I cleaned my plate most of my life because I felt so badly that I had food and most of the world did not, a fact my mom reminded me of at every meal. She does not like it when food goes to the garbage. I always asked for a doggie bag at a restaurant. Mom freezes left-overs if she thinks they will not be eaten that week and that ends up in something else. The joke growing up was to clean your plate because what we didn't eat that meal would show up in some other form or fashion in the next. My mother will be happy to read this.
This is why I love Flickr. You can discover someone then discover something else ... Nina van de Goor's ceramics and her site Ninainform. Through her I found Plint and had the great fortune to find Carolien Adriaansche making these adorable creatures from discarded plastic bottles! Looks like she gives workshops for kids to make these amazing recycled creatures. Unfortunately, I can't read any of it but I can understand that it is freakin' fantastic!
Can you hear me squealing BRILLIANT from where you are sitting right now? Heard about this yesterday morning on KUOW. Japanese concept cars like this incredible Nissan's Pivo, watch it drive and spin! More about the Pivo. Also Honda’s Puyo -- little like a marshmallow on wheels.
We are a little late this year carving our pumkins, on top of that we only have four tonight to carve! Four better than none and we still have one night left. M got the dremel tool out and gave that a try.
I cooked today. M helped me. We have a Chow Babes tomorrow with an ethnic food theme. I had bought a summer spring roll the other day and after hunting on the internet for the name of the wraps, thought that would be fun and easy to make. Fish Sauce is always the secret ingredient and you must always have this onhand. Also made Bite-sized Pepper Steaks, the flavor was wonderful, the meat very tough.
Then I remembered I have been wanting to make "California Rolls" for many, many years. I started to look up recipes and get very hungy. Ran to Ranch Market and bought lots of wonderful stuff.
Earlier in the day I watched Ming make sushi, describing how to make "sushi rice". Watched a video online and was feeling pretty confident. Washing the rice is very important. I don't have one of those wonderful wooden bowls for mixing the rice with the vinegar mixture. The videos are really helpful! I think cutting the california rolls was the hardest part. You have to constantly clean the knife of rice and keep it wet to saw through the roll. Also you must keep your fingers damp with water and vinegar while spreading the rice onto the nori wrap or you will have massive clumps of rice all over your hands.
On another morning cooking show I listened about Pumpkin Ravioli (smacking lips). Something I definitely want to try making Basic Pumpkin Ravioli. I also want to try Samosas, one of my favorite treats! Stephanie da Silva's Samosa collection. Vyanjanaa tells how you can use frozen puff pastry to make them! Don't Samosas sound like the perfect fall meal? (with Tamarind-Date sauce).
Anyway, it was great to break out some of the cookbooks and drool over the photos. ;)
I had a great day at work today. Got up a little later, got in a little later, left a little later. The pace of the day did not make my hair turn (more) grey. And I enjoy the sun and autumn trees at lunch. What more can a girl ask for?
Up at 6a, out of the house by 620a. At my desk working at 715a, skipped lunch and work right up 'til 430p. Braved the 430p 520 bridge traffic to deliver food (mom made) to a new mom (yeah Gael!), made a grocery store stop to buy some pumpkins and milk, squeezed in a $300, 15 minute detour by Bryn Walker in University Village, home to get tylenol and cram a bite of meat loaf in my mouth, off to M's school music event (of course, they sounded GREAT). I admit I pinched a piece of this red-berried bush that I was parked in front of at the High School. Sent D and M off the the storage unit to find my winter clothes box.
With all of my teeth gnashing about the lack of rain here ... I have to admit ... driving home in a sun-drenched afternoon enjoying golden yellow leaves twisting, sparkling in the trees, then later discovering a full moon staring back at me in a cloudless, dark blue sky ... was wonderful.
