Friday, July 31, 2015

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week

1. Don't often catch a glimpse of him, but the cardinal visited the feeder.

2. Loving the heatwave

3. Celebrated a milestone birthday.

4. A new, critter visitor made an appearance in the yard

5. Spent a day catching up on ICAD

How was your week?

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Throwback Thursday

27. January 2015
Don't whine. You don't have to shovel heat and humidity.

Monday, July 27, 2015

The Cookie Told Me

In August, Valerie Weilmuenster will be teaching an Advanced Illumination class on Ender's Island in Mystic, Connecticut. I'd like to attend, but I've been hemming and hawing. Himself just bought a new car. I have an expensive tooth repair coming up. Should I be selfish, take the money and go? What to do? What to do?

And then the answer from the fortune cookie. Stop waiting! Buy that ticket takes that special trip." Well, I can't ignore Fate. So, I'm going.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Cats Lesson 2

The next lesson began with drawing another page o'cats. Instead of drawing imaginary cats, we had to draw cats from photographs. So some of Ink's poses.

After warming up, with a marker and eyes closed blind contour drawings of imaginary cats. Then with eyes opened adding details and color.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Friday, July 24, 2015

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week

1. Had a nice visit with Himself's family at the annual Summer Clan Gathering. One of the SIL's and her spouse made home-made sausage. Sausage cooked on the grill was awesome!

2. Got a message in a fortune cookie. More later. (-:

3. The Young One turned 23. In my rush at the store to pick the red number candles, I grabbed a 4 by mistake. So age plus a year to grow on all in one.

4. Baked the Starlight Double Delight Cake from Ma's recipe book for the birthday cake.

5. Had a problem with a tooth (yeah, that's not the good thing). Got an appointment with the dentist the following day. I got the time mixed up and arrived an hour early. The dentist saw me right anyway and didn't make me wait the hour.  I ended up having to see an endodontist. Got an appointment with the endodontist on the same day at a time that got me in and out to make my committments for the rest of the day.

How was your week?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Index Card A Day, 45 - 47

Wicked - While meeting the Young One at her class,
waiting for the class to end. Could hear professor through the
door. Everything was wicked. Wicked big, wicked fast,
wicked good. No doubt he was a Boston boy.

Pot o' Flowers

Dangle a la Joan Fink

Monday, July 20, 2015

Cats Lesson 1

Encouraged by Robin from Pink House Studios, (Thank you!) I signed up to take Carla Sonheim's Cats, a self-directed drawing class. I have Carla's book Drawing Lab for Mixed Media Artists and have enjoyed working through some of the exercises. I had no doubt I would enjoy Cats (not to be confused with the musical which sux)

The first lesson was to warm up by drawing a page of cats from one's imagination. The only rule, you couldn't sketch and refine (and refine) your drawing with a pencil (guilty!), but had to put a permanent marker to paper.

Drawing was followed by painting juicy, watercolor blots and then adding details to bring out the cats. Fun.

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week.

1. All set to celebrate The Eldest's 27th birthday on Friday.

2. Except we had to wait until Sunday to have cake as she went to Connecticon (an anime convention) for the weekend.

3. Enjoyed playing with the essential oils that finally arrived.

4. Found the perfect size box to haul supplies to class.

5. Going through the toll booth on the Mass. Pike, the toll collector held out his hand to collect the toll, "That'll be an arm and a leg, please. "  "What?" I wasn't sure if I heard correctly, and I was in full-blown I-gotta-go here, then go there, then order this mode. Apparently, my serious face intimidated the big guy in the booth. "Sorry, was just teasin' you looked so serious." "Well, I was surprised. Toll collectors don't usually talk to drivers." "I talk all the time!" Meanwhile, while finding out how his mother's bunions were doing, a line started forming behind me. He handed my change back, and I left wishing him,"Have a good one." I think I was more amused with the fact that someone could find me intimidating.

How was your week?

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Throwback Thursday

From the wayback machine. I think this might have been the first award Dad received. This would have been in 1929.

City of Boston
This certifies that
is a member of the winning interclass baseball team of Miss Casey's division 5th grade Samuel Adams School. In testimony whereof this Certificate is awarded by authority of the School Committee. Signed by the Principal and Director of Physical Education.

I love the little certificate with its baseballs and baseball bats border. Looks like the kids got to fill in their own certficiate. I recognize the way dad made his 5.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Vision Board

As part of The Art of Stress Relief class I'm teaching, we made vision boards of our safe, happy place.

As I pulled pictures from magazines my blue theme emerged. A studio on an island in a lighthouse. How cool would that be?

No Fresnel lens. Just a huge space with 360 degree view of the ocean. There would be a place to relax outside and a gazebo to work outside.

Inside, a clean, airy, organized studio. Lots of windows and lots of space for supplies. I'm pretty sure the silhouette of the woman, is the person who will clean up after me.

Of course, the location doesn't need to make sense or be well thought out. Like what happens during storms or winters on the island when the ferry can't get through with food and other supplies. Donner, party of four...

Do you have a happy place where you would live and/or work?

