Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Hey, I'm Blogging From Virginia

Yesterday we drove through Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New York, Connecticutt, and then Pennsylvania. Isn't New England fun? Our Comfort Inn accomodations weren't really all that comfortable. After breakfast, we loaded the next disc of Amelia Peabody and motored through Pennsylvania, Maryland and into Virginia. We drove around Baltimore and DC, and two sightsee-er accidents--in the north bound lanes. Why do drivers have to slow down to look and see the accident?

Our Hilton Garden Inn accomodations look like they will be much nicer. And i am within walking distance of a Joann's, Michaels, K-Mart, Target, Staples, Panera and Wendy's for a Taco Salad--my favorite. The weather is fantastic. Blue sky, sun and heat. The people we have had contact with have all had plenty of Southern charm and they ask--sweet or unsweetened when you order ice tea. What's not to like.

Our dinner tonight was served with a side of annoying 5 year old. She kept turning around in her seat and sticking her tongue out at us. It's just too bad that you can't yell "What are YOU looking at!" and scare them into behaving better. The mother told the child that the NEXT time she did it the child would have to apologise to us. As far as I was concerned--the parents owed us a major apology--for the child and for the husband/father who NEVER stopped talking through the entire meal. Who ever said men never talk????

Sunday, April 16, 2006

On The Road Again

We are on the road again, starting tomorrow. I have laundry to do and some ironing and I have to clean out the fridge. But we are going on my favorite ride--not the scary, lots of traffic one, which I don't enjoy at all! My husband is working this week- teaching a class--so I have to bring "entertainment" for myself. Hand sewing and some paper and glue to make collages. I have a stack of books to read also. We are going South so the chance of warm weather and sunshine is pretty good. Sitting in the sun is one of my most favorite things to do.

Kay is ready and waiting for us South of 20 in Georgia. We have brush and trees to burn and my husband has two screen doors to hang. I'll probably have to prune the bushes and trees in the front dooryard yet again. I'm going to try and get my husband to look at a house or two while we are down there. He won't go for it. Really, there is SO MUCH TRAFFIC!!!! But.

Our daughter, my friend Patty and Peggy across the street are in charge of our house while we are gone. So my fabric and sewing machine will be safe. See you in two weeks!

Friday, April 14, 2006

The Idea "Hatches"

For weeks now, I have been "collecting" ephemera. Scraps of paper, envelopes with interesting lining texture, those annoying postcards in magazines, receipts from purchases. I had no idea why. My mind sometimes has it's own agenda. I wait patiently until it decides to let me in on it's next idea. Last night I got the message. I started cutting house shapes from columns of newspaper type. Cutting small sections of colored backgrounds to use as windows and doors. And decided to use lines of journaling as the grass. This is my first collage--in my journal, on my morning page. If this has been done before--by millions--don't tell me. Let me just be joyful in this simple pleasure for a while longer.

I have wanted to collage with paper. But every little thing I make has looked too "forced", too awkward. Not me. These little houses speak directly to my heart. Even as a kindergartner, I loved the play house best of all. And I "played house". I asked Santa for little sets of dishes, little pots and pans. A crib for my doll.

If you read the journaling--I have decided that my muse is the wastebasket. Refuse. Discards. I choose the Webster's definition---" the uncultivated land". I am happy. I have a plan.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Life Is Just One Big Dress-Up!

Over twenty years ago, I got this little bear for Valentine's Day. She's 8 inches tall and her name is Muffy. She has on her original outfit. A little print sunsuit, ribbon on her ear and her pink shoes. I fell in love with her instantly. Then I found out you can buy clothes for her!

Here she is in her Easter bunny suit complete with basket. That's her clone to the left in a duck outfit. For a few years I went "crazy" buying outfits for Muffy. She and I have purchased quite a lot of them. The clothes fill a very large Longaberger basket. VERY LARGE. I thought maybe if I was reasonable in the amount of blog time Muffy got--she could dress up for holidays and special occasions. For awhile there, Muffy was sort of a surrogate *grandchild* since I knew pretty early on that there wouldn't be any real grandchildren. Now it doesn't seem to bother me anymore. So now Muffy is just a bear with lots of clothes.

My new pink tulips. Not as striking as the red ones were, but nice and Eastery. Yesterday I had a very busy day. Work, Manicure and Dinner with a Friend. LOL I am SUCH a spoiled brat! Yesterday we dined at the local Italian restaurant where they seemed to have had a shortage of red sauce. Everyone's dish, that I saw go by, had just a dot of sauce. My stuffed shells were sauceless and cheeseless. This place is called Impasta but should be Imposter. We had wine. Nothing matters when we have wine.

Watched LOST and it was okay. Bernard isn't a very likeable addition to the show. He could stay busy hauling rocks for the remainder of the show and never have another speaking part and I would be happy. He's a dentist and he has crooked teeth.

