Monday, October 27, 2008

My weekend

We got that freeze and it's still pretty cold out so I am making the doglet wait a while before we walk this morning. They didn't turn the heat on--which I think is reprehensible of them; everyone doesn't have space heaters and even with one running all night, it was too cold in here for Gryph to take a shower before work--but like I said, by the letter of the law, they don't have to until November 1st. My poor friend upstairs has a cold and her apartment is running 5 to 10 degrees colder than mine. She refused my space heater yesterday but I might be able to talk her into using it for a while today.... especially if I simply drag it upstairs without asking.

I have gathered some maple leaves--yellows and oranges with occasional streaks or patches of scarlet, nowhere near the fire of last Autumn but beautiful none the less--and used Gryph's's trick of a tiny amount of hand lotion on them to keep them from shattering when they dry. I will keep on gathering; some are for my wreath but I would like to use the rest as enclosures in cards for my mom and sisters. Right now they are all sitting under weights to keep them flat as they dry.

I patched Gryph's work shoes, glued in a little leather where the heel was worn on the inside, and so far it seems to be holding up. So we spent the shoe money at the grocery store and I moved "new shoes" to next payday. It took $150--TWICE my normal budget--to buy most of two weeks' food and dammit, I didn't even buy meat except for dollar a pound hot dogs, and I kept the cheese to a minimum, only three pounds for two weeks. Normally we would go through at least six pounds. But I did buy five pounds of rice and twenty pounds of veggies. I wish I could have bought everything, including paper towels and toiletries, but there just was no way. I sacrificed them to get another canister of coffee; it went on sale for $6 and I have a troubled feeling that might be as low as it goes for the rest of the year.

Funny how inflation-caused relative poverty forces us to eat like the revised food pyramid suggests *wry smile* but really, all that has changed from our preferred diet is that we don't eat much meat anymore and it isn't the kinds of meat we prefer. I did splurge and buy two cans of tuna, not so much for us as for the cats. They're making it plain they truly miss tuna water, so twice in the next two weeks, they'll get a little of it. *sigh* I used to be able to give them two cans' worth, two or three times a week. Dang.

Oh well, I got sick of tuna back then, lol... but I miss chicken and red meat. I bought a pound of that liver I've been needing, but it's gone up a dollar a pound in the last month... it used to be almost free; twenty years ago I used to buy it for 19 cents a pound, ten years ago for 49 cents a pound... now it's $2.49 and looks to keep rising.

Today I cook my first pie punkin, to see how they do. I seem to remember that they are nowhere near as watery as jack o' lantern punkins, and that they taste much better. I'm hoping this is so, because dang, they cost just as much for half the size! I also got two Delicata squash and another butternut to go with the second pie punkin, so we should be set for squash for the next couple weeks. It's a relief to be able to afford *something* in the way of fresh produce, even if it is only squashes.

Gryph is in love with my homemade noodles. I never knew they could be so easy--one egg, half an eggshell of milk, 1/8th teaspoon salt beaten together until foamy; one cup flour beaten in a little at a time, one more half cup flour (or so... depends on the size of the egg) kneaded in to make a dry dough. Let rest ten minutes to half an hour, roll out, snip into noodles with scissors (or cut with a sharp knife... but not on your good countertop!). Boil at least ten minutes; these stay al dente. They don't break down and get mushy like commercial pasta does, so they're great in soup. I make them thin sometimes, and double-thick others. The double thick are like a cross between a noodle and a dumpling.

It is really cold in here; I had to turn the space heater back on. Dang, my electric bill is gonna be as high as it was during the summer! But we have to have heat. Now if the heater will do its job before the extension cord gets too hot and sets the place on fire, we'll be in like Flynn.

I am seriously considering that try though I might to make this apartment be okay for us, it is lacking many advantages that a house would give us. My goal is to not only have a garden space where NOBODY feels it is okay to steal my veggies from me (grrrr! I harvested what was left and gave them to my friend upstairs, who is hurting even more than we are for money), but also a living space--------

----------omg!!! I locked myself out--forgot my keys were in my jeans pocket, wore my sweats when I walked the dog because it is so cold; thanks be the manager was here!! With the plumber, and he's working on the boilers today, thanks be--okay, Lady's walked and drama's ended, sheesh... *brrrrrr it is cold*

----------also a living space where I control the heat and cooling, where things are energy efficient and we have multiple fuel sources. I don't mind living with others; I might even prefer it, at least for a while, but I really mind inefficient appliances, substandard electrical systems, and lack of living and garden space. I mind this way more than I expected to, since I had made peace with staying here.

