Friday, November 28, 2008

Tasty Recipes

Temporarily no questions in the help centre (well, few... I had one interruption already), so here's a few recipes that look really yummy:
oven roasted asparagus
spicy orange garlic shrimp
Now if only I had the time to cook...

Found on Flickr

caramel and ice

Mmmm... lots of lovely buttons to look at. :)

Found on Flickr

Buttons - house and trees


Found on Flickr

My Gnomies!

Adorable! (And a mushroom too!)

Found on Flickr

Stone steps

Gorgeous photo! Vicki sure takes lovely photos.

Found on Flickr

Alpaca forest

Oooo... pretty...

Found on Flickr

Green flower hat

So sweet!

Found on Flickr


I love the geometric pattern and pretty colours!

Found on Flickr



I seem to be a sucker for mushrooms... here's two tutorials (for other cool mushrooms) I wouldn't mind trying out:
Toadstool Cottage
Fimo Toadstool
(There always seems to be way more cool things to do than time to do them...)

Found on Flickr

Felt Carrot

Hee! Awesome! Very realistic too. :)

Found on Flickr



Found on Flickr



Found on Flickr



Found on Flickr

blossom button

What a lovely flower button! (I think I have several of this lady's buttons in my blogging queue.)

Post Inundation Warning

I just thought I'd warn you that I'm going to try to catch up on my "Found on Flickr" posts, because I need to close some of my open browser windows. ;) The number will probably only be limited by how many I can get done before lunch. Feel free to read or skip, whichever you personally prefer.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I killed what I think is a silverfish in my apartment. (It was rather unidentifiable after I stomped on it.) This makes two now... one in my bathroom, and one in my kitchen. :( I spent some time researching the creepy crawlies tonight.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Weather Report

About the middle of last week things got pretty cold around here. The longjohns came out, and frost made my apartment completely private. Then a high pressure system moved in, giving me a two day killer headache and bringing warmer weather. The headache and frost are now gone. I miss the frost, but not the headache.

The temperature in my apartment is kind of hard to control... I like it somewhat warm during the day, but somewhat cool at night. I think the caretaker turns the boiler up at night, and down during the day. It sure would be nice to have temperature sensors on the radiators.

For future weather related headaches, does anyone have any recommendations? I tried fluids, chocolate, and painkillers, none of which seemed to have a significant effect. Paying attention to the barometer, higher pressure tends to correspond to "hurty" (head, joints, something), and lower pressure to "non-hurty", although I did have a "hurty" day one day when there was low pressure.
Antique? Barometer

Hmm... I should have kept my mouth shut... my right temple is twinging somewhat...


Note to self: charge clippers *before* starting to clip hair.

PS: I seem to have misplaced my morning... if anyone happens to notice a spare Sunday morning lying around, I'd really appreciate having it returned to me. Or if you happen to know where I can get spare weekend days...

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I'm having a happy, relaxing morning. I slept until after 9, then lazed in bed until around 10, and now I'm slowly getting up. After I'm done this post I'll wash the shower and shower myself too (I always do the shower when I'll be getting wet anyway), and then start laundry. (And then after the laundry, I'll start bread baking, wash the dishes, and maybe get some more floors swept too.) At 3:30 I'll head over to the art show to see the people's choice winners and to pack up my stuff. Finally, I'll finish up any remaining laundry, then go over and sand the desk uprights. (Busy day!)

My downstairs neighbour started playing music around 11 pm last night. At first it was at a level that was clearly audible in my living room, but muffled enough in my bedroom, but by 3 am I had to go down and knock on his door. (After that it wasn't a problem.)

Eight mega-pixels is enough resolution that I can count my dad's nose hairs, if I wanted too. (I didn't upload the full-size images.)

The art show is going well. Friday was hectic in the payment area, but Saturday was slow. (I even dozed a bit... I didn't care if people thought I was strange. I was *tired*, and they could wake me up if a credit card came through.) Here's my display, sans the secret series:
My Display
and here's the view I had from the payment area:
Art Show
(Swatchy says hi.) I got lots of really nice compliments on Saturday, and even sold out of one style of card... although I only started with nine to begin with. (I assembled six more last night.) Two of my paintings even appear to be in the running in the acrylics category. :)

I love the painting of the Witch's Hut by Tom Andrich:
Witch's Hut by Tom Andrich
The Witch's Hut is a structure in Kildonan Park, in Winnipeg. I bought a gorgeous painting by another member of the club... I didn't take a close-up photo of it yet, though. (I left it hanging until the end of the show.) There's another I'm contemplating, and several more I'd love to have, but are out of my budget (including the above painting).

