Thursday, April 29, 2010

About art and a bug question!

I was bemoaning the fact that I hadn't done any new collages since I'd been home from L.A. so I sat down and cut out some new scraps to use. That always gets me thinking about what to do next. I do have one piece in the works. It's for a mail art call that's not due until the summer. The image here will be replicated and each copy with be worked on to make it unique. I'm excited to do this, now that I have some new scraps to work with.
SO, here's the bug or insect. I discovered it living on one of my African violets. It doesn't jump or crawl when I get near it. It wiggles it's antennae a bit. What is it? Is it dangerous for my plants, like will it suck the life out of them? I have no idea where it came from nor have I ever seen a thing like it before. If it can live on the plants okay, then I'll leave it. Or I can capture it and release it into the wild. Any ideas. You all are so helpful with things like this. For instance, I now know I have a "daphne" bush out in the front garden. I look forward to finding out about my new resident plant sitter.

Monday, April 26, 2010

My pup and some nature.

My old dog was so tired out by his visit to the vet that he just lay down on the kitchen floor and went to sleep. He's on an antibiotic now and some blood work is being done just to get a picture of what's going on for him. Notice how nice he looks? We have this really nice groomer who arrives at our door in her van. Smitty is really nervous about being groomed but Serena of Serene Grooming, is great with him. Even an old dog likes to look nice.
Chuck found the birds nest on the window ledge by our air-conditioner. It was abandoned by the dove. It's so loosely built but amazing how the tiny egg sits in the twigs. The tulips are in front of a house on the next block.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Leaving Los Angeles

I left Los Angeles on Saturday morning. I was able to get a nice photo of the iconic central structure at LAX. Waiting at the gate, I spoke with a family heading back to Switzerland. They didn't know what was going to happen after they got to Chicago. There were no flights to Lucerne, because of the volcanic ash. I hope they got to stay over and see a bit of Lake Michigan. The plane took off headed west over the Pacific Ocean coastline and steeply banking, headed east for Chicago, where I'd be connecting to another flight. The pix are out of sequence but you get the idea. I looked down at the city, said so-long until next time, feeling lucky to have a window seat. I looked down on the desert and then on high mountains with snow on top, then flat lands, then the wide Mississippi River and into Illinois, where the fields are so straight, where I was so surprised to see the interesting curving rows of plantings. It was like looking at a fabulous intaglio print or a drawing. At O'Hare airport, I saw a Brioche Doree "cafe," a bit of Paris in the heartland. I had an aisle seat on the next flight, and it got dark quickly as we headed east, so no sights to see as we crossed the Appalachian mountains. No kidding, I was thinking: This is a HUGE country! I arrived at my home airport, my honey was waiting for me, and, even though it was 10 at night for him, it was dinner time for me so we went out to eat. I'm home! A bit of jet lag to contend with, but so it goes.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Mom and an interview.

This is my last day to be with Mom on this trip. I begin my return voyage to the east coast tomorrow morning. Mom is multi-tasking in this photo. She's reading and has her latest knitting project in her lap, and she goes from one to the other.
In a short while, I'll be called on the phone to do an interview with the publisher of the book, Shifting Sands, for which I did the cover collage. See more about the publisher and the book here. and here. Mom said that she'd sit quietly while I'm being interviewed. When she's not re-telling a life event, or reading to me from whatever she's reading, she's very quiet. No worries in that department. You can hear my interview here by scrolling down past the Ursula LeGuin post.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Mom knits!

This is the third day I've been with Mom in Los Angeles. We can't go anywhere because it's too cold out for Mom, so we've been keeping ourselves entertained. I've written letters, made some tiny collages, read, and done the Mom things that I came to do. My sister and I have been enjoying our time together, too. Laughing about things AND coming up with a scheme. Mom knits and knits and knits. As my regular “blog” readers know that Mom is 96! We can’t keep the yarn coming fast enough. She has gifted all family members with scarves, so, my sister and I are thinking that maybe some of you would like to purchase one of Mom’s scarves, and help her keep up her supply of yarn. There are about 40 right now in her stock. They are different widths and lengths. Some are flat, some roll, some have interesting “patterns” in them. They are mostly Acrylic, although, maybe some wool & acrylic blends got in her mix. We have no idea. They all feel nice, not scratchy. So, is this like a goofy idea? If you would like a scarf made by a really cool 96 year old, here's what to do.

