Friday, August 30, 2013

Five on Friday: August 30, 2013

Almost the end of summer, even tho I know it's technically around til the Autumn Equinox - September 21 I think? And yes, here in MD, it often seems likes summer well into October. This weekend is usually considered the end of summer with the long Labor Day weekend and the traditional return to school.  I truly don't get going back to school mid August. I'm glad that wasn't part of my going to school years.

1. On the summer note, this has not been a great year for fruit. There are still peaches at one of the grocery stores for 99c a lb but I'm not sure if they are worth getting. Not a great amount of flavor this year. I may have a few figs left to pick on our tree but the birds are out in force and I don't mess with a flock of birds. Sadly, my neighbor isn't doing much picking this year. I think his main tree is too tall for him to try and climb a ladder into it. I may see about pruning mine so it doesn't get taller.

2. My FitBit wristband bit the dust. Putting the band on after it was too loose over night, I ended up snapping it and it came unglued. Literally. It's now ready to be picked up by UPS and replaced. I tried getting another wristband at Best Buy but no luck. No bands and not much else in the whole tracker field. Oh well...maybe I'll have a long weekend break for tracking.

3. While the FitBit bit the dust, I also felt like I was ready to this a.m. at aerobics. I log that hour as Zumba on the FB since we do a lot of Latin dance routines. I think the humidity is getting to us even though we are in an air-conditioned room. I could have laid down on the floor and gone to sleep when we were done. I didn't though since the Chair exercisers were headed in as we left.

4. On my way home I snapped this. Is this a sign from God that I am meant to be a couch potato since this new store is only a couple of blocks away??? That's one worth pondering. Actually it isn't since with our old house and its small rooms we are maxed out with a 40" screen.

5.  I was the only student in today's Chair Yoga and that was great. The teacher's mother died last weekend and I think the quiet of the yoga helped us both. I was able to share a finger hold for her sadness/grief and we did a mediation at the end sending light to anyone. I sent it to her mother and mine and I felt the sadness ...and tears welled up. I think our mothers miss us too. It was all good.

So for those of you on a long weekend - enjoy it and be safe! Everyone the same. :)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Project Life: Week 31

Food, family, more food, and then bits of the SEWN projects. How 'bout those right-from-the-chicken brown and eggs!! Talk about fresh..... Thank you Rod.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tuesday Tutorial: Cut Out Text

How I Finally Wrote Down the Steps

KPertiet Cranberry Twill no longer sold at Designer Digitals

Each time I think I will remember how to do this, I, of course, forget and have to google the technique, and hope I'll find a method I can understand.

Earlier this summer, I saw the steps - somewhere - and made this. The shape can be any shape but this is an Amy Wolff one from her Date Cutouts. I started by filling in the cut out word, Us, and making it just a scalloped circle. The text is landi_echo. If the background of this page were yellow or some other color that is the color, not the white,  that would show where those four numbers are. That is to say that the white is not ON either of these elements; it's what shows through because the text above and the numbers below are cut out.  Got that?

Ok, we'll start with some of the steps. These are the steps I wrote to make it clear to me, and if it's mud to you, I'm sorry. Ask me and maybe we can figure it out. I am in PSE10 and on a Mac. If you're on a PC, when I say cmd (command) you say ctrl (control).

1. create new layer (background) & make it a distinct color so you can see the effect of the cut out when done
2. create another new layer above the background
3. on that layer create a shape or plunk a simple .png like that twill above or the scalloped circle above
4. simplify your shape if it was created with the shape tool  - over in the layers panel right click on the shape and select simplify
5. create another new layer
6. write text on your new layer
7. simplify text (see number 4)
8. merge simplified text and simplified shape

9. magic wand function-click on shape with text on screen (you'll get marching ants)

10 right click on shape & select inverse (which means the text)  - you still have marching ants

11. hit delete and text (i.e. the inverse )is gone (yes???)

