Saturday, September 15, 2007

Millinery: Materials + Inspiration + Energy = Creativitiy

You might recall this picture that I posted awhile back.
I was, and still am, quite smitten by the delicate veil.
I also like the ombre velvet leaves on the top of the parasisol circular hat.

Guess what?

I found a vintage remnant of that veil on Ebay.

It is gorgeous, delicate, and perfect.

The peachy skin color is known as "complexion" when found in veiling. No wonder; it does match a Caucasian skin tone perfectly, leaving only shadows of the veiling when worn.

But wait! (as they always say in TV ads...) There's more!

This lovely piece is also calling out for the creation of a stupendous hat. It is a fairly large piece, so I'll be able to do a full face treatment if I wish.

I also got three tiny pieces (six inch by 12 inch) of another pattern in complexion.

A dozen hoods await blocking...

All I need now is energy.
I had tons of it two days ago.
(Shrugs shoulders.)
It's going to be in the mid 90's today, or at least will feel like 95, according to the weather guy.
I wonder if he knows about how temperatures feel like to a woman who has her own hormonally based weather system to contend with.
Sometimes it feels like hotter than h----, if ya know what I mean, even though the thermostat is set at 72.
I really don't get it. How can I be fizzing with energy for creativity one day, go to bed and wake up totally blank?
Oh well.
Once fall truly arrives, I know my creative energy will return.
It always does.
And the materials and inspirations are all in place, ready and waiting for that gloriously cool day.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Flash back: High School Senior Picture

I noticed on Dawn's blog that some folks were posting their high school senior pictures on their blogs today. I don't have the colored picture at my house, so I just shot a picture as I appeared in my year book.

So here I am, in the La Jolla High School class of 1972!
The drape was a powder blue that made me looks wan. No make up, just a touch of lip gloss.

In a moment of bravery, I decided to not only post my high school senior picture BUT.....are you ready for this: TODAYS picture of me, sans make up, a touch of lip gloss, 35 years later.

Now I dare everyone out there to do the same!

I only changed the "now" snapshot in Picasa by making it black and white, added film grain, glow, then lightened and shadowed to match the high school picture.
If you accept the challenge, please feel free to do the same!

(Yes, if I had Photoshop I would have been tempted to erase the under eye wrinkles, but then again, I earned those wrinkles! They are staying!)
Oh, and I weighed about 40 lbs less in high school than I do now. I've always had a full German face!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The rest of the visit

I took the above picture at the local nursery; the flowers looked like two angels in blue to me.
More about the nursery later....

Day two of my folks visit was VERY busy! After a nice breakfast, Mom, Dad and I headed to the forest to walk the path to the lake and to look for the magnificent spiders.

The path to the woods is flat, and easy to walk along while enjoying the sights. On this particular morning, butterflies were in abundance. I can recall at least five kinds, and they were flittering along with us, stopping on the path, then flittering again. I felt like we were entertaining the butterflies that particular morning.

Dad and I kept trying to come up with reasons why the butterflies rested on the decomposed granite path instead of on the beautiful flowers that were abloom next to the path.

Where ever is a Master Naturalist when you need one?

More curiously, the dragonflies do the same thing; they fly along with you as you walk, then come to rest on the path just ahead, then they take off again before you can get a decent picture.

Not that I could have gotten a decent picture even if they had held still...what a dope, I forgot to grab my camera before we headed out for our walk.

You will just have to image a warm gentle morning breeze, fields of tall grasses and small hedges of purple flowers the size of quarters. Once we got into the forest we did spot several spiders on their golden webs (golden due to pollen...magical!) and checked out the fungi and flowers that dotted the primeval swampy landscape.

We sat at the lake on a bench and just enjoyed the view and the time together before walking back through the woods and the fields.

(Come visit me! You will love the walk. Don't be afraid of the spiders...they are very devoted to their webs and wouldn't dream of bothering you if you don't bother them!)

Once we got back and showered up, we next headed to the Kingwood Garden Center.

(Caption: Partners in Crime)
Dad was on a mission: Nematode Control. Nematodes are microscopic worm like creatures that live in the soil and attack tomato bushes. They may attack other things as well, but they are mostly hated for attacking tomatoes.

Dad had been fighting them for years; he even tried growing his tomatoes in pots above the ground. No luck with that either.
A friend of his in Florida sent him a quarter cup of Nematode control, and it did the trick!
Just adding a teaspoon to the soil solved the problem

There was just one remaining problem:
The Nematode Control product is illegal to sell in California.

(Don't get me started...California pushes my buttons all the time on what they don't allow and do allow, which generally should be the exact opposite. That is, what they are against, I usually am for, and what they are for, I am usually against.)

The way I see it is if my almost 84 year old dad wants to smuggle nematode control in his bags when he flies back to San Diego, he can go right ahead.

See that cap?

He served in WWII.
I think it will be just fine if he kills a few microscopic worms the same way we do in Texas and Florida and everywhere else.
If they arrests him, I'll get a good lawyer and visit him in prison.

Couldn't be much worse than the time he spent in the Navy.
Isn't that right Dad?
While Dad was busy with his criminal activity, Mom was studying this area.

Various seasonings and dip mixes using Texas grown herbs.
She got some for herself and as thank you gifts for the neighbors for watching their cat Rufus while they were out of town visiting me.

The garden center is always a hoot to visit. Check out these garden gnomes, dressed in Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana college team colors!

As usual, they didn't have the Texas school where I got my Masters degree represented.
Texas Womans football, we are STILL undefeated!

