Saturday, December 29, 2007

Oyster Farmer clip

You'll go to hell for what your dirty mind is thinking

Oh, if that title were true, I'd be burnt to a crisp. As I believe I've mentioned before, I am constantly (well, often anyway) musing about the sexual potential of customers, various celebrities, random strangers, people I've known for years. It's the curse or blessing of my [almost] middle-aged hormones, I suppose. Today after seeing my favorite classical musician customer (looking especially fetching, I might add, despite his awful Coogi sweater), a couple of co-workers and I were talking about the subject. One of them freely copped to doing exactly what I do. (Which does amount, I admit, to objectifying a person nearly completely. So sue me.) The other co-worker claimed to have never done such a thing. She said that when she was in a relationship she never even thought of anyone else as attractive, let alone about doing wonderfully naughty things with them. Now that she's single I think her implication was that she's just too chaste to think that way. A load of bullshit or sadly true? Your guess is as good as mine with this chick. I had to listen to a verrrrrrrry long exposition about how her life is just like the life of a certain former very popular TV character. Very long. And, by the way, not so much.

I just finished reading "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter" by Carson McCullers. Man, I thought I liked her, but I could barely make myself finish this book. It was tortuously slow going but I didn't want to give up. Give me Flannery O'Connor, Harper Lee, Eudora Welty or, more currently, Donna Tartt, any day. Sorry Carson, but don't feel bad because I don't much like William Faulkner either.

I have all evening to myself and I'm going to spend it with my celebrity secret boyfriend, Alex O'Loughlin, watching The Oyster Farmer. Yum. I'll leave you with a lovely candid from ComicCon.

Friday, December 28, 2007

It was you breathless and tall, I could feel my eyes turning into dust

Guess I should have posted a picture of our little silver Christmas tree earlier, but I didn't. I've enjoyed it's flashing lights and tinkly ornaments, but I'll probably take it down in the next couple of days.

It's really kind of hard to believe that Christmas has already come and gone. This wasn't my jolliest of holiday seasons, but it was all right. Christmas day was actually pretty damn fun, particularly when my sister and I waged a furious boxing battle against each other with the Wii. She won, but it was by decision, not a KO, at least. It was nine minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise and much yelling and screaming. There was a threat of the entire thing being posted to Youtube, but it hasn't happened yet. Perhaps I'll post it, if I don't look too ridiculous. I've never wanted a videogame, but I think I'd like to have a Wii. The tennis, baseball and bowling had their charms as well. I wonder what else you can play on it? I could barely move the next morning though. That's some real exercise you get from the Wii.

I haven't cooked much lately, what with my foul moods and the holidays. But on this, my brief day off, I've baked a loaf of bread and made a ginormous pot of chicken noodle soup. Wanna see?

The house smells really good from the bread baking and the soup simmering. An added salad should make a lovely dinner.

Monday, December 24, 2007

You broke another mirror; you're turning into something you are not.

What a fucking day. Mid morning, at work, some sort of hormonal surge or something sent me into a total tailspin. It was everything I could do to keep from sobbing into the lattes. I'm not even sure what it was that set me off. Perhaps the fact that I have to work on so many holidays now. For the last 15+ years I haven't had to work between Christmas Eve and January 2 and it's just shocking to have no choice in the matter now. I'm feeling like I do nothing but work now; that all my life revolves around going to work. Can't stay out late because I have to get up at 3:45a the next day. Can't go to dinner because I have to work until almost 11:00p. Can't do anything but wait for the next shift to start. This job takes up way more of my energy than I expected and sometimes I really resent it. Today is definitely one of those days. I don't feel like I have a single bit of control over when I work and I hate that. Do I even have any vacation days? How long before they start accumulating? At my last job I walked in with three weeks vacation. God, I miss that. Sometimes I miss those regular hours too. Today is not a day that I value the variety this job provides. The only good thing that happened today is that I got to go home a couple hours early.

I need some serious Christmas cheer. Tonight we're celebrating with Steve's family, including his very ill youngest brother. I don't suspect it will be a terribly cheery event. Hopefully tomorrow with my family will improve my mood. Of course, I'm already fretting that I have to work on Wednesday at 4:45a...

Saturday, December 22, 2007

And I've had the breath of liars blowing me off course in my sails.

Why, after all these years and many instances of betrayal, am I still surprised and shocked and hurt when someone I thought I could trust proves to be, at the least, unreliable? So I was shocked the other day at work when I realized that I probably couldn't trust someone I thought I could. Now, I have no proof, but it suddenly became clear who was the likely culprit. It sucks and I of course will not trust this person again, but I do still like 'em. Sigh.

