Monthly Archives: January 2014

Gone for the Weekend

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERASabu and I are headed for the beach and the Newport Spin-In, car loaded to the gunnels with fiber and stuff for sale. Hopefully there will be room in the car on the return trip.

I am woefully behind in my blog reading and comment responding and I hope you’ll forgive me – the week has been crazy busy. But, hey, I launched the new website – Starting Over Designs. It’s still rough, but I printed out business cards to hand out so there should be a website to look at, right? More details and stuff next week.

Have a great weekend, everyone!


Posted by on January 31, 2014 in Dogs, Fiber Arts, Social Interaction


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Photo Challenge

After I put up the post yesterday I saw Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge. The subject is The Back of Things. I’d been virtually thumbing through the photos from the New York trip and knew I had the perfect shot for this challenge –

100_1330One can’t visit New York and not take a ferry out to Ellis Island to see the statue of liberty. She looks just like all the photos you’ve ever seen and so I decided to take a picture of her from the back because how often do you see that view? The family thought I was being weird again, but they’re used to my whimsies and waited patiently while I framed the perfect shot.

The original is in color, of course, so I had to find a program to convert it. I’ve been mourning the loss of PicNik since Google absorbed them and until this morning had not found a replacement. I’ve tried to learn PhotoShop, but my brain is full – not a bit of room to fit in a technical program. I needed point and click. The camera does a great job, I just wanted a bit of enhancement, maybe a little text, a border, you know, easy stuff.

This morning, while I was supposed to be working, I found PicMonkey. Hurrah! Exactly what I need and I’ve even ponied up the cash for the Royale package and access to all the Good Stuff.

I find myself inspired and excited by the idea of using my photos to make a bit of cash. If nothing else, I’ll have a stash of one-of-a-kind cards for every occasion. Stay tuned for more details on this project over at the Starting Over Designs blog.

I’ve heard it said that one needs seven streams of income to be truly rich, and 2014 will be the year I do my best to make that happen.


Posted by on January 30, 2014 in Cee's Black & White Challenge


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Share Your World Week 4

It’s Wednesday and that means it’s time for another installment of Share Your World brought to you by Cee’s Photography.

This week’s questions and answers:

Do you recharge your energy by going out with friends for a good time or by spending with quiet time alone?

Quiet time alone is the only way I can recharge. Being around lots of people is exhausting. Going out with a couple of friends is fine, but large gatherings are difficult for me. Saturday will be one of those days – a large room full of people sucking away my life force. Don’t get me wrong, they’re all wonderful people doing what I really love (spinning wool, etc.) but it’s a very long day that takes me a week to recover from.

What is the most number of blankets you’ve ever had on your bed?

Five, just last month. Then I got smart and bought an electric blanket. Best.Purchase.Ever. I’ll never be without one again.

You are invited to a party that will be attended by many fascinating people you never met. Would you attend this party if you were to go by yourself?

Yep. If the people are interesting enough and I want to talk to them I’d rather be alone so I wouldn’t be distracted by someone who might have a different agenda than I do.

Do you like talking to people on the phone? Or do you prefer voice mail or email?

I love email for its ease and speed, but you can’t convey everything with the written word. Like sarcasm. Sarcasm often falls flat via email but I can totally tear someone down on the phone. I find that I like talking on the phone a lot lately. Since there will be no interrogation afterwards, it’s actually quite pleasant. I thought that 1000 minutes a month would be plenty (it is 16 hours, after all) but those minutes have been getting used up before the month is over. Who knew I had that much to say? I hate to leave a voicemail, though, and avoid it whenever possible. If you answer my call, I’ll talk your ear off, but if you don’t, well, it might just be as if I had never phoned at all…

Today Cee posted a fabulous picture with the title ‘Bee Seen‘ and I can’t help but add my own “bee” picture in imitation 🙂



Posted by on January 29, 2014 in Memes, Share Your World



A Blast from the Past

I was searching through some CDs last night looking for pictures for a new project and came across some shots from a family vacation to New York.

Every year when I was growing up Mom watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV. It was her dream to see it in person one day and in 2004 that’s what we did – Mom, Dan, Sis, Harley and I* flew to New York for Thanksgiving week to see the parade and everything else we could fit into a week. It was wonderful! Okay, I didn’t really care for the parade because of the crowds, but I was there for other reasons. I wanted to ride a horse in Central Park. Crazy, right?

This is Gillespie, one of the school horses from the (sadly gone) Claremont Riding Academy located two blocks from Central Park in Manhattan:

NYC 139The stable itself was amazing to someone who was used to horses being housed at ground level. A woman yelled down into a door for Gillespie and in a minute there was a thundering of hooves on wood and here came a lovely dappled palomino up the steep ramp, saddle and bridle on. He paused in the doorway, looked around, saw me and walked right up. This horse knew his stuff and was ready to get out of there.

