Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

November 29, 2012

The Curse is Definitely Broken....

Yep.  I do think the 'Birthday Curse' is broken.  Second year in a row I've had a fantastic birthday. Fan-freakin-tastic!!!  I awoke to tons and tons of greetings on Facebook, including this adorable pic of Bill the Fisherman, made by the amazing Eliza.  Bev of Blue Velvet Vincent also made one for me and the other November Vixen birthdays.  

And another of Bill, by Carol Docherty.

It was such a lazy but perfect day.  I got my fave weather for one thing:  Cold and rainy.  I was awakened at 7:30 with a Happy Birthday text from my cousin.  My first thought once I got up was how much I wish I could see my love, but alas, that's life as a trucker's wife.  We exchanged texts and he said some incredibly sweet things with his b-day wishes for me.  Had to do a couple errands in the morning and while I was out, he sent me a text that he was on his way home for a few hours before needing to go back out at night.  Oh my god I GOT MY WISH!  Best. Gift. Ever!!!!!  He was in by 1:30 and surprised me with a card.  It was very unexpected and thoughtful, especially considering he's in a giant truck and can't really shop, plus he works odd hours and when he's awake and driving, it's the middle of the night.  The card itself blew me away; the depth of the feelings in the verses is intense....I know he took his time picking this out.  Every time I read it or think about him going into a store to even buy one & the time it took to pick the right one, I cry and my heart palpitates.  That means more to me than anything.  It still blows my mind and makes me smile to think that all these years later, I am so in love with the 'mean blonde boy' that sat behind me in study hall and yelled at me to quit looking at him if I so much as glanced in his direction.  

Mom & I met for a late lunch/early dinner at the Dan'l Webster Inn, in Sandwich Village.  I used to work there in housekeeping when I was in college.  It used to be one of the town's biggest employers back in the day.  The original Inn from the 1600s burned down in 1971 and was rebuilt in 1973. Some of the tourists think it's still the old Inn.  It used to be called Fessenden's Tavern and was where the patriots would meet when planning how to extricate the colony from British rule, in the 1700s.  Statesman Daniel Webster was a frequent and famous guest, hence the name change.  The DW is all decked out for Christmas and very elegant inside.

Grey & rainy November day.  That used to be a church but was a Doll Museum when I was little and growing up but is now a B&B.

Cozy waiting area inside.

House phone.

In the gift shop.

We ate inside the Tavern part of the restaurant (there are several different rooms), which was also decorated.

This is outside, I'm still not sure what it's supposed to be unless it's Daniel Webster.  When I return to Sandwich to shoot the lights this year, I'll be sure to ask.

After I got home, I spent some quality time with Russell before he headed out on the road again.  It was so great to see him.  I keep reading his card to me over and over.  

Meanwhile, a few days prior to my birthday, I started surfing the internet looking for an old Christmas village that my parents had when I was little.  They are known as Putz houses.  I remember so clearly going with them to buy it.  I was in kindergarten so it would have been December of 1969, and we got it from the old Zayre's store on Main Street in Hyannis.  I loved that village and looked forward to putting it out each year.  When I moved to California, my mom sent me all my decorations and ornaments.  I asked about the village and she said she forgot to send it but would.  She searched high and low and couldn't find it.  For years she and my dad tore that place apart, looking.  I told her the last time I saw it, it was in the closet out in the Coop.  They'd searched every nook and cranny out there, they searched the shed and even the barn, to no avail.  My dad swears he didn't get rid of it, so the only conclusion we came to was that it was stolen.  A lot of things have gone missing from the out buildings on their property over the years before they finally started locking the doors, especially from the shed which abuts the woods.  

Imagine my utter delight to see the EXACT set come up on ebay!!!  When I first spotted it, the auction had days left and there were quite a few bids.  I showed it to Russell before he left and told him I was getting ready to snipe once there were about 45 seconds left.  He told me to put in a bid of $100, just to be safe, because he loves those villages too.  The bidding was at $45.  After he left, I went back to my heart racing as the minutes and seconds counted down.  5 minutes.  3.  2. 1 minute 30 seconds.  The bids were increasing by $1.  Then at 45 seconds, I swooped in with my $100 bid.  Just to be safe, I did an immediate increase to $115.  Those final 30 seconds took a LIFETIME.  I watched the bids start flying upwards but alas.....5, 4, 3, 2, 1.....'CONGRATULATIONS! YOU WON THE AUCTION'  The final amount was $103.  Here is the set.  There are about 7 extra houses that weren't a part of my parents' set of 8 or 10, but other than that, this is exactly what I grew up with.  A couple of windows needs some minor repairs but I can easily find the red clear plastic for them.  All I need now is a small set of lights to place in the holes in the back so that they light up.