Last night we DJed at the Royale. The end of that evening has left me in a bad and rather angry (however futile) mood. Most of the night was entertaining and not all of the end was bad, but there were definitely big parts I could have absolutely done without.

Today I made more candy, wrapped a bunch of gifts and tried to figure out appropriate gifts, if any, for co-workers. I didn't do nearly enough work and I'm sure I have a zillion things to do before Christmas. I only work until early p.m. tomorrow so I guess there will be no rest for me on this Sunday.

Baking some more chicken tonight, with potatoes and buttered peas. Old school and simple.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

When you're near me I have difficulty concentrating

Well, the review went pretty well. It lasted, however, for almost three hours. My boss and I, when we have the opportunity, tend to talk. A lot. I feel pretty good about my place and confident that, even if I'm not always the most people-oriented person, I do a damn good job. It was important to me to know I was doing well. I'm kind of an overachiever that way. So, since I got home so much later than I thought I would, it was Papa John's pan pizza for us. The last two times we've had PJ's pizza, it was good. Really good.

Tonight I have spent too much time online stalking a customer I'm kind of obsessed with -- for no real reason (ok, well, he is pretty cute). At any rate, today I asked him what he plays and where he plays it. He's with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra but I'll keep the identity of his instrument confidential, just in case. All further info is from my online, er, research. He has been playing since he was three. Three! And his current instrument is nearly three hundred years old. How cool is that? Anyway, I've been around rock musicians for over half my life, but I've never known a classical musician. Kind of fascinating.

Now I have to put down my computer (I had to give her up to Roy for over 24 hours for some tweaking and I missed her sorely), get to the kitchen and figure out what I'm doing with some chicken quarters. I guess I'll bake them with garlic and other spices or something. There will be broccoli and maybe a sort of risotto. However, I don't know if I have the wherewithall for risotto as I have some killer cramps right about now. Update: I'm baking the chicken withbrown rice, mushrooms, shallots and broth. Hopefully it'll work out into something that tastesgood and doesn't take a gazillion minutes to cook. Oh, and the cramps are abating.

Speaking of Roy, I wish I had a picture of him sitting on our couch with his legs crossed (guy-style -- can't think of what else to call it), with Foxy Brown's eyes and snout peaking through the open triangle of leg that results from that position. She stared intently at him and he just stared back. I laughed and laughed.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Oh lord deliver us from the elements

Yesterday I managed to squeeze in one more cookie recipe: paper thin oatmeal lace cookies. Really tasty, but a total pain in the ass to make. Plus they are extremely delicate, another pain. Again, at least they taste good.

Dinner tonight was easy: turkey smoked sausage roasted with potatoes and Thai ginger carrots from Trader Joe's.

Tomorrow I get to work eight hours and then submit to a performance review. Oh boy. I'm afeared my occasional lack of people skills might come up. Maybe. How to prepare? Expect the worst, be happy with what I get. Deal with it constructively? I'll try my best.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Why oh why do you treat me like a snowman

I have been a neglectful blogger. I just haven't had time these last few days. Let's see, to catch up with dinner reports, we weren't home together at dinner time last Thursday; and on Friday night we had pork pad thai from King & I. On Saturday I reprised the portabella cream pasta from Steve's birthday which we had with a simple romaine and tomato salad. Yum. Last night I made a pot of chili that turned out quite nicely. I cooked a batch of pinto beans in the pressure cooker, then made a big batch of chili using languiza sausage (sort of like chorizorizo). Topped with grated cheese and oyster crackers, it was great with a bottle of merlot.

Today is Christmas baking and cooking day. So far I've made lemon cornmeal poppyseed cookies, chocolate almond biscotti drizzled with white chocolate, milk chocolate chip cookies, sugar cookies (chilling in the fridge but not yet baked), cream cheese mints, white chocolate nut clusters and I'm getting ready to prepare a chocolate walnut buttercrunch toffee. Who knows what else I can squeeze in.

Dinner tonight will be leftover chili. Maybe chili mac using leftover plain pasta from Saturday...

Oh, and I hate snow. Yeah, yeah, it's pretty for about an hour, then it freezes to ice and makes driving in the City hazardous and horrible..

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Snipping snipping snipping goes the scissors man

After work yesterday morning I dashed down the street to the library to return some overdue books. When I came out of the library I noticed that one of my back tires was very flat and, indeed, had a tear on the side. All of my plans for the day went out the window as I headed to the tire place to get some replacements. I knew the damage was going to be bad; after all, my car is sort of a sports car (well, I guess it is a sports car) and those tires always cost more. So, $342 and two (yes, only two) tires later, I didn't feel like doing much other than going home.