So I realize I am really not seeing the beauty in the moment lately. OK, I see it but I don't capture it, mentally. I haven't had time to go in search of it. I catch a glimpse driving to work, or walking outside at lunch... pieces of wonderful, daily beauty, happening silently around us. And I am trying to sit still and notice it while it happens. Yesterday I watched a small, red leaf, supended between it's beginning and earth by a invisible spider's thread. It hung there in the wind, spinning, twisting, turning as if by magic, red, yellow, red, yellow, red, yellow ...
Tonight, I left the grocery store to look up and see the biggest, brightest moon laughing back at me. And I laughed back at him!
It seems I am only taking photos behind the wheel of my truck. With my main computer down ... I am finding random photos on many different computers. I came home at dusk the other night dying to shoot something.
When it stopped raining in March about 4 years ago ... I asked, "Doesn't anyone find this a little odd?" Then it happened the next March and the rain didn't come in September like it had for 13 years. And now, here we are in October with blue skies and it worries me for the Pacific Northwest. Although it allows for some beautiful sunrises and sunsets ... it doesn't feel right somehow. It is suppose to be grey, with mist floating around mascarading as rain. The roads are suppose to be slick and the traffic even more terrible because we in the PNW don't know how to drive in rain. Folks that haven't lived here very long say, hurray, it isn't raining! But this area needs the moisture to maintain the lovely environment we have. And I worry.
Mr. Rainier with a reflection. Taken driving across 520 bridge ... so this is an artistic view. The sky was glorious and Mt. Rainier, which is rarely seen because of cloud cover, was clearly in view, reflecting in pink water.
Fortunately, I have something in my stashed images that I can revamp for this week's Illustration Friday. Online dating service personal profiles and anonymous internet relations can be hazardous in more than one way to your ego! Also, I thought this little invitation I did for K's baby shower was appropriate for this week's challenge.
Bush wants how much moremoney for the war? They can’t keep track with the billions they have all ready spent, somewhere … someone got a nice little payoff … "U.S. missing billion-dollar Iraq contract". The thought of corruption makes me sick. It seems more and more prevalent in this war. We are throwing away our future, our kids futures, on what?
I woke up last night hearing Gregorian chants. I smiled, with my eyes closed listened harder. I thought someone must be playing them in the house somewhere ... but it was very late and the house was dark and silent. I listened again and realized it was the wind whistling through the door making this beautitful noise. I slipped back into my dreams. The wind lifted me while I slept. I feel like I am missing fall this year ... it is going to fast. I need to take a walk today and drink some of the colors in before high winds sweep them away.
We had wonderful and wild wind storm starting at 2 p.m. yesterday. Although the prospect of trees falling across roads is frightening ... I still love it. I love extreme weather. And a wind storm here can be very scary and entertaining ... makes me feel totally alive.
I read Anne Dillard's "The Living" many years ago. A book about the arrival of the pioneering Fishburn family in Whatccom County in 1855. A window of how it would have been to live in Washington State, big, thick forrest, cold, windy days and nights. What would have been like to live in a small log home, comletely dark night with one of these wind storms howling right outside your door?
Stem first, they glide to earth catching a small current of fresh fall air. Some zig zag. Some plummet. Some twirl. Obedient ones fall right below the tree twirling noisily to earth.
I wrote this the other day at work while taking a break from my computer. I saw the leaves falling but then started paying closer attention to the patterns of their descent. It tickled me. And I stayed there a little longer to watch this act of nature. Those little falling leaves were really loud if you just took a minute to notice.