There's a new house going up near my apartment, on part of a large lot that the owner split:
Neighbourhood Construction
I believe that's the floor of the main floor... it sure is high off the ground!

Well, I should go take care of cleaning both me and the shower so that I can then get the laundry started. :)

Friday, November 14, 2008


Life is still hectic.

Tonight was the opening night for the art show... sales went very well! (Especially for Anthony Steffes! He sold 6 paintings to one woman, and a bunch more to various other people. His art is quite low priced, and mom suspects his pieces will increase in value. Anyone looking for a good investment?) I'm processing credit cards, and was kept quite busy the whole night. I sold four cards. :) Not that impressive compared to Anthony, but it's nice getting the compliments.

What else... Dad gave me my Christmas present already... a Canon PowerShot SD1100! (I've agreed to do his wedding photos. There was a sale on the camera we decided on, and dad didn't see any reason for me to wait to start using it.)

The desk is stalled... I got the nasty chemical stuff done before the snow hit, and then I took a bit of a break (exhaustion, combined with time needed to prepare for the art show). I need to get back to it so that mom has space in her garage for the old couch she'll be freecycling.

The Help Centre was a *zoo* on Wednesday.

I finished another painting last Monday, but it's another one in my secret series, so you won't be seeing a photo any time soon. (I can't wait to be done so I can blog them!!! Given how long it has taken me so far, it'll probably be another year...)

Well, I think I'll go spin and watch the news (and take something for the headache I've had all day), and then go to bed early. I need to be at the art show before 10 am tomorrow for a full day of processing credit cards.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


The father of my neighbour's kids is back in her apartment!?! The one that was teaching the kids bad language, drinking, hit my neighbour, was forcibly removed by two police officers and his mother, and has been in and out of jail! WTF is up? They just got in from an Al Anon meeting, and he seems quite friendly right now... but will it really last? (Will she learn?)


Dear Santa... did you not read my previous blog post about neighbours?

Math Lesson

Annoying: pyramid scheme e-mails.

Really annoying: pyramid scheme e-mails with incorrect math.

Exhibit A:
You've been invited to be a part of a recipe exchange. Please send a recipe to the person whose name is listed in the number 1 position above (even if you don't know them). It should preferably be something quick, easy and without rare ingredients. Actually, the best one is one you know in your head and can type out and send right now. Then, copy this letter into a new e-mail, move my name to the #1 position and put your name in the #2 position. Only my name and your name should show when you send your e-mail. Send to 20 friends. If you cannot do this within 5 days (or choose not to!), let me know so it will be fair to those participating. You should receive 36 recipes. It's fun to see where they come from. Seldom does anyone drop out because we can all use new recipes. The turnaround is fast because there are only 2 names on the list. Thanks!
If each of 20 people e-mail 20 people, that's 400 people being e-mailed at the second step. If everyone responded, you would get 400 recipes back. If you want 36 recipes, everyone should be sending the pyramid scheme on to 6 people!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembrance Day

Lest we forget the horrors of war, and those that have sacrificed that we may be free.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Found on Flickr

Bird embroidery

So cute! (I think I must be addicted to Flossbox's embroidery, given how many I'm posting.) She has a free pattern for this one! :)

Found on Flickr

Sheep embroidery

Awwwwww! What a plump, adorable little sheep!

Found on Flickr


Another one I meant to blog about before halloween... ;)

This one is neat the way it looks like a geometric pattern at first, and then the bats pop out at you!

Found on Flickr

snowflake freebie finish

Pretty! I like the effect achieved by using the variegated floss.

Found on Flickr

Silver/White Christmas Stars!

Lovely! I really need to make myself a set of crocheted snowflakes (and stars!), and starch the few that I actually did get around to making. But those are pretty low on my priority list... and I have a *long* list.

