Tag: September 2011

thurs 1 sept 2011

Entry #1 on this page (tagged: september)

NaBloPoMo September: RETURN

Well? Yeah. Not sure if I'm returning or not!

I certainly don't feel inspired to blog.

August was not easy on me.

I've still got a few disasters to "clean up". But hopefully the major annoyances are behind me.

And I'm looking to change the mood around here...

day job
fri 2 sept 2011

Entry #2 on this page (tagged: september, , )

My coworker, Marianne visited the warehouse today... yes, that Marianne. ;)

"Homemade bees wax lip balm, made by my sister!!" she announces, holding a handful of decorated tubes.

"Not Vegan!" I announce.

ha. We have a chat and it turns out, Marianne's sister keeps her own bees... and lets them die every winter. ugh!

And that is why I am vegan. Vegan's don't consume animal products, and bees are in the animal kingdom. Bees make honey so that they can survive through the winter. It is absolutely despicable that humans think that stealing food is okay.

Anyway! Later in the day, as a peace offering... Or maybe Marianne's just awesome... she gave me a charcoal pencil set. Which includes a most interesting white charcoal pencil. White.

oh my. I am already playing with the set, normal black charcoal pencils included... but it's the white that I may have fallen in love with. It feels like normal charcoal... but it is so very WHITE. whoa. (of course, I am marking on a purple sheet of paper.) (hm, I think I might need some royal blue paper?)

sat 3 sept 2011

Entry #3 on this page (tagged: september, )

It's the start of a long weekend in the US, if you don't have a service job! Which I don't, and I'm grateful because I really need the time off.

Today I am taking care of some August chaos. Got the car looked at. It wasn't good news that they gave me, but I was expecting worse. So I guess that's okay!

Mainly, I wanted to address the problem of my mail box. Due to the annoyances of august and summer-time, I had to quit all of my snail mail projects. Since I'm not sending mail out, I am not recieving any. And that's kind of depressing!

Unfortunately, my happiest snail mail project -- the monthly postcard that I send out to friends, family and vegans -- has gotten... well... overwhelming! There are currently 45 people on my list!

It's just too much. But! It's my happy project! I get to share my photography. I type out a little story on the back. And everyone gets a personal comment. It makes me happy, envisioning how happy my friends are when they open their mailbox and find a awesome postcard!

I don't want to quit this project. I don't even want to cut back on this project. But I have to change something because the fact is, I can't keep up with it!

So I skipped the "july" postcard. And I am just finishing up the "august" postcard this weekend. In the future, skipping a month is going to be perfectly fine!
FINE, I say!


Here's the July postcard that you probably missed...

Roof top crows

Urban Wildlife. and ♥ crows in particular!!!

sun 4 sept 2011

Entry #4 on this page (tagged: september, )

I woke up this morning thinking about an incomplete conversation that happened at the day job, weeks ago. *shakes head with a smile* Crazy stuff goes through the head when you are waking up, and falling asleep!

I'm not sure where the topic came from, but we were talking about the amazing variety of food. I was agreeing, but my coworker said to me, "But there are so many things you don't eat!"

"Huh?" I said. I am a bit picky about my vegetables, but this is not common knowledge at work. "What do you mean?" I asked.

"You know," she said. "You don't eat any meat... or cheese." She implied great limitations for my diet.

I laughed out loud! But before I could make my own comment -- which, honestly, they have heard before -- someone else picked up the conversation and it went other places.

My usual comment, after laughing, would have been, "Dead animals are not food!" And neither is cheese.

Ha. I am so used to my vegan-ness that it surprises me when people point out that I am weird!

And the reason that I laughed in the first place: I consider a meat-eating lifestyle to be a more limiting diet.

People don't realize the vastness of vegan cuisine.

never enough time
mon 5 sept 2011

Entry #5 on this page (tagged: september, )

Yep, I'm busy enjoying my long weekend (ie, having a few more drinks)!! I got plenty done, but there's still plenty on my To Do list.

The important stuff got done, tho, so that's good!

GoodReads group, The PostCard Exchange

High on my list was my GoodReads group, The PostCard Exchange. I became the new moderator this summer -- the owner of the group has been awol since 2009.

