Monday, January 26, 2009

January Organizing

I cleaned out my back bedroom closet a week or so ago.
I have always used part of the closet to store dress-up items for my nieces and nephews to play with when they come visiting. But it's often been crowded and messy. This time I kept almost the entire back rail of the closet for the costumes, and added a shoe rack and a bin for accessories (things like gloves and necklaces and scarves and hats and the Egyptian belly dancer's scarf and cap I let a street vendor in Luxor talk me into buying for ten bucks last fall and the silk parasol my sister in law gave me from Thailand.) Yes, that's my wedding veil hanging there (honestly I'm never going to wear that again) and also some old formal dresses from the 80s as well as my master's degree robes and my old Dracula cape and various things like the knit prisoner stripe suit and my old 80s denim jean jacket, plus the pioneer dress and the pseudo-medieval dress and the old Tae-Kwon-Do uniform and a really marvelously hideous old velvet plush houserobe that reminds me EXACTLY of Ron Weasley's dress robes...
Kids, come visit soon!

I also reorganized my vanity cabinet,
which for me is actually a giant scarf-and-jewelry cabinet.

The cheap $5 plastic nuts & bolts boxes that are sold at home improvement stores work just great as jewelry holders, because you can put the dividers in anywhere you want to make large or small compartments. I just take off the tops and store them elsewhere because otherwise they clutter the drawer. I also made a very primitive cloth-covered cardboard 'pin board' to pin my more delicate necklaces on, as you can see below. I am hoping that some day when I get around to more crafty things I will make a better one with thicker padding (quilt batting would be good) and smaller peg/pins that will be more elegant and stable, but for now this does the job. I wouldn't want to count on its sturdiness if there was anyone under 18 within 3 feet of it, though.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Winter Frost

I do enjoy tinkering with photoshop.
Not sure which mood I like better...

Sunday Dinner

When I was a kid, a nice sit down meal was a given for Sundays.
(And for most other days of the week, too...
how DID you do it, Mom??)
On Sundays we almost always used our nice china.
This very china!
I have it now, and mostly it sits decoratively in a corner cabinet,
but it's nice to get it out every once in awhile.
On Sunday my sister came over for dinner.
I made a roast and mashed potatoes and squash and peas.
And we had a lovely meal.
It's very pleasing to do that every once in awhile.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Whimsical Things

Why not make a touch of whimsy to brighten up the day?

Friday, January 9, 2009

Winter Night Adventure with the OAC

On Thursday night I went to Meadow Hot Springs with the OAC.
It's a rather long drive from Provo, and we don't usually go so far on a week night,
but this was our opening event of the semester.
And the weather looked good (we thought).
Our drive down was completely clear,
and the hot springs were great,
and we had a fire,
and everyone had a great time.
There were about 20 of us all together.
We left about 10:30 pm, quickly toweling off in the cold night:

As we exited the parking lot, snow began to fall. And fall.
By the time we'd gone 10 miles on the interstate,
the snow was coming straight at the windshield,
and with the headlights the snow looked like the white streaks
that appear in the screen of the Millenium Falcon before it makes its jumps to hyperdrive.
We had to go very slow and at times we couldn't see the road,
just the reflecting posts on either side,
and I had no idea where the lanes were,
so I just drove in the dead center.
I was very grateful for my new tires!
Eventually the snow tapered off,
and by Nephi the roads were much better.
Though we didn't get back to Provo until 1 am,
I was grateful that all of our group made it back safe and sound.

Quite a Handful

She grows slowly, but I've had her almost seven years now,
and she's 37" long and about 890 grams.
And she's much bigger than my hand.
In fact she fits a lot better draped over my shoulders.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Prodigal Returns

I was lonely for a pet, and sad
when I looked at Mortimer's empty cage.
So last Saturday I went to the pet store
and bought a cute little hatchling ball python.
Isn't she cute- so small, and curled up compactly in my hand!
I fixed up the cage for her, and let her get acquainted with it,
then lifted her out and tried to get her acquainted with me.
We were well on our way to bonding- she was a nice little thing.
Then, late Saturday night, I went to put her back in her cage,
and this is what I found...

He looked up at me as if to say,
"Mom, how could you move someone else in!!"
So I popped the lid over him and locked it
(this picture was taken after that)
and turned on the heat lamp,
and put the little hatchling in my spare cage,
after rigging it up quick for comfort and security,
and then went and lifted Mortimer out to check for injury.
He seemed okay, but he was very cold and rigid.
So I ran a lukewarm bath and put him in it.
He did not like that at all. He slithered right out.
And so I held him close to me so that my body heat would warm him,
and so that he would get used to me again,
but in a minute or two he began to vomit.
(I've never seen a snake do that- Mortimer never did it before.)
I rinsed him off, patted him dry, put him in his cage, cleaned up with antibacterial spray and rags, and made sure his heat lamp and a humidifier were both working.
Then I left him alone all weekend long to recover.
Well, I tried to call a vet.
But no reptile vets were available in the animal ERs on a Sunday.
So I had to take him first thing Monday- through a nasty snow squall and horrible traffic, but we got there.
The vet said that Mortimer was a bit dehydrated and constipated and had been stressed by the adventure but seemed to be doing okay now, and in fact was pretty healthy for the most part.
But she had a surprise for me.
Mortimer is actually Lady Mortimer.
That sneaky snake!
He was a she, all this time.
It's hard to tell with snakes unless you're an expert (and have the tools and know how to safely probe).
I'm trying to think if I should change her name,
but meanwhile she's Lady Mortimer.
(Or Little Sister for affectionate short)

Oh, and I took the hatchling back to the pet store.
I am strictly a one-pet type of person.
I hope she finds a good home, though.

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Cat with the Diamond Eyes

You may be wondering:
What IS this thing??

It is the Achievement of a Childhood Dream.

When I was a kid, my older sister was given a perfume bottle container in the shape of a cat under a plastic dome.
She christened it "The Cat with the Diamond Eyes".
It belonged to her, but oh, how I wanted it, how I admired it,
how I longed for it to be MINE.
She knew this well, and she used the Cat mercilessly as a carrot
to get me to do things for her.
Just to SEE the Cat was a wonderful treat.
"If you let me color in your coloring book, you can hold
the Cat with the Diamond Eyes."
"If you go away while my friends are over,
you can have the Cat with the Diamond Eyes for an hour."
And so on.
For years I was in the Cat's (and my sister's) thrall.
Eventually I inherited the Cat.
And now it's all mine, every dusty speck of tacky fake velvet.
Normally it lives in a box in the back bedroom closet,
but when I was cleaning, I found it again.
I have to admit, I feel a small glow of satisfaction as I look at it.
I mean, when I was a kid,
I wanted to be a princess, a ballerina, to own the Hope Diamond, and the Cat with the Diamond Eyes.
Well, at least one of those dreams has come true!!
How many people can say as much?