Saturday, September 27, 2008


Seven things to do on a rainy Saturday

1. Clean out a closet or a drawer

2. Read a book

3. Watch a movie

4. Take a nap.

5. Bake cookies.

6. Play on the computer.

7. Phone a friend

What do you do on a rainy day?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Favorite Body Part

This month's ATC exchange theme is favorite body part. I thought I would do the eye as in window of the soul. I followed a technique from the book Altered Imagery using newspaper, water soluble oil pastels and collage elements.

The finished card didn't turn out as I first imagined. I had lettered heart and soul on the card, but the lettering was horrid and looked like an afterthought, no balance, no design. I printed out sheet music to the song Heart and Soul, tore it up and collaged over. The pastels were used to color over the white sheet music and blend it into the card. A much happier design.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wednesday Weigh-In

No whining, wailing or gnashing of teeth. I gained a pound this week. I think it was a combination of stress with the Verizon installation and the scale was being generous with its 3 pound loss from last week.

I had a pat on the back moment when I went looking for a new fall jacket. I saw a nice one in the LL Bean catalog, a waterproof shell with a zip out polartec lining. Wear one or both for 3 different jackets. Unfortunately all the petite sizes were sold out and LL isn't going to reorder. So I went to Kohl's hoping to find a similar jacket. No such luck, but I did try on a polartec jacket and I tried it on in a medium. And the medium almost fits! It was a little snug, but a few pounds less and it would fit! I was happy with the "atta girl" and decided to wait before I bought a new jacket.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Shout Out

Since Erica posted her good news on her blog , On The Write Path, I can finally give a shout out to her. I've been busting to tell the news since I learned about it late Friday night! Erica sold her first book, a historical novel called The Bartered Bride.

Congratulations, Erica!

Saturday, September 20, 2008


Seven reasons to be unhappy with the installation and phone service for Verizon FIOS

1. We were told the technician would arrive at 1pm and the installation would take 4 hours. We took time off from work. At 2pm, we called to find out the job had not been dispatched and the technician would arrive between 1pm and 5 pm for an installation that would take 4 to 6 hours.

2. A call at 5pm said the technician would be on his way. The technician, two helpers and 3 Verizon trucks with cherry pickers arrived at 6:50pm. The lead technician was surly. I was too. They couldn't get things up and going so left close to 9pm with a promise they would arrive the next day at 3pm.

3. The next day, Charter, our previous cable company, yanked service to phone, Internet, and television. At 3pm, using my cellphone I called Verizon and waited on hold for a half an hour while the Customer Service Rep. tried to get in touch with the dispatcher and technician. The technician called a half hour later to say he would arrive in an hour. He kept good his word, was in a better mood and set about getting phone service, Internet service on my computer, the television in the bedroom up and running, and the local network stations on the television in the sunroom.

4. When asked for documentation for the telephone options such as setting up voice mail, he said Verizon would be mailing the booklet in 3 to 5 business days. There was a help section online. The technician left close to 9pm. By the way, what is the proper etiquette when dealing with technicians who arrive during dinner and the family hour? Are they invited to dinner? Given clean linen and shown to the guest room?

5. The online phone help was as useful as a teat on a bull. Though it told me in a general vague way how to set up the voice mail, it did not provide access numbers or temporary passwords. I had to call Customer Service to obtain this information.

6. Through online help I found the access codes for Call Forwarding to another telephone. A feature I use quite frequently. When I went to attempt to forward calls to the home phone to my cellphone, I received a call can't be completed as dialed message. A call to Customer Service revealed that this service is not available as part of my package. I would have to pay $5 per month for this feature. Seems that all of the features the cable company included in our cable bundled package, Verizon charges!
7. The installation began on Monday and was completed Wednesday night. I have not received documentation for the telephone features.

The whole experience left me more with an OMG! feeling instead of the WOW from the Verizon media blitz. If it sounds too good to be true, it generally is. I'm not inspired to recommend Verizon FIOS to anyone without adding caveat emptor, buyer beware. Verizon, do you hear me now?

I had no trouble with Charter, the cable company. The technicians arrived on time, were never surly, completed installations in a timely fashion, and left us up and completely running. Maybe we should have paid attention to the adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wednesday Weigh-In

Well, butter my buns and call me a biscuit! I lost 3 pounds this week. I had to get on the scale three times to make sure I was reading the scale correctly. Yup, down three for a total of 12 and 28 left to go.

My friend, Red, came over on Friday for bagels, and I was whining to her about hitting the plateaus. Red is a personal trainer and fitness instructor. She told me if I was eating what I should be eating without hitting too many goodies and still not losing weight, I needed to shake things up. Red said your body gets used to things. Starts thinking this is pretty easy, I'm ok.

She suggested I use the incline feature on my treadmill. Walk a while at my normal routine then hit the incline and walk a few minutes "up hill". It worked!

What do you do when you hit the plateau?

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Seven on Sunday

Seven reasons why I was late blogging the Seven on Saturday.

1. I got a new toy. A smartphone.

2. The Quick Start instructions were neither quick, explicit, or easy to follow

3. If one has sausage fingers, one ought not to reset the locking device password. Really easy to get locked out of the device.

