Friday, April 29, 2011


Believe it or not that long strip of plastic shower curtain liner is still the A-1 preferred toy around here. I usually wake up and find that Karma has pulled it all into a pile like this. It is covered with tiny pin holes from her attacking teeth. (She has no claws.)
I have to re-lay it across the room a couple times a day. Karma can still imagine it is alive and will suddenly leap into the air--pawing and batting at it like a crazy person. I was thinking that I might have to cut a chunk of it into thin strips and make an actual cat toy that I can attach to the end of the string on her cat pole. But then--that may not interest her at all. ROFL! ;)
Dagan and Leah came over Tuesday night. Leah brought me some Ziploc containers with dividers that I plan to use to see if I can make up my own frozen meals.
I did make up some quiche using "fake" (soy) hotdogs and have made up some frozen dinners with that--and some green beans and corn to fill the other spots. Haven't tried to heat one up yet. Some leftovers to finish first in the frig. ;)
I have been cooking and baking lately. Here's what's left of some sweet cornbread I made a few days ago.
Dagan worked on his miniatures. Leah made a wedding card and played with some of the oriental stamps a bit. We were all tired, but it was a really nice evening, as usual. Now, hopefully, Leah and I will be shopping next Tuesday night. ;)
I think finding my goal list did help motivate me. (I should have it out where I can see it more often--hehe!) I began cutting the paper for 50 birthday cards and at least started that project.
I think I am finally deleted from facebook! When Leah was here I had her look and try to locate me on facebook. No luck at all. Tada! If you want to delete your facebook account forever go here. Thanks so much for the link, Iggy!! I hope it worked for you, too? :):)
I hadn't been sleeping well for a while. Finally just plain collapsed and slept from 2pm till 1am! Whew! I needed it. Felt great! :)
Have been taking a trip thru some of my recent past. Been reading my "Angel Books"--journaling in spiral notebooks directed towards GA/angels/higher self that I had kept from 1993 to about 2006. Never daily or like a diary, per say. And entries have become much more erratic once I moved up here to go to college in 1999. It's a strange, frustrating, and enlightening thing to see yourself from a distance. An odd feeling to know how things turned out as I'm reading about my confusion, questions, and hopes as my health deteriorated. I'm on book 31 out of 38.
I still don't know what my purpose is.
Maybe I'll finish them today.
Anywho...supposed to be in the 60s again today and then back into the 40s for a couple days. Nature's temperature see-saw game--hehe! Have a great weekend!! :)
"Character cannot be developed in the ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved."
Helen Keller