All in all it was an awesome birthday.  I love my life, my friends, family, doggies, and most of all, I love my man.  Life is GREAT! 

November 27, 2012

Holiday Weekend Round Up

What a fab Thanksgiving weekend!  I was somewhat under the weather earlier in the week but luckily it never got full blown.  

We went to see my mom on Thanksgiving around noon for about an hour, before heading over to my future sister-in-law's for dinner with their immediate family.  It was a great afternoon and I am really happy to be a part of his family.  His niece brought their dog down from Maine.  His name is Captain and he really took a liking to Russell.  He jumped around, wanting to play as soon as we walked in. As you can see, he's huge.   I was sitting on this loveseat when Captain came over, pushed himself between us and climbed on us both, then hip checked me so hard I had no choice but to get up, where he then took my space with a look of satisfaction.  lol  

We ate early - around 2 - and we hung out for a bit afterwards, getting home at 3:30.  On Friday, we did our errands in Sandwich in mid-morning, then came home and cooked up a turkey breast and all the fixin's because we didn't have any of course, having eaten at Grace's (except for the ham she sent us home with).  It was a perfect day together.  ;-)  The weather was gorgeous too - cool, clear and crisp with a waxing moon.

Saturday was a bit colder.  I walked downtown to check out a couple junk shops because I needed something for a craft I am hoping to do soon, found what I needed, then walked home and made a few more sparkly shells....

...and then I knocked together these styrofoam balls using sequins, beads and ribbon from some Christmas ball kits I made in the late 90s.

Here are all the shells with hangers attached, in the presentation I plan to have at the 12/1 craft fair in Hyannis.  I'm still on the fence about using the dried beans. 

More fun with paint chips & sequins.  I've seen the candy canes used as a garland, by punching holes in the top and threading ribbon through them.

I guess it's time for me to break out the Christmas decorations and see what I can come up with now that we have 'Destructo Dawg' and the furniture has been rearranged a bit since last year. Sunday was really cold and I had to go into Sandwich in the morning, so when I got home I wasn't much in the mood for hauling all that stuff out, so I'll work on it this week.  My neighbours have already decorated, as has downtown BBay and Sandwich.  Still not sure about doing cards.  I haven't made any because the list of 'Handmade Cardworthy People' got way, way too long.  It takes a lot of time to make 30+ cards.  It was more manageable a few years ago at 15'ish.  I usually buy cards on sale after the holidays, but I really don't recall having done so last January which means paying ridiculous prices for poor quality cards that get thrown out.  Not to mention the cost of postage.  I guess I should make up my mind about that soon.  

My b-day is today, actually.  Hard to believe I'm 'twenty-twenty eight'.  Won't be celebrating it till the weekend when my squeeze is home, and I haven't decided what I want to do yet other than lunch or early dinner at 99.  I'd like for us to get our ornament somewhere, and the Glass Museum is having their annual Glassblower's Christmas event.  Heritage Plantation is doing their annual 'Gardens Aglow' and then there's Edaville Railroad in Carver with their lights display, although that could be a mob scene of families.  LaSallette Shrine in Attleboro does a colourful display but it's all Catholic-themed, so light on the Santa-thing and heavy on the Nativity-thing.  Then there's the lit lobster trap up in Provincetown which would be nice to see, but I'm just not enthused about the drive back in the dark, on suicide alley.  It's dangerous enough during the day.  It's supposed to be wicked cold so I'll have to see if I feel like being outside in it.  Whatever we do, I'm sure it'll be special and memorable.  In any event I'll have to be home early because I have to be in Hyannis by 7:00 a.m. on Saturday for the craft fair!

Wish me luck! 

November 25, 2012


Several weeks ago, Maureen over at I'd Rather Be Blogging and Victorian Studio took us on a really cool tour of her new Victorian studio where she creates her beautiful crafts and cards.  It's wonderfully organized with great furniture pieces, and not near as dusty as mine!!  Sadly, I'm not quite as organized as she is, as I am still digging through boxes which remain not quite unpacked.  I have more room to stack the boxes than I do for the items inside, but that's OK because I have a fairly good idea where things are kept.  

When we moved to this house, I got my very own Craft Room for the first time.  Back in WA I had 'Kraft Korner' in the family room, but never my own studio.  It's been kind of a mess for the past 10 or so months, so I finally spent some time straightening up as much as I could.  I love to surround myself with hand made items made by friends or artists.  Everything in here has tons of significance to me.  Would you like a tour?

Puppies following me in the doorway.

I just got those sparkly aqua and purple curtains at The Christmas Tree Shop in Sagamore.  Only $5.99 each! I should've gotten the longer ones but originally I was gonna use them in windows then decided to cover up the closet and shelves.  They're a little short but looks better than the boxes.