Found on Flickr

The colors dust, coal and cobweb

Hee! Adorably spooky. :)

(I meant to post this one before halloween... I'm catching up on some older "Found on Flickr" posts that I hadn't gotten to before. Hence the big deluge...)

Found on Flickr



Found on Flickr


A gorgeous rainbow of buttons!

Found on Flickr

christmas ornaments inspired by maileg

Cute ornaments! My favourites are the geese and the mushrooms. :)

Found on Flickr

return of the ginger-bots

Hee! A cute twist on gingerbread men. :)

Found on Flickr

Spindle 11

Fascinating spindle! I wonder what it looks like when it's spinning?

Found on Flickr

Quilt upholstered chair F

Fascinating idea! This particular colour/style doesn't appeal to me, but it's given me the urge to make a slipcover for my couch based on some of the cool modern quilts I've seen. ;) (Not that I'll ever find the time...)

Found on Flickr


So adorable! I love the little wire feet.

Found on Flickr

ready to go

Adorable! Gift tags, with mushrooms that are actually pins... great idea! The handmade paper behind the mushrooms looks like grass, and really jazzes up the tags. I love the button spots too. :) Yet another thing I'd like to make myself...

Found on Flickr

hedgie 1

Adorable! What a great idea, using bits of yarn to make the spines.

Found on Flickr

Root vegetables

Cute! I love the little thread roots too... just like in real ones. :) It's amazing how stylized, yet simultaneously realistic these are.

Found on Flickr

Oneness, felted bowls

Neat! What a great way to make a pair of matching bowls. I'm amazed at the evenness of the felt, and how straight the cut is too.

Found on Flickr

Bosworth Mini in Thuja Burl & Cochin Rosewood 26g

Gorgeous! I'm a sucker for burl wood. ;) That tussah silk is yummy too!

Found on Flickr


How sweet! Another adorable tree decoration...

Found on Flickr

Sea Treasure Collection-Shell and Pearl Rose Earrings

How pretty! I think these would look lovely on a friend of mine... I wonder if she wears dangly earrings? (Or what size they are... they might be rather large. It's hard to tell.)

Oh... and Santa? While I'm asking for things? This sea urchin Christmas tree ornament by the same seller (but different shop) is lovely. (But not within my budget... dang budget.)

In case you're wondering about the little sea creatures that used to inhabit said shells, they died of natural causes, and the shells are collected on a lonely stretch of beach near where the artist lives. (So much better than things being killed *just* for decoration... like those dried seahorses you sometimes see. So sad.)

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Early... Or Late?

Remember how I told you about my strange downstairs neighbour who was out in his car, drinking on a Sunday morning? It may not have been "morning" for him...

He's out there again. I think he was talking on his cell when I first saw him, and then he was thumping his music and revving his car. The bass was powerful enough that parts of the building were rattling. I was going to blog it, but then I figured it wasn't that exciting.

Not, that is, until my other neighbour came over, complaining that he'd been out there for hours already, and last week he had been at it *all* night. Her kitchen, living room, and bedroom windows were rattling, and her kids couldn't sleep. We called the landlord and asked him to ask the downstairs weirdo to perhaps take a drive somewhere farther away.

That guy is weird. (However, I'm still glad he's not blasting his stereo in the apartment below me.)


The landlord called the guy, and we don't think he took it well... the music was quieter while he was on the phone, but then there was (apparently, I wasn't at the window) a fast drive around the block (shudder... he'd been drinking!), continuing of the thumping music, and much revving of the engine. (Does the guy not care about the cost of gas?) When I noticed the return of the music and revving, I loaned my phone to my neighbour with the kids who couldn't sleep, and said she could return it in the morning. (She doesn't have phone service yet... she's working on it, but she's poor.)

Apparently she called the police. (I was asleep at this time, so this next part is what she told me.) They took a *long* time to get there (this was rather low on their list of priorities). When they did, the guy noticed them coming, threw something out of the passenger side window (drugs? I had wondered at something else I saw him do the last time, but couldn't tell from my apartment), then casually walked towards the building, as if it hadn't been him causing the disturbance. (Huh... is he perhaps practiced at this?) The cops pulled off, then hid around a corner. The downstairs guy came out and started looking for whatever he had tossed out of the car. The cops came back. Rudeness (on the part of the downstairs neighbour) ensued, and I think she said he went back inside the building.

