Sunday, July 1, 2012

Returns and Regrets

If you have come here looking for your daily glimpse of my 56th year, you are too late. Having crossed into my 57th year, I have retired this photo-a-day effort. You can find me here, with gratitude to my cousin-in-law Debi for the title.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Shirt to Dye For

The t-shirt I dyed in this morning's natural dye workshop. Fortunately, I took two shirts. An out-of-town family came. Since they registered at the last minute, they did not know to bring a shirt or other item to dye. I gave them the smaller of my two shirts for their daughter. Since the power was out from last night's storm, we dyed without hot dye pots, meaning that the dye might or might not still be there once I finish the process here.

Friday, June 29, 2012

I'm taking a natural dyes workshop tomorrow morning. By this time tomorrow, one of these shirts will have been dyed using plant materials. I tell you, if we survive the zombie apocalypse, we'll at least be able to dye whatever clothes we can save.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Change Happens

Unlike a lot of people, I use cash instead of plastic for most of my shopping, which gives me change that goes into a jar and, later, the bank. On Tuesday, the change from CVS included a shiny new penny from the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Today, my change from Kroger included not the three quarters it should have, but two quarters and one Australian dime. The husband suggested that perhaps the travel gods are suggesting we go to Trinidad and Tobago since we've been to Australia. I think I'd rather go back to Oz than hit the Caribbean right now.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Birthday Greetings

I got a birthday card from my older brother today. It made me almost deliriously happy when he said I was one of the most youthful 56-year-olds he knows. Thanks, Jon!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Protest Missed

The university's president was reinstated today. I might have been at the vigil accompanying the board meeting, but was instead at the vet with the family dog. She did something to her paw and finished the last third of our walk on three legs. By the time I got her to the vet, everything seemed fine, darn it! But at least I did my duty as the nurturer of the family and got it checked.

Monday, June 25, 2012

A World in a Marble

My friend the art teacher brought an early birthday present to me over the weekend, the marble I'm holding in my hand here. Her son the glassblower made it. It's like an incredibly beautiful world in a marble, and I love it.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Keep Calm and Rally On

There was a "rally for honor" today in support of reinstating the university's deposed president. The governing board will meet on Tuesday and has been told by the governor to make a final decision or resign the next day. Yes, there's another rally planned billed as a "vigil" rather than a "rally." I was a bit young for most of the Vietnam-era protests, so this will have to do at least for now.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Green But Not with Envy

The green here is almost overwhelming. Driving down the road to our subdivision is like navigating a green tunnel. Shades of grey? Try shades of green instead.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Looking Up, Looking Out

I killed time in the husband's office today, partly by reading, partly by unsuccessfully trying to get Betsy (the Toshiba tablet) configured to work with the university's wireless network, and partly by pondering the window grid and the trees beyond it.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

All Too Familiar

Some people brought their kids to the protest on Monday, and this one reminded me of all the times I spent reading at adult events as well as all the time my own kids spent doing just that. I have a hard time understanding why some people do not read for pleasure. How narrow their worlds must be!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


I was taken out to a birthday breakfast today by a friend who will be away on the date proper. I will start checking an older age block on surveys, though the income box will stay the same. I will review the resolutions I made six months ago for the new (calendar) year. I may eat cake or perhaps ice cream. Life goes on.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A Sign of the Times

This was my favorite sign from yesterday's protest. Its significance is that Classics, along with German, is rumored to be one of the programs that elements of the Board of Visitors want to see closed. I just read of the resignation, effective immediately, of one of the super-profs in the engineering school. We are living in interesting times here and now.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Just What Decade Is This?

I'm hoping to suppress my very real fear of crowds long enough to go to a protest on the Lawn this afternoon. A subset of the university's governing board fired (well, demanded the resignation of) the relatively new president in a process cloaked in secrecy. The board is meeting to name an interim president this afternoon, the announcement of which will be greeted by, the organizers hope, thousands of faculty, staff, students, and just plain people standing in protest of the original decision and/or the process by which it was made. It promises to be an interesting day if not week around here.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Monkeying Around

This little guy hangs on one of my flowerpots. He was an easy thing to photograph in the midst of making dinner for Father's Day.

Saturday, June 16, 2012


There's a reason this plant was labelled "butterfly bush." If I were totally anal, I'd do a bit of research and find out the real name. But I'm not, so I won't. Instead, I'll just enjoy the view while I can.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Sunshine on My Shoulders Makes Me Happy

The morning newspapers were, again, late, but the sun coming through the trees at the top of the driveway made the walk up there worth it. And if the papers had been there, I might not have stopped long enough to notice this.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Too Much of a Good Thing

These are the shoes I got in response to learning that the shoes I'd been wearing coupled with my prescription shoe inserts--all designed to help with the plantar fasciitis I had last summer--were over-correcting and possibly contributing to some knee pain I've been having.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I Didn't, Actually