A brief stop at the grocery store led to this dinner last night: Beef and bean tacos in whole wheat soft tortillas with cheese, tomatoes, green onions and salsa. Refried beans and cheesy rice on the side, all washed down with a peachy sauvignon blanc. Oh, and a toffee almond chocolate bar for dessert.

All eaten whilst watching the happy return of Life on Mars on BBC America. I would give you a link here except that the flash-heavy BBC America site gives my poor little clamshell agita.

Monday, December 10, 2007

And where's the sense in recompense when recompense don't make no sense at all

Today I came home from work. lazed around a bit and then added highlights to my hair. Then I went back to doing nothing. Just the way I like it. What with flashes and other lighting it's hard to get a decent picture of highlights, but I tried.

Well, the highlights are there; just too subtle to see in that picture.

Dinner tonight was a bit of an experiment, in a French vein. I tossed romaine lettuce with a dressing made of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, shallots and Dijon mustard. I heaped the salads with cubed potatoes and leftover roast pork fried crispy. And on top of the whole shebang, fried eggs with runny yolks. Seriously, it is a rather traditional French thing to put a fried egg on top of a salad. At any rate, it was quite good.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

But I can't help the feeling I could blow through the ceiling if I just turn and run

Wow. I was having a serious bad day when I wrote that last entry. Honestly, I'm not even sure why I reacted so strongly to the causative events. Thank goodness things seemed much better by the next day and have remained so. Some day work will settle into being completely routine. It's not there yet, but surely it will happen, right? Does routine ever exist in retail? I have no idea.

So in the last week I struggled very much with the idea of making jewelry for Ziezo. In general I haven't felt very inspired these last several weeks. The pressure of making something cool enough for that store on top of the stress I felt over not having any good ideas topped out about mid-week. I wasn't feeling my most confident and I pretty much let my fear of being criticized make the decision that perhaps this wasn't the best time for me to try for a consignment deal at there. I didn't feel great about the decision (I don't enjoy being so thin-skinned), but there was a certain amount of relief.

Pair that with going to the Rock and Roll Craft Show VIP party (thanks, Dana, for making me your date for the evening!) on Friday night and whatever creative genes I have are hanging their little DNA heads low. I opted to not participate in RnRCS this year because I just didn't, again, feel inspired to crank out that much stuff. Was that a mistake? Last year I was a top 5 seller and this year walking around and looking at all the great stuff and not seeing any of my things made me feel a little regretful and kind of sad. Ah well, I never dwell long on regrets as it's a useless waste of energy, so I'm getting over it. I really can't imagine when I would have had time to do enough for the show anyway.

Today I woke up with energy to do some cleaning and rearranging. We traded the huge futon in the living room with the mid-century sectional piece upstairs and I'm so happy we did it. I cleaned up the upstairs sitting room, finally took all my craft show junk out of the front foyer (suddenly our downstairs has basically gained a room), AND, most importantly, put up our silver Christmas tree. We haven't bothered with a tree the last couple of years and I really missed it, I guess. Oh and I did the laundry and dyed my hair brown. Not bad for a day.

I've decided to start chronicling what I cook. Tonight for dinner: Roasted pork "country ribs" slathered in steak marinade. Roasted sweet potato chunks with olive oil and parmesan cheese. Green beans with a sauce of butter, shallots, balsamic vinegar and a pinch of sugar.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Only love can bring the rain that falls like tears from on high

How do you blow off a day that divebombed into shitty, shake off a pariah label, and start over fresh the next day? Seriously, how?

I so miss the days of never having to leave my house or interact with other humans.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I fought the law and the law won

Many weeks ago I got a speeding ticket in U City on my way to work at the store whose name we will not mention. Because I didn't want any points on my license or for our insurance to go up (again - I got a highway speeding ticket a few months prior), we did the lawyer thing and got the ticket knocked down to some sort of parking violation. It still cost plenty, paying the lawyer fees and the still not inconsiderable fine. I thought everything was fine and dandy and taken care of. So the other night I'm driving home from work at 10:45p and I call home to check in. Steve announces, haltingly, that something must have happened to the check he sent because there is now a warrant out for my arrest for unpaid fines in U City. OK, I know these things are commonplace, but I have never had a warrant out for my arrest and it's kind of unnerving. Today we have to go to the U City court clerk and pay it in person. Of course, since it's "late" we have to pay more. Whole lot of old bullshit and the last thing I want to spend what little free time I have these days.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

What if I fell to the floor, couldn't take all this anymore

Here's what I started with around noon today. I thought I'd pull out most everything I have and hope for some inspiration.