At any rate, when I woke up at 4 am, I could clearly hear what music he was playing inside his apartment. It wasn't too loud, though, so I was able to sleep.

Dear Santa: could you please replace all of my crazy neighbours with sane, quiet, friendly ones?

sKNITches Syncopation Crochet Socks

sKNITches Syncopation Crochet Socks

Happy (warm) socks!

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland

What a difference a day or two makes...

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Weather Outside is Frightful...

Winter has definitely arrived. There's white on the ground. (It arrived today as a combination of rain and sleet.) I'm glad the toxic part of the stripping is done!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A Nice Compliment

One of my former students sat with me on the bus last night. When he mentioned that one of his other courses was his favourite, I jokingly teased that I was surprised that mine wasn't his favourite. He said that mine was a thinker (the course definitely is), and that I taught the material. He said that he would have failed had he taken it with anyone else, and that he was recommending that his friends try to take it from me. (I don't currently know if/when I'll be teaching it again.) What a nice compliment! (I feel that the other profs probably do a better job of it, but it's nice to hear that someone liked the job I had done.)


Woo hoo! All the refinishing steps requiring toxic chemicals are done! (Now some more sanding, transportation, finishing, transportation, assembly...)

Well, I'll be... I didn't think my neighbours to the south would manage it, but perhaps there's hope for you guys after all!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Slow Learner

When trying to strip a desk before winter arrives, it's best to have plenty of supplies on hand.

Recently I've been in/near stores that sell paint stripper a number of times, and thought "should I pick up an extra can of stripper?" Each time, I answered "nah, I'll wait and see if I run out." I did, in the middle of Sunday afternoon. Luckily I was able to borrow the car.

When I got to Home Depot, they had the stripper in both 500 mL and 1 L sizes. I thought to myself "should I get 500 mL, or 1 L?" Although I made an okay decision, and bought the 1 L size, a better answer would have been "yes"... as in, get both. (Or even safer, buy two of the 1 L sizes, since the 1 L size is only $2 more than the 500 mL size.) Tonight I ran out of stripper at the crack of midnight. I only have half of one side left to strip (and then both upright pieces to wash/neutralize with mineral spirits and sand lightly before I can move indoors where weather is no longer a concern).

Ironically, I was on the non-express bus today, and thought about whether I should stop off at McDiarmid Lumber to pick up some more stripper, and perhaps another set of gloves. (The current pair may not survive applying mineral spirits to both uprights.) Guess where I'll be going tomorrow? (If you guessed *not* to the art club, you're right.)

*pout*... I've been looking forward to going to the art club tomorrow night... in fact, I had sort of thought of going tonight too. However, the forecast is talking about snow by the end of the week, so time is *short*.

I think while I'm in McDiarmid, not only will I get the large can of stripper (I can't afford any more delays!), but I'll also get another pair of gloves, and perhaps even splurge on new filter cartridges for the respirator. (This desk keeps costing more and more...)

More photos and discoveries about the desk when it's not 1:20 am...

Sunday, November 02, 2008

As It Happens: The Scary Edition

I was listening to CBC's As It Happens podcast last night as I folded laundry. This guy (mp3 link) *scares* me. He's talking about why we should be scared of Obama, but his words just make me scared of Americans who think like him. He somehow manages to say "socialist" like it means "antichrist"... and *how*, after eight years of out-of-control spending by Bush, can he still think that *republicans* are the responsible spenders? Um... wasn't it *Clinton* who got the spending under control?!? Here's a graph... and note that this is *before* the massive Wall Street bail-out!

That scary dude was speaking from the "Spread Eagle Tavern"... all I can think of is that is his position, as he eagerly waits to be (bleep)ed by the next republican government.

Local Colour Art Group November Art Show

LCAG invite NOV 2008

If you're local, I'd love to see you at the art show! I'll have some of my art up, and I'll be processing credit cards Friday and Saturday if you'd like to say hi too. :) The club has lots of great artists, so please come even if the art of mine you've seen isn't up your alley...

Saturday, November 01, 2008


Today started late, and didn't exactly go as planned, but I did get stuff done.