As a happy moderator, I have initiated a monthly postcard trade. There are just a handful of active members, but I was very pleased that our first postcard trade in August went without a hitch!!

Thusly, I begin the September PC trade. :)

The group is open to the public, so be sure to check it out! If you're interested, just sign up for a GoodReads account and join our group.

Right now, we are exchanging one postcard a month... but I have plans for expansion!!

oh the plans. And yet, I still haven't changed the group graphic. I distinctly remember that I was going to make it "way more exciting!"

*laughs* Well, I will eventually!
  The PostCard Exchange at GoodReads

tues 6 sept 2011

Entry #6 on this page (tagged: september)

At the beginning of the year, I tallied all the books I had bought for myself but had not yet read. The number was around 50 and I made it my goal to reduce this pile: Read the books, and not buy any more.

Well, that never worked. My book buying desires are way stronger than any silly "goals" I make up!

So I decided I would have to read an old book every time I bought a new book. Yep, I kept a list and everything!

The problem with this system is that I would acquire books for free. Do I have to put them on this list too?

I made a little side list for the free books.

But then I broke down and bought three books at once. And I didn't write them on my list. And I've been ignoring that stupid list ever since!

So... my new books have become countless...

10 books bought... haha!

The Counted:
1. Genji Monagatari, 2. Change of Heart, 3. Pope Joan, 4. Vegan's Daily Companion, 5. Edge of the Sea, 6. Under the Sea Wind, 7. Deathless, 8. Guernsey Literary, 9. Last Unicorn Graphic Novel, 10. Plastic, Toxic Love Story.
(Side List: The Enjoyment of Lit, With a Little Help, Madame Bovary, Jap. Fairy Tales)

I have read (or am currently reading) all but three of these books! That's something, right?!

*rolls eyes*

wed 7 sept 2011

Entry #7 on this page (tagged: september)

My partner plays pinball and in August he competed in an official tournament. He got second place!

And he is now ranked among the world's top pinball players! He is number 865. Meaning there are only 864 people in the whole world who are better than him.

In the United States, he is 329th!!!

All that with just one evening of pinball. :) I am quite proud of him and can't wait for his next tournament and his new, even better ranking.

  World Pinball Player Rankings

no garden time
thurs 8 sept 2011

Entry #8 on this page (tagged: september, )


This is our third year at our nearby community garden, and this was the year that I was going to Pretend to be a Real Gardener!

It turns out I am a fair weather friend when it comes to the garden plot.

I have learned how to kill the wildflowers (aka "weeds"). and I visited the garden several times a week when it was convenient. But then I stopped visiting in August, when I had to work overtime at the day job.

And now it's just crazy hot! 90°+ days... No air conditioning at work... No air conditioning at home... and sitting in the garden to pull weeds under the blazing sun just isn't going to happen.

sighs. Significant Other is awesome, going out there to water every day!! He brings home loads of zucchini, cucumbers and basil.

fri 9 sept 2011

Entry #9 on this page (tagged: september)

And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
~~ Sylvia Plath

(Strangely, I have somehow not read The Bell Jar.)

I love this quote.

The "everything in life is writable"!! That just delights me.

And I would apply it to so much more... "everything in life is drawable"!! "everything in life is photographable"!! "everything in life is crochetable"!! "everything in life is makable"!! "everything in life can be sent through snail mail"!!


sat 10 sept 2011

Entry #10 on this page (tagged: september, )

I visited our garden plot this morning, first time in ages. It is my responsibility to do the weeding, and the wildflowers and grasses are starting to take over.

I was surprised that our single surviving marigold was blooming!


I worked on the weeds for a little while.

There's a new little pea plant, right in the middle of the trifecta of cucumber/zucchini/cucumber! Where did he come from?! Volunteer pea plant!

The many tomato plants have all had fruits on them for weeks, but nothing's turning red. It's our crazy weather: a week of 90°, a week of 70°, another week of 90°. The tomatoes are confused. Maybe the coming week of more hot weather will put some colour on those poor plants.