It looks more contained in the photo; it felt kind of chaotic, but then my work areas usually are. I'm not a particularly tidy worker. I'm always organized in my own way, I guess. Anyway, five and a half hours later I had made these four necklaces.

I'm pretty happy with them. I wish I could have worked faster and got more done, but alas, I was a slowpoke today.

What I discovered today is that I clearly favor a certain color palate without even realizing it. I most always mix my own clay colors and that was no exception the other day. What I was sort of surprised to learn is that I had beads to match already. Makes me feel a little predictable, but I suppose that's not the issue. More so that I have a color point of view, I guess. I do know I love rich golds and reds and especially blue-greens and turquoises paired with browns.

Anyway, whether these are Ziezo material or not, I do not know.

Monday, November 26, 2007

And this is not our fate

Well, I painted 'em and I like them (well, most of them anyway). But I probably should have left some of them plain. Or not. Success will depend on the necklace portion, I'm guess.

You and I we've been through that

Yesterday afternoon I worked on some new pendants, this time using the gin-transfer image transfer method (yes, you actually use gin) with some images, mostly clipped from vintage children's books. I think I'm going to try to add some color with paint, but I'm not sure I can pull it off. As with the previous pendants, I intend for the necklace part to be beaded in some way. Who knows what I'm going to end up with.

(At least two of the photos aren't terrible.)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Well i'd a danced like the queen of the eyesores

Because I'm sort of wasting time and avoiding making any jewelry, I thought I'd post some photos of the lovely pottery I bought yesterday.

Here's everything. And another view here:

I treated myself to a couple of pieces: the big bowl (which is a more beautiful shade of red than shows in the photo) and the handle bowl.

I got this vase as a gift for my sister-in-law. The green glaze almost exactly matches the color she painted their dining room.

And heck, here's a couple more close-ups of other pieces.

I really do need to get to work here. At least I've gotten these pendants done. I'm not sure if I like them though.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

And I'm looking for that free ride to me

How is it possible that Thanksgiving has come and gone already? And with Thanksgiving came winter, full force. It's cold. Real cold. Today was the Craft Alliance pottery sale and I made the mistake of attending this outside event sans hat and gloves. It was freezing and definitely cut short my shopping time, but I still got some good stuff this year. The Craft Alliance sale has kicked off my xmas shopping season for many years now. If only all holiday shopping was so easy.

The week has been fairly uneventful. We celebrated Steve's birthday with a nice dinner on Monday, but haven't really had much time for each other this week. Besides the dinner on Monday I was making paper goods, a task which continued into Tuesday evening. Wednesday I had to make the delivery to Subterranean and then be asleep early as I had to work a very early shift on Thanksgiving morning. I had to work a few hours last night but it was more fun than work as it wasn't at all busy and I got to work with one of my favorite co-workers (who happens to share a wee bit of my Alex O. obsession). It really was more of a social occasion than working - perfect! Now I have two days off in a row and I swore I was going to work on jewelry ideas for Ziezo. Well, it's after 2p and I've only watched TV and sat on the computer. Sigh. If only I could be a crafting machine.

Tonight is the long awaited Battlestar Galactica Razor movie, meant to tide us faithful over until the real season starts in the spring. Yay, BSG! And a BSG that features Lee Adama (Jamie Bamber)!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Going to a Gocco

Today I threw caution to the wind, fear of mistakes and failure went out the door and I broke out the Gocco to make some greeting/note cards to put on consignment at Subterranean Books. I spent much of the day yesterday avoiding the Gocco, though I did finalize a Christmas card design. I was just too afraid to actually use the machine yesterday. Which turned out to be completely foolish because it is so easy to use and get good results. Check out my bird card (which will be further embellished with hand-painted elements) and my guitar design card. Like everyone else who gets one, I LOVE MY GOCCO! I also found this really nice pearlescent card stock, though you can't really see that in the photo.

Now I need to get my ass in gear and into the kitchen to start cooking Steve's birthday dinner of grilled shrimp, salad and portobella cream pasta.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Beware of the bottles that say "drink me"

Mostly getting older isn't so bad. A lot of things are put into better perspective simply with time, I'm kind of enjoying the texture and sheen the greys are adding to my hair, sex just gets better and better, and I've stopped worrying what other people think (honestly, though, on that front I've never cared much). However, some of the physical aspects, not so much. I've had arthritis for well over a decade now (thanks, Grandma A.!), I often feel creaky in the morning, my body has changed shape (I suppose very very vigorous workouts could only slightly alter that), my periods are rather troublesome (heavier and with teenage-stylee [i.e., bad] cramps) and various other aches and pains have taken hold. Lately I have had a weakness and slight pain in my left arm. Today that pain has intensified. At work this morning it was a sharp ache that has now changed into a dull ache with a sort of numbness down my arm. Should I do something about it or hope it goes away, my usual m.o.? I feel sort of like age demands that I pay more attention to these things just in case. I guess I will if this continues. My arms hurts and it's making me a little crabby. At least it's my left arm.

