Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rage, rage against the dying of the light*.

Sunset before 4:30 gets a little depressing.
Today, in my corner of the map, the sun will not set until after 5.
I like that.
Yesterday was sunny and almost 50 degrees. YAY!
We've actually had a couple days this month that made it over the 50 degree mark.
Red Molly and I are watching.

Now that Mr. Logo is back to the whole working for a living thing (YAY!) life is starting to reorient to something vaguely resembling a routine.
It's a bit of a challenge though. Most mornings what I'd most like to do is stay in bed,
only until about....say, 10:30. Then I would stay up till 2 AM so it all evens out in the end.
Instead, I do get up and get school going for the Things. We are members of a cooperative that meets once a week. In our last term (Sept. - Nov.) there was a current events class that coincided with the election.
My children were revealed as the local raving liberals of the homeschool set and
they are now being held personally responsible for the current administration by their schoolmates. That has served to spur them to greater interest in matters political. I approve.
I didn't even have to force them to watch the Inaugaral Address (even though I'd just made them watch the entire I Have a Dream speech on MLK day).
That man is, as the very Republican EES (Esteemed Elder Sister observed), a silver tongued devil. She even teared up a little.

Anyway, there is a job, and there is daylight, and for now, that is enough.

*Yah, yah, I know this is NOT what the poem is about. It was just the first title-ish sounding phrase that popped into my head.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Can I Interest You in Direct Sales (Also titled, Hey You, Wouldn't You Like to Help Me Earn a Trip to Maui or a Pink Cadillac?)

Direct sales companies ( Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, Avon, Tupperware, et al.) account for about $30 billion of the USA's retail dollars. That is pretty impressive.

About 90% of the people involved in direct sales are women. So while it may be fun and easy to mock Mary Kay (oh, and it is!) it could be posited that she is/was (is she still alive??) an empowerer of women and a force for good in the universe. All I know for sure, is one of her pink minions can be blamed for my interest in make up. When I turned 13 my mom's friend, a Mary Kay lady, gave me a skin care set and a make over.

I understand that right about here anyone with a Y chromosome is just about done. If so, skip to the end. 'Course, if you happen to have a woman in your life, especially a future makeup wearer, you may want to sludge through.

The science of make up is more interesting to me than the dictates of fashion. I find it fascinating that with a little lightener here and a contrast there, voila, your nose looks smaller, your eyes appear even, and you can even make those dark rings under your eyes disappear.

As an extrodinarily pale person the realities of typical teenage skin problems are somewhat magnified. When your skin tone is only three shades off college ruled school paper and a bright red zit erupts just above your eyebrow, in addition to the always gorgeous third eye effect, you also have the added bonus of it contrasting like a bull's eye on a stark white wall. Make up can be a wonderful thing.

Now, I am not a Mary Kay user myself, but really, I don't think brand matters that much. There are going to be some obvious differences in make up, Wet N' Wild is probably not going to rival NARS in quality but as long as you have sanded and primed a mid-grade paint will suffice.

The important thing, as any painter will confirm, is you MUST not use cheap brushes!

I decided to wash my make up brushes out the other day and I realized a have a fair few of them.

That is my whole collection lying flat to dry. Technically, brushes should be stored flat to help them retain their shape, but whatever...

As I was washing them I was trying to decide if I really needed all of them, and I decided I really did.

These are the eye shadow brushes. I could probably get away with three, but it's handy to have a fourth one for blending, so I decided to keep them all.

This is a lipstick brush, essential for getting the last of that perfect shade of lipstick of the last remains of a chunk of Chapstick out of the tube.

That other one, oh may the angels sing of the day I was introduced to the angled eyeliner brush. This is GENIUS!

These are for applying creme based make up. Now I know some people may claim finger blending works just fine for them, which is, of course, their right. The sad reality for those of us without perfectly smooth skin is that finger application tends to leave too little over ridges and too much elsewhere. Brushes don't do that.

This is our "Why bother?" catagory. These brushes are all in the trash now. I mean seriously, if you can't even HOLD the brush? What is the point?

Now, this is a rabbit trail, but speaking of the importance of application? Sharp pencils are SOOOOO much better. OK, now back to the point.

This brush (cue the cheesy background music and lower the lights), how I adore this brush. It is a combination of synthetic and natural fibers. It is one of the few make up brushes that would not be available cheaper at a craft or paint store.

So there is the whole shebang, clean and ready to go again.


Here is a shelf Mr. Logo made for my bathroom wall. Remember this? Well, he is hoping this is going to advance the realization of his orderly vision of the world.

Wish him luck!

He built the shelf and I painted it. With this, a Purdy 2 inch.

Good brushes are important!

Monday, January 19, 2009

It's Martin Luther King, Jr.

Today is inspiring in light of tomorrow.
Here is MLK, Jr.'s speech in full and
Lime posted the text.

Here is a part...