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Karma got a big thrill last night. Was in the 40s and not very windy or raining, so I stuck her blue suede cat bed on the porch right outside the door. She loved it! Spent hours and hours out there in the dark. (Anything new, of course--and that was a first.)
Here's a shot with the flash--which just annoyed Karma, all settled cozily in the dark.
Me--last night I took the floppy worn leather handles off of this wooden box...
...cut down a piece of felt for the bottom, and laid all my fountain pens inside.
Even had room for the three empty preppy pens (in the center) that I am saving for new future inks. ;)
The pens were just all piled up on each other in that smaller box and there wasn't much room left for any additional pens. At least they are all lying flat for now--hehe!
One thing I did notice is that the Noodler's Piston Pen that I bought...
...well, the ink had all but evaporated!!??
This pen was filled at the same time as the rest of my new ones--and I had only used it once! Not good.
I spent a long time trying to empty and clean it out. They don't come apart that I could see, so it is a tedious, repetitive process of filling with water and shaking and emptying. I had Noodler's Bernanke Blue in it and that is the fast drying ink--so I wondered if it was the ink and not the pen. I refilled it with Private Reserve Plum and we'll see if that ink evaporates.
In the meantime, Leah asked if they could switch Craft Night to Wednesday because she is taking a golf lesson tonight. No problem. I may be tired because my days and nights are flipped, but I wouldn't pass on our first Craft Night this year for anything! :) :)
I have spent days here on the McLap cleaning up and deleting pictures and documents. A huge project I have been putting off since I got the McLap over a year ago and transferred the Windows/MS brain contents into the McLap/Safari thought processes. I am not finished, but I have made tremendous progress! I can say I am halfways organized on the McLap. Whoohoo! Or, shall we say, probably as organized as I am ever going to get trying to adapt my old MS storage ways into the Apple system. Much better than it was, that's for sure.
What got me started was that I went into my documents to find the list I had copied of all the ladies for that new Circle Letter so that I could print it off. This prodded a desire to clean up my documents so I could more easily find what the heck I was looking for. So, I decided it was finally time to at least begin the process.
Then while I was sorting my documents I came across my goal list for 2011. Sadly, I had practically nothing I could check off, was way too general with so many of them, had things I wanted to add, and had written up the list before I realized how much I was going to be invested in a daily spiritual practice. So I revamped it a little. I really, really will be lucky if I get half of them this year since it is nearly May already! Oh well. ;)
Revised Goals for 2011
  1. YouTube--buy taller tripod
  2. Calligraphy--practice and try new alphabets
  3. Keep up with various online audio classes
  4. New spiritual journal
  5. Read the Angel Books
  6. Angel Books--make notations
  7. Read the Dream Journals
  8. Read Morning Pages notebooks
  9. Read TBR book stack
  10. Bookbinding--make a journal with the 90 lb. paper
  11. CBP--finish bird and flower paintings
  12. Watercolors--wildflowers and botanicals
  13. Watercolors--paint paper for journal and bookcard covers
  14. Sketchbooks--EDM
  15. Sketchbooks--Ink and watercolor
  16. Handmade Paper--set of red Christmas cards with white snowflakes
  17. Handmade Paper--try new techniques
  18. Cards--set of birthday cards
  19. Cards--set of Christmas cards
  20. Cards--new techniques
  21. Bookcards--handmade paper covers
  22. Bookcards--painted watercolor paper covers
  23. Bookcards--regular covers
  24. Soulcomfort/Meditation--establish a regular practice
  25. Sacred Circle--once a month
  26. Organize craft bookcases (buy shelves and corner shelf)
  27. Clean and organize desk and files
  28. Clean and organize pictures and documents on McLap
Finding the goal list gave me the motivation to stay on task with number 28--ROFL! And now I am winding down and will be heading for bed shortly. Was a gorgeous day in the 60s yesterday, but I slept thru most of it...with the window open, tho. Today--50s, cloudy and rainy--and the window will be open. ;)
"Happiest are the people who give the most happiness to others."
Denis Diderot