Maybe this will make me feel better. Screen caps from the latest episode of Moonlight.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Can you see the real me, can you?

Work has been way more good than bad lately. I've actually had fun at work; a genuine good time. And as of today, the main source of stress is no longer a factor and I couldn't be more relieved. Even the fact that the ceiling of the store started leaking today and I got a call because the supervisor who came on after me *lost* my till drop bag - the one he insisted I leave lying on the counter rather than dropping it in the safe. Let's hope that one doesn't come back to bite me on the ass. But I am sanguine about it because, mostly, work life is good.

So, I got my vampire, Mick St. John ring from Sterling Silver Art and I'm in love with it. Thank you, Blue! See for yourself:

Yet another crappy picture. The batteries in my camera are shot, I'm lazy and so I only have about two tries to get a decent photo. Not that the above abomination qualifies as decent, but you get my drift. Anyway, I think the ring is gorgeous - it's huge and heavy and shiny.

And so we get to the cheesecake portion of our program.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

When I watch you move and I can't think straight

Remember Mazzy Star? Remember their album So Tonight That I May See, a lovely (and perhaps the best) example of dream pop? Anway, here they are performing "Into Dust" from an episode of 120 Minutes.

Nothing much up in these parts. As I type I can smell my delicious turkey meatloaf cooking away in the oven and the potatoes boiling on the stovetop. Hungry! Work has been somewhat uneventful -- always a good thing. The social life has been non-existent mostly. I love my husband and he's going to look really good in his new jeans (they arrived today!) and coat.

Moonlight kind of got on my nerves this week. I really can't stand Shannyn Sossamon much and she was at the forefront. Boo hiss to Coraline storylines. Alex O. looked kind of awful with his 50s pompadour and tropical shirt in the flashback scenes. Clothes and hair often do make the man.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Crawl like the worm from a bird

I placed three online orders yesterday and now I'm already impatient to have the stuff. I ordered some nice, low-rise Levi's for Steve (do you know how hard it is to find cool jeans for a 6'8" man?), a gorgeous wool 3/4 coat for Steve (do you know how hard it is to find cool outerwear for a 6'8" man?), and the closest and most affordable version of the vampire ring for myself. I love and hate ordering online. Love it for the obvious reasons (access, variety, etc.) but I hate to wait for delivery (and I'm too cheap to opt for anything other than the least expensive shipping).

And now I think I'll post more pictures, screen captures actually, of Moonlight and Alex O.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Just being human is so lame

OK, first off off let me say I just discovered a strange, lumpy, itchy bite on the inside of my thigh, surrounded by what appears to be bruising. What the fuck? It's itching like crazy. But that's neither here nor there. Unless, of course, I die from it.

Second, it's been a hell of a long time since I've written. I've spent plenty of time doing useless things on the computer lately, but I guess I didn't feel up to putting any actual sentences together.

My 44th birthday has come and gone. Good times were had at Tucker's that evening. Mostly fruitless shopping was done that day. I still haven't really picked out a gift from Steve, though I'm in search of a particular silver ring, as seen on TV (I'll get to that in a minute). I did get some fab black sheep fleece-lined boots (Ugg style) and some similar clogs with bday money from my mom. Love love love the boots. Will probably wear them for some part of every day until May when it gets too hot for them.

The biggest birthday suprise was from Dana. At the tail end of a really great dinner out at Vito's (plenty o' delish wine and pizza) she presented me with a large gift wrapped box. To my absolute surprise and and GIGANTIC delight, inside was a Print Gocco, a Japanese screen print kit designed to make small designs on paper. I have been coveting one of these for quite some time and Dana had tried to wrangle a couple for us last year. When she cancelled her business trip to Japan this fall, I figured I would just wait till the next time she went. Well, she managed to get her co-workers to acquire the kits and so completely generously gave me mine for my birthday. I was stunned and so completely pleased. Now I just hope I can create some good things with it. I have a Christmas card design envisioned...

In the past few weeks I have become OBSESSED with the TV show Moonlight and its star, Alex O'Loughlin. OB-SESSED. I've searched zillions of Internet pages to find a ring like his character wears, not to mention trolling the fan pages for tidbits of useless information. Seriously, Alex is one of the hottest (if not the hottest) actors I've ever seen. He pushes my buttons, you could say. Check him out for yourself.