Day of Service and Rememberance
sun 11 sept 2011

Entry #11 on this page (tagged: september)

Just a moment of silence... before we get to work on our volunteer project!

mon 12 sept 2011

Entry #12 on this page (tagged: september)

The weekend was so short, and all of a sudden it's monday and I'm at work and it's all stupid and annoying. arg.

Over the weekend, one of my goals (besides general goofing off!) was to do a bit of extra reading. When you are reading four books at once, it takes a while to actually finish a book. And especially since all of my current books are non-fiction and not exactly light reading!

My favorite of the current four is Rachel Carson's The Edge of the Sea. It is just amazing! I have never lived near an ocean (well, except now: I'm about 60 miles away), and I knew almost nothing about the creatures who live at the shore. Thusly, I haven't been terribly interested in driving those 60 miles, tho I have done it a few times.

The book has sections on rocky shores, sandy beaches and coral reefs, and it's all so very interesting! So many little creatures. You just have to be patient and wait for low tide to see them in their tide pools. Or many of them are active (or glowing!) at night.

Now, I can almost picture myself going to the ocean for a day and evening at the shore. Looking for sea critters!

Mostly it just makes me happy to learn something new about the world.

tues 13 sept 2011

Entry #13 on this page (tagged: september)

I biked to the garden after work today and was surprised to see Significant Other just walking in at the same time! He watered the plants and I knocked down another section of weeds.

The crows were being very talkative (aka loud and obnoxious! :). I looked around and saw they were having a gathering in a tree...

crows in a tree

I wonder what they were telling each other! Must have been very important.

june postcard
wed 14 sept 2011

Entry #14 on this page (tagged: september, )


This was the picture postcard I sent out in June.

Between our home and the community garden, the bike path runs right next to the creek. There are always critters to be seen, so I am always on the look-out. Usually it's mallard ducks tho!

I was thrilled to see a raccoon!

She was on the other side of the creek, and completely unconcerned with me or any of the bikers going by. She was wading along the edge and I took pictures for two minutes before she disappeared into the vegetation.

Since it was a grey, overcast day, most of my photos were blurry. This one of her looking at me was probably the luckiest picture I've ever taken!!

Still, I'm disappointed that her beautiful tail isn't showing! Never Satisfied! *laughs*

thurs 15 sept 2011

Entry #15 on this page (tagged: september)

Another critter I discovered along the bike path...


This is a nutria. They are rodents who live in and near water and are an invasive species in the US, due to the fur industry.

Everyone around here thinks they are "vicious", but I think they are rather cute. :)

I was within touching distance of this one for four minutes and he never bothered to attack me! *laughs* He studied me while I took photos of him. I was telling him that the bike path was dangerous and he took me at my word and headed back towards his home in the creek.

And then he started munching on the leaves of a blackberry vine. ha! Blackberries are an invasive species here as well!!

yay vegan friday
fri 16 sept 2011

Entry #16 on this page (tagged: september, )

It's been ... interesting ... this week at the day job and I am quite glad it is done!

The wonderful Significant Other picked me up at work, having just stopped at Chocolate Decadence for loads of chocolates!

Oh sweet raspberry chocolate,
how have I lived for weeks without you???

*laughs* Honestly, this is the best chocolate I've ever had. And it's vegan! The raspberry chocolate is addicting. and for extra sweet, you go for the chocolate covered caramels. and for the mornings, you go for the chocolate covered dried strawberries.


Anyway! After work, SO took me to the Go Healthy Cafe and I got my regular vegan Kickin' It Lime Style burrito. Sadly, I left the building without my "extra lime sauce". I lived through it, but the lime sauce is what turns a rice-and-bean-plus-extras into something awesome!

We ate our dinner while watching this week's Warehouse 13. Yep, I kinda like that show.

And now... I get to think about what I'm doing this weekend!!

Postcards? That's a given! I've got a GoodReads PC exchange about ebooks. I've got a Swap-Bot PC with a frog. Not to mention PostCrossing. Or my personal, monthly postcard: there is no september pc yet.

But I'd like to get some drawing in? Some crocheting? Maybe a cut-out bookmark thingee?