These are the stickers I brought home to shoot for yesterday's entry, only I ended up being lazy or tired and used a random recent photo. The primary yesterday was a Republican one, and I could have voted in it despite my Democrat leanings since we don't register by party here in Virginia. I couldn't see voting for the person I knew would win, and it just didn't seem right to vote for one of the other candidates because I figured they'd be easier to beat in November.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

It Was a Long Day

The Republicans held a primary today to select their candidate for the U.S. Senate in this fall's election. In the 13 hours that the polls were open, 105 people voted. I did six or seven Sunday crossword puzzles, finished the book I had started, read another whole book, and shot the breeze with my coworkers a bit. What does this all have to do with the photo above? Nothing! I just didn't feel like taking a photo. I'm going to bed instead.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Counting Down

Doesn't everyone have a tube for launching liquid nitrogen rockets? Everyone should. The house record for this puppy is putting a softball some 200 feet in the air, with the altitude calculated using the hang time of the ball. We are oh so nerd-friendly around here.

Sunday, June 10, 2012


Yes, this book is for real and about how to craft things using cat fur. I should have been saving it all these years because the current cats are relatively dull when it comes to fur color. The white cat, the white and orange ones, and the all-black ones have crossed the Rainbox Bridge, leaving me with two tabbies. Oh well, they do their best to shed, so I might as well make use of their output.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Over the Bounding Main

We went sailing on the Chesapeake Bay today. It was a good day.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Into the Trap

Meet Gizmo, store corgi at Blue Whale Books, one of many used-book stores here. It never fails. We go in to pet Gizmo, and we buy books. You'd almost think they'd planned it that way when, in fact, we need no excuse to enter such a store and make a purchase. Petting the corgi is just a fringe benefit.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Life in Circles

There's an inner and an outer circle visible in the rings of this tree. Was there some weather event that caused this? Some tree disease? Or did the teenage or young adult tree just mature into an adult one? I'm thinking it was the tree's midlife crisis.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

What Goes Around

What goes around may come around. I think I had a butterfly on flower shot very early on in the year of this blog. It seems only appropriate to have another as the end draws near. Have I decided what to do next year? Somewhat. The blog-to-be at least has a name thanks to a comment from Debi on my post pondering the coming, 57th year of my life.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

In the Summertime

I know it's really still spring, but there's something about a colorful batik sundress that just screams "Summer!"

Monday, June 4, 2012

A Little Bit of Luck

I found this on a solo walk with the dog. No eagle-eyed kid there to tell me there was a four-leafed clover in one or the other clover patch. No, I found this one all by my lonesome. Does that mean I get all the luck?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

And the Ceiling?

How low can one go if there is no floor? And if there is no floor, might there be no glass ceiling? Yes, I am being frivolous, having consciously wasted a couple of hours watching the last several episodes of this year's NCIS on my new tablet, which I think may be named Betsy after my first best friend ever, from kindergarten at Roosevelt Elementary School in Great Falls, Montana. It's been a good day.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Who Drools?

This was on the Free Speech Monument downtown today. Since I was with my friend Sarah, it seemed only natural to photograph it. It is good to spend a day with a friend one does not see often, good indeed.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Into the Home Stretch

I have only the 30 days of June left for this photo-a-day effort. Not every photo was taken on the day for which it was posted. Not every post was uploaded on the day for which it was tagged. Still, this blog has been successful in helping me focus on each and every day. Will I continue it in my 57th year of life? I'm thinking I will though in a different format. Current thought is a daily haiku since it is often taking the photo that has been the hard part lately. Comments? Keep the photo and add a haiku in place of this text? Some other form of rambling. Help me out here.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Wayward Hand

If I hadn't been with other people when I found this, I would have kept it for my collection of shiny things with which to play. Instead, I left it in hopes its owner would find it. The pattern of colors, though not the colors themselves, remind me of the native art seen along the western coast of Canada and up into Alaska. Now, I sort of wish I'd kept it.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

What Went in the Mail

I recently sent some mutated Beanie Babies to Australia. Now that they've arrived, I'll post a photo of one, a kangaroo with the head of a rabbit and a platypus in its pouch. Playing god or just having some creative fun?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Things in the Mail

I've gotten various quilting magazines over the years. I get them for a while, and then I stop. This is one I don't plan to stop getting.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Remembering Those Who Serve(d)

A red, white, and blue buffalo seemed appropriate for this Memorial Day. Plus, I took this photo last fall in Montana, while there to scatter my dad's ashes. Memorial Day was one of his favorite holidays for two reasons. First, it was a day to remember his older (and only) brother who died in the Korean War. Second, the Indianapolis 500 is always run on the day before Memorial Day. Dad loved the Indy, and one year drove out to watch the time trials. Dad wasn't a veteran, but this seems as good a day as any to remember him a bit more closely.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Aftermath

Bread is rising, and the cookies on top of brownies are baking. The house smells pretty darn good. Now to wash those dishes!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

How Do They Do That?