12. cmd-d to eliminate marching ants - then delete the background layer (the lavender color below the shape)

 13.  You now have a label shape with cut out text - the text area is now transparent

I believe this process could be simplified (writing the text ON the shape to begin with and then simplifying the lot?) but I haven't taken the time to check that out yet.  If anyone knows an easier way or a shorter way PLEASE let me know! Simpler is almost always better in my book.  If this works for you, again, I'd be glad to hear and see your examples.  Have fun!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sunday Reflections: August 25 2013

I haven't done this reflection for a while but it just seems like it's time again.

Outside my window...there is a fig tree, my own tree, finally bearing fruit.

I am thinking...that I am grateful to have stayed home last night. I watched 3 PBS shows of English detectives. Three shows all set in the Great North.


I am thankful...for all of it.

In the husband is eating his breakfast, and once again he's feeling the chill of the late summer morning.

I am pajamas.

I am creating...envelopes for SEWN mail art I want to send out tomorrow.

I am Ikea today, probably.

I am wondering...if I have time to make more SEWN cards today too.

I am reading...The Reluctant Fundamentalist. Maybe I can squeeze that in today to finish in one fell swoop.

I am hoping...that the day remains as calm as I expect it to be. I'm hoping I don't fill it with too much.

I am looking forward to... every second of it!

I am to use my FitBit - in fits and starts.

Around the house...the air is cool and the mood is calm.

I am pondering...not very much. My mind is enjoying the silence of a Sunday morning.

A favorite quote for today...Be still and know that I am God.

One of my favorite still blogging and reading others' blogs. As was said on The Digi Show, we get a chance to view others' lives, see how they live, see how they think, and we get to expand our own world.  Happy Sunday to you!

This idea comes from The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Five on Friday: August 23, 2013

Ah...Friday. Even tho I'm retired, Friday still has a bit of that Phew feeling because I have no exercise classes on Saturday or Sunday. My own kind  of weekend.

1. Talking with a relative this week, we agreed that it's way too late in our lives to deal with high school/teenage kind of drama. (High school students are allowed this kind of 'foolishness' because that's appropriate to their stage in life.)  But being sucked into this kind of drama whether at work or on Facebook etc  Naw...count us out. Saying no to the drama feels really good.

2. Yes! I finally got the Fitbit I wanted and will have to google around to answer some of the questions I have. FB says restless during the night. I say awake. 

3. Tracking food? I bit that bullet and finally started to do it too. Will I eat fewer not-so-great foods if I 'have to' write it down?  And finding the calories of stuff will be an ongoing little project I sense.

4.  My grandson has started college, with his first class yesterday.  Right now Dad is at home taking use-it-or-lose-it leave but in a week, the effect of losing one driver will affect the rest of the family. A different kind of missing him.

5.  I shifted my JinShinJyutsu energy work this week. After a weekend class with the wonderful 6 scheduled sessions, my knee and ankle are feeling a lot better. Letting go of a few things also helps a lot.  I see hope that the muscle issues can resolve without surgery.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Project Life Week 30

Yes, I know. Week 30 was a few weeks ago but that's how it was. It's been a bit of catch up recently but that's life, isn't it?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Five? Not Even One On Friday

Totally worn out so I think it's going to be a quiet couple of days which will include a good bit of sleeping.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Project Life: 13 wk 29

With life so busy for me lately, sadly the SEWN projects had to be put on hold for a while which made me sad. But, godwilling, things are getting back to normal and I'm catching up on the documents of previous weeks. It's harder to do when they aren't as fresh in your mind but I still manage to keep my photos sorted by date and my calendar and Day One fill in the blanks.

But you know what??? That week 30 layout is actually Week 29, or is it....

Monday, August 12, 2013

AAM Monday LIttle Time for Fun

I'm sorry to have missed my time on my blog but lately I have been trying to tidy up the final threads on some volunteer work.  Between that and the stress of a few family and friend issues, it has not been the August I had hoped it would be. I didn't retire for this, but as with most things, they resolve in the end. Resolution just hasn't just come yet, I'm afraid.