Another weekend spent working crazily ... that is the good part. The frustrating part is my main computer is completely out of commission and I have work due very soon. I had my mac fixed TWICE and it progressively got worse to the point where it will not even boot up. I filled the Apple customer survey email ... at which point I let them have it for not fixing my machine on the second try. (But I do love that particular store and employees). The machine sat at the top of the stairs for a week waiting for me to have time to make yet another trip there. I was very surprised to get a phone call from the manager of that store today asking about the condition of my computer, apologizing and telling me their store would be closed for a week for remodel. She suggested I take it to another store further away and made me an appointment. D took it there at the appointed time at which point the "genius bar" employee told him that THAT STORE was also closing for a remodel in two days and it would take weeks for me to get it looked at. He also looked at the work order from the last two trips in, the first was as they said, changed power supply and fixed cd drawer ($400=+). But then he revealed that the second time I took it in, they only checked to see if the power cord was plugged in securely. Ok, I might be a tech idiot in many ways --- but don't you think that was one of the first things I checked you A-Holes! My blood was boiling by then. Now I have two big freelance projects to work on and only two old macs ... on which I can't get the new printers to work. One doesn't have the programs I need on it because all of those millions of updated OS either are too updated to read my old software or not updated enough to read my software. Either way, it is going to be a stressful week. When are they all going to realize they make it too F-ing difficult for the average person to deal with. I don't want to be spend all of time being my own tech support ... I guess if I had not bought the used car, the new pc for his birthday gift, the new xbox and the new trombone he needed for jazz band ... I could have that G5 that I lust after everyday. As in all of life, we make decisions about how to funnel our money and this summer I put much of it into his wants and needs ... thinking I could get at least another year's worth out of my computer.
About my (sort of) new cell phone. Why do they keep changing the charging port? Why? Every cell phone we have in this house has a unique charging port .... and I couldn't find an additional charger for the car ... because Sprint didn't have one for their new phone, is that possible? On my one late day at work I run by Radio Shack to find one. Have done this for the last three weeks. Each one they sell me, or order for me does not fit. They finally hit pay dirt today ... and I have a car charger that works ... and they were nothing but helpful ... but my frustration is ... this is time spent driving to and from, standing at the counter while they research this ... my time that I can not get back.
Mom is still away with our friend, Susan, while she recovers from shoulder surgery. The house is in complete disarray. The floors around the washing machine, a foot high in clothes. We are eating out at Taco Bell ... Chinese ... pizza. M looks at me around 7p with that "what's for dinner" look and I have forgotten that we need to eat. And I turn the question back to him and say, yeah, what IS for dinner? We miss you, Mudder.
I wish I could talk about my two projects I am working on. I will say I am having fun. Realized today that I am so accustomed to churning out work at such a fast pace there is little time for the creative thoughtful time for organizing ideas, sketching, planning, researching. It is the same when I am off for a week and dying to do some assemblage art or something and get so frustrated because no ideas come in the first thirty minutes. Then after days of doodling, or cleaning up supplies, or thinking about it ... something comes to mind. It take time from beginning to end ... what I have been missing for some time is the middle part ... the actual creative process. So I have spent days now, drawing, thinking, experimenting. I might not get the jobs but it has been fun.
Today while grocery shopping I witnessed a very disturbing event that I can't get out of my head. Getting out of my car I heard a man yelling while getting in his car. I was trying to see who he was yelling at. I realized it was really angry, almost screaming. I saw a woman in the passenger seat and two kids in the back. This all happened in seconds. I was looking hard into the vehicle trying to make it all out. A little boys face was looking back at me. They drove off and I stood there at the store entrance horrified. Thought of getting his liscense number but what would I tell the 911 operator? I can't get that boys face out of my eyes. How can someone treat another person like that? How can someone scream at a mother in front of their children. I have seen verbal abuse up close and personal growing up. D has never raised his voice at us ... but I can tell you it would only take one time for someone to raise their voice at me or my son and that would be the one and only time.
Must go back to work. I ran outside to get a breath of backyard autumn air before the sun went down. This year is going by too quickly.
I had the hardest time choosing just 5 images to vote for on Illustration Friday's Open (for gallery show). I can tell you my first pick was Cin's wonderful bookplate. If you haven't seen the set, you should go look.
I have a new "space" mate at work (not really an office), a very talented guy (and his photographer partner) who introduced me to mary & lou ann jewelers. Love their work!
Tonight, I finally got to flip through the new issue of House & Garden ... while on the throne. Most of my magazine-reading time takes place there hence they are all piled in a teetering stack. Found Ann Carrington, Cora Ginsburg, Dulken & Derrick flowers, de Vera objects and Bardith. Thankfully, looking is free ;). I need to go make dinner and do some work. I don't know where this week has gone!