Saturday, April 23, 2011


We haven't actually seen the sun for days.
I just picked an older picture of Karma sitting in the sun as a reminder it does exist--ROFL!
I wouldn't have seen much of it if it had been out. My days and nights are totally flipped at the moment. But I have been puttering about in the dead of night--hehe! Being a good girl and starting on my files?
Decided to combine our paper flowers for crafting. Too many flowers in too many places. I took this box that I had painted and glazed a few years ago...
...and put all the store-bought paper flowers in there. As you can see, we mostly buy white ones so we can color or decorate them ourselves. Lots of room for more!
Then I had an assortment of small die cut flowers I had cut out using the Cuttlebug that were in all four of these smaller empty wooden boxes (we had sitting around to be decorated or to use for woodburning).
I decided to put them all in this one shallow wooden box that at least had a couple of dividers.
Yes, we are going to have to just dig around and search in the chaos...not Leah's and my preferred storage style...but the number of paper flowers has grown to where it's not practical to have them all sorted out and organized like we'd like them to be. Leah doesn't know I did this and I imagine she might be a little disappointed, too, since we are both pretty OCD about these things--but we'll just have to dig and search. Sorry, Leah. ;) They are easier to get to, now, tho.
So what has it really looked like up here the past few days?
Dark and wet.
Despite all this rain, can you see the stubborn frozen clump that's left of the humongous snowpile between the garages? (Can double-click to "embiggen")
It is just plain saturated up here. Water sitting in the fields...
...and the lake in the parking lot keeps growing.
For the first time I remember, there's a second lake up in the next section of parking spaces. And do you notice anything? Empty!!! All the piles of boards and siding...the big orange machine...the roofing you think they are really done and gone? They disappeared before the rain/sleet days began. But--did they just move everything because they don't like wading thru water to get to their vehicles and didn't want the lumber to rot? Will they reappear once the sun shines? Only time will tell. ;)
I don't think I mentioned that thru a blog (and I can't remember whose now) that was talking about how nobody writes letters anymore and they remembered "circle letters" (which I'd never heard of and had to comment on, of course). One of the blog commenters suggested maybe we could start one. I emailed her, along with some other folks. So the first circle letter is making its way around the United States. Cool! I am lucky number 7! I am actually shocked that I have never done this or even heard of it before!
I think this is how it works:
You write a letter for all the other people to read and add it to the envelope. You get to read all the individual letters from the other people in the circle--and then send it on its way to the next person on the circle list. Once it has been around the first time, you remove your old letter when it comes back to you and then write and add a new one. You are supposed to try to get the letters on their way within a week. :)
So exciting!
I can hardly wait for that envelope full of letters to make it here to Fargo! It's like having 9-10 new pen pals at once! (I'm not sure how many we have. She said ten, but I only see nine addresses on the list.) Anyways, this just sounds awesome! I wonder if they hand-write them or print them off? Do they use stationary or legal pads (like I usually do)? Do they put their own letter inside an envelope..or card? Probably not cards like I'm used to doing because of the weight....??
I'll have to let you know when it arrives.
Makes me want to dig out some actual stationary or nicer paper I have...and I have lots of inks and pens to pick from (you know mine will be handwritten--hehe!)...and I could decorate plain paper or even legal pads with stamps or stickers...hey, I could even type one on my old Underwood! Meeting ladies from PA, NY, ID, OR, TX, TX, (me), OH, SC!!! No idea how old they are, what they do, what their lives are like...I can hardly wait! For privacy's sake I can't tell you anything personal, of course, but I can sure tell you if there are any artsy-crafty ladies or things like that...and eventually share blog links, if they don't mind. :)
You can see how much fun this is for me to ruminate on--LOL! Well, time to get moving. Hope everyone is having a great weekend! :):)
"Take more time, cover less ground."
Thomas Merton

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I didn't want to post this video until Leah had seen the surprises. Dagan and Leah came over last night and Leah was as excited over the metal "chops" as I was. :):) In fact, we were talking about meeting next Tuesday for a Craft Night--which we haven't done all winter--and Dagan said he'd might even come because he has miniatures he could paint. Whoohoo! Nice!
Anyways, here was the package opening.

I can see why people like to make these kind of videos. I know I like to watch other people's, but they're kind of fun to make, too. ;)
Leah and I decided to wait to cut my hair. We were just busy with other things and I wasn't feeling tip top. Dagan worked at hooking up the new printer and getting the McLap and printer to talk to each other. Here's the new black printer sitting in old G55's spot.
Thank you, Blaine and Kathy!!!
You can see G55 is now delegated to sitting on top of the new printer's empty box until I can get her written up on freecycle. *sniff-sniff*
When Caroline came in the afternoon she had exciting news! She and her boyfriend have been together now for five years and it was recently their anniversary. He surprised her--with an engagement ring!! So happy for her! For them. :):)
Since I have been on Dagan and Leah's Sprint family plan for so long I have qualified for a free fancy-schmancy phone--like a year ago, Leah said. But I didn't want to try to learn another new gadget and I love my old flip phone (you know how attached I can get to things). Well, last night Leah was showing me the fancy new phone that Dagan and Leah both got a while ago. My free one wouldn't be as elaborate as theirs, but it would be able to go on the internet and such. Finger tapping and flipping screens...can even play solitaire and check email...OMG! I am going to get one. I almost said probably (just nerves), but we are planning on going to look on May 3rd.
May 3rd is our usual Tuesday to meet (every two weeks) for Sacred Circle (but we often end up doing other things that come up--like hook up printers--LOL!). Well, because I was printing off all these vegetarian recipes during G55's last hurrah, I was making up a list of odd ingredients that I want to look for at Tochi's. So--Leah and I plan to go to Tochi's on the 3rd (I'll have money then) and hopefully also make it finally over to Lowe's to buy the wood, etc, for the shelves we've been planning to add to the bookcases since I got the new one...when?...last fall? We eventually do get around to things--honest! ROFL! So, now we added the Sprint store to the list, too. I just hope it is a good day for me so I can make it to all those places. :):)
I've been on a shift where I am going to bed between 3-5am. I am still doing my usual routine of listening to audios, reading, and journaling when I get up. But I really do need to get to some crafting. I am almost out of cards, bookcards, and even recycled cards--and you know how I handwrite letters and notes all the time. Can't have that! Just putting a letter in an envelope without a card of some kind seems like a naked letter to me any more--hehe! And then my messy files and desk are still waiting for me...
So I'd better go get something additional done today. ;)
Hope everybody is having a good week.
"Love cures people--both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it."
Dr. Karl Menninger