Maybe when the heat goes on, I will stop minding so much. *rueful smile* But heat cannot make up for my lack of garden space, my lack of security that what I grow will be there when I go to get it; cannot make up for lack of privacy; cannot make up for lack of closets, lack of floor space. Heat cannot make up for electrical outlets that are burned dark brown, that overheat cords, that are simply inadequate--and yes, we do have to be careful what we run because our breakers do flip if we use electricity in the living room and dining room at the same time, or in the bedroom and computer area both at once. *sigh* Heat cannot make up for inefficient appliances that cost me too much every month, a freezer that makes my food smell like soap, a broken window, a broken toilet.... a "maintenance man" who breaks everything worse when he tries to fix it....

*reminds self of new mantra: May we prosper in all things, especially financially.*

I guess that since we are prospering in all ways, we need to prosper our way into a sturdy well-maintained house with a good fence and everything we need! Wish I knew how to win the lottery. *wry smile* Still, we are prospering in all ways, especially financially--and the more I say it in the present tense, the more true it becomes. What I ask for comes to me, so now I am going to ask to for living space that better meets our needs. "This, or better."

Lady seems to be doing better this morning. Gryph gave her baby aspirin at supper and she didn't seem quite as hot during the night last night. Her nose still runs a little but she isn't coughing so much anymore. Poor baby; I just didn't realize that she might catch a cold!

I forgot to buy the Bounce (it's supposed to be a good mouse repeller) and it seems the mouse/mice are expanding their base; yesterday I came home to find Artemis crouched intently under the desk in the dining room, her butt in the air and her head craned round the things I have stored under it. OY. My friend upstairs is upset thinking people will start using D-Con; she had a dog who ate a D-Conned mouse once, and the vet BARELY saved the dog's life; cats have no chance. I've got to get that Bounce!

My garden, amazingly, survived the frost intact. I guess I'd better water it today! I'll use room temp water so the dirt and roots will absorb it more easily. Tonight is supposed to be a hard frost, but if the heat goes on, the garden may be sheltered enough to stay frost-free since it is under my leaky single-pane windows. Who knew? Microclimates are awesome things.

I saw the news last night about the bombing in Syria. I was SO ANGRY. It seems to me that this is a blatant attempt to start a war with Syria so that a specific candidate can win the election. It's unbearable, absolutely unbearable, that CHILDREN should die to further the election fortunes of any party!!! This is beyond despicable; it is evil, pure and simple, and cannot be whitewashed over with ANY excuse.

So I did something. I did a Binding. I had considered binding the one who authorized the bombing, but that would leave others equally evil and insane to bring war... so I did the only thing I could think of--I did the binding on War, itself. I made a red spirit doll and used black thread to bind its hands and render it impotent, ineffective, stopped in its tracks, helpless forever.

There has not been a time in my lifetime where some government or other has not been waging war on its own citizens or another country's. There has not been a time in my lifetime when children have not been dying for other people's political ideologies. There has not been a time in my lifetime when Peace has had any chance at all.

Clearly, this problem must be addressed at the root. Bind war, itself, my dears. There is no room for peace in the world until we deal with this obstinate problem. Truss War up and render it obsolete. Remove it from our lives. The more of us who join together in this image and prayer, the faster it will come to fruition. Bind War and render it obsolete.

Hold fast, bind back
The bitter hands of War
Cry out, shriek out
Enough, ENOUGH!
No more, no more, NO MORE!!

Red spirit doll bound with black thread

embroidered tears on face

arms and hands tightly bound

needle left in

Sunday, October 26, 2008

First frost!

Whoooo! First frost tonight or tomorrow, Arctic air coming through... *shivers* The pipes were banging this morning; hope they get the system up and working soon! LOL, had to run and get everything pulled off the radiators; over the summer they became storage platforms... *sheepish look*

Someone stole my biggest bell pepper Friday evening or Saturday morning. I still haven't decided how to handle that but I believe I will just pull all the veggies myself this afternoon, cut the basil and tarragon for drying, bring the mint in, water the pansies and call it good. It's time to put the garden to bed.