Or maybe just some hiking?


sat 17 sept 2011

Entry #17 on this page (tagged: september, )

A very quiet day, probably it's just what my poor abused brain -- and body -- needs! heh.

Some Reading. Some Postcards. Some Breathing!

my new address book

A little while ago, I bought my very first address book.

Since I make my own postcards on the computer (using the photos I take with the digital camera!), I have a list of all my snail mail addresses on the computer as well. When I print up postcards, I also print the address on the back... Printed addresses are easier to read by postal employees, and I definitely want to make their job easier!

But I have this weird obsession about buying postcards, as well. And if I'm going to use these bought postcards, I am going to need to write in the address. And when I am writing -- physically, with a pen -- I don't want to be sitting in front of the computer!

Thus, the address book.

It was kind of fun to fill in the new address book! The lines are so narrow! I think, "my 0.2 nib pen"? Nope - It requires the 0.1mm nib!

And then, all those haphazard addresses.

It's... indescribable!

I know these people.
Which is to say, I have their address and I know some random tidbit about them and so they are on my address list.


Well anyway. I am keeping my new address book with my little stack of bought and pre-printed postcards. My plan/vision is to write on the postcards in the evening, kind of like my paper journal.

And just send them!

odds and ends
sun 18 sept 2011

Entry #18 on this page (tagged: september)

  Oh My Gosh! There are carrots! growing! in the garden!! Calm Down -- the last time I noticed carrots, I weeded them and then they died shortly after that.

But these carrots are going to live! Well. I hope they live. I had two different kinds of carrot seeds this year, a hybrid and an heirloom. I planted them about six times over. One time four plants came up. This time, a good handful are growing... The last time I sowed seeds was 14 aug. and these plants are all about two inches high and living under some borage leaves (which I ripped out of the ground without even thinking about it!) (they will be excellent mulch!).

  Doodle Art Alley, free coloring pages I love this site! It gives me something to do with all those Copic markers I have. *laughs* This is a new page of free doodles that you can print up and colour... I like numbers 3 and 7... but I LOVE number 8!! Of course, I might have a bias towards 8 anyway, but the fishies are cute!

I bought her first colouring book, last year I think. And now she's gathering pledges to get her second book published... Kick Starter: Doodle Art Alley

  a weekend of movies... What Dreams May Come, the end of Shawshank and now The DaVinci Code. huh... sitting in front of the tv is such a waste of time! ha!

sunflower september
mon 19 sept 2011

Entry #19 on this page (tagged: september)


You know, I always feel guilty on monday about the lazy weekend I just had! *laughs* but I never do anything to change, so lazy weekends keep happening!

public speaking
tues 20 sept 2011

Entry #20 on this page (tagged: september)

Today at the day job, I decided I had to conduct a meeting.

A short meeting. I had a list of a few little reminders for the people in the warehouse. Less than five minutes of talking. And less than ten people, staring at me, most of them my friends.

Now, let me tell you something... In real life, I am the most shy person you will ever meet! I don't talk to people. And I'm an extreme introvert, I go out of my way so I don't have to talk to people.

Now, let me tell you something else! In theory, I don't have a problem with public speaking.

ha! Isn't that funny?!

Unfortunately, in practice... I talk too fast, and then I hyperventilate, and my brain shuts down so I can't think of anything clever to add to my speech!


Altho the hyperventilation is physically uncomfortable, it's the shut down brain that annoys me the most! I like to keep things light-hearted and I love to make people smile. And when I can't think, I can't do that.

Oh well.

august postcard
wed 21 sept 2011

Entry #21 on this page (tagged: september, , )


This was the photo I sent out as my august postcard. As I said on the pc, Borage (Starflower) grows wild in our community garden plot. It is a good companion plant to tomatoes because it attracts bees and repels horn worms.

Significant Other mentioned today that he had discovered it's defense against animals. ha!

He went to move one of the branches. "Do you know what I did wrong?" he asks me.

I laugh and say, "you touched it!"

You see all the little furry stuff around the buds? That furry stuff covers all the leaves and stems as well. It looks really soft and fluffy!

But when you grab it, you definitely say "ow!"