Monday, April 18, 2011


There was a hint of blue sky this morning...
...but it quickly shifted...
...over to a dark grey sky. Again. I haven't seen any snowflakes yet. Maybe it will miss us or stay warm enough to rain. Who knows?
I couldn't resist showing you some close-ups of the kalimba.
It amazes me how those beautiful sounds can come from...
...these thin metal tines held down onto a piece of wood. :)
And here's the super strong magnets on the bottom side of the box.
I have had a few people ask how Karma likes it. I have the kalimba right next to my chair and pick it up randomly to play for a few minutes. When Karma is up on the chair with me she immediately starts purring and rubs her head on the bottom of the box. Apparently she likes it, too. ;)
Since it has been so cold up here again, Karma is back to snoozing where it is warmer... her cat bed--which I stuck under the end table.
Believe it or not the roofers were here pounding away overhead on Sunday morning!? I figured either they didn't know what day it was, finally decided they might want to get paid (the lady in the office told me they weren't getting paid until the job was finished), or there was a leak here on my end of the building. Not here, thank goodness. It was really strange to hear hammering on a Sunday, tho.
And on Saturday I got a knock on the door from a couple of Indian ladies I could barely understand wanting to give me Jesus fliers. That wasn't what I expected, either. LOL!
After the marathon printing day that went till 2am...the printer has decided not to work again. Also found that funny. ;)
BTW--I watched Burlesque and Hereafter and enjoyed both of them. Neither of them were like top of my list awesome, but they were both good. (I'd watch anything with Cher or Matt Damon--LOL!)
Tomorrow Caroline comes in the afternoon and Dagan and Leah come after work. Instead of doing Sacred Circle, Dagan's going to hook up the brand-new, fancy-schmancy printer and Leah is going to cut my hair. Going to be a busy day. I can hardly wait to show them all my new musical toy!! Maybe they'll want to try it? :)
Today--just washing clothes and puttering about.
A great week ahead, right? :)
"When we are no longer able to change a situation...We are challenged to change ourselves."
Viktor Frankl

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Saturday-4:45pm-Kalimba arrived!

A dark day up here in Fargo.
The snow has already been melting away...
...and the lake in the parking lot has been growing--hehe!
Here's my attempt at the Gothic alphabet that I forgot to take a picture of. That's a really difficult one for me. Of course, I have never tried anything but the Italic. I must learn to stretch myself, right?
Anyways...on to the big news!
The Kalimba is here!!
I just made a couple of videos for you. :):)

Now I must get back to playing with my new toy!!
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes."
Marcel Proust

