Monday, November 29, 2010

Muse: Mission Accomplished!

This is a week of accomplishments. 

For those of you playing along with Nanowrimo, it is the last few days of finishing your novel.  Tomorrow is my, hopefully, last day of physical therapy.  My art group is taking the last few steps towards our federal non-profit status.  November is ending and the holiday season is beginning. 

This is a time of finishing and tying up all those loose ends in preparation for winter. 

As of this morning, I am within a few hundred words of finishing my novel, both with The End and the 50,000 word mark. 

Am I ecstatic about this?

Not really.  Instead, I feel a deep sense of accomplishment and empowerment to be able to finish further projects.  I am not jumping up and down waving my finished novel; I am sitting back and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment. 

What are you accomplishing this week?

Friday, November 26, 2010

Mused: Advent stockings

Last year I made a paper chain with events to do with the kiddo each day as a count down to Solstice.  This year I made stockings.  Or am making, they aren't quite done yet. 

I came across a wonderful pattern on the Martha Stewart website, I believe.  I lost the link for it.  But it was a how to on making mini stockings from paper.  And I thought it would be adorable to have a bunch of little stockings strung across my wall for my calendar this year.

Unfortunately, my wall space is odd and I have to search to see where I'm going to put them up.  I don't have a long stretch of wall in this apartment.  My hallway is full of closet doors.  I could put them high up, but I want the young one to be able to reach them himself.  I think there might be a spot in the kitchen/dining room. 

The green slips are going to be what the activities are written on.  I'm going to put a number on each heel or toe and add a little loop to hang them from.  Then I will put them up with a ribbon/string running between them.

Are you counting down the days?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Musing: At Dawn

There is a rainbow
stacked on the horizon.
Layered like cocktail hour,
each heavier than the next,
keeping them separate and distinct
until the sun rises farther
and shakes the sky into
a uniform color.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Muse: The Holidays are here!

Normally, I have an aversion to all things xmas until after Turkey Day.  Xmas music, decorations, Salvation Army canisters, they call come after Turkey Day.

So why am I posting about it here?  Because it's better to have it done in advance, that's why! :) 

I plan on starting to decorate the day after Turkey Day.  I don't go in for the Black Friday sales.  It breaks my little anti-consumer heart, and people phobia, to think about it.  One of these days I'm betting that I will go to one of those sales, but I doubt it will be this year.

I'm starting to get into the decorating mood and in the Oh Shhh! phase of gift creating along with working to finish my novel.  So it will be a busy month.

What are you doing to get ready for the holidays?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Mused: Family Cranberry Recipe

So... I said I would share this recipe with you.  I have to admit, it's not really a recipe.  And I haven't made it this year so I can't share a picture with you.  But this is one of my absolutely favorite parts of Thanksgiving. 

My great-grandmother used to make this recipe every year but unfortunately can no longer make it.  Fortunately, she is 93 and still kicking.  But she taught me how to make it and she taught some other family members, so we will continue to have cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving.  I've often wondered why I don't make it at other times, but I think it's just something about the holiday.

Keep in mind that this sounds disgusting, but it's actually really yummy.  And it's not really a sauce.

Cranberry Sauce:
2 cans whole cranberry sauce (you could use the jelly stuff, but I can't stand it)
1 container whip cream
1 sleeve crackers

1.  Mash up your crackers into crumbs.  You could buy cracker crumbs already mashed or bread crumbs, but make sure you add some salt to the bread crumbs.

2.  Layer your goods.  Put a layer of cranberries on the bottom of your dish.  I typically use a clear mixing bowl, but I've used tupperware as well.  On top of the cranberries, sprinkle enough cracker crumbs so that they cover the cranberries.  On top of the cracker crumbs, put down a layer of whip cream.  Repeat.