Also watched TopChef. Finally figured out what Stephen is doing. He only knows wine. Is not a chef. So he makes food with the attributes of a particular wine. That's why his ingredients look like a "science experiment" to the other chefs. And I'm pretty tired of the soup in shotglasses trick and the appetizer in a spoon. That's fine for a cocktail party, but this was a fancy sit-down dinner. I enjoy watching because I like cooking shows in general. But I haven't seen anything really special and some of these "chefs"----aren't. Tiffani can pack her knives.

Yesterday I pumped gas. Yes, Deb. I did it! All by myself. The gas light was on and I knew I'd never make it home so I had to pull into a gas station and there was no one to "help"---which means "do it for me" so I had to pull up my *big girl* socks and do it myself. The gals at Studio 119 where I got my manicure, were very proud of me. They say I'm "too funny".

Monday, April 10, 2006

You Were the "Carrot"

I told myself I couldn't post until I got my taxes done and mailed. So you were the "carrot" dangling in front of me to finally get the work done. And it was awful. Two large checks. One to the Federal and one State. I hate giving more of our hard earned money to *THEM*.

A present from my husband. He bought these flat bowls and more cup like bowls for the color alone. I did use one of the fushia bowls for my breakfast grapefruit. Lovely. They are much brighter than the photo. No flash. But the roof has skylights and I think the light from above washes out the color. I have to make a sign that says "No photos in here" and post it where I'll see it.

I left this little label on this bowl. The Lime Green one. I have two of the Orange bowls --which were not as popular? Must keep the customers for asking for more? I wonder if it works?

Today is another beautiful day in Paradise. Sunny, mild and Spring. We don't usually (ever) have an actual Spring here in Maine. We have cold weather and then a blast of hot weather and wind which ruins all the tulip and magnolia blossoms in one day, and then it's cold again. Then it's the Fourth of July. We're not wearing coats.

Had a delightful lunch out with a friend. Indian food. I have no idea what I had but it had eggplant, tofu and lots more. Nine gems. I have a bag of leftovers for my dinner tomorrow. And we splurged and got the bread sampler. All delicious. We walked back to my friend's house and had tea and a visit from someone passing by. Small town life. Next door, a gardener was tilling the front gardens getting ready to plant. She ( the gardener) was smiling as she worked. I can't think of a better job. Shoveling and digging in a garden bed. Her company name on her truck--Pretty Flowers.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

I Can't Think of A Title

Today was just one of those LONG days at work. There were four full non-fiction carts when I got there--not bad enough so they wheeled a fifth one over. Had a volunteer there and she did one non-fiction while I shelved a cart of Mystery and then I did three carts of non-fic. My feet are tired and my eyes are spinning. Good thing it's Survivor night. Something to live for.

Today's photos are graphic goodies. The first--my paperweight. A ceramic rock. I just had to buy it cause I love anything with dots. This is a photo of my acrylic paint bottles. I store them bottoms up so I can see what color they are.

My tulips once again before they die. I just love the way they look. Yesterday my husband and I had a very nice day "out". He found two pairs of nice sweatpants--or shall we call them "casual pants" since I rarely, if ever, sweat in them. On the sale rack. Regular price $65 and I got to have them for $16 each. They have one thin white stripe down the legs but I have a dye pen and can make them solid black or put dots on them. I wanted and needed new "casual pants" so I am very happy.

We continued to walk around the Maine Mall to see all the new stores (Pottery Barn)--with no customers in them---until we came to William- Sonoma. We were gazing at the ceiling hung pot rack and the manager came over to say hello and ask if we had any questions. I recognized her as a Master Gardener classmate and we all chatted for a good while. Then another sales person comes on the floor and it's someone we've know for years. So we had a good, long chat. Then it was time for dinner at Macaroni Grill. Then it started snowing. So we went to the bookstore and I got Karen Michel's Altered Images book--which I devoured. I'm going to try everything. Page by page. Lost was great. Abby is a crazy in pajamas. This could all be Hurley's dream. Wouldn't that be awful????

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

04-05-06 Today's Date

My triptych on the bed in the best light in the house, no flash. Deborah will have to say whether this works to the subject matter of Ricky Timm's challenge. I don't know Ricky or his work. I haven't done any edge binding or final embellishment.

Red and pink painted fabric that got blown around in the wind outside and re-distributed the paint where I didn't put it. It'll be nice all cut up.

Wasabi in it's actual colorway. I am really liking this and wish I had made more than a half yard. But if I had made it bigger would it look like this. Acrylic paint and fabric dye. Looks very organic.