Friday, April 15, 2011


We did have some sun.
The warmer weather and melting away of the snow brought the roofers back, as I mentioned. The ground is so soft and muddy that they lay down a path of sheets of plywood for their big orange machine to drive across the grass.
And I was back to keeping my blinds drawn because they were up and down right next to my porch...
...and later right near my living room windows. For some crazy reason Karma actually wanted to spy on them. She cried till I pulled the blinds up a bit for her. (If I don't meet her feline window demands the naughty girl bites holes in the plastic blinds.) Her spying didn't last more than a couple minutes. Always likes to believe she is braver than she is--LOL!
They were here for a few days--clomping, drilling, pounding...
...and tossing down pieces of siding.
I just don't want any more leaks.
I took an old journal that had the first few pages torn out (can't remember why now) and decided to make it my calligraphy practice book.
I learned this Italic style in my class all those many years ago. I am so out of practice.
I mixed these up. Sorry. This was my first attempt at the alphabet.
But after I practiced for several pages AND made a sorry attempt with the Gothic alphabet, I realized that the memory of all those many hours of practicing the Italic was coming back to me. I could really tell the difference trying a new alphabet. I was horrible. (Forgot to take a picture.) Anyways, I plan to continue to practice the Italic calligraphy and get back in the swing of things.
Well...I think I forgot to tell you that for my birthday I got an extra big Target gift card this year from my brother and his wife. Leah and Dagan said they'd "buy" it from me, so that I could finally get a new all-in-one printer. Dagan researched printers for me online.
My 11 year old HP G55 that I bought "as is" (floor model and the scanner never worked)...well, she has been getting touchier and touchier. Her circuits are a bit frayed. Recently it has taken me up to an hour a couple different times (instead of the occasional 15-20 minutes of pleading that has been going on this past year) just to get her to remember how to print from the laptop. (She never did like the switch from the desk computer to the laptop...maybe doesn't care for Macs...or her cord being disconnected and moved about?)
The most recent addition has been that she doesn't want to shut off if she is on or turn on if she is off. Takes a lot of persuading. Got to the point where I put that purple post-it note over her on/off button a couple months ago to remind me not to bother her and I just left her on all the time.
But then she had problems remembering how to come out of sleep mode. And yet, when I open the blinds and the morning sun hits her from across the room she revs up and thinks I am going to make copies--poor thing! It's the only thing she hasn't forgotten how to do--yet--make copies. (The sun hits between the cracks of her uneven cover and she gets all excited to show me she remembers copies.) The poor old thing has Altzheimers. On her last wobbly circuits. :)
Then Thursday morning this big box arrived by FedEx.
I was hoping she wouldn't notice...
...but she did. *sigh*
I decided that I might as well use up some of the ink cartridges before Dagan and Leah come over to move her away and hook up the new guy in town, right? All black and slick and wireless, he is--sitting there--waiting--quietly. I bet his scanner even works.
She was totally defeated. Wouldn't work. No way. No how.
I tried every trick I knew for an hour and forty-two minutes. Nothing. She'd tease me and say she was processing the job for 5-10 minutes at a time and then disconnect or tell me a fatal error had been made. I asked her to try different tasks. Used different brain routes. Shut things down and started them up. Plugged and unplugged. But I think her little metal heart was broken.
I turned her off and asked the techie angels to work on her during the night.
Now, I know that sounds bizarre, but it works half the time.
And it did. This morning she was raring to go. I have been printing all day! Weekly schedules, recipes, photos, etc. We have had a grand time. I figured I had best print while I could. Tomorrow is another day...and she may not remember a thing she did today. did herself proud! Very slowly...but she ran a magnificent printer marathon today! It was almost like the old days. :):)
And she did say one of her cartridges is almost out of ink, but she wouldn't tell me which one--ROFL! I will miss her. All those college papers...the endless times I would print off some partial story or poem or assignment I was writing because I still need paper and pen in hand to really work on drafts...
G55 will be missed.
Maybe the weather confused her and she thought it was January again--when she was still in better working order at least part of the time? This morning the windows were iced...
...and the snow... back.
So much for the green grass--ROFL! The world has a soft white blanket again. What is it about Fargo's simultaneous flooding and snowstorms? ;)
Seriously tho--it won't last long. Spring snowstorms melt away fairly quickly. Even the pounding they are taking west of us--won't stay on the ground long. :)
Anyways...been a long day...have a nice weekend!! :) :)
"Vision is the art of seeing things invisible."
Jonathan Swift