Not being a total idiot, I mounted up to ride a bit in the arena and was disappointed to find Mr. G (as I called him in my mind) was rather nappy and not at all happy to be trotting circles around the other riders and the support columns spaced regularly around the very small arena.

As soon as we stepped outside, however, he perked right up and heaved a big sigh as if he’d been waiting for days to see the sunshine, and maybe he had. The picture above makes him look sleepy, but what you don’t see is the ambulance with sirens on and flashing lights that had just passed. Mr. G stood firm, not even flinching when it came roaring up and around the corner. I was terrified that he would do something stupid, but he was not at all fazed by the Big City.

NYC 141In order to get to the bridle paths in Central Park, we had to walk with the traffic (one way) two blocks and then turn two more corners (more one way traffic) and cross a very busy street into the park proper. It was quite an experience – no one batted an eye to see a horse calmly walking along, cars zipping by on one side, bikes and pedestrians on the other.

NYC 145Once we reached the park there was just enough time to circle the lake before the rental time ran out. It was a beautiful November day, partially cloudy with no wind. In fact, the weather the entire week was wonderful for November – chilly but not cold and dry most of the time, almost like Winter was holding off so we could enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime trip.

We returned to the stable and Mr. G went right back down the ramp after I gave him a couple of carrots for being such a good boy. I thought it must be a hard life for him, not being able to graze outside, but he seemed happy enough and didn’t hesitate to head back to his stall.

It was an experience I’ll never forget and I hope someday to ride in Hyde Park in London, although it’s been a few years since I last sat a horse. This post makes me miss my equine friends and think about taking lessons at one of the nearby stables…

* The narc (of course) refused to attend because his privacy could not be maintained and so he stayed home. I was instructed to call him every evening at 7:00 his time (11:00 PM in NY) to report in. We were running all day and he expected me to call him after everyone else went to bed. I resented it and lost a lot of sleep just to please him – after all, I had “abandoned” him to go gallivanting off with my family instead of staying home to take care of him. Whatever.


Posted by on January 28, 2014 in Family, Happy, History, Horses


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Share Your World Week 3

Time for another Share Your World post brought to you by Cee’s Photography.

This week’s questions and answers:

In what do you find the simplest of joys?

Naps. I love a nap. A long nap on a lazy day is just about the best thing ever.

Jello or Pudding? And what is your favorite flavor?

Pudding. Always. Never Jell-o. Ever. Chocolate, of course.

Is there a language you would like to learn?

I would love to refresh my Spanish.

Do you prefer juice or fruit?

Fruit. Something about juice turns my stomach. I occasionally have a small glass of orange juice, but I’d much rather eat fruit than drink it. Unless there’s rum, in which case I’ll chuck in a few ice cubes and enjoy.

And there you have it.

I would write about Lil’ Revy and his latest exploits but I’m exhausted from being woken up multiple times last night. The new twist to this particular plot is that he didn’t wake me up being bad, oh, no, he woke me up being sweet – he wanted to snuggle at some ungodly hour before dawn and was not taking ‘no’ for an answer. He kept brushing his whiskers against my face and purring whenever I fell asleep and stopped petting.

Chocolate pudding and a nap would be really good right about now…


Posted by on January 23, 2014 in Memes, Share Your World



A little slice of life ’round here

Getting used to the “new” camera. Strange that it can shoot video in low light but not stills, but that’s a post for another day. This is what the evenings look like around here –

After they’re done wrestling I go around and pick up all the stuff they knocked down. Sigh. It’s a bit wearing, but it’s also a lot of fun to watch. They’re the very best of friends and I wish they could go outside together to really rip it up.

Today marks my one year anniversary! At 11:45 AM on January 20, 2013 I drove away from the narc’s house with the last of the stuff I couldn’t live without. I have lived one year under my own roof without the influence of the narc on my everyday routine. The video above would not have been possible while living with the narc, as joy was not permitted unless it was his own.

So many wonderful things have happened over the past year and I have been so blessed in every way. The narc was truly a millstone around my neck, holding me back from using my full potential to create the life that would enable me to be happy and fulfilled.

To all of you in abusive relationships: there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Be brave. Throw off your shackles and walk into the light. It’s hard. It sucks. It’s scary. But it’s worth every hardship to live a life free of abuse.

Life is good! 27 irons in the fire, all of them glowing brightly, lighting my path to happiness. Thank you all for joining me on this journey 🙂


Posted by on January 20, 2014 in Cats, Crazy, Dogs, RV Living


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Me without you

Jennifer Nettles says it very well –

The sky is quite a lot bluer now that I’ve left the Coast 🙂

Also? I was almost on TV last night!


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Posted by on January 16, 2014 in Music



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