We did get to go to the Washington DC Congressional Cemetery 'Goat Festival' as I call it. Goats are brought in by a volunteer org (No not mine!) and they happily munch away doing major cleanup of the cemetery grounds for free.  Unfortunately, neither of us had time to go watch them until the next to the last day when the grounds looked pretty darn good.

looking in as we arrive - no goats visible
lots of dog walkers and families - We all follow the Goat Signs
A few of the more recent tombstones caught our eye. This one was very poignant.

"They gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one."

It was a hot and oh so humid morning but we traipsed to the cemetery edge and say the goats happily eating away outside the main grounds.

A beautiful allee of trees.

Hot, sweaty as from an aerobics class, we slooowly trudged back to our...blessed car and air/conditioning.  Next year, I want to go earlier in the week of munching which I seriously wish were in October not August.

Now I just hope to have August be the quiet month I had anticipated. Starting next week perhaps???

Friday, August 2, 2013

Five on Friday: August 2, 2013

August? Seriously? Already? Well, not being a fan of summer with its accompanying humidity round here, I kind of relish August. I say kind of because our heat can go on into October. Oh well, our air-conditioning works so why should I gripe...

This week a few saying came back to me. There are some sayings that are particular to a family and others that are particular to a period of time. Others come out of my husband's mouth and I look at him and think " Where in the heck did he get that phrase???" and often I really don't know what he means. Other phrases, I brought into our marriage and he has adopted them.

1.  Up in Sadie's room, behind the clock - This one comes from my late mother in law and was always used to answer a (stupid) question asked by a child or spouse about where something was. "Ma, where's the loaf of bread???" Mother sighs, and says "Up in Sadie's room behind the clock!" rather than saying "in front of your eyes, you stupid child...."  In recent years, I learned that this phrase had its origin in Prohibition days. Hearing that line, a 'customer' would know the booze was available.

2. "Waiting for the 84 bus..." This one comes from my first marriage, and the 84 bus ran (maybe still does) between York and Harrogate in Yorkshire. I often took this bus and could see it coming from my bedroom window when it was about 5 miles away.  Since I then had to 'wait for the 84 bus' to arrive at my corner, any waiting became ..."Waiting for the 84 bus". Standing around waiting for a spouse, child etc was a good time to use this phrase if asked what you were doing.

my house near that green football pitch

3.  "Just like downtown" was a late 60s version of excellent, awesome, wicked, whatever the teenage phrase for some positive superlative. We lived outside Washington DC and anything REALLY good became 'just like downtown' where all things seemed bigger, better and more desirable.

4. "Taking sand"  I truly never heard of this one til my current husband spit it out. Huh??? I figured out that it had to be something negative but the closest I can get it to is 'getting grief" on something. Nothing found googling this one and I've learned not to ask for him to explain yet again.

5. "Kin khao" This is what our Thai maid used to say in calling us to eat, no matter which meal it was.  Somehow it always sound like 'Tahn Khao" which is what the phrase became in our household, even after we left Thailand and lived in countries with other languages. Maybe because it goes up at the end of the phrase? Maybe because some things suit certain languages better than others. btw, it literally means 'eat rice' so when you want to call you children to dinner, no matter what they're eating,  say "Kin Khao!" Sadly this one is no longer in my day to day usage and probably not in my children's. A casualty of divorce I suspect.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

I sew, I sew

I am making slow progress with my SEWN class but that's ok with me. What is not ok, is how the cut paper and sewing bits has taken over too much space in my house. Today and/or tomorrow is the time to get more bits sewn and then get the sewing machine out of the dining room.  My dh has not complained as we have all of our meals in the kitchen but with our open plan, that dining room is always visible.

Sewing upstairs means putting the sewing machine on my computer table or...setting up a card table. I have filled this room with so many things it cannot take too much more without my falling over myself.  But enough about my challenges... because we haven't even discussed the time it takes for painted and gessoed papers to dry!! They take so much space! Finito.

Here is what I have done...

Now I just have to get some more bits sewn and then put them away for a bit. I need a week of TIDY and maybe get back to the digital for a bit. Then it will be time to make a mess again. Is that your process at all? or do you happily live in the artistic clutter?

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