I have more neat photos for tomorrow. Today I'm going to the Mall. I never go to the Mall but I need sweatpants and that's the only place that might have them--Macy's. Also a Williams-Sonoma and Origins. I'm taking the camera in case I see something you'all might like to see also. My husband is going away tomorrow and wants me to "go someplace" with him today. He's so romantic. Shopping is the way to this girl's heart.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Rain- Work

Wasabi! the color is off even though I didn't use the flash. It may have been too dark in the room last night when I took this photo. The green is the color of wasabi and there is black nori color and a tiny touch of white. I may use this in a bowl quilt with white rice.

My Sonji Bundle, not! Sonji, where are you? I miss you. I decided to make myself a little bundle like Sonji's to cheer myself up--LOL---Sonji don't worry--I won't be a threat. I think the simplist things are really the most difficult. My painted fabric is a great example.

The book I am reading is LOST by Michael Robotham. A British detective looking for a little girl who has been lost for 3 years. The story begins with him hugging a buoy in the middle of the Thames river. He's been shot and is bleeding out. Has no memory of what has happened. I've noticed more guns being used in British police novels lately--the criminals are all armed now and it's probably too dangerous for them to go about without a gun.

It's really raining today and the fire danger will go down now and the spring flowers will bounce right out of the ground. I think it's a very *good thing* that we got all the garden clean-up done this past weekend. Time for me to finally get the taxes done and get ready to go on a vacation road trip. Virginia and then Georgia and stops along the way to visit with friends. Sounds good to me--except for the taxes part.

Monday, April 03, 2006

We've Been Working

Here's a rather *juicey* photo to entice you to read this post. A wonderful view into the center of one of the red tulips my husband brought home with the groceries. We planted red tulips in front of our second house a long time ago. My husband was traveling in the Netherlands frequently and he brought home some very expensive Dutch tulip bulbs. The flowers were show stoppers. Deep red. Black dotted centers. Yellows and gold and green on the petal edges.

People wonder why we live in Maine. This is why. It was the best of the sky photos I took yesterday and still doesn't do justice to the blue. The picture doesn't convey the saturation level or the intensity. I already have a suntan!

So---the sky was blue and the sun was shining and we were raking the lawn and collecting pine needles and acorns into piles. I have my raking blister on my right hand. I was wearing gloves. My husband was on the south side of the house clearing out the flower beds we neglected last fall. And a good thing we didn't clear them since we never had any snow. Some of my perennials *frost heaved* out of the garden and the last of my rose bushes have died and gone to heaven. After 14 years, I think I'll have to agree with the experts--roses are an *annual* here in Maine. It's not the cold. It's the wet. Rots their roots.

I also have some fiber art content but no photos--yet. I painted two pieces of fabric and have a third, interesting piece that was a drip cloth under the second piece. Also, I didn't notice that I had paint on my new manicure. So now I have red and turquoise nails. First time I've done that. I can usually remove all the paint, glue and other stuff I get into and *save the nails*. not this time.

I've also started reading what may turn out to be a *good book*. I haven't had much luck finding something good to read, so this is exciting.

Also of interest, a website for the television show LOST. The bloggers have TIVO and record the shows and go back and do stills of the important *events*. They posted the *map* Locke saw on the lock down doors, translated all the Latin on it, had close ups of the airplane going over the motel (Oceanic), realized that the unmarried woman Locke was doing the home inspection for was Sahid's Nadia, and did a close up of the driver's license found on the body in the grave. Wow. They have a lot of time on their hands. They even think Anthony Cooper, Locke's *father*, is the con man who stole money from Sawyer's family. I'm just not paying enough attention here.

Editor's Note: Due to VERY popular demand! To find this site: Go to Dogpile. Type in LOST. Click on first entry. Scroll to March 30. Second paragraph has site for map. Click. If you keep hitting continue you'll find all sorts of entries to fascinate your LOST craving. I could just link you--but, hey, the hunt makes it so much more fun???

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Life In A Small Town

No pictures but while I was sitting on the porch, in the sun, on Thursday, I kept hearing sirens and all sorts of "emergency" sounds. I looked around. I sniffed. No smoke. Maybe a car wreck? Nope, it was four acres right behind my house--on fire.

The fire tanker truck couldn't get in to the "nature" area the town calls the Town Commons. It's where kids go to drink, smoke and "carry on" and where citizens dump cars, refrigerators and other good stuff. In order to keep the citizens on the right path, the Town placed two big boulders at the entrance to said Commons. This means they have to carry in any trash they dump and not drive it in.

Well, the boulders also kept the fire department out. So Public Works had to come and lift the boulders out of the way so the fire truck could go in and put out the blaze----which had been burning away while they--"fiddled"???

The Town announced that an emergency evacuation plan had been formulated for nearby homeowners but was not necessary as no property "of any value" was damaged--other than the fire truck, which came very close to being damaged.

This story was the number two news item on the 11 o'clock news and in the local paper on Friday. The top story was about a rabid raccoon.