The thickness of the layers is up to you, but I do a little more whip cream than cranberries and it works out well. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Musing: Pull the covers up

The cold has moved in.
Silently, quietly,
pulliing the covers up
and shutting windows.
The hum of the furnace
replaces the rustle of leaves
and teasing night winds.
Too soon the first of frost
will touch our lives.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Muse: A Thankful Thanksgiving

It's a week early, but I have a recipe to share with you on Friday and don't want you to miss it! 

Thanksgiving is always one of those stressful times of year around our house.  It's that close to the xmas season and there's loads of things to cook.  But this year my mom is hosting and is requesting for everyone to bring something.  Much better in my mind. 

Thanksgiving is a time of the gathering together of family and friends and giving thanks for what you have.  A lot of times, we forget that aspect of the holiday.  At least, I know I do.  But this next week I really want to slow down and take a look at just what I have accomplished instead of looking at what I have left to do.  Hopefully, when we gather together on Thanksgiving, it will be with a full heart that I thank the gods in my own way and enjoy time with my extended family.

One of my friends only seems to be excited about the sales the next day, wanting me to go out with her.  She hopes she gets to punch someone in order to get an item for cheap.  She's never done it, and I don't think she really would anyway, but that's my friend.  I have always stayed away from Black Friday.  Sure, there may be sales, but do I want to deal with the mass of humanity all focused on getting something cheap before anyone else?  Not really. 

I don't like people pressing in around me anyway and I really dislike mass commercialism. 

But I think that having such a 'me first' attitude the day after we give thanks for being with family and for what we have is wrong.  I feel like the feelings from Thanksgiving should last at least most of the holiday season, and they do, except for this black day where all rules seem to go out the window.  Ah well.  I can see the draw of it.  And some days I wish I could go out and get the deals without being squished or frozen.  But I'm always broke on Black Friday.  Maybe I will go with my friend to the place where they have layaway...

What are you doing for Thanksgiving?  If you don't meet up with family, do you go out with friends?  Do you only get excited for Black Friday?  What are you thankful for?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Mused: Craft Fair Setup

I was worried when I got down to a week to go to the fair and I didn't have a set up yet.  But while I was outside looking for sticks to try and make the kiddo a Harry Potter style wand, I realized that I had a huge resource at my disposal.

For a previous swap, I had made a jewelry holder out of twigs, and so why couldn't I make a display out of them?

I grabbed a couple mostly straight sticks that I thought would hold up under handling and one that had lots of smaller branches and sprayed them down with glaze.  The straight ones where wrapped together using hemp and all of them were sunk into tin cans wrapped around with more hemp and full of stones. 

I got more comments on my set up than my product at the fair.  I was quite happy with it all.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Musing: Morning Crows

Crows scold us
on our way through the lot
for disturbing their scavaging.
The brave ones wait
on curbs and trees,
playing chicken with the
land-bound beast before
taking to the air
joining the circling
clouds of their kind.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Muse: Crafting Crafting Crafting

I decided to participate in a craft fair finally.  I was trying to help motivate a friend of mine who decided she wanted to start a crafty jewelry business as her part time job.  So what better way to get her out there and finding customers?  A craft fair!

I had kind of given up on the idea of my own crafty business as too much work.  If I have to make the same thing too many times, I'm tired of it and it's not fun anymore.  But I decided I could help her out.  I'd bring my hemp jewelry and she could bring her beaded jewelry and we could have a good time sitting together.

Except she flaked on me.  Granted, I expected it, but still, geez.  So luckily I had snagged another friend to sit with me, had a bunch of zines from another friend, and I knew half of the vendors, so it was a pretty good day.  Do I think I'll do it again?  Maybe, but with different/more items. 

I had fun, though, and learned a bit.  And I got my son to get me an xmas present I'm really going to enjoy. 

So even though it threw off my writing, I'm glad I participated.

What do you want to do but haven't gone for?

Extra! Noumenia: A New Month

I forgot Noumenia this month.  I remembered that I needed to write a post on Monday morning, but I completely forgot about honoring the gods this weekend.  Too much stuff going on!  My brain explodes!

My goal this month is to settle down and not add anymore events.