The show isn't great, but it has a few things going for it. One is, well DUH, do you have eyes? Secondly, the character played by Alex, Mick St. John, is a vampire PI. I've read a good amount of vampire fiction, seen the movies and have eroticized vampires for a very looooooong time now. (Oh, in how many fantasies have I uttered "turn me, please turn me!" to my vampire paramour?) Third, the female lead, Sophia Myles, certainly isn't terrible to look at. And fourth, a supporting character, a 400 year old vampire pal of Mick's, is played by Jason Dohring, also known as bad boy Logan from Veronica Mars. Jason's pretty much playing the same character, albeit with better clothes. Love him, though he sort of looks like a boyish boy next to the uber manly manliness of Alex.

Anyway, I suppose one of the reasons I have so totally immersed myself in this show and that gorgeous man is that it's a stress deflector. My stupid job continues to stress me out on too many occasions though I am trying to let other people's stupid shit slide off of me. That's never been my forte, but I know I can't do it any other way any more or I'll just be a big pile of upset nerves. Wish me luck, huh?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

And your bird can sing

I got an early birthday present from my old and dear friend Jeff last week. This gift is on the all-time great gifts list. Even though Jeff and I haven't spent much time together in many years, he managed to give me something perfect. How cool is that? I've always wanted a Kit Cat Clock, but I've never found a vintage model nor did I want to buy a new one. Jeff presented me with the best Kit Cat Clock model I've ever imagined.

Forgive my lousy photograph of this avocado green, bejeweled and bow-tied clock. Isn't it fabulous?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I'll be your knight in shining arrrrrr-mor

Tomorrow morning marks the very last installment of my radio show, Emotional Rescue, on KDHX. I really, really need the hiatus from my show, but I am kind of sad that I had to resign completely. I had hoped to get a long leave of absence, but the program committee thought it was too long of a time to keep that slot open. They assure me that I should be able to get back on the air when I get my radio mojo back. Maybe six months or so from now? So, it's a bittersweet thing. I will, of course, miss it, but on the other hand, I'm happy to get rid of the obligation for the time being.

Work is leveling out, sort of. Nothing will change the fact that I love love love the location and that the store is fabulous looking, but the getting to know each other phase is rather tedious. Fitting into a tight knit group is a challenge, that's for sure.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Odds and sods

As part of the stock of needle felted wool pins I took to the Sheldon, I included two of the birds I recently started making. I got an email from the director yesterday saying they had both been purchased internally and could I make some more. It's always nice to have actual demand for your stuff! When I dropped off six more birds this morning I saw that several of my items were already displayed -- and I must say they looked fabulous! Seriously, I almost didn't recognize my things. Not that I don't think my stuff is fabulous, but still! Keep your fingers crossed for lots o' sales.

On a completely different topic, I am often fascinated by the Hollywood casting process and the competition that must ensue between actors (see my post about Colin, Joel and Mark). So here's the female equivalent to those three guys. I'm talking about Lindsay Frost, Kate Vernon and Andrea Roth. They range from 40-46 and all have a similar look. I think Lindsay has had the most exposure in mainstream Hollywood, but Andrea manages to be good despite the extreme misogny of Rescue Me and Kate was perfect as Ellen Tigh in Battlestar Galactica. See what you think.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Mystery Dance

OK, here's a confession that won't be too much of a surprise to anyone who knows me well - I get way too emotionally involved in things that I shouldn't. Despite the fact that I may appear detached and even removed, inside I'm often roiling. It's stupid and causes me a lot of unnecessary agita. I know that, but what can I do about it? The ups, the downs; it's like little mini cases of bipolar disorder. "Don't take it personally" is one of the most absurd things I can hear. I take EVERYTHING personally. It's a curse.

So I expected twirling bluebirds and angels singing on my first day at the new store. OF COURSE I should have known better. And it wasn't terrible, or even bad. It just wasn't great. I am not at my best around lots of people for extended periods of time so by the time I left work yesterday I felt kind of like a failure. It's clear that lots of bonding has gone on and I'm way outside the circle and that makes me feel weird and kind of bad. Oh well, it can only get better, right?