I find it amazing how a cat can perch so demurely and so precisely on almost any surface, as exemplified by Scully's using the new tablet as her throne. Would that I could sit so comfortably and primly.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Seeing Double

Yeah, it's the same tablet as shown a couple of days ago. Today I listened to several radio stations and didn't listen to others that just didn't seem to want to play. I also downloaded a book for reading when I'm donating platelets on Monday. A couple of apps I tried to download didn't come through due to some flakiness with whatever Google Play thing I was using. That's okay. If I need them, I'll figure out a way to get them. If not, no worries. (No, I have not been drinking or otherwise altering my consciousness.)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Shades of Green

It's raining a lot lately, and this afternoon's shower left the outside squeakingly and cleanly green. I think blue is supposed to be a calming color, but I find these greens calming as well. Calm is a good thing. Green is a good color.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Scaling the Learning Curve

For Mother's Day I got to select a tablet, and the winner was a Toshiba Thrive. It's nice, but learning a new operative system does come with a new set of frustrations. I supposedly downloaded a free CNN app last night, but I'll be damned if I can find it to use it. When I try to download it again, I'm told I already have it. Cue the music? "We Shall Overcome," anyone?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

About Monday's Post

So I posted something for Monday yesterday and forgot about yesterday. Yeah, there have been some issues lately that I discussed with the doc at my annual maintenance check yesterday. While I wait for the results of the bloodwork, I'm supposed to cut my caffeine intake. Don't ask how high it's been, but it could be contributing to several things the doc and I aren't happy about. This can't happen overnight without severe pain, so the above is my first and what I hope will be my penultimate cup of coffee for the day. Yeah, this might not end well.

Monday, May 21, 2012

My Life Has No Honor Code

So this is an old photo and a day-late post. Life is like that lately in that I feel more than ever that I am impersonating a competent adult and only rarely successfully, a fact I discussed in general terms with my doc today at my annual maintenance check-up. Now I return to trying to determine, before I put on a screen protecting sheet, if there is a static cling thing on the screen of the tablet that just arrived. A fully competent adult would look at it and quickly say, no, there is not one; the directions lied, and put on the screen protector. I look at it and ask why I am so stupid as to not be able to see an edge here or a corner there because they would not have lied and said to remove something that wasn't there. Keep in mind here that the directions that say there is a static cling thing are those for the screen protector; nowhere is a static cling thing mentioned in the table literature. Yes, I'm sucking at life today.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

She Only Looks Angelic

This is the devil cat that disrupted my sleep big-time last night. When she wasn't trying to sleep on my face, she was trying to puch me out of the bed. Needless to say, I will not be nice and let her stay in the bedroom tonight. She can sleep alone, and I can, well, sleep.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

We went shooting this morning, the calm before the storm of entertaining tomorrow night. Now, well into the night before, with a long list of things I can't do, prepare, make tonight, I'm coming to terms with missing my normal three hours or more of martial arts on Sunday morning. Oh well, I guess. There are worse reasons for having to miss it than playing grown-up.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Just Another Work-in-Progress

Being lazy, I chose this photo somewhat randomly. It's something I started in a class in February. I only hope that when I finally get back to working on it I remember the technique. Such is life in the median strip.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

It's the Little Things

The somewhat overexposed table seems a metaphor for the clutter in my life. I can't see the big things for the little things cluttering the view. Things that should be done, want to be done, need to be done, are totally unnecessary. It's hard to tell the difference sometimes.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Worth Repeating?

I have a sneaky feeling I may have used an image like this before, but I'm tired yet hanging in there, so if I have, so what. It's my blog, and I'll repeat if I want to. Besides, how does one go wrong with an extra dose of Horny Goat Weed? Oh, wait, what if one is not a goat? Or a weed? Yeah, I see where this is going. It has made me smile, and that is all that matters right now.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

With a Little Luck

I can never find four-leaf clovers, though my kids can with just a glance. I should feel luckier after winning a raffle yesterday, but I don't. I guess I need to find my own four-leaf clover, unlike this one which was given to me.

Monday, May 14, 2012

We Have a Winner

At the play I attended Saturday night (The Wedding Singer, at the high school from which the sons graduated), I bought one raffle ticket for each dollar bill I had in my wallet. Had I had one more dollar bill, I would have won a can of peanuts. As it was, the ticket above has won earrings from a local art studio, not peanuts by any means.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Many Things Are Better with a Possum Gun

Recipe for a rocking Mother's Day: Take one already dead possum. Make it a cape marked "SP" for Super Possum. Attach a Happy Mother's Day banner to its tail. Shoot it from a possum gun (which some people call a potato gun). Shoot it again ... and again ... and again. When done, dispose of it in Viking fashion using a flamethrower.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

In the Wee Hours

Bread rising at 6:00 a.m.? Younger son is on his way home for a visit, and this is his favorite bread. I'm hoping it will just be coming out of the oven or still be warm when he gets here. Yeah, he took the redeye. The things a mother does for her offspring!