*rubs hands together* That wind is sooo cold, even inside... think I'd best wash some dishes and let the water warm my hands back up! Brrrrrrr!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The COOLEST blog!!! Check this out!

This is a tutorial on making your own art journal. I've read this beginning post, and I'm not reading another until I get my own journal--who knows, maybe I will make one out of watercolor paper; I have the paper and now I also have an excuse!

Have y'all seen the Ning communities? I found the link to Sarah's blog here on Artful Journaling, which is part of this community Fiber Arts/Mixed Media.

OH MY WORD... I had to come back and edit this to add another one. Check this one out, too! This is River Garden Studio, and it was a little slow to load, even on highspeed, but oh my, so VERY worth the wait! Roxanne is an art teacher and VERY amazing artist; her blog is filled with inspiring images!

Monday, October 20, 2008

full-size pic: Autumn Wreath

I hope this doesn't take too long to load; I couldn't get far away enough with the camera to take a smaller pic! My fingers are crossed that by setting the size in the post, I made it quicker for anyone on dial-up.

This is made from a branch I saved last winter for a dreamcatcher which somehow never really wanted to be made... when I wanted a door-wreath, though, there it was!

The broom at the top is made from pine needles, bound with the shed leaf-stalks of a Dracaena marginata (Madagascar palm). I made it in Phoenix the Autumn before I moved here. The stalk of grass was gathered in September while walking the doglet. The branch and leaves were gathered last week specifically for the wreath, and a sweetgrass braid was taken apart and rebraided to be longer and skinny specifically for the wreath.

I didn't intend for the sycamore leaves to curl up that way. They were flat as boards when I worked them into the wreath. Maybe some oak or maple is in this wreath's future! Sheesh.

The doily was not specific to the wreath until I recognized two things: I was making too many mistakes to give it away, and all that brown-ness needed some white! LOL, I've always been like that... I used to tell my sibs they could only have the broken cookies or overdone ones when I was baking, since the good ones went on the holiday gift trays. *made sure there were plenty of broken ones, though* Anyhow, I will do this doily again (I've already started it in that rainbow thread I used for the ric rac, just to see how it works) but probably in a larger thread. Size eighty thread gives a small doily, as you see here--tis only six inches edge-to-edge--and I would like it to be a little larger if I am going to give it as a gift.

The pattern was unnamed, from the October 2004 issue of Magic Crochet magazine. It was an issue of doilies and mats, slanted toward the Winter holidays, and I am so glad I have it! I was tired of four- and six- and eight-based patterns; a five-based pattern is so nice, and I am always on the lookout for five-pointed stars.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day October

Better late than never! I took these pics yesterday, but didn't get to blog until now. Still, I was thinking of y'all, and I did remember the camera!

You might notice how empty my lil flowerpot garden looks without the squash and pumpkin vines. Over the two months that I was sick, the squash bugs just decimated the vines... evidently they are only drawn by the female flowers, so just as bloom reached its peak, the bugs descended. Aaaaack! Well, I know better for next year. I'll just have to concentrate on different crops.

Long after I thought the plants had given up, there's one last green bean. And then, amazingly enough, there are....

Bell peppers! I have five now (one fell off), but imagine my surprise when the plant basically languished all summer long, then caught a virus--looks like peach leaf curl, actually, lol--and THEN started setting peppers! It's cold now, so I doubt they'll ripen and they might not even get to full-size, but what the heck! They're peppers!

Here is my bloom for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day.

Yep! Indeed, that IS an eggplant blossom. What is WITH these plants? The sun has disappeared, lol! But I have three baby eggplants and, as of today, two blooms.

Combined with the peppers, this is more produce than I got all summer long. Who knew?!

Now is that a beautiful sight? The mint nearly died off completely; only one sad sprig was left. The weather cooled, it rained a couple times, and the mint started growing.... and then it leaned over and grew some more! I moved the pots one day and they snapped apart.

Huh? They weren't attached... then I realized the MINT had snapped apart, after it had colonized the adjacent pot. Now THAT'S the mint I know and love, lol!

Look at that basil!! It came back too, just like the mint, but without the colonizing tendencies. it hasn;6t had a chance to colonize anything--I've harvested it twice in the past couple weeks, and it's coming back yet again.

