A place for family and friends to see what I'm up to. Visitors welcome here.

Hail Guest, we ask not what thou art.
If Friend, we greet thee, hand and heart.
If Stranger, such no longer be.
If Foe, our love will conquer thee.
-Old Welsh Door Verse

Monday, May 30, 2016

Shut. Up.

Seriously, no gripes about this weekend and I would LOVE to see it carry on through the week.


Relaxed and goal-less, dragon-less, sweat-less and fear-less.

In fact, I don't think I've been this lazy in years.

Well, maybe that's an exaggeration.   Hmmm...

No.  No, it has been years.

And I wasn't totally lazy.  Just - I dunno - absorbed in what I chose to do.  So much that I couldn't be distracted by the mundane.

Several years ago my printer died and I bought an Epson.  The one that had died was an Epson and had been a good printer.  Until it died.  So I went with the brand again.  It was decent for black-and-white stuff.  But color?


I take pictures.  Lots of pictures.  When I want prints or enlargements, I shoot them over to Costco's awesome color laser system (costs less than ink and paper here) and pick them up on my next shopping trip.  Easy and cheap and great quality.

But I like to do other stuff with my pictures, and this Epson couldn't even make decent prints, much less do anything fun.  So, right around Christmas QVC had a sale on a Canon color printer.  I remembered my daughter-in-law advising me to always buy a camera from a company known for its quality lenses, and I assumed the same advice would serve for deciding on this printer.  Canon makes good lenses and would not want its name on a printer that would make pictures taken with those lenses look bad.  Under a hundred bucks.  WIFI.  I still prefer to take pictures with my Nikon Coolpix instead of the phone, but with this WIFI printer I could print pictures off my phone.  Or tablet.  Or even the camera, as it has a dock for the memory card.

So I bought it.  And it sat in a box in the studio for six months.  Until this past Friday.

It was a little tricky, but I managed to get it set up.  My desktop is in The Sanctuary (my pretty little bedroom), but now it can converse with the printer that is living in a white wicker cabinet in the studio.

Best. Pictures. Ever.

The inspiration to finally dig it out and get it working was this.

(Cue herald trumpets and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, please.)

 It's an Erin Condren Planner.

I love it.  I've tried lots of planners and even tried to use my phone to keep track of my life, but this is the first that actually works for me.  After a neutral life, I crave color and this thing is full of it.  I love the three divisions (which I use as morning, afternoon and evening) because I can shorthand my lesson plans in the top tier, essential when I need to make an appointment that would take me out of class.  And I need the kinesthetic boost from dragging a pencil across the nap of the paper to help things get organized in this overactive head of mine.

But that's not the best.

I learned about this thing from a friend in Juneau.  (After she turned me onto Sue Coccia quilt fabric - ka-ching.)   Once it was delivered (so cute - fancy box holding my order wrapped in mauvetissue paper with a seal that said "Enjoy!") I wrote to her and said, "OK, it's here.  Now what do I do?"  Her response was to go to etsy and go broke on decor.

I had not known this.  This is the new art craft.  People spend quality time (and bucks) dressing these things up.  Like these:


Don't get me wrong.  I think these are wonderful and could easily see myself spending hours (and lots of $$$$$$) doing this.  I've got the thousands of dollars worth of scrapbooks to prove that I'm not immune.  But I will be strong.  I have too many things to enjoy to spend this much time (or $$$$$$) decorating my planner.


Some of these artists publish free "printables," so on Friday - to test my new printer, of course - I downloaded one (or two or three or ten) and printed them off.

Oh, so perfect.

I was up until 2:00.  AM.

Then my mom drove over to spend a couple of days with me.  She sat in the studio recliner and knit me a gorgeous black and red cowl collar (for when I go out on the boat in the Channel to find whales or dolphins or just for restoration) and I sat and printed up stuff.  After a few hours of printable fun (which I then had to figure out how to store) it dawned on me that with this new printer I could adjust the settings and print out my own pictures - as well as those I find and love on the internet - and stick them into this book.

And that archivist soul of mine couldn't stand it.  I had to print print print photos and create tiny copies to plug into this planner, which is now not only my working planner but a memory keeper as well.

The three little pictures are from my morning garden inspection.  It will be fun to compare them to the ones I take at the end of summer.

I haven't spent so much time so totally involved in anything since ever.  All day Saturday and all day Sunday.  I promised myself that I would do chores today (Memorial Day holiday Monday) but it is now 4:00 PM and I haven't done squat.

Oh, well, it's not THAT bad.  I got my laundry washed Saturday morning (not folded but it's dry) and baked a couple of loaves of sourdough bread (after two weeks of feeding Audrey III the Starter every day this was only mediocre).  I watered my potted plants and took a few minutes to enjoy walking the Sunset Garden outside the studio. 

Water lily 'Mayla' purchased a few months ago and planted in a too-shallow pot.  Almost lost her. Had to go buy this large pot for her and she is much happier (four new leaves this week).  She is destined for the pond after this summer's serious restoration project.

Brugmansia 'Charles Grimaldi' doing what brugs do.  Growing like a monster, blooming like crazy and smelling divine.  He'll be over my head by the end of summer.

One of five 'Disneyland' roses, three in this space, happily blooming.  Eight more days of school and then I can get out here and clean and re-arrange so that this is the beautiful sunset-color garden I envisioned.  The plants are doing their parts beautifully.

But other than that.  Nada.  Just two quiet women doing something we love - working with our hands - for two days.  Mom left yesterday in time to beat the sunset.  I had a new idea this morning (like a dummy) so haven't completed any of the chores I had promised myself I would take care of.

Guess I'd best get to them.  Going to be a busy week.  Eighth grade winding down to promotion so special presentations, yearbooks, awards, Magic Mountain on Friday.  I'm chaperoning that, then turning around and taking Mom for her monthly visit to Disneyland on Saturday.  After the weekend is the last week of school for me.

I have big plans to get a lot done this summer.  As always.  And Jury duty starting the 27th.  Keep a good thought that they don't need me, please.  I really want to get my garden groomed, my studio cleaned and at least two projects completed.

My birthday week starts with a solo trip to Disneyland on the 18th and maybe a stop at the Sunland Water Nursery for another plant (if I can afford it) on the way home.  For sure taking an Azure Seas whale watch trip on my actual birthday (the 22nd) with a side trip to Roxanne's Make A Wish quilt shop in Carpenteria for some of her original mermaid fabric.  Again, I have to see what the budget will allow but it's a milestone birthday and I want to celebrate myself.

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