Or, in SO's case, you definitely curse loudly.

"weekly wrap"
thurs 22 sept 2011

Entry #22 on this page (tagged: september, )

I've been wandering about on Swap-Bot again, looking for postcard swaps to participate in.

I have run into this Weekly Wrap Postcard Swap a few times but I haven't joined one yet. I think it's a pretty good idea tho...

You list five things that happened this week and put a (+) if they were postitive and a (-) if they were negative. Gonna give it a try here:

(+) I finished two books this week. Edge of the Sea and Field Notes on Science and Nature.

(-) I now have zero postcards traveling at my PostCrossing and I had meant to do some reviving over there.

(-) I walked to the day job on wednesday and now my left hip is aching. But at least I got some extra exercise! (+)

(-) I haven't visited the garden at all this week! Oh Lazy "Pretend" Gardener! And I'd like to check on the carrots!

(+) Next month is Vegan Month of Food which makes me happy!

fri 23 sept 2011

Entry #23 on this page (tagged: september)

Yay, the weekend!

Sadly, I feel another lazy weekend coming on!


Well. I do have a couple of crafty things on my list of things to do. And there's that garden thing, so I'm sure there will be pics and tales of carrots and such. (alive or dead, that is the question!)

Okay, so in the meantime... a link or two that I want to keep track of...

  Share Your Nature Sightings
an interesting article about bird watching and websites!

  Copic Colour Spotlights: E33 Sand, Y17 Golden Yellow and BG10 Cool Shadow
I love this series over at the Copic blog! Marianne is making the most wonderful drawings based on these colours!! The E33 especially resonated with me since I was reading Rachel Carson's The Edge of the Sea... and here is Marianne making art of it!! :)

  Banned Books Week, Sept 24 - Oct 1
Heck Yeah, I read banned books!!

sat 24 sept 2011

Entry #24 on this page (tagged: september)

Today I made a few things!

  Made some envelopes out of very shiny wrapping paper! They are delightful, but I have no idea if they will go through the post. :) of course, I'm gonna try.

  Crocheted a dish cloth. When I finished, I decided I was bored with my current pattern, so I went looking for a booklet I bought a while ago with new dish cloth patterns. And I couldn't find it! Arg!

  Of course, I made some postcards today. Just a couple for a Swap-Bot that I'm in. I "should" be thinking about my september pc instead!

  Bread! I made bread. Well, okay, I make bread about every other weekend, so it's not that special. But still! I made it! :)

sun 25 sept 2011

Entry #25 on this page (tagged: september)


I joined Care2 on 30 Jan 2005, and I have a few really good friends on that network. But I have not been active there for several years... I would do the daily clicks, occasionally, but on dial-up the clicks were quite time consuming.

But now we have DSL. Granted, it's the slowest DSL on the planet! But it's faster than dial-up, and I can now do all the daily clicks in what? 60 seconds?

very much more convenient. I've been doing them every once in a while, since it's so much faster... but I don't really support any of the organizations that I'm clicking for. For example, the "Primates" click is for the Jane Goodall Institute. No denying: Jane Goodall is a wonderful woman and she does wonderful work, but she supports animal testing. I find that despicable, and I would never send money to any of her orgs. But: a free click? Yes, I can do that.

It's a similar story with most of the rest of the click organizations. I will click, but I won't support.

When I first joined Care2, I was active in a couple groups and I even blogged there for a bit. About the time I was spending less time at Care2, they were introducing the Butterfly Rewards system.

At the time, I didn't pay much mind to it. But apparently, it is pretty cool...

One of my Care2 friends (*waves at AJ*) really works the Butterfly Rewards. I mean, she Works It Baby!! ha. It's quite impressive! She has planted a forest with her Butterfly Rewards! Seriously, she is approaching 1,000 trees! awesome.

So. Here I am with my measly 700 Butterflies. With 500 Butterflies, I can plant a tree! hey cool! Plus, with 200 Butterflies, I donated a day of clean water! yay!

That was at the end of August. I am now ready to get another tree.

Yeah, I don't work the system like my friend does. Darn it. It will take me centuries to get the forest!