My wonderful brave portulaca though... well, let us kindly say it is reduced to sadness and comment no more.

*elaborate sigh upon its behalf*

The oregano and tarragon have been harvested again and again and they're still going strong, but the cosmos is another one of those which leave me scratching my head. Tis the only one that survived (I planted a dozen seeds), and it hasn't bloomed yet. Too bad the foliage isn't edible! If it were blooming, it would be wonderful; this is Cosmos sulphurea "Bright Lights" and it's easily one of my most favorite summer flowers.

The pansies are trying valiantly....

This is the original butternut squash pot and I guess that squash was REALLY greedy! Judging by the state of the pansies only a couple weeks after transplanting, there is next to no nitrogen left in that pot! I'll have to fertilize it once more, full strength this time (I had been going half-strength, not expecting more flowers on the veggies).

Here we have that amazing purple verbena, my other bloom for you. This is another plant that surprised the heck out of me. It will bloom a while longer, I think, since frost isn't predicted for a while yet.

These are the manager's strip gardens. I think the young tree in the first one might be a weed. Her gardens did nothing for most of the summer, also, so I'm thinking it must be our microclimate. This garden is almost completely in shade and I think she planted it well.

This garden has VERY little root room between the parking curb and the fence, and again, I think she planted it well... but even though it got almost as much sun as my flowerpot garden did, it also did nothing for a couple months after she first planted it this summer.

This is my neighbor's garden. She commandeered this little space between the driveway and the back fence, cleaned it up, weeded it out, and planted pansies and asters. Again, it is very slow to get started. There are a couple blooms on her pansies, though.

Walking through the neighborhood, I see that sticks are beginning to fall from the trees. It is so amazing that the trees just GIVE people sticks like that! Trees most definitely do not shed their young branches in the desert! Maybe it's because of the climate? Or because of the species... none of these trees grow in the southwest desert.

These brqanches demanded a pic. Can you see why?

Take a closer look....
LICHENS! Amazing, isn't it???
Now check this out... are they seedlings, growing in the pattern they fell?

Or is that branch resprouting? I couldn't tell!

Look at the trunk of the tree the branch fell from.

Moss, and mushrooms!!! OH, how I love Wichita!

My final pic... the mimosa tree at the back of the neighbor's yard. Those blossoms did what blossoms do. Look at all those pods!

What's blooming in your area right now?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Company's coming? Organizing all this STUFF....

{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{Gris}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}} Big hugs and welcome, darlin! I thought I would just post again, instead of answering each comment. I'm overdue for a post anyhow.

Organizing.... I think this might be a problem for a LOT of us "making" types, yanno? *looks around at the mess in here* lol, artist types seem to need to be able to SEE everything, have you noticed? So I have stacks and piles of stuff everywhere... because when I can't SEE it, when it's all tidily put away, I completely forget about it! I have been known in the past to buy things twice because I put the first one away and forgot all about it. *sheepish look* And when everything is put away, I can't seem to get started on making anything! I need to see my supplies in order to get inspired.

You can imagine this leaves a thrifter in a small space rather... um... floundering for organization. *now you know why there aren't many pics of the inside of my apartment, lol* Combine that with the recent grocery inflation, and I haven't got the money to buy the furniture to put everything away into, anyhow.

So what do you do when everything's a dusty mess (isn't it amazing how fast dust accumulates??) and someone is coming? Well, it depends on how much time you have. If you have a couple weeks, go to for a plan that really works.

If you only have a day or two? Do what counts the most--clean the bathroom first. Clean the counter and mirror, scrub out the sink, clean the toilet, scrub the bathtub, then either vacuum the carpet or sweep the floor and take out the trash. Done! If your bathroom is small, you can do all that (even with tons of clutter) in less than an hour with good cleaning products. My bathtub is permanently rusty and so is my medicine cabinet, but then the building is 79 years old *shrugs* AND I am more disabled than I used to be, so I don't expect to be able to clean perfectly. If you're busy or you have health problems, you shouldn't expect that of yourself, either. Do it as well as you can and tell yourself "done is beautiful."

