At least I finally have a day at home to relax and do this sort of thing.
I found out I have two appointments on Monday...dentist/toe and I think I may reschedule the dentist again...we shall see. I just don't feel like going there ever since the rude episode.
Today, I worked on making a get well card with the gals but they ended up throwing felt everywhere. I don't know why they were so antsy. Plus, they are obsessed with the rats (and letting them out!). I'm going to have to get locks.
I need to get a few more curtain rods and hang more curtains up. Doubling the material on the windows is a good idea for Winter drafts. Plus, I've been putting towels on the old window frames to keep cold air out; seems to be helping a bit.
I was looking at a book by Tasha Tudor and noticed my fingers looked blue against the white pages. That's when I realized it was very cold in the living room. I had Jon shut the doors, open a heat vent and sure enough the room is nice and toasty. Plus, we all cuddled under a blanket; even Mr. Nelson joined in.
I finished a little quilt with guinea pigs...I may put that up tomorrow. And I'm starting some paintings with my new art group in mind, EHAG. It's such an interesting group...plus, making Halloween related things all year is not so bad!
I've got a few things I'm prepping. There is a local juried art exhibit and I want to enter about 5 paintings and one sculpture (maybe more). I'm excited by this and I hope I can have at least one or two things shown. I hope I sell one or two things as well. Last year, I didn't sell anything but I at least won an award. So, this was nice. I'm really glad they accept submissions later in the year instead of other juried shows that focus entry right at the holiday season time. I don't understand this...I feel like it's a sneaky way of eliminating people who have young families...but I'm just sensitive about this, I guess.
There's another show I want to enter in March and I feel like I can do fairly well in this. It's for soft sculptures and should be fun. The entry/show is all digital, I'm supposing.
I feel a tad tired...housework does that to you...but at least I found more supplies in my clean up (socks make surprisingly good material for my sculptural pieces...but more on that another time).
I’m having an urge to do a lot of quilting…ideas keep popping into my head. Plus, I want to finish several other projects and such. I think I’ll start complaining if I keep typing as I am tired and it’s only 8:30pm. At least I feel good about the local art show. Now, to get some pics, turn them into slides and send them off by March. I wish more places did the digital thing instead. Ah, well…
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Monday, February 05, 2007
Anyway, I'm glad it's "normal" weather even though I'm feeling like Dr. Zhiavago...I even found a quarter inch of ice on our windows! This is on the inside...ugh. I may be putting blankets on the windows...
At least our cockatiel is doing all right...Odie is warm and preening right now. Of course, he's got a heat vent all to his little self. I'm going to give him a box and see if he likes that. Apparently, boxes are nice for insulating. Mr. Nelson is acting out as it's cold and he doesn't like to go out and potty. But what are you going to do.
I really, really wish people would just hibernate for the Winter. I could totally do this. I'd probably be the Queen of hibernating! I must be part Moomin’s or something.
I was feeling a little depressed last night...I started to feel like I wasn't getting/doing the best I could in my art. I felt a little like I'm not in the "in-groups" in the art scene/blog worlds...and then I realized, who cares? These are just clique-ish stuff and I was never really into that anyway. It's not me and not to feel bad about not being _________(fill in the blank). It's really silly. But that's what I was feeling last night. It's funny how a good nights sleep helps put you in perspective.
On another note, I finished reading Jane Austen's "Persuasion" and am starting "Northanger Abbey". After this, I will try Anthony Trollope. I've read a few of his shorter stories and they are very humorous...just have to get into that frame of mind/writing style.
The gals are watching the rats and giving them attention. So sweet...they love the animals so much. I joined a few flickr groups on cockatiels, rats and bichons. It's inspiring to see what people do for their little pals.
Yesterday, we went to the store and the gals were in good spirits. While other kids cried and begged for junk, my gals sang and chatted about just looking at the toys and waiting for Christmas. It's not always like this but these little moments make me feel like I'm doing something right.
Sunday, February 04, 2007
Anyway, it's cold. Winter has been in full swing and the temp has dropped to 7 degrees with a wind dropping us to minus 10 degrees! Ack!
I feel a bit cabin fever-ish and am looking forward to going to the fabric shop, if my stomach holds up.
I'm working on a few projects...mostly trying to keep sane. hahaha Just kidding, working on curtains and what nots.
Been creating with the kids...we made Norrie's pikachu a house...
(made of fabric and other bits...)
Then, I couldn't stand it any longer and had Jon pull out the dollhouse I made back in the 1990's (pre-marriage days) and let the girls play with that while we watched Nausicaa of the valley (very good, btw!).