Jan 31, 2007

Welcome, Stella!

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Some Stella facts:
  • Her full name (now) is Estelanim, which comes from the Lord of the Rings. It's Sindarin and means hope for myself (estel = hope, an = for, im = (essentially) myself (although it's more complicated that that somewhat)).
  • She's about 2 years old.
  • She was an abandoned/feral/stray mama cat and was fostered in a volunteer's home for 6 months before being released for adoption.
  • She's been blind in one eye (since birth, they believe); it doesn't seem to bother her in the slightest.
  • She's a little love bug but has a healthy fear of Katie, though she unbent far enough to let Katie pet her a couple of times today. It helps that Katie's shrieking enthusiasm has calmed down and she's not chasing Stella as much. Fortunately, Katie is very good about not grabbing animals and will, indeed, pet gently when reminded.
We still miss Norm frightfully, of course, but Stella is going to fit in really well, I believe.


Jan 28, 2007

Still Working On It!

Thank you so much for your helpful suggestions! I really was having a hard time even getting started brainstorming and you guys were a great help!

Ok, now, if I could have your opinions on these potential names below (they are all available as website names as of today)...

flashinglikesilver.com ("my paddle's clean and bright, flashing like silver")
besilvered.com ("bewitched, bothered, and bewildered")
mightaswelldance.com ("life may not be the party we'd hoped for but while we're here we might as well dance")
onitaria.com (from the Iroquois word Onitariio, silvery waters, the same word that Ontario comes from -- I am from Ontario, NY originally)

You're welcome to just riff on these as well! Thanks again so much!

P.S. I promise my next post will be about our new cat and NOT about jewelry!!


Jan 26, 2007

To Be Named Later

I've made the decision. I am going to make jewelry for sale on the web. I'm sure I'll never get rich but, hey, if you can make your hobby break even, great! If not, well, I should have lots of lovely jewelry, right?

I already have my graphic design business (www.3-seconds.com) so I don't have to set up another LLC or anything. What I need is a name. And that's always the hard part. It took me over a year, brainstorming with tons of people, to find a name for my business that I liked, that was catchy, and was available on the web.

So, help me brainstorm on this, please!

Adjectives to describe the jewelry (in my opinion):
one of a kind
stylish (i hope)
trendy (sort of right now)

I figure my average target customer is between 28 and 48, female, with a distinct sense of their own style. Prices are expected to run from $25-$50 for necklaces. I will probably also offer some earrings and, eventually, bracelets.

suggested so far:
  • bijouxK2.com (I like the French but not sure people can spell it.)
  • various plays on me being the "ornamental" child:
    • ornamentalchild.com (sounds like a kidswear store though)
    • ornamentalone (I like this because it also looks like "ornament alone" in addition to "ornamental one"
    • ornamentalchick
    • ornamental girl
  • (your suggestion here)
I really liked Silver Girl and Beadjoux (go, CSue!), but they were both taken as websites already. It doesn't have to actually say jewelry - after all, GAP "says" jeans but it doesn't really, if you know what I mean. A word that encompassed how I want customers to feel wearing the jewelry would work as well or better in some instances.

Your thoughts?


Jan 19, 2007

Sadly, I am a Very Girly Girl

and I realized this this morning as someone asked me what eyeshadow I was wearing. Ok, yes, it was sad that at a 9:30 a.m. children's program I was, indeed, wearing eyeshadow but the truly sad part is that I could say, without prompt:

It's MAC's surreal and shimmermoss.

What's sadder yet is that I could continue (had I chosen to)... I'm also wearing MAC's fluidline eye liner in frostlight, the prolash mascara in charcoal brown, the browset in beguile, studio fix for foundation in C25, raw refined creme lipliner with goddess lipstick over top.

This is (slightly) mitigated by the fact that I don't wear makeup every day. But I do like it. I really like it. Let me loose in the MAC store and I have the best hour I've spent in a month. Send me home with a new eyeshadow or lipstick and life is just grand. (I got one of those handy palettes to put my eyeshadows in the other day - woohoo!)

Someday, I'm going to have one of those little multimirrored dressing tables with good light and lots of makeup storage space but, even now, I get a little thrill just thinking about my makeup drawer all neat and tidy now.

I was brought up to wear little or no makeup. I went to a women's college. I fully believe in fully empowering women to do whatever they so choose. I embrace nontraditional roles myself - I'm a pilot; I'm our nuclear family's fix-it person; for God's sake, I'm the dead-animal-remover at our house. But I surely do like makeup.

Almost as much as I like cute shoes.

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Jan 17, 2007

Your Personal Penguin

This is a story of a penguin who desperately wants to attend to a hippo instead of wander around the ice with other penguins. I can't claim credit for this - Sandra Boynton is a children's book genius. So, why am I sharing this then? You need to go listen to the recording that goes along with the book. Davy Jones (yes, of the Monkees) sings Your Personal Penguin.

In other news...

Thanks to an old navy wool curtain and a section of superyard, we finally have a family portrait.
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Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Big thanks to my mom and dad also who pushed the shutter for the family one which meant I didn't have to find the book that came with the camera to look up (again) how to use the timer.

And that, she said, is that for this evening.

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Jan 15, 2007

Bringing Everyone Up To Date

Ok, the monster blog post... So, let's see where were we before I left off...