Then tackle the kitchen. Use a clean dishcloth and dishtowel, and get out clean potholders, too. Then start with the sink; clear it out, scrub it, fill it with hot soapy water and get the dishes done. It is AMAZING how much difference that makes! Of course, if you have a dishwasher, that's faster and easier--but in any case, get the sink empty and clean, with all your cooking pots washed. Then do the counters. Get them obviously clean, even if they're cluttered. Scrub up your stove top. (I always seem to have to use steel wool on mine; luckily it's old fashioned and not one of those glass topped stoves!) Tackle the fridge next; throw away anything that smells bad or is moldy. Vacuum, or sweep and wash up the floor. Done is beautiful.

Now, where will the company sleep? Make sure you have clean bedding and clean towels! Then--this is the hard part I bet, lol--figure out where to put everything you have stacked on that bed or sofa. Bet you're thinking the same thing I am, right? "If I knew where to put it, it wouldn't have landed on the bed to begin with!"

Remember the danger here, that whatever you put away, you will forget about--and get a permanent marker to label the boxes or tubs you are going to pack stuff into!! The best and easiest way to deal with the clutter is to put everything into under-the-bed tubs, and then just slide it under the bed. Voila! You're done! But if you have to, put the items in boxes, stack them in a corner of the room and throw a tablecloth over them. Now make the bed, dust the furniture, and vacuum or sweep the floor. Done is beautiful.

Your guest can now safely use the restroom (remember to buy toilet paper and more soap, if necessary), get cleaned up (ooops---wash that shower curtain if it's mildewed!), eat whatever you fix, and sleep. The rest of the house? Well if they're coming to see YOU, they won't care about the house. If you have time to dust, that's good; if you can vacuum up the dog hair that's good; if you can make your stacks of stuff tidy that's good---but there are only so many hours in a day and an artist needs to be making art more than she needs to be cleaning.

After the company is gone? If you have the money, buy the kind of furniture that makes storage easy. I like those clear plastic dressers, china cabinets or bookshelves with glass fronts, clear underbed tubs on wheels--anything that corrals loose items, keeps the dust out, and still lets me see what I have. If I have to use cardboard boxes, it works best to label them. I've been known in the past to sponge paint boxes, then decoupage them with magazine or calendar illustrations, fancy napkins, printed tissue paper, or greeting cards. Once they're varnished they hold up nicely and at least they don't look like I'm ready to move at a moment's notice.

I've also noticed that some things don't need to be out. For instance, if I have my crochet pattern books out where I can see them, I can put the thread and yarn away in a dustproof box and I still get inspired by looking at the books.

Paper is best put away, also, not just because of dust but also because it's fragile, easily marred by dogs, cats, or simple bad luck. A dresser drawer works great for storing paper, but plastic tubs work too.

If you're short on money and need secure petproof storage, find out which of your friends or family members buy cat litter in buckets. They're easily washed out and hold a surprising amount of stuff. I have two in my bathroom, the clear ones from Tidy Cat, to hold sanitary supplies and extra toilet paper. They aren't pretty--their labels are printed on and I never did get around to sewing covers for them--but they are totally cat-and-dogproof, plus dustproof.

If you have storage space like a garage or a storage shed, you can look around for old desks, which are usually cheap if not free. They hold loads of stuff, and if the bottom one is sturdy, you can stack them and put boxes or tubs in the empty center space. Or, if you can find two the same height, you can use them as the ends of a big worktable made from plywood or from an old door. You can stack small bookshelves on them to make a hutch, too... not exactly a china cabinet, lol, but it works great for storage all the same.

If you have an extra end table or night stand, you can stack small bookshelves or plastic dressers on top for more storage. They work the same way on a low dresser.

If you find a dresser in the trash that is missing a drawer or two, you can use a couple layers of cardboard to make shelves and then slide baskets in. If the drawer guides are missing, you can make shelves out of yardsticks (check in the hardware store's paint department) cut to the right size and staple-gunned in--or you can use fewer yardsticks and make supports for the cardboard shelves, which is what I've done temporarily. My cardboard? Boxes from the post office that I haven't used to mail things yet--double duty, shelves for my craft supplies plus storage for the boxes themselves, which after all had to live SOMEWHERE. *grin* The backs of used art tablets would work too, especially the bigger ones.