Me!! I Won!!
mon 26 sept 2011

Entry #26 on this page (tagged: september)


Winner of the World Gratitude Day Giveaway
at Letters and Journals

How awesome is that?! I've never won anything... and now I can't say that anymore! *laughs* Yay! I won a journal!

The Journal is by EcoJot, and they use recycled paper which is great. And, ya know, I think they may have used EcoJot as a paper supplier at my day job at one point. I'll have to go check on that!

oh. I hope that doesn't disqualify me! Forget that you read that, okay?! ;)

Anyway, Jackie over at Letters and Journals really is wonderful. You should see the huge giveaways she sets up every month, and all the little giveaways as well! Yay!

I Read Banned Books
tues 27 sept 2011

Entry #27 on this page (tagged: september)

September 24 to October 1 is Banned Books Week, during which we celebrate the freedom to read!

Here's the list of Banned and Challenged Classics. And of that list, I've read:

9. 1984, by George Orwell
16. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
17. Animal Farm, by George Orwell
33. The Call of the Wild, by Jack London
40. The Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien
45. The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair

I bought #57. Sophie's Choice, by William Styron... But it started out so boring I had to set it aside! *laughs*

And here's the list of Frequently challenged books of the 21st century. From the 2010 list, I've read (or listened to at the day job):

1) And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
3) Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
5) The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
10) Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer

So many books to read, so little time!

apr/may pc
wed 28 sept 2011

Entry #28 on this page (tagged: september, )

My april postcard with red rhododendrons...

red rhododendrons


And my may postcard with pink rhodos.

I love all the millions of different colours of rhododendrons blooming here in the spring. The variety just amazes me and I look forward to them every year.

Of course, now we are running into autumn, and I'm looking forward to the trees changing colour!

thurs 29 sept 2011

Entry #29 on this page (tagged: september)

So, I see the new Kindle Fire went up for pre-order today. Colour screen, free movies, web browsing, not to mention the apps and the games... ha, doesn't sound like many books are going to be read there!! *laughs*

The kindle I have is now called the "Kindle Keyboard". (it used to be "the latest generation", or Kindle 3.) I bought it in May this year as a birthday present to myself. So far I have read 15 books on it... mostly bought books, a couple free books.

an incredibly handy feature is the ability to sample books. Usually, I see a book I want and I just buy it. Thusly, my piles of 50+ unread books. Now, I just download the sample, which is usually the first chapter or so.

This is going to help SO MUCH with my piles!! I've already got 19 samples... That's 19 books I have not bought! Not to say I won't eventually buy them... but I can buy them when I'm ready to read them!

*laughs* What a concept, huh! You'd think that's how a wishlist works. But my wishlist is so overwhelming, I quit using it years ago! And then the books I wanted went out of print: ARG! Similar things will happen with my sample list, of course... It will soon get overwhelming, and my kindle will soon be obsolete and the digital books might not transfer to a new device.

So anyway. The only thing that annoyed me with my kindle was that I couldn't read it in the dark. My old eReader was a Palm handheld, back lit screen so I could read in bed without having to turn on a light.

I got a little LED clip-on. And decorated it with copic markers... :)

kindle clipon LED

And now my insomnia hours are productive again! ha.

fri 30 sept 2011

Entry #30 on this page (tagged: september)

NaBloPoMo September: RETURN

Hey, it's the end of the month and Yay, I've typed here every day! Not too bad for the rather iffy beginning.

And actually, I'd like to keep going; I still have a few topics stored up. :) But I'm not going to sign up for another month of daily blogging...

A few weeks ago, little Boo the guinea pig hit a new level of old and decrepit. Since then, her care has gotten complicated and time consuming.

She's still a happy piggy... I just don't have as much time for my projects.

And anyway, I've signed up for a mini journal exchange over on Swap-Bot, for the month of October. I'm excited, because this will be my first package exchange. Up til now, I've just traded postcards. And now I'm going to make a whole book and write in it and everything!

*laughs* of course, I am totally behind on my other mailing projects! Haven't made my sept postcard, haven't sent any letters lately, haven't done this and haven't done that!

ha. well, I guess it'll all get done eventually!

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