Monday, July 13, 2015

Young Living Essential Oils, - Customer Service

6/17 I placed an order for a Premium Starter Kit along with a bottle of Thieves Cleaner concentrate, bottle of Thieves Essential Oil with Young Living Essential Oils. I was excited when the box from Young Living Essential Oils arrived on 6/25. I opened the box. Thieves Cleaner concentrate. Check. Thieves Oil. Check. A lovely diffuser, part of the Premium Starter Kit. Check. A cardboard tube holding a bottle of Lemongrass Essential Oil. What's this? I didn't order this. A box with a gate-fold opening. This must be the Premium Oils. 11 Essential Oils as a starter kit. Except inside was a single bottle of Citrus Fresh essential oil. Two energy juice packs. Some small envelope  samples of Lavender, Peppermint, Thieves, Lemon Oils.  And tons of literature about the company. Excitement quickly turned to disappointment. What the hell? Was this bait and switch?

No notice in the box the item was backorder. No email either.

I contacted the person who introduced me to Young Living Essential Oils. She had warned me before I placed my order that the product was great but "customer service sux." She contacted Customer Service. The order should ship 7/3. She also told them to send me a bottle of Grapefruit Essential Order for my aggravation.

The Grapefruit Essential Oil arrived on 7/3. Nothing else. No notice in the box that items were backordered. No email with an explanation.

As it was the holiday weekend and my friend was on vacation, I contacted a distributor friend of hers. Explained my sad story. She was very sympathetic. Said she'd try to find out what happened. Said other customers also did not receive the starter kit. I'm glad I had people to turn to and grateful for their help. Young Living Customer Service should be as conscientious as these two distributors.

Tues. 7/7, I was told supply ran out due to everyone ordering product at the same time. The distributor said Young Living Essential Oils would overnight the Premium Starter Oils. It would take a day to process and a day to overnight. By my reckoning, another package should have arrived on Thurs, Fri at the latest. I was hoping the other oils would arrive so I could make the Eldest some pampering items like hair spritz and foot soak for her birthday 7/10

7/12 Young Living must have sent the package by way of slow, pack mule. Nothing arrived over the weekend. And truth be told, I knew nothing would arrive. I had been warned. Customer service sux.

The company was quick to whack my credit card for the entire amount. These oils aren't cheap. More important, the company couldn't be bothered to just let me and other customers know the item ordered had to be back ordered. It's not rocket science. A quick email.

Dear Customer,
We're sorry to inform you, due to high demand, the item you ordered is on back order. You'll see your order on mm/dd.
We apologize for the incovenience.
Customer Service

Easy! If you need to, Young Living Customer Service, you have my permission to copy and paste the above email sample so you can let customers know, in a timely manner, when items have been backordered.

I don't have a warm and fuzzy feeling about dealing with Young Living. I feel they don't value me as a customer. I'm only part of the profit margin.  I'm not too sure I want to order from them again, and I'm pretty sure I won't be recommending the company to friends and family. An expensive lesson learned. Caveat emptor. Buyer be ware.

Young Living, you get an A for product quality and packaging. I've been real happy with the Thieves cleaner and Thieves essential oil I ordered. As to your Customer Service, you rate an EPIC FAIL.

And readers if you're wondering what I did about The Eldest's birthday gift? Fortunately, there are other companies that produce essential oils of comparable quality. I found  some NOW essential oils at my local GNC store.

This was my experience with Young Living Essential Oils. Your mileage may vary.

ADDENDUM: 13. July 2015 10:08 AM EDT, FedEx just delivered the Young Living Essential Oils I've been waiting and waiting for. While I'm happy to have what I paid for, the point is Young Living should have given me a courtesy e-mail informing me the oils would be on backorder when my order was first placed.

Sunday, July 12, 2015


Timex is back. He found a way to get to the bird feeder to enjoy a snack or two

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Index Card A Day, 35 - 38

Challenge Prompt: Portrait (done in the style of  Amedeo Mondigliani
Challenge Prompt: Backgammon



Friday, July 10, 2015

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week.

1. Wasn't able to join The Brother to watch the fireworks from Worcester as Himself had a stomach bug. Instead, we enjoyed watching the televised fireworks from the Boston Esplanade from the comfort of the sun room.

2. Saw Avengers: Age of Ultron. Better than I expected it to be. Thor. Deep sigh. Though Showcase North Cinema, would be helpful if the sound for the coming attractions was turned down by a million decibels. The sound was so loud my brain vibrated in my skull and spilled out of my ears.

3. The birds have finally discovered the bird feeder. Besides the sparrows, a yellow finch came to visit.

4. Had the first class for my Art of Stress Relief. Chi Gong exercises combined with making small works of art. Wonderful group of students. Will be a fun class.

5.  Encouraged by blog buddy, Robin, of Pink House Studio, I signed up for Cats a, bite-sized online class from Carla Sondheim.

How was your week?

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Throwback Thursday

June 1988, All dolled up for Himself''s
10th  year class reunion at Holy Cross
Ma made my tent dress

Twenty-seven years ago today, I went into labor with the Eldest.

From the labor room, I called my friend, Teague, to see if she could record Robert Redford in The Electric Horseman. (I had priorities) Silly noob, I thought by midnight, we'd have a baby. Twenty-four hours and a C-section later, we had a bouncing, baby girl.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The Bunny

Maybe Himself should have eaten the bunny earlier in the season. Since the bunny bought the farm, the Red Sox have been winning.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Index Card A Day, 32 - 34

Challenge Prompt: Weather, Bostonians tell the weather
by the lights on the old Hancock Tower. 

Occultation of Venus and Jupiter

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Index Card A Day - 29 - 31

Challenge Prompt: Iced Cream

Challenge Prompt: Telephone

Challenge Prompt: Trivia

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Index Card A Day - 26 - 28

Challenge Prompt: Exotic

Challenge Prompt: Academic

Challenge Prompt: Dramatic