Where to find free furniture? If you live near any apartment complexes, check the driveways and trash areas every month; people throw amazing things away when they move! Watch your street when it's time for bulk trash pickup, too, and also drive past big yard sales after they close. Also let your friends and family know that you're in the market for desks, bookshelves, plastic dressers, whatever it might be that they're willing to pass on for storage.

When I recognized how much furniture is available cheaply or for free, I decided that I didn't want to take anything that wasn't made of solid wood rather than plastic or pressboard. I've still got my eyes open for glass-fronted media cabinets--GREAT for paper!!--bookshelves, china cabinets, etc. Until I find them, I'll be happily using the bookshelves a friend gave me, and plotting and planning how to rearrange the furniture once more to make the place work better.

Friday, October 10, 2008


I have SIX baby bell-peppers and THREE baby eggplants in my lil flowerpot garden, all at once! lol!! Guess my Fall harvest will give me more than I got all Summer long! I had thought the garden was done last month, and almost tossed the plants... so glad I was lazy! *grin*

I'm working on another doily, size 80 thread again. Tis a five-point star for the holidays, and there are lacy fans between the points to make it round-ish. Pics will come a lil later. I found a couple more back issues of Magic Crochet and Decorative Crochet magazines, plus my Rita Weiss book, 101 Crochet Edgings. Tis fun to look through, pick and choose, and start something new!

It's funny how things take on their own lives... I look at the doily, and it seems like something someone else has made, something completely independent of me--and I marvel at it! Then I pick up my hook and get back to work. *wink*

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Struck dumb....

I was struck dumb. I literally couldn't say anything, and I walked away without speaking.... a friend of ours asked us yesterday, "Don't you just LOVE Palin?" and then, with adulation in her voice, "Isn't she such a Warrior Woman?"


*blink blink*

John McCain's Latest Beautiful Trophy Wife, a warrior woman? Um, aren't those two terms mutually exclusive? Wouldn't a Warrior have her OWN opinions? Wouldn't a Warrior live by her own well-thought-out values, rather than parroting the patriarchy and obediently falling in line with the existing Good Ol' Boy party planks? Would a Warrior Woman try to enforce one religion on a free people? This is a woman who tries to ban books. Hasn't mature adult thinking gotten a little beyond that point even in our culture... oh say... forty years ago? And doesn't it take a certain amount of mature adult thinking to be a Warrior?

Sarah Palin may think of herself as a Warrior--I don't know--but how can ANYONE look at her (or at ANY political candidate) so uncritically?

My definition of Warrior Woman isn't complete... I've never been called to articulate it before, so I know it when I see it but I can't always talk about it. Certainly it includes acceptance of a free and diverse society, and the willingness to stand up for that freedom of belief and thought which is the hallmark of a healthy society!

How can someone who wants to promote one religion--and who will fire any public employee who disagrees or resists--possibly be considered a Warrior under that definition? How can someone who would happily force her own child to marry someone unsuitable be entrusted with the welfare of all the children of America? How can someone who is bent on enforcing the already-failed ecological policies of the early twentieth century guide us into the twenty-first century? How can someone who cannot see ANY alternatives to war keep us safe in the modern world?

Here is another part of my definition of Warrior Woman: someone who knows how to avoid fighting when fighting is not necessary; someone who undertsands that fighting is the LAST resort, not the first action.

I'm not interested in debating politics (I myself am definitely not a Warrior Woman!), but I am very interested in definitions, in how we all perceive the world. So what is your definition of Warrior Woman? What do you see as the characteristics of a Warrior in this world?

Friday, October 3, 2008

I wouldn't be three again...

Really, I would NOT be three again, not for anything in this world....

The Doglet Groomer has a three year old, a bright happy active exuberant boy. He tries to be good, tries to understand the world and what's expected of him. He doesn't always succeed very well, but he really does try, yanno?

This morning he tried to be part of our conversation, but she told him to let us talk without interrupting. He tried, he really did... he went back to playing (the only way he knows how--exuberantly *wry smile*) with his toy firetruck. He ran it past Lady and she objected, so I picked her up; then he moved away and I put her back down. He kept running that firetruck back our way, though, and his mom kept trying to redirect him.