I started off by sleeping until noon. Whoops! I think I'm fighting off getting a nasty bug that's going around. And after the crazy week I had last week, I *needed* the sleep.

My neighbour, J, came over and thanked me for looking after her place, paid me back for the cat food, etc, and gave me a gift as a thank-you. She also thinks that the guy, who I am now referring to as "the d!ckwad" (although not necessarily to her, mostly because I don't want her kids picking up the language), is annoying/messed up/rude/whatever. (She kept trying to get the phone from him when he was being rude to me...)

When I got my laundry downstairs, there was a line. :( I did still manage to get it all done by about 9:30, so that was good.

I carried my second batch of finished desk pieces upstairs:
Desk Pieces
(I have a bunch of "desk update" photos that I haven't uploaded, plus ones that show the construction more.)

Due to late laundry, I didn't get anything new done on the desk, though. I will tomorrow, though.

I washed a week's worth of dishes, and then promptly made more dirty dishes by baking a loaf of bread and eating dinner. (With all the craziness and busyness this week, dishes just didn't get washed.)

I had another run-in with the d!ckwad... he was coming down from J's place, sauntering along slowly and *smoking* in the hallway! When I angrily told him that wasn't allowed, he half-smiled and shrugged, in a "who's going to stop me" way. When I repeated myself, he stopped sauntering (instead of apologizing, putting the cigarette out, and/or hurrying to get the cigarette outside), and said "I didn't know." I was getting madder by the second, pointed out the sign on the door that was *right* at eye level... and ended up grabbing his arm and dragging him outside. He said that constituted assaulting him, and I just repeated that he wasn't allowed to smoke in the hall. He wouldn't let go of the door handle so that I could shut the door and keep the smoke out. Since prying his fingers off would have required me to be rough enough to cause him temporary pain, I instead grabbed his cigarette (which happened to break it) and throw it away from the doorway. That made him more pissed, and he went upstairs to whine to J to give him another cigarette. I looked at the other lady from the building who was there with me, and commented that smoking was allowed in the suites, but not the hallways, and she gave me a look like she wouldn't have gotten as worked up as me (she's a smoker), but agreed that he was breaking the rules. I went out and made sure the cigarette butt was out, and then went upstairs. D!ckwad was whining to J, who was stating that smoking was indeed not allowed in the halls, and he shouldn't have been smoking there. I looked at her, and said that he was also half-parked in my spot, and that I needed it tonight. She said he'd be leaving right away. D!ckwad then said I should apologize to him, and I told him I didn't in fact owe him an apology, since he was breaking the rules. When I said I'd call the landlord, he snarkily said "oh, I'm so *scared* of the landlord"... so I said I'd call the cops instead. (I think I said this part when he was downstairs.) At any rate, he clearly wasn't going to admit *any* wrongdoing, and it looked like he'd cause J less trouble if I left the scene. I'll talk to J tomorrow about what happened.

I used my new scraper tool to scrape the mystery spots off my kitchen windows. (I tried washing them the other weekend, only to discover stubborn specks of something left by a previous tenant on the inside, and really persistent dirt on the outside. Also, the inside panes don't seem to be removable, so I can't wash the "outsides" of the inside panes.)

I assembled the frames for two pieces that will be in the art show in two weekends:
Art Framed
Now, except for cards, I think I'm pretty much ready for the art show. (I need to get my cards e-mailed to my mom so she can print them for me, and then I need to assemble them. I can e-mail her some files that I prepared for the last show, but I want to make cards out of some of my newer pieces too, and I don't have those done.)

Finally, K came over tonight, providing me with a nice ear to gripe to, followed by soothing spinning:
The fleece is all nuppy, so I'm spinning a "novelty" yarn. :) The colours are *sooooo* pretty! Different shades of purple. :)

And I read the electric meter. And answered some questions on the forums for my job. The parts of today that I've been awake for have definitely been busy. I should go to bed now, so that I can get up early enough to accomplish even more tomorrow... I want to get as much done on the desk as possible (winter is coming), go grocery shopping, and have dinner with my family.

Well, I should fold and put away the clean laundry that is spread all over my (thankfully already made) bed, and *then* go to sleep. ;)