Saturday, September 27, 2014

there's lions in them thar' holes

...or another reason yet that you should read to your children

posted by: jennifer

so for about the past year or so we have noticed these small divots in the loose dirt under our hundreds of years old, live oak.

at first i just thought one of the kids was walking around poking a stick into the ground intermittently, but then i crossed that thought of the list.

we had a couple of people hypothesize on what they felt caused them... one being condensation forming on the tree and dripping down... but i had to throw that off the list as well.

it just didn't make sense.  and when i would walk through the yard and see the holes, i would wonder.  i started thinking it was something alien.  i was clearly grasping at straws here people.

i had of course tried to google it, but came up empty handed.  i was getting images of gopher holes... vole holes....hole holes.

these were inverted cone holes.

then one day, while reading tove jansson's  finn family moomintroll  i learned something new.

i read:
*In case you don't know, an Ant-lion is a crafty insect who digs himself down into the sand
leaving a small round hole above him.  Into this hole unsuspecting little animals fall and then get caught by the Ant-lion, who pops up from the bottom of the hole and devours them.
   You can read all about it in the Encyclopedia if you don't believe me.  Translator

now, upon reading this i looked at my son, and said something along the lines of..."do you think this is real?"  

i mean, it seemed pretty far fetched to me.  and in fact, when searching for ant-lions on ye old google, i felt a wee bit gullible.   

but guess what?!  they are real.  and we have ant-lions living in our yard.  wild huh?  so, next time someone asks what those small holes are in the dirt are from i will state with authority,
"there's lions in them thar' holes".....(ant-lions that is)


Monday, September 22, 2014

from the desert to the ocean

posted by jennifer:

so, i have been a busy little beaver in the craft room the last month or so.... with nothing to show of it as of yet on this here blog.... but i am determined to start sharing again.

i think things are starting to settle slightly on the whole back to school/get more responsible with time management front.  slightly.  

i actually cleaned the kitchen table off today, did the laundry, vacuumed the 1/4" of dust off of the blades of our ceiling fan.... in our room at least. the living room fan will get done someday.   and i didn't go down to my craft room once.  yet.   but my point is, i have been spending too much, and often disjointed, time working on multiple (fun) projects while the house suffers.  

but look what i have to show for it!!!

these beauties  were made from found items collected from the desert to the ocean.  i am a collector you know... i come by it honestly, and i am raising a brood of collectors.  which i think is a good thing.

you can check out the entire collection here.

 the shells, sea glass, barnacles, and sand dollars were found on the beaches of san diego. mostly coronado, because, well, it is our favorite beach.  and there are often sand dollars to be found.  even really small ones.  so cool.

the metal pieces are mostly from the imperial valley desert.   my father-in-law and his wife have a house on the colorado river, which runs through the desert.  most of the year it is too hot to go treasure hunting there, as it often hits triple digits... but at least once each winter, we go out when the weather is cool(ish).  there are rocks and crystals to be found... and thanks to people dumping their trash out in the back country many moons ago, pieces of metal and glass that have weathered perfectly for a girl like me.

here are some pictures from our last winter hunt:

i had a collection of so many bits and pieces that were just begging to be brought back to life.  i spent enough time mulling things over, and came up with these ornaments.  i think they are just lovely. 

 it is amazing that a piece from an old tab top beer can get together with some shells from across the way, and something beautiful comes from it.


most of the additional sparkle comes from my collection of "jewels" that i have collected mostly from estate sales.  just to put a little extra shine on the matter.

and speaking of extra shine... 

behind the scenes of the photo shoot:

lest you think that all is sparkly and beautiful.... trying to keep it real here.  and that's just the deck ;)

well on that note.  


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Au contraire!

Life is filled with contradictions.
Here are some of mine:

I am a pacifist,
but football is my guilty pleasure.

I don't watch "t.v.",
but I'm hooked on tight ends and Downton Abbey.

I'm into healthy food, 
but I eat French fries and potato chips.

I'd do a rain dance for a stormy day,
but I don't like to be cold or damp.

I long for new adventures,
but have been in love with the same man for 50 years.
I've lived in the same house for 44 years.

I'm a realist,
but happily cheer on dreamers.

I'm conventional (read=a bit boring),
but I'm drawn to much that is bohemian.

I think flying is a fantastic way to get somewhere,
but I hate the flight.

I love Scrabble,
but am not a good speller.

I live a simple, (kind of) close-to-nature urban life,
but I shave my armpits and legs on a regular basis.

I guess inconsistencies are a part of every life.
I know they help to keep me from taking myself too seriously.
Ha! Ha!

t.t.f.n. ~ Carol

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Got nausea?

Ever since I was a kid, and that was quite some time ago, I have needed a barf bag in the car during trips.
The first time I got air sick was on a trans-Atlantic flight.  I needed the air-sick bag during that wretched trip.

Feeling nauseated, while packed into an  airplane, practically sitting on someone else's lap, is not a good way to spend time with strangers.
I had used Dramamine for years, but although it helped a wee bit, I still felt sick as soon as the plane's tires lifted off the run way.

Twelve years ago, I was preparing for a trip to Seattle.  My sister was working for a doctor at the time.  I thought, "Oh, I am going to have her ask him for a prescription for a heavy-duty motion sickness pill."  When I asked her about this she said, "Just get yourself some 'Sea Bands'."

I was a skeptic.
How could a couple stretchy wrist bands help?
Still, because my sister has given me helpful guidance many times before, I went to Target and purchased a pair of the acupressure wrist bands.
I remember being in the airport before that first sea band flight, debating with myself as to whether to use both the Dramamine and the bands at the same time.  I really didn't think the bands would work and I HATE feeling nauseated.  
But I thought, if I used the Dramamine and the bands, I wouldn't know if the bands worked, so I didn't take the Dramamine.

Seated in the plane before pushing back from the terminal, I put on the bands as per the instructions.  
The plane taxied, revved... (I wish I would have thought of this word during our Scrabble game last night, as I had two V's on my rack at one point.)... revved its engines and took off.  I waited.  No queasiness.  No feeling green around the gills.  No need for ginger ale, mints, or a bag.

For my next few flights, I used the sea bands with increasing confidence in their effectiveness.  I turned from cynic to convert.  Sea Bands work perfectly.  No more nausea while flying.

Last October I flew to Austin to visit my sister.  I put my sea bands on as usual and settled into a book.  About an hour and a half into the flight, I started turning green.  I was confused, as I had used the bands with complete success repeatedly through the years, both for nausea when flying and for nausea with a bad headache.  I didn't understand why they had suddenly stopped working for me.
When we finally landed, I pushed my sweater sleeves up in order to remove the bands. One of the bands had slipped and the plastic bead, which creates the pressure, was no longer on the Nei Kuan Point between the tendons on my wrist.  Uh huh!  I was so relieved to see the problem was easily corrected.

Before an airplane trip last month, I brought new Sea Bands.  My first pair had lost a lot of their elasticity and that is why they had slipped on my trip to Austin.
I didn't realize how much they had stretched until I put on my new bands.  The new ones are nice and tight.
I'm good to go once again.

If you, or someone you know, adult or child, gets motion sickness, I highly recommend these amazing bands.  They are drug free and work for travel, morning sickness, and for other types of sickness.

Fine print:  The Sea-Band Ltd does not know me.  I have not received any compensation for this recommendation.  The only connection I have with this company is that it is in England and my mother was English.  Sea Bands are made in England.  A lot of good things come out of England.

t.t.f.n. ~ Carol