Per my last entry, I found myself immobile when it came to making new paper products for Subterranean. I did manage to make some cute tags and packaging for my Sheldon galleries stuff. Check out their opening this Friday from 5-7p. The boutique will be making its debut that night. Free drinks and food to boot!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Vapour Trail

I'm in a bit of a panic. In the space of about 10 minutes this afternoon I committed to having new blank cards and books for the consignment space at Subterranean Books by next Monday and having all the stuff I want to put in the Sheldon Galleries boutique ready to deliver by Tuesday. I have to really think about the the way my jewelry will be presented to make the most of it. I also think my little needle-felted bird pins will work there too. And I also want to make a new batch of the multi-strand scarves. Yikes. Luckily I have a three day weekend ahead of me to work on everything. I'm gonna need it.

Countdown to the CWE: two more days of work in UCity and then new store on Monday for opening on Wednesday!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Bye bye Pippin

Yesterday Steve came home from work to find that our 9+ year old parakeet, Pippin, had died sometime during the evening. Pippin was a sweet, shy little bird who loved to sing along with the birds outside. A few weeks ago we realized he wasn't singing anymore. A few days ago he let loose with a very short outburst of song and then nothing. I guess we should have figured that something was up, though I'm not sure what we could have done. Her certainly lived a fairly long parakeet life and survived a homicidal mate who tried her best to simultaneously mate and murder. Parakeet sex is not a tender thing, take it from me.

We will miss you and your songs very much Pippin. Who will bite Steve's nose now?

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Nothing clings like ivy

Except for perhaps morning glory vines. Morning glory has taken over our front yard, as you can see from these photos. I'm happy to report that I figured out how to download my camera directly to my iBook and even managed to manipulate the photos via iPhoto. I'm still not quite down with how Macs save files, etc. I don't know how to put them in particular places but I think that's part of how Macs work. A primer from Roy is in order. Anyway, this first picture is of our front steps. The morning glory vines have enveloped the rose bush, the garlic chives, the sage, the hearty hibiscus and the railings. Believe it or not, I've torn down the vines a few times this year. They just come back stronger. Unfortunately, the lovely purple blossoms don't show up very well, but it's what keeps them around.

The vines have even entwined themselves around and up a 12 foot red bud tree, not to mention a large rose of sharon bush and my hydrangea. I'm still not sure whether it was the late freeze this spring or the morning glory that prevented even one hydrangea flower from blooming.

This morning Steve and I went to a flea market at St. Mark's in St. Louis Hills. Strangely enough there wasn't a lick of clothing, although there were shoes. Best buy of the day was this four-panel set of barkcloth curtain for $4. The color scheme is perfect for the living room, besides being just beautiful - turquoise, brown, black and (subtle) metallic gold.

In the close up you can sort of see that the repeated pattern is a scenic view out the terrace of an English or Italian villa. I mean, you've seen this terrace in any number of Jane Austen and E. M. Forster movie adaptations.

For $1 I bought a zipper bag full of 'broken' jewelry. Included were these three vintage bracelets, all wearable, if missing a stone here and there.

These earrings were also in the bag -- daisy cages!

And to add to my ever-growing collection, a gorgeous hand embroidered pillow case with fillet crochet trim. For 50 cents!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

You said something

Where has this week gone? It's already Thursday, fer crissakes. I've attempted to make an entry every other day this week, to no avail. Nothing to say, not enough time, yadda yadda yadda.

Yesterday was rather more action-packed than my days off from work have been of late. I ran to the craft store to buy lots of sale yarn first, then to buy gas at the northside gas station that has consistently cheap prices (though I was kind of thwarted on that front yesterday), then downtown to have lunch with my former co-worker Erica. I stopped in at the old homestead and said hi to a couple of other folks and am glad to say I didn't get one iota of longing to be back in an office (no matter how crazy my current work life has been). It was great to see Erica, however briefly. Note to self: make more time to see friends! After lunch I headed to the Smiley Urgent Care Center to FINALLY get my legally-required hepatitus A vaccine. And damn if that vaccine didn't use the fattest needle I've ever seen. Ouch. The nurse shamed me by chiding, "I haven't even done anything yet!" because of my tensed arm. I think she was trying to psych me out though, because I'm certain the needle was already in. Anyway, she had to hold her finger over the injection site for a minute to staunch the blood and to "get the vaccine to stay in". What????? I don't think she was lying -- I could actually feel the shit traveling down my arm. And that wasn't a good thing. It felt like a slow ache flowing down to my fingers. My left arm has had just about enough of injections, what with the tetanus shot a couple weeks ago. Sheesh. After the shot I wanted to take a look at my [anxiously awaited] new store location in the Central West End. The door was open and the guys were working away with Soundgarden blaring. The basic construction was done; they were painting and doing other finishing work though there's still a lot of clean up and things to complete. The front counter and back cabinetry was complete and the tiles were down, mostly. Funny how it looks smaller with actual stuff in the space. : )