Nayh nayh nanayah!
If you must feed the squirrels, at least you can do it in style if you get this little treasure.
And yeah, we buy squirrel corn just like that and have it available for the furry mooches that live in our yard.

After visiting the garden center we headed over to Steinmart to see if we could find Mom a pair of shoes to wear to a wedding.
The silvery pair was a perfect match. They were real leather and half off, as were the other beige pair and the leather purse to match.
Such a steal...I shouldn't tell you...but the two pair of shoes were less than $30 together!

Next stop: The grocery store.
I was out of OJ, and Dad hadn't gotten to troll HEB for samples and local food.
I did what I now call a "Lovella" and asked a perfect stranger to take our picture out front.

Dad had fun chatting up the food sample ladies, and we got some treats for lunch as well.
I know this will sound weird, but I love visiting grocery stores when I visit people.
I just like to see what stuff is available that I haven't ever seen before.
Dad spotted a Smoothie shop before we made it out of the store parking lot, so we headed in there too.
Lots of Kingwood High School Girls Tennis team members.
It took a little time, but my Angel Food strawberry smoothie was divine!

I had to rush off to work right after that. We're short staffed and heavily class booked in the library, so I had to go in.
Bernie had to fly to Philadelphia earlier that day, so Mom and Dad got to have a little rest and relaxation all by themselves.
Well, almost all by themselves.
Tiggie and Hart were there to amuse them, as always.

Off to the airport.
The scene where all my family visits begin and end.
Hard to say good bye, but it was a great visit.
We were sorry there were no loud thunder and lightening storms; the weather was very mild, sunny yesterday, and gently rainy this morning.

It is just as well they did leave when they did.
Tropical Storm Huberto is coming to visit me tonight!
(Hi Bernie...I heard you got held up three hours at the airport yesterday flying out of Houston. Wonder what TS Huberto will do with your return flight? Is it just me, or is it starting to look like every time we fly anywhere there is always a huge storm going on???)

Oh and I got my hair cut right after Mom and Dad left. I just was tired of putting my hair up in a clip. Hope you like it.
(smooch) Love you! Tiggie and Hart love you too!)

PS: On our local message board here in Kingwood there was a warning for us that we have had 50 inches of rain this year already...and may get 15 inches more tonight.

The message board then posted the tropical storm weather warning, and the wags had this to say in reply:

I'll start building the boat, you gather the animals. How big is a cubit?

Make sure the dinosaurs make it on board this time cause I don't want to be digging them out of the mud next Tuesday;-)


Monday, September 10, 2007


It occurred to me the other day that I know exactly three people who do not have any extended family where they live.
Everyone else that I know has parents, children, cousins, nieces/nephews, aunts, brothers, sisters etc. close enough that they can drop by for a meal at the spur of the moment.

In my family a "drop by for dinner" involves airline reservations, and time zone adaptation.

This past week my dad attended a reunion of the Destroyer Escort ship that he served on during World War II. He saw people he had not seen in 60 years! The reunion was held in Covington Kentucky. Mom went to the reunion too, and on their way home back to San Diego, Mom and Dad flew through Houston to have some time with Bernie and me.

Mom was out last February; I hadn't seen Dad since last December!

Boy, is it good to have them "dropping by" for dinner!
(Thanks Lovella for the Mexican Meatball recipe and menu. It was a hit!)

After a nice catch up last night, we got up this morning, had Blueberry LowFat Scones (thanks again Lovella...)

We then headed downtown Houston to see the "Lucy" exhibit at the Houston Natural History Museum.
I'm not much of a one to be excited about evolution propaganda, but the museum did a great job featuring Ethiopia and the area where "Lucy" was found. (Lucy is the name for the bone fragments that were put together to show a upright walking primate, allegedly "proof" of evolution.)
Dad is interested in archeology, and animals in general, so he requested the trip, and I was more than happy to take them down town for the exhibit.
Dad accommodated my desire to visit the fabulous High Fashion Fabric. Mom was pleased as punch to see the store after all that I had told her about the out of this world fabric selection. Above is part of the collection of velvets.

Dad wandered around for awhile, amazed at store, then found clerks to tease and joke with.

How about this gorgeous fabric?

I really, really loved that fabric!
I really, really couldn't afford that fabric for anything that would make sense with my current lifestyle.
(Yes, that is right...the brown lace fabric is going for five HUNDRED and thirty five dollar a YARD!!!!)
If I happen to discover that I am royalty or a movie star who is up for an Oscar, I might change my mind and swing by to pick up a few yards.
Wouldn't it make a great frock to wear to a Thanksgiving Ball?

Here's a close-up of one of the motifs. Hand sewn in France. Gorgeous. Drool.

I thought this trim would be nice for a winter ball gown. At $69.99 a yard, I could perhaps put a touch around a cuff or neckline.
I got a little velveteen for making cap beaks/bills, and then we headed over to Otto's Barbeque.
Otto's is famous in Houston as it is the barbeque house that former President George and Barbara Bush enjoyed so much they used to have it shipped to the White House.
The personal letters on the wall from the Bush's are pretty humorous.
Gotta love Barbara and George as folk.
FYI: Texas Barbeque: Beef ribs.
The rest of the country uses pork ribs.
A super day...
Tomorrow we'll go for a walk in the woods, to see if we can see some of the fabulous spiders.
Love those spiders!
(That's Bernie's hand about two inches behind the spider, picture taken last week.)
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