4. Phone Tech Support isn't always supportive.

5. Spent an hour at the phone store, while the Tech tried to figure out how to do a hard reset.

6. After the Tech had reactivated the phone, I had him disable the locking device.

7. Spent the afternoon synching the device to the computer, playing with some of the features, and printing out the user manual.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I Ott-a

Last night was the museum open house. I had a nice alcove all to myself so I set up the table so I could demonstrate a white vine illuminated letter. Had the letter all sketched and outlined ready to paint. Close at hand, my brushes, paints, water and ,my newest toy, the battery powered Ott lamp so I could see what I was painting. The white vine work is detailed, and the lighting in the education wing hallway wasn't meant for fine work.

Some people watched me paint from a distance. Some brave souls came over to talk to me as I worked. You know what they asked me? No, they didn't ask me what I was teaching or what I was working on. They wanted to know about the Ott lite! LOL What it was, where I got it.

I Ott-a work for the company!

In case you're wonder, the Ott lite is a portable desk lamp. It's white light shows true color without glare. The battery powered light works off of a wall outlet too. An excellent choice for artists and crafters. Lighweight, portable and has a small footprint. Perfect for taking along to workshops. The battery powered light is on sale at Jo-Ann's Fabrics. On line only and free shipping.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Open House

Tonight from 5:30 PM to 7PM is the Worcester Art Museum's Open House for Fall classes. Prosepctive students can meet instructors, watch demonstrations, and enjoy light refreshment. I'll be demonstrating white vine illumination, a popular style of illumination from the 15th century.

This is the little sign I made for my table so people will know what I'm doing.
If you're in the area drop on by and say hello.

Wednesday Weigh-In

This little piggy went to market.

This little piggy bought chips and went home.

This little piggy had a stressful week

This little piggy ate the chips.

This little piggy cried, "wee, wee, wee, I gained a pound."

This littel piggy will try again.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Color Meme

Borrowed this meme from Erica's blog:

1. What is your current favorite color? Blue

2. Had your favorite color changed over the years? Nope, loved it as a kid. Still love it. And red is a second favorite color.

3. Is your current favorite color one that is currently trendy? I'm not sure it was ever trendy except for baby boys, but blue is always in vogue for me.

4. What is your favorite color combination? When making pastepaper, I love blue, purple and green with a dash of gold for sparkle.

5. Is that combination a popular one? It is with me.

6. What is your favorite way of using color? I'm hopeless when it comes to decorating. The house is so small I worry that anything other than white will close the rooms in.

7. What colors look good on you? Hmm, my mother dressed me in pink when I was little. I hate the color. I've been told royal blue looks good on me and I think I look pretty good in red.

8. What colors look bad on you? Any color I don't like. I'm not partial to brights like orange, yellow and I don't care for any shade of pink

9. Do you wear colors that don’t look good on you just because you like them? Nope.

10. What is your favorite neutral color? Black or Navy

How about you? Care to take a stab at the Color Meme?

Sunday, September 7, 2008

I'm Guest Blogging

I'm guest blogging on Writer's and Artist's Doubts at On the Write Path Stop on by to see what I have to say.

The photograph is Marblehead Light, Marblehead, MA and is the source of the expression light dawns on marble head.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


I'm not much of a dog fancier, but Frauee got me hooked on a virtual dog at Pet Pupz. This is Bear, my virtual dog, a chow chow. The bear is my animal totem, and I thought the puppy looked like a big ol' teddy bear so that's how he got his name. So seven things I enjoy about my virtual pet.

1. I don't have to clean up after him or empty a litter box.

2. I don't have to take him for a walk and business in the rain or snow.
3. I can earn puppy points to buy things for Bear by petting the puppies of strangers. It took me a while to figure that out, but now it's a happy little time waster.

4. No expensive vet bills.

5. Bear doesn't get sick (Not that I know of. Not sure what happens to Bear's happiness ratings if Bear is ignored)

6. Bear is well behaved. Doesn't jump on me or sleep in my bed. Those things are reserved for the alpha male. (-;

7. Bear never whines or barks.
Do you have a virtual pet?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

White Vine

Next week is the Worcester Art Museum Open House. Since my class has been given a spiffy new title, The Art of Calligraphy, I volunteered to do a demonstration. I'll be painting an illuminated initial which I sketched out and outlined with a Micron Pigma pen on Arches 90 lb hot press, watercolor paper. I chose a 15th century white vine style as I thought it was traditional and will also double as my new logo. The letter was copied from an example in The Illuminated Alphabet by Timothy Noad and Patricia Seligman.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Wednesday Weigh-In

I wasn't looking forward to hopping on the scale this morning. I anticipated a gain so had to weigh myself two times before I believed the scale. No gain, no loss. A tiny feeling of disappointment. It's been 11 weeks and I've only lost 10 lbs. Yes, yes, I'm happy I dropped the ten, but I didn't think it would take this long. I thought I'd hit a two pound drop per week. I thought the first 10 pounds would be easy to drop. Silly me. On with the downhill race.