To celebrate my great sales of the weekend, Steve and I went to Tucker's Place on Tuesday night. When we were more flush with discretionary income, we dined at Tucker's almost once a week. I had been missing it terribly lately, so it was the perfect place to go. So maybe I don't have a lot (or hell, any) experience at the expensive steakhouses in town, but I know a delicious steak and I can't imagine any better tasting sirloin than what you consistently get at Tucker's. And even though they claim to not do anything special to their baked potatoes, they are the sweetest, creamiest backed spuds I've ever tasted. Of course we go to the original Soulard location. Tuesday nights dinner was no exception. Everything was perfectly delicious even though I wavered and chose a pinot grigio instead of my usual merlot and Steve ordered a Smithwick's because Tucker's had replaced his beloved Bass on tap (he was not disappointed, by the way).

Counting today, I have eight more work days left at my temporary location. Or maybe less. I could take a little smaller paycheck for a day off during the week next week. Otherwise I'll be working seven days straight and that isn't my top choice. But whatever. I'm sure I'll miss aspects of the store and some of the people so I may as well get my fill, right?

Now I need to do something useful and work on some new scarves for my next crafty outing, which is putting a bunch of stuff on consigment at the Sheldon Galleries boutique. I feel a bit of pressure about this one...

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Oh Happy Day!

Notwithstanding the sunburn on my back and my current utter exhaustion, what a happily successful day it was in O'Fallon, IL at the Strange Folk Festival. I sold a ton of stuff, a ton! At times it seemed liked people were throwing money at me. Woo hoo!

After a rather unsuccessful May in which my two Olde Crafte Boothe forays resulted in very little proceeds, I was kind of nervous about putting my stuff out there again. I don't suppose I'm unique in thinking of everything I make (well, maybe not everything) as my little children. I know I've witnessed other crafters saying goodbye to their products as they walk away in the arms of someone else. Anyway, I was worried, but damn, I didn't need to be. It was a relief and kind of gratifying to know I'm still making stuff people want.

It was a great event, overall. The hard working Autumn organized everything perfectly -- set up was completely painless and except for the absolutely horrid jam-type band that played waaaaaay too long, it was smooth running and effortless on the part of the vendors.

Eventually I will have pictures to post that Dana took, but for now, this is it!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Life of Riley

What does that even mean?I dunno where it originates, but it's what I'm living right now. What am I talking about? Well, I'm writing from the couch while watching TV. On the intarnet and watching television all at the same time. Even better, I'm using my neighbor's unsecured wi-fi service to do it. Now, I understand that I'm way behind the times here, but it's new to me. And while I'm not using my own laptop right now, I will be using my own beautiful, vintage Mac blueberry tomorrow morning thanks to my talented friend Roy. So does everyone drag their laptops around everywhere with them when they first get them? I can see myself doing it. Ten minute break at work? Get out the laptop. Doctor's office (as if I ever go to the doctor!)? Pull out the laptop!

How will I pull myself away from my new 'puter to work on all the zillion things I have to do to get ready for Strange Folk? It won't be easy, but I have to get myself prepared and ready to go by 6:30am on Saturday morning. Last year, the morning of SF dawned with cold weather and rain rain rain. It stopped raining early in the day, but even the rain didn't stop customers from coming. This Saturday's predicted sun and 85 degrees should guarantee a great crowd. It's been weeks and weeks since I've sold anything so it will be interesting to be out there again. Plus, my job has given me a lot of experience dealing with customers so maybe I won't be such a spazz anymore.

OK, this is a complicated Burn Notice I'm watching, so I gotta go.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Turn off your mind, relax...

Oh, if only that were possible.

I tried to make an entry last week, but the computer and I were waylaid by an errant iPod and a ridiculously misbehaving iTunes. By the time I got done [unsuccessfully] wrasslin' with the Apple products I had no energy for anything else. Grrr.

At this point I only have two and a half weeks left at my temporary work location. Can I get an "amen" out there? Soon soon soon I will be in the wonderful Central West End. I have been through some kind of crazy days at work lately. Some good crazy, some really really bad crazy. I'm looking forward to some more, shall we say, level, days.

This week (and last) I've been concentrating on getting prepared for Strange Folk on Saturday. I haven't sold my stuff since May, so I'm nervous and anxious and excited to be back in the tent again. The weather report is promising and if all goes well I may even be able to take credit card payments!!! Get your plastic ready, ladies and gentlemen!

So, on to some pictures. First, a spread of the needle-felted pins I've feverishly worked on the last few days.

More leaf plates from last week. How in the world am I going to transport these somewhat fragile items?

I guess that's all I got today! I think I need a nap before work.