There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you
be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of
the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long
as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the
motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as
long as the negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We
can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood
and robbed of their dignity by signs stating: "For Whites Only." We cannot be
satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York
believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we
will not be satisfied until "justice rolls down like waters, and righteousness
like a mighty stream."
I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and
tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. And some of
you have come from areas where your quest -- quest for freedom left you battered
by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You
have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith
that unearned suffering is redemptive. Go back to Mississippi, go back to
Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go
back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this
situation can and will be changed.
Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my
And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still
have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I have been tagged...

where is Grundir the Implacable when you need him, hmmm?
Probably cuddling with some Uruk-hai behind a shed, hurrumph.
a charming, witty, and clever friend from a former life and I recently bumped into each other online
(and hey, his insurance is going to cover all the damage around here, and I'm planning to claim it ALL, so shhhhh)
and he tagged me with a little New Year's photo meme!
Here it is:
Choose the 4th folder where you store your pictures on your computer.
Select the 4th picture in the folder.
Explain the picture.
Tag four people to do the same.
No Cheating (cropping, editing, etc.)

Ok, so his photo was a disgusting adorable photo of his incredibly cute and precious elder son.
Here is where I ended up.

This day this photo was taken is preserved in loving memory here. It was during January 2006 when we had something like 25 or 30 days of rainfall. That was back when Ariella was blogging, and as is obvious in this picture, it was not her favorite moment of the day. I'm completely unclear about what Thing Two is doing, I'm just glad it's not jazz hands.

There ya have it!~

P.S. Thanks for the blog fodder, Dustin :D

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Guess what happens when it snows and snows and snows and then it all melts in lots and lots of rain?

Go ahead, you look like a bright spark (in fact, you looook mahvelous), I bet you can guess.

You got it!
It brought to mind one of my favorite childhood stories, Winnie-the-Pooh, specifically,
In Which Piglet is Entirely Surrounded by Water.
But I digress. So, anyway...

the photos above were taken about a week apart at the same place on the local river so you can guess that nothing good was going to come THAT.

And in point of fact, lots of ill came of it.

The Action Stage on our river is 12.5 feet and it's officially flooding at 14 feet.

In preparation for the coming flood a veritable army of volunteers gathered in my town, downriver, to fill sand bags and protect the community.
This photo is from a cell phone but was taken by a friend who was there working hard so I thought I'd use it.

The sandbags were used as temporary levees in some places.
Huge piles of loose sand were also used.
The flood waters did end up in the highway here and it was closed for a while.
The flood damage is estimated at over $20 million altogether. The farmers are going to take a big hit, I'm afraid. Hope their insurance is paid up.
Here is an alpaca headed for higher ground, poor little guy (had to throw in the alpaca pic).
The view in this next pic usually goes; sky, hills, water, fields. All the water in the bottom half of the photo does NOT belong.

That is the sole access road to some of the local farms. They had to be evacuated. Some people couldn't get out before they were surrounded.
Rescue works went across the fields in boats to fetch out the stranded farmers.
The number of people who worked and volunteered was amazing, and the nearly endless hours they devoted are absolutely astounding.
The water level was horifically impressive.
Yesterday, the 10th, some homeowners ventured back to their residences.
Some started the process of salvaging what they could.
County and state workers have begun that work too.
It's been a rough couple weeks around here.
Can I come stay with you for a while?

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

"The world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings."

(Identify that quote for $200?) This sums up how I'm feeling right now.
Balancing cynicism and wonder is an ongoing feature of my inner life. Today wonder is winning.
It's another misty, green, grey day in Washington. But this one is amazing, somehow unlike the the 20,000 just like that have already come and gone.
The snow is almost completely gone, the plants have stretched out and remembered how to stand up straight after weeks of hunched survival. It feels good to be outside. The air is cool but welcoming and it's not a bit cold.

It's also perfect weather for catching up on some reading while being comfy and cozy indoors with a cup of tea.

I'm not a raving Terry Pratchett fan but last year I became acquainted with his not-quite-Christmas story, The Hogfather, and our whole family really loves it.
Death is a really wonderful character and he says this about us;

When you stop to consider that, it really is quite a feat. Hope you all are finding more wonder than boredom.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Is it spring yet?

The winter solstice is over.
Therefore the days are getting longer and we are making our way,
slowly, to be sure,
but inexorably toward warmer weather.

I'm getting a little antsy to be out on my motorcycle.
I'm not quite ready to suit up and take over the playground,
but Red Molly and I are definitely ready to hit the road.
Just waiting for the weather to hit 50.

Then we are are OUTTA here!
As of December 2006 I've had Red Molly for two years! Wow, time flies when you are having fun, eh?
Speaking of time, I've been blogging for AAAAAAAAGES!!
I started blogging in September of 2005, well, my dog, Ariella started blogging.
It didn't take me long to take over center stage.
The anthropomorphic personification deal is difficult to maintain long term...for some of us, others seem to be able to continue finding new and interesting way to do it.
here's hoping 2009 goes better than 2008,
Happy New Year!