Some of my Canadian license plates collection.  The Fairfax thing was a tshirt, made by an artist in Marin County, CA. I used to live in Fairfax.  2 cross stitch projects under it and that sparkly card I made earlier in the year.

Shells & rocks, Golden Gate Bridge cross stitch.  Paper camera that I built on the left.  That groovy looking train case on the right contains my childhood marbles.  4 Whizzer tops that were popular when I was a kid. And they are all sitting on a footlocker which is filled with more memorabilia from my high school and college years.

The rainbow glass windchimes in the corner were purchased at the Maiden Lane Craft Show in San Francisco almost 20 years ago.  Beaded cards on the wall by a Vancouver Island First Nations artist.

Pictures of my maternal grandparents.  A Sandwich High Blue Knights glass I've had since about Jr. High.  I bought the painted sand dollar from some children in Cannon Beach, OR who had set up a table and were selling their painted rocks and sand dollars.  Small beaded purses purchased in Canada and Puyallup.

Pacific Northwest Native art of Mt. Rainier, called 'Takhoma: Spirit Home'.  The 5 pics on the line were made and given to me by my dear friend Angie.  Beaded amulet bags were made and given to me by my bff/sister Michelle.  More beaded cards from Vancouver Island.  Pic of my dad & Uncle Dick taken in the 1940s.

More beaded bags purchased in Canada and Puyallup.  Rainbow candles from Victoria BC.  Flags of BC, Canada, CA and WA.  More rocks.

I looooove the Polar Bear plates.  The 2 sticks on the left contain the glass beads I made at The Bead Factory and the large clam shell holds the marbles I made there too.  The ex-h gave me the center, sea-themed glass paperweight one year, and I bought the Saturn one on the bottom left is from Glass Eye Studios in Seattle.  Tiny beaded purse...not sure if I got that in Canada or WA.

Beaded peacock shawl on a small chair.  Glass table with a Celtic design that the ex gave me years ago.  The blue bottle I got this summer.  Also a marble solitaire game I bought in Port Angeles, WA prior to departing for my trip to Victoria in 2007.  My dear friend Cathy gave me the glass plaque for 'Someone Special'.

Got the tie dye at a Dead show.  Peter Max poster I got off ebay.  My friend Debby gave me the beaded purse.

Mostly marbles, a couple glass floats and glass ornaments.  Plus craft books and my colouring book stuff on the bottom shelf.

Marbles, bottles, feathers and other bits of glass and rocks and stuff.

My former bosses went to Africa in 1995 and brought me back that authentic beaded Masai collar.  More license plates (the WA one was from my car).  Crayon & button art I did this year.  That's a photo of the ornament I made and submitted to a contest in Tacoma.  The picture ran in the paper and I was able to order one from the photographer.  

When I left my job at Gillin, Jacobson, Ellis & Larsen to move to Washington, they gave me that Grateful Dead poster as a going away gift.  The senior partner, Andy Gillin, is also a Deadhead.  

Cigar boxes full of  rocks & shells from beach combing adventures in Canada and Washington.  More marbles.

Wizard of Oz music box, more bottles, marbles, shells, sweetgrass, blue glass float....

San Francisco music box on the left.

This is a heart shaped shelf I found at Salvation Army in Sumner, WA and which I repainted then decoupaged.  Large amethyst tea light geode and ornament from Glass Eye Studios of Seattle.  My little iron cauldron on the 2nd shelf and red glass vase on the bottom shelf.

That was my old license plate when I lived in MA the first time.  "Cassidy" is a Dead song and Neal Cassady drove Ken Kesey's psychedelic bus, Furthur, in the mid 60s.  Neal was also the Dean Moriarty character in Jack Kerouac's On the Road.  My bff/sister Michelle made the mobile.  The Laughter, Love & Music poster is from the free concert in Golden Gate Park held after concert promoter Bill Graham was killed in a helicopter crash in October, 1991.  It was the most amazing day and I was privileged to have attended.  I got the smaller Dead poster at Experience Music Project in Seattle right before I moved.  All the amulet bags are made by artists in CA, except for the white one on the left that was made by a woman in Victoria, BC, and the white one on the right that I also bought in Victoria (I made the one on the top left next to the LLM poster).

Cable car whiskey decanter (that clearly needs dusting).  My dad was a Nixon supporter and my cousins gave him that candle.  Whale candle, Pierrot doll, leather tipi that I've had since I was little.

More bits of pop culture.

Kitsch, pop culture items, my old Dawn and Triki Miki dolls.

Even more pop culture things and a Cape Cod thing I made years ago from a kit.

Can you tell I like to collect pop culture stuff?

Mask made by a woman I worked with at Channel 56 in the 80s.  Mystery Science Theatre 3000 lunchbox and a dancing Spiro Agnew music box that was also my dad's.

The few books that are unpacked, plus photo albums from trips to Canada.