Had to share what I saw this morning. The rising sun over the Cascade Mountains set the sky ablaze bouncing color off glass enshrined skyscrapers creating a pink glow to the city of Seattle. The water was on fire. Mount Rainier set there calmly covered in fresh snow and one little cloud hovering above while we all enjoyed the show. Yes, I know I shouldn't be shooting while driving. But I was in traffic ;) I tried to crop out most of the cars, that is the depressing part.
I know most of us have felt like we have been through this procedure without the benefit of anesthesia. Open (Heart Surgery) for Illustration Friday. This week there is a twist, Illustration Friday gallery show ... with voting and to be part of a show at bookstore and art gallery in Long Beach Show opening November 3rd and displaing 25 IF entries. That is such a great idea. Go read more about it here ... and go enter your art! ;)
I am not sure I can keep this up as daily event. But I want to add a flower a day to a closer look at nature. I found this site from Jenny's a picture is worth a thousand words. It is a clean way to display one photo a day to reflect what is going on in my yard.
I sat at this computer all day, working. Trying to conjure up some logos for a startup that I can't discuss. I thought I had a few good ones, after about 50+ tries during the day. It was a good, quiet day of working, thinking. I like that. I wish had the idea that I just said, oh yeah, that is the one. But maybe that one will come tomorrow.
I cleaned out some of my email at 7 a.m. this morning. I should apologize for all the email I have not answered in months. And I think I know one of the reasons. I switched my email link on my blog ages ago to my mac.com account ... and all my email addresses are stored on my hotmail account (can't figure out how to export addresses from hotmail ... anyone know how to do that, please let me know). So I keep the mail thinking ... I will go look up that email and write her back. Hence, the 2,000 or so emails I have piled up there waiting for attention.
I also tried to come up with a couple of characters for illustrations for consideration for a book. (Another project I can't discuss). This one is a little tougher since I haven't really been illustrating lately. So I doodled frantically and realized I need to relax and have fun. Will continue my work on that tomorrow, in a relaxed, no-pressure mode ;)
M passed his last driving test with 9/11 driving school. And he has been lost in Halo 3 land since he got the new XBox ... off tonight for a big Halo party ... we are raising a little sniper ... aren't you proud, grandma?
The dogs are confused because mom is gone away to stay with a friend who is having shoulder surgery. They roam around looking for her to feed them (so do we).
D is doing laundry and enjoying a day of non-stop football on in the background. He has been getting up early every morning for an enjoyable physical therapy session for his recent shoulder surgery. I am sure that is better than a cup of coffee and he says it is much worse than the surgery.
And in between working, feeding the dogs, letting the cable repairman in ... I shot a couple of hydrangeas in RAW. I have a new ibook for work that has PS3 loaded on it which reads a RAW file. Didn't really have time to completely investigate it, but did open and save a few files out. That is very cool. I can see why everyone is so thrilled with it. I want to have a hydrangea set of postcards printed ... might just do that tonight!
It is cold, windy, rainy. Wind is rushing through our new french doors and gives the feeling of being much colder than it actually is. It is blustery enough that my precious Scooter does not want to venture downstairs ... he is very fragile. I carry him up and down the stairs in weather like this.
Have been thinking about being depressed and even fell asleep last night during a program on PBS about depression. I do not want to be the person I am right now. I find it hard to have conversations with people because I feel so down? useless? unimportant? I think having a couple of days of complete silence in front of this computer might help. Down time. Thinking time. Alone time. Our counselor (family counselor, who comes to our house to help us communicate with M better and make sure he stays on track with homework) says I should only be taking my "happy pills" to get me "up" enough to figure out what is really wrong. And then get off. I am telling him I think I should UP my dose. So we are not on the same page. I agree with him that my depression is a function of anger and frustration but even thinking or talking about it brings me to tears and makes me tired. Hence, I don't think or talk about it. I function. But lately, functioning without tears has become more and more difficult. I swear sometimes at work, I think my head is going to explode and I will have to go around picking bits and pieces of my brain off of fellow workers and keyboard. I am giving all of this thought as I sit here trying to design a logo and illustrate some happy flowers.