I did accomplish a task I forgot to tell you about last month.  My living room is free of boxes, yay!  I finally 'unpacked' that room by putting it all into storage.  Most of it was decorative items that I just didn't know what to do with.  So I figure if I don't know what to do with it, it doesn't need to be sitting out.

NaNoWriMo is kicking my butt and not only did I not catch up this weekend, but I'm actually further behind than I was.  But you know what?  It doesn't matter.  I am doing it for myself.  I keep telling myself that when I want to rip up what I just wrote because it's not perfect, I can rewrite it later.  Right now it's just about getting it down, right?

But my first craft fair is done and over so that is out of the way.  And my first choir concert since high school is done and over.

So for the rest of the month I just need to balance writing with crafting.  Some how I chose to sign up for multiple swaps this month.  I'm just that kind of crazy.

So here is to a great new month to come and a goodbye to the past month.  Welcome!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Mused: Pencil/Pen Case

I have a tendency to forget where I put my pens.  I have two places in my house where they could be and they are always there when I see them... But when I go looking?  They disappear. Just like my scissors and fingernail clippers.

I do a lot of writing on the rideshare van each morning and I have pens tucked into a pocket of my bag.  Well, they either got out of my bag or I couldn't find the pen I wanted each morning.  So when my friend Kristin shared one of her patterns at a sew 'n swap, I knew I had found a solution to my problems.

This also gives me something to just throw in another bag when I am going elsewhere without worrying about loosing my pen.  It's just in that bag there!

The pattern is called Love Bug Clutch and it is free over at Kristin's site, Craft Leftovers.  You should totally go check it out.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Musing: Poetry Fill In

Well, boys and girls, it is NaNoWriMo time and I feel like I am cheating myself when I write something not related to my novel already.  So today (and probably the rest of the month) I will be scouring my notebooks for poems to share with you.  I don't think I'm going to be writing any poetry this month either unless I get ahead of my word count goal.  I've got some craft projects to do too and have to fit the time in somewhere.

I thought I was on track last night as I averaged out my six pages a day.  Unfortunately, after actually counting the number of words, I'm a bit behind the average and I didn't write as much this morning.  But I have things planned every day this week.  And I have to work through lunch.  Next week I hope to be able to kick out more than the average to make up the slack.

For all my moaning about it, though, I am really enjoying and finding it pretty easy to just sit down and write.  Some of it will probably be trashed and some of it will be added to, but I like just getting the story out of my head and onto paper.

I hope you are enjoying NaNoWriMo!

The waning crescent
falls toward oblivion
the end of the silver light
every month, the death of it all
Nights in darkness
broken only by the
faint star light
But yet, when darkness reigns
a sliver is born again.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Muse: NaNoWriMo

It's November 1st, and that means that it's National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  What is this, you might ask?  It is
National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.
This is about quantity, not necessarily quality.  It's a way to get people to just sit down and write.  Lots of people (myself included) have always wanted to write a novel but have never gotten around to it.  There are too many monsters saying no in our heads.  NaNoWriMo is a way to get past that.  Not only is it a goal, but it is a group of people who want to help you with that goal.

I've heard about this thing for a couple years but have never done anything about it.  This year is different.  This year I am participating and hopefully will be able to crank out this idea in my head. 

Since I don't have a computer at home, I am writing most of my story long hand.  I worked it out to be about six pages a day.  I've already written two and a half this morning on my commute, so I feel pretty good about being able to reach my goal.  Granted, half of it might have to be scrapped and rewritten in the editing phase, but that's okay because it will have been written.  This may start a new habit of writing multiple pages in the morning.  Which I think is a good thing.

You may also notice that this mornings post is not entitled 'Inspire.'  I've decided that one of my changes to the blog will be the Inspire, Write, and Create headers.  They will be changed to Muse, Musing, and Mused.  Soon I am hoping to also have pages/links on the side so that you can go directly to all the posts under a certain heading.

Are you going to write this month?