The holidays:
Christmas. We went to my sister's for Christmas. She lives just outside of Syracuse, NY so you'd think we'd be guaranteed a nice, white, Lake-effect, Christmas but nope. They've been just as oddly warm as we have. We had a lovely time: Katie enjoyed playing in conjunction with her cousin TJ. People seemed to really like what I got them and, for the first time in many years, I liked what I was given. I would not, however, recommend going to a long church service with two toddlers under 18 months old. Distinctly not a spiritual experience. We ate far too much. Katie learned the word "cookie" in less than 24 hours. (She makes the sign for cracker and says "coo-coo". It was quite adorable except that for the 2 weeks after we got back, she did it approximately 15-20x an hour.)

New Year's. We got back from Syracuse on Tuesday and John and I left for Boston on Saturday. Yes, we left our molar-teething toddler with my parents and we got a weekend away BY OURSELVES. It was absolutely wonderful. The Omni Parker House is the nation's oldest continuously operating hotel, they say; it's beautiful and the staff is unfailingly pleasant, knowledgeable, and efficient. The food was good and the hotel bars both stocked my favorite vodka - what more can I ask?!! We ate at the hotel restaurant one night (honest-to-goodness Parker House rolls!) and at McCormick & Schmick's in Quincy Market the next. Upon our return, my sister asked what we'd done while we were gone. We slept. Ate, drank, and slept. Sunday morning, we read the Globe in bed until 11 a.m. It was absolutely decadent. We did eventually get up, have lunch at Durgin Park, and head to the MFA. And then came back to the hotel and slept some more. It was the nicest weekend I can remember having - ever.

Since New Year's. We've passed our second cycle since the miscarriage and it's time to start trying again. I'm not sure how I feel about this. I both want to get pregnant and am scared to. I am more determined than ever to have another child but I am afraid that it may not be meant to be. I guess only time will tell.

It was crazy when we got back. I was so behind on so many things (all that travel plays havoc with the "to do" list). But we got the Christmas stuff all put away (on a day that was 72°F - let me tell you, it is very surreal to be wearing a tank top and having all the windows open whilst one puts away one's Christmas decorations!!) and I am slowly starting to get caught up. I still need to make all the holiday bread I was supposed to make for people the weekend before Christmas that we all had the stomach flu. (Oh yeah, the weekend before Christmas, we all had the stomach flu.) But I have gotten my sister's birthday gift finished as you have seen and I've finished the baby blanket I started for Katie over a year ago. (Now I have to make a matching one for her new (old) dollbed.)

A word on the dollbed. I, personally, think it's really cool that the dollbed Katie will have was made by her great-great grandfather for her great grandmother. My dad sanded it down and repainted it for her. In fact, most of her (eventual) doll furniture will be refurbished family pieces. I just think that's really, really cool.

What else did I say I would cover? Oh, ok (went to check)... new year's resolutions and the upcoming year.

I don't think I want to call them resolutions. I think goals is a better term. My goals this year are:

1) To be the best parent and spouse I can be. Granted, this is a little vague - too bad!
2) To finish the poetry book and get a grant to have a bunch of them printed. This engenders of course a lot of little goals in between: take more photographs, assemble the book, learn how to find grants, learn how to write a grant request, work out the details of distribution, etc.
3) Join the prayer shawl ministry at our church.
4) Find more time for myself so that I don't become a nasty, resentful meanie.

You'll note that my two alltime most common "resolutions" aren't on there: lose weight and have a baby. Lose weight isn't on there because, basically, I've realized I can only focus on so much and I refuse to ask more sacrifice of what I enjoy. Have a baby isn't on there because to make it a goal would imply that it is under my control. Now, to a certain extent it is, i.e., if I don't have marital relations, I will not be getting pregnant. But, when it comes down to it, after all the fertility struggles and the miscarriage, I've realized that *I* am not in control of whether we get pregnant, God/The Universe/Love is. And that's that.

So, there we are - one monster post to keep you, um, er, entertained for a bit... no? not entertained? Um. Sorry about that!

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Jan 11, 2007

What I've Been Up To And Then Some

Be warned... my next post is likely to be both long and rambling on various subjects: the holidays, our trip to Boston, the upcoming year, New Year's resolutions, beginning with trying to conceive again, etc. Well, maybe I'll do a mini-challenge and do take one on each day next week...

In the meantime... as you'll read, we survived the holidays and then some. Yes, SmileyMamaT, I did get my bahooty motated, mostly at least.

And, over the last couple of months, I've picked up yet another new hobby... making jewelery. Taking a leaf from LauraJ's book, I wanted to share!!

First up, the very first stuff I ever made - for my college friend D'Arcy-Jean. (For those who sew, look up her book Fabric Leftovers!!) She looked at one of my favorite necklaces and said, "You know, you could make this." And that, as they say, was that.

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(sterling silver with varied glass beads)

This one is for my sister (who, hopefully, doesn't have my blog URL or she now knows what she's getting for her birthday!

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(sterling silver with rose quartz and two types of glass beads)

And this one is my "baby" necklace. It commemorates both Katie and the Baby That Wasn't. Yet another step in healing.

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(sterling with rose quartz, carnelian, and unakite - the first strengthening love bonds, the second two strengthening fertility and the reproductive system - for maximum effect, I should've made this with gold (good for healing) but couldn't find the alpha beads in gold nor, I suspect, could I have afforded them had I found them).

Speaking of healing... I am slowly moving forward with the poetry book. I am in the process of trying to take and choose photographs to accompany the poems. If you are willing to act as a photo-editor for this in a bit (will probably involve looking at a lot of photos online and comparing them with the poems in a PDF or word processing document), drop me a line, would you? (Jade, I'm tagging you on this one in particular - I know you're busy but you're *good*!)

That's all for tonight, folks! Same bat channel tomorrow! (er, or Saturday or, maybe, Sunday or Monday...)

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