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Monthly Archives: December 2013
Today was a mournful day. Every morning I go grab coffee at a local coffee shop called Jitters, which has been around Redmond much longer than I have: 22 years to my 14. But now they’ve had to close their location (a repurposed bank building) and haven’t been able to find a new place.
When I set out to make the glass garden flowers for Mom, I found plenty of pictures but very few tutorials. So here’s a walkthrough of the process, which should illustrate one important thing about these: they’re not a last minute project. The paint takes time to dry, as does the adhesive, which you will need to do in at least two stages.
We’ve (as in two humans, two cats, a briefly lived betta, and assorted temporary insects) lived in this space since 2001. While I’ve decluttered and cleaned before, cruft inevitably creeps in. An odd little ball colored red, white, and blue. Countless keys. Sharpies in a rainbow of colors. Twists and ties and clips. Twenty years after my D&D days, there’s still a few polyhedrals rolling around.
Many things have memories attached, and discarding the object sometimes feels like discarding the memory. The paperweight I bought in Prague while traveling to train Eastern Europeans about network security software. A tin butterfly from our time in Mexico when I was a child. The sequinned baby shoes I use as a prop in the flash class. I feel as though if I put them aside I may lose the thing that triggers the memory.
While I’m not ditching everything, a lot of these are getting digitized.
One of Mom’s presents this year was a set of garden flowers made from odd plates and dishes. These were a lot of fun to assemble, and I want to, over the course of the next few months, make a set that goes across the problematically shady front section of her house. Combined with the tulips and irises, that should fill things out and add both color and a touch of individuality.
I’d gotten the idea from seeing them on Pinterest. I did do some picking through thrift stores to find odd bits of china, but also used some pieces I’d gathered over the years. It seemed like a nice way to carry out the decluttering mission, but preserve some of those memories. I augmented some pieces with glass or metallic spray paint and glued on glass pebbles, marbles, and other odd bits. The fixative for all of this is Marine Goop, which you can find on Amazon.
One of the things 2014 is bringing is all sorts of interesting and awesome changes, but part of that is a need to trim down drastically. So I’ve been going through my books getting ready to sell a lot of them. Many are from teen years, college, or grad school. Some sparked stories, or were gifts, or were written by people I respect and admire and sometimes love. Some are signed. Some have notes jotted in them. Some were books that changed my life.
Here’s five gifts for the writer on your list (even if it’s yourself).
I’m going to be experimenting with including some guest content on my blog, primarily authors talking about their books. If you’re interested in participating in that, please drop me a line. Here author C.M. Michaels talks about the necessary components of critique groups. Continue reading