You can pay through PayPal. $12 would include shipping and handling, within the U.S. and Canada. You can ask for a lighter or darker color and we’ll do the best to send you one you’d like. Use my e-mail under “My Profile.”
My niece, Phoebe, just took this photo of Mom knitting. She thought it would be nice for you to see Mom working. Look how intent she is!

Spring Clearance!

Check out my Etsy shop here! We're having a spring clearance sale of our knitwear. 15% off on all items, plus free shipping on orders over $25. Not many items left so stock up now for next cold weather time. Though I must add that it's actually quite chilly here in Southern California at the moment and I'm wearing one of mom's scarves (in the HOUSE!) Mom is continuing to knit scarves, endlessly, we have bags of them! Did I mention that mom was 96?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Walk to the Park.

A new day in Los Angeles, but too chilly to take mom for a walk, so we are indoors keeping ourselves busy. Here are a few images from a week ago today. We went on a long walk with the family. We passed fountain lake in Byrd Park, and continued on to Maymont Park, which was filled with families. We didn't know that it was an activity day there. The weather was perfect for being outdoors. There was an artist working on a painting of the little lake.

This is Fountain Lake, where there are paddle boats in the summer.
The tulips were in the front garden of a house that faced Shields Lake,

Los Angeles

I'm back in Los Angeles to visit my Mom, again. I started out in my home town with a flight due out at 2h44 in the afternoon. Due to bad storms in Atlanta, my flight didn't leave until 4h15 so I missed my connection to Los Angeles. I did get rebooked on a later flight, with no problem, and happily had packed myself some food, and had a couple of books to read and people to chat with who were in the same situation. Here's my view of waiting in the Atlanta airport.

The thing is, I ended up arriving in Los Angeles very late. It was 11 p.m.! Here's a dark view of the futuristic thingy in the middle of LAX (Los Angeles airport.) I'm on a bus going into the San Fernando Valley. By the time my sister picked me up, it was midnight and I was hungry. It was 3 a.m. my time. aaaagh. We went to an all night place and had breakfast. I didn't get to sleep until 3 a.m.

My first full day here, yesterday, went by quickly, with my jet lag hardly noticable except for the occasional light-headed-ness. I crashed into bed after finally helping Mom to get into her bed. The baby monitor is set up next to me, the tick tock of her clock coming through it stopped being annoying and I managed to get 5 and a half hours of sleep before awaking, disoriented, thinking I was at home, in my own bed. A new day begins. It'll be sunny and hopefully, we'll go out doors for a walk.

Easter Sunday

Last Sunday, we went to our Easter Parade on Monument Avenue. It's an annual promenade. There were people and animals with fancy hats, entertainment, and food. All people do is walk down one side of the street and up the other side for several blocks. It was extremely HOT this year and crowded.

We especially loved the men in their fabulous hats. Also, the irony of the band of black musicians played on the green area beneath the Robert E. Lee statue (American Civil War, southern general, for those of you who are in other countries.)
After dinner, the weather became cooler and someone suggested that we go play miniature gold, so we did. It was so much fun. We laughed, hooted and hollered, encouraged each other, took pictures, and had a terrific time. I came in last, oh well. Can't wait to do this again.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Some more spring and more.

Here are some cell phone photos of flowers, the daffodils around the corner, the Iris in my alley, the azalea in my back garden...the flowers are flowering! The trees are leafing and are depositing a green dusting on everything, as is their way during spring. We come back from walking and feel like WE're covered in green dust.
the two pups in the door way were watching us the other night as we were leaving a restuarant, getting into our car. They were so puffy cute.
I've included the empty space because it's so odd for me to see this. In all the years I've lived here, there's been a huge bus "barn" filled with all the city buses. They've moved out to a new location and left these big empty buildings. So odd to see this. We don't know what will be built there, we're hoping for an urban Target (small department type store like MonoPrix in France)but probably it'll be condos! Oh well. NO one asked my opinion. I'm off to Los Angeles, again, to give my sister a brief break from Mom caregiving. More L.A. images to come.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Gran diccionario

My big dictionary arrived yesterday, but I didn't see the package outside in my entry way until this morning. SO EXCITING. It's gigante! I won't be carrying mi gran diccionario to Meet-up or class. It's almost 3" thick (7.5) and is 10.75" (26.5cm) x 7.74" (19.5 cm) in size.
At Spanish Meet-Up this morning, we had a participant with a large dictionary and a very tiny one. See the wee book on top of the bigger book?
We had such a good time comparing the two.