He just really didn't get it. He ran the truck past Lady again and I wasn't fast enough; she bit him before I could stop her. He was pretty upset. She didn't even leave a mark, mind you--she was "disciplining an unruly puppy," I think--but oh, he was aggrieved! And his morning went downhill from there... every three year old knows what's "fair" have you noticed? And it most certainly is NOT fair that someone ELSE did something REALLY bad; Ladybug BIT him!!--can you hear his indignation?--and then *he* got in trouble! So of course he got more and more upset, acted out and then eventually he really DID get in trouble.

I felt so badly for him. I'm pretty certain he just honestly doesn't understand that he did something to make Lady snap at him. I'm also pretty certain that he doesn't understand why on earth he got in trouble when he was trying to be good.... well *wry smile* he doesn't get it that he's not very successful yet at "being good" lol... but the poor kid, and my poor friend, too--both having such a rough morning when it started out so happy!

I've been thinking about it all day. It is so HARD to be three! I've heard people envy kids their "carefree lives" and I don't think that's really it... I think kids are under a ton of stress, trying to understand how to be good in a world that is mostly incomprehensible, with rules that don't make sense and consequences that just aren't fair. I wouldn't wish being three on my worst enemy.... and yanno, I wouldn't wish going to school on my worst enemy either. I remember how hard it was, how it didn't make sense, how I didn't know how NOT to get into trouble, how scared I was when I got in trouble despite all my best efforts to behave. And yanno what? I don't want to bring that on my friend's little boy. I don't want to be part of what squashes him. He's bright and exuberant and I want him to stay that way.

I have to figure out how to explain Lady to him in a way a three year old can truly understand. He knows she isn't scared of him... but I think I will tell him she is scared of things with wheels, like firetrucks and his tricycle. I hope it will help him understand, help the world make sense to him.

.........gods, not for anything on this earth would I be a child again........ *sigh*

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Weird and Wonderful Around the Neighborhood

So. You think there's reason for paranoia? You get the feeling somebody's watching you? You don't trust the government anymore?

In Phoenix, they disguise cell phone towers and security cameras as palm trees, big metal sculptures, some realistic looking, some artistic looking... but here in Wichita, we have a more... homegrown.... application.

WE use maple trees. Real ones. And we're blatant about it.

What's that? Can't see it? Take a closer look.
Somebody please pass me my tinfoil hat. Oh, and you can relax; this antenna's aimed at my sweet friend the Doglet Groomer, down the street. Maybe the CIA needs to use dog-lish spies now? lol!

Coming back towards home now. Say, do ya like this fancy garden bed alongside our complex? These lovely lil lavender daisies grow all over this neighborhood--like the violets in the grass--just weeds underfoot, most of them no bigger than two inches. But this plant here is special! It found itself some space in a garden bed!

Yeppers, that's right... it's SIX inches tall, growing in a crack of the sidewalk covered with a quarter inch of dust and dried leaves!

Life... it's everywhere! *grin*

Of course, sometimes life gets a bit confused... check out the lil five petal white blossom at the top center of this photo.

And then... oh yes.... a bird's nest in this young tree! They didn't waste any time; the tree was just planted in front of our complex this summer! (You can see the blossom better if you follow the curve of the branch in front of the nest.)

Ahhhh, here we go, the marigolds by our front door. Those irises in the background were glorious this past spring, and the marigolds have finally taken root and prospered this fall. They brighten everyone's day!

Tis so good to be home! Kick off your shoes, have a sea----er.... what's this? Oh! It seem the Self-Installing Cat Accessory, Module Three, is running the "Adorable Foldy Feets" Application on the Optional Chair Platform.... and I see she has installed the Optional Camera Flash Eye Enhancement Application as well!

Oh well, we didn't need to sit down anyhow, did we? lol!

A blog to check out

Here is a link to Arwen's blog--yes, Arwen of the 9 Word Poetry Challenge fame--she has a blog about Tarot, with examples, explanations, sample readings, beautiful illustrations, contests, and guest posts. She's insightful, compassionate, funny... and oh yeah--my other self. *wink* We started out as the AZ Self and CO Self, bonding online over poetry and heartbreak, each wishing the other had had an easier life and didn't have to understand what we were going through; down the road, I became the KS Self and she became the TX Self. Our lives are so much better now! It shows in our blogs!

Tell her Cath sent ya... better yet, tell her the KS Self sent ya! *grin* Look for her latest guest post and leave a comment for a chance to win!