Here are a few of the hydrangeas I shot today. Besides, how could anyone think about being depressed after seeing these through their lens?
1. What TV show have you seen every episode of? I am positive I have watched every episode of I Love Lucy. If not way back when, then definitely when Matt was younger. We watched Nick at Night and he knew I Love Lucy was one of my favorites. Now, understand, he did not realize it was my favorite from when I was a child ... it would come on and he would call out "Mom, your favorite show is on". I didn't have the heart to tell him I had seen that one at least 20 times, so we would sit down, watch and laugh out loud. The Flintstones, Bewitched, Leave it to Beaver, Ozzie and Harriet and M.A.S.H.
2. What show makes you laugh until you cry? Definitely Seinfeld. That might be it, not wait! Absolutely Fabulous, Father Ted, Sex and the City ... have to check with my husband, he will remember what others. The Benny Hill show, way back when. SpongeBob.
3. What show do you wish had not been canceled? "Dark Shadows" (I guess I didn't realize that was classified as a soap opera) ... was my absolutely fave as a kid, they should bring it, the theme song was the best. I would still watch "The Avengers", even 40 years later. I loved that show. I was Emma Peel. How could I not list "The Odd Couple"? "Mission Impossible". Seinfeld, I wish it had gone on forever! "Chappelle's Show", although I don't that was officially canceled, I think Dave took a trip to Africa. "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" ... should come back!
4. What show do you wish WOULD be canceled? All AND I MEAN ALL of those reality TV shows ... The Bachelor (it makes me gag to think of that one guy hanging out in the hot tub with each woman at a different time whispering sweet nothings in her ear), the Loser, the Island one, the dancing one ... Ok, the two they can keep would be Project Runway and Amerca's Top Chef (and maybe the Designer one). But the others can go. The game shows, especially the one with the 101 girls dressed in silver mini skirts carrying metal cases ... fortunately, I can't think of the name of it right now.
5. Who is your favorite TV character, either past or present? Endora, Elizabeth Montgomery's mother on Bewitched. I adored her, and wanted to be her and have her hair. Inspector Poirot, the new, spunky, brandy drinking Agatha Christy's Miss Marple and Jane Tennison in Prime Suspect. I also like Hazel and Red Skeleton (as a kid), the Marshal on Gunsmoke.
I had to go here to remember some of these show. And you who want to add your two cents ... and what is and isn't favorite on your dial ... list them and leave a comment so I can read yours!
Someone emailed me this morning about a shoe pattern that was mentioned on my blog ages ago. So I went hunting. Shoe pattern from Kathy. She isn't blogging right now, but she a collection of images from the United States Patent and Trademark Office at Frankie Files.
Found lots of other fun stuff. Like this cute little bear and lot more sweet little paper craft downloads here (japanese site).
Yum, must try this, Cup ‘o Brownie from cook & eat, a tasty blog about photos and recipes. And Still Life with blog that I found via Athena's wonderful photos. She is linking to Plate It Up, a still life flickr pool, very fun. Makes me hungry and want to get out my camera.
Don't hate me for I am about to tell you. I come home every night with some delicious meal ready on the stove top. Not thanks to my culinary skills, but my mom ... who tirelessly conjures up with new and different dishes to feed us.
My favorite is Mexican food, as a result, we get lots of it. Tonight was Tortilla soup and some other bean, cheese, chili casserole which was delicious.
This week, we have been glued to Ken Burn's The War series, so have been eating many meals in front of TV. Lots of times, I just eat standing up in the kitchen. Boorish, I know.
Some of my favorites memories concerning food are nights coming home from a date. All lights off except the stove light. And there, with a towel covering it, my plate full of great food. waiting for me!